Author Topic: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?  (Read 5010698 times)

Dicey

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12400 on: December 16, 2018, 10:32:17 PM »
Never got dressed, never left the house. Put up Christmas decorations. Rested.

Unique User

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12401 on: December 17, 2018, 05:54:28 AM »
Made a spatchcock chicken and put the back bone and all the scrap bones into the slow cooker with carrots, celery, onions, better than broth paste and water. Plus a little garlic powder. It will cook all night long to make bone broth.  The celery was a bit wimpy so good way to use it up. I poured in some of the drippings from the foil from cooking the chicken. There was a few onion slices and celery too. So all of that stuff will cook around 16 hours or more when I get up tomorrow morning. I just love making broth out of 'useless' bones and wimpy veggies!

:)  We did a spatchcock turkey this weekend and made stock from the bones.  We also ate at home all week and continued the quest to use items from our freezer. 

Made a conscious use of rewards and $5 off $5/$10 off $10 coupons that normally get tossed to stop for stocking stuffers or items for DD to use for secret santa if I was passing by. 

Read about online beer rebates on a coupon blog for a local store I check occasionally.  Slickdeals has a wiki that they keep track of the rebates, not sure if I can link it but if you google Anheuser Busch online rebates and slickdeals it's easy to find.  Took me about 20 minutes to find receipts and submit for $16 of items I already purchased. 

The big one is that I spoke with a realtor where our rental houses are and due to Hurricane Florence, times to sell have really shortened and prices have increased a bit.  The realtor recommended an aggressive price that he thought would sell in 2-3 weeks that is $12k more than I thought.  So, we'll talk to one tenant the end of the month to let him know we're listing the house the beginning of March (which incidentally is his three year mark for being in the house).  Super excited about the thought of that house being sold, we don't have a mortgage on the other and it's in a very hot neighborhood so we'll probably sell it the following year.   

Slow&Steady

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12402 on: December 17, 2018, 06:53:53 AM »
Not a small thing but we installed an outdoor wood burning furnance/boiler at the house a couple weeks ago that is tied into our HVAC and our water heater! We live in the country and have plenty of wood to provide free fuel, just need to clean up our "forest".  I expect this will save us ~ $1k per year in energy cost but it will also provide exercise and allow us to do some much needed "forest" maintenance/clean up on the property. In the 4 winter months last year we averaged 154 kWh per day! Since installing this thing we are down to an average of 92 kWh per day and I am expecting that to continue to decrease as we have only had the water heater connected for a couple days.  Yes that is still a lot of energy, no we don't have gas heat as an option.

Mind if I ask what the purchase and installation costs were?  I use an indoor wood burner, but have often thought about what it would do to be able to sent heat to 2.5 floors and not deal with the indoor mess.

This is the brand that we purchased https://earthoutdoorfurnaces.com/ and the prices can be found on the website.  We paid for delivery but did the install ourselves.  There are cheaper models out there but this band had an EPA certification, which is important to me.  In addition to the furnace, we also purchased the underground (insulated) pipe, the heat exchanger to connect to the HVAC, and the plate heat exchanger for the water heater.  We built/poured the concrete slab ourselves and got the rest of the PEX and fittings from the local hardware store.  I have since learned that there are better options for the underground pipe but I at this point I am not digging it up so we will see how long this stuff last. 
« Last Edit: December 17, 2018, 06:56:09 AM by Slow&Steady »

Raenia

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12403 on: December 17, 2018, 08:59:50 AM »
Changed the oil in my car myself instead of paying to have it done at a garage.  I know this is considered very basic here, but it is actually difficult for me because I am prohibited by my lease from doing any car work in the parking lot.  I have had this problem for the last several years, ever since I owned a car, so I had never done it before.  Since I was visiting my dad over the weekend, I asked him to supervise me and let me use his equipment.  In addition to a private driveway and garage space, he has proper ramps instead of jacks, a designated bin to collect the old oil, and a place nearby that accepts used oil for recycling.

I think it was his favorite part of our visit, having me ask him for help and passing on some of his knowledge.  He was only disappointed that my DH wasn't interested in learning as well.

radram

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12404 on: December 17, 2018, 04:44:27 PM »
Changed the oil in my car myself instead of paying to have it done at a garage.  I know this is considered very basic here, but it is actually difficult for me because I am prohibited by my lease from doing any car work in the parking lot.  I have had this problem for the last several years, ever since I owned a car, so I had never done it before.  Since I was visiting my dad over the weekend, I asked him to supervise me and let me use his equipment.  In addition to a private driveway and garage space, he has proper ramps instead of jacks, a designated bin to collect the old oil, and a place nearby that accepts used oil for recycling.

I think it was his favorite part of our visit, having me ask him for help and passing on some of his knowledge.  He was only disappointed that my DH wasn't interested in learning as well.
Congratulations. Feels great to save about $15-$20 by turning 2 screws, doesn't it? Keep open to doing more on your own or with your fathers help. Youtube is a great friend.




Linea_Norway

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12405 on: December 18, 2018, 06:21:55 AM »
Changed the oil in my car myself instead of paying to have it done at a garage.  I know this is considered very basic here, but it is actually difficult for me because I am prohibited by my lease from doing any car work in the parking lot.  I have had this problem for the last several years, ever since I owned a car, so I had never done it before.  Since I was visiting my dad over the weekend, I asked him to supervise me and let me use his equipment.  In addition to a private driveway and garage space, he has proper ramps instead of jacks, a designated bin to collect the old oil, and a place nearby that accepts used oil for recycling.

I think it was his favorite part of our visit, having me ask him for help and passing on some of his knowledge.  He was only disappointed that my DH wasn't interested in learning as well.

Did you remember to change the oil filter as well? That is smart to do in the same operation, which I assume your father knows.

Using good equipment, like a proper ramp, make the job a lot easier. I have such a place at work that we sometimes use. I am not looking forward to missing out the day I'm going to FIRE.

