Saturday 23 May 2015

This Week's Frugal Tasks 23rd May 2015

I must admit,  it's been a challenging week to get through.  Jessica hasn't been well for a few weeks but thankfully is much better now.  I had a funeral to go to on Wednesday.  On the way home from picking up the girls from school that day,  we came very close to being in a serious car accident.  I'm very grateful for good brakes on my car that stopped us a few centimetres away from a car that wrongly turned in front of us.  The next day I narrowly missed being hit another two times.  All this sudden stress gave me a massive headache.  I'm very glad that God was watching over us and keeping us safe.  At the moment we have no internet and have been told it could be out for another four days.  I'm using Darren's hot spot on his phone to get internet on my computer.

Through all this stress,  there was a highlight this week.  Last Saturday I had the honour of speaking at Cath's Cheapskate's one day workshop.  It was lovely to meet some of my blog readers and fellow Cheapskaters.  We had such a wonderful time sharing information and learning to live well on a budget.

Here's what else I got up to this week -

*  Gratefully received some sheet music from my blog reader Maureen.  I'll be using it to make some cards.

*  Gratefully received some bread bags and freezer bags from my blog reader Anne.

*  Refilled the foaming hand wash with shower gel and water.

*  Diluted the kitchen detergent by 50%

*  Scraped out the peanut butter jar with a spatula.  There was enough for another piece of toast.

*  Picked two bunches of flowers from my garden to brighten up the kitchen.  I used pasta sauce jars as vases.

*  Gratefully received some cupcakes leftover from Cath's one day Cheapskates workshop last Saturday.

*  Picked silverbeet from our veg garden for two meals.

*  Picked lettuce for a meal of tacos.

*  Made an apple cobbler dessert  from three apples that were looking a bit sad.

*  Made my own version of Season All to use on wedges.  I read the ingredients list on the side of the jar and found that I had most of the ingredients on hand.

*  Refilled the herb and spice jars with the same products bought in bulk.

* Mended a couple of socks with holes in them.  If they need mending again,  I'll be cutting them up to use as garden ties.  I'm almost ready to move on to new socks.

*  Mended a cardigan that had a few very small holes in it.

*  Saved all the washing machine water for each next load.  The shower water was used to water some plants outside.

*  Made lots of peanut butter choc chip biscuits for school lunches.

*  Kept the heater on 18 degrees for two days during daylight hours.

Flowers from our garden

Princess staying off the wet floors
The jars Leesa gave me last week.
Peanut butter choc chip biscuits.
What frugal things did you complete this week ?


  1. Sounds like a great week! I'm glad you are all safe. God is good! I do have a question though how do you save the washing machine water?

    1. I save it into a big bucket at the end of the load. Then I bucket it back in for the start of the next load. Have a look on the Frugal Tasks list dated 11th April 2015. There's a picture there of the bucket.

  2. I'm sorry you have had such a challenging week Wendy. All of these things at once! I hope from this point things are much better. It was a case of it never rains it pours!
    Your flowers are lovely and the sheet music is so nice in cards, especially Christmas cards I think.
    I had a good and busy week and am doing some baking today. Have a good weekend and I hope you get internet back on asap! Xxx

    1. Annabel, I'm looking forward to a brighter week. xoxo

  3. Hi Wendy,

    I'm sorry to hear about your week, best wishes to Jessica on a speedy recovery.
    Your flowers certainly brighten things up and as for Princess, you have her well trained.
    What ever did we do without the internet.....Well anyway, it was wonderful to meet you and chat at last weeks workshop, hope we meet again soon.

    After the Cheapskates workshop, I felt very inspired to get in this week and do more things in the home. But the week started on a bad note when I ran over a screw and they couldn't fix the tyre which I had only bought last year, so $125.00 later. I had my DS1 with me at the time as I was dropping him off at school and he suggested sticking chewing gum where the air was leaking from just so the tyre would get me home and it did. DS2 also had a cold this week but is on the mend. Plenty of Honey and Lemon hot drinks and steam bath inhaling for him.

    I Made: Washing powder, Yogurt, Wendy's KFC (yum!!!), Brown sugar, Choc chip Bickies, Hot chocolate mix and all meals from scratch.
    I blanche heaps of Broccoli and Cauliflower to freeze and cooked heaps of pumpkin up and froze in 1 cup portions for scones.
    Isquashed the toilet rolls (hint from the workshop), shop the specials, saved the washing water and used heaps of the tank water. This week when I showered, I turned off the water as I soaped up hair, body etc, to see how much water I use over the week. BOY! , I saved heaps, must have shorter showers.

