Author Topic: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?  (Read 2006517 times)

annaraven

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #250 on: December 18, 2013, 05:22:09 PM »
Ate lunch and made an espresso at home before I went out, so I wasn't even tempted. And, the bread is in the oven for tonight.

fmzip

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #251 on: December 18, 2013, 06:21:34 PM »

I spent an hour shovelling snow, instead of going to my usual fitness class. I didn't do it to save money; I did it because I really only had time to do one or the other, and the shovelling had to be done.

So I saved the $6.50 drop-in fee for the fitness class. But, do you know what's even cooler than that? I had a much better-than-usual attitude toward shovelling! I banished my complainypants wah-wah about having to do it, and instead appreciated every minute of the awesome upper-body workout I was getting. What a great Jedi mind trick to pull on myself. The mustachian way is awesome.


Good for you! I myself went the complainypants route on the snow shoveling to motivate myself even more for FIRE to get the hell out of New England as soon as freakin' possible :)
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turboseize

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #252 on: December 19, 2013, 05:28:13 AM »
[...] (Technically, it was that the "mixture adaptation" was "lean" which wouldn't really have been a problem anyway, as running "rich" is what you really want to avoid.) 

Erm.... no.

Running lean can kill an engine within a few minutes, while running rich will "only" mean higher fuel consumption and increased wear. (The latter only, if you're really overdoing it). Regarding emissions, both is bad, with running lean increasing NOx and running rich increasing unburned hydrocarbons.
Running lean makes combustion temperatures rise, increasing efficiency but putting great stress on exhaust valves and pistons. Running rich reduces efficency, but lowers temperatures (protecting the engine). That is why most cars enrich mixture under full load.
Also, running slightly rich will improve throttle response, eliminitating any delay in providing the extra fuel needed as it is already there. (That is where a part of the temperament older Alfas are renowned for comes from).

I would definitely investigate what caused that check engine light. Perhaps it was just the extreme cold (meaning too much fuel condeses in the intake manifold and not reaches combustion, as well as more oxygen in the colder air), or you have a just so slight air leak that is just a tad below the fault code threshold and only combined with the cold air crossed the threshold.
In any case, a check engine light means that for a certain time, your engine was running outside of it's specifications. You would want to keep an eye on it.If check engine light stays out, fine. If not, do find the fault. 

Will

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #253 on: December 19, 2013, 07:55:32 AM »
[...] (Technically, it was that the "mixture adaptation" was "lean" which wouldn't really have been a problem anyway, as running "rich" is what you really want to avoid.) 

Erm.... no.

Running lean can kill an engine within a few minutes, while running rich will "only" mean higher fuel consumption and increased wear. (The latter only, if you're really overdoing it). Regarding emissions, both is bad, with running lean increasing NOx and running rich increasing unburned hydrocarbons.
Running lean makes combustion temperatures rise, increasing efficiency but putting great stress on exhaust valves and pistons. Running rich reduces efficency, but lowers temperatures (protecting the engine). That is why most cars enrich mixture under full load.
Also, running slightly rich will improve throttle response, eliminitating any delay in providing the extra fuel needed as it is already there. (That is where a part of the temperament older Alfas are renowned for comes from).

I would definitely investigate what caused that check engine light. Perhaps it was just the extreme cold (meaning too much fuel condeses in the intake manifold and not reaches combustion, as well as more oxygen in the colder air), or you have a just so slight air leak that is just a tad below the fault code threshold and only combined with the cold air crossed the threshold.
In any case, a check engine light means that for a certain time, your engine was running outside of it's specifications. You would want to keep an eye on it.If check engine light stays out, fine. If not, do find the fault.

That certainly does sound more serious than what they implied!  Maybe I misquoted or misheard them. Maybe they said running rich would've been a bigger problem?  Even so... I'm just glad that things seem to be okay and that the light is staying off.
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ace1224

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #254 on: December 19, 2013, 08:19:09 AM »
got suckered into a second secret santa at work, and gave them a starbucks giftcard that i got from swagbucks =)

ichangedmyname

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #255 on: December 19, 2013, 10:14:13 AM »
Comparing different store prices for Christmas dinner fixin's Krogers will win, I think except for ham at Albertson's 1.59/lb
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annaraven

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #256 on: December 19, 2013, 12:01:53 PM »
Just turned down the hours on the pool pump (yes, we have a pool. I had no idea what a money sink it would be when we bought the house) to winter hours to save electricity.

econberkeley

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #257 on: December 19, 2013, 12:18:56 PM »
I applied for BOA better balance rewards card few months ago.  I got my first quarterly $25 credit. I am only charging my $14.99 monthly internet bill to that card. BOA credit is paying most of my internet bill. On top of that, using this card, I have free access to the zoo and several museums every month.  Isn't it sweet?

