Sunday Afternoon 4/16/2017

Aren’t these Easter eggs gorgeous? They’re blown eggs covered in Japanese washi paper!

To those of my readers that observe the holiday, I hope you are having a happy and glorious Easter!

I have been sleeping better this week, Brett’s been waking me up every morning (although I did sleep in later on Friday morning), and yesterday I got up before 9:00 on my own. I still think it’s going to take another week or so for things to really get back to normal, but at least things are moving in the right direction, sleep-wise. What a royal pain though.

Nothing but blue skies . . . and heat and humidity

Although today’s weather is sort of cool, it’s been quite hot and humid here all week and has felt more like summer than spring. While I love the sunshine and warm temperatures, I’ve never adjusted to the humidity here. A few of the farmers and some shoppers were commenting on Wednesday, as we waited for the market to open, that with temperatures this hot right now we can probably expect a long, hot (and possibly miserable) summer this year. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that it won’t happen, but I’m not feeling very optimistic at this point.

I wrote in Friday’s Five Frugal Things post that we had found a better deal on a graphing calculator with Amazon, and cancelled the first order. Well, there turned out to be problems with the second order as well – after two days I checked on it to see what was happening and Amazon hadn’t even charged us for the calculator, let alone shipped it, even though their website claimed it was in stock. This is the first time we have ever had an issue with Amazon, so I was feeling quite angry and discouraged and wondered if the calculator was something we could even find on the island. But, I found it in stock at our local Walmart at the same low price, placed the order and it was ready for pick-up the same day! I never thought I would be happy with Walmart, but here we are.

Don’t forget to keep entering Japan Giveaway #3, for the KitKat tasting experience! The giveaway is open through Wednesday.

Anyway, this afternoon I am:

  • Reading: I finished The Burglar’s Guide To the City – a very interesting and enjoyable read – and just downloaded My Year of Meats, by Ruth Ozeki. I read and enjoyed it when it first came out in 1998, but it was mentioned again somewhere a week ago or so, and I decided to reread it.
  • Listening to: Little chicks peeping away outside! It’s like all the neighborhood hens had eggs hatch at the same time.
  • Watching: Brett and I are still watching This Is Us – such a good show! It does an exceptional job of tackling adoption issues (like usually there aren’t any), and especially trans-racial adoption. On Friday night we watched Cool Runnings as it was YaYu’s turn to pick the movie and it’s one of her favorites, about the Jamaican bobsled team. I finished the Band of Brothers series (and now have the book on hold at the library), watched the whole Ken Burns National Parks series and have started watching The War, about WWII, at night while I earn Swagbucks.
  • Cooking/baking: It’s Sunday, so that means eggs for dinner! If all the girls were all home we’d have had Eggs a la Goldenrod for breakfast, which was our traditional Easter breakfast, but it was just Brett and I this morning because YaYu attended a sleepover last night – we had our usual oatmeal and yogurt and fruit. Tonight we’re having a zucchini frittata, and fruit. Still no baking: we have plenty of the snacks yet to go that we brought back from Japan.
  • Happy I accomplished this past week: We’re almost ready to send YaYu’s visa application for her summer trip to China. We have applied for a Chinese visa for either us or the girls five different times now, and each time it’s been different! Brett and I roughed out some more details for our Big Mystery Adventure™ this past week – we’re still a l-o-n-g way from finalizing anything, and are still in major saving mode, but it’s nice to be putting things down on paper and seeing things start to gel. There’s still lots of work to do, but what we got done was pretty exciting! Even though it was very uncomfortable at times because of the weather, I got in all of my daily bike rides (three times a day, for five miles each time), and Brett got in his daily one-hour walk. I also drank all of my water every day and did my 10 minutes of Portuguese study (this past week I learned vocabulary for measurement, both distance and weight, and prepositions).
  • Looking forward to next week: YaYu heads over to Oahu on Friday evening for her big Key Club convention, and on Saturday Brett and I are going on our overnight anniversary getaway! Otherwise it’s a pretty normal week – I’m still hoping we can get to the beach, but YaYu’s schedule has been brutal!
  • Thinking of good things that happened: I’m very happy that we were able to find YaYu a calculator locally, and at a good price. I have been so happy with the response to my Japan Giveaways! I had fun coming up with them, and fun finding items while we were in Japan. I truly mean it when I say I wish I could give something to everyone that entered/enters. My friend Denise sent YaYu two beautiful formal dresses that had belonged to her daughter – one dress fits her perfectly, so she is set for prom (the other would require alterations, so we’re going to try to find someone else who can use it). We put $6.48 into our change/$1 bill jar this week.
  • Grateful for: I am frankly very thankful right now that we are not at war, although it seems to be on the horizon with us dropping big bombs in Afghanistan, playing chicken with North Korea (which threatens South Korea and Japan), and troops in the pipeline for Syria and Somalia. We’re a military family, and we know what going to war means, and it frankly makes me sick to see or hear about pundits and others on TV cheering for or getting excited about bombs and war. It also makes me sick and angry that the current occupant of the White House is still taking golfing trips most weekends down in Florida while all of this is brewing.
  • Bonus question: What’s your favorite thing to have for breakfast? I don’t think I’ve met a breakfast I didn’t like, whether eaten in a restaurant or at home (well, except for ‘restaurant’ pancakes when I was little – they were too sweet and I hated them and the whipped butter that came with them). Breakfast really is my favorite meal of the day. When I lived in San Diego in the early 1970s, there used to be a restaurant in the Mission Bay area that made a sort of Eggs Benedict dish, with an amazing cheese sauce replacing the hollandaise sauce . . . and the cheese sauce contained loads of crab meat. It still is the best breakfast dish I’ve ever had. I doubt the restaurant is even still around, and I don’t even remember the name, but I remember those eggs. Eggs Benedict, in almost any permutation, from classic to made with smoked salmon to other additions is my favorite breakfast. If I see it on a breakfast menu, that’s what I’m having for breakfast in spite of all the carbs and fat!

