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Five Frugal Things | I’m almost there

Hey everyone!

I’m off taking my final exam this morning, and then woohoo, my life is gonna be quite freed up. Yay!

1. I used a wood marker on my free dresser/bed frame

Reader Kate let me know that the furniture she gave me had been through a move and had some dings.

a bed frame.

(Of course, that was totally fine by me; the price of $0 was extremely reasonable. 😉 )

I need another painting project like I need a hole in my head (!!!) so I did not want to bother painting the bed frame and dresser.

A set of wood repair markers.

For an immediate no-painting fix, I popped into Home Depot and found a multipack of wood markers, and I used the reddish one to disguise some of the scratches and dings on the furniture.

A dresser with damage around the top edges.

And not perfect, but much better!

A dresser with a repaired top.

2. I used another wood marker on my free side table

You might remember that I got this side table from the Buy Nothing group.

Ashley furniture wood and glass side table.

It was in pretty good shape except for some scratches. So, I used another marker from my multi-pack and touched up the scratches. Easy and quick!

A scratch on a wood end table.

A colored-in scratch on an end table.

3. I used another $5 coupon for the new Aldi

I had another one to use up, so Zoe and I popped in on Sunday (the day the coupon expired!) to pick up a few things.

Aldi shopping carts.

4. I returned an extra prom dress

Zoe and I had bought two prom dresses because we weren’t sure which one would look right with her heels (which we did not think to bring with us when we shopped!)

Zoe wearing a black prom dress.

Prom was back in April, and I knew I had to hurry up and get the extra dress returned before the special occasion return window closed!

Luckily, we made it in time for a full refund. Whew.

Zoe in prom makeup.

Two related notes:

  • We purposely shopped somewhere that allowed returns (some prom dress places don’t).
  • I put the receipt in a safe inner zippered compartment of my purse so I wouldn’t lose it. Receipts are so, so easy to lose, especially in the midst of a move!

5. I walked to college yesterday

My rental is within walking distance of the school! Now, that obviously means that my rental is also a short drive from school, so I don’t think walking is actually saving me all that much in the way of gas/wear and tear.

But hey, it’s a little extra exercise for me at least.

Unfortunately, I forgot to look at the forecast and when it was time to walk home, there was a torrential downpour. Whoops.

But the rain was short-lived, so I waited it out and then walked home.

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

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Sunday 22nd of May 2022

We have a furnituker for the maple cabinets in our RV (where we live full time) but my husband discovered that one of the colored pencils in my Prismacolor pack of pencils was a PERFECT match. So if any of you use colored pencils for artwork or coloring then you may find a great match in there too!


Sunday 22nd of May 2022

*Furniture marker

My proofreading is like CC's. It works best after I hit "post"

Anita Isaac

Thursday 19th of May 2022

i had a huge frugal fail this past week. an acquaintance from synagogue had her cat pass away. she wanted to meet my new puppy. i invited her to the stuy town cafe in my apt complex where buddy can stay on the terrace. i gave her $20. she gave me nothing back in change. i couldn't believe it. she knew my husband lost his job. i told her i would treat but my drink was $5. Am trying not to dwell on it and continue to be my generous self. my hubby is also generous. that is one thing we always agree on.

Anita Isaac

Thursday 19th of May 2022

sorry the markers are guardsman and they came from bed, bath and beyond a thousand years ago. they have not driied out and they were $4.59 plus tax. the price label is still there,


Thursday 19th of May 2022

Your daughter looks beautiful in that dress. She is so statuesque. Hope she had a wonderful time at prom.

Here's our Five Frugal Things for the week.

1. I received a VISA gift card for Mother's Day and used it to purchase vegetable plants for our garden. Between the seeds I ordered earlier in the year from an organic seed farm and these plants, we'll be able to fill the expanded space we've tilled.

2. With the price of food rising so sharply, we doubled the garden plot and are planning to do a raised bed for annual herbs. I did a small herb garden last year and dried much of the bounty. We enjoyed it so much that we've decided it's going to be a permanent fixture.

3. A fellow sewing friend took a trip to the New York City Garment District and brought back a "fabric challenge". She bought us both a yard of the same fabric - a patterned denim in creams, browns and golds. The challenge is for both of us to make something from it; not showing the other person until it is done. I decided it would make a pretty summer denim skirt. It wasn't quite enough fabric for the project, so I purchased a yard of light brown denim for $3.6o to coordinate with it. I downloaded a free online pattern, too. I'm excited for a new skirt and can't wait to see what she does with hers.

4. I do costume work for a local dance studio. One of the costumes needed to be glitzed up and I had to source about 18 yards of fabric. The local fabric store chain didn't have enough yardage in any one location and there was no way I was spending time and gas money running from store to store. The store said they could not consolidate it for me either. They suggested ordering online. When I googled, it, I found what I was looking for at a different company at a fraction of the price. The chain was selling it for $9.99 a yard plus shipping. With the coupon I had, I would have been able to get it for about $8 per yard. The alternate place I found had it on sale for $3.09 a yard with free shipping on the quantity I ordered.

5. I think I mentioned in an earlier post that I was contesting my house reassessment increase of 63%. I met with the assessor and gave her photos and comparables from my neighborhood. I got a letter in the mail that they are dropping the increase from $89,900 to $33,000 - doing the math, I determined that this represented an increase of about 4.9% per year since the last eval; which is lower than the national average. After understanding the math she used to calculate the new number, we felt the assessor listened and was fair. I am, however, going to be watching market trends over the next few years and will have no hesitation asking for a re-val if the market drops significantly.


Thursday 19th of May 2022

Ok, I love your sewing challenge. So fun!

Jackie Roberts

Thursday 19th of May 2022

At 72 years of age and my husband 82. We are building a deck off our out building 8x12. We have it framed and the floor joists hung. Working mostly two hours a day. It was to expensive to hire done. The treated lumber is heavy but we will get it done eventually. Maybe in two weeks. We both cut are on hair.


Thursday 19th of May 2022

Ok, this is seriously impressive! Kudos to you guys!!

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