Friday, January 11, 2008

Grocery, Shopping & More VI: Cheap Trix

This is just a list of a few ways to save money. I can't wait to see all of the additional ways you ladies know so I can add them to my repertoire:

Money Trix

Carry a calculator
Quickly figure out new prices with coupons applied to it
Calculate the unit price
Keep track of your grocery tab while shopping

Calculate the unit price
Just because something has the lowest price on the shelf does not mean it is the cheapest! Step one:Make sure you are looking at the same thing, what I mean is if one item is 20oz make sure the other is 20oz and not 15oz in a big bottle! If they are the same then you are comparing apples to apple if they are different then you need to move on to Step two: Divide the ounces by the price of the item to determine the unit price. This is one of the reasons I carry a calculator with me in the grocery store.

Use Vinegar
Buy this stuff by the gallon because you can use it all over your house and yard! Instead of having a variety of expensive cleaners, bug sprays etc....
My favorite use for vinegar is in my dishwasher where I use it instead of jet dry & once a month I send a cup full through the dishwasher to clean and disinfect it. Remember vinegar used to be an antibiotic in the olden days and it is still a pretty spiffy disinfectant!
Visit site for hundreds of uses of vinegar: uses of vinegar

Save butter bowls and yogurt cups
Don't buy expensive Tupperware to store your homemade mushrooms soup, broths etc...Recycle your plastic butter bowls and yogurt cups.

...laundry detergent, floor cleaner, ammonia, bleach everything you use! Do not estimate you are either wasting product by using too much or you are not cleaning effectively by using too little! So measure your way to savings!
(There is no need to buy measuring cups use old ones as they wear out, save laundry detergent dips or yogurt cups and mark the measurements with a sharpie.)

Rags to Riches
Buy rags at Wal-Mart and treat your paper towels like the gold standard. Use dirty rags to clean up spills on the floor. keep a few clean rags by the paper towels to remind dear husband (dh) to grab a rag for clean up instead of paper towel. I use paper towels for things like toilets, chicken blood and little faces (when I'm out of baby wash cloths).

We keep our thermostat at 78* during the summer and at 70* during the winter. If someone is coming to your house in the summer you will have to lower it so it remains comfortable with the addition of more bodies into your home. Also install a programmable thermostat to maximize your heating and's a website with more information: CPS Energy Thermostat Settings.

Saving Time with Cooking Trix

Cheap Lean Ground Beef
Rinse regular ground beef in a colander with water and let it dry.The fat washes away with the water. Place on paper towels to dry.

Chop and freeze veggies
You can chop and freeze a variety of veggies and store them in your freezer. These vegetables are to be used in cooked foods they cannot be used in things like fresh salads after having been frozen. A list of vegetables that can be frozen: onions, celery, carrots, bell peppers, cooked potatoes....
Once you have a bunch of pre-chopped frozen veggies in your freezer you will save hours a month in food preparation time. All I do is if I need some chopped celery I chop all of the celery right then, package, label & freeze it.

Pre-Cook Meats
Buy large amounts of ground beef (on sale) and brown 5-10# at a time. This saves lots of time with clean up, defrost, fry. When you need some ground beef just scoop out some of your flash frozen food!
Buy several chickens(on sale) and cook them at the same time (some night when you are having baked chicken (make 2-3 or more) then pull the meat off the chicken and freeze it 1/2 -1# baggies. Now you have saved an hour or more in cook time, clean up and baking! When you need some chicken just scoop out some of your flash frozen food!

save unused ends of vegetables
When you cut up onions, celery, carrots and other veggies you usually have the tops left. Get a gallon size bag and start freezing these bits and pieces and save them for making stock. These are perfect for stock because they are scooped out in the end and not eaten. After you scoop them out throw the veggies into your compost heap.

Use the McFood Pyramid

Take your biodegradable trash to your compost heap: coffee grinds, fruit rinds, egg shells, bits of vegetables etc...

Purchasing Trix
This is a list of places around town to get the best deal on the things we use....

They carry a dozen eggs for $1.05 and they have great meat sales. This month they have chuck roasts for $1.59 that is a wonderful price!

Cartridge World
Black HP cartridge refill $9.69 with tax. You hand them your empty and they hand you an already refilled cartridge. Also if you get their discount card you get a free cartridge after you have purchased 10. So that's like paying $8.69 for each of the other cartridges! They are right by Greene Eyes in the Tejas Shopping Center. Quick, easy & Cheap!

Sam's club
Buy the Spices, cheese & snacks

Yadi's Co-op
whole wheat pastry flour, organic oatmeal....

Brazos Feed & Supply:
Buy 4 bags and get one bag free (Kim saves $60 year on dog food and they keep track of it for you!) Right now they have a 40# bag of dog food for 10.49!They are on Texas Avenue just before you get to the McDonalds.

Finally, is anyone interested in homemaking book club? I would probably cover 1-2 of my favorite books in a year. So this means reading 1-2 chapters per month and discussing them on line. Let me know in the comments....

F.Y.I., I have posted this series of articles on Kim & my website "The Homemaker" if you need to review or print them this is a good place to go. WARNING: This is a free website controlled by and I am not responsible for the advertisements. I do not allow popup ads on my computer so I do not know what pops up! If anyone knows a Christian free website please let me know so I can transfer the information to the new site! I am also posting some of your comments as I have time on this site too!

Happy Homemaking!

......Rejoice for the King has come and is coming!


Kathryn, Michael and Alex said...

So can you just go into Rosenthals and buy something or do you have to call them?

I never heard of rinsing ground beef...what a great idea.

Carpio Family said...

Ok, i was wondering what meat place on ATM you buy at. I couldn't think of it. Also i have been doing the Freeze your veggie scraps for broth thing for 2 months now, and i love being able to not have to buy stock for 50 cent at the store. Plus when people are sick i have broth handy for chicken noodle soup. I also throw in the bones and little meat tidbit, you know the ones that are left from boiling chicken, this adds so much flavor. Then i just set it in the crock pot for a few hours and va-la i have delicious stock.
I also chop and freeze veggies at one time, i actually did that last night. It's easier to do this right as you get your groceries.

Anonymous said...

Hi there! I just found your blog and am enjoying it. I know a lot of $$ tricks, but you've given me a few more. Thanks!!!! Tammy

Three Little Monkeys said...


I would be interested in your homemaking book club!
Thank you for the tip on freezing the ground beef. I just bought a 5# pack and was going to freeze the remainder raw. Cooking it before hand sounds even better!


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