Richard3

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #258 on: December 19, 2013, 04:51:53 PM »
I parked on the road near the airport (small town) to avoid paying $7 a day in parking fees for the 17 days I am away. That's me covered for this thread until early next year right? :)

annaraven

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #259 on: December 19, 2013, 05:16:07 PM »
I parked on the road near the airport (small town) to avoid paying $7 a day in parking fees for the 17 days I am away. That's me covered for this thread until early next year right? :)

As long as your town doesn't tow for "abandoned vehicle" after 72 hours like ours does.

Accidental Miser

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #260 on: December 19, 2013, 05:18:31 PM »
Did all Christmas shopping for children at Amazon.  No shipping, no driving, no tax, no impulse buying.  Spent $225 in total for three sons.  Yay!

Thinking of getting a Fidelity Amex card.

Dulcimina

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #261 on: December 20, 2013, 05:43:20 PM »
I canceled my EZPass online.  It has a fee of $1.50 per month and I haven't had a car since August.  The online part is important too.  I was going to rent a Zipcar to drive to the MVA and drop it off in person.  I walked to work instead of taking the bus.

shamelessHedon

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #262 on: December 20, 2013, 05:49:42 PM »
Really wanted pizza today. Had a can of soup instead.

nikki

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #263 on: December 20, 2013, 06:18:20 PM »
Really wanted pizza today. Had a can of soup instead.

I failed this one last night :-(

I made a meal that totally wasn't going to get eaten, despite my best attempts. I hate rice noodles!!! Rather than cooking and cleaning up *again*, I ordered pizza. Doh!

Christmas pizza?

I'm saving money today, tomorrow, and the next two weekends because my language exchange has been cancelled: no subway fare.

Russ

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #264 on: December 20, 2013, 06:23:35 PM »
you guys know you can make your own pizza, right?

http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/forum/ask-a-mustachian/looking-for-homemade-pizza-recipes/

I'm eating DIY pizza right now, so much better than any pizza I could buy around here

shamelessHedon

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #265 on: December 20, 2013, 06:26:21 PM »
Because I am gluten free making pizza at home is a little more complex.  :(

nikki

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #266 on: December 20, 2013, 06:36:44 PM »
you guys know you can make your own pizza, right?

http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/forum/ask-a-mustachian/looking-for-homemade-pizza-recipes/

I'm eating DIY pizza right now, so much better than any pizza I could buy around here

I do not have an oven, so actually I can't.

Russ

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #267 on: December 20, 2013, 07:15:54 PM »
ha alright then! facepunches retracted, enjoy your pizza and soup

Rural

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #268 on: December 20, 2013, 07:22:22 PM »
Replaced the thermostat in the Jeep. Currently letting RTV dry for 24 hours,then we'll see if the thermostat was the problem ( by far the cheapest fix, so worth a try). My husband put more siding on the house.

Wrapped presents in plain brown paper decorated with cheap red yarn and pine cones and branches from our property. Lovely and nearly free.

Ate leftovers from my husband's office party for supper.

ShortInSeattle

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #269 on: December 20, 2013, 07:33:42 PM »
Wrapped gifts in comic book pages. Used comics were 25 cents each. A buck for plenty of gift wrap, and it's nice and geeky too. :)

Bruised_Pepper

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #270 on: December 20, 2013, 07:45:58 PM »
Ate leftovers from my husband's office party for supper.

Yep.  Went to the office party, ate enough food to not need to cook dinner. 

Also, used a gift card to shop online, but chose the free in-store pickup option over shipping.  Despite the fact that the trip is just long enough to be annoying. 

nikki

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #271 on: December 20, 2013, 09:51:32 PM »
ha alright then! facepunches retracted, enjoy your pizza and soup

Oh--I wasn't suggesting I don't deserve a facepunch ;-)   Just admitting that I can't make pizza at home. When I had an oven, making pizza was a pretty regular thing. I might buy an electric convection oven/toaster oven thingy after I move to reintroduce homemade pizzas, breads, roasted veggies, and baked goods, assuming I have space in my apartment. Unfortunately, I haven't found one used yet! I'll continue looking.

