Friday, December 23, 2022

Fourth Frugal Friday of December 2022

Welcome to Friday! 

Quote of the Week
When they saw the star, they were filled with joy. They entered the house and saw the child with Mary, his mother. Falling to their knees, they honored him. Then they opened their treasure chests and presented him with gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh ~ Matthew 2:10-11
Price of Gas this Week

Gas was $2.45 per gallon here this week. 

My Frugal Week

We have that arctic air coming through here tonight and have already lost power, so I’m going to post this, but may not be able to post comments or reply until our power is restored. 

Last Friday I wanted to make a couple of casserole hot pads to include with the ladies gifts we were bringing with us to the family Christmas get together. It only took me a couple of hours to make them. 

I think it took longer to gather all my sewing items together since I haven’t sewn in a while. My sewing machine needle broke while I was making these,  so I put my last one in the machine, and added more to my shopping list. 

One of the wheels on our desk chair wasn’t rolling correctly, so I tried fix it, but it still wouldn’t roll correctly. So, I bought a new set of wheels from Amazon, but only replaced the one wheel that didn’t work. No need to replace all of them as they are still good. Now I have four extra wheels in case anything happens to another wheel or chair. 

I’m very happy that our electric bill is only $147.15 this month, the lowest it has been all year. My half of it will only be $73.57, which is about half of the $150 I budget for the electric. I’ll put the other half in my electric slush fund for when the bills are higher in the summertime. 

We went to town on Tuesday to pick up a few groceries for Christmas celebrations. We also had an appointment and received the most recent Covid booster shot. And we’ve both had our flu shots this year too. 

Our car tires always lose pressure when the drop in temperature and cold weather strikes. I was so tired of this and having to pay $1.50 or more to put air in my tires. So, I bought a Carsun tire inflator from Amazon for this purpose. They are very affordable and easy to use and I would highly recommend everyone keep one in his or her car. 

My brother bought a 2012 Chevy Cruze back a year or so ago for our Mother. Mom never did drive it, but she would faithfully go outside once a week to start it. It’s been sitting here ever since and it sold this week. 

It’s an unusual feeling for me having Mom’s things here without her being here, and this will be my first Christmas without her, so this marks another chapter in our lives that has closed. 

We will be spending time with my exdh’s family, who are Bailey’s family too. Since Mom and Dad are not here this year, I’m very grateful to still have some family to celebrate with. 

New: Subscribe by Email

I’ve had several people ask me over the last year what happened to the email subscription to my blog. Blogger did away with that feature, but I recently found something else that I hope will work in its place called Follow It. There is a link in the top of the right sidebar if you’re interested in signing up. 


I have a friend who had too much produce, so she shared some of it with us. She gave us about twenty pounds of carrots, potatoes, onions, and cabbage. We will definitely be putting all of that to good use. 

Joy of the Week

I received a Christmas card this week from a very dear blog reader, Bobi. It was such a sweet gesture and really made my day. 💕 

Avoiding Spending

I did the majority of my Christmas shopping in November and when I was done I was really done. So, no spending for me this week except for a few groceries and some gas. 

Saving Money In My Frugal Kitchen

I used up the last of some crab Rangoon we had in the freezer while gaining that space back. I used up a can of vegetable soup and Veg All from the pantry for lunch one day. Someone gave us four cans of vegetable soup, so I am working to use them up. 

We made five dozen cookies on Thursday to bring to family on Friday and Saturday. One of the recipes was our old favorite one and the other cookies were made using a cake mix. It’s one cake mix, two eggs, and 1/2 cup vegetable oil. Bake at 350 degrees for 6 to 9 minutes, depending on your oven. 

Meals This Week

All meals are served with either salad or vegetables and may not always be listed here. 

Chicken & Olive Spread, Fried Rice, Corn on the Cob, Carrots.
Open Face Roast Beef Sandwiches, Roasted Potatoes, Carrots and Cabbage. 
Baked Potatoes, Mixed Vegetables, Corn. 
Beef with gravy, Mashed Potatoes, Mixed Vegetables.
Macaroni and Cheese, Mixed Vegetables. 
Homemade Pizza for Movie Night
Better Cheddars, Rice & Cheese, Mixed Vegetables. 

* If you see a dinner in bold print that means we had it more than once this week.

Recipe of the Week

Bailey requested Hash Brown Casserole for Christmas dinner this year, so I went looking for my recipe on my blog here and realized it’s not on here. So, I’m including it here for future reference. This is the Cracker Barrel copycat recipe, but I use cream of potato soup in my recipe along with extra sharp cheddar cheese. 

Hashbrown Casserole


1 (32-ounce) package frozen diced hash brown potatoes, thawed

1 (10 3/4-oz.) can cream of potato soup

1 (8-oz.) container sour cream

1 cup shredded extra sharp Cheddar cheese

1/2 cup chopped onion

1/2 cup melted butter


1/4 cup butter, melted

2 cups corn flakes cereal


Preheat the oven to 350°F. 

Stir together the first 6 ingredients.

