Monday, September 06, 2004

Frugal Weekend

I was a busy camper this weekend. We thought long and hard about having a weekend out, but rather than go out for dinner, and rather than take the kids out, we spent a bit more on groceries, bought a bottle of wine and had a nice grilled dinner with homemade salsa and grilled tuna instead.

Compare this to the cost of a dinner out:

Tuna steak $8.00 Sing (about 4 US)

Wine $19.90 Sing (about 10 US)

Asparagus $2.80 Sing (1.40 US)

Salsa and Chips total cost (not including prep time) $5.00 US

I think that the total cost of the dinner was around 20 for 2. Now granted, it was not prepared by a gourmet chef- nor did it have the "ambiance" but it was pretty darn good if I do say so myself (not that I was the grill cook, I leave that to Jeff!)

Other frugal things over the weekend included starting my own sourdough starter. I have it "cooking" on the shelf in the kitchen and it should be ready for our first loaf of homemade bread by the end of the week. I know that bread at the store is cheap, but the kids like playing with the bread dough, I can make it with whole grain flour and not include all of the sugars and preservatives. We won't survive off home baked bread, but a loaf a week should cut back our dependence on processed foods and it will be a fun day to boot!

I also saved I figure at least 150 dollars this week (US$). Rather than buy a new rug for the kids play area, I dyed one that I already had. back when we lived in Taipei, I purchased two very nice white rugs for about 15 bucks each on sale at Ikea. I figured while Declan was an infant (right before he was born is when I got them) I could still do white. Well, needless to say, there is so much ambient dirt in Taiwan, that they were dirty within 2 weeks, even though we don't wear shoes in the house! So, they got put away when we moved to Lotus Hill in XiZhi and I could not throw stained but otherwise in perfect condition rugs away. SO... When I was home in the states this summer I spent about $20 on navy Rit dye. I dyed one of the rugs this weekend, and it turned out surprisingly well. I figure that is at least the cost of a new rug (around 100-150 dollars for sure!)

Remember the cardinal rules:

1. reduce
2. reuse
3. recycle

Every step helps...

Tomorrow, the purge of toys report...



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