That’s it for this week! Hope you all had a wonderful week and are looking forward to the one coming up!

Five Frugal Things 4/14/2017

The Safeway bag is new in our ‘recycling center,’ but we’ve been using the bag behind it and the Ross bag in back on the right side since 2014!

Frugality can be a big thing, a small thing, a one-time thing, or an everyday thing:

  1. YaYu took her April payment to her Mandarin tutor last weekend, but apparently we still had something on credit because this month’s payment was $50 less than expected! This is the last month of tutoring – YaYu takes her AP exam the first week of May, so that will be money back into our monthly budget.
  2. We charged $1000 on our Japan trip with my Hawaiian Airlines card so I received 50,000 bonus miles. Those miles will help reduce Meiling’s and WenYu’s trips home this summer and at Christmas. The Hawaiian card was paid off this week.
  3. Earlier this month I ordered a graphing calculator for WenYu from Amazon (needed for her SAT exam and next year’s math class). When I checked this week it hadn’t been shipped, but I noticed the same calculator was now being offered by another vendor (still Prime) for $10 less. I cancelled the first order and the second calculator should be here next week (the first order wasn’t due to arrive until the end of the month).
  4. We had another week with no food waste, made sun tea for iced tea and filled our Brita water pitcher over and over and over.
  5. Brett sorts our recycling into five different bags out in the garage, and takes it to the neighborhood recycling center every Thursday morning. I noticed this week that we are still using one of the bags I brought home from Japan when I went in 2014, and another from Christmas 2014. Why throw out something if it still does the job!

What frugal wins did you have this week?

Japan Giveaway #2 Winner & Japan Giveaway #3: Ultimate KitKat Tasting Experience

The randomly selected winner of the Japanese Kitchen Set in Giveaway #2 is: UnwrittenLifeBlog – congratulations!! I will be contacting you by email this afternoon and will get your prize off to you as soon as possible. Once again, I want to thank everyone that entered for the lovely comments. I have the best readers, and wish I had a prize to give to everyone that entered.

I’ve saved what I think is a very fun prize for the last giveaway this week: the Ultimate KitKat Tasting Experience! Inside the red cloth pouch above are 13 different flavors of snack-size Japanese KitKats.