Spoon into a greased 9 x 13 baking dish.

Crush the cereal, and stir in the melted 1/4 cup butter. 

Sprinkle over the potato mixture.

Bake at 350°F for 50 minutes.

Saving on Entertainment

One of the films we watched this week was Knives Out, which is a murder mystery about crime novelist Harlan Thrombey who was found deceased at his mansion and an investigator is secretly hired to investigate his death. It was a good film, which I thoroughly enjoyed. It’s free to watch if you have Amazon Prime. 

What I've been Reading This Week

Simplest Ever Sewing Projects

Dr. McDougll is offering all of his books for free right now on his website. All you have to do is click over to his website, click on shop, and go to ebooks. From there you can download seven of his books.

Thank you for dropping by my frugal blog, you are always welcome here. I hope and pray that each one of you have a wonderful holiday weekend however you plan on spending the days. And above all I hope you all stay safe and warm. 

Mortgage & Debt Free
~ Living within our Means ~
My Linktree

~ She looketh well to the ways of her household ~
Proverbs 31:27


  1. I understand your thoughts with your mom. That first year is so much to process. I'm sorry you lost power. It's bitter cold here, but we've got all we need. We just have a brewery stop for companion items to gifts and then are done for real.

    1. Thank you, Sam. The power just came back on after being off for seven hours. The temperature inside the house got down to 51 degrees. I’m so glad you have all that you need in that bitter cold up there. And, I hope you all have a very Merry Christmas!

  2. Hope your power isn't out long. It is bitter cold here with extremely high winds.
    Stay warm and cozy!
    I understand that "first" Christmas or any special day without a special someone. Huge hugs to you. Know she is watching over you. Keep her alive sharing memories this season.
    Your meals sound great.
    Wishing you a very Merry Christmas!!!!!

    1. Thank you for your kind sweet words, Cheryl. The power is back on after 7 hours, so I’m happy. I wish you the merriest of Christmas too.

  3. Belinda I can't believe you lost power in this cold. I hope you & Bailey are ok. I will be worried about you.

    My husband is having to work out in it. :( He went to work in all his Winter gear and he said he felt so stuffed and stiff, lol.

    I know how hard it is the first holiday when we have lost a loved one. I am here for you. Sending you & Bailey big hugs. Remember they are always with us and we see them every day in the little things. That is what gives me comfort. It is truly hard.

    I signed up for the email subscription. Yeah! :)

    Aren't the lower gas prices great? DH didn't fill up the truck for a month and half. We filled up on Wednesday and it was under $45. Can't wait to get a hybrid. It could be $45 for a year.

    I hope you have a beautiful Christmas full of wonderful memories for you & Bailey.

    1. Our power was just restored after 7 hours, Safyne. So, we are ok. Thank you for being concerned about us and your sweet words about Mom. 💕 Bless your dh’s heart, having to be out in this bitter cold. I hope he stays safe and warm, you too!

      I hope the email subscription works, thank you for signing up. I am thrilled at the lower gas prices! I know you are too.

      Merry Christmas to you and yours this holiday season. I hope you also make wonderful memories.

    2. My state (Ohio) added a $100 yearly fee to the license plate fees for hybrid and electric vehicles. The thinking is those car owners don’t buy gas so we are not paying enough for road maintenance and other fees. Very upset with this fee, we buy gas for our hybrid, we are just lucky to have a vehicle that gets great mpg. Thought we were saving money and helping the environment with this car (Toyota Prius V, which we love) but don’t like being penalized. Deana

  4. Hi Belinda, I'm glad you got your power restored fairly quckly (as those things go). It is about 13 degrees here in central Mississippi.
    The first Christmas without a loved one is bittersweet, but I know you and Bailey will have a great time with family and friends.
    I wish you a very merry Christmas!! Thank you for the work you put into your blog. I may not comment very often, but I read every post.

    1. Thank you, Frances. I was so happy when the power came back on too. Sounds very cold in your hometown too. Please stay safe and warm. Thank you so much for your sweet, kind words about my blog. It means a lot to me. I hope you have a wonderful Christmas and many blessings in the New Year. 💕

  5. Aww, thanks for the shout out. Glad to hear you got the card. I don't always trust the P.O. Happy to know your power came back. It's 9° here so that's a worry for us too. Hope you have a wonderful Christmas. Thanks for the McDougall tip too!

    1. You’re welcome, Bobi. 😊 Brrr! It’s cold by you too. I hope you have a wonderful Christmas too and stay snug, and safe, and warm.

  6. Merry Christmas to you and Bailey! Glad your power came back on. Stay warm and safe!

  7. Thank you, Celie. I hope you have a very merry Christmas too. And please stay safe and warm. 💕

  8. Merry Christmas!
    Sending hugs to you and Bailey!
    So glad that your power is back. It is surely cold out there. I think the wind chills have been below zero, but we should have a warm up to 30 for Christmas day.
    Stay safe and warm.

    1. We hope you had a very Merry Christmas too, Kathy. 😊 And we hope you have a very blessed New Year too! Hugs to you. 💕


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