Free Cotton Balls

“Watch the pennies and the dollars will take care of themselves.” Benjamin Franklin

Yes, it’s allergy season. I am now taking Allegra 180 twice a day…plus Singulair…plus an occasional Benadryl. My husband also takes Allegra 180 and that is 90 pills a month. We buy a double pack of the generic brand with 60 tablets twice a month.

The bottle comes with cotton on top of it to keep the pills from breaking during transit.Pill bottle and cotton

I take that cotton and cut it into 4 cotton balls. Pill bottle and cotton swabs

We don’t have to take this much year round and it averages out to 60 cotton balls. It may seem like it is not worth it, but Benjamin Franklin penned a universal law, “If you pay attention to the little things, the big things will take care of themselves.” When you are in the habit of using every last bit, you will not waste any, and you will be able to postpone buying more.

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Blue Dawn Cleans “Ring Around the Collar”

Iowa dirt is black. It is wonderful for gardens and fields, but is hard to clean out of clothes. My husband has work shirts, that have the name of the lumberyard and his name on them. He is in and out of the two buildings all day long. When mixed with sweat, that good, old Iowa dirt blowing around made stubborn “ring around the collar.”Shirt collar

I use Dawn dish washing soap to clean grease, butter, oil, and salad dressing out of clothes. I decided to use it to tackle that “ring around the collar.” I drew a line with the Dawn and rubbed it in. I let it sit while I washed a different load of clothes.Dish soap and shirt collar

Then I scrubbed it with a brush and rinsed it thoroughly. I threw it in the wash, and when it came out, the ring was gone!Clean shirt collar

I use blue Dawn to make my laundry soap. I always have some on hand and no longer buy special soap for “ring around the collar.”

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Stretching Syrup

Monday was David’s birthday and he asked for homemade waffles for breakfast. I reminded him that we still had some blueberry syrup left, but when we got out the jar, it was almost empty.

I was not going without blueberry syrup on my waffle!

I added a tablespoon of corn syrup to the bottle. Corn syrup and blueberry syrup

I shook the bottle well,  to get the bits of blueberry off the sides, and turned it upside down. Upside down jar of blueberry syrup

By the time I finished making the rest of the waffles, the syrup and blueberry bits were down at the bottom of the bottle. There was plenty!Waffle on a plate

I used a spatula to scrape the batter off of the measuring cup and bowl. I used my finger to scrape the extra batter off of the spatula and found there was enough for one more waffle. Waffle

Always use every last drop!

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Waffle Garlic Bread

One of the best parts of our weekend away was breakfast at the motel. They used real plates, cups, glasses, silverware, and offered: egg rounds, bacon rounds, biscuits, gravy, and “make your own waffles.” They had chocolate chip batter and I was in heaven. I covered that waffle with strawberries, blueberries, sliced almonds, cinnamon, and whipped cream!

David said he saw a lady take a piece of buttered bread and put it in the waffle iron instead of making a waffle. It was a Belgian Waffle maker and they were thick! That gave me an idea!

While we were gone, our youngest was on his own for meals. You guessed it…he made hot dogs. (Yuck.) And every time you have hot dogs, you end up with two extra buns. (Why do they do that?)

I made angel hair pasta with homemade spaghetti sauce for dinner Friday. I took those two hot dog buns, cut them in half, and buttered them. I sprinkled them with garlic, oregano, and a dash of rosemary and stuck them in my waffle iron until the light went off.

Waffle Garlic Bread!

It worked! I don’t like to use the oven in the summer and the waffle iron is smaller than my electric grill. I made the spaghetti sauce in a Crock Pot and let it simmer all day. A salad, watermelon sticks, and chocolate pudding completed the meal. I put mini marshmallows and trail mix on top of the pudding for fun!

I wonder what else I can make with that waffle maker?Hot Dog Buns on a dish

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Shopping for a Chest of Drawers with a $65.00 Budget and $7.00 Cash

My husband works for a small lumber company. How small is it? There are only two salesmen…and one is a farmer…and you work every other Saturday morning. That means you can only take vacations in the winter.

Unless your Saturday off is a Holiday weekend!

David got lucky and had Saturday, July 2nd off. We decided to spend the long weekend in Des Moines. I looked at everything there was to do, but decided I wanted to spend the time shopping for a chest of drawers for our youngest.

His buffet/dresser served three generations. The repaired drawers were more suited for cloth napkins and tablecloths than for clothes.

We just replaced the washer and I knew our budget for appliances was not large. It discouraged me to find there was only $65.00 in that account. On top of that, I had purchased 4 pair of shoes on clearance prices and didn’t even have much spending money left.

We took off on Saturday and I had $7.00 in my wallet. David had the money for food in his wallet. The motel and gas money came out of our vacation budget. I actually thought about staying home, but we love eating at new places, so off we went.

We pulled up the used furniture stores in the Des Moines area on David’s phone and used the GPS to try to find them. Several were in the poorer sections and we didn’t even bother to stop. We did go through D.A.V. Thrift Store, run by disabled veterans, because we wanted to support them. We didn’t find what we were looking for there.

