Author Topic: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?  (Read 2013780 times)

Primm

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #850 on: May 14, 2014, 08:16:41 PM »
Over the past 3 days experimented with weighing the coffee I use in the french press.  Discovered no taste benefit using 1.25 oz vs 1.00 ounces of beans for 32oz water.  If coffee is 10$/lb:

1 pot x 1oz x 62.5 cents / oz x 300 days = 187$/year on coffee.  (~65 days a year not making coffee for one reason or other)

That's versus

1 x 1.25 x 62.5 x 300 = $234

Saving approximately  $47/year.

Stealing this idea. Genius.

+1.

I have an automatic machine that grinds the beans (it was a gift!). I've change the strength from 3 beans to 2 beans (no idea what that means either...) and can't taste a noticeable difference.

SJS

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #851 on: May 14, 2014, 09:38:41 PM »
We went out for dinner, BUT, we had our one drink before we left the house!  (we were totally fine to drive).  Alcohol is so overpriced in restaurants it makes me crazy to pay their prices!  So we had our drink then drove the 5 miles for dinner! 

tmac

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #852 on: May 15, 2014, 07:02:17 AM »
Yesterday morning, I took the car to the dealership to have a recall issue taken care of. They told me that the rear brake pads needed replacing. It normally cost $200-something, but they had a coupon that would bring it down to $180-something. Instead, I brought it to my neighborhood mechanic afterward and walked home. He verified that they did need replacing, and charged me $140 to do it.

Last night's dinner was carrot soup drizzled with sriracha, kale salad, and whole grain rolls. The math works out to about $1.10/person ($5.50 total), even if I'd bought everything brand new just for this meal, which I didn't. I only bought the kale. Everything else was left over or about to turn bad, or incidental condiments. I also have two quarts of soup and two rolls left over to use as lunch today. If I'd bought everything pre-made (stock, pre-cut kale, rolls), it would have been closer to $2.50 ($12.50 total)

Tonight, we'll have black bean and brown rice burritos, which will include various chopped left-over veggies and herbs. The beans were dried and the tortillas were on deep discount for Cinco de Mayo. Price per person is about 60 cents.

LiseE

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #853 on: May 15, 2014, 08:25:21 AM »
Quote
New to the Mustachian business. Spouse and I have ordered pizza I think every Friday for the last 15 years. It gets me out of cooking dinner and provides Spouse with leftovers for lunch over the weekend. But, $30. So this Thursday I made some pizza dough & sauce and left the 2 balls of dough in the fridge to rise overnight. On Friday I rolled 1 ball out and topped and baked it. It was not wonderful, so Spouse & I conferred and made some changes, and I baked the 2nd ball for Spouse's lunch on Saturday. Better, but still not as good as delivery. He had the remaining leftovers for lunch today, so that counts toward today's savings. But I'm determined to get it right. If anyone has tips for homemade pizza, I'm all ears.

Stick with it!  We also switched from ordering pizza on Friday nights to making our own dough and gravy (sauce for you non-italians!) .. we love changing it up with toppings.  I used some left over pesto to top one pizza and it was delish!  I've been trying different dough recipes and I think we're just getting it right after 4 weeks of trying.

:)

Breaker

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #854 on: May 15, 2014, 09:06:28 AM »
I gave my dogs a bath and brush.  After talking to a friend who complained that taking his Golden in for a Bath and Brush + Nail trim cost a lot of $$$.  I hooked the hose up to the sink in the garage.  It has hot water and gave all the dogs a bath in the driveway. 

Jan

Beardog

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #855 on: May 15, 2014, 02:40:59 PM »
Since Microsoft stopped supporting Windows XP, today I installed Ubuntu (with the help of a friend) so I don't have to upgrade my computer and/or buy more Microsoft software!  Not an original idea, but I'm still proud. 

NeverWasACornflakeGirl

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #856 on: May 16, 2014, 05:35:40 AM »
I hooked the hose up to the sink in the garage.  It has hot water and gave all the dogs a bath in the driveway. 

Jan

OMG -- why didn't I ever think of doing this???  I've been giving mine a bath in the bathtub in our only bathroom and it's such a mess!  Now that it's getting warmer I am definitely doing this.  Thanks for the idea!!
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alibean

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #857 on: May 16, 2014, 09:48:41 PM »
I signed my contract to be a school nurse next school year- all but eliminating our need for child care during the summer.  Plus, a benefit of working for the district is that I get 20% off any before or after school care we might need.  Hopefully, in the next year or so, I'll be able to transfer to my kids' school and eliminate the need for child care completely. 

