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boppy 10-16-2002 07:06 PM

A Frugal Tip

My mother went though the Depression Years. She said because everything was so tight and etc.. for an example..she said when a coat wore out they would turn that coat inside out and they would have a new to speak. Also..when the boys or men had a hole in the long sleeve shirts mom said they cut the long sleeve off and made a short sleeve shirt..

I have heard if you turn your clothes inside out when you put them in the Washer and Dryer..that the clothes last longer..

When I take out the contents of a plastic baggie or Freezer Baggie..If it is not too greasy or torn.. I wash it as I wash dishes . I re use them time and time again.. I rarely have to buy new ones.

I am hearing impaired and I have to use headphones to listen to TV..etc. so when the wires break in one side.. I just listen in the other side on my good ear.. Sometimes I have to turn the headphones backwards to get it on the proper ear..but it works..until I can get a new pair..I can buy some for $2 at the Dollar Store.

:cat: :heart: ;-)

nagymom 10-28-2002 04:29 AM

Boppy you have some great ideas here. My mom also reuses plastic bags, including bread wrappers. Her "Tupperware" is empty margarine and whipped topping bowls. ::-)::
She can recall times in their early marriage where money was so tight that for lunch she would make my dad biscuits from scratch to go with a bowl of cooked greens and that was lunch!

MrsRoseofShara 11-13-2002 01:47 AM

Here are some tips:

* Spray a clean rag with diluted fabric softener instead of using a dryer sheet.
* Add a fluffy, dry towel to the dryer. (The wet clothes will dry faster.)
* Put soap slivers into an onion mesh bag, then use like a puff.
* Use cheap dish soap to remove greasy stains on your laundry.
* Add a capful of vinegar to dishwater. (It helps fight grease.)
* Place 1 or 2 mothballs into your vacuum bag to help control fleas. (Cedar mothballs will leave a nicer scent in your room.)
* Mix a cheaper dry dog/cat food with a little bit of quality can food.
* If switching brands, do it gradually as it is not good for your pet to change suddenly.
* Make homemade pancakes with bits of apple and freeze the portions in freezer bags. The kids can heat them in the microwave before school. Be sure to wash and reuse the bags.
* If you can sew, remove a frayed collar from a man's dress shirt and sew it back on inside out for a fresh new look. Can be done with cuffs too.

:heart: (()) :heart:

ldyroper 11-13-2002 09:14 AM

depression times
My mom too grew up in the depression, and i remember her telling me when their shoe soles got holes in them, theyd cut pieces of cardboard to put in them. Never mind if the shoes were to small! And one year they had to move (they moved ALOT) to Wyoming to live with her aunt, so her Xmas gift was a suitcase. Which she needed to carry her clothes in. And thats all she got to take, was what would fit in the small suitcase. Wow, No wonder my folks were always really frugal, (they didnt need to be, Dad had a wonderful job). But the depression really instilled frugality into many. I feel so blessed and quilty at times for what I have. And I try to be frugal. I wash tin foil out, baggies, cut paper towels in half for napkins, buy off brand items, make and bake alot from scratch, etc...

cheriegirl 11-20-2002 07:46 PM

Thanks ladies for all the great frugal living tips!

CAGmomof2 12-09-2002 10:39 AM

Thank you all for the tips as well..
Thank you all for the tips as well..

CAFE 12-09-2002 01:05 PM

^^ ^^ I read somewhere on one of the sites I went to, to fold a piece of foil up (I tore off a piece about 13-15" long.) and throw in the dryer instead of a dryer sheet. IT WORKS!!!! I could not believe it, but it does work. Your clothes are soft, no static electricity. You can also use the foil over and over. ^^ ^^ My kids laughed at me, until they tried it. Now they are using foil also.
What will they come up with next. Cafe

MrsRoseofShara 12-10-2002 02:45 AM

Wow Cafe, great tip! Thanks. I'll try it. ::-)::

:heart: (()) :heart:

nagymom 12-10-2002 03:25 AM

What a great tip for the clothes dryer Cafe! I did laundry yesterday before I read it but have a small load to do today so I am going to give it a shot. Assuming of course that I HAVE aluminum foil--I heard someone asking this morning if we have any.

Thanks for a very valuable tip. I get sick of reaching into the cabinet for softener to find a near empty bottle. And that stuff isn't cheap even when you buy the cheaper brands.


