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Five Frugal Things | We have bowls!

1. I got some free bowls

bowls on a shelf.

We had been making do with two cereal bowls plus some weird flat-ish bowls from the abandoned house. It was workable, but not ideal.

So when I saw that someone was offering a set of bowls on my Buy Nothing Group, I said, “Oooh, yes please.”

These are perfect for us.

stacked cereal bowls.

And since pretty much all my other dishes are white, these look nice on the open shelving.

More about Buy Nothing groups here (plus some photos of other goodies I’ve snagged!)

2. I bought a knife block from Facebook Marketplace

My knives have been jumbled in the silverware drawer ever since I moved here. And on Sunday of this week, I randomly decided that I was getting really tired of not having a knife block.

So, I found one on my Buy Nothing group. Sadly, it was too small to fit my chef’s knife, which is the main one I use. So, I will pass that block on to someone else.

But I did find a larger Henckels knife block on Facebook Marketplace for $15.

knife block.

Now my knives are tidy and easily accessible, and this block is as nice as the one I had at my other house. 🙂

3. I oiled my knives

As I was putting my knives into the new knife block, I realized that some of my abandoned-house knives had super dry handles.

dry knife handle.

(presumably from the previous owner putting them in the dishwasher!)

So, I used my Boos Block oil to remoisturize them, and now they look way newer.

before and after knife handle oiling.

More importantly, the wood is protected.

four knife handles.

I think there are cheaper oiling alternatives out there, but I got this $15 container of Boos oil with a cutting board in 2012, and it’s still half full. You only need a little at a time.

oiled knife handles.

Oiling dry wood is so rewarding; it almost makes me wish I had more dry knife handles!

four wooden knives.

4. I made yogurt and granola

Homemade yogurt topped with homemade granola makes for a very inexpensive breakfast.

bowl of yogurt and granola.

Raspberries and chia seeds are from Aldi. Bowls: from the Buy Nothing group. 🙂

bowl of yogurt and granola.

5. I…

  • walked to school even in the 36-degree weather 😉
  • used a bunch of leftovers to make a taco salad for lunch yesterday
  • used the backs of chemistry homework paper as scratch paper
  • used Get Upside for a gas discount (Use this link and enter code AFF25 for a $0.25/gallon extra discount)
  • made lots of pots of coffee at home

black coffee


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

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Saturday 26th of November 2022

Love those bowls!

Got gas for $2.39/gallon using my Kroger card discount. Totally skipped grocery shopping today(my normal shopping day)due to a ton of leftovers. I’ll need to fill in a bit mid-week is all. Eating out tomorrow night with a free meal coupon for my husband’s birthday. Sold nine items on eBay. Cooked from scratch.


Wednesday 23rd of November 2022

Love your bowls!! Perfect for yogurt with granola and fruit!!

My five frugal things... 1. Made granola - almost forgot about this until I saw yours. 2. Picked up Nicholas Spark's new book at the library. 3. Went through our gift box and found five Christmas gifts - checking off my list! 4. Went through a clothes my cousin was donating and found a North Face Jacket, Vest, and a new to me sweatshirt - so so happy about this!! 5. Asked my wonderful husband to make dinner on Friday and he did :) we almost always go out to eat on Fridays

Really good frugal week.


Wednesday 23rd of November 2022

1. I made all our meals at home. 2. We enjoyed free entertainment, which was easy because influenza went through the house. 3. We delivered fundraising material by walking (dragging a full wagon through the snow). 4. I wore shoes that I bought circa 1995. 5. I fixed my son's pants. 6. I bought a used book for a class. Even having to pay $4 for shipping, it was still cheaper than new. The book that came today is in much better shape than I expected.

Stephanie D

Tuesday 22nd of November 2022

That reminds me I need to oil my wooden spoons and cutting board as soon as I find a recipe. My daughter had found one on Pinterest and shared it with me, but I'm out.

Not too very frugal this week. 1. I've been working to use up as much as I can from the fridge and freezer--and last night I had half a lemon, half a bag of carrots, 2 onions and 2 butternut squash in the produce drawers. Did the same kind of thing in the pantry and freezer, but when I went to the grocery store today, I spent more than I usually do because I was out of so much. Guess I broke even.

