Saturday 4 April 2015

This Week's Frugal Tasks 4th April 2015

For the third year running,  Darren and I have had the pleasure of making our own hot cross buns. They are a labour of love but really worth the effort.  It was the highlight of our week.  Here's what else we got up to -

*  Sorted out the freebies from the flower show and stored them in my garden shed.

*  Ripped up some school notices to use as note paper.  I bought a magnetic clipboard a few years ago from a $2 shop.  It came with a note pad but once I used it up I started using school notices.  It's the perfect size for a weekly shopping list or a  "To Do" list.

*  Washed the dishes by hand a few nights this week when there wasn't enough to put the dishwasher on.

*  Made a few more birthday cards.

*  Picked the first crop of lemons from our tree for this season.

*  Gratefully received two big Queensland Blue pumpkins from my friend Cath.  Megan has put her order in for pumpkin soup.

*  Picked 10 - 15 raspberries each day.

*  Bought a big bag of apples from the fruit and veg shop bargain table for $1.  There were about 15 - 20 apples in the bag and they all looked good.

*  Saved lots of warm up water and shower water for the washing machine.

*  Froze three serves of left over beef stew and two of tuna pasta bake.  I'll have to put freezer meals on the menu again as they keep piling up.

*  Darren and I made two dozen hot cross buns.  We've eaten some fresh,  some toasted under the grill and the rest are for the freezer.  Our freezer gets fed well doesn't it ?

*  Planted out the broccoli seedlings I've grown from seed.

*  Gratefully received some fruit salad, sandwiches and small desserts.

Freebies from the flower show
First lemons of the season.
$1 a bag apples.
My clipboard note pad.
Homemade hot cross buns.
Part of our Easter display
* What things have you done this week to save time,  money and energy?


  1. Hi Wendy

    I love hot cross buns and made some a few years ago. I should find my recipe today and make some for tomorrow. I'm the only one who eats them though

    This week I

    Dried all clothes on the clothes airer (its rained all night here so may have to use the drier today).

    Cut back again on using the dishwasher - only 3 times this week.

    Went to pick up an easter egg for DD and put it back, some really ridiculous prices here and she'll be happy with a block of chocolate and some lollies.

    Took all lunches and Morning Tea from home.

    Cooked all meals and snacks from scratch including a yummy chocolate coconut slice.

    DH bought 2 kilos of bananas for $3

    Had a meeting with our financial adviser to get a reduced interest rate on our home loan - he told us that he gets to offer 3 people a month a further discounted rate and will offer that to us :) I'm very determined to get rid of our mortgage.

    Found a 1.5 kilo tray of marked down premium mince for $5 - 4 meals for us.

    Have a wonderful easter and a great week.



  2. I planned to make Easter Buns this year as I have a recipe I want to trial. However I have been suffering extreme back pain so still on the to do list.
    Used some of the emergency meals in freezer as I have been unable to cook.
    Stocked up on toothpaste from Chemist Warehouse so stockpile is looking good.
    Been very glad I have paid family Ambulance membership as daughter's friend has been in dispute with their health fund over a trip to ED. Who defines what is an "emergency " ?
    Did not kill a basil plant that I got on clearance. I do not have green thumbs.
    Hope to get some marked down fish from supermarket in next few days.
    Giving thanks for daily decrease in pain, and increase in movement. K

  3. What a good week Wendy! The hot cross buns would be beautiful. All those samples from the flower show will be so handy. I remember school notices amounted to a huge volume of paper!
    Often I feel I get less done in a short week due to public holidays. But this weekend is contributing to lots getting done around the house and garden so it is pretty good for productivity!
    Last week I planted out a lot of succulents I had collected plus cuttings I had started in bottles for a while. I did lots of cooking and cleaning. I made a double bath of miracle cleaner as I give the girls a bottle each.
    We had a plumbing problem and I mean a bit problem as it flooded the whole bathroom. But Andy fixed it all himself and let's say the bathroom floor has never been so clean as that was a lot of water. But no plumber costs.
    I have been pruning in the garden and filling some empty pots and bare spots with parsley seeds.
    We had a little bit of rain as a small start on the garden. I am grateful for every drop!
    Have a wonderful Easter. Love

  4. Hi Wendy,

    - cooked all meals from scratch as usual
    - made a cheesecake and muffins for easter
    - made chocolate yogo

    I cut my teenage daughters hair. Their hair is very thick and long . I bought a hair dressing cape and scissors form Daiso and learned how to cut long layers by watching youtube tutorials.

