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Share your "wacky" savings ideas! - Page 3

post #41 of 51

I use the mesh bags from apples and onions as kitchen scrubbies.  They work great--and when one gets super nasty from a big job (like the turkey roaster,)  I just toss it without regret.

 

We have  a huge stack of napkins I made from a thrift store tablecloth.

 

I often buy clothes from the $.50 rack at the thrift store just for the fabric.  My son has several pairs of fleece lined corderoy pants that I've made from repurposed fabric.  His homemade pants are far warmer than what I could afford to buy--and they're fabulously funky!

 

 

 

post #42 of 51

 

Some great ideas!!

I started making my kids pj's. During the summer I found some soft flannel sheets for under a dollar that I am using to make their jammies out of. I also had 2 pairs of adult flannel pj pants that had torn, but I was able to reuse them and make pj pants for my kids. I also made some pj tops that are sort of patchwork and have a few different flannel prints on it so they can match multiple pairs of pj pants.

 

I have several cotton tops I am going to make simple summer shorts out of. It’s not very hard to make simple kids pants and shorts, I can barely follow a pattern (sometimes I don’t at all) and they hold up just fineJ

A parenting group I am in is having a :stuff” exchange/mno next week were we are bringing toys/books/clothing/etc that our kids no longer use. We get to declutter before the holiday and find some free 2nd hand x-mas gifts!!
 

Ok, I'm a very embarrassed to share this idea!! When we get invited to a birthday party I always try to stay late and help clean up, there is almost always lots of food left over and every time the host insist that we take some of it home. I feel like such a mooch, but I do help clean up!! Last time we came home with fruit salad, half a pizza, and some pretzels!! I struggle with staying within our grocery budget, so every bit counts, right!!

post #43 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nitenites View Post

Oooh! I've got one! I turn paper grocery bags inside out & use them for wrapping Christmas gifts. I have lots of ribbon from crafting, so I use it to tie & decorate the packages. So pretty under the tree. (And I reuse the ribbon year after year! Woot!) 

 

dakotablue, I have tried so many times in the past to use leftover veggies for soup, but it never turns out. Can you give more details? 


Nitenites - Love the idea of brown paper packages with ribbon under the tree! 50 Bonus Points for reusing the ribbon over and over--I have to try that!

post #44 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by *green*faery* View Post

 

Ok, I'm a very embarrassed to share this idea!! When we get invited to a birthday party I always try to stay late and help clean up, there is almost always lots of food left over and every time the host insist that we take some of it home. I feel like such a mooch, but I do help clean up!! Last time we came home with fruit salad, half a pizza, and some pretzels!! I struggle with staying within our grocery budget, so every bit counts, right!!


Uhm, that's every family gathering I've ever been to!!! I see nothing wrong with this. As long as you're not stashing it in secret or begging there's nothing wrong with accepting generosity. And, as someone that hosts things from time to time, it's a big help to keep things we won't eat out of my fridge!

post #45 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamallama View Post

I use the mesh bags from apples and onions as kitchen scrubbies.  They work great--and when one gets super nasty from a big job (like the turkey roaster,)  I just toss it without regret.

 

We have  a huge stack of napkins I made from a thrift store tablecloth.

 

I often buy clothes from the $.50 rack at the thrift store just for the fabric.  My son has several pairs of fleece lined corderoy pants that I've made from repurposed fabric.  His homemade pants are far warmer than what I could afford to buy--and they're fabulously funky!

 

 

 


Ok, I LOVE this idea of using the clearance rack clothes just for the fabric and can't believe that I didn't think of that!  Man, that's way cheaper than Joanns!  I am totally going to start doing that!
 

Or actually, even better, I think I might start snagging the free bags of clothes that people list on Freecycle for that!

 



Quote:
Originally Posted by *green*faery* View Post

 

 

Ok, I'm a very embarrassed to share this idea!! When we get invited to a birthday party I always try to stay late and help clean up, there is almost always lots of food left over and every time the host insist that we take some of it home. I feel like such a mooch, but I do help clean up!! Last time we came home with fruit salad, half a pizza, and some pretzels!! I struggle with staying within our grocery budget, so every bit counts, right!!