Raenia

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12406 on: December 18, 2018, 06:30:25 AM »
Changed the oil in my car myself instead of paying to have it done at a garage.  I know this is considered very basic here, but it is actually difficult for me because I am prohibited by my lease from doing any car work in the parking lot.  I have had this problem for the last several years, ever since I owned a car, so I had never done it before.  Since I was visiting my dad over the weekend, I asked him to supervise me and let me use his equipment.  In addition to a private driveway and garage space, he has proper ramps instead of jacks, a designated bin to collect the old oil, and a place nearby that accepts used oil for recycling.

I think it was his favorite part of our visit, having me ask him for help and passing on some of his knowledge.  He was only disappointed that my DH wasn't interested in learning as well.

Did you remember to change the oil filter as well? That is smart to do in the same operation, which I assume your father knows.

Using good equipment, like a proper ramp, make the job a lot easier. I have such a place at work that we sometimes use. I am not looking forward to missing out the day I'm going to FIRE.

Yes, we changed the filter as well :)  I'm considering asking for ramps for Christmas next year, assuming we've moved into a house with a driveway and/or garage by then, as planned.  So much safer than just jacking up the car.

Hirondelle

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12407 on: December 18, 2018, 06:44:22 AM »
Went to the student dentist, which gives a 25% discount for care that actually seems more elaborately done!

Roadrunner53

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12408 on: December 18, 2018, 06:52:17 AM »
Going to make a home made potato soup today. I have taters that are getting old and before they go bad I will use them. I made a home made chicken broth yesterday that will be used in the potato soup. I have everything I need to make the soup and it is windy and bitter cold today so it should be awesome!

So no cash in the trash with the taters!

Slow&Steady

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12409 on: December 18, 2018, 07:28:41 AM »
Had DH turn the chicken noodle soup from last week (that nobody liked) into chicken pot pie, last night.  It wasn't the most flavorful but it didn't end up in the trash!

Thinking about having him turn some taco soup/chili/whatever it was into burritos either tonight or tomorrow.

Brought different leftovers to work today.

We either always have leftover or never have leftover, kids are picky creatures that will eat everything one day and (seemingly) not enough to survive the next day.

Roadrunner53

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12410 on: December 18, 2018, 07:57:01 AM »
Had DH turn the chicken noodle soup from last week (that nobody liked) into chicken pot pie, last night.  It wasn't the most flavorful but it didn't end up in the trash!

Thinking about having him turn some taco soup/chili/whatever it was into burritos either tonight or tomorrow.

Brought different leftovers to work today.

We either always have leftover or never have leftover, kids are picky creatures that will eat everything one day and (seemingly) not enough to survive the next day.

Have you tried using Campbells cream of chicken soup to thicken and flavor the chicken soup for the pot pie. Really good!

Slow&Steady

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12411 on: December 18, 2018, 08:19:57 AM »
Had DH turn the chicken noodle soup from last week (that nobody liked) into chicken pot pie, last night.  It wasn't the most flavorful but it didn't end up in the trash!

Thinking about having him turn some taco soup/chili/whatever it was into burritos either tonight or tomorrow.

Brought different leftovers to work today.

We either always have leftover or never have leftover, kids are picky creatures that will eat everything one day and (seemingly) not enough to survive the next day.

Have you tried using Campbells cream of chicken soup to thicken and flavor the chicken soup for the pot pie. Really good!

I can not have any dairy or soy so it makes things much more interesting.  In the past I believe cream of chicken soup is what DH used in pot pie but now he makes his own rue (? I am not a cook so I am guessing that is the right term) to thicken up the soup for pot pie.

Bracken_Joy

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12412 on: December 18, 2018, 08:26:18 AM »
Had DH turn the chicken noodle soup from last week (that nobody liked) into chicken pot pie, last night.  It wasn't the most flavorful but it didn't end up in the trash!

Thinking about having him turn some taco soup/chili/whatever it was into burritos either tonight or tomorrow.

Brought different leftovers to work today.

We either always have leftover or never have leftover, kids are picky creatures that will eat everything one day and (seemingly) not enough to survive the next day.

Have you tried using Campbells cream of chicken soup to thicken and flavor the chicken soup for the pot pie. Really good!

I can not have any dairy or soy so it makes things much more interesting.  In the past I believe cream of chicken soup is what DH used in pot pie but now he makes his own rue (? I am not a cook so I am guessing that is the right term) to thicken up the soup for pot pie.

You can totally make a real foods gluten free dairy free cream of chicken soup! https://www.yourhomebasedmom.com/dairy-free-and-gluten-free-cream-chicken-soup/ And just a dairy free one: https://mywisemom.com/dairy-free-cream-of-chicken-soup Same idea on the spices either way. That'd help you get a little more flavor than just a roux =) Although a roux will still have more flavor that just cornstarch or arrowroot powder, so it's still a solid option.


As for me:
Yesterday worked on eating some odds and ends from the pantry. Ate some leftover lentil pasta. Used the need to use up a squash to guide what we had for dinner.
Walked to yoga, as usual. On the way home, picked up cream cheese to ensure I finish off some smoked fish in the fridge before it goes bad.
Bad weather means Husband doesn't need to go to his client site for work. That doesn't directly save us money, since we get mileage and food reimbursed, but I suppose it saves the company money.

marcela

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12413 on: December 18, 2018, 08:48:36 AM »
- Dinner last night was freezer pot roast and leftover potatoes from Sunday night dinner. Husband has a bad habit of letting leftover food just sit in the fridge for ages so I'm glad I was able to rescue the potatoes and (slightly freezer burned) pot roast. I chucked it into the instant pot with some more broth and seasonings so it turned out super flavourful.
- White elephant party at work and I was able to put my gift together with random stuff we had around the house. Saving money and decluttering! Lunch will be provided for a $5 donation so I'm considering it a pretty cheap way to make connections with other departments since I usually turn down invites to go out to lunch.
- Found two bottles of red wine at work and got approval to take them home. This will supplement our wine at home for hosting the holiday.
- Sold 3 theater tickets from our subscription. We weren't going to be in town for the show and couldn't switch the date to one that worked. Got back what I paid for them and will save money by not driving to the city the theater is in, plus parking fees, plus usually going out to lunch or dinner in downtown. 

