Saturday 8 October 2016

This Week's Frugal Tasks Saturday 8th October 2016

Rain,  rain,  rain.  We've had lots of rain in Melbourne this week.  I just kept plodding along doing what I could in my home to save a little money here and there.

Thankyou to everyone for your birthday wishes here and on facebook. It was an interesting day with half my family at work and the AFL grand final on in the afternoon.  I spent the day making greeting cards and taking it easy ( I've come down with another sore throat ).  Jessica made me a lovely pot of tea and served it on a fancy tray with a vintage china cup and saucer.

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

*  Made a roast leg of lamb stretch for 12 serves.  We had it as a roast meal for my birthday on Saturday.  On Monday I made the leftover meat into a lamb stew that fed us for two nights.

*  Saved lots of shower warm up water to water all our pot plants.  The washing machine water was saved for each next load.

*  Saved a couple of gift bags and tissue paper from presents.

*  Gave a friend a jar of jam and a rose soap from the present cupboard.  I also made the birthday card to suit the friend's favourite colors.  It feels great to give handmade and homemade things.  I know this friend will use the gifts.

*  Picked silverbeet for a couple of meals.

*  Lined my bathroom bin with lots of bread bags.

*  Sold two dozen eggs to a friend.

*  Bought our raspberry and mango plants ( in pots ) out from under the pergola to get a good watering from the rain.

*  Planted quite a few hellebore ( winter roses ) seedlings into little pots to nurture.  We received them from our stay at the cottage on the farm.  Come next Autumn we can plant them in the garden.

*  Went to Masters Hardware store for their 20 - 50% off sale.  There wasn't much on offer as prices are still dearer than elsewhere.  Darren picked up a few bits and pieces and I bought two punnets of lettuce seedlings and a few small tarps.  I like to use tarps in the car boot to protect the lining from dirt and grime.

*  Darren,  myself and our girls went to Tesselaars Tulip festival in Monbulk for my birthday treat.  We all took water bottles to help offset some of the food costs..

*  Picked another big bowlful of lemons from our tree.

*  Dried all the washing on clotheshorses ( except the sheets ). It's rained most days this week so I couldn't use the clothesline.

*  Turned the heater off for a couple of days.

*  Made four cards to sell using what I had on hand.

*  Darren saved us approximately $400 on our two car insurances due shortly.  We never accept the price the company says we have to pay.  Darren does an online quote and asks for a better deal.

*  I only spent $2 on groceries ( milk ) this week.

Here are some photos from our afternoon at Tesselaars Tulip Festival.  It was a very windy afternoon ( hence the wayward hairdos ).

I'm sorry I didn't reply to the comments from last week's frugal tasks.  I wasn't well on Saturday, we were out all day Sunday and I was at work on Monday.

What frugal tasks did you complete this week ?


  1. Good morning Wendy , I hope you feel better soon, you have had a great week and I hope that despite your illness , your birthday was enjoyable. The tulips look beautiful, I hope you and your family had a lovely time.
    My week included:
    I gratefully Received a large savoury mince and vegetable pie from my parents which fed me for two dinners and two lunches. I also gratefully received some homemade pumpkin soup from my parents and 2 serves of bolognese sauce.
    I refilled my foaming hand wash with hand soap refill that I bought last year for $2.40 for 500ml I have used only a third of the bottle since late last year, I topped it up with water( in the foaming hand wash pump) .
    I bought my favourite tea bags half price , saving $16.50 on 3 boxes. I saved $20 in my bank for Christmas .
    I bought a new purse for less than half price.
    I am sharing the cost of some gifts with my mum, that way we are able to buy the gift we want to buy between us rather than having to pay for it by ourselves.
    I will make cards for my dad's birthday and my parents 48 th wedding anniversary which are both coming up in the next week.
    I think that is it Wendy. I hope you and your family have a lovely weekend.
    Love BarbW.

    1. I'm glad you are still making cards Barb. Make sure you post photos on the Cheapskates forum. I'd love to see them.

  2. Happy belated birthday wishes Wendy. The tulips are amazing.... what a great outing for your family. Your frugal list continues to inspire... I am harvesting, cooking and freezing spinach and silver beet, picking oranges, lettuce, beetroot and broad beans. Busily using up foods rather than doing a grocery shop until really necessary (slush fund is looking healthy). Incredible what a little imagination can do with all sorts of leftovers, frozen goodies and "odd" ingredients. Making soup and pizza dough for the freezer and making quite a few scrappy baby quilts for my gift stash. Love being busy...Cheers

    1. What gifts are you making Jo ? Could you please posts some photos on the Cheapskates forum ?

      Sounds like you've been busy in the kitchen and garden.

  3. hmmm...that's two bouts of being sick in a month. Maybe you just need to slow it down a bit and regenerate yourself. Self care.

    1. Thanks Phil. I have slowed right down and getting lots of sleep. I think it's all those people who go out when they are sick and don't put their hand over their mouth when they sneeze / cough. So rude of them.