I have also been working _very_ part-time so I'll have about 4x the income I had previously.  Biggest change will be working on my time management making sure we continue to eat most of our meals at home. 

surfhb

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #858 on: May 16, 2014, 10:32:40 PM »
I built this AC since its been 100 degree F in Huntington Beach, Ca

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HxSLbpAwibg

Cassie

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #859 on: May 17, 2014, 01:52:15 PM »
I make pizza dough in my bed machine using the recipe in the book & it turns out really yummy!

Rural

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #860 on: May 17, 2014, 05:35:34 PM »
Craving ice cream like nobody's business, but instead of driving to town spending the gas (and the calories), I pulled some frozen bananas out of the freezer, threw in a decadent amount of cocoa,whirred and  enjoyed. It was great.

warfreak2

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #861 on: May 17, 2014, 06:18:09 PM »
I bought 6.5kg of chopped potatoes/carrots.

Because they were reduced to clear, and there was only 6.5kg available.
I am a mathematician who teaches computer science, makes music and plays Go.

Erica/NWEdible

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #862 on: May 18, 2014, 09:26:38 AM »
Pressure canned 13 quarts and 18 pints of homemade chili. Homebrew Husband has easy lunches for work for awhile.

CheapskateWife

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #863 on: May 18, 2014, 09:35:44 AM »
Participated in BountifulBaskets.org distribution, and got to know some of our cheapskate neighbors a little better.

For those of you who don't know, its a grocerty distribution (not local but cheap!) and basically you by a "share" for $15 for and whatever is on the truck gets split by the total number of shares purchased (with limits of course so that it is still economical.  There are some very yummy and reasonable upgrades available too.  For youngun's working on building up volunteerism hours, its usually an hour on Saturday morning...easy peasy!  And when you volunteer, you get first crack at the leftover food once the shares have been divided...score!

Using this service twice a month (and a little more diligence) seems to have reduced our grocery bill by 25% aka $200 little soldiers headed over to pay of my Student Loan!  Absolutely amazing!

1967mama

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #864 on: May 18, 2014, 02:51:21 PM »
Desperately wanted to go to McDonald's for lunch with the family after an outing this morning, but came home and made pancakes instead ... SCORE!

Begonia

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #865 on: May 18, 2014, 07:01:29 PM »
Washed hair with baking soda. Was on a roll of doing that for several months a few years back and I liked the results. Then got some fancy highlights and thought it would mess with the color, so I  stopped. For Mustachian reasons I'm back to my natural color and thought I'd try it again. It can take a couple of weeks for hair to get used to it, but then it's easy, cheap, and very satisfying to put that shampoo money to better use.

If you're interested in learning more about the no 'poo approach, read here: http://www.crunchybetty.com/no-poo-to-you-too

horsepoor

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #866 on: May 18, 2014, 07:42:40 PM »
Got my cooler all ready to go with my food for the week while I'm out of town for work.  Aiming to go out no more than twice this week, as needed for work socializing.

Primm

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #867 on: May 19, 2014, 12:33:42 AM »
10km walking loop to go to the post office, pay my car rego and pick up some library books I had on hold. Bought a coffee with change I found in the back shed of the house we just bought. Score! :)

Emilyngh

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #868 on: May 19, 2014, 05:30:59 AM »
Going strawberry picking with my spouse, daughter, and a friend and planning on picking 15 lbs of fruit for our family.   My friend will be picking more.

Fun family/friend activity just for the cost of the berries, which my friend and I will spend the next day making into low sugar jam.    Spouse and daughter go through a ton of natural jam (which is not cheap).   So 15 lbs should give us a few lbs to eat and freeze, while leaving enough to make about 12 16 Oz jars of jam, which should last us about a year.   

If this works well, we might go in blueberry season too.   We'll freeze a lot of those (blueberry smoothies and frozen blueberries on oatmeal are my favorite), but we'll probably make some jam from those too.   Extra homemade jam makes a great gift (to bring to parties, etc).   

We also have about an acre of our own black raspberries, which we'll be picking when ripe for eating, freezing for smoothies, and making into cobblers.

