I had said that life was going to calm down once we hit mid-October, right? Well, let’s just say I’m going to revise that and go with early November, because I am absolutely not going to be able to catch by breath until then (and again didn’t get home until after eleven last night).

Most of why life has been so busy has been for good reasons (husband getting out on a week-long hunting trip, going to Oktoberfest weekend in Leavenworth, loads of presentations for work, additional work/volunteer related commitments), but it has still been just that – so, so busy. I am very much looking forward to a quieter November and December, and at least at this point, it looks like we will get just that.

Of course, we will probably escape out of town at least a couple of times, but low key weekend travel can be really reenergizing, which is what we could really use right now. That, and maybe some time to finally clear off my kitchen table.

Friday’s Frugal Five

1. We headed back to Leavenworth last weekend for Oktoberfest, which we haven’t done since before the kiddo was born, and it was a totally awesome weekend. We stayed at one of the basic cabins at the KOA (no bathroom/kitchen) and shared the cost between a bunch of us, so the price came to just $24/person per night. Considering the crazy prices everywhere charges for festival weekends, I feel like we got a really good deal. On top of that, they run a shuttle into town (just over a mile walk), which is really nice when you’re making a number of trips back and forth.

One of the trails right next to Downtown

We also brought along my husband’s godfather and covered his lodging and share of the gas in trade for babysitting while we went out Friday night. It really is the best of both worlds – we get to go out in the evening, but still get to bring the kiddo along for the rest of the weekend, which is absolutely our preference.

I still think we got the better end of the deal, though, because we were out until 2am and didn’t have to worry about the kiddo once. I haven’t been out that late, let alone awake, since I got pregnant over four years ago though, and it took days to recover. Regardless, it was absolutely worth it.

Family band that plays regularly in Leavenworth

2. We had our regular Costco shopping trip for our normal household good purchases like laundry detergent and dishwasher soap, and somehow almost everything we needed had an extra coupon for a couple dollars off, so we saved an extra $20 over what I expected to spend. Not crazy huge savings, but it always feels extra good to get money off on things I would be buying anyway.

3. My mother has been laid up for a few weeks with an injury, and I did some grocery shopping for them earlier in the week to help ease the load a little bit. I don’t mind grocery shopping, and it felt good to do something small for them. My mother watches our son every Wednesday (and the occasional date night), and while I can never fully repay her for that, when I do have a chance to do something in return, I always try and jump on it.

I did end up grabbing a few groceries for our house while I was out shopping, and while I let her know I needed to calculate out the difference, she gave me money for the whole trip. No matter how old you get, she always feels like she has to be my mom and take care of me, and I very much appreciate the gesture. And hey, our grocery bill will be just a little bit smaller come my next monthly update.

4. I’ve had ten no spend days so far this month, which is pretty dang decent, but not spectacular, which is what I was hoping for this month. Between truck tires and repairs, furnace bills, and other random expenses, it felt like I couldn’t help but whip out my credit card twice as many days as I would have liked.

With less than a week left in the month, I’ll need to find a way to have two more no spend days to tie my first attempt for a No Spend month last November, and three to beat it. I don’t expect to get there, so I think I may try again next month and cross my fingers that it’s a little bit quieter. Still, the nine is more than I would have had without tracking, so I’ll call this a partial win so far.

5. Remember how I talked last week about my troubles with our furnace and how my troubleshooting and the troubleshooting of our neighbor couldn’t get it back up and running? We had the HVAC repair person out last Friday, and while the part was warranted, we still had to pay for the labor AND the initial maintenance call fee. For a twenty minute repair under a warranted part, we were charged $339.

I have a call in to the company to talk to a manager, but otherwise, I think we will he looking for another repair company in the future. Just because they are the ones who initially installed the furnace six years ago doesn’t mean we need to stick with them for all service calls.

Running Update

Back to a more typical week at least on the workout front! Run + lift on Monday, run on Tuesday and Wednesday. The Wednesday run wasn’t a long one, but it still happened. Feels way better than the once I managed last week to be sure. On top of the runs, Friday/Saturday/Sunday averaged 20k step days, so I was also reasonably active through the weekend as well (including close to three hours of dancing Friday night!)

What do you do when life gets really busy to find time for calm and quiet?

20 thoughts on “Friday’s Frugal Five (2018 – Week 43)

  1. you got a night out until 2? sweet and a cabin trip on top. you ever get a cabin at champoeg state park in willamette? we never think to reserve on time for wine country.

    when our lives used to be busy i would just start saying no to things if i could. otherwise if i had to work a ton i just waited for it to end and try to spend less for a little treat when things let up.

    1. No, I’ve never stayed down there. But I went to college at Willamette in Salem, so Saint Paul’s a little close for an overnight 😉

  2. I love the fact you stayed out late and partied hard – we all need to take the time to do that occasionally.

    And hope your mum gets better soon – I know I’m starting to get worried if my parents are getting to that age.

    1. It was so much fun and so worth it, even though it took me a while to recover. And she will be fine, just will take some time. Thanks for your concern 🙂

  3. Oh, I’m jealous of your Oktoberfest trip! I still have never been to a proper Oktoberfest (my German ancestors must be looking on in shame lol!). This week I was able to do a few more frugal things. Life has FINALLY, mercifully slowed down around here. I’m working for myself full time and hubs completed his test. We’re taking some time to breathe and relax. 🙂

    This week:

    1. I just used a coupon to score a free slice of pizza from a gas station. It’s not all-star quality, but it was a free meal, and I’m not complainin’. 🙂

    2. I uesed a coupon to get a haircut for $6 instead of $16.

    3. I sold my old wooden standing desk converter for $40 on Craigslist. It was worth $150, but I’m just happy to have it out of the house!

    4. I exercised my right to vote and they gave me a FREE sticker! Now that’s just awesome. 😉

    5. I was craving pancakes yesterday. I made a fairly healthy oatmeal pancake recipe to satisfy my craving for fewer calories. Oh, and it was made from ingredients readily available in my pantry. 🙂

    1. Well, perhaps you’ll just need to head up this direction and come with me next year 😉

      Oatmeal pancakes or fried oatmeal? I love me some fried oatmeal.

  4. I always seem to miss Oktoberfest! Sounds like you had a great time Friday night. I’m always in awe whenever someone who has to get up early for a kiddo does that. I stayed out TIL 1am last night (unusual for me) and declared today a work from home day.

  5. Oh my that trail! Love fall foliage. My mother still does the same sorts of things yours does trying to still take care of me. I greatly appreciate it, but at the same time it’s unnecessary.

    1. Unnecessary, but it’s good to feel loved 🙂 And the fall colors have been amazing this year.

    1. Soooo frustrating! Probably the fact that us DIYers still tend to be no good with HVAC systems is probably why they can get away with charging so much 😉

    1. It’s going to be a long recovery, but she’s been amazingly positive about the whole ordeal 🙂

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