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Five Frugal Things | Does this make sense? No.

We’re kicking off this week’s round of Five Frugal Things with me doing something not-so-sensible:

1. I bought some boxes of bruised apples

bruised apples

Does it make sense to buy apples for homemade applesauce when I am currently having trouble cooking dinner?


Did I do it anyway?


Do I regret it?


(Here’s how I make applesauce.)

2. Mr. FG and I used a Panda Express coupon

If you fill out the survey on the back of the receipt, you can get a three-entree plate for the price of a two-entree plate.

Panda Express receipt.

So, we collaborated on choosing three things we both would want to eat, and then we shared the plate. So, our dinner cost $12 for the two of us, even with a drink added.

Did I fill out the survey on the new receipt?

Yes, yes I did!

3. I bought a few scratch-and-dent items

I can’t resist a quick look at the scratch and dent shelves whenever I go into a grocery store! Sometimes there’s nothing I want, but last time I popped into Giant, I took a peek and found a marked-down can of Libby’s pumpkin and a box of cereal.

I ate all the cereal already, and I’ll use the pumpkin to make some muffins, or maybe this crustless streusel pumpkin pie.

4. I used my Gap Visa to earn a $20 reward

Gap Visa advertising mailer.

I keep this credit card around mainly because every now and again, they send me offers like this. It was super easy to use it for regular grocery purchases and such, and now that I’ve met the five-purchase requirement, I will switch back to using my Southwest Rapid Rewards credit card.

(The Southwest card is the one I generally prefer, but when a $20 offer comes around, that makes the Gap Visa a better choice temporarily.)

5. I…

  • continue to brew my coffee at home
  • continue to not buy food at the on-campus Chick-Fil-A
  • got another two pairs of free undies from Victoria’s Secret (I am now out of coupons. Ha.)
  • borrowed my mom’s food mill to make my applesauce

applesauce making

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

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Thursday 21st of October 2021

I roasted a whole sugar pumpkin, pureed it, and made a small batch of pumpkin pie. I didn't buy a darn thing on Amazon. Winning! I "unshopped" about a million things online and reduced my online consumption rate by probably 95% since July. We haven't gone out to dinner in about 4 months. Haven't done takeout in about 3. I am fine-tuning my "kitchen ecosystem" more and more and eating all of what we buy as part of an ongoing zero food waste/low food waste endeavor. I switched internet providers, saving 10 bucks (meh) but getting almost 7x faster speed.

Lindsay B

Thursday 21st of October 2021

1. So very grateful for insurance incentives. Earned the $250 yearly maximum for things like receiving a flu shot, completing online wellness workshops, and having a prenatal appointment. This money has gone towards unexpected dental expenses during a period of high medical expenses. 2. Have a habit tracker app on my phone which I am using to track my no-spend days. I want to be more aware and intentional of how much and how often I spend money on non-essentials, and tracking in the app keeps me more mindful. 3. Traveled for an extra shift and will be reimbursed for mileage, hotel, and some meals. DH and I enjoyed the hot tub and free breakfast at the hotel, and enjoyed the scenic drive each way. Took leftovers home, of course. 4. Used a 5-cent fuel discount while traveling, and filled up at a station that was already 20 cents cheaper than our home gas prices. Every little bit helps! 5. Enjoyed a free baked good from Starbucks using stars.

Suellen J Roley

Wednesday 20th of October 2021

Got two flags which I will use (already using one) as window coverings on clearance at Ace Hardware for $1.75 each.

Redeemed 50,000 Fetch Rewards Points for a $50.00 Amazon gift card, turned around and spent most of it on two pairs of pants for work.

Had my next door door neighbor rebuild my front porch which was a disaster area. He's a retired general contractor and charged me 1/3 of what an active general contractor would.

Had to have a blood pressure recheck yesterday so took the opportunity to get my flu shot as well.

Figured out why I am getting sick at work with the help of a doctor at Urgent Care, I should not take all of my pills all at the same time. I googled when was the best time for each pill and have split them up into morning and evening, also will have a med review with my doctor to see if there are any pills that "fight" with each other


Wednesday 20th of October 2021

This week I mealprepped several meals I did all my laundry on sunny days for linedrying I entered this year's water use and it was lower than last year. This is frugal for the earth - our drinking water is ridiculously cheap. I made French toast from bread ends my husband does not like.


Tuesday 19th of October 2021

Apples are the theme of the week! 1) Made apple crisp with apples given to me (I much prefer apple crisp over apple sauce). 2) Dinner last night was with pork chops with delicata squash and roasted potatoes. The squash and potatoes were given to us and the garlic, thyme, and sage were from our garden. 3) Made 7 jars of pesto using basil from the garden. Used less expensive walnuts instead of insanely expensive pine nuts. 4) RETURN TO THE MEAL PLAN! For the rest of the semester, I'm only gone for 2 nights a week, and so I'm trying to get back in the habit of meal planning as it saves us so much money with a) the grocery shopping and b) cutting down on food waste. 5) I forgot to bring my travel mug to work apartment and thus did not have anything to bring coffee with me to work. Our work, in an attempt to save money, has not restocked the faculty coffee stations post-Covid, despite many of us asking for it. Rather than purchase the expensive coffee from the cafe, I made it in a mason jar at work and just tried to "sip around the grounds..." It was not particularly pleasant, but desperate times and all that...

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