Bring on the berries!

tanhanivar

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #869 on: May 19, 2014, 05:51:40 AM »
Cooked a big pot of starter-mix (mince, vegetables, sauce etc) to make soup and chilli with. And agreed to buy a second-hand electric bicycle AND called the manufacturer ahead of time to get an idea of what to look for, replacement battery costs, value etc (I can certainly recommend the Australian Electric Bicycle Company for customer service) which let me confidently offer $300 less than the asking price.

oldtoyota

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #870 on: May 19, 2014, 08:18:54 AM »
Although it did not happen today, we got free mulch! I was going to buy some and then noticed my town is giving mulch away. This saved me about $30-50.


ketchup

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #871 on: May 19, 2014, 08:42:28 AM »
Diagnosed a bad PCV valve in my car today.  I'm going to replace it today for $5 and 10 minutes of time.  Should avoid my engine blowing an oil leak later, and be overall better for power and efficiency.  Saves me the time to fix oil leaks later, and doing it myself will save me probably more than it should.  I hope a shop wouldn't bill an hour of labor for a 10 minute job, but they probably would.

nikki

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #872 on: May 19, 2014, 07:04:09 PM »
I ate leftover ramen for breakfast. Double whammy! With homemade baked spring rolls from the freezer ^__^

Oh, and I put bean sprouts I got from my neighbor in the ramen last night. He couldn't finish his CSA produce before it went bad due to being gone almost all week, so I got 1/4 a cabbage, a bag of bean sprouts, and a cucumber. He tried to give me a bag of ginger and some water parsley, but I showed him he could 1) grate the ginger, freeze it in ice cubes, and use them in cooking straight from the freezer, and 2) regrow the water parsley in cups of water. So I saved him money too. A little. He wouldn't take the bean sprouts back after I revealed they could be blanched and frozen (exactly what I did).

peppermint

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #873 on: May 19, 2014, 08:23:26 PM »
Brought one of several single-serving homemade soups I had stockpiled in the freezer for work.
Did some pretty smart grocery Tetris and saved a lot when I went grocery shopping today.

pachnik

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #874 on: May 19, 2014, 08:33:28 PM »
We needed a 'new' chair since the one we had in the living room was very uncomfortable.  My husband found a really good one on Craigslist and went out and got it today - at least $1,000 savings from the retail price.

swick

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #875 on: May 19, 2014, 09:04:08 PM »
but I showed him he could 1) grate the ginger, freeze it in ice cubes, and use them in cooking straight from the freezer,
I just toss my ginger right into the freezer when it comes home whole. Then grate from frozen as needed. It is super easy to grate and you get exactly what you want. I have done the same thing the one time I managed to find some fresh galangal, been working on the same stach for three years and tastes totally fresh.

1967mama

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #876 on: May 19, 2014, 09:17:59 PM »
Quote
I just toss my ginger right into the freezer when it comes home whole. Then grate from frozen as needed. It is super easy to grate and you get exactly what you want.

Great idea, swick! One quick question: do you peel off the outer peel first (or whatever it is! haha)?
« Last Edit: May 19, 2014, 09:25:42 PM by swick »

swick

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #877 on: May 19, 2014, 09:27:55 PM »
I just give them a rinse and a dry before. when you grate it from frozen a little bit of skin doesn't matter at all. If you wanted to you could rub a spoon over the surface to easily rub off the skin.

norabird

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #878 on: May 19, 2014, 10:08:21 PM »
Not sure how much this counts buuuut I had a pre-MMM J Crew credit card (yep) and while the balance is gone I still got a $25 rewards card in the mail recently. Used it to buy new shorts for $23.99 on sale today (got $1.01 in change back!), which I really wanted before going on vacation to Spain this Friday since my only other pair was a size too big. Of course let's not talk about the interest I previously paid on all the unneeded clothes I bought in the past...but I did need new shorts and got them without spending any money!

Also went to a free reading tonight (with a free short story booklet and a free glass of wine) where I ran into old colleagues unexpectedly. Ate my frozen Tj's lunch for dinner before heading up there.

Basenji

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #879 on: May 20, 2014, 06:05:52 AM »
Quote
I just toss my ginger right into the freezer when it comes home whole. Then grate from frozen as needed. It is super easy to grate and you get exactly what you want.

Great idea, swick! One quick question: do you peel off the outer peel first (or whatever it is! haha)?
A Japanese friend taught me something similar. I peel it lightly and then cut the whole thing into inch pieces,  put them in a baggie in the freezer. Works great.

peppermint

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #880 on: May 20, 2014, 07:55:58 AM »
Quote
I just toss my ginger right into the freezer when it comes home whole. Then grate from frozen as needed. It is super easy to grate and you get exactly what you want.

