Every Monday, I answer a few of the questions that my readers send me. If you have a question you’d like me to answer in a future Q&A post, just leave me a comment here or email me (thefrugalgirl [at] gmail [dot] com) and put Q&A in the subject line. I look forward to hearing from you!
You may have mentioned this at some point and I missed it, or maybe he wants to keep it private, but I have always wondered what Mr. FG does for work. He has such early hours and you mentioned today that he rarely gets a holiday off.
Mr. FG works in IT (computer stuff!), and his particular department is a 24/7/364 kind of department. So, they work in 3 shifts around the clock, and believe it or not, Mr. FG’s shift is the best of the 3!
Because his department works around the clock and around the year, they still have to work even when the rest of the departments are off for a holiday. Fortunately, they can run with more minimal staffing on some holidays, so he’s getting to take off for Thanksgiving and Christmas. We’re very happy about that!
How do you keep track of all those library books??? Usually I try to limit us to [only] about 15 books per visit, and I manage to lose one just about every time. Surely you have some genius system.. Or maybe your house is so well organized those books just pop right out at you.
As you’ve noticed, we do tend to get a few more than 15 books when we go to the library! I find it to be a fair amount of work to do a library trip, so when we go, we get enough books to last us for a while.
To keep our library books separate from our other books, I keep a large basket in the living room specifically for library books (the books we own are stored on bookshelves). Of course, the library books do travel to other parts of the house, but when we do our daily (well, it’s supposed to be daily!) cleanup, we return the errant library books back to the basket.
We do temporarily lose a book sometimes, but all except for once, we’ve always managed to find the missing book (the “Hello, Doctor!” book is still lost, so we had to pay for that one!).
I wanted to ask you if you have any advice for saving cost on special foods. Hmm maybe I should be more specific, you see my youngest is autistic and can not break down casein so this has meant I have had to change how I bake and cook so that he is able to eat what ever I am making. I will say those Texas chocolate cupcakes you put up were great, even after changing the recipe to dairy free. However my problem is the cost of vegan or dairy/soy free foods, I was hoping that you might have heard of ways to cut costs.
I don’t have a lot of experience with this, but I’ve read a number of gluten-free and vegan blogs. From what I gather, the best way to deal with a problem like this is to embrace the foods you can eat instead of trying to find substitutes for all the foods you can’t eat.
For instance, buying vegan cheese will cost you an arm and a leg (and from what I understand, vegan cheese doesn’t even really taste like cheese!), but buying foods that are naturally vegan won’t be nearly as expensive.
I recommend checking out Vegan Yum-Yum. She generally cooks things from scratch and she doesn’t tend to rely on substitute foods very often. Though I’ve never made any of her recipes, they look super delicious…like the sort of thing non-vegans would even love. You might also enjoy Gluten-Free Girl, as she prepares a lot of foods that are vegan and often offers dairy-free advice.
As with a regular diet, you’ll probably be able to save the most money by avoiding prepared foods. Non-specialty prepared foods are fairly expensive, but specialty prepared foods seem to be even more expensive. It also might be wise to check and see if you can buy any vegan/dairy-free foods in bulk online. And a more off-the-wall idea is to use your Swagbucks to buy some of your special foods online (I know Amazon sells coconut oil, a common dairy-free substitution for butter in baking and in frostings, and I bet they sell more vegan, dairy-free foods too).
Readers, I’m sure that a number of you have much more experience with a vegan, dairy/soy-free diet than I do, so please share your advice with Katie!
Today’s 365 post: Three Little Chefs
and yesterday’s laaaate 365 post was This is How We Roll