Saturday 18 July 2015

This Week's Frugal Tasks 18th July 2015

With the weather being so cold this week  I've tried to stay busy on my days at home.  I just love cooking and baking good wholesome food for my family and as Annabel says " feathering my nest ".  I had a lovely day with Cath form the Cheapskates Club.  Of course we talked about all things frugal as well as the up coming Adelaide workshop.  So exciting  !!!  Here's what else I got up to this week -

*  Made a couple of cards for my stash.

*  Made up lots of biscuits using a packet mix bought after Christmas for 5 cents. It was meant to be a gingerbread house but I don't have time for such a fiddly thing.

*   Emptied the bottom of the wheat bix packet into the Dried Seasoned Bread Crumbs container and gave it a good shake.

*  Kept the curtains 90% closed during the cold days.  They were open just enough so that we could see our way around the house.

*  Hand washed the dinner dishes a few time this week.

*  Fed the chickens handfuls of grass and clover to keep their vitamins up during the cold weather

*  Finished using up two lipsticks by digging down into the tube to get every last bit of it.  I got another 6 weeks use out of each one.

*  Found an old eye shadow in my travel toiletry bag that didn't have enough in it to take away.  So I've put it in the bathroom cupboard and have been using it every day.

*  Bought my mum a bunch of flowers for her birthday.  The tissue paper the florist used went soggy straight away and wasn't a nice color.  So I used some of my stash of florist colored plastic wrap to make it look better with craft ribbon I had on hand.  Gave my mum a handmade card from my supplies.

*  .Made a bulk batch of fruit crumble topping mix.

*  Redeemed a rain check for 4 litres of Moro olive oil for $20.  I've had this rain check for almost 12 months but waited until I was low on stock in the pantry ( and I needed the room to store it ).

*  Wiped out the fridge using water and a microfibre cloth.  I saved the water from rinsing out the cloth and used it to water some pot plants outside.

*  Came in under budget for groceries from June 16 - July 15.  I only spent $237 out of $270.  The left over money went into the food slush fund to buy future food specials.

*  Bought lots of chicken fillets from Tasman Meats for $5.99kg.  They were portioned into meal sizes and frozen.

*   Made a double batch of pumpkin scones using cooked and mashed pumpkin I'd frozen last year when it was cheap.

*  Saved the washing machine water and dried most of the clothes on clothes horses.

*  Made 1 litre of homemade yoghurt.

*  Froze 3 single serves of left over meals.  I'm trying to get a stash together as next Tuesday is the last of my major dental work.  I'll only be able to eat pureed vegetable soup and custard for a few days so I won't be wanting to cook for the family.

My 5 cent gingerbread biscuits for church morning tea.
My favourite morning tea.
One of the cards I made.
Left overs for the freezer
Making my own yoghurt.
What frugal things did you complete this week ?  I'd love for you to share your list.


  1. My oven stopped working so I rearranged what I was planning to make for morning tea on Tuesday and went for cake in a mug instead of chocolate raspberry muffins. Still trying to decide whether to fix it, replace it or if we can bring the kitchen reno forward.

    Stayed out of supermarkets, even for the specials. The pantry is full, the freezer is still almost full and there is nothing except fresh milk on my shopping list.

    Transferred the small amounts of moisturiser and toner left in the bottom of the bottles that I couldn't get out easily into the new bottles. Now I can use every drop.

    Kept the first stoked and the ducted heating off. House has been warm, most noticeably in the early mornings.

    Closed the blinds and curtains as soon as the temperature started to drop in the afternoons and kept them closed a little longer in the mornings

    Accepted a petrol discount voucher from Mum and used it to get petrol for $123.4c yesterday. I haven't been shopping for 7 weeks so I didn't have any vouchers.

    Opened some new soaps and put them through the linen cupboard and the shelves in my wardrobe to harden before using. They'll also freshen the cupboards and help to keep any bugs that dare to try invade away.

    Spent an hour with my garden book planning the spring garden and working out the sowing and planting schedule for spring.

