The Frugallery

A Gallery of Frugal & Fun Ideas!

Archive for the month “November, 2011”

Freebie–Book Giveaway!

Help us get 100 likes on our Facebook Page!  All fans will be entered in a drawing to win a free book, The Game of Life: How to Succeed in Real Life No Matter Where You Land.  Visit us at https://www.facebook.com/TheFrugallery and share this link with your friends!

Great Dollar Store Finds

Your local dollar store can be a great resource for budget-friendly purchases.  Keep in mind that even though each item is only $1, not every item is a good deal!  Many items come in smaller containers so the per unit price is actually higher than at a typical store.
Here are some items that can be purchased at dollar stores that are truly a great value.
1) Greeting Cards.  Many dollar stores often have 2/$1 deals on greeting cards, and they offer quite an assortment too!
2) Toothpaste.  Make sure you are getting a full-size container or the per ounce price is probably higher than a traditional store.  You may have to go to a less popular brand (AIM) to get a full size tube.  Many of the popular brands are available at dollar stores, albeit in a smaller tube.
3) Toothbrushes.  If you want name-brand, you can easily find an individual toothbrush for $1.  Often times you can get double-packs of the name-brand as well.  If you’re willing to go with an off-brand, don’t be surprised if you can get 3 or 4 for a buck!  Avoid the “8 packs” as they will be so cheaply made it will not be worth it in the long-run.
4) Mailing Supplies.  Many dollar stores sell bubblepack envelopes 2/$1.  This is less than half of what you would pay at a big-box store.
5) Coloring Books.  You may be surprised at the selection of popular character coloring books at your local dollar store.  The price will easily be half of what you would pay at most traditional stores.
What great dollar store finds have you found?

Good News for Lipitor Users

For 8.7 million Americans, today is a good day.  That is precisely how many people take Lipitor, a cholesterol reducing drug.  Today the profitable drugs patent expires, allowing it to be marketed as a generic for the first time ever.  Last year alone, Lipitor earned its maker Pfizer over $5 billion dollars.

 

For users, a generic version will cost up to half as much as the brand name version.  Considering its popularity amongst elderly users who are more likely to be on fixed incomes, this is welcome news.

 

To find out more, visit http://abcnews.go.com/Health/lipitor-generic-consumers-expect/story?id=15051397

Want to Save the World?

For those of you who may not be familiar, Dave Ramsey is a financial guru who teaches others in the form via television, radio, and books.  His “take charge” attitude gets right to the point and forces people to wake up and take action in their financial futures.

 

His recent blog post “The Secret That Changes the World” discusses what it really takes to make positive changes in the world and in your life.  If you are up for finding out the answer, visit the article at http://www.daveramsey.com/article/the-secret-word-that-changes-the-world/lifeandmoney_other.  It is a great article and worth reading!

How to Make Your Own Applesauce

Applesauce is a delicious snack that is also very nutritious.  But so many store bought types contain added sugar and preservatives.  Here is a recipe for home made applesauce that is easy to make, inexpensive, and delicious!

Peel and core a three pound bag of apples (between 8 & 9 apples).

Chop into small pieces and put into a crock pot.

Add 1/2 cups sugar.

Add 2 cups water.

Sprinkle in cinnamon (if you would like).

It will look like this:

Cook in the crock pot for 4-6 hours.  It will look similar to this:

Mash the apples with a potato masher or meat tenderizer.

Scoop out any excess water to create the consistency you like.

Add sugar or cinnamon to taste.

Put the final product in a jar and refrigerate!

Please share your experience if you try this recipe!

Where does your credit score come from?

Your credit score impacts numerous facets of your life, from where you live, what you drive, to how much it costs to get your electricity turned on. Despite the hold that credit has on all of us, few of us know how it is calculated.

Check out this great article by wofin.

http://wofin.wordpress.com/2011/11/15/factors-affecting-your-credit-score/

Wofin’s blog is filled with financial information and budget-saving ideas!

Space & Time Saving Tip for Freezing Meat

Do you like to stock up on meat when it’s on sale but don’t have the space in your freezer?  Or run out of time to defrost it?  Try this quick tip:

Put the meat into a baggie and flatten it down until it is no more than an inch thick.  You can also use non-freezer safe baggies and put numerous ones into one freezer safe bag.  (cheaper than using freezer bags for each serving)
This is a great way to freeze meat because it defrosts very quickly (because it is so thin).  Put the baggie into the sink with hot water and this will defrost in just a few minutes.  These take up much less room in the freezer than “bricks” of meat.  They can stack easily on top of each other and between boxes.
 
Give it a try!

Budget Buster: Sneaky Bank Fees!

Switching banks can really be a pain, but it can be worth it if your bank is charging you crazy fees!  Check out this article to see who the culprits are.

http://money.msn.com/saving-money/article.aspx?post=97be449b-145d-47ff-88a9-b6b66c0408bf

Then visit BankRate and watch a short video on how to avoid these fees.  I switched to an online bank a year ago (ING Direct) and haven’t looked back!

 

One Minute Microwave Chocolate Cake

Check out this great recipe from the Cupcake Diaries:

One Minute Microwave Chocolate Cake.

I cannot wait to try it!

Make Your Own Laundry Detergent

I’ve been making my own laundry detergent for years.  I’ll share with you the recipe.  Give it a try, it’s amazingly simple & one batch lasts a long time!

What you need:  Borax, Washing Soda, bar soap, a cheese grater, a storage container, and a spare scoop.  I’ve been able to find these products easily in stores.  Smaller grocery stores may not have the washing soda-it tends to be the more difficult to find.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Use the cheese grater to grate the bar soap.  My grater does not have a “fine” option, although I’ve never had a problem with larger slivers of soap.  Add in two parts soap, one part borax, and one part washing soda.  Use two tablespoons per  load.

This is what the final product looks like:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I found all of the ingredients at Wal-Mart.  But here are some links to where the items can be purchased online.

Borax: Found at Wal-Mart for $2.98 for a 76 oz. box ($.32 per cup)

http://www.walmart.com/ip/20-Mule-Team-Borax-Horizontal-Laundry-Booster-76-oz/11027366

Washing Soda: Found at Wal-Mart for $2.98 for a 55 oz. box ($.43 per cup).  Below is a link to the least expensive online option I could find.

http://www.alice.com/products/1264075?p=1264075&&source=google

Bar Soap: I prefer Dial which can be found at Wal-Mart for $3.98 for 8 bars. ($.50 per cup)

http://www.walmart.com/ip/Dial-Bar-Clean-And-Refresh-White-Antibacterial-Deodorant-Soap-Bars-4-oz-8-ct/10290825

 

How do the costs stack up?

The above recipe costs FIVE AND A HALF CENTS per load (assuming you use two tablespoons).

I found a large box of Tide Powder on Amazon.com for $33 including shipping.  This was enough detergent for 80 loads of laundry.  This equates to $.41 per load.

If you do ten loads a week, your savings is $3.55 per week! 

I especially like this detergent because besides cleaning well, it does not contain any dyes or perfumes (unless you add in scented soap).  The only downside I have found is the box of Borax is larger than the box of Washing Soda so I run out of them at different times.  I’ve also added a little OxyClean to a load if I’m concerned about colors.

Give it a try–I’d love to hear your opinions!

 

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