Great idea, swick! One quick question: do you peel off the outer peel first (or whatever it is! haha)?
A Japanese friend taught me something similar. I peel it lightly and then cut the whole thing into inch pieces,  put them in a baggie in the freezer. Works great.

This is a great idea! Thanks for teaching me something new.

oldtoyota

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #881 on: May 20, 2014, 08:04:23 AM »
Craving ice cream like nobody's business, but instead of driving to town spending the gas (and the calories), I pulled some frozen bananas out of the freezer, threw in a decadent amount of cocoa,whirred and  enjoyed. It was great.

I do this too! We have a bunch of frozen bananas stored for this purpose. It's also good with peanut butter blended in.

What better way to have cheap, vegan (for those who care), ice cream without chemical additives?

oldtoyota

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #882 on: May 20, 2014, 08:05:55 AM »
I am back to working out at home with a real workout found on YouTube. No gym fee! No video purchase!

Ottawa

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #883 on: May 20, 2014, 08:07:17 AM »
Ginger in the freezer does indeed grate very nicely.  Question is - why do people want to peel ginger at all?  I just cut off any dried out/manky bits.  The peel is paper thin and contributes no adverse flavours or textures. 
Signing up for Tangerine Bank?  Let's both earn some cash!  Here is my Tangerine Key: 43684467S1  Cheers.

lithy

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #884 on: May 20, 2014, 08:28:02 AM »
Thanks to the Superguide, I got the courage up to switch from my T-Mobile prepaid minutes plan to PlatinumTel's plan.  Same service coverage, less than half the price.  I was using about $15/month for minutes and text, I'm hoping to cut that in half or better.  Porting was a breeze.

Also, while it is not our only method of payment (we used the Discover card whenever possible), we use PNC as our main checking account and since I usually handle most bills and payments every two weeks on payday, sometimes in the time between then, I log in and get this message.

Weekly Spending Overview of May 14 - May 20

You haven't spent anything this week.

It always depends on my mood how I read that sentence, sometimes I think the bank is being sarcastic with me, sometimes it is shocked and surprised, other times it is condescending in a "you're doing it wrong" kind of way.

swick

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #885 on: May 20, 2014, 08:52:20 AM »
Ginger in the freezer does indeed grate very nicely.  Question is - why do people want to peel ginger at all?  I just cut off any dried out/manky bits.  The peel is paper thin and contributes no adverse flavours or textures.

Totally agree! I just grated some freezer ginger into a teriyaki marinade for some beef jerky. Got an amazing deal on some beef (never happens here!) so made our own roast beef for sandwiches and the rest is going to be jerky.

Zaga

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #886 on: May 20, 2014, 09:01:52 AM »
I needed to get gas for the mower, and the gas station is less than a mile away, so I found the luggage cart and walked down to get the gas.  Didn't save much, but it was sure a nice walk!

Basenji

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #887 on: May 20, 2014, 09:45:53 AM »
Ginger in the freezer does indeed grate very nicely.  Question is - why do people want to peel ginger at all?  I just cut off any dried out/manky bits.  The peel is paper thin and contributes no adverse flavours or textures.

For some "clean" applications in Japanese food (garnish, making ginger pickles, in a clear soup) I do like it peeled, but yeah if you're doing a stirfry or otherwise mixing it all in, not much need to peel it.

nikki

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #888 on: May 20, 2014, 08:32:06 PM »
Ginger in the freezer does indeed grate very nicely.  Question is - why do people want to peel ginger at all?  I just cut off any dried out/manky bits.  The peel is paper thin and contributes no adverse flavours or textures.

I just grate the ginger with the peel after a nice rinse and scrub.

I think my motivation for grating it all at once and freezing in ice cube trays is super convenience. I spend a few minutes working my arm muscles to grate all of it at once, then for months never have to grate ginger again. It really does seem to make cooking with ginger less of a hassle to me :-p

So there's my reasoning! Swick's comment that you can just freeze it whole and grate it easier is totally true, though. If you like grating ginger each time you cook with it.

swick

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #889 on: May 21, 2014, 10:03:05 AM »
Ginger in the freezer does indeed grate very nicely.  Question is - why do people want to peel ginger at all?  I just cut off any dried out/manky bits.  The peel is paper thin and contributes no adverse flavours or textures.