But usually I'm fairly okay at resisting temptation. Last night I *almost* made scrambled eggs with spinach thrown in instead of ordering pizza, but because I had already planned on having pizza for Christmas Eve (don't judge me! single and alone on Christmas Eve--I do what I want), I justified the purchase. I also want to drink the Starbucks Christmas Cookie drink :S

This post is the exact opposite of what this thread is for.

kaetana

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #272 on: December 21, 2013, 12:42:50 AM »
Does it count if I spent money upfront in the hopes of saving more later? I bought a bike!!!!

It was an un-Mustachian $600. I took MMM at his word when he said in the blog that it's okay to buy a bike brand new. I intend to use the bike for years to come. I never really rode bikes when I was a kid, so today I mostly spent just trying to get comfortable with it and relearning how to ride. When I get better, I intend to bike to the train station every day (7km one way) and use it to get to the grocery store and random errands as well. It should pay itself off then, right?.... Right?

stripey

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #273 on: December 21, 2013, 02:55:53 AM »
Does it count if I spent money upfront in the hopes of saving more later? I bought a bike!!!!

It was an un-Mustachian $600. I took MMM at his word when he said in the blog that it's okay to buy a bike brand new. I intend to use the bike for years to come. I never really rode bikes when I was a kid, so today I mostly spent just trying to get comfortable with it and relearning how to ride. When I get better, I intend to bike to the train station every day (7km one way) and use it to get to the grocery store and random errands as well. It should pay itself off then, right?.... Right?

Hooray for bikes!!

Bo be honest I think it's better to purchase a slightly better-than-bargain-basement bike- it'll be more fun to ride and $600 in Aus is about right at the moment I think. You'll make the money back in no time:

- Let's say for argument's sake that total cost of driving (incl fuel) comes to $0.40-$0.50/km (a little bit above what the ATO will allow deductions but not an unreasonable estimate)
- 7km one way = 14km return = $7.00 savings per day you commute.
- So $600/7 = 86 return trips to break even. Basically in 17 weeks (assuming 5 commuting trips/week) you'll have broken even with the purchase, and you'll be getting more exercise to boot! Hooray!
- If you're going to leave it at the train station be sure to get a sturdy lock, and if it's a rough area you may want to think about doing something like taking the saddle with you.

Loud Noises

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #274 on: December 21, 2013, 08:20:57 AM »
I took care of a bunch of car maintenance on my own today.  Transmission flush, engine air filter, cabin air filter.  I spent roughly 1/4 of what it would've cost to have someone else do it and feel accomplished too.  Now the car is ready for the rather un-Mustachian 12 hour drive to spend Christmas with family next week.  Still cheaper than a flight!

annaraven

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #275 on: December 21, 2013, 01:20:21 PM »
Yesterday, instead of going out for Thai food (I had a craving), I pulled out a can of chicken rice soup and doctored it with curry and ginger and garlic and lime juice. Not really Thai of course, but hit all the flavors I was actually craving.

shamelessHedon

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #276 on: December 21, 2013, 05:54:11 PM »
Wired the neighbors bathroom. We help them out with remodeling and they housesit and care for our four pets when we travel, which is often. Yay for bartering services. 

kaetana

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #277 on: December 21, 2013, 11:38:00 PM »
Hooray for bikes!!

Bo be honest I think it's better to purchase a slightly better-than-bargain-basement bike- it'll be more fun to ride and $600 in Aus is about right at the moment I think. You'll make the money back in no time:

- Let's say for argument's sake that total cost of driving (incl fuel) comes to $0.40-$0.50/km (a little bit above what the ATO will allow deductions but not an unreasonable estimate)
- 7km one way = 14km return = $7.00 savings per day you commute.
- So $600/7 = 86 return trips to break even. Basically in 17 weeks (assuming 5 commuting trips/week) you'll have broken even with the purchase, and you'll be getting more exercise to boot! Hooray!
- If you're going to leave it at the train station be sure to get a sturdy lock, and if it's a rough area you may want to think about doing something like taking the saddle with you.

Thanks for the encouragement, stripey! I know I'll save money in the long run, but it's just still hard to imagine I spent that much. Oh well, it just means I'll have to work to make the purchase worth it!

