Skip to Content

Five Frugal Things | Clean yard, filthy me

1. I cleaned up the leaves in my yard

I know this is not a typical January activity.

leaf blower.

But in the fall, I was way, way too busy with chemistry and microbiology to even think about any yard maintenance. So, my leaves just sat there.

Yesterday, though, I borrowed my neighbor’s leaf blower and lawn tractor, and I cleaned up my yard pretty thoroughly.

lawn tractor.

My yard’s cleanliness and my own cleanliness were inversely correlated; here’s what the inside of my shoes looked like.

dirty pair of shoes.

And my socks looked pretty bad too.

dirty Snoopy socks.

But at least this was way cheaper than hiring a company to clean my leaves…I have a half acre lot here with lots of trees, so it wouldn’t have been cheap.

2. I helped Zoe mend two of her hoodies

One was a well-weathered comfy hoodie that was coming apart at the sleeve cuffs, and the other hoodie had a couple of seams that had come apart.

hoodies on a table.

If a garment is going to get a hole, I am always so happy when it happens to be on the seam. That’s so easy to fix!

3. I bought ice cream novelties on clearance

The other night Lisey said, “Mom, I think we need some more fun little ice cream treats.”

This is a sentiment I can always get behind.

So when I stopped at Safeway for some other things, I looked at their ice cream novelty case and I noticed that a bunch of items were on clearance! I bought something like 6 boxes of fun little ice cream treats, and we are all happy about that.

ice cream novelties.

I am once again so happy I have my new little chest freezer; it makes it such an easy decision to do things like buy six boxes of ice cream novelties. 🙂

4. I used the heels of the bread to make a grilled cheese sandwich

As long as you turn them so the cut side is out, they make a not-perfect-but-still-respectable sandwich.

grilled cheese sandwich.

5. I…

  • sold two book on eBay and used saved packing materials to ship them
  • got some free binders for school from a Facebook free group
  • got more free hamster bedding for Zoe from a Facebook free group

hamster bedding.

Your turn! What frugal things have you been up to?

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


Wednesday 18th of January 2023

Five frugalities: Mended clothes for DH and myself--holes and missing buttons now disappeared! Cooked at home all week. Ditto coffee. Organized a pot luck lunch to celebrate my soup kitchen team. We had a great time and a much better lunch than any of us eat home alone. Nurturing my beautiful white poinsettia, a lovely houseplant. A smaller reddish poinsettia is going to the compost pile. Rediscovered a great purse in my closet, a welcome change from my too-big bag of fall.

Heidi Louise

Wednesday 18th of January 2023

@Kristina, Poinsettia "flowers", meaning the colored leaves, last quite a while if cut and put in water, though the gunky stuff in the stems might not mix well if combined with other flowers in a vase.


Wednesday 18th of January 2023

I just had to comment … years ago when my MIL was visiting, she made grilled cheese sandwiches and turned the heel inside out as well. I thought I was going to cry! I loved using the heels crust side out and putting them in my “george foreman” grill to create more of a panini. I would actually save the heels for this. I can laugh about it now!

Lindsay B

Wednesday 18th of January 2023

1. We’ve had free accommodation for the first week of our current road trip, and just spoke with a friend who will host us for the next several weeks. It will be wonderful to see them, and also wonderful to be able to stay for free.

2. I brought a small tube of lotion I received for Christmas on our road trip- it’s not my favorite, but it’s nice to have something small for travel and this way I’ll use it up.

3. Went to a children’s consignment store, but didn’t end up seeing anything Baby E really needed. We will figure out a way to squeeze him into his jammies for a little longer while we travel- his little legs are getting both too chunky and too long.

4. I was going to darn several pairs of partial-wool socks that were handed down from my mom, but realized that they were really poor quality and that it would make more sense to just wear them as much as possible, rather than “spending” time and effort (and wool) to try to repair something that would just fall apart anyway. I’m glad the socks I bought are fully wool, and while they were more expensive up front, they have a lifetime guarantee and will be worth repairing.

5. Cut DH’s hair.

Stephanie D

Wednesday 18th of January 2023

It seems as if we are bleeding money this month--medical bills from tests back in the fall are arriving; fridge needed a repair; I misread the budget pay gas bill for months, which brought on an unexpected disconnect alert, so had to fork out an additional $200. So I struggled to find frugality this week.

1. Hubby goes to bed before I do, so when he does, I immediately turn down the thermostat, and put on a sweater, or sit under a fleece blanket to read. (He is a stroke survivor, and cold makes his affected side spasm, causing pain, so we have to keep the house warmer than I would prefer.) That's around 3-4 hours of lower temps, plus I've convinced him (most of the time) to just turn on the portable heater in the den where he sits and catches up on his news shows, rather than turn the whole house temp up when he gets up in the morning. 2. Got 2 free Kindle books on their Prime First Reads program. 3. Made my own hummus this week for veggie snacks. I don't usually buy my hummus, because homemade tastes better, but don't often take the time to make my own, and therefore will cave to higher-fat (and more expensive) snacks. 4. Took the bag of veggie peels from the freezer and made about 4.5 quarts of soup stock. Started a new bag. 5. The usual random things: bought gas for $.10/gal less at a station on the way home from church than the one closest to me; consolidated errands; as retired, we always eat at home and haven't ordered pizza in since Nov.

Stephanie D

Sunday 22nd of January 2023

@Gretchen, Do you used canned garbanzo beans, or do you start with dried ones? I like working with the dried ones and it's not that much trouble--if I plan ahead. I like to keep a couple of cans on hand when I get a craving or just to eat. But the soaked and cooked ones just taste better to me!


Wednesday 18th of January 2023

@Stephanie D, I've made homemade hummus twice recently! It's really good, and much cheaper than anything I've seen @ the grocery store.


Wednesday 18th of January 2023

Made bird fat feeders - dried out grapefruit halves (on the top of the warming oven on woodstove) after eating the fruit. Cooked bacon in the air fryer - and poured the fat in the grapefruit halves, into the fridge freezer to firm up. The woodpeckers love fat based treated. And this was 'free' as they were from leftovers. Have had 3 types of woodpeckers so far, 3-Toed female, a Downy, and a Hairy (you'd think woodpeckers would have more majestic names!)

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.