Frugal End of November

Beet Pickles - made this summer.  I opened a jar of these this week.  Yum!
Is anyone else in awe that it's already December?   I know I can't believe it.  Part of that unbelief is the weather - 50F for temperatures this last week and we're still there this weekend.  We head down into the 20'sF this week but, wow, it feels like fall still in so many ways. 

I put together a menu plan for the rest of the 2017 year using mostly what we already have in our freezers and cupboards.  I am planning on taking advantage of some really good sales to stock up for January through March (hopefully longer) but otherwise, we have most of what we need.  We've been busy and will stay that way for a few weeks - Advent at church, all the December "stuff" with the children (concerts, recitals, end of term projects at school, etc.) and the end of the term at the University I teach for, which is coming up very soon.   In between all of that, my Dad had a necessary, though unplanned surgery and will be spending the next six weeks or so recovering.  Nothing like having everything happen all at once, right?

Anyway, on to the frugal things from the last week-ish:

* Ate most meals at home.  I had a meeting at work that provided lunch and John was invited to a gathering that also provided a meal.  

* We made waffles, sausage-corn-potato chowder, taco soup, bread, and pizza at home this week.

* Ordered a couple of Christmas gifts online for my husband's staff at church and the children's teachers - very inexpensive using free shipping and gift cards (less than $3 per gift).  That was the last of the buying I had to do for anyone - now I just need to kick my sewing into high gear!

* A friend who has a hothouse gifted us with a head of lettuce, a head of bok choy and a bunch of basil.  They had way too much to eat, so brought it to work so share!

* Pulled out the Advent Wreath and Calendar we have used for years as well as the Nativity sets (yes, plural) and put those up.  We follow the church year, so Christmas doesn't officially start until the 25th of December and then continues through Epiphany, January 6.  So we will be slowly decorating the house up until the 25th.  This was the first "phase" of decorating.

* Attended a fundraiser Christmas Concert for very inexpensively - it was wonderful and we were happy to support the cause.  The children especially enjoyed the sing along portion!

* I repotted a plant that had been gifted to me by my mother-in-law.  It was getting root bound and I was able to rescue it.  Hopefully it will like its new pot much better!

* Our son finished raking and mulching the leaves that we had left in the yard so my husband wouldn't have to do it (Advent is a busy time of year for him) and we wouldn't have to hire someone.

* Our daughter has taken a regular Sunday afternoon baby-sitting position with a parishioner who is attending school online.  This allows the parishioner to spend time studying uninterrupted and our daughter is earning money that she plans to put toward her class trip next year.  Since the parishioner's husband works Sundays, this doesn't intrude on their family time.

* The children made Christmas ornaments to give to teachers, friends and family using items we had on hand.

* I have been working on embroidery for gifts in all my free bits of time. 

In other news, my husband's sister was married this past week in a small private ceremony with just their parents as witnesses.  We're super excited for them (they're a wonderful couple)!  One of the embroidery projects I've been working on is for their wedding gift.

What have you been up to frugally these past few days?

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