5 Frugal Things – Homemade Gifts, Equipment Repair, Too Many Eggs, etc

by Texas Homesteader ~ 

Summer is surely here, y’all. It’s HOT outside. So we’re mindful to get as many of our outside chores complete in the early hours as we can. And we take lots of breaks, drink lots of cold water and stay hydrated.

Since our budget is so tight, we’re always on the lookout for doing little things on a regular basis that saves us some money. Are you looking to incorporate some money-saving steps in your own days?

Well here’s 5 frugal things we did this week to save some cold, hard, cash.

5 Frugal Things to save money this week. Equipment repair, homemade gift, repurposing, mindful cooking #TexasHomesteader

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5 Frugal Things this week to save money - eliminating food waste, homemade gift, saving money on equipment repair and MORE! #TexasHomesteader

1. Hot Weather Cooking

As I mentioned, it’s hot outside y’all. So I’ve pulled all my Hot-Weather Cooking hacks out of the bag. 

For instance I brew our tea outside by making Sun Tea. I have an hourglass jar that I use. I mean, it’s hot outside, might as well put that heat to good use!

Sun Tea - quick to brew using the power of the sun whether winter or summer. A delicious, healthy and trash free beverage. #TexasHomesteader

I’m also doing all of my baking outside. Years ago I bought a  *Solar Oven and I use it all year long, but especially in the summer months.

This week I decided I wanted to make meatloaf. Using my Cook-Once, Eat-Twice method of cooking I mixed up not one but TWO pans of meatloaf. They turned out deliciously!

We enjoyed that homemade meatloaf for supper that first night. I added some cooler sides, such as raw carrots, some marinated cucumber/tomato salad and some lightly-warmed leftover corn/peas.

5 Frugal Things - homemade meatloaf meal with carrots, corn and peas, and marinated tomato cucumber salad. #TexasHomesteader

Since I’d made two meatloaves I put a couple of thick slabs back for RancherMan’s meatloaf sandwiches enjoyed between slices of my homemade Honey-Oat Sandwich Bread. It’s a favorite next-day lunch for him.

Then I portioned out another section of the leftover meatloaf to use as the filling in my Lazy Cook’s Chile Relleno. (Which I also baked outside in my solar oven.)

Finally, I froze the extra meatloaf slabs and chile relleno cups in supper-sized servings. So we have heat-n-eat convenient homemade meals in future weeks. Hey, it’s one of my most used time-saving tips on being able to Serve Homemade Meals Daily The EASY Way!

2. Insurance Review

Everyone knows it’s a good idea to periodically review your insurance coverage, premiums, etc.

So we contacted our agent and asked to meet with him. He met us in our home and we all sat down at our dining room table to look over our insurance coverage/premiums.

I offered him some icy cold sun tea and some delicious 3-Ingredient Peanut Butter Cookies as we chatted casually.

3 Ingredient Peanut Butter Cookies are quick & easy to make. #TexasHomesteader

As it turned out, there was some equipment we no longer owned that we’d never removed from our policy. We removed them to save money on our premium.

We also made a few tweaks on various deductibles, and we asked for quotes for a couple of inexpensive coverage options that make more sense as RancherMan & I make plans for our golden years. So we’re just adjusting our coverages to better suit our current or future needs.

I’ve written before asking Are You Getting What You Paid For? (Or Paying More For Nothing?) This is important, y’all.

5 Frugal Things to save money this week. #TexasHomesteader

It’s true, just paying blindly for years on end without any sort of review is almost certainly a recipe for paying more than you should. And why should you be paying more than the next guy even though you’re both receiving the exact same product?

It’s an important part of your financial health to review things from time to time.

3. Simple Lawn Mower Repair

Recently while RancherMan was mowing our yard using our riding lawnmower, it suddenly bogged down & died. RancherMan could never get it to restart.

So he did some research (he’s the research KING) and discovered it was probably the solenoid. He ordered part on Amazon for only $14 to easily repair it.

Because we’re members of Amazon Prime he got that part delivered to our home the very next day. 

NOTE: If you don’t already have it, you can totally *Try Amazon Prime For FREE for 30 days. Then place your order & get your free shipping, etc. Keep prime for 30 days FOR FREE & try it out – streaming movies, music, free shipping – the whole 9 yards! If you don’t want to continue you can cancel within 30 days and pay nothing for the Amazon Prime membership. But you’ll probably want it anyway – we’ve gotten lots of use from our Amazon Prime by streaming videos & TV shows, streaming music, free next day shipping option on many items, etc.

If he’d had to send it off to a repair shop he would have been out all that time not being able to use the mower while it was in the shop. And he’d also have to load the broken mower up and drive it to the repair shop, wait for it to be fixed, then drive back to the repair shop to pick it up & bring it home.

