Thursday, January 8, 2009

Frugal Friday

I can't stand paying for kitchen trash bags and have been trying to come up with a suitable alternative. When I ordered a coat for my son for Christmas, the envelope it arrived in was more like a large plastic bag. I was thrilled because I realized I could recycle this "envelope" and use it as a trash bag. (It takes very little to thrill me.) Ladies (and gents), we just have to be on our toes and be creative!

Another way to save on kitchen trash bags is to just have less trash. My church has a dumpster in the parking lot for recycling paper. The church gets a certain amount of money for every pound of paper it collects. So I can stretch my dollars, save the environment and "give" to my church in one fell swoop!

I also like to find creative ways to disguise birthday and Christmas gifts for my children. At Christmas I used a round tube like box that originally held dishwasher detergent concentrated packs. I put the gift in the box with some tissue paper for padding and wrapped it up. I've saved the box for future use. I think I may be able to make a sort of gift bag out of it if I put a handle on it and cover the box with some pretty wrapping paper. I've also saved an empty racquet ball container that I'll probably use to put a gift card and some candy in the next time one of my kids has a birthday party to go to. I am not an unusually creative person, so if I can think of these things, so can you!

Oh, scroll down to my post entitled Kings and Queens of Cheap to see what a few people in my local area are doing to save some dough.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Frugal Friday

I've been away from my blog and Frugal Fridays for quite awhile, so forgive me if someone has posted something similar recently.

Today's economy is going to the dogs. Well, at least our pets are feeling the pinch too. The last time we bought dry dog food, we bought a different brand because it was on sale and half the price of our dog's regular food. We usually add a spoonful of canned dog food to Otto's meal to give it some extra flavor. Lately, we've been trying some alternatives to the canned food in order to save a little money. (I know, you could argue that we don't need to give him canned food at all, but have a heart!)

Our 11-year-old likes soup for lunch but never seems to finish his bowl. We just put it in the fridge and spoon some over Otto's dry food at meal time. I know this may not be the healthiest thing for a dog, but on occasion I think it's okay. My husband made a pot roast in the crock pot for our Christmas dinner. He put carrots and onions in with the meat. I can't stand carrots, and our kids don't like cooked carrots, so Ots has gotten a few of those too. This is just a small way we can stretch our dog food budget.

We also have a rabbit. The litter can be expensive, especially if you want some odor control. I recently read that some people just use shredded paper for litter. My husband works from home and has a paper shredder, so I think I'm going to try this. I'll probably use have litter and half paper and gradually see how far I can go before odor becomes a problem. Plus, I'm a little concerned as to whether shredded paper is healthy for the rabbit.

We received some seed catalogs in the mail this week, and my husband began plotting out this summer's garden. He has decided to grow carrots (again, not my favorite) in order to feed the rabbit.

On another note.......when you visit your local Salvation Army or Goodwill stores, remember to check out their dishes & knick-knack section. Just before Christmas I found a Norman Rockwell Christmas mug for $.99 (I love Norman!) and a cute snowman cookie plate for $2.99. I was thrilled with these finds!