Saturday 12 June 2021

This Week's Frugal Tasks Saturday 12th June 2021

 It's been way too cold here in Melbourne over the last week or two.  Too cold to spend much time outside.  We did manage to get the bare essentials done like watering pot plants, feeding the chickens and picking broccoli.

Our lockdown ended yesterday and although we can now travel 25 km from home,  the weather is too cold and we are not allowed to visit anyone.  So home it is,  with the heater on and at times under a blanket.  Maybe I could do a little tidying in the craft room or here's a thought - start crafting again.

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

*  Picked lots of lemons.  I like to bring them inside and let them rest for a week before juicing.  I do tend to get more juice by doing this.  I did juice lemons that were a few weeks old and froze the juice.  Darren and I also pruned the tree after discovering a few small patches of gall wasp.

*  A couple of silverbeet seeds finally germinated after weeks of waiting.  To protect them from snails,  pests and the wild storm Melbourne experience this week,  I placed a plastic drink bottle over the seedlings.

*  While in the city with my parents last week I made quite a few apron cards.  It was a wonderful way to spend all the spare hours I had on Wednesday.  It also kept my mind off the news and further lockdown announcements.

*  Made homemade pizza for dinner one night.  Leftovers were eaten for lunch the next day.  Although we rarely eat takeaway,  I'll be honest,  I've been craving it during lockdown.  I'm only human  !!

*  Gratefully received a cooked chicken from a family member.  From the chicken I made enough stock to make 16 single serves of chunky chicken soup.  I also made potato, chicken and veg pasta bake that serves 4.  There was enough meat to go into the freezer for another 3 meals that will give us another 6 - 8 serves.

*  My mascara was getting a little dry.  So I put one drop of water in the bottle ( is that what they call it ? ) and gave the brush a good swish around.  I've done this two weeks running and it's like the mascara has been given a new lease on life.

*  Baked ANZAC biscuits from dough I had in the freezer.  I baked them while I was cooking a chicken, potato pasta bake one night.

*  Darren picked kale to put in the chicken potato pasta bake.  Our silverbeet needs a little rest and time to regrow more leaves.

*  Gave the washing machine a deep clean with Epsom salts and very hot water.  It's amazing how much gunk comes out.

*  Saved shower water and washing machine water as per usual.

*  I only opened the curtains a small amount on the cold days to keep the house warmer.

*  Got 6 serves from the family meat pie I made the other night.  Usually I get 4 - 5 serves but we've reduced our serving sizes just a little and added more veg to the plate. 


Here are the apron cards I made.  I'm hoping to make gardening and bbq ones soon.

Lemons from the garden.

Are you still thrifty even when the weather is cold ? 

If you are in Summer,  do you keep up your money saving ways ?


  1. Throw out your mascara!!! By adding water, you are creating/introducing bacteria that is already in the tube from use. It isn't worth getting an eye infection. I worked for Clinique, Lancome and Clarins in the USA. I don't think expensive mascara is any better than one purchased at the grocery store or drugstore. Just friendly advice. Bun

  2. Those are the cutest cards ever! Have you ever tried blending up the entire lemon (minus seeds) - peel and all? It's delicious and the peel is so nutritious! I cut them in slices, remove any seeds, throw them in my processor and process until I get a thick paste. Then I freeze it in an ice cube tray (and transfer frozen cubes to a freezer bag) to use for cooking, baking, etc.

    I've never tried cleaning my washing machine with epsom salt. I'll have to give it a try!

    1. No I haven't tried this Staci but I've often thought about making a lemon cake. Do you have a recipe ?

    2. I do have a lemon cake recipe using an entire lemon (everything but the seeds) and it works with the frozen blended whole lemon too - just defrost before making:
      Lemon Cake
      Cake Ingredients:
      3 eggs
      1 1/2 c (300g) sugar
      1 3/4 c (275g) all purpose flour
      2 1/2 tsp baking powder
      1/3 c (100g) butter, softened
      1/3 c (100g) plain yogurt
      1 large lemon, about (300g), washed and cut into pieces (with the rind, but remove the seeds)
      1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

      Glaze Ingredients:
      1 oz lemon juice
      1 oz water
      a little less than 3 Tbsp (35 grams) sugar
      1.Preheat oven to 350°F (175°C)
      2.Prepare an 8″ springform pan by spraying with oil (or butter) and lining in parchment paper (sides optional, if you want really clean sides), then spray the paper, too.
      3.Place the sugar and eggs in a large bowl and beat with a mixer until light and fluffy.
      4.Sift the flour with the baking powder then add to the mixture in the bowl a little at a time along with the softened butter. Continue to mix until completely blended, then stir in the yogurt and the vanilla.
      5.In a food processor, process the whole lemon until it is almost pureed.
      6.Add this lemon to the cake mixture and stir until evenly combined, then put the batter into the prepared tin.
      7.Bake for 50-60 minutes (depending on your oven), but test with a cake tester or skewer to make sure the cake is done before removing from the oven. Allow to cool for about 15 minutes, then remove the side of the springform pan.
      1.Prepare the glaze by melting the sugar in the lemon juice and water, and allow to simmer for a few minutes, just until the liquid has a syrupy consistency. Spoon and brush over the top of the cake and allow to cool completely before cutting.

