5 Frugal Things I Did This Week – Internet Contract Deal, Garden Soil, Credit Card Points

by Texas Homesteader ~

RancherMan & I live & work right here in our very own NE Texas paradise.  Now it’s true that without a corporate-employment salary infusion, money’s tight for us.  So we’re very careful with our expenses.  But let me tell ya it’s worth it – keeping our income requirements low allows us to live this life we love oh-so-much!

Every now & then I like to share 5 simple frugal things we did over the week that helps us to save money.  Come see a few easy ways we’ve been able to shave a few bucks here & there.  Saving money where you can comes together to make a great overall impact!

Our income is low, but there are many easy ways to save money. Come see 5 Frugal Things we did this week to save some cash! #TexasHomesteader

Credit Card Loyalty Points

RancherMan & I are trying to finish the landscaping around our new porch extension.  But we needed a few more retainer-wall stones to complete it.  So I used our credit card bonus points to print a free $50 e-certificate to Lowe’s.  Using that money means those landscaping stones will cost us nothing out of pocket.

Loyalty points are a great way to get free stuff – as long as you’re careful! It’s not really free if you’re paying for it with overspending or interest charges.

We use this card for all our monthly expenses.  But we’ve not paid a cent in credit card interest in over 10 years since we pay the card’s balance in full every month.

These accumulated credit card loyalty points have paid for restaurant dinners out, home improvement projects, gift cards for birthday gifts & more!

No-Waste (and less expensive) Sandy Fill Dirt

Another thing we’re needing for completion of our landscaping is fill dirt.  I’m planning on planting lots of lavender and other plants that like good drainage.  The little 40-lb bags of fill sand at Lowe’s were priced at over $3 each!  That would result in not only lots of plastic bags (ugh) but also be pretty pricey for the approximately 1.5 yards (about 3,500 lbs) we needed.

We called around and found out low & behold there was a sand/gravel guy close to us.  So we loaded up the back of our pickup with large buckets (to make it easier to set aside for various stages of setting up our beds) and for only $25 he dumped a loader & a half full of that sandy fill dirt into our truck bed.  Score!

Our income is low, but there are many easy ways to save money. Come see 5 Frugal Things we did this week to save some cash! #TexasHomesteader

Annual Contracts

Our internet options out here in the sticks are few.  So every year when our internet contract expires our rate typically skyrockets.  You know, because they CAN.  They really have no competition and we really have no other reasonable internet options.  So RancherMan always gets on the horn with them to see if we can get a better rate.

We got a rate of about $20 per month cheaper than we could have done ourselves online.  So it’s always a good idea to call.  Heck that’s $240 per year savings for this one thing alone!

New Equipment Not Needed

Our new 12-month internet service comes with a brand-spankin’-new modem at no additional cost to us.  But we really don’t need  a new modem since our old one is still working just fine.  So we are planning to sell the modem new in the box.  It’ll be cheaper for someone else than buying a new modem at a retail establishment & give us a few bucks as well.

No Wasted Food From Dinner Party

We invited my folks over for supper one night this week. I served Slow-Cooker Chicken and roasted fresh veggies and a delightful Chocolate Crazy Cake for dessert.

When the meal was done we deboned the leftover chicken & tossed all the bones back into the slow cooker with a splash of vinegar and cooked it overnight.  This makes the most delicious Homemade Broth you can imagine for almost free!

So for a quick dinner for RancherMan & myself a few nights later, I whipped up some Corn Tortillas & used the leftover chicken & roasted peppers/onions to make into street tacos for another meal.

It was a quick meal since the meat & veggies were already cooked. (tortillas can be mixed, pressed & made in less than 15 minutes) And it also saved money plus eliminated any chance of wasting food.

Share Your Own Victories!

What about you?  What did you do this week to save money?


Want To Read More About Our Porch Extension?

Adding An Outdoor Living Space

Landscaping On The Cheap

No Waste (and Less Expensive) Fill Dirt For Gardens

Cheap (or FREE) Wood Mulch For Your Garden

Stopping BERMUDA GRASS From Your Plantings!

How To Keep Birds Off Your Porch Railings

C’mon by & sit a spell!  Come hang out at our Facebook Page. It’s like sitting in a front porch rocker with a glass of cold iced tea.  There are lots of good folks sharing! 

And you can also follow along on  Pinterest,  Twitter,  Instagram

If you’d like to receive an email when a new blog post goes live,

subscribe to our Blog!