OmahaSteph

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12414 on: December 19, 2018, 12:38:50 PM »
Got my oil changed a couple months ago and you get a free car wash with it. I had the bike rack attached to the hitch at the time, so I asked if I could redeem it later. They said yes.

Fast forward several months and the receipt and voucher are wrinkled and battered at the bottom of my purse. In a "what-the-hell" moment, I pulled up and asked if they'd honor it. The lady said sure and handed me a new receipt with the order number. She directed me to the full-service car wash door. Confused, I pulled up and told the attendant I didn't need full service, just exterior. He says, no problem, I'll just credit this receipt so you get another exterior wash free.

SCORE!

Slow&Steady

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12415 on: December 19, 2018, 01:07:25 PM »
Eating an allergy friendly diet for my nursing daughter.  Saves money because no spur of the moment going out to eat options and also is much much cheaper than the allergy friendly formulas.

I went down to the work cafeteria (good food for a discounted/company subsided price) for lunch today, unfortunately I ran out of salad dressing that is allergy friendly and they didn't have any non-salad allergy friendly options for me today.  I ate the last can of "just in case" soup I had at my desk so no money on lunch but I am not sure it was enough to hold me over until I get home (this nursing mama needs lots of calories).

Started carpooling on Monday with a co-worker, which cuts my commute cost in half every other week!

Not a small thing but we installed an outdoor wood burning furnance/boiler at the house a couple weeks ago that is tied into our HVAC and our water heater! We live in the country and have plenty of wood to provide free fuel, just need to clean up our "forest".  I expect this will save us ~ $1k per year in energy cost but it will also provide exercise and allow us to do some much needed "forest" maintenance/clean up on the property. In the 4 winter months last year we averaged 154 kWh per day! Since installing this thing we are down to an average of 92 kWh per day and I am expecting that to continue to decrease as we have only had the water heater connected for a couple days.  Yes that is still a lot of energy, no we don't have gas heat as an option.

Had DH turn the chicken noodle soup from last week (that nobody liked) into chicken pot pie, last night.  It wasn't the most flavorful but it didn't end up in the trash!

Thinking about having him turn some taco soup/chili/whatever it was into burritos either tonight or tomorrow.

Brought different leftovers to work today.

We either always have leftover or never have leftover, kids are picky creatures that will eat everything one day and (seemingly) not enough to survive the next day.

Cancelled Kindle Unlimited and downloaded the Overdrive app that is needed to take advantage of e-books from our local library.

Convinced DH that getting firewood is a better workout than paying for a gym membership that he doesn't use.

Bought an Instant Pot (everyone seems to think these things save them a ton of money on food, hopefully this stays in the "save money" group and not the "another kitchen appliance that doesn't get used" group)

Bought LED bulbs, we have started to have more and more of our old CFL bulbs go out and we didn't have any spares.

Going to sign up for the Plan to Eat 30 day free trial to see if we can get our food cost under control.

MaybeBabyMustache

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12416 on: December 19, 2018, 07:10:29 PM »
-Adjusted work hours/APAC meetings to handle child care without cost (my nanny is out)
-Avoided optional white elephant at work. I'm not a total scrooge - I had meetings that conflicted
-Kids needed emergency $10 exchange items for school. Worked up two cute gift bags full of treats I'd bought & hidden away for ski snacks & other unusual pantry items. I needed to get a dollar value up at the grocery store, had a gift card, so it was free to me. And, more importantly, avoided a trip to the store.
-Used a Rite Aid reward for another gift, after my son unexpectedly received a very nice/expensive gift from a friend
-Continuing to scrounge the fridge/freezer for leftovers. Tonight two people will dine on leftover lasagna, and two will dine on freezer burritos + guac. Also, my husband brought home hand made chocolates that were a gift, so those will be dessert

Before we leave the house on Friday, we'll pack up all fruit/veggies that can survive a flight to Portland & try to repurpose them on our vacation. We've done this with good success on previous trips.

letsdoit

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12417 on: December 20, 2018, 11:11:38 AM »
I bought way fewer gifts this year. 
helped by a child rearing work load that makes it easier to no give a F what my depression-era minded family thinks about it

BTW , does instapot really save money  ? how?

4alpacas

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12418 on: December 20, 2018, 11:41:04 AM »
BTW , does instapot really save money  ? how?
For me, my Instant Pot is amazing.  I cook more on weeknights--fast, single pot, and can do other things while it's on. 
  • make all of my broth from scratch instead of buying it.  I use leftover bones and vegetable scraps.  I keep a bag in the freezer and toss things in it. 
  • Bulk cook grains
  • Cook chicken breasts from FROZEN in under 30 minutes

I know a lot of what I do with my Instant Pot could be accomplished with a slow cooker.  However, a slow cooker is slow.  And I have only ONCE managed to get a meal started in my slow cooker before work.  I am not great at meal planning, so YMMV. With my Instant Pot, I bulk cook during the week, which is huge for me. 

Poundwise

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12419 on: December 20, 2018, 09:30:05 PM »
Baked  bread instead of buying it for teacher gift baskets. But wow, that was a lot of work! I had to make 6 loaves for 6 teachers (team-taught classes) and thus my Kitchenaid couldn't handle doing it all at once.

Trifele

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12420 on: December 21, 2018, 03:43:16 AM »
Baked  bread instead of buying it for teacher gift baskets. But wow, that was a lot of work! I had to make 6 loaves for 6 teachers (team-taught classes) and thus my Kitchenaid couldn't handle doing it all at once.

A loaf of home-baked bread is about the loveliest gift I can think of, @Poundwise.  That was really nice of you.