I just grate the ginger with the peel after a nice rinse and scrub.

I think my motivation for grating it all at once and freezing in ice cube trays is super convenience. I spend a few minutes working my arm muscles to grate all of it at once, then for months never have to grate ginger again. It really does seem to make cooking with ginger less of a hassle to me :-p

So there's my reasoning! Swick's comment that you can just freeze it whole and grate it easier is totally true, though. If you like grating ginger each time you cook with it.

Good reasoning, Nikki :) I tend to cook a lot by feel and taste so I like to have the flexibility to put in just a little or a lot or a little bit more. I may try your suggestion though for things that I know will use a LOT of ginger...like ginger beef.

FYI: you can do the same thing with hot peppers - toss them whole into the freezer and slice or grate off a bit as needed. Makes a huge difference to our meals when we have to travel so far for fresh produce.

tmac

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #890 on: May 21, 2014, 11:31:41 AM »
Nice peppers on sale at the store + some masa languishing in the back of the pantry + working through a giant bag of frozen Costco chicken before we move next month = Chicken fajitas on homemade corn tortillas.

greenmimama

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #891 on: May 21, 2014, 12:10:19 PM »
I am making breakfast food dinner instead of ordering pizza when friends come for dinner tonight, it should be a feast, they are even bringing additions :)

payitoff

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #892 on: May 21, 2014, 12:32:50 PM »
took the bus/train to work today, spent $5 instead of filling up the tank again

peppermint

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #893 on: May 21, 2014, 02:22:56 PM »
Rode my bike to work yesterday and today.
I need a bedside reading lamp, so I posted on the neighbourhood listserv to see if anyone has one lying around for free or cheap (the listserv is very active, so I'm pretty sure I'll get some responses).

nikki

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #894 on: May 21, 2014, 06:46:36 PM »
I MADE YOGURT!

At least, I think I did. It looks and smells like yogurt. ;-D

Straining some whey from it in the fridge. I hope it's good! I bought the cheapy ultra-pasteurized milk (most common in Korea by far), which I've read isn't optimal for yogurt-creation. But if this works, oh lordy that's a potential quality of life boost and source of savings!

galliver

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #895 on: May 21, 2014, 10:11:07 PM »
Told my boyfriend I wasn't visiting this weekend. It's primarily more to save time/regain sanity after 2 weekends traveling/maybe catch up on research (crunch time for a conference). Bus ticket is like $40-45. But this is sad savings. We haven't seen each other a lot in the last month. :(

However, we're moving across country and moving in together in <3 months though, so plenty of time to get sick of each other then! ;)

LiseE

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #896 on: May 22, 2014, 10:30:36 AM »
Watched a youtube video and learned how to cut my boys hair.  At $15 a piece every couple of months or so, that really adds up! 

RootofGood

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #897 on: May 22, 2014, 10:37:23 AM »
Foraged for mulberries along the walk to/from school (dropping off the kids).  I collected a bunch, ate a bunch while picking, and joined the kids at school for their free breakfast (which we all shared).  Picked more on the way home at a different tree.  By the time I got home, I still had 2.4 oz of mulberries left.  At current prices in the store for similar fruits, that's still $1.50 worth, and we probably ate another 5-6 oz throughout the morning.  So I foraged around $5 worth of fruit.  Mrs. Rootofgood also tipped me off to another tree in a less traveled part of the neighborhood.
Retired at age 33 to spend more time with my wife and 3 kids.  2 years in and still loving every minute!
Sharing my thoughts on early retirement, finances, taxes, travel, and life in general at rootofgood.com

swick

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #898 on: May 22, 2014, 01:28:58 PM »
Going to reuse my Teriyaki marinade from making beef jerky and turn it into a sauce for supper tonight :)

1967mama

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Re: What small things did you do TODAY to save money?
« Reply #899 on: May 22, 2014, 01:37:20 PM »
Made a crock pot dinner ( Mexican Chicken) and a rice cooker full of rice for the family since I will be out tonite. If I didn't do this, I'm 100% sure that dad would order pizza!

Recipe:

In bottom of crock, place frozen chicken pieces. I had breasts today.
Add 1-2 cans each of drained black beans and corn (or use frozen corn)
Pour over a generous amount of salsa
After a couple of hours, dice up a large block of cream cheese and stir in.

Serve over rice, pasta or in a wrap.
Delish!and a very forgiving recipe.