This is a go-to favorite in our family. It’s made of nothing but canned veggies, broth & herbs. It could not be simpler! You’ll be surprised at how DELICIOUS it is! It costs just a few dollars for a GIANT crockpot full, and it is so healthy! I make it healthier by always draining and rinsing my canned veggies to remove the excess sodium.
This is a go-to favorite in our family. It's made of nothing but canned veggies, broth & herbs. It could not be simpler! You'll be surprised at how DELICIOUS it is! It costs just a few dollars for a GIANT crockpot full, and it is so healthy! I make it healthier by always draining and rinsing my canned veggies (except tomatoes) to remove the excess sodium.
1 Carton Vegetable Stock
1 Can Diced Tomatoes
1 Can Corn
1 Can Green Beans
1 Can Carrots
1 Can Kidney Beans
1 Can Mixed Vegetables
About 1 Teaspoon of Each of These Spices: Garlic Powder, Onion Powder, Dried Minced Onion, Paprika, Pepper, Basil, Oregano, Chili Powder
Pour veggie stock into crockpot.
Add canned tomatoes with their juices.
Open all remaining cans. Drain liquid. Rinse with cold water. Drain again. Add to crockpot.
Well, it’s official… I’m crushing on Bruschetta! And it all started because my husband brought home a cheap, one-dollar, day-old baguette from the store and I just couldn’t let it go to waste. I looked through my pantry and found everything I needed for a quick Bruschetta.
Here’s the recipe, and my video on how I made it.
Colloidal oatmeal is a soothing addition to baths for the treatment of eczema, rashes, and other skin irritations. To put it simply, colloidal oatmeal is nothing more than VERY finely-ground oatmeal. So then why is it so expensive?! It doesn’t have to be if you DIY it! 🙂
Both of my little guys suffer from really bad eczema, especially in the cold, dry winter like what we’re having now. We have prescription meds to treat the problem, but whenever possible, I prefer to go the natural, homeopathic route first.
We’ve bought Aveeno Colloidal Oatmeal Bath Treatment for Eczema, but at around $10 a pop per box, and using at least one box per week per kiddo, think about that… It adds up to around $80 per month! This just will not do! I’m all about doing what’s best for my kids, but you know me…I’m also all about saving money.
Sooooo…I decided to make my own colloidal oatmeal treatment, just like Aveeno.
But get this…mine is only about 7 cents per treatment, or $4 PER MONTH!! How’s that for savings?
Add 1-2 cups of oats at a time into food processor and grind for several minutes until the oatmeal is a very fine powder. The finer the powder, the better it is for a bath, as it dissolves very easily in water and won’t leave large chunks on your skin and hair.
Once it is a very fine powder, transfer to a jar or plastic bag and store in a cool, dry place.
You’ll notice that the finely-ground oatmeal smells EXACTLY like the expensive Aveeno (but ours is DIRT CHEAP, so that makes it smell way, WAY better!) 🙂
There are a lot of blog posts out there with money saving ideas. But this blog post is different because it has ideas you probably won’t see anywhere else, because, let’s just say they’re a little bit unique.
My husband and I do all of the things on this list, except that we are no longer a 1-car family. We now own two cars outright that we paid cash for.
What we discovered in our savings journey, is that the things we do to save money have really ended up making us better people and more conscious consumers along the way. We leave a much smaller footprint as we go through life because we reduce, reuse, recycle, and make do.
1. Use single-ply toilet paper.
You know, the thin stuff that nobody wants to buy. Not only does it last forever on the roll, but it’s biodegradable and environmentally friendly. I only have to buy toilet paper about twice a year. I just can’t bring myself to spend more money on something I wipe my bum with than I do on the clothing I wear.
4. Become a 1-car family.
This isn’t for everyone, but you can make it work. We did. By becoming a one car family, we were able to save hundreds of dollars on car payments, insurance, gas and maintenance. We did this at a time when we were both working full time, on opposite sides of town, and I had a middle-schooler who I had to drive out of our school district each day. It took planning. But it was so worth it. Eliminating that revolving payment from our debt-to-income ratio allowed us to buy our dream home.
5. Sell your stuff.
In our efforts to save money for a house, I sold my tanning bed, my car, my stash of Louis Vuitton bags, jewelry, clothing, shoes, and more. Yeah…I USED to be high-maintenance in my former life (not anymore!!) Never once have I looked at my home and thought, “This place sure is nice, but I wish I had my stuff back.”
6. Accept hand-me-downs with a grateful heart.
I love it when friends and family bring me a bag full of toddler clothes that their kids have outgrown, or when my friend gives me a sweater she no longer wears. I’m so thankful that people are thoughtful enough to bless me with their awesome stuff that’s new-to-us.
7. Do your own nails always, always, always.
It costs about $45 for a spa pedicure where I lived. I can buy 45 bottles of nail polish at Dollar Tree for that amount! I can buy everything needed to give myself my own pedi for about $3, AND I get the added bonus that I know where my pedi tools have been, and that they’re clean.
