Frugal Endeavors – Wealth beyond counting


June 1 to June 15, 2017

Rest stop at Stanley Glacier

The last couple of weeks, The Man and I took a trip to Alberta to visit friends and family and to attend a wedding.  Travelling and being away from home always comes with a cost but I think we did a pretty good job of saving money.

We were blessed that family and friends feed us and gave us beds to sleep in during our trip. They also provided us with entertainment.

Our host works at the largest building in Calgary. She took us up to the top to see the views, which were spectacular.

Calgary from the top of the Bow.

I spent time with my oldest child. We went for coffee and then a long walk in the rain. We stopped at a local restaurant to warm up after the walk. He had breakfast but I stuck to water because I just couldn’t eat $9.00 porridge!

City life is expensive!

Staying with friends and family allowed us to save money on hotels and restaurant meals. The company can’t be beat and we are more than happy to return the favour should they make their way to British Columbia.

We both wore something we already owned to the wedding. This seemed to fit the general theme of the wedding. The invitations were sent by email. The event was held at a community hall and was catered by extended family. The bride spent less than $100 on her dress, which really suited her. The bride was beautiful and the groom radiated happiness. I think they are making a very good start to their married lives as they will not start it saddled by debt. I am hoping that frugal weddings that focus on relationships and the love between the couple will become a trend.

On the home front, our garden is growing like crazy due to the warmer weather and rain. I have been harvesting mint and rhubarb.

Mint and rhubarb from the garden

Keeping the Pantry Stocked

In the last couple of weeks, I added a batch of strawberry rhubarb jam, 7 half pints of stewed rhubarb, and I almost added a jar of mint extract to the pantry. There was an unfortunate accident and I broke the jar of steeping mint extract. I am hoping that the strong smell of mint will keep any ants out of that cupboard.

I made a jar of Apple Pie Pancake mix using dehydrated apples from last year’s apples.

Part of our trip involved a trip to Costco. I added many, many things to my pantry. I am hoping that I have enough sugar to last through canning season and enough condiments to make it through the zombie apocalypse.

I used one of my days off to work on a new garden bed that will the future home of my raspberries. Sometimes stocking your pantry starts with getting your hands dirty in anticipation of rewards that won’t be seen for years, but one day, I will have raspberry jelly in the pantry and frozen raspberries in my deep freeze.

I am working on a dedicated “Pantry Book” using a thrifted binder that will include my pantry and canning inventories as well as all my canning recipes.

Stash Busting

Purple bookmark

I made a bookmark from scraps from the purple quilt. I took it with me while I visited a lovely, lovely quilt store while I was in Calgary so that I could easily find coordinating fabric.

The bookmark was the only stash busting activity. I ended up engaging in “anti-stash busting” activities such as buying fabric at the quilt store but I only spent $20.00, which is pretty amazing!

I visited with an old friend. She asked if I would repair a quilt her husband received from Quilts of Valour, make an apron for her from a dress she bought over 30 years ago, and make a quilt for her from old handkerchiefs left behind by someone who is an important part of their family. All exciting projects and I am so honoured that she trusts me to preserve these memories for her.

I visited one of my favorite thrift stores while away and purchased two new pairs of shoes for work and a few other things including this book:

What a find. It’s like they knew I was coming.

I had a few holiday days remaining when I returned home and I tried to use them to my advantage. I made another batch of laundry detergent and fabric softener and I seasoned a couple of cast iron pots including the Dutch oven I found in our trailer. On our first night home from vacation, I made a casserole using bits and pieces from the pantry and freezer since the fridge was pretty bare from being away and we didn’t want to eat out.

I made $4 from returning bottles, line dried all my laundry including my thrift store purchases, and went thrifting with my youngest son who bought me a beautiful pair of hand knit wool socks for $0.50 – he really is a lovely boy.

Another amazing find. I can’t believe these unworn, hand knit wool socks were unwanted by someone.

Travelling always comes at a cost but the memories it creates are priceless. One of the most enduring souvenirs I brought home this trip is the realization that I am wealthy beyond description in terms of my family and friends.

How about you? Leave a comment and tell me about your frugal accomplishments this week. I love hearing from you!


8 thoughts on “Frugal Endeavors – Wealth beyond counting

  1. I was just interested in everything you had to say in this post. Apple pie pancake mix sounds amazing! Is the recipe on your blog? How wonderful to come home to rhubarb! I love it, too.
    I think a great thing about economizing in every day life is that it can make room in your budget for travels or other special times with family and friends.
    The purple bookmark is lovely and what a gift to be able to turn peoples special fabrics into a cherished item. My mom made me a quilt with my Dad’s flannel shirts when he passed.


  2. I love the little book you got. I had a whole slew of the booklets from WWll but they have all been lost through my myriad moves. Kind of sad about that, but there may be more out there! Love the wool socks – they must have been waiting just for you.


  3. I forgot to say that my frugal endeavor is I’ve started keeping track of the water I rescue before it goes down the drain. I’m averaging 2-3 gallons a day saved and I use it for cooking or drinking.


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