Five Frugal Things 7/14/2017

Winged beans

  1. The suitcases we had decided on for the Big Mystery Adventure™, Eagle Creek’s Gear Warrior 32″ rolling duffels, were 30% off on Amazon Prime Day so Brett and I each bought one. The bags were regularly $289 and $279 each before tax, but we purchased both for just $416, tax included. Shipping is free of course. I’m getting a blue duffel with orange trim, and Brett’s is black with bright blue trim.
  2. WenYu paid the bill for her fall term this week. She declined the federal student loan that was included in her financial aid package because she’s saved enough and doesn’t need it, and wants to graduate from college with no debt. She has enough saved as well to cover the spring term bill when it comes due in January, and is now saving to pay her expenses for the following year.
  3. Our favorite farmers at the market, Dang’s Fresh Farm, sold us three big bundles of bok choy for $5 versus the regular price of $6, took 50¢ off the price of the cucumber we needed, and gave us a bag of winged beans for free! We shop their stall every week because they always have beautiful produce, so this was a special treat for us. We’d never tried winged beans before, but they are delicious, and can be eaten either hot or cold.
  4. We cooked all meals at home (except for breakfast at the Tip Top Cafe to celebrate YaYu’s testing success), ate all the leftovers, drank filtered tap water and sun tea, were careful about turning off fans and lights when we weren’t using a room, watched our water usage, did all our laundry on one day and dried half of it in the sun, combined trips whenever possible when we had to go into town, took advantage of free entertainment (i.e. the beach) and did all those other small things that don’t seem like much but really do increase our savings.
  5. We put $14.29 into the change/$1 bill jar: $9.76 left over from the cable bill, $1.50 change from the farmers’ market, and $3.03 from recycling.

What frugal wins did you have this week?

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8 thoughts on “Five Frugal Things 7/14/2017

  1. Isabella says:

    Wow, it is amazing that WenYu has that debt-free college plan. Good for her! Using a variety of resources and lots of hard work, our four children also graduated almost debt-free too. (Two of them had loans totaling just $5,000 that they paid off in the first year out of college.) It made their young adult lives SO much better not to be saddled with debt.

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    • Laura says:

      WenYu receives a very generous grant from Wellesley that covers the majority of her expenses, but her financial aid package also always includes a loan and a balance she (and we) are expected to cover. So she works and saves like crazy because she wants to graduate debt free. She’s been very fortunate too to find summer jobs here that have paid well so that she can save and cover her expenses.

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  2. Nevadaannie says:

    Obviously I missed something, but why do you do laundry all on one day and consider that a frugal thing. Does it really matter? I love your blog and read it religiously so I am thinking I missed where you talk about that.

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    • Laura says:

      We have an extra large, high-efficiency machine that allows us to do big loads just once a week – three loads every Sunday. The cycles run 53 minutes whether the load is big or small, so it saves to just run it once a week.

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  3. Hawaii Planner says:

    Love WenYu’s college plan! I did something similar when I was in college, and worked multiple jobs to be able to decline the loans. I did have some – I believe I had about $15K, but paid it off within my first few years of working. I also cash flowed my entire MBA, so no loans there. It really made all of the difference in our longer term financial planning.

    What is the taste like on the winged beans? They look really interesting!

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    • Laura says:

      Thankfully for WenYu the loan amounts are low enough that she can cover them by working. Meiling works two jobs to cover her housing and food expenses, but had to borrow a little (<$2000) to cover her on-campus room and board the first year. Hopefully that will be it for her!

      The winged beans taste somewhere between lettuce and beans – really delicious. The farmers said their favorite way to eat them was raw, in salads. The girls plan to add them to the bowl when they fix ramen.

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  4. The One in Debt says:

    How did you go about producing such a money conscious child?! That’s great WenYu is going with debt free from college. I am still paying for mine! It’s a heavy load since my young adult hood.

    so what do you do with winged beans? I have never seen those. How exciting to try a new food. I think my favorite food, so far, that I found were shashito peppers. you roast them, add some kosher salt. and snack on them. every so often you get a hecka spicy one. kind of a game of fun to see who find the hot ones.

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    • Laura says:

      I think my kids are more frugal than I am! Meiling can be impulsive at times, but she pays her bills on time, and has an emergency fund. They’re all good at setting goals and working/saving for them.

      Love shashito peppers! We see them occasionally at the market here. The winged beans taste somewhere between lettuce and beans.

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