Friday, December 1, 2023

First Frugal Friday of December 2023


Welcome to Frugal Friday! 

My Frugal Week

I earned a $15 gift card to Amazon this week from Swagbucks and used it to buy a Christmas present. 

Last Friday we went to my BIL's home for our family Thanksgiving Dinner. I had a physical therapy appointment that morning, so headed down to Chattanooga early in the day. The mall was packed full of cars for early Black Friday shoppers.

This past Tuesday was my last day of physical therapy. The Lymphedema specialist told me she had done all she could to soften my lymphedema, which had turned fibrotic before my sessions, so she had me discharged. 

So, now I have to find some customized compression garments that will actually work for me for my trunk area, which so far has been very challenging. I will also need to continue manual lymph drainage (MLD) on my own as it will return if I am not vigilant. 

I did get a free t-shirt for graduating from physical therapy.  

I also got some more new to me clothing from one of Bailey's sourcing trips. This lady had a lot of clothes in my old and my new size, so several of them fit me and I ended up with three new shirts and a new pair of capris. One of the shirts is a long sleeve thermal shirt, which is perfect for this cold weather. 


This week I not only took inventory of my pantry, but I cleaned and decluttered my kitchen drawers. I took everything out and vacuumed the inside of the drawers and they look so much better. I also made up a bag of items to donate to Trade Day, which is coming up on Sunday December 10th, in the process. 

I found two pennies in one of the drawers while I was cleaning, one of those was a 1945 wheat penny. Mom must have saved it in there at one point in time. 💕 

I also took all my CPAP supplies and rather than have them on a shelf, organized them into my practically empty nightstand drawer where the CPAP sits. I don't know why I didn't think of that before, but it freed up space on the shelf. 

Taking Care of Business

For more than thirty years I have used the Scotch Brite yellow and green heavy duty sponges to wash dishes.  I bought the pack above in a hurry one day, but they began to disintegrate in my hand only after a few days of use, which was odd because the Scotch Brite ones last for months. 

I checked the package and realized they were made by Bradshaw Home. So, I called Bradshaw Home and told them about my experience.  They are sending me some new ones and hopefully they will work better.

Turning on the Heat

Before turning on any heat in the house I make sure to ask myself these questions:

Do I have long sleeves on or a sweater or jacket? 
Do I have socks, slippers, or shoes on my feet?
And if it's really cold, do I have gloves on, or a hat on my head? 
Am I sitting down and could cover up with a blanket instead? 

If not, then I will do those things first before turning on any heat in order to save money on our electric bill. 

December Budget Reminders

Since this is the first of the month, I went over my budget for the month to ensure everything was in line with my financial goals. 

As you're preparing your budget for the December, here are some ideas to keep in mind.  

Do you need to budget for gifts? Such as those last minute Christmas gifts. Family, friends, classroom parties, gift exchanges at work or neighbors, teachers, etc.

Do you need to budget more gas money, or maybe extra food costs? 

Do you need to budget for parties? Such as work parties, friends holiday gatherings, classroom parties for your children? 

Also, if money is tight in December and these are known expenses, think about utilizing a sinking fund. It is easier to put $20 into an envelope each month instead of coming up with all the money in one month.


Both of the next two freebies comes from the Everything Frugal Facebook group

Free Monthly No Spend Charts

2024 Frugal Calendar

Freebies I picked up this week include a calendar and magazine from Farm Bureau and some canned goods from our local no spend group. I also picked up a pregnancy support belt for free from a local no spend group. My physical therapist recommended one to me, so I'll try it and see if it works.

Joy of the Week

Photo of the Week

One night after I went to sleep this week, Bailey saw my water bottle on the kitchen counter and thought it was cute and took a photo of it and posted it to her Instagram story. When she told me about it the next day, she said over 70 people had seen it and several said it was genius, and innovative. LOL

Savings of the Week

Dollar Tree for the win! 32 ounces of Apple Cider Vinegar for $1.25.  

Question of the Week

I read a Facebook post from a content creator on Sunday that said this:
"I don’t know who needs to hear this, but those Thanksgiving leftovers are no good now. Throw them out!"

This was my response to her post:

I do my best to avoid food waste. If taken care of and stored correctly and safely, those foods can be frozen and used another time in order to save money.

 Honestly, I was surprised she posted that and many of the comments were of the "I'm still eating our leftovers" positions. What do you think?

Thank you for dropping by my frugal blog, you are always welcome here. 

We would love to hear all about your week in the comment section.

Homemaker at Heart
Mortgage & Debt Free
~ Living within our Means ~
My Linktree

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


  1. I use the Parmesan containers and the lids for so many things. I had DE in one to keep outdoors and sprinkle on things.
    They are good for so many things.
    You could fill me in on so many things about lymphedema. Can you email me at

  2. New clothes, some new scrub pads (reminds me I want to add some of those to the boy's baskets), what a great week.

    God bless.

    1. Thank you, Jackie. I hope you also had a great week.

  3. Hi Belinda! Regarding the Thanksgiving leftovers, I think that if they smell good and look good (no mold), I will still eat them. Or like you said, just freeze them and use them later. I'm like you, I don't like to waste food. I don't know much about Lymphedema, I'm going to google it and see what I can learn. Blessings to you and Bailey!

    1. I’m with you on eating the leftovers too, Bobbi. We eat them regularly. I hope you’re doing well!

  4. I love that water bottle too-smart! I'm so glad your Lymphedema is better than it was. That's the way you got to look at it.
    I try to give away a lot of the food after Thanksgiving so it's not so much for us. I'm with you freeze that turkey in portions and use it just like chicken!

    1. Thanks, Vickie. Oh yes, using the turkey like chicken is a great idea. And giving away a lot of the food is also a great way to "use it up".

  5. (Little Penpen) hi Belinda! I hope you can find what you need for the lymphedema. I know it can be challenging. New to you clothes are fun! I found a couple of sweaters for myself yesterday at Goodwill.

    1. I'm glad you were able to find a couple of sweaters at Goodwill for yourself, Penny. It's definitely the right tie of year for those. I have two in my cedar chest ready to pull out when needed. I hope you're doing well. :)

  6. Glad the physical therapy has helped, and I hope you can find what you need for compression. Sorry you are having to deal with all that but I hope the worst is over anyway.
    Too funny that Bailey posted your water bottle. Looks like some good freebies and refunds. Hope you have a fun weekend.

    1. Thank you, Kathy. Yes, Bailey is a comedian. LOL

      I hope you have a great weekend too.

  7. Hi Belinda. A product that may help with your lymphatic drainage is Clarins Contour Body Firming Oil. It is a bit pricey but sometimes they carry it online at TJ Maxx. I used to work for Clarins many years ago at a department store in Florida. Take care. Bun

    1. Oh, thank you so much, Bun. I will definitely look into that as I need to continue my therapy at home. You're the best. :)

    2. My mother in law suffers with this and she has a leg pumping device she uses at home. It may be covered by your insurance since it is durable medical equipment. Take care. Bun

    3. Yes, my physical therapist is in the process of getting me a pump device too. I’ll be so glad too because I don’t want this to come back. Thank you, Bun.


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