2. However, the bank caught some fraudulent charging attempts on our credit card last week, and blocked the card. The charges were attempted around 5 am local time, and neither of us was even awake then. We're still waiting for the replacement cards to arrive, which is so inconvenient, but it has slowed down our spending somewhat. But some monthly charges, such as Netflix, come off that card, so hoping the cards come in before we get late charges.

3. At the thrift store yesterday, I found one of those extra large umbrellas for $2.00. All I need to do is stitch new squares of Velcro to the strap and it's good to go. Nothing else wrong with it. My sister-in-law keeps extra umbrellas in her car for emergencies, such as when she passed a lady who'd been in a fender-bender and was having to wait around, give statements, etc. My SIL was able to just give her an umbrella and make her day just a bit easier to get through.

4. My Medicare Advantage plan has a program where I can earn "money" for exercising, getting my mammogram, going for an annual check up, getting an eye exam, checking my A1C, etc. So far this year, I've earned $200, which are payable to me in gift cards. I ordered five $25 gas gift cards, one $25 Kohl's gift card, and a $75 Home Depot card. Since it ends 12/31 of each year, I will enter my order for however much I earn between now and then and have the cards for next year. The gas cards will go in Christmas cards to the trash pickup guys, the recycle pickup gal, and my postal worker and his substitute. The Kohl's card will go to the gal at my hair salon who will be going on maternity leave at the end of the year. So service folk gifts are done, and didn't cost me a penny! (The Home Depot card is for me!)

5. Did rearranging in my craft room this week and cleared out a lot. Filled 2 Grab bags alone for members in my Buy Nothing group, and got rid of projects I will never do. (And the guilt they were causing me, too! lol ). Freed up some bins that will now be used for organizing in the shed or garage. THEN, I lucked up on someone else in the group giving away a small rolling desk chair. Needs a bit of cleaning, but it's the perfect size for my second sewing machine that sits at a small desk. I was having to roll my chair from table to desk and back again whenever I had two projects going, but now I can just leave them in place because I also have the room to do so! Win-Win!

Stephanie D

Tuesday 22nd of November 2022

Oh, and this wasn't due to anything I did, but it was a nice serendipity just the same. When I got home from picking up the groceries I'd ordered online, I found a bag that wasn't mine. It had 2 different kinds of ice cream, and a frozen deep dish apple pie in it. I phoned the store, gave them the customer's first name and abbreviated last name that was on the bag, and they told me not to bring the items back to the store, they had it covered.

Well, I'm vegan, so none of it was something I'd eat, but my hubby wanted the black cherry ice cream. I texted a neighbor who was delighted to send her husband for the other ice cream and the pie. In addition, one of my Buy Nothing members dropped off a costco pumpkin pie for me, saying she appreciated all I do in the group (I started the group, and am the most active admin.) Again, I won't be eating it, but now I have free desserts for when my daughter and granddaughter come over on Friday!


Tuesday 22nd of November 2022

Hi Kristin, I would have had such a hard time without my collection of bowls, I have quite a few and they all seem to get used regularly. Your new ones are very cute though! I am sorry you had to leave so many of your things behind, it makes me sad that you went without dishes this long.

I didn't have the most frugal week, dd#2's 16th birthday is next Monday and dd#1 is coming home for the weekend. As I was still in covid self-isolation, dd#2 was able to buy a few gifts for me for dd#1 (a couple of things she wanted and were out of stock online) and get her student athlete discount. Yes, she graduated in May but for some reason her varsity team discount remains in place so yes, we'll use it.

- bought scented candles for Christmas gifts online at a huge discount, quite thrilled with the sale price combined with a special code I had received earlier in the fall. - bought perfume for dd#1 on sale for $55, added one mascara and one blush (all for Christmas) to get over $75 and received $20 on my points card which can be redeemed for groceries. My points card is up to nearly $600 which is really awesome as today my half full furnace oil tank was filled at a cost of $965. This winter is going to be painful. - sold another few things on marketplace including a case of protein shakes that I didn't care for. - grated the last of my garden zucchini, made chocolate zucchini loaf (x2) and froze the rest to use in the winter. Gifted one loaf to my parents (who also have covid thanks to yours truly). -cooked every meal at home, packed lunches for dd#2.

I guess it wasn't as a bad a week as I thought, just more shopping than I'd like. I'd love to know what you do, Kristin, for your kids' birthdays and Christmases. I feel like I'm at a bit of a crossroads right now and having a hard time thinking ahead.

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