The flavors the winner of this giveaway will receive are:

Top Row: Shinshu Apple, Japanese Strawberry, Dark Chocolate, Rum Raisin, Okinawan Sweet Potato

Middle Row: Matcha (green tea), Wasabi, Cherry Blossom-Green Tea, Sake, Roasted Tea

Bottom Row: Strawberry Cheesecake, Melon, Raspberry

This giveaway will end on Wednesday, April 19, at midnight HST, with the winner announced the following day. The rules for this giveaway are the same as for the first two plus one new way to win an entry:

  • Comment on this page. You can comment every day until the giveaway, but just once a day. The more entries you have, the greater your chances of being chosen the winner! I will post the link a couple of extra times during the week. Commenting in another post will not count.
  • Subscribe to “The Occasional Nomads.” If you are already a subscriber, you will receive one extra entry. Please comment below and let me know that you are already a subscriber or that you just joined.
  • Post about the giveaway on your own blog, if you have one, and receive one additional entry.
  • There’s also an extra way to earn an extra entry this time: Guess which one is my favorite! I won’t answer in the comments, but if you guess right I’ll add an extra entry to your total.

The winner will be announced in the blog and also notified by email. You must respond by comment to the blog or to the email to receive your KitKat Tasting Experience (I will email you back to find out where to send them). Also, I can only mail to addresses in the U.S. and Canada.

Looking forward to hearing from you – you know you want to try them!

This Week’s Menu: Eating Our Vegetables

Broccoli and lovely purple cabbage at the market last week (yes, we bought both!

One of the best things to me about living on Kaua’i has been how much our vegetable intake has increased. We’ve always been pretty good about getting in our daily recommended servings, but the year-round availability of fresh, affordable, locally grown produce has made it even easier to get in those three to five servings per day. Even though meat appears frequently on our menu, there are usually far more vegetables on our plates than meat.

If you’ve been reading the menu plans for a while though you’ve probably noticed that cucumbers and zucchini appear more than most other vegetables. That’s because 1) we like them; 2) they’re versatile; 3) they’re available year round; and 4) they’re extremely affordable. The cucumbers here are my favorite. They’re always sweet and crisp, and delicious eaten plain or in a salad. I always scrub them well because even the peel is edible – we don’t have to worry about wax or pesticides. Eggplant and greens are available all year as well, but not as well-liked around here. I happen to love eggplant, but we most often see the Asian varieties that are long and skinny versus the more mainstream egg-shaped ones, which are more versatile for cooking. Kale is the predominant green leafy vegetable grown here, and while we like it we tire of it very quickly; the same for Swiss chard. We love spinach, but rarely can find it at the market. Bok choy, on the other hand, is easy to use in a variety of ways so we usually go with that. Beets, carrots, radishes and salad greens are also around all year, but I’m the only one who really likes beets and radishes so we don’t get them, but we buy a bunch of carrots at least once a month. I can’t eat lettuce, and the girls and Brett only like salad occasionally so we don’t buy it very often either.

Other vegetables that we love, like broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, green beans, tomatoes and corn are seasonal. They’re also a bit more expensive than other choices at the market, but we snap them up when we see them. Right now we’re sadly seeing the end of the cabbage, broccoli and cauliflower season, but big, lovely beefsteak tomatoes are now in abundance. They’re be gone though for the most part by the time summer arrives. Green peppers are also seasonal, and will be gone shortly. They don’t seem to grow well here for some reason – most of them that we see are very small.

We also see lots of speciality Asian vegetables every week: long beans, Thai eggplants, and other things we don’t recognize and don’t know how to use. I feel like I should try some more of them, but so far haven’t taken the plunge.

Anyway. this week we’re having:

  • Tuesday (this evening): Stir-fried beef and broccoli (using leftover flank steak); steamed rice (no rice for me)
  • Wednesday: Grilled chicken and vegetable kabobs; couscous (no couscous for me)
  • Thursday: Leftovers (track meet)
  • Friday: Pasta with creamy red pepper alfredo sauce; meatballs; garlic bread; grilled zucchini (no bread or pasta for me)
  • Saturday: Thai red curry chicken; steamed rice; sautéed bok choy (no rice for me)
  • Sunday: Zucchini frittata; bread; fruit (no bread for me)
  • Monday: Mabo nasu; steamed rice; cucumbers (no rice for me)

We’ll be picking up yellow zucchini this week at the farmers’ market if it’s still available, as well as cherry and beefsteak tomatoes, bok choy, Chinese eggplant, plenty of cucumbers, papayas, bananas and limes. Everything else we need we already have on hand.