Juliecc913 12-10-2002 12:11 PM

Thanks Cafe. I have a couple more loads of laundry to do and no fabric softener mix or sheets but I DO have aluminum foil. My kids are gonna think I'm crazy but what the heck!

MrsRoseofShara 12-11-2002 01:12 AM

Jayne, I mix my fabric softener half and half with vinegar. I used to use just plain vinegar because it's far cheaper. It works but didn't get the clothes quite as soft as I like them. I decided to buy a really cheap brand of softener and mix it half and half with the vinegar and it works beautifully. I have laundry to do today so I'm going to try the tin foil trick in the dryer. That is such a great idea.

:heart: (()) :heart:

nagymom 12-11-2002 01:46 PM

^^ ^^ Cafe I finally got around to trying the aluminum foil trick and all I can say is: NO MORE fabric softener for me! ^^ ^^ I love the smell of Tide and now I can smell it on my clothes even after drying because that foil tip worked fantastically well. I dried a load of whites (everything from undies to cable knit tights to towels) and there wasn't a hint of static in the entire load.

THANK YOU for that tip. I have since shared it with everyone in my e-mail address book, along with an invitation to visit the best webite on the Internet!^^


ajrsmom 12-11-2002 08:33 PM

How did you fold the foil? Did you roll it into a ball or into squares or ??

Wonder why this works? Anyone have any ideas as to why it does? HHHMMMM!!! :eek: :)

CAFE 12-12-2002 03:49 AM

::-):: I just tore off a big sheet of foil, (about 14"-15") long. I then folded it into a square. (about 4x4). You can use it over several times. When it starts falling apart, I replace with new.^^
I am still trying to figure out how and why it works.ROFLMAO

ajrsmom 12-12-2002 11:24 AM

Thanks ! Im going to give it a try too!! ::-)::

mom2-4 12-16-2002 10:18 AM

I can't wait to try this tomorrow, I'm not quite as amazed as to how it works, but as to who figured it out??

Oh well, it sure beats the price of fab softener, and I thought too, maybe you will be able to smell your detergent better.

And I bet the foil wont stick to clothing, at least if it does it will be much more noticeable than a dryer sheet, and you won't walk around with foil stuck to yourself.:-P::

MrsRoseofShara 12-16-2002 10:31 AM

I can just see trying to explain to someone as to why you have a 15" strip of foil stuck to the back of your sweater. ROFLMAO

mom2-4 12-16-2002 05:20 PM

Oh my gosh that is so funnyROFLMAO I was thinking more in the lines of my kids going to school with a piece of foil stuck to their back.ROFLMAO

MrsManiac 12-31-2002 01:18 PM

Hmmm....I don't use my dryer much, but will keep that in mind. I wonder how this was found out? I would be a bit scared to just toss tin foil into the dryer....

I love reading these tips! Some of them I've been doing for a while, but I always find a new one to try every time I check out the boards!!

My favorite is not wasting food. Seems obvious, but I shudder to think of all the meals I just tossed out, not knowing better lol! I now save everything--even stuff the kids leave on their plate(can be their lunch later in the week--just label and freeze). We're not big soup eaters, but I still save all the little odds and ends--makes a great "buffet" dinner! And afterwards, anything that can get composted, does! I even read a tip about poultry bones--after boiling all the meat off and making broth(of course;-) ) bake the bones until they're dry and white, smash them and add them to your flower beds.

I also wash baggies(ds's teacher probably thinks I'm nuts. I asked her to be sure his baggies come home with him lol). I make almost everything from scratch, and the things I don't I probably don't have a recipe for! I can and freeze lots of stuff from our garden in the summer. I wash most of our clothes in cold water(except dh's work clothes--ew!), and my clothes I can usually get away with skipping the soap and just using baking soda. They are usually not "dirty", just "worn". I hardly ever buy cleaning products--I use baking soda, vinegar, and bleach for just about everything.

MrsManiac 01-22-2003 10:21 AM

baby wipes
Since my neighbor just had her baby, I was thinking about this and haven't read it anywhere here, so here's a frugal tip for baby wipes.