JLee

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12421 on: December 21, 2018, 04:29:33 AM »
Worked from home this morning so I can go directly to the airport to catch a flight this afternoon, instead of having to take Uber/Lyft to work and then to the airport (or pay for airport parking for a week).

Dicey

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12422 on: December 21, 2018, 04:32:28 AM »
BTW , does instapot really save money  ? how?
For me, my Instant Pot is amazing.  I cook more on weeknights--fast, single pot, and can do other things while it's on. 
  • make all of my broth from scratch instead of buying it.  I use leftover bones and vegetable scraps.  I keep a bag in the freezer and toss things in it. 
  • Bulk cook grains
  • Cook chicken breasts from FROZEN in under 30 minutes

I know a lot of what I do with my Instant Pot could be accomplished with a slow cooker.  However, a slow cooker is slow.  And I have only ONCE managed to get a meal started in my slow cooker before work.  I am not great at meal planning, so YMMV. With my Instant Pot, I bulk cook during the week, which is huge for me.
- I bulk cook beef for tacos and freeze it. Having meat for a fast meal at the ready avoids spendier dinner solutions. Taco Tuesday is good any day of the week.
- Quick and easy way to cook dry beans, which are cheaper than canned. Bonus - less waste.
- Ditto for grains, esp. rice and quinoa. Buy in bulk (cheaper) and batch cook (faster). Win.
As letsdoit mentioned, it is *fast*, which helps get frozen-solid items to the table expediently.


Poundwise

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12423 on: December 21, 2018, 09:21:57 AM »
Baked  bread instead of buying it for teacher gift baskets. But wow, that was a lot of work! I had to make 6 loaves for 6 teachers (team-taught classes) and thus my Kitchenaid couldn't handle doing it all at once.

A loaf of home-baked bread is about the loveliest gift I can think of, @Poundwise.  That was really nice of you.

Thanks, @Trifele! Usually it's not such a big deal for me to make bread, but we had to produce gifts for many more teachers than usual this year. I'm praying that they came out all right... seemed to rise okay, right color on the outside, used instant read thermometer to check inside temp.  But there was no twin loaf for home consumption that I could cut into to check how the batch went.

35andFI

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12424 on: December 21, 2018, 10:05:33 AM »
Here are some of the small things that I do that save me money (note that I didn't say to save money):

-Meal-prep and bring lunch to work
-Bike to the gym and grocery store
-Take cold showers
-Keep my heat on low
-Work from home as much as possible (save commuting costs)
-Drink only water
-Do my own car maintenance
-Work towards minimalism (make money by selling and save money by not buying)
-Rarely buy clothes but when I do they are from thrift stores
-Get a yearly physical (Save $54/mo on employer sponsored health insurance)

Here are some of the things that I don't do that save me money:

-Go out to eat (will go occasionally if I am invited to go with friends or family)
-Drink alcohol
-Drink coffee (even though I can get it for free at work)
-Buy anything more than what I went to the store for
-Keep up with the newest tech/gadgets
-Date (much)

Edit: Whoops. I missed the TODAY part. Most still apply
« Last Edit: December 21, 2018, 10:07:05 AM by 35andFI »

letsdoit

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12425 on: December 21, 2018, 02:37:35 PM »
BTW , does instapot really save money  ? how?
For me, my Instant Pot is amazing.  I cook more on weeknights--fast, single pot, and can do other things while it's on. 
  • make all of my broth from scratch instead of buying it.  I use leftover bones and vegetable scraps.  I keep a bag in the freezer and toss things in it. 
  • Bulk cook grains
  • Cook chicken breasts from FROZEN in under 30 minutes

I know a lot of what I do with my Instant Pot could be accomplished with a slow cooker.  However, a slow cooker is slow.  And I have only ONCE managed to get a meal started in my slow cooker before work.  I am not great at meal planning, so YMMV. With my Instant Pot, I bulk cook during the week, which is huge for me.
- I bulk cook beef for tacos and freeze it. Having meat for a fast meal at the ready avoids spendier dinner solutions. Taco Tuesday is good any day of the week.
- Quick and easy way to cook dry beans, which are cheaper than canned. Bonus - less waste.
- Ditto for grains, esp. rice and quinoa. Buy in bulk (cheaper) and batch cook (faster). Win.
As letsdoit mentioned, it is *fast*, which helps get frozen-solid items to the table expediently.

we have gas in our building, the cost is wrapped in the condo fee.
electricity is expensive.  i have given away a nice slow cooker in the past for that reason
it sounds like instapot things like broth could be done on gas stove in a regular pot. if  i bought a pressure cooker for stove top that would make it cook faster.
is there something that instapot could offer me in that situation? 


Rural

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12426 on: December 21, 2018, 05:31:59 PM »
BTW , does instapot really save money  ? how?
For me, my Instant Pot is amazing.  I cook more on weeknights--fast, single pot, and can do other things while it's on. 
  • make all of my broth from scratch instead of buying it.  I use leftover bones and vegetable scraps.  I keep a bag in the freezer and toss things in it. 
  • Bulk cook grains
  • Cook chicken breasts from FROZEN in under 30 minutes
I know a lot of what I do with my Instant Pot could be accomplished with a slow cooker.  However, a slow cooker is slow.  And I have only ONCE managed to get a meal started in my slow cooker before work.  I am not great at meal planning, so YMMV. With my Instant Pot, I bulk cook during the week, which is huge for me.
- I bulk cook beef for tacos and freeze it. Having meat for a fast meal at the ready avoids spendier dinner solutions. Taco Tuesday is good any day of the week.
- Quick and easy way to cook dry beans, which are cheaper than canned. Bonus - less waste.
- Ditto for grains, esp. rice and quinoa. Buy in bulk (cheaper) and batch cook (faster). Win.
As letsdoit mentioned, it is *fast*, which helps get frozen-solid items to the table expediently.

we have gas in our building, the cost is wrapped in the condo fee.
electricity is expensive.  i have given away a nice slow cooker in the past for that reason
it sounds like instapot things like broth could be done on gas stove in a regular pot. if  i bought a pressure cooker for stove top that would make it cook faster.
is there something that instapot could offer me in that situation?