  4. I absolutely must know how your family only uses 2L of milk in a week? Do you use powdered milk to substitute or did you already have milk in the fridge/pantry?

    1. Heidi, I have one daughter who has switched to soy milk for cuppas and buys her own. I haven't done any baking for a few weeks due to being unwell and renos.

      We also have toast for breakfast instead of cereal. Yes we do have powdered milk that we use from time to time. I just think our eating / drinking habits have changed lately. We've never been a family that drinks glassful after glassful of milk. When the girls were little they had one cup a day plus cheese and yoghurt.

      We do drink lots of water.

  5. Hi Wendy, the Tulip festival looks lovely! we've been busy ourselves the last couple of weeks. Here's what we've been up to in the last week or so:
    - I've been putting left over steamed veggies from dinner into my salads as part of my lunch. There wasn't enough to save for another dinner so I've been using them up this way.
    - Turned old crusty bread rolls into yummy croutons for salads and soups.
    - Haven't used the heater at all since it has been so warm lately
    - Used the dryer as little as possible
    - We've been doing up our backyard and done a lot of the labor ourselves (and getting friends and family to help). This reduce the cost substantially.
    - Started buying Christmas presents early this year with all the great sales on. Saved over $200 already by shopping early. Still well under budget for our Christmas gift fund. I only have two more people to buy for.
    - Gratefully received a chocolate cake and two dozens of eggs.
    - Planted our veggie patch for Spring (we had to wait for yard work to finish).
    - Gratefully received kale seeds to plant in our veggie patch.
    - Got free samples of nappies from Huggies
    -Made more laundry powder

    I'm sure I did other frugal things but I can't remember! Have a good week Wendy !


    1. It can be hard to remember all the frugal things we do Amy.

      Chocolate cake and eggs are a great blessing.

      Do you have plans for your leftover Christmas present money ? I usually top up my food slush fund and put some money away for the Boxing Day sales.

    2. We have thought about putting it towards our food fund (which is actually doing really well) in case we are hosting Christmas this year. However we have been thinking about getting a bee hive (stingless bees) which would be great for our veggie patch/garden and we would get home grown honey too! I'll have to wait a little and see how under the budget we go and what Christmas plans are!


  6. Dear Wendy,

    Sorry to hear you have been unwell, hope you are back to normal again now. There have been terrible colds/flus going around, so far I have not caught any and I hope it stays that way :)

    The tulips look so beautiful as does your family.

    My frugal tasks this week were:

    *I have been out in the garden getting things organised. I have planted some seedlings and now just waiting for them to grow. I have in capsicums, two types cucumbers, tomatoes, kale, silver beet, spring onions, chives, strawberries.
    *Cooked all meals from scratch.
    *Washed laundry in cold water.
    *Hung washing in the nice sunlight.
    *I was gifted a Bissel carpet cleaner that was only used a couple of times. I am so happy about this as I was about to purchase one of these. I need to clean my cream carpet regularly. Now I can do it myself and save more money :)
    *I was also gifted a serving tray, teatowels and chocolates.
    *Picked and drying quandongs.
    *Drying some lavender.
    *Made some Greek yoghurt twice this week.
    *Picked up fruit bread on special.
    *Cleaned the bathrooms using homemade cleaner.
    *Still picking mandarins and oranges. These are used for juice in the mornings.
    *Sold eight dozen eggs this week, the girls are laying really well!
    *Made homemade pizzas last night.

    Wishing you a lovely week,


    1. Wow !!! You received some great blessings this week. Bissel is a good brand for carpet cleaning products.

      I can taste those mandarins Tania. I might just have to come over to SA after it's dried out and do a workshop - giggle, giggle.

  7. It's so nice that you posted those lovely tulip pictures. Here, where I live in Oregon, USA, we have large fields of tulips in our spring. I haven't gone to the tulip festival for a few years, and your pictures reminded me of how beautiful it was. Maybe I'll remember to go this year when spring comes around again!

    I hope your cold gets better. Although colds are not serious, they are seriously annoying and make daily life so much more difficult! So, hope it goes away quickly.

    1. Thankyou Becky. I'm feeling much better. I just have a little cough now.

  8. Sorry to here you are still not well, take it easy this week. Please can you send me some of your rain the ground water is now at least a foot down, I dropped a cane down one of the cracks and it went down 13 inches.
    I don't seem to have done much this week, I shopped at Aldi as usual and dried the washing outside. I managed to get a free water filter jug by buying a years worth of fiters. I made 4 christmas puddings while I can still use the kitchen. I made yoghurt and bread but no cakes this week as there are plenty in the freezer. I bought soap and opened the packets they will be stored in he airing cupboard to dry out, it makes them last a lot longer. I cleaned up the garden after the greenhouse came down and left the metal out for the scrap man to take. I have bought a couple of christmas presents and am looking to buy my grandson 4 from the local auction rooms if I can get it for a good price. I always look at the auction to see if there is anything we need ,it usually come out about half as much as buying new and dark funiture is sold at give away prices.
    The tiler comes on Monday so chaos will comence, the greenhouse man will put in the footings on Tuesday, so it is all go here.
    Best wishes from the UK

    1. You still had a good week Chris. I quite often watch tv shows about the auction rooms over there. It's very interesting.

