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Five Frugal Things (sandals, bruised apples, and more!)

Let’s get right to it! Here’s my five, and you can add yours in the comments.

1. $4 Spring Sandals

Lisey needed athletic shoes, and since I had a 30% off coupon for Kohl’s, we stopped in and found her a pair.

(Incidentally, we looked at a pair of shoes and thought, ooh, those look comfy and cute, but then we saw that the price was $115.   We decided they weren’t THAT nice. 😉 )

While we were there, I took a peek at the clearance section and found sandals for Sonia and Zoe.

clearance sandals

I bought them a size too big, and hopefully they’ll be exactly right come spring.

They were only $4 a pair after my coupon, so it’s not an enormous risk.   Plus, sandals like these have a fairly flexible fit range, so I think they’re gonna be just fine.

2. Oranges for Smoothies

I bought a bag of mini oranges a little while ago and they were a bit dry and sour.

sour oranges

Since no one was eating them plain, I peeled them and froze them for smoothies.   They’re not crazy sour, so I think putting a handful into smoothies is going to go over just fine.

3. Bruised Apples = Applesauce

I stopped at the produce stand while I was driving by, and happily, they had almost a half bushel of bruised apples available.

The price? $5.

Oh yeah.

applesauce from bruised apples

I made the most bruised ones into 4 quarts of applesauce, and we’re just eating the apples that are in the best shape (mostly Honey Crisp, which, hooray!!)

4. I took my dishwasher apart (again.)

Sometimes, something un-choppable makes it down into the chopper apparatus at the bottom of my dishwasher.

(Common culprits: shrimp shells, cherry pits, grape stems, or a piece of glass).

So, then it’s necessary to take the racks out and remove some of the bottom pieces of the dishwasher to access the chopper and retrieve the item.

center of kitchen-aid dishwasher

(I know something is stuck when I hear an odd noise during the wash cycle.   This time it was a high-pitched sound, almost like really high cricket chorus.)

One upside of the dishwasher drama we’ve had in the last year (the chopper blade broke, then a new one broke too!), is that I’m getting pretty darn speedy at this task.

The culprits this time appeared to be some sort of woody stem, plus a a small piece of hard plastic and I’m pleased to report that the dishwasher is lovely and quiet now.

(In case you were wondering, you do not need whiskers to take your dishwasher apart. 😉 I happen to be the one good at this task in our house because our dishwasher drama started last December when everyone in my family, including Mr. FG, was laid out with pneumonia.   I don’t love appliance repair/maintenance, but you gotta do what you gotta do, whiskers or not!)

5. I used some elderly bananas from my chest freezer.

I found a cup of mashed bananas hanging out in the bottom of my chest freezer when I cleaned it out, so I thawed those and combined them with some other random overripe bananas to make a double batch of banana chocolate chip muffins.

banana chocolate chip muffins

It’s always my goal to use up my bananas before they get to muffin/bread stage, but boy, these muffins are a life-saver when the bananas get the best of me.


Okee-doke-it’s your turn! Share five frugal things of your own in the comments.


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Sunday 11th of October 2015

1. Husband sold several computer hard drives on eBay -- we got extra cash and have less stuff to store for our move to Papua New Guinea. 2. I sold some furniture on a Facebook for sale group -- same result as #1 3. I made an Amazon wish list for items we need to take to PNG so that, hopefully, we'll get a few of the items for upcoming Christmas or b-day gifts. 4. Cooking meals with things from the pantry to try to use it up in the next few months before moving. 5. Sorted through the next 4 years of schoolbooks to pare down the number of boxes we need to ship to PNG.


Monday 12th of October 2015

Wow, it sounds like you have an exciting life change coming up!


Sunday 11th of October 2015

Let's see if I can do this! 1. Carpooled twice this week to work which saved me $10 on petrol and gave me someone to chat to! 2. Spent less than $7 on a birthday present for s friend of miss 6, by combining a $5 beach towel with a bubble toy I got at a garage sale a while ago for $1 (brand new), and a card from the stash (thrift store find at 20c each) and a gift bag recycled from a gift given to us. 3. Noticed a garage sale advertising girls clothes. Found fantastic quality brand name clothes in my younger daughter's size. Bought 3 items for $5 at the beginning of the day, and returned as the sale was finishing and negotiated 12 items for $12. 4. Went to a local church 's spring fair and found brand new maths sticker books (division and multiplication) for 10 CENTS each!! Bought 4. 5. Stretched the chicken breast I had across 2 meals rather than using it all up in one, and shifted today's planned meal into next week.


Friday 9th of October 2015

5 most frugal things this week: 1. Satisfied my purple desires with 2 pants and 2 tops for under $25 CDN. Bagged up items to retire for a local thrift store. 2. 6 pounds of Maxwell House coffee for $18 CDN on special at local grocer. 3. Harvested my green tomatoes for: 7 pints curried pickles, a quarter-bushel of newspaper-wrapped tomatoes to ripen for fall salads, oven roasted slices with parmesan for supper one night and for a party dish tonight. 4. Ate out of my fridge and freezer all week since we are going away for 3 weeks on Sunday. 5. Dried peppermint, catnip, and lemon balm (from my garden) for my own organic herbal teas.


Friday 9th of October 2015

This is only one frugal thing (I did others but they weren't as noteworthy) but it was HUGE! My dad is a "Mr Fix-it" and is teaching my husband how to be too. Well, our gas hot water heater quit heating water and the google searches (and my dad's lack of subject knowledge) led us to calling a plumber. The plumber said the part we needed had to come directly from the manufacturer (told us this over the phone, no site visit charge). I called and the manufacturer told us it was a free fix (no part needed), sent us a free instruction manual and my husband fixed it for free in about 5 minutes! We were so relieved as we do not have extra repair money right now! Lesson learned - calling the manufacturer to see if they have any suggestions first. I'm sure many don't but it was nice to know that it's a possibility! I'm willing to "waste" 5 minutes to give that a try next time too!


Friday 9th of October 2015

Yay!! What a wonderful solution to your problem.


Thursday 8th of October 2015

Kristen, just so you know, the pink "post comment" box at the bottom of your page is returning a "404 error" (page doesn't exist).

I love the five frugal things feature. I always get good ideas here! Mine are: 1. unpicked several zippers from non-wearable clothing for use in making zippered pouches for sale at a craft fair (my crafts are advertised as recycled or upcycled, so buyers are aware) 2. saved several things in the fridge by careful planning (I try to always do this, but as we all know, some times we are more successful than others ...) 3. returned faulty merchandise to a store for refund 4. altered a thrift store skirt costing $5 for my daughter - it was new with tags 5. packed a lunch for my husband, same as every weekday for the past three years (I eat at home)

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