    3. Thankyou so much for the recipe. I'm going to give it a go.

  3. Our seasons are flip-flopped and we have hot, humid days where we go outside early and work and then stay in until nightfall.
    But we have been more fortunate than other places because our area has been having regular rainfall and much of it has been early morning or overnight which is just perfect for our plants to thrive in!
    We put netting over our blackberry bushes to keep birds and squirrels from nicking any!
    I had onions that overwintered and got huge stalks (and flowers) but the bulbs themselves were not huge. After the past 17 months, we’ve realized how delicate our grocery system can be and, although we have always considered ourselves self-sufficient, we have a new emphasis on eliminating waste.
    So as I pulled out onions to plant some veg that cost 69 cents for a 4 pack of plants, I brought the onions in, cut off long stems to go into compost. Put flowers into bowl to dry their onion seeds and put all the onion bulbs into food processor to chop up! I got 9 cups of diced onions that I put into the freezer! 17 months ago, I might have just pulled 5hem up and tossed them away!!
    Thanks for all your clever ideas, inspiration and encouragement you give!!

    1. I love reading about your backyard growing. I hope you get an abundance of blackberries.

      Like you, we have always tried to be wise with what we grow and eat. We've been super careful to eliminate food waste too. Our rubbish bin usually only has 2 small bags in the bottom and the contents are items that cannot be recycled or composted.

  4. Beautiful cards. Good idea for making a pie go further and I bow down to your chicken making so many yummy meals. Cheers

    1. Thankyou Bernie. Discovering how to make stock in the slow cooker has really helped to stretch a chicken until it screams ( sort of ).

  5. You are so creative Wendy - love the cards! Thank you for taking the time to inspire us regularly.
    All the best, Amanda

  6. Hi Wendy,

    I made a batch of ANZAC biscuits this week too. I do have to be more organised though and get some biscuit doughs into my freezer.

    This week was fairly frugal here with renewal of a drivers licence being biggest and unavoidable expense. Otherwise:

    * topped up petrol in car when price came down into $1.40s from $1.70per L.
    * combined my errands to save on petrol
    * picked lettuce, spring onion, herbs from garden + bunch of flowers
    * homemade meals and snacks - creamy mustard chicken, fried rice, shepherd's pie, soup and bread, ANZAC biscuits, pear & choc chip muffins, pear pancakes
    * used up sour cream, thinned with a little milk, in creamy mustard chicken as didn't have cream.
    * got free chokos from roadside box - I plan to use these in a stew.
    * got discounted tray of chicken thighs when shopping. I froze this.
    * saved shower warm up water and tipped into wash machine. Washing dried on line in sun.

    We've had some cold days too, but not as cold as Melbourne! We have worn extra layers, closed up blinds and curtains, snuggled in under blankets and have not needed heating on...yet.

    Have a good week!

  7. I use a drop or two of contact solution to thin mascara. Works great.

    Tell me more about cleaning your washing machine with epsom salts. (please)

    It's been very hot & humid here in the middle of the US. This past week we finally got rain and it's cooler today and will be this week.
    I've been keeping the shades and drapes pulled to keep out the heat. I close the doors to the laundry room and bathroom as they are on the southside of the house and get very warm. I also keep the laundry room closed to keep the heat from the machines in that room.

    I used the Air Fryer and Instant Pot to make a roast and potatoes and not the oven. We had leftovers to eat.
    We are eating out of the freezers and pantry and only shopping for dairy and some produce. I'll be harvesting cucumbers this week and picked my first summer squash yesterday!
    I have a coupon for maintenance on my car and the dealership will come get it, saving us time and $$.
    I purchased 4 boxes of herbal tea from the company website, instead of 6 boxes on a "big website". I don't need 6 boxes of each and this way I get to try more varieties at a cheaper price.
    Don't know if this is frugal or not but it appeals to my frugal nature. I order laundry detergent Sheets from a company in Canada and today I ordered a year's supply with free shipping. No more big plastic jugs cluttering up my laundry room. It works as good or better than what I was using. It's less than .04US a load.
    We will be eating from home when our out-of-state family comes for a visit for 6 days; with maybe 1 restaurant meal.
    Thanks for sharing what you do. I always enjoy your posts.

    1. Here's the link to the article I wrote about cleaning the washing machine. I hope this helps.


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