    Sorted my card supplies and tidied them up then made some Christmas cards and a few gift cards to match the Christmas themed wrapping paper for this year.

    That's about it, or at least all I can remember. Living frugally is a habit so lots of the things we do are automatic but I'd hate to see how much our budget would blow out if we didn't do them.

    1. The cake in a cup and lunch were very yummy Cath. I don't think i'd survive long without an oven.

      I've stayed away from the shops too. Darren has only bought milk, bananas, potatoes and cream over the last 3 - 4 weeks.

  2. Hi Wendy,
    You always manage to get do much done.... I like reading your posts as there is no pressure on us to conform but you are setting an example we can follow if we are smart enough to take notice...thanks...
    This week I have not done much as Hubby and I are still in holiday mode...thats over next week :-(
    • cooked all our food at home
    • Made bread
    • Made yoghurt
    • Dried the clothes on a clothes horse
    • Made some Christmas gifts
    • Made some cheese, had some on toast (homemade bread) this morning
    • Kept the whey for bread making
    • Saved the cereal box liners for future use when freezing meat etc
    • Visited the library and borrowed Jackie French's book on sustainable living... I have borrowed it so often Hubby has decided I should have a copy of my own. He purchased one online from Britain that was half the price of all other secondhand stores on line... It should arrive next week Yay.
    • Made biscuits
    • Won $100 (that will be put into savings)

    Just putting out there to you and Cath... Canberra is a pretty place in Spring and Autumn.... ideal time for a seminar. Just saying lol. And if you do it next year I will have time to save for it....

    1. HI Linda. I post every frugal thing i do in case it gives someone a light bulb moment

      I'd love to make cheese. But first I want to learn to make soap. All in good time.

      We'll come to Canberra if 35 - 40 people are willing to come xoxo

  3. Today is my grocery shopping day so I'm checking my cupboards and freezer first.

    My list looks pretty frugal though :)

    This week I,

    Dried all washing on the clothes airer.
    Made your Muesli Slice but also added pepitas and some nuts in with the dried fruit.
    Made the best cream of mushroom soup. DH asked me to make some and I had managed to get 500g of mushrooms for $2.75 - the recipe only need 250 grams so I'll make up another batch today (DH actually ate the whole pot and also used up the last remnants of bread that I normally would put in the freezer for breadcrumbs - no waste) I'll also make up some more tomato soup as I can't seem to keep up with the demand for this.
    Cleaned the house with microfibre cloths.
    Took lunch and morning tea to work each day.
    Gratefully accepted some pizzas leftover from a luncheon at DH's work - he was very popular with DD.

    Have a great week.

    Cheers Deb

    1. The soups would be wonderful in this weather. Could you make big pots and freeze some that your DH doesn't know about ?

  4. Gee whiz Wendy, you have had a very good week.

    Those ginger bread cookies look yum, so do the pumpkin scones.

    You are going ahead leaps and bounds with your card making; you have that special crafty touch.
    I have had a busy week this week. I am getting in early by doing some spring cleaning. Not much else to do in this cold weather.

    ~I cooked all meals at home, except for last night. The kids (adults) enjoyed making their own.

    ~Washed and line dried clothes between showers this week. A couple of days I had to finish items off in front of the fire.

    ~I dried some more breadcrumbs and put into jars.

    ~Saved pre sink water and added to the washing machine water. I collect it over a few days in a bucket. As I don’t own a dishwasher, I collect 2 ltrs of water every time I do the dishes. My washing machine is a twin tub. This type of machine saves water wastage because I use one lot of water for the whole wash. I must start saving the water from the shower for the same purpose. I water pot plants with the water I save too.

    ~I saved my sons leftover water bottle contents (2ltr) for using for plants or laundry. I give him fresh rainwater every day.

    ~For my dishes I have also started using the hot water in the kettle that sits on our fire. The water gets boiling hot so ideal for using. I used it for cleaning jobs as well, like spot cleaning my carpet and washing windows.

    ~Sorted through my freezer and threw out some things that were getting a bit old. The chooks got most of it, so not really wasted. I rearranged things so I am able to find items better. This is an ongoing task as chest freezers are difficult to organise.