He He, that's one of the reasons I host thanksgiving is for the leftovers. 

post #46 of 51


Doesn't seem so wacky  to me - pretty standard (re-use old bathing towels in kitchen). I don't even bother to hem them :)

 

 I also re-purpose old shirts for dish-rags and cleaning rags. Every house should have a rag-bag. :)

Quote:
Originally Posted by EmsMom View Post

Alright, this one seems a little out there.  I had a fairly new towel that had developed a large hole right in the middle.  I cut the towel up into pieces roughly twice the size of a kitchen sponge, folded each piece in half and zig zag stiched around the edges and voila, a reusable kitchen sponge for washing dishes.  I preferred that size to dish clothes and because I had so many of them, each one got thrown in the laundry at the end of the day (or sooner!).  Washed in hot water.  Cheaper than a sponge, more sanitary than a sponge, and they lasted forever.  Even after I didn't use them for dishes anymore, I still use them for other jobs like cleaning the tub. 

post #47 of 51


After I mended the old pillow cases several times, I've "retired" them to gift-bag duty. They sit in my wardrobe and then I bring them out at X-mas and on birthdays for "wrapping".

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by celerydunk View Post

I love the idea of making drawstring bags for presents - wrapping paper is so wasteful!

 

post #48 of 51

The various drafts of my thesis kept my family in scrap paper and drawing paper for years . Only this year (5 years after thesis submission) have we finally used it all up.
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by edytais View Post


My dh takes paper from recycling bin home.  Only one side is printed on, the other is clean.  My kids draw and write all day long (homeschooled).  We recycle the paper this way and get it for free.  To my surprise, kids really don't care about back being printed already.  When they want to make something more special (gift etc) that is when they use new paper.

 

post #49 of 51

I hope I don't raise too many eyebrows with this idea, as by most standards, it's considered "wacky."  BUT - the last old towel we had got repurposed into family cloth.  I just cut it down to size and I toss them in with my son's diapers every other day or so. 

post #50 of 51

Not really "whacky" - but things I've done or do

 

Buy a chicken w/ gizzards inside - save up the livers in the freezer for chopped liver at a later date.

 

If a chicken or duck comes with feet & heads - save for soup or porridge. Same with fish heads.

 

Left-over rice = rice porridge for breakfast & fried rice for lunch the next day

 

Don't pour dressing on entire lettuce salad - let individuals dress their own portions. That way any left-over lettuce keeps better overnight to be used the next  day.

 

Go to the market late in the day/evening when the vendors are ready to go home - often you can get good bargains, although the produce might not be as pretty.

 

If buying from an owner-proprietor, try bargaining. Can you get something cheaper if you buy in bulk? Can you get a discount for cash?

 

Making your own yoghurt is cheaper than buying, especially if you use powdered milk instead of fresh.

 

Save bacon grease for gravy base when you want gravy but don't have other drippings. It's also nice *for a treat* to use it to grease a pan for fried eggs or scrambled eggs.

 

If someone you know smokes tobacco - the un-smoked tobacco shreds of a cigarette butt can be used as part of a pesticide. Soak the tobacco in warm water for a day (~1 part tobacco to 16 parts water) until light brown & add some dishwashing soap. Spray it on your plants.

 

Another good home-made not too poisonous pesticide -  1/8 castile soap, 1/4 rubbing alcohol,  5/8 water. Especially good against spider mites and scale.

 

 


Edited by skreader - 12/8/10 at 4:57am
post #51 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nitenites View Post

Oooh! I've got one! I turn paper grocery bags inside out & use them for wrapping Christmas gifts. I have lots of ribbon from crafting, so I use it to tie & decorate the packages. So pretty under the tree. (And I reuse the ribbon year after year! Woot!)



I do the same!

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