Friday, January 28, 2022

Frugal Friday

 We're back to Friday! Here we go with a list of frugal activities for the week. 

Saving on things we buy

  • It's unclear if this will save me any money, but filled out the Old Navy settlement info, as I qualified. If it works, I'll get a $5 voucher to spend. 
  • Used a grocery store gift card to pick up a few things I needed, plus the Red Baron freebie pizza via iBotta. While I was there, I returned a few carts, and noticed two of them had receipts in them. I took them home, scanned them on Fetch, and one had a $2.50 offer for the receipt. That never happens! Another put me within $4 of a "spend $15, get $5 back", so I'll go in & pick up one of the $4 items on the list of qualified products, and get $5 back. Winner, winner.  
  • Used United credit from some long cancelled COVID trip to cover most of a one way flight to Hawaii. I will be coming back :-), but am booking the return flight on another airline, due to weird flight times & needing to align with my mom & sister. I used Alaska money, available from yet another cancelled trip to book the return flight. 
  • My mom & sister will be flying out of the same airport, so I'm using a companion fare for their flights, which saves almost $500. I get the companion fare from our credit card. For the remainder of the cost, I bought an Alaska gift card via Costco, which is 10% off, and I earn another 3% in rewards, and then purchased the flights. Every bit helps!

Earning money

  • No side hustle money was earned this week. I did list another item on eBay, but things have been really slow going. 
  • I did, however, find a penny on the ground at the soccer game, so I'm very much raking it in!
  • Had enough to cash $25.99 out on iBotta
  • Earned a very unexpected bonus at work, which I will use for a girls weekend this spring
Avoiding spending

  • Sam asked for mechanical pencils for his birthday. I ordered some, and used an Amazon gift card I had (from cashing in change), which covered the cost. 
  • Picked up a can of soup that was a Friday freebie at the store
  • Redeemed Starbucks rewards that were expiring, and got a breakfast sandwich & a tea

Eating what we have

  • It was a "use it up" type of a week, given I didn't cook over the weekend while we were out of town. As a result, there's more bits & bobs than usual. That's fine - it all has to get eaten up!
  • I'd picked up a package of teriyaki soba noodles at Costco a few weeks back, but had no real plans for it. Served it with 1/2 a bag of coconut shrimp that I also had no plans for as dinner one night. We thought the soba was just "okay". Sam loves Asian food, so this was primarily purchased for him, but we all thought it was pretty bland. It was very inexpensive, and made quite a bit, so at least there's that. I've had it for a few lunches, and it's fine.
  • Made a smoothie for lunch, to use up a banana, frozen mango, & protein powder.
  • Ate meatball soup for two lunches, and had leftover holiday crackers with my soup
  • We used up the last of some rice for dinner, with fesenjan. I had one serving in the fridge, and defrosted a bit more from the freezer to round things out for two dinner portions.
  • Reheated leftover wings to go with dinner for M, and served it with yet another freezer meal - egg roll in a bowl. Neither were enough on their own, but were great together. 
  • Nick had a chicken patty sandwich on a bagel, taking advantage of leftover bagels from our trip. 
  • We finished off a bag of panko crusted chicken for dinner one night. It was fine, but we prefer other types of chicken, so we won't buy it again. Good to have it out of the freezer. Nick had his with yet another leftover ski breakfast bagel. 
  • A few weeks ago, a neighbor on Buy Nothing was giving away M's favorite cauliflower rice, and Costco no longer carries it. I was thrilled to get it, but she had a few other items that "went with" the rice. I used the chicken broth right away, and had two boxes of Trader Joes white cheddar mac & cheese. Nick can be picky about his mac & cheese, but I opted to make lunch for the boys & they ate both boxes. I also made them smoothies for lunch, which used up the last two bananas, frozen fruit & some apple juice. I still have a few boxed items from the Buy Nothing pick up, so I'll work those into the rotation as well.
  • Made The Frugal girl recipe for granola bars, which are easy & always a hit. 
  • Similar to the mac & cheese above, made a box of brownies, using a boxed mix from the same Buy Nothing pickup. 

For others

  • I noticed a car trying to park at the grocery store, but there was a cart blocking the spot. I was on my way in, so I grabbed the cart & waved them in, so they could park their car. The gentleman was very friendly, which is always so nice. 
  • Covering travel for a few upcoming trips, which is one of my favorite things to do - giving experiences vs gifts! 
  • Volunteering at a food pantry
  • Had a call with recently resettled Afghani mentee, as well as with work mentee
  • Regular check ins as part of non-profit role
That's it from my side. What about you? Any wins to share?


  1. Airfare bookings for the win! I have to get my daughters and mine scheduled this weekend. I hear though there are better days to book-on-Weds, don't know if that is true but I might do the leg work, delete my browser history, then look again on Monday with a game plan. As we'll need two sets of one way because we're taking a train between locations, it's bit complicated for my brain.

  2. I don’t know if it is a win exactly but I got chicken thighs at Target, as well as lunch meat, sandwich bread, homemade hamburger buns from their bakery, spinach, potatoes, Gatorade, cheese, and bananas. It is two minutes from my weekend house so I was pretty happy to get groceries from there. They also wear masks, and it was not crowded at 8 am. I am still very cautious and shop when crowds are light. I consider the win to be not getting sick. Cindy in the South

  3. You had some big wins this week, and finishing off the bits and pieces of leftovers is both a time and financial win!
    Small acts of kindness like moving the grocery cart are so important. It would be great if every day we all did at least one small thing.

  4. Well I am using up some food that needed to be eaten so that is always a win. I have just been a little more tired lately.

  5. You always do such a great job. Keep it up! :)

  6. Wonderful wins this week, and using up the bits and bobs lurking in a freezer is always a big win in my books.

    God bless.