Saturday 21 December 2019

My Latest Frugal Tasks List Nov / Dec 2019

It's been over a month since I last posted my frugal task list.  Life has been a bit of a roller coaster with a family member in hospital after suffering a stroke just before starting a new,  stronger round of chemo treatment.  She's recovered quite well from the stroke but the chemo has knocked her about a little.  We are grateful for all the prayers from caring people around the world.  God is watching over our family.

I've tried to be frugal when time and energy has allowed me to be.  We did get takeaway once or twice when we got tired of frozen leftovers in the freezer.  Some days I was on the go from sun up until sun down and Darren was quite happy to get fish and chips to make life a little easier ( no dishes to wash ).

Here's my frugal list of things I remembered to write down -

*  Saved Luka's bath water and bucketed it into the washing machine.

*  Made up two bottles of diluted Dynamo laundry liquid.

*  Saved the washing machine final rinse water and poured it into the machine for the next load.

*  Refilled the foaming hand wash pumps around the house with diluted shower gel.

*  Made a couple of batches of chicken stock in the slow cooker when a cooked chicken came into our home via the girls or shopping day.

*  Picked bunches of iceberg roses from our garden to brighten up our home.  There's no point in buying flowers that wilt within a couple of days when we can pick flowers for free that last longer.

*  I was a very good girl this Christmas season and didn't buy any decorations for our tree.  This would be the first time in 24 years of marriage.  I love Christmas and all the festivities,  but we don't need any decorations and they just didn't appeal to me.  They all seemed cheap and tacky this year.

*  Made 2 batches of lemon butter to have on my toast each morning.  I ran out of homemade jam a couple of months ago and don't like buying it ( I don't like the taste ).  I have plenty of lemon juice in the freezer and we still have one chicken laying so the lemon butter is quite cheap to make.

*  Picked silverbeet as much as possible to have with many meals as our green vegetable.

*  Used a 20% off discount coupon to buy a doona cover for Luka for about $6.  It's an Elmo doona cover in very good condtion and will be a bright addition to his bedroom when he goes into a big boy's bed late next year.

*  Darren picked the last of the hot pink roses from our garden for my bedside table.  We could smell their  scent  all throughout the house.

*  Made choc chip biscuits for afternoon tea snacks.

*  Gave Megan a haircut.

*  Picked strawberries from the garden to have with icecream a couple of night after dinner.

*  Made a big batch of sausage rolls using sausage mince I bought for $1.99 kg earlier this year.

*  Printed off a few photos to frame for Christmas presents.  The frames came from op shops for $1.

*  Made a large batch of spag bol sauce.  We ate some for dinner that night and froze the rest into serves for two.  This became our ' go to meal ' on busy days.

*  Used wrapping paper I already had to design this year's Christmas cards.

*  Froze leftovers of Massaman beef curry,  lamb and veg soup and chicken and veg soup.

*  Cooked up the last of a hoarded leg of lamb ( from last Spring ).  After having it for dinner,  I froze the leftover meat into portions for two.  The bone went into the pot and I made lamb and veg soup.  That leg of lamb gave us a total of 22 serves of meat.

*  Gratefully received a bag of peacharines from my Mum and Dad.  They are super juicy and delicious.

*  Gratefully received lots of rubber craft stamps from a friend.

*  Kept the heater and cooler off as much as possible.  The windows and doors were flung open wide on the milder Spring / Summer days.

*  Gratefully received a couple of tubs of margarine.  We don't usually use margarine but it is a cheaper option to use in mashed potato when we can't taste any difference to butter

*  Made ANZAC biscuits using dough from the freezer.

*  Made a whole orange cake using oranges I froze from last Winter.  I divided the batter into two cakes.  One was to eat fresh and the other was frozen for future eating.

Other pink roses from our garden ( not the hot pink ones )

Christmas card I made using wrapping paper as the background mat.

Lots of sausage rolls

Lamb and veg soup

Whole orange cake

A card I made for Kurt's 21st birthday.

We wish you a joyous Christmas Season with your family and friends.

Thankyou for your continued support and friendship. Somehow Darren and I made it through a very difficult and challenging year.  Having a network of friends,  family and blogging friends made it a little bit easier to get through each day.

This will be the last post I write for the year. I'll be back mid January 2020.


  1. I wish you a lovely Christmas time with your family, Wendy. The closeness and care of loved ones makes all the difference; in the good times and the more difficult ones. Best Wishes. MegXx

  2. I wish you all a very happy Christmas and a wonderful new year. I also pray for your family member .

  3. Wendy we will pray for your family member for a continued recovery :).

    The roses are so pretty and no doubt smell divine and glad you were able to pick a lot of lovely produce from the gardens for meals. You got such a lot accomplished.

    Our savings added up to $58.55 last week :).

    In the kitchen -
    - Cooked all meals and bread from from scratch. We have cooked up a few roasts and sliced them and divided them into meal sized portions for the freezer for cold dinners with homemade pasta salads/cherry tomatoes from the gardens as it is too hot to cook here.

    In the gardens -
    - Picked cherry tomatoes and turnips from the gardens.

    Finances -
    - Banked more into our 3 month living expenses emergency fund bringing us to 64.6 % of the way there.
    - We have decided since DH was diagnosed with a 6mm brain aneurysm that we will put in air conditioning in the home after Christmas as it is so hot here. Likely he will go into have it operated on (a family history of brain hemorrhages in mid 50's) in the early New Year and could be out of action for some weeks and a cooler home will help him with his recovery I think. So we shall start again to save to reach our target.

    Purchases -
    - Purchased a 11 litre convection oven to do smaller roasts etc without turning on the larger oven. This will use far less electricity.
    - Purchased and Wish e-gift card for fuel and groceries from RACQ saving 5% or $9.96.
    - Found lots of bread rolls on markdown prices saving $5.59 on usual prices.
    - Got a 1kg packet of bacon rashers for free for being a supermarket taste tester saving $9 on usual prices.
    - Purchased 4 x marinated beef roasts on special saving $22 on usual prices.

    Hope everyone has a wonderful Christmas and a frugal week ahead :).

    Sewingcreations15 (Lorna).

  4. God Bless
    Merry Christmas and all the best for a better new year x

  5. Hi Wendy, with so much going on in our family this year i did manage to make a batch of miracle spray wishing you and your family a Happy Christmas xx

  6. Wow Wendy, you have been super busy! Thank you for sharing (including all of your wonderful recipes!). Wishing you and your family a lovely Christmas and a happy and healthy 2020. Lauren X

  7. Wishing you all a Christmas full of love, light & joy. You are a shining example Wendy. Thanks for all of the gifts you bring to others. And I wish for the new decade only happy surprises. Hope springs eternal! Heather

  8. Just looking at your lovely cards. Is the centre piece a stamp that you ink and then add glitter? Where do you buy your stamps from Wendy? Regards Robyn S.A

    1. Hi Robyne. No, it's not a stamp. It's called a die and it's made from metal that you run through an embossing / die cutting machine. The machine I have is called a Sizzix Big Shot. I paid about $90 for the machine from Spotlight a few years ago. The cheapest place to buy the dies is from Ebay or Aliexpress or similar stores. The dies canrange from under $1 to about $20 - $30. This one cost about $3. The Big Shot was a great investment and makes my cards look a little more professional.

  9. Those roses are gorgeous Wendy! Such a beautiful pink colour.

    Your cards are lovely, and that reminds me to learn how to use my Sizzix Big Shot that I purchased earlier this year. I am a little unsure about the dies also, but you have answered in Robyne's comment. Thank you I will look for some.

    Just popping in to wish you and your family a wonderful New Year xxx


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