Saving Money and Weekly Update–July 23, 2017


I got a big bag of very ripe bananas for $2 at the store and had my most excellent helpers cut and bag them for the freezer.  We will make smoothies from them.  Each day that Jake stays with me I have him do one “helpful” chore and one “fun” chore.  This was definitely the fun one–he loved cutting with the knife!  Because it was a table knife, it was low-stress for me, as well.  After all, there is no wrong way to cut a banana chunk as long as it’s safe!!

I worked a lot this week.  Most of my family was gone until Thursday so I had the time to devote.  I also tried to do a few fun things with Patsy alone after Jake went home, so one evening I looked on the internet and found a blueberry patch that wasn’t far away and we went blueberry picking.  We got 4 lbs., and they were only $1/lb.  Sadly, the crop was almost gone, or we would have picked more.  I did freeze a few of them, and several baggies from our bush.  I harvested and froze a few more raspberries and some more Marion berries from our bushes.

I canned green beans.

I kept my niece and nephew all night last Sunday, and took them and Patsy to the zoo Monday, using my zoo pass.  I took food for us to eat at lunch, and clearly announced ahead of time what I was planning to buy for them (a shaved ice or a soda) and declared that if anyone wanted more, they should bring their own money.  It worked well.


They knew they were getting a treat, and could choose which they wanted, and it took away the anxiety for them.


As part of the summer reading program, we attended a Lego party at the library.  Jake was given a baggie of Legos to build with.  There were also tables where wheels, baseplates or specialty pieces could be procured.   After the kids finished building their creation, there was a librarian with a microphone and the child could describe what they built, and place their item in a place of honor on a table.


He enjoyed himself.



Another day, I took a stale loaf of cheap white bread, and let them feed the ducks at a park.  Imagine our surprise when some nutria showed up for their share!


There was 1 mama and 5 or 6 babies.


There was also a trip to a park one day.  You can’t beat the swings!  I noticed a splash pad there.  We might do that another day, when we are prepared with bathing suits.

I bought several items of clothing and shoes for the girls.  I don’t buy a ton of things at the beginning of the school year. Instead, I buy them things all year long when they need them.  It had been a long, long time since I had purchased shoes for them, so I was delighted to get the shoes they needed  off of the clearance rack, which worked out to at least 1/2 price.   Patsy got 3 tops for 1/2 off the lowest marked clearance price (gotta love Fred Meyers), and Ja’Ana got shorts and capris for around $12 each.  I was also able to get them each a p.j. set.  We are heading out for a mission trip before too long, and I wanted them to have something that was decent, matched, no holes,  fit well, etc. for the trip.  We will be sleeping in churches part of the time and at the mission compound, the restrooms are across  a courtyard, so they may be seen in these p.j.’s if they have to take a “walk” during the night.  The sale was excellent, so that helped.  I got them each a $2 pair of flip flops for showers, etc.  Rob got J a couple of skirts for the trip at Goodwill.  I still have a few things to get Patsy before school starts, but I think I’m about ready for the upcoming trip.


The garden is full of produce.  Early this morning, I slipped outside to pick a few beans for our family Sunday dinner, which I hosted today.  Well, one “bean” let to another, and I ended up with 2-1/2 gallon ziplock bags of yellow and green beans.  I gave 1 to my sister, we ate the 1/2, and my aunt and I quickly snapped, blanched and froze the other bag for her freezer.  Rob and I got 14 pints and  2 quarts frozen Thursday, so I didn’t need them.  She ended up with several one-cup portions.  It was great to find a use for them!  I also cut lettuce and picked a few cucumbers and snow peas.

It was a very busy week, but we got a lot done, which is awesome!


6 thoughts on “Saving Money and Weekly Update–July 23, 2017”

  1. Do you ever make the banana based ice cream? (The food processor variety?). My husband and I made some with frozen bananas and we enjoyed it.

    1. I never have made that. It sounds great. We use them in our little smoothie blender and just mix up endless smoothies with fruit, sometimes yogurt, sometimes almond or dairy mild, sometimes a little chocolate of some sort, sometimes a little agave nectar or sugar…..the combinations are endless, but often include bananas.

  2. You sure had a lot of frugal fun this week! I wish there were more free activities for kids around here. You have to pay to use the splash pad at a town about half an hour from us. I had heard it was supposed to be free, but they decided to charge to use it after all. 🙁 Our libraries do have a Summer Reading program, which is wonderful! YOu got a great deal on those bananas and I’m so glad you have such wonderful helpers to get them peeled, cut and frozen. I have to get some over-ripe bananas taken care of today also.

    Be blessed my friend!

    1. We don’t love living in town, because we are country people. So, I’ve been purposefully trying to take advantage of every “advantage” that town offers because this is where I live now. There are some things that are nice, like the amazing library activities–it’s such a huge library with lots going on. I’ve never seen a splash pad that charges money around here. I wonder if it’s because Oregon is such a wet, water-filled place usually, so water is not usually scarce??? Who knows. I just know it’s nice:)

  3. Great pictures! I love the bottom of the sneakers one! I am really having green bean envy now. 🙂

    My tomatoes are ripening so that I am getting a big handful daily. They are huge cherry tomatoes and so sweet and good. When our old garage fridge died several months ago our power bill dropped $25-30 a month! We saved up and bought a new one which was delivered Friday. Imagine my chagrin to see that it is expected to cost $43 a YEAR to run the new one. We have just been throwing money away. It is great to have the space to stock up again. Aldi had eggs for .29 a dozen so we bought 6 dozen and our favorite cheese was a dollar less than it usually is so we bought extra. Lidl is a real competitor so the prices have plummeted at Aldi and they passed out $5 off $30 coupons yesterday for the next four weeks. We are now on long term disability so our income is half. We will be very glad for those coupons! I will stock up on non perishable foods if need be to make the $30 total.

    We have a cash budget each month for eating out and dates. This is very important to my husband and so thankfully I was able to keep it when I redid the budget for our lowered income. At the end of each month any money that is left goes into an envelope for special things. We are heading out today for two nights getaway for hubby’s 60th birthday and that envelope is how we are paying for it. I am so glad we can do it!

    Have a good week!

    1. I love my envelopes, too? I’m glad you can get away. We don’t have either of those stores here, but it’s great you are benefitting from those price wars!!

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