8. Go fishing.
We LOVE to fish, and it’s a super cheap way to stock your freezer with wild-caught, healthy protein. There are very little up-front costs. A yearly fishing license is about $19, and you can find cheap or free fishing poles at garage sales and on Craigslist. There’s a ton of free bait crawling around in the dirt right now, and even if you purchase it, it’s pretty darn cheap.
9. Say yes to free meals.
The parents invite us for dinner? Yes please! Church fellowship potluck? Uh-huh! Give a work presentation with lunch catored in? Sign me up! A volunteer opportunity with free lunch for the helpers? Ok!! Saying yes to these commitments makes us better people and there’s the added perk of saving us money on food.
10. Shop at Goodwill, thrift stores, and Craigslist.
Even though we’re in a financially happy place, years of being frugal has caused me to have a severe aversion to paying more than $3 for a shirt. I buy ALL my cute pajama sets at Goodwill for under $4 and wouldn’t have it any other way.
I hope these ideas help to bring you financial peace!
For more of my money saving ideas, you can check out THIS blog post …… And THIS one! 🙂
If you like my frugal meal plan series, you’ll LOVE my Ebook! 1 Month of Dirt Cheap Dinners brings you an entire month of easy, frugal & delicious recipes, along with meal plans and shopping lists! Best part, it’s only $1.99!
Welcome to WEEK 2 in my money-saving meals series! Be sure to check out the rest of the series, too! WEEK 1 Here … WEEK 3 Here
We live on a budget to help bring us closer to achieving our dream of being completely debt free! 🙂
We feed our entire family on a budget of less than $250 per MONTH! Our average shopping trip is around $60 per week. We shop one time per week ONLY, either on Saturdays or Sundays.
This is less than what most people spend in a week!
This is based on a family of 4. This includes 7 dinners and 7 breakfasts for us all, plus lunches all week for 1-2 adults (since the entire family isn’t always home during the day).
These calculations assume that you do already have some basics stocked in your pantry, like seasonings, oil, butter, etc. Also, it doesn’t figure in the things I buy in bulk and stockpile, like canned veggies, because I only buy those 1-2 times per year when I can get them on sale (and combine with coupons) for about 20 cents per can. We also can, vaccum-seal and freeze tons of our own garden veggies in the summer and eat them all year long. I’m giving you main dish ideas, but I usually also add a veggie for a side dish, which is “free” for me because they come from our garden or stockpile. And then there’s the bonus that the hubby likes to fish, and we usually have fish in the freezer when his outings are successful. Told ya were frugal! 🙂
To simplify dinner planning, I’m going by this guideline:
-Meatless Monday…eliminating meat one day a week saves money!
-Tortilla Tuesday…because everything tastes better in a tortilla.
-Web Wednesday…every Wednesday, a new recipe from the web that I’ve been wanting to try.
-Throwback Thursday…some of our favorite old-school recipes from our favorite little old ladies.
-Fancy Friday…I try to make something a little special on Friday nights, as a way to ring in the weekend, since we usually stay in.
-Sandwich Saturday…Saturdays are the perfect day for sandwiches, and maybe some soup with it!
-Slow Cooker Sunday…hey, Sunday is the “day of rest”… And it doesn’t get more restful than letting your crockpot do all the work for you!
~~Our breakfast options this week, based on our shopping list, are:
Cereal, Greek yogurt (a few left from last week), toast, eggs, omelets, protein bars & meal replacement shakes (a few left from last week)
~~Lunch options this week will be mainly left overs, because the dishes I’m making actually make quite a bit.
**Here’s my shopping list, and the prices I paid. I shop at Aldi.
Red pepper .79
Green onions 1.00
Frozen Chicken breast (bag) 6.49
Frozen mixed veg (peas & carrots) 1.09
Frozen broccoli 1.09
Frozen salmon 2.99
Egg noodles 1.29
Pane Italian bread 3.79
Sour cream 1.29
2 cans biscuits .99×2
Pickle spears 1.49
Green olives 1.19
Canned chili WITH beans 1.29
Refried beans .79
1 can chicken 1.79
Minced garlic in a jar 1.99
Aldi version of Oreos 1.69
TOTAL = $48.90
—Main courses for our dinners this week will be:
**Click on the links for the recipes!
A bonus this week…Included in the money I spent, I’m also going to do something fun and special Saturday morning. I’m going to make my favorite gooey Vanilla-Orange Monkey Bread and have a Bloody Mary Bar (IDEAS HERE) for Dr. B and myself before we go do something fun for the day. I think that sounds like the perfect way to start the day…and his vacation (or should I say, “Stay-cation”). He’ll be off work all week to work on my Honey-D0 List! Yay!
I hope this post helps you with your meal planning this week, and helps you make your money-saving goals!
Going to garage sales is a favorite weekend pastime for Dr. B and me. We love packing the kids up in the van, getting some good coffee, and heading out on a treasure hunt.
