Wednesday 4 April 2018

The ' Use It Up ' Challenge Update

For the month of March we've been trying to use up items from around our home.  This is a great way to save money,  declutter and to feel like we are not wasting goods.

During the challenge I used up -

*  One lipstick by digging down to the very bottom with a cotton stick.- Value $8

*  One bar of soap for hand washing instead of refilling the foaming hand soap pump - Value $2

*  Ate 8 single serves of leftovers from the freezer - Value $8

*  Used a few little shampoo and shower gel  bottles - Value $1

*  Decluttered the pantry and put aside items that need using up.  Darren is gradually making his way through the gnocchi,  nuts and rice cakes.  Value - $15

*  Used some guest soaps to add to  decorated hand towels.  This made  lovely packages to sell  at a  craft market a week or so ago.  From my understanding a couple of them sold to the value of about $14.

*  Reorganised the freezers to see what I have.  I wrote a menu plan to include a few bits and pieces - Value $10 in eaten items

Total value for the month $58

We've used a few

Egg custard to use up excess milk and eggs

Using up freezer meals

Did you use up anything from around your home ?


  1. I have a little stash of craft materials and I've been thinking of projects I can make with the yarn and fabric I have. So, I have a two tops and two skirts on the drawing board + a couple more washcloths that will go into my gift tub once they are done. Meg:)

  2. Now that is an egg custard. Would you mind sharing the recipe please?

  3. Good on you Wendy! All these little bits add up over a lifetime. You can buy lipbrushes to get to the bottom of lipstick tubes too. Mimi xxx

    1. I might have a lip brush somewhere in the bathroom cupboard.

  4. This month we took the Use it Up challenge seriously!
    With 2 big bags of green onions that we bought for $1 each that each had over 50 individual green onions in them, we used the green tops in cooking and then saved 3 out! Put those in an old glass yogurt container with water and they have regrow their green tops! I plan to keep snipping them to use in meals and letting them regrow indefinitely! The rest of the green onions, I planted outside in my veggie garden! Even though it has snowed on them 4 times since I planted them, they are all alive and new green tops are poking out!!

    I made beef stroganoff the other night and used up some plain yogurt in my fridge as a sour cream substitute! After I portioned the leftovers into individual meal containers for lunches or another dinner, I still had leftover plain cooked noodles! So those went into a taco casserole that I made for dinner a couple nights later! 2 dinners from one (or was that more like 3 meals?)

    I turned the rest of the leftover plain yogurt into individual fruit yogurt- caramel apple, raspberry and strawberry using up jam in the fridge. Yummy breakfasts and snacks!

    Today at my produce market, I bought (for $2) a box with a 5 pound bag of mixed salad greens and 6 “artisan living lettuce” in plastic clamshell containers. I will use the lettuce but then plant the lettuce bases that have roots already!! Free lettuce!!!

    I’ve been using up flannel scraps in my stash to make flannel reuseable Kleenex! Besides the dozen I made for our house, I made an additional 130 that I have for sale. Within the first week, I had sold 30 of them and my scraps that were taking up room in my sewing room have now been used up and converted into cash!!!

    We just finished building another bookcase from deck joists that we were given. It was great being able to make something useful and beautiful out of wood that might have otherwise been thrown away! Plus it put another $200 into our savings because we built this for a client!

    All the leftover apple cores that we had from eating fresh apples got chopped up and given to our chickens! That in turn was converted into eggs that they laid for us!! 17-1/2 dozen eggs in March!!

    Using it up is kind of a family theme that we try to live by!! Thanks for the motivation to actually think more about eliminating waste and making complete use of everything we are blessed with!!!

    1. WOW !!! What a list. I'm so impressed with what you both achieve. I'm so glad your Kleenex are selling.

  5. Well done that girl! I love to hear of other's frugalling.

  6. I have been using up the freezer meals. A bottle of pump foundation's lid won't come off so by immersing the bottle in warm to hot water prior to using I have been able to keep using it for months. I don't wear make up daily. Robynne

  7. Hi Wendy,

    You are doing so well with the use it up challenge!

    A freezer overhaul is on my to do list! I need to sort through it and start using up what is in there. I also like to use up any remaining fruit, vegetables and leftovers etc in the fridge before buying more.

    That is a nice big egg custard! YUMMO!


  8. Can I also ask for the egg custard recipe please if it's an easy one?

    Thanks very much,


  9. Hi everyone. The egg custard recipe is in the recipe section at the top of the blog. It's in the dessert section. Enjoy.

    1. You are again my inspiration!! I will use some of my abundant supply of eggs and try this custard! It looks so good and, looking at your recipe, I have all the ingredients on hand! And with the magic of the Internet, I can have Google convert the measurements into our US equivalents! 😉. Thanks again!!!

  10. Put chickpeas, lentils etc on the bench so I would be reminded to use them in meals, I’ve found in the cupboard they were out of sight out of mind, some of them are past B.B. date but still good, made a risotto with garlic, Parmesan and tuna to use some arborio rice. Have gone through dried herbs and spices and put them out to use.
    Used the leftover glacé fruit from Christmas in a fruit loaf. My husband laughed at me when I heated the leftover honey in the microwave, poured in the milk shook it up then poured over my breakfast porridge, yes I was determined to use every skerrick. Found some old exercise books from when my daughters were at school, have been using the paper for shopping and to do lists.
    Have repurposed olive oil tin and galvanised rubbish bins for plants , saving buying expensive pots.
    Looking forward to seeing what else can be used up in this challenge..

  11. I used a bunch of samples that I had gotten a while ago in the mail, Shampoo, conditioner and body wash. I used a bar of hotel soap at both bathroom sink. I finished a small bottle of lotion and cut it open to get the rest. I also used little bits of fruits from the freezer for a fruit compote. Some bits of veggies from the freezer were used in omelets and soup. I had a bunch of Ziplocs washed because of all of the items from my freezer.

  12. Inspired by the chat yesterday about this challenge, today I used up biscuit crumbs I’d been given , moo condensed milk, cooking chocolate from the cupboard , and 60gm butter to make a slice to take away on a car club run next week.


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