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Sunday, 22 November 2015

On Being a Scrooge

Frugality - also known as Make Do And Mend

I have some nifty little frugal tricks, some of which I don't let out in public, but seeing as my family don't read my blog yet (that I am aware of) these things are safe on here and won't be one day added to my eulogy.



I have not managed to find my favourite tea other than in teabag form. The packaging and bags of this tea are fully biodegradable, so I feel better about that. However, I have discovered that I can get two uses out of each teabag - hence saving myself at least $50/year. The second cup is as good as the first. Anyone else that frugal? 

My next frugal trick has to do with those wretchedly expensive vacuum cleaner bags. In a previous post here I wrote about emptying and restitching them up, but recently I reclaimed a pack of bags from my daughter, whose vacuum cleaner has died. I was just going to donate them to a charity as they are not the same make as mine, but on closer inspection, the bags from my daughter had a cardboard backing. So I just traced around the plate on my bag to get the cardboard one to fit into my vacuum - hey presto, works perfectly. So from now on I will be looking in charity shops for discarded packs of bags which I can alter in this way.

Reclaimed bag marked out ready to cut to fit my vacuum cleaner


I can also happily state that after 14 months of not buying any clothes new (apart from underwear) I have embarked on my second round of buying no clothes at all for 12 months. So that includes no shoes, underwear, material. Although I will allow myself to buy recycled trims etc to work refashioning what I already have, and will allow for one purchase if I have a social emergency - ie really unexpected special event, but will hopefully manage without this.

And finally a make-do in the kitchen. Sometimes I can't believe that I have got to this age without knowing/ doing some things. So this is for anyone who hasn't tried this yet.

Pesto - made from all your garden greens



My basil crop is not large enough yet to make a full pesto from - requiring about 2 cups of leaves. Recently I read about someone who uses kale (remove the centre rib), silverbeet/chard, lettuce - or really whatever greens are available. So all of those went into my pesto, along with parsley and a little coriander and much less basil than usual. The result was scrumptious! Katie liked it even more than the standard basil version. I use cashews instead of pine nuts, which are so expensive.

If you already do these things, give yourself a 10/10 for frugality. 

9 comments:

  1. What a great tip for the pesto, I've never heard of that before!

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    1. Always happy to pass on a fabulous idea. Hope you love it too.

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  2. Yup, all my teabags get used twice, except green tea. A second cup from that bag tastes off, nothing like the first cup. What brand have you found that doesn't have plastic in the bags? The only one I've found is Yogi and it's rather expensive though I do buy it.
    Havent tried kale pesto but I will be doing that soon as my basil has pretty much run out. I use toasted walnuts instead of pine nuts. I think pine nuts are over rated anyway!

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    1. I drink Earl Grey green tea - which is a mix, maybe that's why it's still good second time around. I have two brands that are equally as good, Healtheries and Red Seal. I haven't found any of the teabags we use, even common ones, that have plastic in them - they all break down quickly with nothing left. We don't get Yogi here. I've been meaning to try walnuts in the pesto - they are so good for you.

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    2. Anne, the plastic fibers are there in the common teabags, at least here. The fibers are clear plastic, tiny and almost invisible, but most all of them have the plastic. I'll see if I can find you a couple links about it. If you soak the teabag well, then slowly pull apart a piece of it, you can sometimes see the plastic fibers as they don't tear.

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    3. Hmm, you could be right - I've dissected some - possibly there are plastic fibres there. I have started emptying the bags for the compost until further notice (having emailed the company). Strangely, immediately after I posted about my favourite, definitely biodegradable bags - they have taken them off the market! I'm going to have to start making my own loose tea mix.

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    4. Hmm, you could be right - I've dissected some - possibly there are plastic fibres there. I have started emptying the bags for the compost until further notice (having emailed the company). Strangely, immediately after I posted about my favourite, definitely biodegradable bags - they have taken them off the market! I'm going to have to start making my own loose tea mix.

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  3. Yep, thrifty here too. I reuse my tea bags and can get a few cups out of each.It grosses out a few friends but I have yet to figure out why.

    Great save on the vacuum bags. The bags used to be made of a thicker product and so I grew up watching my grandfather open the top of his bag, empty it, then staple it closed to use a couple of more times.

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    1. I'm happy that I'm in good company with my frugal ways.

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