    Only had the heater on once during the day as I tried to make use of the oven heat when I was cooking. Instead of meeting a friend for a cuppa out, we walked and had a cuppa at my house.
    Saved two stamps that came on a letter that were not stamp marked (hope this makes sense) to reuse just by soaking it in water then peeling it off and letting it dry.
    Wendy, I started on my price book, but a bit more to go yet.
    Started to dry my Roses I received for mothers day and changed the beds over to flannelette sheets and winter doonas.

    Anyway, off to cleanout the Freezers for Wendy's challenge this week, see if I can find any mystery surprisers.

    Hope you all have a safe, healthy and productive week,

    1. Thankyou Maureen. It was great to meet you too. I'm sure we'll meet again very soon. The price book takes a little while to set up, then it's easy after that.

    2. Hi Maureen,
      Just curious what does DS1 and DS2 mean? I am assuming children but can't figure out the code words :(
      Also I did hear you talking about squashing the toilet rolls, this is going to sound silly but why do you squash them? Is it to fit them in the bin? Lol sorry I feel like I'm sounding silly

    3. I'm not sure if Maureen will see your comment so I hope you don't mind if I reply. DS1 means darling son number 1.

      Squashing the toilet roll before you put it on the holder stops the kids from pulling too hard and leaving toilet paper all over the floor or using too much.

    4. That's fine wendy,
      Ah haaa!
      Lol I had no idea that's what it ment. Learn something new every day :D

      And wow that is a great tip! Because I seem to think ruby gets carried away using toilet paper.
      Might give that a shot for next fortnight. She goes to her dads next week for the week

    5. Thanks Wendy for answering Anne's questions, i only checked today. Yes , the toilet roll squashing works. I have done this since the workshop and i find even i use less, but DH (darling husband ) can't work out why all the toilet rolls lately don't roll smoothly (my little secret for a while) heeee. Hope your well Anne, xxx

  4. I absolutely LOVE those flowers you have picked wendy they look so pretty and up lifting!
    I'm sorry to hear you were almost in a few accidents! That's terrible! Thankfully there was someone watching over you guys and keeping you safe!
    You have done quite a few things this week, I feel like I'm struggling to think of even a few things haha.

    This week I
    Cooked all meals from scratch except 1 unfortunately I buckled even bringing snacks the kids were starving! Ruby had her first try out at calisthenics. She loved it!
    Made quite a large batch of chicken and corn soup now i just need to wiz it up so its ready for either tonight or tomorrow nights dinner
    Have been working a fair bit this week but on my lovely sunny Wednesday off I
    - jumped into the garden FINALLY! And weeded it treated it and also picked quite a few herbs.
    - greatfully gave those herbs to work (the best thing about being a chef) I know they will definitely get used!
    - I threw my compost heap in the compost bin and gave it a big turn
    - went to work and gave my compost bin there quite a big turn. I must say my worms at home look a lot sadder then the ones at work. They are quite nice big fat and juicy! I definitely know they are getting a good feed!
    - tidied up the house a little
    It was miahs 3rd birthday on Wednesday so today I'll be making her a birthday cake ready for tomorrow, will also be making your recipe of museli slice.
    - collected a lot of coffee ground from bistro to put straight into the garden not sure if it will repel any caterpillars slugs or snails but I hope it will but it also means my garden will get some extra goodness!
    I think that's all for now.
    I hope you have a lovely week next week
    Also your very welcome, those bread bags will be of much more use then they are to me and we get them by the loads! So I can continue to collect for you if you like (I'm happy to do that)
    The freezer bags I think will last you quite a while with the amount there but I have more if you do run out :D
    Thanks for sharing your week

    Anne xxxx

    1. Anne, if you get a moment, write your frugal tasks on a piece of paper stuck to the fridge. It helps to jot it down as you complete them.

      I think I'll be right for bread bags for a while. I'll let you know when I'm getting low. The freezer bags are what my girls use in their lunch boxes so they have come in handy.

      Glad you got out into the garden. I bet you felt great getting you hands in the soil. xoxo

  5. Hi Wendy. Glad your angels were looking after you this week. Melbourne can be such a crazy place on the roads at times. Made our snacks for lunches. Managed to get a chrysanthemum plant in bloom for $5 marked down post mothers day from Coles. Got replacement net curtains for $50 from the Salvos ;lots cheaper than new as the window is huge. Cooked every night or at least prepared something the night before instead of having take away after work. Trying to declutter the house more. Picked lettuce for tonight's tacos from my garden. Boy tomatoes are very expensive at the moment. Get Well Soon hugs for Jessica.