Having cooked with both a stovetop pressure cooker and an instantpot, I'll tell you the instantpot is much simpler and is the only one of the two I'd leave even to go into another room to do something.

Roadrunner53

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12427 on: December 22, 2018, 04:30:26 AM »
BTW , does instapot really save money  ? how?
For me, my Instant Pot is amazing.  I cook more on weeknights--fast, single pot, and can do other things while it's on. 
  • make all of my broth from scratch instead of buying it.  I use leftover bones and vegetable scraps.  I keep a bag in the freezer and toss things in it. 
  • Bulk cook grains
  • Cook chicken breasts from FROZEN in under 30 minutes
I know a lot of what I do with my Instant Pot could be accomplished with a slow cooker.  However, a slow cooker is slow.  And I have only ONCE managed to get a meal started in my slow cooker before work.  I am not great at meal planning, so YMMV. With my Instant Pot, I bulk cook during the week, which is huge for me.
- I bulk cook beef for tacos and freeze it. Having meat for a fast meal at the ready avoids spendier dinner solutions. Taco Tuesday is good any day of the week.
- Quick and easy way to cook dry beans, which are cheaper than canned. Bonus - less waste.
- Ditto for grains, esp. rice and quinoa. Buy in bulk (cheaper) and batch cook (faster). Win.
As letsdoit mentioned, it is *fast*, which helps get frozen-solid items to the table expediently.

we have gas in our building, the cost is wrapped in the condo fee.
electricity is expensive.  i have given away a nice slow cooker in the past for that reason
it sounds like instapot things like broth could be done on gas stove in a regular pot. if  i bought a pressure cooker for stove top that would make it cook faster.
is there something that instapot could offer me in that situation?


Having cooked with both a stovetop pressure cooker and an instantpot, I'll tell you the instantpot is much simpler and is the only one of the two I'd leave even to go into another room to do something.


I have an old fashion pressure cooker I have not used in a long time but I did love it and never had an issue with it. I also have an Instant Pot and my favorite thing to make in it is yogurt. I really get annoyed when I cook with the Instant Pot bringing the pot up to pressure. It seems to take forever, like 35 minutes)  before it actually starts cooking. I need to use this pot more often and try new things.

Rural

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12428 on: December 22, 2018, 06:54:06 AM »
BTW , does instapot really save money  ? how?
For me, my Instant Pot is amazing.  I cook more on weeknights--fast, single pot, and can do other things while it's on. 
  • make all of my broth from scratch instead of buying it.  I use leftover bones and vegetable scraps.  I keep a bag in the freezer and toss things in it. 
  • Bulk cook grains
  • Cook chicken breasts from FROZEN in under 30 minutes
I know a lot of what I do with my Instant Pot could be accomplished with a slow cooker.  However, a slow cooker is slow.  And I have only ONCE managed to get a meal started in my slow cooker before work.  I am not great at meal planning, so YMMV. With my Instant Pot, I bulk cook during the week, which is huge for me.
- I bulk cook beef for tacos and freeze it. Having meat for a fast meal at the ready avoids spendier dinner solutions. Taco Tuesday is good any day of the week.
- Quick and easy way to cook dry beans, which are cheaper than canned. Bonus - less waste.
- Ditto for grains, esp. rice and quinoa. Buy in bulk (cheaper) and batch cook (faster). Win.
As letsdoit mentioned, it is *fast*, which helps get frozen-solid items to the table expediently.

we have gas in our building, the cost is wrapped in the condo fee.
electricity is expensive.  i have given away a nice slow cooker in the past for that reason
it sounds like instapot things like broth could be done on gas stove in a regular pot. if  i bought a pressure cooker for stove top that would make it cook faster.
is there something that instapot could offer me in that situation?


Having cooked with both a stovetop pressure cooker and an instantpot, I'll tell you the instantpot is much simpler and is the only one of the two I'd leave even to go into another room to do something.


I have an old fashion pressure cooker I have not used in a long time but I did love it and never had an issue with it. I also have an Instant Pot and my favorite thing to make in it is yogurt. I really get annoyed when I cook with the Instant Pot bringing the pot up to pressure. It seems to take forever, like 35 minutes)  before it actually starts cooking. I need to use this pot more often and try new things.
I've never had an issue with my pressure cooker (or my pressure canner) either; they just aren't designed to be left unattended.


I'd be very unhappy with 35 minutes to come to pressure, too. My InstantPot takes longer than the manual canner, but it's more like 15 minutes vs 5-10 with the stovetop. Are you sure your ring is clean? Enough liquid? If you aren't used to cooking large amounts of food, the 6-quart pot is pretty big. My mother recently got one of the mini pots and loves it for cooking for two.

Roadrunner53

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12429 on: December 22, 2018, 07:31:14 AM »
BTW , does instapot really save money  ? how?
For me, my Instant Pot is amazing.  I cook more on weeknights--fast, single pot, and can do other things while it's on. 
  • make all of my broth from scratch instead of buying it.  I use leftover bones and vegetable scraps.  I keep a bag in the freezer and toss things in it. 
  • Bulk cook grains
  • Cook chicken breasts from FROZEN in under 30 minutes
I know a lot of what I do with my Instant Pot could be accomplished with a slow cooker.  However, a slow cooker is slow.  And I have only ONCE managed to get a meal started in my slow cooker before work.  I am not great at meal planning, so YMMV. With my Instant Pot, I bulk cook during the week, which is huge for me.
- I bulk cook beef for tacos and freeze it. Having meat for a fast meal at the ready avoids spendier dinner solutions. Taco Tuesday is good any day of the week.
- Quick and easy way to cook dry beans, which are cheaper than canned. Bonus - less waste.
- Ditto for grains, esp. rice and quinoa. Buy in bulk (cheaper) and batch cook (faster). Win.
As letsdoit mentioned, it is *fast*, which helps get frozen-solid items to the table expediently.

we have gas in our building, the cost is wrapped in the condo fee.
electricity is expensive.  i have given away a nice slow cooker in the past for that reason
it sounds like instapot things like broth could be done on gas stove in a regular pot. if  i bought a pressure cooker for stove top that would make it cook faster.
is there something that instapot could offer me in that situation?