9 thoughts on “5 Frugal Things I Did This Week – Internet Contract Deal, Garden Soil, Credit Card Points

  1. Nancy

    We actually need internet for my son’s schooling and both our jobs. But we only have internet, no cable TV. When I first moved in with him he had both, but we found it less expensive to pay Netflix and Amazon prime. The cable was close th 200 a month (possibly more). Amazon is 49.00 a year (student price, since he is a student) and Netflix is 11.99 a month. Oh and Hulu for 8.00 a month. So now we have cut out at least 175.00 per month. (Amazon Prime averages out to about 8.25 per month at the regular $99 per year). And I introduced Kaleigh to ALF (the first 2 seasons are free on Amazon) so I have noticed her rewatching those during her hour of tablet time that I give her. She knows if it doesn’t say free she can’t watch it.
    Before we moved up here we just had a DVD player so we would make a week!y trip to Honey Grove Library they have a great selection of DVDs.

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      We’re in the same boat, Nancy. I obviously need internet for my blog. And RancherMan’s research for the best deals is one of the major ways we’re able to keep our income level low. So we just try to make sure we’re paying the least amount possible for it. We’ve got Amazon Prime and do enjoy it for watching movies from time to time in the winter months, but otherwise we’re not inside enough to enjoy a movie. So that works for us too. Internet options are awesome! Plus I’m shocked at how expensive cable is these days! We decided back when we got married to nix the cable but we were in the ‘big city’ then and had over-the-air options. Our antenna options are much less here, but they typically suffice. ~TxH~

      1. Nancy

        Kaleigh and I have a movie night each week. I buy a dollar box of red vines (much better than Twizzlers, in our opinion) and make popcorn. Then we choose a movie And watch. We do that year round.in the winter we drink hot cocoa and in the summer something cool.

  2. Sharon Goist

    Love your site and ideas!
    We live on 34 acres. Our garden is huge. We can, dry, freeze. We have chickens and my husband hunts.
    This time of year even after sharing with our kids and friends we always have garlic, onions and potatoes getting ready to go bad. The onions start sprouting. We take the baby ones that are still firm and will replant soon. The rest of them I clea, slice and dry them inndehydrator. Then I put them in blender and have enough onion powder till harvest time. We plant red and one. I use their skins to make natural dyes for Easter eggs. Garlic starts drying up ( e plant around 2500 heads a year). I do same with it. Clean, slice, dry and then put in blender for powder. We grow a lot of potatoes. Red, white and yellow. This time of year they start to grow eyes. We keep nice ones without eyes. Set aside those we will replant. Then I peel the remainder. Make mashed potatoes a little on runny side with water and salt only. Then I put them in dehydrator to dry. Once dry they also go in blender to make into flakes. Can reconstitute them for mashed potatoes by adding milk, butter, water. Also they can be added to anything to thicken it. Keep writing. So enjoy you. God bless you and yours. Sharon

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      OOHH – another dehydrating aficionado! Don’t ya love it Sharon?? My dehydrator gets lots of action too! Nothing like those shining jars of dehydrated goodness in your pantry #amiright?? Good for you for being such a good steward of the food that comes into your home. Wasted food is a big problem these days. ~TxH~

  3. candace

    We have the same issues with internet and phone svc here in the boondocks. And no alternatives. I can’t think of anything specific that I did to save money, but being careful and frugal is in my blood. I recently had to send a check to a cousin in Nevada so I fished around an found a kind of grubby envelope. I mentioned in my note that it was part of my “inheritance” from my mother. She looked at it when her husband brought in the mail and had a momentary “OMG that’s from my mom” thought. Then I reminded her of our shared grandmother cutting the bottoms off of bills and junk mail and using that for scratch paper. She said, yep, she does that and her mother did the same.
    On another most wonderful note, the darling screech owls are back. If we are out at the right time of the evening we can see a little feathered head at the hole. It is so amazing to watch them come in to the hole. It seems like they are flying a hundred mph and they don’t pause but fly straight on in the nest box. Last year we got to see the fledglings when they first left the box. Oh, and The Bird Man who lives with me put up a kestrel box on a high thing he rigged up out in the pasture. Kestrels are pretty cool little predator type birds and we saw our first swallow just the other day. The Bird Man has swallow boxes all around the place and we like to sit out in our garden area and watch them bickering over who gets which box, then watching them feed their young.

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      I learned quite a bit about using whatcha got from my beloved grandmother. She was a quiet soul and went about her days taking care of her family without creating waste. Oh how I miss her…

      How exciting that your screech owls are back, Candace! We have a few owls around here but they glide through from time to time and away they go, I’m assuming they’re nesting in the creek area. It sounds like you’ve got quite a few interesting feathered friends where you live. Fun! ~TxH~

  4. Evelyn Edgett

    Good job! Our internet is going bye bye in November when the contract is up. We will take our time to replace it, looking for a really good deal. Until then my son and I will simply have the Redneck drop us off at the library in town on his way to work in the afternoon a couple of days a week, and we will use their internet. This will also aid in our exercise, because we can easily walk the 3 miles back home. Win win!

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      How clever you are Evelyn! It seems internet costs get higher and higher every year. And heck, since our provider has no competition out here I feel we’re behind the 8-ball. ~TxH~


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

* Please enter the Biggest Number

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.