    - have lots of cheap and free activities planned for the school holidays
    - had two no spend days this week

    Have a wonderful Easter


  5. What lovely Hot Cross Buns Wendy. They look delicious! Made a couple batches here as well. One with mixed dried fruit for hubby and I and another with Sultanas for teenager and my parents who don't like mixed peel. Been making them a few years now and took ideas from a few recipes and tweaked them to our tastebuds liking.
    More frugal tasks this week were making couple batches yoghurt and flavouring with frozen fruit from the freezer.
    Buying some marked down meat at woollies that had two markdowns making it half price. Bulk butchers in my area aren't so cheap anymore so I cook meals around my double stickered markdowns. Also bought some toiletries from the clearance trolley. Have found a lot of great things in our local woollies clearance trolley. I now only go into Woollies for clearance trolley and the marked down meat and anything Aldi doesn't sell.
    MOO'd drain cleaner with cheapskates recipe, worked a treat!
    Planted some vegie seeds in our vegie squares. Fruit & Vegies I can't grow get bought at local farmers market.
    Did a freezer and pantry stocktake as need to use things up as am having our floors redone in 3 weeks and need one freezer empty so less to move out of the way for the tradies.
    Hope you and your family have a lovely Easter Wendy. God Bless, Claire

    1. Hi Claire, we use dried mixed fruit of pears, peaches and apricots for our hot cross buns with one cup of sultanas. No one in my home likes mixed peel.

  6. Hi Wendy, Liz here, been a busy week, I finally bought 6 hens after hubby and I spent a day repairing the old chook pen. There 18-20 weeks old (point of lay) but wont start laying eggs for another week I was told. As there so young we had to go out there at dusk last night and teach them how to perch, quick learners tho! I made some nesting boxes out of some drawers from a desk I picked up at the tip shop for $2, will have to teach them to sit in them now! I cooked all meals from scratch and as I have a house full over guests for easter this has kept me busy. I had enough pumpkin soup and sausage rolls to freeze some. I only made one trip to town this week for a few supplies. Sold some books on Buy Swap and Sell which paid for the chooks! We collected a load of firewood off our property and I again cooked a few meals on the wood stove to save gas.Hung all the washing on the clothes line to dry as the weather has been beautiful here in W.A. In the garden I have been mulching the vegetables with the hay the sheep have finished with and thinning out my turnip and sweede seedlings. Collected a few bottles to make lemon cordial and a friend kindly gave me some egg cartons. Thanks again for your blog Wendy, has inspired me greatly, regards Liz

    1. You are very welcome Liz.

      How exciting to get chickens again.

  7. You had a great week Wendy. I made my own hot cross buns last year and they taste so much better baked at home with love. Gave it a miss this year because my partner doesn’t really like them, so I end up eating most of them myself!

    Instead, used up some over-ripe pears and bananas for muffins today. These were very popular. Will add some choc-chips tomorrow and make a batch for the freezer (it is Easter after all).

    We enjoyed a day out in the city yesterday with the Good Friday buzz. I packed snacks, bottled water etc so we were prepared. And we enjoyed some fish and chips on the beach (venue was supporting Good Friday Appeal with purchases, so a good cause). We love going out and doing things so I am making a big effort to find any free/discounted activities in our area.

    I have been enjoying the most of in-season pumpkin. I put it into a quiche today (roasted with broccoli) with left-over turkey for lunch at home. Bananas $2.50kg at Aldi today. From fruit and veg - 5kg bag of potatoes for $2.99 and 5 fresh corn husks for $3. Normally I would pick up better deals from fruit and veg tomorrow afternoon (Sunday clearance) but can’t make it with Easter tomorrow.
    I will bake fresh bread tomorrow. Have a fantastic restful Easter everyone – Tina xx

    1. Tina, we freeze most of our hot cross buns.

  8. Always love your blog and everything you share. So much useful the idea of using old paper on a children always play with the never have any...Great idea...saving paper is such a wonderful idea just in itself!