Finding the Right Suitcase

Brett and I haven’t owned a big suitcase since our trip to China to adopt YaYu in 2005, but we will both need to check bags for next year’s Big Mystery Adventure™ – it’s going to be more than a “carry-on only” sort of trip. We will also need to check bags when we begin our three-month Japan stays in 2019. We bought Meiling a giant suitcase as one of her high school graduation presents (from Costco), and big and medium rolling duffels for WenYu for college, but otherwise we are in the dark about what we each want and need.

So, lately we have been reading articles about what to look for when buying a bag that will be checked, and the features we each want in a suitcase.

Both Brett and I like the Delsey Helium Aero suitcases, and they’re highly recommended if you’re wanting a hardside bag.

  • Laura: I am leaning toward a soft-side bag, and would consider a big rolling duffel, just because of the amount you can get into them. They are usually lighter than a hard-side suitcase, although modern materials are changing that up. Still, a bag that’s heavy before you start packing is going to be too heavy by the time you finish. But, a hard-sided case saved me from disaster back in 1999, on the adoption trip to get WenYu. One of our Samsonite suitcases fell out of the back of our taxi on the way from the Hong Kong airport to our hotel, and a bus ran over it! Everything inside survived though, which is why I’m willing to consider a hard-sided bag, although it’s not my first choice.
  • Brett: My design perspective on the ideal bag requires a perfectly plumb, seamless interior, for maximum packing/storage space, and a durable, impact resistant exterior with no sharp edges or corners. But….. what to do about all that wasted space between the rectangular interior and smoothed cubic exterior, without adding weight? Steamer trunk or duffel/the lady or the tiger? I haven’t shopped yet, but instinct tells me I’m also going to settle on soft-side luggage.
  • Laura: The things I know I do want, even in a soft-sided bag, are spinner wheels (because they make moving the suitcase around easier on my back, shoulder and arms), loads of inside space, and a bright color, so it’s easy to find at baggage claim. Durability will be key though – if I go with soft side I’m going to be looking for fabric that’s waterproof, stainproof and tearproof. I also want a metal zipper and TSA-approved locks. One big downside to a hard-side bag, for me anyway, is that I might have to get additional bags to carry small items, or wet items, etc. because soft-side bags typically have additional pouches built into them that can be used for these types of items. My Hong Kong suitcase experience showed me a soft-side bag is not as safe for any breakable items – if that bag had been a soft-side most everything inside would have been toast.
  • Brett: Chiefly because I won’t be looking at my checked luggage at length, I have no aesthetic preferences. Just about any finish or color will be perfect so long as it has a grip or handle that doesn’t cause pain. My only other concern is the noise generated by locomotion: less than 70db, no audible screams, no “What’s that noise; where is it coming from” reactions among nearby travelers.
  • Laura: My suitcase is also going to have to be something I can maneuver on my own along with a carry-on. While Brett will be there to help, he’ll have his own bags to wrangle. I will also be checking airline regulations for size and weight restrictions before I make my decision. Sixty-two inches (length+width+height) is a pretty standard limit for most airlines, but it may be too large for some. We could pay extra for oversize luggage, but I’d prefer it if we didn’t have to.
  • Brett: Yes, “Utility Man” will be on the job, BUT as Laura says, I’ll have my own luggage to shuffle along as well. On our last trip, last-minute shopping became so intense that I had to ask, “Who’s going to carry all that home?” My principal complaint about rolling duffels is they are almost too accommodating; that is, nearly infinitely expandable so that it’s easy to stuff them beyond one’s ability to move them, and secondarily, the corresponding lack of protection for fragile and/or heavy articles.

    The Travelpro Maxlite 4 line: It’s the brand that many in the travel industry use and recommend.

  • Laura: What bags am I leaning to? The TravelPro Maxlite 4 Spinner bag has shown up on several sites as one of the best brands for checked luggage, and the price is reasonable. The bag (either the 25″ or the 29″) has all the features I’m looking for, and gets great reviews, although many say the 29″ is very big, maybe too big. While TravelPro is a different brand than my carry-on (Samsonite), it would coordinate well enough without being matchy-matchy. I could live with it. I also like several of the rolling duffels from REI, and Eagle Creek duffels get good reviews but I’m not all that excited by them. For a hard-side bag I’ve been looking at the Delsey Helium Aero. It’s affordable, made from lightweight polycarbonate, and also comes in a variety of bright colors.

