Each week Brandy at The Prudent Homemaker shares her frugal accomplishments from the previous week. There is so much inspiration and encouragement in her posts and the many comments from her readers. Here’s a little run down of our frugal happenings for the past week: Drove as little as possible – I had homework for a fiber retreat, so a friend very kindly drove my daughter to and from the girls’ group activity with their daughters.
Drove my husband’s car to the retreat because city parking isn’t made for “full figured” trucks like ours (haha), but it also saved me a bit on fuel because of heavy traffic Friday. (Our diesel gets amazing mileage on the open road, but it is not meant for stop & go traffic.) That also let me run the car’s tank down to a quarter tank (gaaaah!!!) so that I got the most of refueling on the $1 off fuel rewards the last night of the retreat. (Savings: $15 – I put in 15 gallons.)
Stayed at home at night instead of getting a hotel room at the retreat – a commute, but considering the price of rooms vs the fuel spent, it was still a huge savings. (Estimated savings: $400. I used a half tank of gas in three days [including taking my kids to my folks in another town and picking them back up at the end], but rooms were going for $150+ a night.)
Planned out my purchases by visiting vendors’ sites in advance, walked the vendor hall on Friday afternoon to scope things out in person, then did one stint of shopping during lunch on Saturday. I took out a certain amount of cash and planned to put anything left over into our earthquake bags. Using this process, I had $100 leftover for the emergency kits. (Savings: $117+. The $100 that I didn’t spend plus $15 a vendor took off a small loom I bought because I was paying cash and the box was showing a lot of wear from being hauled around to fiber shows. I saved approximately 10% tax on some handcrafted glass stitch markers because a vendor is from Oregon and wasn’t charging tax (apx $2). Additionally I got 25% off on two skeins of local fiber shed yarn I bought, but since I paid cash, got no receipt, and the original price isn’t on the yarn bands, I can’t quite remember the original price. Normally I would, but my brain was filled with a LOT of information at my classes. I came home EXHAUSTED each night!)
Carried my own snacks and meals each day; gratefully used the hospitality tables to fill up my water bottle and get herbal tea; did not eat dinners at the hotel or stop for fast food. The first day I had chamomile tea sachets with me, so I just used their mug, hot water, and some sugar packets. (Then I had extra sugars from what I picked up, so I tucked them in my sachet tin with my last chamomile sachet for another day.) The second and third days I tried out the peppermint, lemon ginger, and tropical fruit teas the hotel offered. I did buy three sodas overall, for a total cost of $6. Considering sandwiches and salads were going for $8 each times three lunches ($24+) and dinners on the road home (apx $6 at McDonalds times three dinners ~ $18), I’ll still call that a win. (Savings: apx $36)
Parked almost a mile away and walked to the hotel (including hills – oy!) the first day; parked closer in the second and third days but still took the stairs everywhere instead of the elevator = free exercise.
Price shopped the vitamins and supplements I normally order from one store – found them all for less on Amazon and used the Prime trial for free two-day shipping. (Savings: almost $15 with shipping)
Received a free e-book on the Prime trial. I went in to cancel it and found out that it lets me have the full 30-day trial; it’s just that I am not paying to *continue* the service. (I thought it ended immediately when I cancel.) Savings: $4.99
Downloaded library books for myself and an audiobook for son on Overdrive.