  9. Hi Wendy, So many great tips again this week, thanks.
    This week I made some homemade chocolates for Easter and my darling sons said they tasted like Lindt chocolates. Didn't get to make hot x buns this year as we are away.
    Continued to pick vegies and fruit from the garden and to save water.
    Saved some of the seeds from my Tomatoes to use for next years crop. As my parsley was going to seed, I planted this in a small pot and I'm hoping it will reshoot.
    Enrolled in the Premiers Active Challenge through our local council and received 20 free visits to our local pool, great to use as a school holiday activity{ runs between 01/04-30/04}.
    And lastly, our poor old seedling tray was too far gone for growing our seedlings this season and I didn't want to buy another until they came on sale so I used old small pots I had lying around. I have used these before with success so hopefully this will tied us over.
    Happy Easter to all,
    Blessings, Maureen

  10. Hi Wendy, sorry to go off topic but I'd love to read any info or tips you have for growing raspberries! Can you tell me how many plants you have? I'm very keen to grow my own but haven't done it before.

    Thanks and happy Easter!

    1. I've put a detailed answer about raspberries in This Week's Frugal Tasks dated 28th March 2015. It's in the answers section. Hope this helps.

  11. You have done so very well on what must be a very busy week for you and your husband. The hot cross buns look delicious.

    Our week went a little awry in the money saving stakes as it was our daughter's fifth birthday as well as Easter - even though we had a very small party and homebaked goodies we seemed to have a higher spend than usual. We also took her out for a special lunch on Thursday and to see Cinderella. I found a deal at Dendy which was $9 tickets and included a large popcorn (called Family Tix) and she and her brother (almost 3) enjoyed their first trip to the cinema so worth the money.

    I did some sewing for the children using op-shopped fabric and mending of my maternity clothes which are not in the greatest shape (only have to hold out another 6 weeks though).

    I also stocked up on some specials at IGA and Woolworths and we enjoyed books and DVDs from the library.

  12. This week’s frugal tasks

    - Bought a pool from Bunnings that was marked $25 down from $100 (what a bargain!) definitely worth getting for next summer!
    - Started my monthly menu it’s been great so far.
    - Baked some muffins and 2 loaves of bread
    - Germinated some seeds I bought off eBay for $1 with free postage
    - transplanted a chilli tree I have that was well overdue
    - planted a strawberry plant and yet to plant my pineapple tree and another chilli tree I have
    - Did a little more decluttering (I just have way too much stuff!)
    - Kids and I are sick this week again  they have gastro poor babies I’m still trying to figure out how to work the nappies and now lactose free formula into the budget (do you have any tips please?)
    - have made all meals from scratch except for 1
    - Did a lot of garden work at my mum’s house and getting my section of the yard ready for my veggie patch and chooks I am very excited about this!
    - Bided on a chicken coop, got it at $100 the original price without bidding is $180
    I had a very lovely Easter, I hope you have too Wendy

    1. Anne, I used cloth nappies for Jessica and only used disposable when we were out for long periods. Megan was such a skinny minnie that cloth didn't stay up on her. By about 9 months of age I gave up and started using disposable. At the time, Baby Love the best priced nappy other than no name.

      I've since found out that Baby Love nappies are the older technology of Huggies.

  13. wow wendy thats quite interesting actually.
    i love the thought of cloth nappies but i feel that its more on my plate if i do it that way
    I've been buying aldi nappies but i think i go through them quicker for some odd reason.
    I'm also in the middle of toilet training which is semi fun haha
    Miah has her days where she will go on her own and its all breezy but then there will be days where shell act like a baby because her brother is still in nappies. (Stuart jnr is 9 months old)

    1. Oh yes, I remember the toilet training days. No pull ups back then.

  14. Wow! I don't know where to begin!
    I've been following and putting so many of your ideas in place Wendy it has changed my entire way of thinking and being so fast!
    So far this week
    I've recieved free cauliflower seeds from Yates
    A brand new slushy machine from our local buy, sell and swap page
    Three loaves of fresh Brumbies bread plus 6 Nutella hot cross buns, 3 bags of rolls & a jubilee twist available to collect as much as you like every Sunday!
    Brand new icy pole 'make it yourself' containers all sealed.
    A buy one get one free coupon in the mail for our new sushi place
    I won a raffle on Facebook and recieved a lovely keychain to hang off a bag
    One of my clients gave me an Easter gift of Ferrerro Rochers plus three unused pencil cases, 2 erasers, a packet of pencils and Texas and 2 highlights all new!
    I made fried rice and a zucchini slice and swapped it on the Lets Swap Facebook page for 4 crayfish yes crayfish... I do regular swaps with this lady normally I get Body Shop products
    It goes on and on.. Wendy you have given me that bit of extra motivation I needed. I've always been money consious and a very keen, recycle and reuse people but I've taken it to the next level!
    Forever grateful to you

    1. What a great week you had Mrs Wilson. So many blessings !!!


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