    The Granite Gear Reticu-lite line

  • Brett: Extremely undecided after looking at REI, their best deal dujour being the 34-inch Granite Gear Reticu-lite rolling which offers 170L capacity, but with dimensions at 66.5 inches it busts the 62-inch girth limitation. (If memory serves well it is not prudent to carry luggage that is both oversized and overweight.) Meanwhile, Amazon is featuring a terrific expandable hardside, 29-inch Delsey Helium Aero Expandable Spinner Trolley, which I like because it has a padded laptop sleeve with two web pouches for accessories in the top compartment (although I would never check my laptop). Unexpanded, the Delsey measures only 61 inches total girth (add 2-1/2 inches fully expanded), and it’s available in a variety of colors that I wouldn’t be shy to be seen around.

So, no decisions yet. This is something we will be working on over the next few months, although I read somewhere that a great time and place to look for reduced luggage prices is Cyber Monday, on Amazon. We can do that.

Sunday Afternoon 4/9/2017

 

I thought I was finally getting over my jet lag, but no, my internal clock is still w-a-y off. This past week was crazy when it came to sleep. I had a good day last Saturday, and went to bed at a normal time and woke up at a decent hour last Sunday morning. I thought that maybe I had licked the jet lag and was back to my normal schedule. Nope. Last Sunday night I didn’t go to sleep at all – I was awake all night, bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, finally falling asleep at 6:00 a.m. Monday morning. I slept until noon, woke up feeling refreshed, and the rest of the day was great. I went to bed at around midnight on Monday, but didn’t wake up on Tuesday until nearly noon, and then was awake all night again! Friday night I went to bed at a somewhat normal time for me (1:00 a.m.), but I didn’t wake up yesterday until after 1:00 in the afternoon! Suffice it to say I am miserable right now. I’m getting enough sleep, but at all the wrong times. I told Brett to wake me up no later than 10:00 this morning, no matter what, but I was up on my own before that. Tomorrow and all this week I’m asking for a no-later-than 9:00 a.m. wake-up, and will hopefully be back to a normal sleep schedule by the end of the week.

I had a fretful week as well tracking a package we sent to Meiling a week ago last Friday. We sent both Meiling and WenYu ‘care packages’ filled with goodies and gifts from Japan, using flat-rate boxes, and were given an arrival date of this past Monday. WenYu’s package arrived in Boston and was delivered on Monday, and when we checked Meiling’s tracking number it said it was “out for delivery.” Except it was never delivered on Monday, and the next day it was sent to a different facility with a different zip code. Hmmm. From there it went to another facility, and on Wednesday morning it was sent to yet another postal facility! A package we had sent to her last fall had gotten lost, so at this point I was panicking. I called the post office in Oregon, and it turned out the fourth facility was the right one – different zip code, but it was the one that actually handled deliveries to her neighborhood, and she received her package that afternoon! Both girls were thrilled with their things – we got them each a mug from their favorite anime, a set of drawing pens, a sketchbook, and loads of KitKats and other Japanese snacks. Nothing in the boxes could have been replaced so I’m happy they both arrived safely.

Don’t forget you can still enter Japan Giveaway #2 for the Japanese kitchen set! The giveaway is open until Wednesday at midnight, HST.

This afternoon I am:

  • Reading: I’m still reading A Burglar’s Guide To the City because even though I have been awake at night, I have not been able to read for more than a few minutes. Although I’m awake at night, I seem to only be able to concentrate on a few sentences at a time, reading the same paragraph over and over because I can’t remember what it said or what it was about. Usually reading relaxes me and helps me fall asleep, but it has had no effect this past week. I could be reading in the afternoon, but that’s when I know I will fall asleep which will make it even more difficult to sleep at night.
  • Listening to: Lots of action going on in the neighborhood today – hammering, leaf blowers, lawn mowers, etc. And of course roosters are making loads of noise. Inside it’s quiet though. YaYu is still sleeping, and Brett is out for his daily walk. The washing machine will be starting up shortly too for our weekly Sunday laundry fest.
  • Watching: Brett and I have watched one episode of This Is Us every evening this past week and we love it! We watched the movie version of A Man Called Ove on Friday evening – a lovely film, although we had to pay close attention to the subtitles so we didn’t miss anything. Now I can’t wait to read the book, because I think I’m going to enjoy it even more. I’ve also started re-watching Band of Brothers while I earn Swagbucks before I go to bed.
  • Cooking/baking: Everyone was on their own for breakfast again this morning. Yogurt and fruit for me, with a sprinkle of granola, oatmeal with banana and honey for Brett, and noodles for YaYu. I am going to stand at the stove tonight and make omelets for our dinner – they were going to be ham & cheese, but we have lots of chili pork sauce left over from last night so will top the omelets with that. Omelets are easy to make (I once had a boyfriend that was a chef, and he showed me how to make and flip perfect omelets), but it’s been hot and I have been trying to avoid being at the stove. I wish there was a way to make an omelet in a slow cooker!
  • Happy I accomplished this past week: I got the bird cookies for the first giveaway packaged up and sent off to the winner, Laurel. I rode my bike every day, but only two times a day versus the three I had been riding before our trip. It’s gotten quite hot and humid, which makes it unpleasant to ride, even with two fans blowing on me. And, my current sleep schedule has also made it difficult to fit in a third ride. I studied Portuguese for at least 10 minutes every day, and drank at least eight glass of water a day. I got three items listed for sale on Craigslist and Facebook. But, mostly I didn’t accomplish much of anything.
  • Looking forward to next week: Maybe this will be the week we get to go to the beach. The weather’s really been lovely, but we’ve either been too busy or I’ve been dragging. I guess it wouldn’t hurt to feel tired on the beach instead of at home.

