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The Top Five FG Posts from 2015

In recent years, I’ve dug through my analytics at the end of the year to see which 2015 posts ended up being the most popular.

I love reading these roundups on other blogs, so I’m posting these here for your reading pleasure!

1.  How to repair a zipper

I tried this out on a pair of outgrown jeans, just because I wanted to see if it worked, and it did!

how to fix a broken zipper | cut bottom

There was some talk in the comments about this method not working on coil zippers (as opposed to the metal sort), but my sister tried it out on a lunch box, which definitely had a coil zipper and it worked.

Soo, if you have a bum zipper, do give this a try.   It just takes a few minutes and is way, way easier than replacing an entire zipper.

And it is also far less expensive than replacing an entire piece of clothing.

(Related, from the year before: How to replace a broken jean button  Easy!   Cheap! Kind of

2.  How to get rid of lice with tea tree oil (not insecticide)

I wrote this post based on my experience with all 4 of my kids getting lice at the same time.   Oy.   After trial and error and much spending, I landed on a frugal, natural solution that was WAY more effective than that useless Nix insecticide.

how to get rid of lice without insecticide

Lots of people have been finding this post via google, and since I could seriously have used this kind of info and reassurance when I was in the thick of it, it makes me so happy to provide that other stressed-out parents.

(If you have school-aged children, pin the post now so you have it in case the little bugs give you a visit.)

3.  I think I am just DONE with natural laundry detergents.

It cracks me up that this was one of my most-trafficked 2015 posts.   I wrote it after getting fed up (again) with the  eau de hamper scent I kept getting with natural detergent.

costco laundry detergent

Traditional laundry soap and I are just gonna be best buds for life.

4.  What are your favorite fallback meals?

When I wrote 7 Reasons You’re Eating Out So Much, I mentioned the concept of a fallback meal, and in this post, I shared some of my favorites and you all shared yours in the comments too.

pizza subs

If you need to add some quick and easy fallback meals to your repertoire, read through all the helpful suggestions there!

5.  On Frugality and Teenagers

We’ve got a 16 year old and a 14 year old so far, and it won’t be long until the younger two hit the teen years as well.    In this post, I shared my thoughts on six topics as they relate to teens (food spending, extra-curricular activities, smartphones, and more.)

Joshua and Lisey

You guys, thank you so much for reading my blog.   I know I say this a lot, but I really am blessed to have a really delightful group of people here.

There are so many kind, thoughtful, respectful readers in this space, and since that’s not really true of the internet at large, I’m doubly grateful for all of you.

Thank you for reading. And commenting.   And sharing my posts. And telling your friends about my blog. You all are the greatest, and this blog would be nowhere without all of you.

I’m excited to serve up another year of frugal goodness (with a big scoop of cheerfulness) here on this blog and I’m so glad that you are here.

(Insert group hug here.   Unless you hate hugs.   In that case, please feel my affection from an appropriate distance.)

Happy new year!

Bonus For People Who Like Lists:   Just in case you’re curious, here are the top five FG posts of all time. Most of these are enduringly popular because they’re topics that people google.   I think it’s pretty funny that my roasted carrot post is always in this list…you just never know what will catch on!

1.  How to paint wooden furniture
2.  How to make homemade yogurt
3.  Easy, ridiculously good roasted carrots
4.  How we watch TV without cable
5.  I fixed my dryer! All by myself!*

(*It turns out that the squeaky dryer fix I did was not the best thing ever. So I ended up replacing the rollers and THAT has done the trick.   I told about that in  You Don’t Need Whiskers To Do That. And I updated the original dryer post to reflect that.)

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Monday 4th of January 2016

I'm pretty sure the universe sent me to your website for your fallback recipe post. It saved my butt tonight and probably for the rest of the week! Ha, some weeks are just lazy weeks (or years?).


Monday 4th of January 2016

Yay! I'm so glad it's saving you moola this week.

Gina B

Sunday 3rd of January 2016

Happy New Year to you and your sweet family! I too find your blog motivating and inspirational. Keep up the fantastic work, it is truly appreciated!!!

My job is rather stressful with many long hours due to meetings or deadlines. I have stayed home (and in lounging clothes) for the last three days and have found it to be energizing and relaxing at the same time.

We also live in an area that does not provide many fine dining options therefore cooking at home is the healthier and more budget friendly option. Making meals such as ground turkey that can be served in a variety of ways, tacos, nachos, taco salad or to top a baked potato or pizza are a big help.

For me, accepting that all meals need not be gourmet is key. Keeping it simple works best for me. :)


Sunday 3rd of January 2016

Hi Kristen! I just want to say that I have enjoyed reading your blog and taking advice from you for the last few years. I am happy to report that I am coming home, yet again, from having to work outside the home full time for the past 2 years. My daughter will be turning 13 this month. I have had people tell me she is old enough and is learning responsibility by me not being around as much, but I knew in my heart that it was time to come home again and give my family 100% (100% in my opinion, my family......not judging anyone else!) (even if I am not bringing home a steady paycheck.) I am really looking forward to utilizing the money saving, time saving and sanity saving ideas you so graciously share with all of us out here. I am ready to "take back control" of my household, my budget (no time = more spending in this house........) and my life. In turn, my husband and daughter can breathe easier too! I know this comment may have little to do with the above post, but I just wanted to express my gratitude. Thank you for all you do!

Brook Hart

Saturday 2nd of January 2016

I must have been in a blog reading rut, I have read the same blogs for years and have gotten bored for numerous reasons. I love your blog and look forward to reading all the newest tidbits you have just posted. Your comment about the laundry detergent has been the first I have seen about the odor. We started making our own detergent two months ago. My son had complained and I thought he was just grumbling because I wasn't buying Gain detergent. Soon after I kept getting whiffs of something weird. Turn's out it was the laundry. I have spent the last couple of weeks rewashing everything in the house. I definitely saved no money on that frugality. I just stocked up on pods with a great coupon deal. I may have to hide them from the teenagers, but we won't smell funky. ( Yes I hide things. My kids think washing one pair of jeans is frugal,

Mona Mayo

Thursday 31st of December 2015

Happy new year to you and your family. Your frugal posts and positive attitude are appreciated year round. I agree about the odor problem when I was using homemade laundry soap. I was happy to make it and use it and my clothes looked clean, but they never really smelled the way I wanted them to. I thought of trying the essential oils that some had mentioned, but just to 'try' them seemed expensive and I worried that they would not help the situation, so, like you, I opted to go back to a store bought brand.

Probably my most favorite post of yours and the one that has saved us the most money was the one concerning repair of your dryer. Our dryer was working fine, but not long after your post, the washer developed a problem. After re-reading that post, we learned how to diagnose the problem, order the part and install it. Just this past month, our dryer quit heating. In a short time and for less than $35 (which included shipping), we repaired the dryer. So, thank you for helping us be frugal.


Thursday 31st of December 2015

That's so awesome! I just love it when something I share helps people save money.

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