Lots of people make their own using paper towels--I tried it and they were rotting before I could use them up. What I found worked better(especially since I use cloth diapers) is to buy a bunch of baby washcloths(a dozen or so, depending on how often you want to wash them.) Then use equal amount water, baby soap, and baby oil in a squirt bottle(like a sport-cap top). Just squirt and wipe. It's gentle on baby and costs just pennies! Also, buy a large box of cornstarch instead of talc(or the overpriced containers in the baby section!), and use plain old petroleum jelly instead of rash cream. My kids' pediatrician was surprised that I was using these things--she recommends them, btw, but was impressed that I actually was doing it. I told her I don't make a dr's salary and couldn't afford all the extras lol!

mariliz 02-01-2003 06:56 PM

fabric softener
I wonder how much I'd actually save using the foil idea. I generally buy whatever softener sheets that are cheapest with a coupon, and cut each one in half. I never have a problem with static, and our clothes come out just fine. I try to buy the 120 sheet boxes, so I'm getting 240 sheets. If I have really small loads (reds, for example) I'll cut a half sheet in half.

I've read that dryer sheets are hard on your dryer. Does anyone have the scoop on this, or is it just a story?

I tried pouring a little liquid softener on a rag, but found blue spots on my clothing, so I stopped doing that. Maybe I didn't dilute enough, or put too much on.

nagymom 02-02-2003 03:35 AM

mariliz many years ago when my mom bought a new clothes dryer, she was told that her warranty would be voided if she used dryer sheets. I don't recall the exact reason but think it had something to do with damaging the tub. At any rate she didn't use them for several years, until well after the warranty had run out.
Personally I HATE dryer sheets--they always seem to wind up in my laundry room floor where the users are more than happy to leave them. Therefore dryer sheets have been banned from my house! ::-)::


lily_of_the_valley 02-06-2003 08:29 AM

Here's a few of my tips
I have a swiffer wet that I got for a christmas gift. Instead of buying the refill cleaner, I cut a small three sided flap in the top (bottom ot the bottle, top when inserted in the mop) and refilled with diluted all purpose cleaner.

I rolled all of our spare pennies and had 10 bucks!

I also started to plan our meals out by the month so that I get better usage out of the food and it doesn't go to waste.

MrsManiac 02-06-2003 05:51 PM

I'm supposedly going to recieve a coupon for a free swiffer wet jet soon(I'll believe it when it gets here lol!). I was wondering if I could rig it and just refill it with vinegar and water? Thanks, lily--you're a genius!8-)

nagymom 02-10-2003 05:08 AM

Contest reminder!
The Organizing Your Ride Giveaway! You could win
this great car organizer just by posting your tips! How
organized is your vehicle? Do you know where your
owner's manual is? How about emergency items? Do
you have a blanket in your car in case of a breakdown
in cold weather? How about a simple box of tissues?

Contest runs through February 15th at midnight PST.
Post as many tips and hints as you like. U.S. and Canada
may enter. If you are OUTSIDE of the U.S. and Canada,
you may enter but will be subject to shipping costs should
you win.

leasmom 08-24-2003 09:08 PM

What's your best and wisest frugal tip?
Well, I'll start, I think mine would be as far as clothes go...I used to buy pajamas for dd but now I buy colorful and interesting big shirts that I usually can get as low as .25 cents. Dd loves them and feels much older since she's no longer in pink teddy bear pj's or anything. My second tip would be that I take t-shirts, halter-tops for dd and they become undershirts for winter. Her shorts become pj bottoms. That way I get my money's worth out of them.

If you had advice about frugalness, what would it be?

bettdev 08-25-2003 06:25 PM


My DD loves the big tees too! I don't think I've EVER bought her any nightgowns/pajamas. Even when she was a toddler, she was in t-shirts...and she's 12 now!


One thing I do when printing online coupons, is to use the back side of paper that I received in the mail, etc. It does not have to be new paper.......the c/o is only printed on one side!

AnnaInOhio 08-26-2003 03:52 AM

We take old sweatpants, cut off the legs and they become summer pj's. We also wear sweatpants in the winter to stay warm in the house, saving on heating by keeping the thermostat down a few knotches (sp?). All summer sweatpants have not been the thing to buy at the thrift stores so they've been on clearance for .50 cents. I usually buy 2-3 pairs a week so we have a good supply for this winter. I've also been buying my mil some so she can stay warm too.


bettdev 08-26-2003 08:12 AM

Hmmmmmmmmm...I need to check my closet....I think I have some sweatpants to cut off for my DD....Thanks Anna!^^

leasmom 08-26-2003 09:01 AM

Yeah, great ideal!
I never thought about that. I don't know what winter is like here in Pueblo. We'll just have to see. I was told it wasn't very cold, even reached 100's at times. But, maybe for that short period when it actually does get cold-LOL- we could do that. Thanks.

