Somehow we’ve already arrived at the last week of April. Like I mentioned last week, this month has been insanely busy for us and the days have absolutely blown by. We have a two week trip coming up next month, and I’m looking forward to some time where we don’t have so much going on.
I’m the kind of person who always likes to be doing things, but this month has been a bit much even for me. The beauty of travel for us is that we are forced to relax and enjoy ourselves instead of constantly moving around working on chores because they’re never done at home. Plus we only travel carry on, so there’s something really freeing about only having a handful of clothes to worry about. Even almost 14 months into my clothing ban, I have a closet full in our bedroom and it still feels like too much.
Friday’s Frugal Five
1. My brother- and sister-in-law invited us over Saturday night and they made homemade dumplings for dinner. They were so delicious that our son ended up eating nine of them by himself, to the point that he was too full to eat much dessert.
We’ve been working on potty training a lot lately, and our son has been having some success, so my mother-in-law wanted to do something special to celebrate and made us all banana splits. It was the very first time I’d ever eaten one, and I have to admit that they are pretty darn good. For a kid who grew up hating chocolate and ice cream, I’ve certainly come around.
2. I got my very first Amazon Affiliate gift card “payment”! $12.33 might not be a huge sum of money (and they only pay out for a minimum of $10), but there’s something extra awesome about bringing in a little money courtesy of this blog. I may have chosen not to put ads on this site, at least for now, but I won’t argue with a few dollars headed my way.
What do you all feel about ads? Are they all terribly annoying, or are they not so bad in moderation? My biggest reasoning against putting ads on my site at all (and never to the point where it detracts from the reading experience), is that would make it feel like this was more of a “side hustle” than a hobby. I specifically quit a side hustle that I loved in order to claw back time with my family, and I don’t want blogging to turn into something that I “have” to do.
3. Since we live backed up to a forest and live in the Pacific Northwest, our roof gets covered with moss rapidly throughout most of the year. We once had a professional company come out to clean the roof, right after we had our son and were too overwhelmed to do it ourselves, and it cost us $450. While they did a great job, and it was nice not to worry about it, we can buy moss removal supplies at Costco for $50 and do it ourselves for a fraction of the price. So, once again, my husband found himself on our roof this past weekend to clean off the pine needles and lay down moss killer. I wish there was a more environmentally friendly way to take care of the moss, but we haven’t found one. Our roof doesn’t get real sun for six months out of the year, and the amount of moss that grows on it proves how it is the perfect damp, dark location for it to thrive.
4. Since this past month has been so insanely hectic, I’ve laid off putting much thought into what lunch I bring to work. I’m still not going out to pick up take out, but the meals have been pretty basic – oatmeal and a banana or a can of soup. This past week, I’ve done a much better job bringing actual leftovers to work, which are way more interesting than the “emergency” supplies I’ve been living off of lately. Even basic dinner leftovers are a lot tastier and helps to keep me from picking up lunch “just one time.” – and the hot sauce I keep at my desk definitely helps.
5. We’ve had some awesome weather lately (including a number of days in the 70s), so we’ve spent quite a bit of time in the yard enjoying the sunshine and doing some gardening. Since the backyard is lined by a grove of tall evergreen trees from the park, our front yard hasn’t seen full sunlight in six months, and I’ve been soaking up every minute of it. I’ve done quite a bit of weeding, and my son helped me plant some more seeds this week (green onions and sugar snap peas), and he’s getting pretty excited because the flowers in his raised bed have started to sprout.
Since I mentioned last week I was going to report about my efforts to run more than once a week, I wanted to say that I went for a twenty minute run on Monday even though my treadmill broke. I had to keep an eye on the kiddo, so I ended up running laps around our front yard and the cul de sac; not the most exciting track ever, but I’m glad I got the run in. It paid off on Wednesday when I broke my personal record for both my 5k distance and hour run on my way into work. My husband took apart the treadmill Monday and attempted to fix it, but so far hasn’t had any luck. He’ll look at it again this weekend, so cross your fingers that he can repair it for me.
Have you ever had a treadmill repaired? Any tips? It was free to start with, but I’d really rather not replace it.