Whether we want to or not, it’s probably a good thing that we keep thinking (and doing) things to save us money. One of the hardest things for me to do, in light of this current inflationary economical nightmare we are all finding ourselves in, is that I have to start saying no to some of the purchases I want to make. I have always had great difficulty with this despite knowing that it’s only temporary (maybe) and for a good cause (like being able to continue paying our bills!)

Such as: My adding machine (printing) calculator of 25 years has finally died. Rather than spend the $35 to replace it, I’m using my hand held calculator for now. Am I happy about this? NO! But the hand held is working out fine for now so I’ll let this want/need go for now. Savings $35.

Next are my house slippers. You can not exist in this house without slippers. There are cold wood floors everywhere that show every single, greasy footprint if you’re not wearing slippers or socks. I must go through a pair of slippers every few months or so regardless of what I buy. I’ve purchased super expensive slippers from L.L. Bean and super cheap slippers from WalMart and they all meet the same bitter end: heel deterioration. My current inexpensive MukLuks have met the same dire end. Thankfully, as always I am getting a refund and I declined a replacement pair. Rather than spend the money, I found an older pair of slippers I discarded (in the back of my closet) and decided to insert a blue pair of Dr. Scholl’s odor eaters as a base (I do NOT have smelly feet but had a pair of the Drs hanging around in hubby’s closet. I’ll say no more!) I cut the blue inserts to fit. Needless to say, this has worked out. Am I happy I didn’t buy myself another new pair of slippers? Not really but since I was able to resolve this problem for now. I’ll let it go. Savings $25.

This next one really bothers me. Or at least it did at first till I came to the realization that it’s all for the better. I ran out of my usual Absolut Citron that I use exclusively to make my Cosmopolitan Cocktails (click here for recipe). When I went to my fave discount liquor store they only had the regular Absolut. Not the Citron. The citrus is very important in the recipe. I inquired about a substitute and the salesperson recommended Smirnoff Lime. She said it’s #2 (as Absolut Citron is #1). The biggest difference she said was the price. Absolut Citron sells for $32 for 1.5 liters. Smirnoff is only $18. The drinks will taste the same, I was assured. The Smirnoff, she recommended, gets a drinker drunker quicker. In these troubling times, maybe that a good thing. I’ll let you know. On some Sunday morning. Savings $14.

As all of us are doing, we’re cutting back on our meat consumption and cooking up some new and tasty vegetarian dishes. I’m happy about this change. Hubby is not. He’s a meat and potatoes kind-of-guy. Me? A simple peanut butter and jelly sandwich oftentimes can suffice. This week I made my first corn chowder and we cooked up one of our favorite Italian pasta dishes: rigatoni and broccoli. Money saved? I have no idea but I’ll clock it at $20 since both meals had no meat whatsoever.

Also, I am sure most of us are aware that each time we go to a grocery store, we see more and more empty shelves. This is due mostly to the pandemic as more and more people fall ill and less and less people can return to work. This problem, I am afraid is only going to get worse. I am finding out that many of the people I know and follow are getting either the delta deviant or the original covid-19. Two of the bloggers I follow have come down with the virus and have had a very rough time of it. The first is I-Allegedly. You can see and hear Dan’s experience by clicking here. The next one is Kate from She’s Drinking Coffee. Kate and her whole family (husband and 2 sons) all came down with the virus at the same time. You can see and hear her experience by clicking here.

Please be vigilant people. This is not a joke. It’s very serious. You may get the virus and recover but you might have long term effects throughout the rest of your life. Get the vaccination, wear a mask and social distance. Wash your hands in a 70% alcohol solution. Eat well. Take care of yourselves and pray for the best.

In any event, empty shelves are in our future. Stock up as best as you can to prepare. Here’s what I found (or didn’t find) at my weekly Aldi shopping trip. I couldn’t get nitrate-free sliced turkey and many, many others of our weekly staples. We had to make substitutes. Money saved: 0 (zero). There was nothing to buy!!!

It looks like we’re going to be eating out at McDonald’s a minimum of at least once per month. Why? Because the discounts are just too good to pass. McDonald’s apparently is becoming our new go-to restaurant since it’s basically the only one we can afford right now. I’ve got at least 3 coupons right now to buy any sandwich (we get the deluxe crispy chicken) and get one free. That’s a $6.80 savings and boils down to $3.40 each per sandwich). This week I used the McDonald’s app and found out if I ordered a crispy chicken sandwich I got free French fries and any drink of my choice. That was a savings of $4.39. Eventually we’ll be going to McD’s for breakfast too. I have a coupon for free Egg McMuffins. Sad note: McDonald’s is eliminating their eat-in sections. It’ll all be take-out soon enough. Oh well. It’s our new reality.

Lastly, being up in the northeast, we didn’t exactly escape ALL of the wrath of Hurricane Ida. Many towns got flooded, especially people’s basement. We were fortunate in that we suffered no damage except to our side door. The west side of our house gets an awful pounding with each and every storm that passes our way. Hurricane Ida pounded the side of our house so badly that it blew out our screened storm door. The door became so water logged, it almost exploded. It was so warped we couldn’t even close it. Granted, the door is about 18 years old but it needs to be replaced. We went to Home Depot and found a good quality replacement screen storm door for $149. This wasn’t an expense we wanted but nonetheless, we had the cash to replace it. For another $139 Home Depot could do the work but we declined that option. Hubby will be replacing the side storm door this afternoon. That’s a savings of $139 plus tax. Am I happy about this? The newer door has better features, better design and looks more professional, so yes!

Here’s a picture of the old door. You can see that it warped and has gaps around the edges as it will no longer close nor lock. The door cracked in two places and allowed water to seep in and affect the structure. The glass panels also are water ruined.

The above photos show the removal of the old door, the now open door frame with no screen door at all, the placement of the new screened, storm door (with the tag still attached to the center). Note: no gaps!

This is the finished new side screen storm door, complete with a new black handle, better building quality and a bit more architectural design. We love it! It’ll probably cut down on energy costs as well.

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