Having cooked with both a stovetop pressure cooker and an instantpot, I'll tell you the instantpot is much simpler and is the only one of the two I'd leave even to go into another room to do something.


I have an old fashion pressure cooker I have not used in a long time but I did love it and never had an issue with it. I also have an Instant Pot and my favorite thing to make in it is yogurt. I really get annoyed when I cook with the Instant Pot bringing the pot up to pressure. It seems to take forever, like 35 minutes)  before it actually starts cooking. I need to use this pot more often and try new things.
I've never had an issue with my pressure cooker (or my pressure canner) either; they just aren't designed to be left unattended.


I'd be very unhappy with 35 minutes to come to pressure, too. My InstantPot takes longer than the manual canner, but it's more like 15 minutes vs 5-10 with the stovetop. Are you sure your ring is clean? Enough liquid? If you aren't used to cooking large amounts of food, the 6-quart pot is pretty big. My mother recently got one of the mini pots and loves it for cooking for two.

I believe my Instant pot is 8 quart and yes, I cook large quantities so we always have leftovers. Cook once, eat twice or more. Maybe due to the size is why it takes so long to heat up. Everything is clean in it and adequate water. I started to use the sauté button to heat it up quicker then program it. Yes, my stovetop model only takes about 10 minutes to get the jiggler to maintain a steady, even jiggle.

Rural

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12430 on: December 22, 2018, 08:34:39 AM »
BTW , does instapot really save money  ? how?
For me, my Instant Pot is amazing.  I cook more on weeknights--fast, single pot, and can do other things while it's on. 
  • make all of my broth from scratch instead of buying it.  I use leftover bones and vegetable scraps.  I keep a bag in the freezer and toss things in it. 
  • Bulk cook grains
  • Cook chicken breasts from FROZEN in under 30 minutes
I know a lot of what I do with my Instant Pot could be accomplished with a slow cooker.  However, a slow cooker is slow.  And I have only ONCE managed to get a meal started in my slow cooker before work.  I am not great at meal planning, so YMMV. With my Instant Pot, I bulk cook during the week, which is huge for me.
- I bulk cook beef for tacos and freeze it. Having meat for a fast meal at the ready avoids spendier dinner solutions. Taco Tuesday is good any day of the week.
- Quick and easy way to cook dry beans, which are cheaper than canned. Bonus - less waste.
- Ditto for grains, esp. rice and quinoa. Buy in bulk (cheaper) and batch cook (faster). Win.
As letsdoit mentioned, it is *fast*, which helps get frozen-solid items to the table expediently.

we have gas in our building, the cost is wrapped in the condo fee.
electricity is expensive.  i have given away a nice slow cooker in the past for that reason
it sounds like instapot things like broth could be done on gas stove in a regular pot. if  i bought a pressure cooker for stove top that would make it cook faster.
is there something that instapot could offer me in that situation?


Having cooked with both a stovetop pressure cooker and an instantpot, I'll tell you the instantpot is much simpler and is the only one of the two I'd leave even to go into another room to do something.


I have an old fashion pressure cooker I have not used in a long time but I did love it and never had an issue with it. I also have an Instant Pot and my favorite thing to make in it is yogurt. I really get annoyed when I cook with the Instant Pot bringing the pot up to pressure. It seems to take forever, like 35 minutes)  before it actually starts cooking. I need to use this pot more often and try new things.
I've never had an issue with my pressure cooker (or my pressure canner) either; they just aren't designed to be left unattended.


I'd be very unhappy with 35 minutes to come to pressure, too. My InstantPot takes longer than the manual canner, but it's more like 15 minutes vs 5-10 with the stovetop. Are you sure your ring is clean? Enough liquid? If you aren't used to cooking large amounts of food, the 6-quart pot is pretty big. My mother recently got one of the mini pots and loves it for cooking for two.

I believe my Instant pot is 8 quart and yes, I cook large quantities so we always have leftovers. Cook once, eat twice or more. Maybe due to the size is why it takes so long to heat up. Everything is clean in it and adequate water. I started to use the sauté button to heat it up quicker then program it. Yes, my stovetop model only takes about 10 minutes to get the jiggler to maintain a steady, even jiggle.


I'm pretty sure what I have is a 6-qt Duo (it comes in 3, 6, and 8), but still it seems to me that 35 mins. is excessive. I cook very much the way you do, large batches at a time. I have found that if I push down on the lid after locking it on, it does come to pressure faster - I had some sort of leak before, I suppose, and seating the ring helps. Using the saute setting to heat faster is clever, but I guess it also depends on what you have in there; some things might scorch.

4alpacas

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12431 on: December 22, 2018, 01:41:49 PM »
My Instant Pot comes to pressure in under 10 minutes.  I also cook a lot of food at once (enough chicken for a week and some to freeze).

BTW , does instapot really save money  ? how?
For me, my Instant Pot is amazing.  I cook more on weeknights--fast, single pot, and can do other things while it's on. 
  • make all of my broth from scratch instead of buying it.  I use leftover bones and vegetable scraps.  I keep a bag in the freezer and toss things in it. 
  • Bulk cook grains
  • Cook chicken breasts from FROZEN in under 30 minutes

I know a lot of what I do with my Instant Pot could be accomplished with a slow cooker.  However, a slow cooker is slow.  And I have only ONCE managed to get a meal started in my slow cooker before work.  I am not great at meal planning, so YMMV. With my Instant Pot, I bulk cook during the week, which is huge for me.
- I bulk cook beef for tacos and freeze it. Having meat for a fast meal at the ready avoids spendier dinner solutions. Taco Tuesday is good any day of the week.
- Quick and easy way to cook dry beans, which are cheaper than canned. Bonus - less waste.
- Ditto for grains, esp. rice and quinoa. Buy in bulk (cheaper) and batch cook (faster). Win.
As letsdoit mentioned, it is *fast*, which helps get frozen-solid items to the table expediently.
we have gas in our building, the cost is wrapped in the condo fee.
electricity is expensive.  i have given away a nice slow cooker in the past for that reason
it sounds like instapot things like broth could be done on gas stove in a regular pot. if  i bought a pressure cooker for stove top that would make it cook faster.
is there something that instapot could offer me in that situation? 
Yes, the Instant Pot does things quicker and can be left unattended.  I don't like cooking, so the Instant Pot is a fast way to homecooked meals with as little time as possible in the kitchen. 