    ~I made two batches of Greek yoghurt this week. I used extra to make some garlic flavoured flat bread to have with chicken laksa.

    ~I had three no spend days this week.

    Wishing you a lovely weekend,


    1. I love twin tub washing machines Tania. My Mum had one when I was growing up. They save so much water. Apparenting they are still popular in Germany. I tried to get one years ago but they weren't available here.

      Thankyou for your kind words re - me being crafty. I don't feel that I am. There are so many things to learn. I do like giving new crafts a go. I did work for a drafting company years ago drawing house plans and I did graphics and art in high school. I think these things gave me an eye for placement / colors etc.

    2. twin tubs Wendy,

    3. Thankyou Linda. I'll have a look. Not that I will need one in the near future as my washing machine is 3 years old. But it's nice to look.

    4. Twin tubs! My Nan had one and I loved it! What a water saver! I had forgotten them. I would love one too!

  5. Hi wendy,
    You've had a really good frugal week!
    This week I been trying to rest when Elisha sleeps but can't do a lot of that with the other kids.

    Cooked all meals from scratch and ate single serve leftovers I froze for my lunch meals.

    Stuart senior and I went into the garden and picked some chillies together. Gave us some alone time, even though it wasn't for long but still good.

    Tidied up the kitchen a little

    Managed to live off $200 this week I haven't been out much so haven't really spent. I put half my pay away. Trying to challenge myself with saving heavily.

    That's about it I haven't written my frugal tasks down for a few weeks but hopefully I can start doing that again soon.

    Hope you have a lovely week next week wendy! Xoxox

    1. Anne, it's hard getting sleep when you have other kids in the house. I hear you and remember what it was like. I'm sure you enjoyed your few moments in the garden together and the fresh air would have done you a world of good.

    2. It definitely is, it was great! Loved the fresh air. Although it's getting really cold.

  6. This week I've baked cakes,made yoghurt and made soups which cost next to nothing with veg scraps, chicken carcass and soup mix.
    It was the start of the new grocery month and shopping day this week and I'm trying out a new system of putting the $300 cash in a snap lock bag and using it. I think it might be easier than keeping track of what I've spent with credit cards etc. We've stuck to the limit for 6 months so far.
    Bought movie tickets for kids from RACV for $8.75 as opposed to $17-$18.
    Continuing to car pool on two regular weekly kids activities this term which saves us time and $$
    Treated the dreaded head lice several times with the nit comb and the Fruits conditioner I had previously bought on special for $1 - definitely not fun, but frugal.
    Having guests for dinner and cooking up a roast chicken with one of the $2 ones I bought last week.

    1. Head lice are NOT fun. So glad my girls haven't had them for years.

      I found it easier to have the $300 cash for groceries. You'll find once you see the money going you'll be thinking twice about what you put in the trolley. Well done for sticking to the $300. That's a major achievement.

  7. this week all washing has been dried on clothes airers over the heating vents, dries the clothes and adds moisture to the air.
    dresses in layers and turned the heater down a couple of degrees everytime DH wasn't watching(he has the flu so is feeling the cold)
    made 3 loaves of bread, unfortunately 1 had to be thrown away as I forgot to add yeast and it was like a wet brick lol.
    bought some buttons to replace the missing ones on my 20yr old wool coat.
    used the lint shaver on the flannelette sheets, then put them in the dryer for a few minutes, new feeling sheets for minimal cost.
    all meals cooked from scratch even though a couple of times I didn't feel like it after late doctor's appts for DH
    finally finished shortening some curtains for the dining area, they have been up for a few weeks with pins to get the hem at the right level
    started working out the next fortnight's meal plan and shopping list, this starts on Tuesday, and I have written out a list of things that I need to stock up on when they come on special

    1. You've had a well rounded frugal week Maggie. Could you freeze left overs for nights that you can't cook ? I find it a big help and a huge money saver.

    2. Wendy I usually have something in the freezer but lately they all seem to be mystery packages lol, it's only a fridge/freezer. I have tidied it up today ready for some more homemade bread and I will be cooking extra this week so that there will be a couple of meals in there.