Fireman

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #278 on: December 22, 2013, 08:04:46 AM »
I *accidentally* left my wallet at home when I left for work this morning.  No spending for 24 hours!

shamelessHedon

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #279 on: December 22, 2013, 10:53:22 AM »
Library run.

T-Rex

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #280 on: December 22, 2013, 08:46:22 PM »
Made my own coffee.
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tariskat

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #281 on: December 23, 2013, 08:21:26 AM »
Made my morning coffee, started dinner from frozen vegetables and a left over ham bone with hard to reach pieces on it in the crock pot, and started cooking a batch of red beans. I will half cook them, then freeze in portions so I can add them to every thing I cook in the next week or so.

RootofGood

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #282 on: December 23, 2013, 11:58:20 AM »
you guys know you can make your own pizza, right?

http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/forum/ask-a-mustachian/looking-for-homemade-pizza-recipes/

I'm eating DIY pizza right now, so much better than any pizza I could buy around here

I was lazy for lunch so I made pizza.  I used the naan recipe someone posted here a while back and froze the leftover naan.  It also makes excellent pizza crust, and you can prep the whole pizza in under 5 minutes.  Naan, marinara sauce, a little oregano/garlic powder/pepper flakes, then grate cheese on top (mmmm fresh mozzarella), add a little pepperoni, and a little more grated fresh mozzarella.  5 minutes in the toaster oven while I unload the dishwasher and boom, uber fresh hot pizza in about the same amount of time it would take to unwrap and cook a frozen pizza. 

I'm not sure if it saved any money because deli pepperoni and mozarrella aren't the cheapest stuff I can buy.  But it was way cheaper than driving out to get a takeout pizza or ordering delivery.  And much quicker than making a whole large pizza like I usually do when the whole family is dining with me.
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dude

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #283 on: December 23, 2013, 01:44:43 PM »
Didn't have anything to bring to work for lunch today, so I skipped lunch. 

JessieImproved

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #284 on: December 30, 2013, 08:36:58 PM »
Putting together an outfit for my one office day tomorrow, noticed a hole in my knit pants.  Darned hole.
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abuzzyisawesome

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #285 on: February 07, 2014, 10:51:53 AM »
Snatched my free greek yogurt coupon from Kroger, printed store list with coupons for each items based off the meal plan. Put cabbage in the crock pot this morning for cabbage and polish sausage for supper. Saved mashed potatoes that I almost threw away last night for potato cakes (to go with said cabbage and polish sausage). Prep work on fridays is a must - after work I have a tendency to run home, pour a glass of wine and order takeout.

C. K.

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #286 on: February 07, 2014, 11:41:17 AM »
Saved my grandmother's china cabinet from the woodpile. The aunts were going to throw it out. It's not rare or anything, but it's solid wood.

Cleaned it, painted it. Needed a bookcase anyway.

Saved about $200 and (because it's a functional heirloom) it means more to me than buying something new.

ketchup

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #287 on: February 07, 2014, 12:02:15 PM »
Drank my homemade kombucha last night for the first time.  Cost me about $0.10 instead of the $3.69 they charge for a bottle at Whole Foods!

MustachianAccountant

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #288 on: February 07, 2014, 12:20:00 PM »
Did anyone else notice that the vast majority of these revolve around food?
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spedleysam

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #289 on: February 07, 2014, 12:23:39 PM »
I installed my bidet!  So that is future savings on TP.  Although...I think I wasted some water playing around with it for the first time....

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #290 on: February 07, 2014, 12:24:18 PM »
Saved my grandmother's china cabinet from the woodpile. The aunts were going to throw it out. It's not rare or anything, but it's solid wood.

Cleaned it, painted it. Needed a bookcase anyway.

Saved about $200 and (because it's a functional heirloom) it means more to me than buying something new.

awesome! I love salvaged furniture, all the better that it was your grandma's :)

mollyjade

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #291 on: February 07, 2014, 12:37:41 PM »
I had an unexpected day off work due to weather. So far I've hemmed a pair of pants so I can actually wear them and cooked a pot of chickpeas for future use.

C. K.

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #292 on: February 07, 2014, 12:38:04 PM »

awesome! I love salvaged furniture, all the better that it was your grandma's :)

I'm glad lots of people like salvaged furniture. Most of the tips I received for re-envisioning the china cabinet came from online. Tips like using chalk paint so you don't have to prime the furniture.

swick

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #293 on: February 07, 2014, 12:39:52 PM »
Did anyone else notice that the vast majority of these revolve around food?

