Friday, March 24, 2006

Friday "Frugal and Free" File

How has this week been a frugal one? Let me count the ways:

1. J arrived for Monday night craft night with a large pumpkin under one arm (the pumpkin patch is no more - she decided she wanted her back yard back). And these under the other arm: Yay! Grainwaves especially and personally imported from New Zealand. Twenty little packets of the darlings. I shall have a happy Kiwi puku* for at least the next month.

And speaking of happy pukus, after Julie made up a batch of pumpkin soup with some of the pumpkin (leaving 1/3 for K to take home and 1/3 for me to pop in the fridge) and I whipped up a batch of cheese and parsley scones we all had very happy pukus!
2. There are certain things I basically refuse to pay full price for in the grocery department: tuna, crumpets, cat food and washing power. Coles had Drive on sale at less than half price this week. Last time they did this was back in September and I panicked that it was going off the market and bought ten 2 kilo boxes.

This time round I just figured they do the major discount about every 6 months so just topped the pile up. Saved over $30 which was pretty good. I also stocked up on discounted cat food for The Fluffmeister.3. A, JC and I had planned to get together for Librarian gossip and wine this week. They suggested Zefferelli's (a local very cheap pizza/ pasta place with appalling service and so-so food). I suggested my place.

A is off to Italy with her family just after I head to The USA so I made an Italian themed dinner with stuffed canneloni, Mediterranean salad, crusty Italian bread with olive oil and balsamic vinegar for dipping and a very large bottle of Italian plonk.

JC brought a bunch of beautiful roses with her as well and a bag full of strawberries and melting chocolate to have for dessert.

A brought more strawberries (with cream and a flake bar to crumble over the top) plus pre dinner snacks and a bottle of bubbles. There was way too much food for three of us.

Which meant my fridge looked like this this morning:Salad on the right to take to work for lunch along with the rest of the bread and a tin of tuna. Yummy leftover dip. Some blue brie. A punnet of strawberries and cream to go with them (if I don't feel like remelting the slab of chocolate in the jug you can't see). And the unopened bottle of bubbles.

4. So for breakfast this morning I had pancakes I'd bought half price ages ago and frozen (needed to make room in the freezer for the canneloni, didn't I?) with yoghurt and some of the strawberries...After breakfast I went to check the post box and there was good and unexpected stuff in there. 5. First up an interesting looking parcel from Sis which contained a beautiful scarf she'd bought me when she was in Asia. If you look at the picture very closely you can just see that it actually has daisy patterns woven into the main part of it! I just have to get the cheap cruise now as this would be perfect to wear on formal night with a plain long black skirt and black top. Thank you thank you thank you oh Sister With Wonderful Taste!

But wait! There's more wonderfulness: a black and white hugging salt and pepper shaker set which is very very cute but a little weird as it would appear the salt and pepper come out their noses and eyes... I'm wondering if it would be too anal to have a shaker of sugar and cinnamon for winter cinnamon toast eating frenzies because these would be perfect.

6. Also in the mail a subscription renewal notice from Madison. Saying as I was a founding subscriber they'll renew my subscription for around half the price it would cost to buy it from the newsagents. (This is where I need to explain for my American readers how subscribing works in the rest of the world. Unlike The USA where you get a magazine almost free when you subscribe here you're lucky to save 10% on the cover price when you subscribe. And if you order subscriptions to UK magazines it works out more expensive than buying the magazine at the newsagents because they expect you to pay for the cost of posting it to you...)7. Lovely T at work is being very very generous in so many ways. I mentioned I wanted to look for a second hand toaster over because I wanted to try making daisy Shrinky Dink pins. And she said she had one in her garage I could have. I bought some black and white stripy interlock fabric from the op shop round the corner for $2 and she offered to sew it into a shirt for me when it became obvious it would be my first trial at sewing stretch fabric.

And when my wool flannel finally arrived to make the inner of the needle book I want to make and I decided I needed pinking shears to do the edges, who happened to have a spare pair I could borrow so I didn't have to buy any?

T, you're a star!8. Speaking of borrowing, J has a staple gun she's going to lend me this weekend to recover the garage sale armchair. I popped into Lincraft at lunchtime and they were having a 30% off sale so I got a piece of fabric to cover the seat for a whole $4.20. Excellent - this means the whole armchair will have cost me under $20.9. After worrying that I wouldn't have enough mohair to finish The Jumper Based on a True Pattern, I discovered I had enough left over to make a scarf. Which I'm doing as a procrastination exercise so I don't have to sew TJBOATP up and knit the neckline.

The only problem is that it's looking a little too much like a Collingwood scarf. So I'm thinking I could be super clever and list it on eBay. If it sells it would cover the cost of the wool and therefore TJBOATP would be FREE. And if it doesn't sell I'll just have to banish footy thoughts from my mind as I wear it.

10. I've just joined "Use what you "month for April. Check out the button on the right.

(Soundtrack: Dub combinations)


(*Maori for stomach in case you hadn't guessed by now)

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