If you're fine waiting for food to cook and don't mind staying in your kitchen, then an Instant Pot probably wouldn't be a good fit.  I know a lot of people who bought Instant Pots because they were trendy and never used them.  I bought mine originally to replace a broken rice cooker.  I was surprised how much I used it.  I don't think an Instant Pot is for everyone though.  It is another kitchen appliance, and you have to be honest with yourself about how much you'll use it. I use my Instant Pot 3-4 times/week.  I made all of our broth, most of the soup, all of the grains, and 75% of the protein we eat. 

Dicey

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12432 on: December 22, 2018, 10:29:22 PM »
Ha! Cook once, eat twice indeed! Tonight was leftover rice and chicken tikka masala courtesy of the IP. Boom!

La Bibliotecaria Feroz

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12433 on: December 23, 2018, 01:24:59 PM »
My Instant Pot saves $$ on yogurt and saves dishes, which I guess saves a minimal amount?

See, making yogurt in the IP is MUCH easier than making it via other methods IME, and so I am much more consistent about doing it vs buying. And we eat a lot of yogurt at my house.

And I like that if I want to slow-cook something but brown the onions or whatever first, I can do this right in the IP instead of getting a skillet dirty as well as the slow cooker. (Yes, I still own an oval Crock Pot. An IP CAN slow cook but basically only on low--its highest setting still takes all damn day and sometimes I want my food cooked in more like half a day.)

Roadrunner53

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12434 on: December 23, 2018, 01:43:24 PM »
Made boiled eggs in my Instant pot for the first time. I have an 8 quart IP and it took probably 20 minutes to come to pressure, 5 minutes to cook and 5 minutes natural release then into ice bath. The IP ran out of water during cooking. I put in 1 1/2 cups water as suggested. However, next time I will put in much more water! Eggs came out PERFECT and easy to peel! So I will definitely use IP again to cook boiled eggs.

I have also made yogurt in it and it comes out perfect too!

Now I need some more IP adventures. Have not experimented with it much. Anyone have some one pot meals you like to cook in the IP? Recipes?

4alpacas

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12435 on: December 23, 2018, 03:05:39 PM »
Made boiled eggs in my Instant pot for the first time. I have an 8 quart IP and it took probably 20 minutes to come to pressure, 5 minutes to cook and 5 minutes natural release then into ice bath. The IP ran out of water during cooking. I put in 1 1/2 cups water as suggested. However, next time I will put in much more water! Eggs came out PERFECT and easy to peel! So I will definitely use IP again to cook boiled eggs.
Do you set the eggs on the bottom or do you use the little raised tray?

My ultimate favorite is salsa chicken.  I make it at least once a month.  I make A LOT and use it on everything--tacos, eggs, sandwiches, and salads.

Roadrunner53

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12436 on: December 23, 2018, 03:23:13 PM »
Made boiled eggs in my Instant pot for the first time. I have an 8 quart IP and it took probably 20 minutes to come to pressure, 5 minutes to cook and 5 minutes natural release then into ice bath. The IP ran out of water during cooking. I put in 1 1/2 cups water as suggested. However, next time I will put in much more water! Eggs came out PERFECT and easy to peel! So I will definitely use IP again to cook boiled eggs.
Do you set the eggs on the bottom or do you use the little raised tray?

My ultimate favorite is salsa chicken.  I make it at least once a month.  I make A LOT and use it on everything--tacos, eggs, sandwiches, and salads.

I used the little rack that came with it with the handles. I cooked 10 eggs. Quite impressed with the perfection of the cook. But a little freaked when I saw no water in it when I opened it up. I will definitely put in maybe 3 cups next time...or more! I used the 5, 5, 5 method.  5 minute cook, five minutes natural release and 5 minute ice bath which was much longer than 5 minutes.

Please tell me more about salsa chicken and how to cook it! How much chicken do you use and salsa?

I have a pot roast in the freezer I plan to cook in it soon. I used to cook PR in my old fashion pressure cooker and it was always amazing. I started using the crock pot while working and it would be done when I came home. I am no longer working so doesn't really matter if I use crock pot or IP now.

4alpacas

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12437 on: December 23, 2018, 03:32:50 PM »
This is the original recipe I used for salsa chicken. I usually cook 3-4 pounds of chicken breasts from the freezer with 25-28 mins of cook time (depending if the chicken is stuck together) with ~1.5-2 cups of salsa and 2 tsp cumin.  If I don't have salsa, I'll use a can of diced tomatoes with green chilies, but I have to use a lot more seasonings (cumin, oregano, pepper, salt, etc.).

I also cook chicken breasts this way and sub out the salsa for chicken broth or any other liquid (did BBQ sauce once).  I also do variations of the slow cooker taco chicken bowl recipe from Budget Bytes.

I'm not great in the kitchen, so anything fast and hands off is my style. ;)

Dollar Slice

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12438 on: December 23, 2018, 03:48:09 PM »
Made boiled eggs in my Instant pot for the first time. I have an 8 quart IP and it took probably 20 minutes to come to pressure, 5 minutes to cook and 5 minutes natural release then into ice bath. The IP ran out of water during cooking.