Probably because food is one of the biggest categories of ongoing spending and one of the easiest to have "small" wins in:)

Albert

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #294 on: February 07, 2014, 12:56:03 PM »
Most people most days don't buy anything other than food plus gas if they commute by cars. I bought some train tickets about 12 days ago, since then it's been groceries only (not counting rent and health insurance payments here).

homehandymum

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #295 on: February 07, 2014, 01:05:18 PM »
Dried 2 loads of clothes on the line.  Oh, and washed those clothes in cold water with home-made detergent.

Stayed home all day, as the car needed a new windscreen (they came to us and did it here.  Fully covered by the glass option in our insurance).  So no petrol used.

My 2-cup teapot only needs 1 teabag to make 2 cups of tea - I just leave it to steep for longer than usual and pop a kids hat over it as a teacosy (must make a teacosy one day).  3 cups if I use a small cup.
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Jomar

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #296 on: February 07, 2014, 02:03:03 PM »
Didn't shower (nor did my wife) and brought my lunch to work (vegetarian, as usual). Also, it was pay day today (!!!!!). Put a little over half my pay cheque into my TFSA (tax free savings account- see Frugal Toque's Canadian investing guide for those who don't know what this is) plus the automatic deductions off my pay cheque (18% incl company matches) into my RRSP and ESPP. Pretty damn mustachian day if I do say so myself!

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #297 on: February 07, 2014, 03:11:30 PM »
Heading to the post office to return a $10.75 purchase (the wrong item was sent) rather than saying F it and biting the cost.

The post office is about 2 miles from my house - I *was* going to stop on my drive home from work (~12 highway miles one way), but instead I'm driving straight home and biking to the post office.

Mini gas/auto wear savings + a small workout!
~"It is not who you are that holds you back, it's who you think you are not."

yyc-phil

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #298 on: February 07, 2014, 03:17:21 PM »
Today, I got myself a set of five brand new, never used cast iron pans in various sizes, free through Freecycle.org

I usually bike to run errand around the neighbourhood, but this time I had to drive 20 mn each way to pick them up, but for the price, this was well worth the drive.
No matter where you go, there you are...

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MrsPete

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #299 on: February 07, 2014, 03:49:55 PM »
I parked on the road near the airport (small town) to avoid paying $7 a day in parking fees for the 17 days I am away. That's me covered for this thread until early next year right? :)
Here's an idea for the future:  If you're flying or going on a cruise or whatever and need to leave your car somewhere, take it to a local auto shop and leave it for some basic maintenance (oil change, alignment, whatever).  Talk to the owner ahead of time and say that you'll need to leave it for a few days.  No one will tow your car for being "unattended", and you'll get the maintenance you needed done.

Made my own coffee.
Friend of mine has adopted an odd tactic:  She and her family GO THROUGH coffee.  She discovered a gas station (weird, I know) that sells coffee for $1.50/gallon.  She bought a thermos so she can pick up a gallon every couple days.  Says it's cheaper than brewing at home. 

I'm not sure if it saved any money because deli pepperoni and mozarrella aren't the cheapest stuff I can buy.  But it was way cheaper than driving out to get a takeout pizza or ordering delivery.  And much quicker than making a whole large pizza like I usually do when the whole family is dining with me.
Do you have a grocery store with a make-your-own salad bar that sells by the pound?  If so, compare the cost of filling a Styrofoam salad container with JUST cheese to the cost of buying cheese. 

Of course, then you're getting that pre-shredded stuff that has an additive to prevent it from clumping, so this is really a money-saving /health-questionable hint.

Snatched my free greek yogurt coupon from Kroger, printed store list with coupons for each items based off the meal plan. Put cabbage in the crock pot this morning for cabbage and polish sausage for supper. Saved mashed potatoes that I almost threw away last night for potato cakes (to go with said cabbage and polish sausage). Prep work on fridays is a must - after work I have a tendency to run home, pour a glass of wine and order takeout.
We are eating more cabbage.  It's SO cheap, and have you made homemade sauerkraut?  Seriously, it's about 30 minutes work for all you can eat all winter, and it only has three ingredients.  And don't say you don't like sauerkraut if you've never had REAL, HOMEMADE stuff.  It bears no resemblance to the stuff from a can or bag. 

Did anyone else notice that the vast majority of these revolve around food?
Well, you can't save on a big car repair or find a deal on your insurance every day -- but  you can save on food every day.