    Japanese elementary students all carry randosaru

  • Thinking of good things that happened: Our grandson started the first grade this past week (the Japanese school year starts in April) – I can hardly believe how fast the time has flown! The elementary school he attends is literally right across the street from their house – my daughter-in-law can stand on their balcony and watch him walk over there by himself. I cried a little when I saw the picture of him wearing his randoseru, the ubiquitous stiff leather backpack that all Japanese elementary students carry – it’s quite a milestone. I was shocked to learn that the backpack can cost between $350 – $600, a big investment for a family, but they are hand-stitched and made to last. Sometimes the grandparents give the backpack as a gift when a grandchild starts school but our son bought our grandson’s. We put another $22.46 in our change/$1 jar this week.
  • Grateful for: I’m feeling very thankful that Brett and YaYu were able to get back to a normal sleep schedule as quickly as they did because they are the ones keeping things going around here, at least the things that need to be done in the morning. Hopefully I can get things back to normal this week.
  • Bonus question: What are your favorite websites for browsing? I don’t ‘browse’ the web very often, but I love any website that has to do with travel, so I sometimes look at Kayak or Expedia or such and put in imaginary destinations just to see how much the airfare would cost from here to there and back. I also love to check out different places on Airbnb, and see what it would cost to stay in different cities around the world. And sometimes I combine the two, and see what a whole trip to a particular destination would cost us! I rarely look at shopping sites, although I probably check out J. Jill every three weeks or so, to see what’s gone on sale. It’s my favorite clothing website, but I don’t think I’ve ever paid full price for anything from them (and even their sale prices can be kind of high, but their clothing lasts). I do read several blogs, but don’t consider that browsing – I have a pretty regular reading schedule for those.

That’s all for this week! How has your week been? What good things happened for you?

Five Frugal Things 4/7/2017

Here are five frugal wins we had at Casa Aloha this past week:

  1. I turn 65 next month, and will begin Medicare. Because it wasn’t an urgent procedure, I decided to postpone this past week’s gastro endoscopy exam until next month because having both Medicare and military insurance coverage (the supplemental) means there will be very little to no out-of-pocket expense. If I had had it done this past week as scheduled, we would have had to pay several hundreds of dollars in co-pays (20% of total costs, and the procedure is expensive on Kaua’i).
  2. I sent Wellesley College’s financial aid office a statement showing the past two years of my student loan payments – they will reduce our family financial obligation.
  3. Our six-month supply of toilet paper arrived this past week from Amazon. By ordering through Prime (free shipping) and using subscribe & save, we pay just 56¢ per roll versus buying at Costco, the least expensive option on the island (73¢/roll). Every little bit of savings helps.
  4. Even with being gone around one-third of March, I still managed to earn 417 bonus Swagbucks, nearly enough again for another $5 in Amazon credit. I make a point of earning my “small goal” every day, which increases my bonus total every month.
  5. We had no food waste this past week. YaYu took leftovers every day for her lunch, and Brett and I ate the rest for our breakfasts and lunches. We always store our leftovers in Pyrex glass containers so we can see what needs to be eaten.

What frugal wins did you have this week?