Friday, July 30, 2010

What I'm Working On

Our tv arrived today. I know it's not very frugal to get excited about a big flat screen. But, it is a planned, researched and paid for item and that feels pretty good.

Using What We Have in Baking-

I found a mostly empty bag of m&m's in the cabinet today.
The kids and I made m&m cookies today. I didn't let myself google the monster cookie recipe I wanted to make because I have an overflowing shelf of cookbooks that have been woefully neglected. I need to start using them. I bought a Mouse Cookies cookbook before I had kids and have only used it once to make peanut butter cookies. We made the jumbo chocolate chip cookie recipe and substituted m&ms for most of the chocolate chips. I had Big Girl read the ingredients to me and Little Guy carried them to the table and helped me measure. It was a fun experience for them. Now I just have to remain firm that those cookies will not be consumed by me.

I found six hot dog buns, a wrinkly peach, and aging milk in the fridge. I made bread pudding with them. I'm going to try not to consume this either although it smells really good.

Tuesday I made my normal banana bread with three smooshy bananas. I make banana bread so regularly that I don't even use a recipe anymore. I only measure the baking mix anymore. Here's my quickie version-
2 cups baking mix (I use homemade or Aldi)
1 egg
1/2 cup sugar
2 tbs. oil
Splash of vanilla
3 mashed bananas
Nuts are optional but we like them.
I sprinkle sugar on the top of the loaf too.
Bake at 350 for 55-60 minutes in a greased loaf pan

The kids and I finished our library reading pages this week. They both read 36 books and got:
3 free meals at Bob Evans restaurant
2 free tickets to a minor league baseball game
1 free paper back from Scholastic
1 free night at the Magic House (a children's museum- awesome fun)
3 free food items at Sonic
2 free food items at McDonalds
Blow up beach balls
1 piece of candy
Entry into a drawing for Cardinals tickets

I got an entry into a drawing too but I'm not sure what it's for. I LOVE my library card.

I'm thinking seriously about going cash only for my spending habits. It's so easy to charge on my Discover card and I do. I now parting with cash would be harder for me. And also, tend to hate to got to the ATM.

My gift tubs are full too. Right now toys are on clearance at department stores so I've been buying presents for Christmas. I bought a Holiday 2009 Barbie for $5 at K-Mart this week. The lady in front of me had one too. We must have bought the last two. They were originally over $50. But, if the tubs are full it's time to stop buying. I picked up two retro packs of gum for part of my Father In Law's Christmas present for a quarter at Dollar Tree- Black Jack and Beemans today though. (I also bought Tame shampoo- anyone remember Tame from the 70's? (and no I know I didn't need shampoo- I told you I needed to take the credit card out of my wallet.)

That's all I can come up with for now.


twelvedaysold said...

I loved the summer reading programs when I was a kid. They were the best!

jonceramic said...

FWIW, the TV is the cheapest, yet really well reviewed TV in its size/type class. It's a 50" Plasma by Samsung. (

The avsforum guys will tell you it doesn't have enough "blacks" or something. But, honestly, I went to Sears, and could NOT tell the difference between this set and the $5000 sets at 60" (except those do 3D). The Amazon price dipped to $899 briefly, and I snapped it up. (It's my spleen money. You can't stop me.) Unlike no-name Walmart cheapos, it has all of our hookups for VGA, HDMI, regular video. I picked up a cable for our MacBook to hook up to it. And I bought an extra Wii for $110 off of eBay to play Netflix and zombie games on.

It is an EXTRAVAGANCE. But, for once, we're treating ourselves. And we're doing it prudently, and well within our budget. And, if you think of it this way... we've been DirectTV free for 2+ years now. At $40 a month, we've already saved the price of the TV by cancelling that service. We were at $20 netflix for a while too! $8.99 netflix + library + free redboxes + streaming TV through our laptop = more choices than we ever watch.

Rhonda said...

you're doing great! I do spend less when I use cash instead of a credit card.