  6. Hi Wendy,

    This is the first time I am blogging on your site, so hopefully all goes well. I am happy to say I thoroughly enjoyed attending the informative and entertaining (including the yummy food that was provided) workshop last Saturday. It was a pleasure to meet both Cath and yourself and also like minded cheapskaters. I left with a spring in my step and motivated to try many new things mentioned in the workshop. I am making the Anzac slice today and hopefully it will turn out as well as the one Cath did for Saturday.

    Hope you and the family are a little less stressed as the week has moved on. It certainly gives you a terrible fright when things like this happen, so not surprised to hear of your headaches, I would have been having heart palpitations. My 18 year old daughter is learning to drive and it's so hard trying to stay calm so as not to make her nervous.

    Like you, I also have a side by side fridge/freezer, but find that this is not ample enough. We already upgraded from the normal large fridge/freezer on top type when we installed our new kitchen last year. Soooo, I am on the hunt for a second hand freezer that automatically defrosts to put in the garage to enable me to stockpile meals,etc.

    Also looking for extra shelving to put under the stairs to store my stockpile of specials. Gee Wendy, I was like a woman possessed when shopping this week. I do normally stock up on specials to a degree and look out for bargains, but this week was a different matter. Interesting to note that Coles have an everyday price of those Lipton tea bags for $3.50, whereas Woolies are about a dollar dearer. My local Supa IGA often have some good specials too, and also have a Community Benefit Card that have exclusive specials every week. I think it is 1% of all sales used with this card goes to a charity of your choice which is great.

    On finishing Wendy, if you need any advice, recommendations, etc. on anything to do with kitchens, please don't hesitate to ask. My hubby is an excellent (perfectionist to say the least) home handyman and he installed our whole kitchen himself from a flat pack situation and you wouldn't even know. It enabled us to get 2 pak gloss finish doors/drawers, glass splash backs and caesarstone bench tops which are just fabulous. We were getting quotes of $30,000 from these kitchen places and we paid a little over half that amount. Of course we didn't have to pay labour, only plumbing and some electrical. Such a saving when you can do things yourselves, and often better sometimes, and yes, takes longer.

    Would you be willing to share your peanut butter and choc chip biscuit recipe. They look yummy Wendy.

    Hope you have a stress free week this week.

    Deanne xo

    1. Thankyou for commenting Deanne and thankyou so much for coming to the workshop. We had a blast didn't we. Keep a lookout for a card making get together. When Cath gets back from her holiday she's going to look into organising one.

      You save so much money by shopping the specials, especially when it's things you use. Your stockpile will give you peace of mind.

      Could you please look me up on facebook ? That way when we look at doing our kitchen I'll message you.

      The peanut butter choc chip biscuit recipe will be published shortly.

  7. Hi Wendy,

    Sorry to hear about your week, I had similar experiences over the last 6 months and don't like
    driving long distances these days.

    My local Coles has a huge display of the $1 toothpastes, toothbrushes, mouthwashes, shampoos and conditioners and I already bought 10 each, but will go back tomorrow to buy more.
    This week I cut DH's hair, shopped for specials, made more miracle spray and also
    refilled the foaming handwash bottle with showergel and water.
    Cooked all meals from scratch and made your pasta salad and cranberry biscuits for a family
    gathering (everyone loved it, didn't last long).

    DH is trying to fix a plumbing problem, hasn't worked yet, but DH will go back to Bunnings to
    get more advice.


    1. Yes it is well worth stocking up on those specials.

  8. Hi Wendy. Sorry to hear about your week. I'm happy that your family is safe and I pray that next week provides calm from the stressors of this week. I was wondering how you make the foaming hand wash. Do you use shower/bath gel and dilute it? Do you do this in a normal pump action dispenser? Thanks for your time. Regards, Liz.

  9. Thankyou Liz. The ratios for the handwash are in the cleaning section at the top of the blog. I use a foaming handwash dispenser. Aldi now sells foaming handwash for $1.99. You could buy one of these and keep refilling it.

  10. Hi im really enjoying reading everyone's comments They really inspire me I have had a lovely day Went to a fete at the local school and really enjoyed walking in the sun snd watching lots of happy people having a good time Got some wonderful bargains at the white elephant to use as gifts throughout the year and also to brighten up my kitchen I love school fetes!! Shelley

    1. Fetes are great for buying cheap magazines. Keep a look out for ones you can use to make cards from.

  11. Oh my goodness Wendy, it certainly was a challenging week for you. So glad that you were kept safe.

    I use my jars for vases too. Your flowers are just lovely :)

    I feel it wasn't a very frugal this week. We went to Adelaide on the weekend, and spent quite a lot of money. It was spent on bulk food and household goods from Costco and other shops and markets, but this will last us quite a while so I guess in the long run it is a saving. We stayed in a cabin at a caravan park on the outskirts of town so being cheaper accommodation. We also took our own linen to save money on the nightly charge.



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