AnnaInOhio 08-26-2003 09:13 AM

No problem gals-

Sweats are just so comfy in the winter and in summer, as shorts when your just "bustin" around the house.


MrsManiac 08-26-2003 10:18 AM

Hehe--I can't cut off my old sweats...dh swipes them for garage rags lol!! Maybe I could just let him have the legs?

We wear warmer clothes in the winter, too. Last year the thermostat was set at 62--the only time it was a problem was when my mil visited. She likes it warmer. Though we bumped it up a bit on super-cold nights. I couldn't believe how much people's gas bills were compared to ours--and all because they couldn't just throw on a sweater!:confused:

Paige 08-26-2003 11:55 AM

how to refill a swifter cleaner container
okay ladies, i got this figured out. when your swifter bottle gets emptied get a screwdriver and pry off the lid. the inside of the lid has nubs that connects it to the bottle. you will gently break those nubs as you go around the bottle lid. the lid should screw off after breaking all the nubs. your lid will then have a flared edge. take a pair of scissors and cut that flare off so it will resemble a bottle cap. refill your bottle and screw the cap back on. This tip will save us BIG $$$.


bettdev 09-08-2003 07:17 PM

You can also refill those oil air freshners that plug into an outlet. Just pry out the "wick", refill it with scented oil, potpourri, or even cologne/perfume. snap the wick back in, and you're done!

leasmom 09-09-2003 06:48 AM

I've got one...
Someone-(sorry but I forgot just who)-posted on one of the boards that in order to keep fruit fresh and ready to use, put pineapple juice in a bowl and add the fruit. Well, I had veggies that needed to be ready-to-use for dd's lunches and I thought about putting salted water in a ziplock back and then adding the veggies. It worked out perfectly! I could take them out and they were preserved and there was no waste. I even put the salted water and veggies in little lunch containers and stacked them up in the fridge so all I had to do was grab them and throw them into dd's lunches.

At the end of the week I just used the rest, but it wasn't necessary because one of the containers with celery sticks for dd's lunches is over a week old and is still in perfect condition.

So, that's my tip!

ajrsmom 09-09-2003 10:06 AM

Yep, we do the sweats thing too. Last year, I hit the big sales after Thanksgiving and bought us new sweats BOGO. The old ones were added to the nightclothes wear. We all sleep in Tshirts as well. DS also likes thermal pjs and I found him to pairs at yard sales for 50 cents a pr. One thing I do like though....Hanes makes a great t-shirt sleepshirt. Ive had one for over 5 years and its just about worn out. Hate the thought of spending $20. to replace it though.

There is a cleaner from the Dollar Tree called AWESOME. One of DHs buddies recommended it. He says it will clean anything. It must work because this guy refuses to shop at dollar stores and only tried it because his mother insisted! I bought some and I will let you know how it works.


bettdev 09-10-2003 04:46 PM

I've seen the "Awesome " cleaner @ Dollar Tree and Dollar General, but have never tried it. Let me know if it's good stuff!

MrsManiac 09-11-2003 06:12 AM

Funny you all should mention AWESOME. My sister just recommended it to me over the weekend--I'm simply waiting for payday to make my trip to the dollar store lol!! She swears by it, and she's pretty picky(meaning: she'd never make her own cleaners lol!)

katrink1 09-11-2003 03:03 PM

I have a clorox wet jet mop and I refill the bottle with window cleaner (ammonia and water). I also cut up pieces of felt or fake chamis cloth to make reusable pads. This works great believe me, I have my own cleaning business and I use these all the time.

Sueanne 09-11-2003 06:33 PM

Been using Awesome for years. Best concentrate on the market for all household jobs. Can use full strenght or concentrated so lasts a long time. Appliances shine like new. Even countertops have a shine. Floors & tile come streak free. Real safe to use too. No Acids...No Bleach...No Ammonia..Non Flamable. If you see it in the store buy a few since they run out fast.

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