Frugal Friday - First Week of 2017

A 1000 piece puzzle we put together over Christmas break.
I am seriously having a hard time believing we're in 2017.  Anyone else still want to write "2016" on dates and things?  Sheesh.  Hopefully I'll come to my senses and get over that soon. 

Honestly, 2016 was a pretty decent year for most things - John getting his first Call, finding a medication that actually helps my PHN, and the children having a seriously good year in school this fall.  I'm really happy that we can actually do some planning and budgeting and settle into a rhythm again after being pulled hither and yon for the last 2 and a bit years.

This year, 2017, has gotten off to a rough start.  After literally months of very low PHN flares I had a terrible flare this week - Monday and Tuesday were absolutely awful and Wednesday and Thursday were slowly better.  I'm still struggling today with pain but it's way better than it was earlier this week.  I seriously dislike weeks like this because I typically end up behind the following week on doing all the things that need to be completed.  This week, however, I was officially on vacation so my to-do list was short and I had already given myself permission to "do nothing" if I wanted or needed to. So, at least I'm not starting out next week behind!  I'm hoping that jumping back into exercising tomorrow will help work out any remaining issues and I'll be mostly back to normal next week.

We did do some stuff that was frugal this week - although weeks like this one almost never feel frugal.  Here's where some of what happened this last week (starting Saturday, December 31, 2017).

* We made vegetable soup, biscuits, sandwich bread, pizza, breadsticks, and waffles from scratch at home.

* We celebrated John's birthday with crab legs cooked at home (purchased as his birthday gift) and a red velvet cake that I made from a cake mix I got for 75-cents back in November.  I have never had good luck making red velvet cake from scratch (it ends up dry or weird or something else) and this was perfect!  

* I made John a scrapbook of his Ordination photos that I got through a penny-print order online with local pickup so I didn't have to pay postage, only sales tax.  I ordered those back in November and used things I had on hand, including an album my Mother-in-law gave me (she wasn't going to use it) to put together the scrapbook.  John loved it!  The crab legs, the album and a three-pack of mixed nuts that I bought on clearance right after Christmas for $2.99 were John's birthday presents this year.  He liked every one of them!

* I sewed one birthday gift and got a baby quilt half done, using items we already owned.

* I read four books that we already owned (one I'd read before) and one my daughter had checked out of the library.  I also watched several videos online for free through PBS and youtube and used our Netflix account for a few others.   I always seem to have several books running around the house that none of us have read.  I'm hoping to read several of those this year and clear them out if they aren't worth keeping. 

* My husband attended a church district meeting one day and was fed lunch and will be compensated mileage.  He met a number of new people and really enjoyed the chance to network and swap resources.

* I froze the leftover Christmas cookies to eat later this year. 

* My husband cleaned out his dresser drawers to make room for some new clothes he received for Christmas.  We now have another bag of donations to take to the local thrift store.    My dresser is on the agenda for this week so we can take everything all at once.

* We polished several pairs of leather shoes.

* It's been frigid here - well below zero at night and hovering around 0F in the daytime (or lower with the wind chill).  We didn't adjust the thermostat, but are wearing more layers and drinking hot drinks to stay warm.  The children wore extra layers to school and made sure they had sweatpants to pull on over shorts after sports activities.  We added blankets to the beds in our two cooler bedrooms and made sure to open the curtains during the day to warm up the rooms via sunshine.

* Since moving has been so painful, I cleaned out all of my email in-boxes, wrote thank you notes, and worked on embroidery rather than trying to do things that required movement. I had hoped to finish painting our bedroom this week but that requires warmer temperatures anyway and I'll have time later in the month to get it completed.

* We ate several meals out of the freezer for lunch and even for dinner one night and I'm enjoying having more space to organize things. 

I think that's it for this week.  What did you do this week in the land of frugal?


  1. Hi Lea,
    I'm sorry you had so much pain from the PHN flare, that must be hard to deal with.
    I don't feel like we had a lot of frugal things this week, but did have a few.
    I worked at my friends store for a few hours yesterday & made a little money.
    Sent in a $10.00 rebate for an item we bought.
    Scheduled a postal pick up for my eBay package instead of driving to the post office one day.
    That is about all I can think of this week!
    Have a great weekend.

    1. Thanks Rhonda!

      Sounds like you had a pretty good week - I know around here extra money and time are always appreciated.

      You have a wonderful weekend too,


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