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Five Frugal Things | When cats eat cables

1. I sold an Apple laptop charger

About a year ago, our cat left some teeth marks in my laptop charging cable.

A cable with cat bites.

It wasn’t enough to break all the way through the coating, but I figured it was only a matter of time before she took another bite at the cable. So, I got a backup charger, and just kept it in the package for such a day.

Cat in blanket.

She looks so innocent

Well, my laptop died earlier this year, and I ended up needing to replace the whole thing.

That meant my brand new charging cable was no longer going to be useful. And it was too late to return it.

So of course I listed it on eBay.

Apple laptop charger in box.

And happily, it sold this week!

2. Zoe and I used a B1G1 Starbucks deal

After church on Sunday, she suggested we stop in at Starbucks. Both of us had gift cards in our Starbucks accounts, so our drinks were going to be free.

But as I was placing my order, I saw that my app had a buy one, get one free offer.

Kristen's hand holding a Starbucks drink.

I was like, “Hold up, Zoe! Don’t order yet! You can get a free drink when I buy one.”

So then Zoe didn’t have to use her gift card at all.

3. I got free eggs + cheap cheese at Safeway

Zoe needed to stop in for some makeup remover, and as we walked in, I remembered to check the Safeway app to see if there were any good deals.

two blocks of Safeway cheese.

It’s been slim pickings in the deals of late, but I’m glad I checked this time because I got an offer for a dozen free eggs, plus an offer to get two 8-ounce blocks of cheese for $0.99 each. SWEET.

A dozen eggs in a cardboard carton.

4. I got a discounted offer on a pair of eBay shoes

I’ve been wanting a pair of blue Converse for a while, so I scrolled through eBay and added a bunch of options to my watchlist.

(There’s something about Converse that makes me want to buy a pair in every color. And since most of my clothes are so neutral, I can usually pair colorful shoes with almost any of my outfits. 😉 )

red Converse low-tops from eBay

These are my happy red Converse. Also from eBay.

I checked my email after I hopped off the eBay site, and was surprised to see that I got a bunch of seller offers in my inbox! This has never happened before, but some auto-offer must be kicked off when you add certain items to a watchlist.

I chose an offer that gave me 38% off the original price, and I placed my order.

This pair I bought does need a set of new laces, so I ordered these ones from Amazon, and hopefully, they will be a good match. I’ll let you know!

5. I…

  • sold a nativity on Facebook marketplace
  • sold a schoolbook on eBay
  • ate some random meals to use up fridge odds and ends
  • washed some old shoes to spruce them up

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Wednesday 24th of August 2022

I'm cracking up at the placement of your "innocent looking" kitty photo after the chewed up laptop charger image! Too perfect. LOL Cats are definitely lucky they are so cute!!


Wednesday 24th of August 2022

One of our tuxedo kitties loves cables too. Well, really she just loves to CHEW so I found a few toys she likes that are good for that and, as she's gotten older, the cable chewing seems to have lessened!

We...ate meals at camp this week, including freezer leftovers, used our golf card for very discounted golf nearby, have been eating produce from the garden instead of having to buy it, and ... I'm sure I'll think of a few other things!


Wednesday 24th of August 2022

My most frugal thing this week was pre buying our Winter heating propane. When the company sent the offer I pulled out last years bills and figured out that we would save quite a bit of money by pre buying. It was quite a large amount of money up front, but I can rest easier knowing that there will be no big heating bills coming this Winter. I call the peace of mind a big win!

Lindsay B

Tuesday 23rd of August 2022

Yay for great prices on cheese! Like all groceries it's so expensive these days.

1. I’ve been looking online for inspiration to help think about how to best arrange/use our home (we bought our first house in March). While it is helpful to see ideas online, I’ve also been feeling discontent with what I have. I’m trying to fight against this by doing some deep cleaning. In particular, dusting helped me feel better the other day… and today I finally got around to cleaning the grout in our bathroom. You should see the before and afters, blech!! Being content with what we have = being frugal.

2. Realized I am wearing Chacos that I purchased in 2009– they are still going strong and this makes me really happy! Although after I wrote this, I looked closer at the soles and they are starting to come apart… more than I realized, and I don’t know that they can be glued. Fingers crossed they will last several more years though!

3. Picked some elderberries locally, my first ever. I’m not going to make the ubiquitous elderberry syrup I always read about for colds/viruses, but will instead add them to either steel-cut oats or a baked treat like rhubarb cake.

4. Was given a book that I had already read via the library, and which I also didn’t like. I strongly dislike keeping that kind of thing, so I was able to exchange it at B&N for a book I actually wanted on foraging (yay!). Even though I had to pay $10 to cover the difference, I feel like it’s frugal to exchange a book I don’t want for one I really do want. If not frugal, at least satisfying.

5. Baby E is big enough to need a high chair as he starts solids… but when DH and I looked at Once Upon a Child, they all seemed to take up so much floor space! We ended up with a really nice booster seat that straps onto a dining chair but adjusts up and down. It fits Baby E perfectly and this way he can sit at the table with us for family meals. It was also half the cost of the cheapest & junkiest high chair, so that’s a bonus. More than being “just” frugal, it is super satisfying to be able to come up with just the right thing at the beginning rather than buying a high chair now then needing a booster seat anyway as he continues to grow.

6. Oh! And went into Target and saw umbrellas for a good price with a lifetime replacement guarantee. Ours are years old and falling apart! Checked the circle app and had a 30% coupon that brought the price down even more. Even more frugal: I didn’t walk out with the entire store, ha.

Sarah K

Tuesday 23rd of August 2022

I am feeling super depressed and pointless about any attempts at frugality as we just had to take two kids for ER treatment after a bat exposure. Likely $$$$. Any tips from others about maintaining motivation when any savings seem almost irrelevant compared to the bills you are facing?

Sarah K

Thursday 25th of August 2022

@Suz, thank you. Yes the unexpected aspect of it is frustrating.


Wednesday 24th of August 2022

@Sarah K, I don't have any great tips but I did want to say I'm sorry this happened to you and I feel your pain! It's especially frustrating when you're hit with a big expense that's also unexpected. I like Lindsay B's tip about enjoying any small frugal wins that come your way too - in my book they earn extra gold stars in situations like this!

Sarah K

Tuesday 23rd of August 2022

@Lindsay B, thank you for your kind comment. Having to give a bunch of shots to a baby who doesn't understand why would have been miserable - glad you dodged that bullet. :)

Lindsay B

Tuesday 23rd of August 2022

@Sarah K, I'm so sorry about the bat exposures and ER bills! We had a bat find its way into our house somehow this past week and I was incredibly grateful that our baby's door was closed, otherwise we would have been in the ER too. I'm so sorry that happened to your family, but I hope everyone is well and stays healthy.

Re: your request for tips, I don't have anything to offer that wouldn't seem trite. When so many things seem outside of your control, frugal-wise and otherwise, maybe it would help to feel like even something little and seemingly irrelevant, like a tiny frugal "win," is within your control? I hope others including Kristen will chime in with their thoughts and encouragement.

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