    3. I use masking tape to label packages and containers. Might help you xoxo

  8. Dear Wendy, we had a good week. I reviewed things, my emergency fund, my Christmas present making, bills, tax etc. so I feel on top of things.
    Used up lemons to make lemon butter, made several deserts using that and as a gift.
    Made another Christmas present. Added to my pantry with some specials. Overall it was pretty good.
    Also very cold and wet but today we had a few house sun and I got the sheets dry!
    I hope we all have a good week next week. The little efforts really add up over a week! With love

    1. Annabel, it's always good to review the budget. Fine tuning is the key as some areas change and needs can be different.

      I look forward to seeing photos of your Christmas presents. xoxo

  9. I've been toying with the idea to make my own yoghurt. Obviously, the EsiYo system is a good one. My mother in law has one so I might borrow it and give it a go.

    1. Joolz, making your own is easy and much cheaper than store bought. Perhaps try your Mother in law's one first with a packet then move onto making your own from scratch.

  10. Hi Wendy

    Well you certainly managed a lot in one week.

    It has been cold here and today I finally relented to putting the air con (heater) on for 15 minutes as it was -2 here last night and only 1 when I woke this morning. It took the chill out as our house is tiled in the main living areas except the lounge.

    This week I have

    Stocked up on some specials
    Dried all clothes outside in the sun
    Make muffins for DD5 lunches
    DP bought his excess fruit home from work (so less fruit needed to be bought)
    Made my own pizza bases and froze 1 for next time
    Mostly used a blanket when I was cold
    Saved leftovers from 3 dinners
    Checked out my superannuation to see how it was fairing
    Used up some more of the lemons that were given to me
    Made a few birthday cards

    All in all a good week for us
    Hope you enjoy a wonderful week ahead


    1. Did you freeze the left overs Aly ? I'm starting to get a collection again. Soon I can write it into the menu plan..

    2. Yes Wendy I did freeze the leftovers. With DP being away at work for 4 or 5 days a week I find the leftovers a blessing cause having to get DD5 off to and helping her with homework and all other activities, then I use them up whilst he is away to save me one job

  11. Hi Wendy,

    I had a busy week with DS2's Birthday and his football (50 games) but managed to do lots of things.

    I made Mini Quiches, Zucchini slice, Pasta Noodle sauce mix, Hot Chocolate drink mix, seasoned breadcrumbs, double batch of Spag bolg and Napoli sauce.
    We were given 6 loaves of bread and 4 cup cakes and I cut flowers from the garden to bring inside to brighten this up.

    I had DS2's birthday this week and made an ice cream cake for him and we had dinner out and I used a voucher we were given as a present knocking $50.00 off the total price of the meal, so the meal came to $40.00 which was budgeted for.

    As my DS2's 50 games of football was today, during the week I made him a banner using crepe paper and letters printed off the internet, total cost $2.00 and if I had of had this made, it would have cost maybe around $90.00. We took all our own snacks and a themos to the game.

    I had a doctors appointment this week and as I have a bad back, she suggested she writes me out a care plan for 5 visits to my Osteo where I get treatment at very little cost. A visit could cost $60.00 normally, but on the care plan $17.00.
    I saved a cereal box for my price book and the bag inside.

    I also signed up for the Salvo's club card where each time you shop there, you earn points. Students on Wednesdays get 20% off, they have $2.00 Mondays and different colour tags each week means 50% off. The link is

    I signed up for Cath's Card making workshop also during the week and I am looking forward to this very much as your cards are looking better and better Wendy.
    Your amazing with your grocery budget and what a great idea making Gingerbread bickies out of the gingerbread house mix.

    Anyway, have a great week all,
    Blessings, Maureen

    1. You've had a busy few weeks Maureen. Congrats to your DS2. I saw the photos on fb.

      I'll look into the Salvos club link. Thanks.

      Can't wait to catch up with you again at the card making arvo. Joyofquilting will be there ( my Dad's cousin ) and Anne from here.


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