  9. Here's what I did last week, other than the usual:

    (1) Made a trip to the bread overstock/thrift store this week and bought enough bread for 3-4 weeks. I always buy lots of bread at one time and freeze it.

    (2) I have a prescription for 90 mg. of a drug per day. Since it isn't dispensed as 90 mg., I have been getting it filled as one 60 mg. and one 30. That's two co-pays per month. I discovered my insurance company would fill it as three 30 mg. for only one co-pay. Buying it this way will save me $84 per year in co-pays.

    (3) I renewed my car license for two years instead of one and saved $3.50.

    We have been having a bunch of professional landscaping done this week. I was given a 10x10 or 10x12 place at the end of the driveway and told to fill it with plants, LOL. I bought another 100 tulip bulbs at Costco for $12 and am filling in with divisions of my own and various friends' perennial plants. I estimate the total cost will be $12.

    Your tulip pictures are lovely...they encourage me to plant now for next spring!

    1. That's such a great price for tulips. They can cost a small fortune here otherwise we'd have a tulip festival in our own backyard.

  10. Beautiful photos! Have a great week ♥

  11. I made a typo--that was 50 tulip bulbs, not 100.

    Also, I mended a cloth shopping bag that pulled out of the binding. Just went around it with a 3-step zigzag stitch. I am big on "make do and "mend."

  12. Hi Wendy,

    Sorry to hear you haven't been well. Your photos at the Tulip festival look beautiful.

    This week I did my monthly shop, menu plan and sorted out freezers.
    Saves shower water, did some gardening and as the terrible winds yesterday hit our greenhouse, I had to pull out all the Broccoli, cook and put into the freezer.
    Heater was off for most of the week and I dried most of the washing on the line.
    I received another card order and made a few more cards for events I was attending.

    Have a great week,

  13. Hi Wendy, this might be a long shot but do you know anywhere in Melbourne that sells fruits or veg in bulk? Please let me know

    1. Markets are your best bet. I see restaurants loading up supermarket trollies. The Dandenong Market is the best value I've seen. Cheaper than the Vic or Caribbean Market

  14. Such pretty pictures from the tulip festival!
    Last week I worked to rebuild my pantry since we had to "eat it down" before we moved. I bought ground beef on sale and made meat loaf, patties, and cooked ground meat for the freezer. I also made a double batch of chai tea mix for the pantry and for gifts. This week a nearby store has a different meat sale so I hope to get some boneless hams for the freezer.
    Blessings, Leigh

    1. It's wonderful you can buy mince on sale. It's quite expensive here and we have to ration it out.

  15. Hi Wendy!!!

    My name is kylie... I'm a 23yr old mother of a beautiful 5yr old and partnered to a wonderful man who I proudly called my best friend. Im from a little town called Lipson in South Australias Eyre Peninsula. I'm very interested in all your endeavors to save money as this is something that is much needed in my life and I feel passionate about becoming self sustainable to make my life and that of my loved ones better. As you would know us young ones can be quite good at running our bank accounts into the ground and Having recently had some major obstacles in my life it's really made me realise how being wise with our every dollar and making every resource in OUR lives is so important, its a lifestyle and I believe if you put enough time into it the rewards certainly speak for themselves and it's something that the whole family can get invloved in and all become passionate about.I had to recently come off work due to an injury that occured which has meant my partner has had to pay for all expenses, my god it's such a shock to the system when you are so used to have a certain amount come in every fortnight to literally...nothing! Anyway I recently returned from Tasmania from seeing my partner as he is currently working over there and because I needed a Holiday too because I have been so burntout from my job and trying to run a constant uphill battle with life and the lifestyle I choose, sometimes we want nothing more then to succeed in life that we forget all about what's good for us and what's not. Anyhow on my trip to Tassie it completely opened up my eye's to how much we have the ability to do things for ourselves.... I went to the Salamanca markets with my partner and little boy and it is such a crafty interesting place to be. You must go one day if you haven't already been! It was especially nice because my partner also likes to make things which is why it appears I am fascinated at how we can use materials in day to day life to fully enrich our lives.... and when i say materials I really mean resources! It's such a nice feeling knowing that you can obtain comfort and security in life by using what we have infront of us and making the most of it.. this is what life is all about!
    It was by random that I decided to have a look at this site of yours and I'm so very glad that I did,thank you for sharing all your secrets with me I trully appreciate it...
    I was wondering if anyone could tell me how hard it is to make homemade soap and if it's all all possible, im really into all things natural. I love bush medicine and anything that's grown from the dirt really... please any suggestions would be muchly appreciated

    Kindest regards,

    Kylie Anne Brooks

    1. Kylie Anne, making soap is not hard but you need to be careful of the caustic soda. I have a recipe here on my blog. Follow the instructions carefully and you should be fine.


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