Just FYI, you might want to check your rubber gasket thing in the lid next time... This sounds to me like it didn't seal right. It should have come to pressure faster and not lost the liquid. This happened to me at first, too - now I make sure the rubber ring is seated on the metal ring every time, and no more issues. I think when you take the lid on and off the rubber can be pulled out of place sometimes.

OmahaSteph

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12439 on: December 24, 2018, 12:13:53 PM »
One more advantage of cooking with an IP is not heating up the entire house (in warm weather). Uses much less electricity than the stove/oven.

Pinterest has a treasure trove of IP recipes, but like most things, some are better than others.

SquirrelStache

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12440 on: December 24, 2018, 12:57:55 PM »
Made boiled eggs in my Instant pot for the first time. I have an 8 quart IP and it took probably 20 minutes to come to pressure, 5 minutes to cook and 5 minutes natural release then into ice bath. The IP ran out of water during cooking.

Just FYI, you might want to check your rubber gasket thing in the lid next time... This sounds to me like it didn't seal right. It should have come to pressure faster and not lost the liquid. This happened to me at first, too - now I make sure the rubber ring is seated on the metal ring every time, and no more issues. I think when you take the lid on and off the rubber can be pulled out of place sometimes.

^^This. I've had this happen several times. Now, before I put the lid on, I push the ring down all the way around the lid (it pops up on the opposite side as you push, so be careful of that). Not had a problem with the pressure since I started doing that.

jengod

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12441 on: December 27, 2018, 09:13:55 PM »
Saved $22 on parking fees by riding my bike 16 miles (25 km) roundtrip to a doctor's appointment.

OmahaSteph

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12442 on: December 28, 2018, 08:44:38 PM »
1. Pooled Christmas cash gifts so hubby could get his bike tuned up before he starts cycle commuting full time again. (Spent money to save?)

2. Made a number of Uber Eats deliveries this evening.

3. Turned leftover ham into ham salad.

4. Confirmed that both our cell phones are now unlocked. Switching from AT&T to Consumer Wireless tomorrow.

5. This was passive, but we were the recipients of a random act of kindness today (the first!). All four of us went into a new-to-us butcher shop. Between my cute kids and Handsome wearing his Army veteran hat, someone picked up a package of maple sugar jerky (made by the butcher, not mass-produced stuff) and told them to give it to us when we checked out. I think the package said it was worth $6. How sweet! And the kids loved it.

6. Bought bubble mailers for my soon-to-open eBay side hustle. Again, spending money to make money.

FrugalAussie

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12443 on: December 29, 2018, 02:25:17 AM »
At last, I'm back!  It's been a very busy year, culminating in a frugal wedding in November and a trip overseas.

I've loved reading the frugal Christmas stories.  We received a gift of $100 cash and can't think what we need to buy with it.

But today, I've been gardening.  Repotted a plant from the garden rather than go down to the garden center to buy one as a replacement. I'm also processing 10kg of plums, purchased for a total of $3.99. I stewed some, made some plum almond meal muffins from a Frankensteined recipe, gave some away, ate some and still have about 6 kg left.  Next, I'm going to try baking them, it's been done before according to the internet.

And a bigger, longterm thing. I've returned to my vegetarian + fish diet, a healthy and frugal choice for me.

Trifele

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12444 on: December 29, 2018, 04:08:40 AM »
I'm planning our spring and summer vacations for this coming year, and it's all tent camping.  We'll be checking out a bunch of national and state parks we've never been to.  Just made the reservations, and I can't wait!

Dicey

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12445 on: December 29, 2018, 08:00:19 AM »
Traveling to our rentals. Had an unused free hotel night left that's expiring in a few days. The corporate website said no Rewards Nights were available, though the hotel still had rooms. I called the hotel directly and got the reservation approved. Free sleep, free breakfast, then back on the road this morning. Of course, I packed a cooler full of road snacks and we gassed up at Costco along the way.

OmahaSteph

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12446 on: December 29, 2018, 04:05:32 PM »
Got an email that I had bonus credits at the garden center/greenhouse where I got all my supplies this summer, and they had to be used TODAY or they would expire. I expected to have maybe $10 in credits, but actually had $20. And everything was 50% off. Unfortunately, they didn't have seed packets out, but they did have live plants.

Picked up all of the below for $4.27 cents:

-oregano plant
-rosemary plant
-thyme plant
-lavender (daughter's request)
-boot toppers (knitted half-socks)
-and a mango wood eyeglasses holder for Handsome's birthday. We keep threatening to get him a granny chain because he's ALWAYS losing his readers and there are pairs ALL OVER the house.
-they gave us a free poinsettia

MaybeBabyMustache

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12447 on: December 29, 2018, 07:29:40 PM »
@OmahaSteph - loved the random act of kindness!

We ate leftovers for all meals, and sent a bunch of food we won't finish with my parents & sister. (Everyone contributed food.) It was a very frugal post-holiday festivity from the food perspective. However, we bought plenty of alcohol, which wasn't frugal.

marcela

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12448 on: December 30, 2018, 08:38:22 AM »
- finally made the move to switch internet providers. We are set up for att fiber at the new house and its supposedly $35 less a month for the same speed. The guy at the store tried to pressure me into adding a TV package so I would get the $100 installation fee waived, but then I saw that doing it online would waive the fee anyway.  No fee and got to watch the pushy sales guys face fall when I told i was just going to do it online. Next time don't mock people when they say they don't want tv.
- ordered braces through smiledirect club. Got the 3d scan of my teeth for free when I was in major city last month along with a $25 amazon gift card, whitening kit and lip balm. Waited a few weeks for promos and scored $150 off and a free retainer. Straighter teeth for $1700 here I come!
- returned amazon gifts that didn't work out for me and will get $80 credit.
- decided against getting my hair coloured at the salon. Will pick up some box kit when its on sale again. $85 saved.

Rural

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #12449 on: December 30, 2018, 01:41:51 PM »
Neither of us went down off the mountain today. Walked in the woods with the dog for entertainment and may watch movies from the library tonight if we get ambitious.