We’re always searching for antique vintage items that fit into my vintage home decor theme. My husband likes to find fishing gear, tools, and outdoor gear. We also are always on the hunt for baby gear bargains.
Some weekends we have very little luck, and some weekends we score so big it gives us a high that lasts all weekend. THIS would be one of those times!
We went to four sales, and found treasures at all but one of them.
Here’s what we found, for a total of just $25!! 🙂 Yay!!
6 antique Ball jars, some with original lids, and even an original seal. I have an ever-growing Ball jar collection, and the teal jars are my favorite. Some of these babies are worth a lot of money, but I’ve never paid more than a few bucks for any of mine. My dear husband spotted these, and scored them ALL for only $11 total. Way to go, Honey!! 🙂
4 antique cast iron skillets. If you are a foodie like me, then you know how awesome it is to cook on an old cast iron skillet. I’m always on the hunt for these, but I never buy them because they’re soooooo EXPENSIVE! Not today, my friends! We got all four of these small skillets for $2 each. They’re worth way, way more than that. And I can’t wait to make some Chocolate Chip Skillet Cookies, or fry up some Breakfast Shipwrecks in these. 🙂
Antique porcelain kitchen strainer. $2. I am in love with all the items I found this weekend, but I think this MAY be my favorite. This strainer makes my heart beat fast. Lol. It fits so completely perfectly in my farmhouse chic, vintage kitchen. This sweet little 100 year old strainer was all sad and lonely sitting in a cardboard box in someone’s barn, just WAITING for me to find her, clean her up, and take her home with me to be loved again.
Antique mini Fire King baking dish with lid. This was only $1, and so worth the money. Not only is it cute, but it is very useful. I will be using it to make single serving portions of casseroles, etc, for my teenage son. He doesn’t like some of the things I put into my casseroles, like celery and large chunks of tomatoes and veggies. So, I will use this to make him his own portions sans the stuff he dislikes.
Nevco retro vintage metal bowl from South Africa. I’m a sucker for cool, pretty, unique bowls. This one fits the bill, and at only $1, how could I leave without it? This bowl is just lovely. I’ve never seen anything like it. The bright colors are so pretty. I don’t have a plan in mind for this bowl, but it was just too pretty to pass up (this is the borderline hoarder in me talking).
Antique porcelain pitcher. I love this almost as much as the porcelain strainer. It was $2, and it has red in it, which is my main accent color. Unfortunately, it has some rust and a hole in the bottom, so it can’t actually be used as a pitcher anymore, but it will make an awesome planter! The hole makes for perfect drainage!
I love breathing new life into antiques. And I love the past that they’ve already lived. I love imagining all the hands that have touched them, and the clothes those people were wearing, and what foods they may have been cooking. And I love getting these items at bargain prices! I still can’t believe we only spent $25! I can’t wait until our next garage sale outing, but the bar has been set pretty high after this trip. 🙂
What are your favorite garage sale finds? Share with us!
I don’t splurge often, I really don’t. But when I do, it is on things in life that make me really super happy and brighten my day. Bath & Body Works Hand Soaps definitely do this, every time I wash my hands…which is a lot when there are 2 dirty bottoms that need constant diaper changes! 🙂
These soaps smell SOOOO GOOD! People even notice it when I walk by. I get told, “Wow, you smell good!” and I wave my hands in front on their face… It’s just the soap! 🙂
I love the price of these soaps, and that’s one reason I don’t feel bad about splurging on them. I can stock up on these for CHEAP, because Bath & Body Works has awesome sales PLUS coupons you can use during the sale. You can usually get them for a “6 for $20” deal, plus you can always count on taking a few more dollars off with coupons.
One secret tip I’ve learned: the salespeople keep a little keychain with ALL their current coupons behind the counter, so if you accidentally left your coupon at home, you can just tell them which one it was and they’ll scan it and give you credit! Awesome customer service, huh?
I’ve never met a Bath & Body Works soap that I didn’t like! 🙂
We all know that Aldi offers us the best prices on our groceries. But, did you know that Aldi also has a photo service? Yep, it’s simply called, “Aldi Photo Service.” They have the best prices I’ve seen on photo books, posters and canvases, greeting cards, photo gifts, calendars, and SO MUCH MORE!!!
And right now, if you sign up they’re offering you 50 FREE 4×6 prints as a way of saying, “Thank you!” (as if their prices aren’t awesome enough!?) 🙂
If you like my frugal food tips, you’ll LOVE my Ebook! 1 Month of Dirt Cheap Dinners brings you an entire month of easy, frugal & delicious recipes, along with meal plans and shopping lists! Best part, it’s only $1.99!
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day!
Here are 7 really yummy breakfast options that cost just pennies per serving!
All of these items came from Aldi. Yay for Aldi! 🙂
1. Toasted English muffin with peanut butter. This filling breakfast comes in at ONLY 27 cents per serving!