Our last stop was “Do Overz.” I loved the look of this store when I went to their website and I was not disappointed when I went inside! The owner sells furniture on consignment and she is very choosy about what she takes.

We found two!

The first chest we found was dark wood and had a bit of scratching on the top and the front. But it had two things going for it: 1) It had the same manufacturer of the chest of drawers we purchased a few months ago, and 2) It was $68.00!

The second chest was in better shape, but it was light wood and cost $124.00. I thought it was a better deal, but it will be in the “locker room.” (The guys keep their clothes in our large laundry room/bathroom and we dubbed it the “locker room.”) When we first moved in, the basement flooded and we had to throw away carpets, couches, and chairs. If that happened again, I would be crushed to have this nice chest be damaged.

We bought the dark chest. It fit our budget and it matches.

Don’t be discouraged when you don’t have a large budget to work with. You might be surprised at what you can find in consignment shops, thrift stores, auctions, and garage sales. Chest of drawers

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“Snuggie’s” Summer Use

I shared on April 29, 2013 how I used the “Snuggie” we received as a gift. It really helped keep me warm on cold, rainy days.

I found I could use it to keep me comfortable during the hot days of summer. I use a leather office chair, and when it is hot and sticky out, that chair becomes hot and sticky. I got out that “Snuggie” and tied it to my office chair. My arms and legs no longer stick!Snuggie covered office chairOffice chair

When I am comfortable in the office chair, I am not tempted to turn the air conditioner down.

©2009-2016 frugalfish.org. All rights reserved.

pamela.frugalfish@gmail.com

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Discard Warranties in Foreign Languages

I shared before how I file my warranties in my filing cabinet. I read of one lady who kept her warranties in three-hole punched Ziplock bags. She had one category for each bag. She kept them in a large notebook.

I tried that, but I had way too many warranties because I keep them all. I also keep copies of the receipt, stapled to the warranty, and the original box.

The last time I cleaned out my filing cabinet, I decided to just keep the English warranty.  I cut off the warranties in other languages. That cut down the bulkiness of the files.

Only keep what you can read!Warranty with foreign languages cut off.

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Measuring Spoons on a Key Ring

“You know you haven’t cleaned your cabinet out in a while when you are  finding sippy cups in it. Oh my!” Antoinette

I am a little over half-way through cleaning and organizing my kitchen cupboards. I saw my friend Antoinette was tackling the same job. Her post was hilarious because her baby is in 8th grade!

I get the most pleasure from opening my drawers now. I gave my daughter the duplicate utensils and organized the rest.

My baking drawer was the most frustrating. After trying to find the correct measuring spoon unsuccessfully, I came up with a brainstorm.

Key Rings

My metal measuring spoons came on a display rack that broke. (It lasted a few decades.) I also had a set of plastic measuring spoons. I decided to put both sets on to key rings. It worked great!Measuring Spoons on a Key Ring

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Mini Biscuit Pizzas

“What’s for dinner?”

The question many moms dread hearing! I make a weekly menu when I make my grocery list, but I don’t stick to it completely. I like to look in the refrigerator and see what items need used.

One day, I had 1/2 a bag of mozzarella cheese, and 1 cup of homemade spaghetti sauce. I had frozen the extra spaghetti sauce to use on homemade pizza. I didn’t take into account the hamburger, mushrooms, and herbs that were in the sauce. When I tried using one on a pizza I found I had to use two. That left me with an extra bag. I decided to make…

Mini Biscuit Pizzas

Biscuits

Spaghetti Sauce, 1 cup

Mozzarella Cheese, shredded

Parmesan Cheese, shredded

I baked homemade biscuits and put the spaghetti sauce on top. After I used up the mozzarella cheese, I added Parmesan cheese.Biscuits, spaghetti sauce and cheese

Since it was a hot day, I put them in the refrigerator and we warmed up a few at a time in the microwave. Mini Biscuit Pizzas

Look in your refrigerator before you decided what’s for dinner. Ask yourself, what needs used up?

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Green Bean Casserole Dinner

I shared earlier how I added meat to my favorite corn casserole and made a dinner out of it. I did it again with Green Bean Casserole.

Green Bean Casserole Dinner

1 can of green beans

1 large can of Chunky Cream of Mushroom Soup

1 large can of milk

1 large can of French Fried Onions or 2 small cans

1 can mushrooms or fresh mushrooms

7 ounces of noodles

1 pound hamburger

1 Tablespoon minced onion

Cook noodles according to directions. Cook hamburger with salt, pepper, and minced onion. Mix green beans, mushroom soup, milk, and mushrooms. Add hamburger and noodles. Bake at 350° for 30 minutes. Top with French Fried Onions and bake for 5 minutes.Green Bean Casserole Dinner

The casserole tasted great, but it made way too much for three people. Next time, instead of baking it in a 9″ X 13″ pan, I am going to make it in two smaller pans: 11″ X 17″ and 8″ X 8″. I will use only half of the large can of French Fried Onions, (or one small can), and freeze the second pan after it cools. I can top it with the onions when I warm it up.Big pan or 2 small ones.

 

Any ideas of what I can add to candied yams?

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