Friday, December 11, 2009

Frugal Friday #4 - a little of this and a little of that

This week I have a little food idea and then some frugal entertainment for this time of year.  Notice I am changing it from Frugal FOOD to just Frugal Friday....

This week's grocery tip has to do with side dishes.  Instead of buying a bag of frozen carrots or a can of carrots plus a bag of mini/carrots for one large bag of normal good old carrots.  Take 20 minutes to wash, peel, and slice them up to meet your needs....slice them in sticks for lunches or dipping (I store them in a container with some water to keep them crisp), cut them in circles for steaming, casseroles, or salad toppers.  The price will be better, the carrots last a long time in the veggie drawer - and the taste- WAY better than canned, frozen, or baby.  Nothing beats a "real" carrot.

And just a reminder...tomorrow when you wake up and decide to make pancakes for the family on a cold and cozy morning...make an extra batch and freeze them up.  Freeze them on a sheet first and then bag them and they will pop out of the bag easily...or freeze them together with a piece of wax paper between each one.  Think of how many pancakes you make ...compared to a box of 10 eggo waffles.  And they are homemade and you know everything that went into them.  Money saved!

2.  Entertainment:

During this month take an evening and bundle everyone up.  Give the kids a lollipop or a bag of crackers and go for a drive.  Look at Christmas lights...make it your mission to find the best house of lights...or the house that maybe should have just not attempted.  We did this the other night and it was delightful.  The boys loved it and it gave us all a moment to calm down.  We turned on the Christmas radio channel and listened to holiday carols.

Another little activity....turn out the lights and sit in front of your tree with your little ones.  Give everyone their own flashlight.  Have the Xmas lights on.  Play I spy (I spy Santa holding a fishing pole....I spy Thomas the Train...I spy a candy cane) and have the kids shine their light on the ornament when they find it.  Turn the tree lights off for an added challenge.  

My frugal moment of the week:  I bought my Xmas cards at Walgreens this year.  I did them online and was able to pick them up in an hour.  I think that is pretty good!  When I picked them up they printed off my reciept and along with it came a coupon...that I just threw in the basket.  Then Henry and I were on a mission to find a box of something for someone on my list.  They sell them there 2 for 5 bucks...they didn't have them out but they did have 2 for 3$ boxes...unfortunatley they only had one.  So I asked for help...she found the 2 for $5 in back and so I settled on those..then she ran up and had another box of the 2 for $3.  So I took those and put the 2/$5 back.  The man checking me out was diligant and looked at the coupon in the basket that I threw aside.  My bill came $3.21....he then said, "are you sure you don't want to find something else.  If you buy $5 worth of stuff you will get $5 off."  So I ran and got those other two boxes.  My bill was $3.21 and I got all four boxes!  SCORE!  I hear about people that use coupons and get things for free...never happens to me.  SCORE!

I did not grocery shop this week..instead picked up a few fruits, veggies, and bread.  We survived the week without a big shop.  Nice to do around the holidays.  Meal group really helps with that.  I have a nice stash that we are eating through.  

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