As it stands our riding mower was fixed within 24 hours – using only 45 minutes of his time & $14 of his money. Win/win, y’all!

4. Planning Eliminates Food Waste

Y’all know how much I hate food waste. So I’m always on the lookout to make sure the food we’ve either purchased or grown & harvested is not wasted.

Right now our hens are laying lots of eggs. So I’m looking for ways to use them up.

I made Instant Pot Eggs (no peeling, y’all!) so that I’ll have chilled boiled eggs waiting in the fridge for RancherMan’s snacking pleasure. And I also like to use chopped boiled egg in our cold salads.

Eggs can be 'boiled' in the Instant Pot and you don't even need to shell them! #TexasHomesteader

But I’ll also use them as a cool high-protein side dish on our supper plates in my continued efforts to serve cool foods during the heat of summer.

Then to use more of those fresh eggs I added some egg dishes to my supper menu plan. One day I made Chile Rellenos cooked in jumbo muffin cups. Of course I cooked them outside in my solar oven.

I also made Breakfast Quesadillas for supper one night. Having breakfast for supper is one of our favorite menu options. And eggs are high protein and inexpensive – even if you don’t have your own hens. 

Using Up Leftovers

Aside from using up the excess eggs, I also focused on using any leftover food in our fridge. I planned meals based on what remained in the refrigerator needing to be used.

For instance I like to make a veggie-heavy Endless Soup to keep in our fridge for lunches. That way I can lightly heat a bowl of healthy soup instead of grabbing something much more heavy in carbs for lunch.

This week’s soup used the leftover veggies from past suppers, Free Veggie Broth saved in a jar from some of the canned veggies we ate, some chopped carrots, chopped leftover chicken, a handful of whole-wheat pasta to soak up the broth along with a few sliced & simmered Luffas.

Yep, it’s true you can eat young 5” luffa as a zucchini squash substitute. Squash bugs always kill my zucchini in the garden but they don’t ever bother my luffa. So, yeah!

5. Homemade Gifts

I was out in the garden this week when the mail woman drove down our driveway to deliver a package to us. As she was scanning the pkg. she asked how my garden was doing.

As I was lamenting the slow progress this year, she mentioned that she was pickling cucumbers and had done so many jars she was tired of it. I asked her brine recipe since I’ve never made my own brine to my satisfaction.

She couldn’t remember the ingredient proportions exactly, so she asked my phone number and said she’d text her recipe to me.

Then a couple of days later she brought a jar of her homemade pickles and a jar of her homemade pickled okra along with her brine recipe.

Repaying Kindness 

I don’t know our mailwoman personally, so her kindness & generosity is very touching. I made her a batch of peanut butter cookies to repay her kindness.

I didn’t have a cute tin to present them in, so I repurposed a plastic produce bag that had been added recently with our grocery curbside pickup order to package the cookies.

Then I hand-stitched a  cute little Denim Bag in about 15 minutes to hold the bag of cookies & better present my gift.

I made a cute denim bag using worn jeans. #TexasHomesteader

Mama always says presentation is half the gift. And mama’s always right!

What Are Your 5 Frugal Things?

So there’s my (certainly not all-inclusive) list of 5 things we did this week to save money. What are your 5 Frugal Things this week?


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2 thoughts on “5 Frugal Things – Homemade Gifts, Equipment Repair, Too Many Eggs, etc

  1. candace ford

    I’m always so happy to see a post from you. As you know we, here in Oregon and Washington states, are experiencing record high temps and lots of hideous forest fires on many thousands of acres of land. So very sad to think of the billions of board feet of trees ruined and (in my mind) the even more horrendous loss of wildlife both lives and habitat. The trees that are acclimatized to the typical northwest temperatures and rainfall are all stressed and many are frighteningly brown. I was so glad when Neighbor Paul got here to cut and bale and take away our 10 acre grass hay crop. When my sweet father was alive he had equipment and he cut and raked our (his) field Then I would come and drive the tractor while he sat on the bailer with a can of beer and tied the knots that he bailer missed. My brother and a friend of his usually came and pitched the bales on the farm truck. Then Pa and I would stack them in a neighbors barn where we had to carry them up a short steep flight of steps. Those neighbors are gone now and that old barn is falling down now. But, daughter of neighbor Paul and her family have moved back to the area and have taken over that property. I’m always so happy when things seem to come around and neighbors are all doing well. NOw if we could just get some RAIN!!! Take good care, drink lots of fluids (sun tea) and rest often!!!

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      Oh my sweet friend, I’m so sorry about the weather troubles you’re dealing with. It’s so hard when it just doesn’t seem to have an end in sight. I’m hoping things normalize soon for you. But I loved reading your story about baling hay with your dad. #PreciousMemories. Stay safe, sweet girl. ~TxH~


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