I’m adding a weekly segment to the throes of other blogger weekly segments – and it’s called Frugal Save Friday!
Frugal Save Friday is my opportunity to reflect back on the week and post about an instance of frugality (or lack thereof). I think that frugality, and thriving in the raggedly rich ethos, is a lifestyle. It’s not a crash-diet – it’s a specific, purposeful, focused way to live your life. It’s natural for some, and a goal for others. I was set-up pretty well for a thrifty, raggedly rich life by the fundamental understanding of money that my parents instilled in me. But I still think it’s important to reflect back on each week and identify the things that worked, and things that didn’t. Things that were successful, and things that… could use some work. So without further ado, my very first Frugal Save Friday post!
This Week’s Highlight: Mum to the Rescue
On Wednesday, I went in to work my 4-hour joe-job shift with a water bottle and a small container of nuts. I made a wrap the night before so I could eat it for breakfast – a 10:30am start is early morning for me, and if I’m going to survive 4 hours I’m going to need something more substantial than my usual banana and instant coffee.
Unfortunately, one of the people who was slated for an 8-hour shift was in the midst of a pretty head-foggy sickness. She hadn’t been feeling well the day previous, but couldn’t get a hold of anyone that could cover the shift. I really should’ve anticipated that I might be asked to stay longer – alas, you live and learn. Within the first 30 minutes I was asked if I could stay for a full shift (technically 7.5, with a break), and my only hesitation came from the fact I had no food with me.
I work at a mall, where there’s a pretty broad fast food court. There’s almost everything you could want, ranging from the semi-healthy to the super unhealthy. But having spent the past weekend being generously hosted by American friends, and exploring the variety of food in their home city of the South, I sort-of reached my eating-out limit.
Thankfully, my Mum has Wednesday’s off, and I heard her leave in the morning for the usual mid-week errands of… things. I called her cell from work in the hopes she was near-by / hadn’t yet done the lunch meat shopping. In ten minutes she was at the store (she’d been in the mall already), and, being the amazing Mum she is, agreed to pick some bread, meat, and cheese up for me from the Polish store when she headed there, and bring it to me for lunch. (We buy our lunch meats and some special cheeses from the Polish store, as well as mixes and other polish-things from the homeland. They make all their meat in-house, and feature bread from a bakery that’s made fresh each day. Delicious, and a bit more expensive, but definitely worth it.)
If I had known that I would be staying through lunch, I would’ve packed my own food – a sandwich, or some leftovers. My Mum saved the day by bringing by the groceries we would’ve had in the house anyways, and enabling me to make my own sandwiches in the backroom. She even brought enough for everyone else working (cause she’s the most amazing, generous person in the world)!
I saved at least $10 by not getting something from the food court, and I’d say the sandwiches were way healthier than anything I could find up there anyway. I also made a few extra bucks by extending my shift 3.5 hours, so I not only saved, I generated more income! Plus, the sick one wasn’t required to stay on beyond covering our lunch break, so I hope she was able to get some rest.
I’m so lucky that my parents share my views on money and food – my Mum is a huge supporter of avoiding the food court, and was more than happy to help me out of my bind.
Notable moments of thrifty frugal saves:
- buying a steamed milk from Starbucks at the airport and adding in my own instant coffee for an instant latte (blasphemy to some of you, but it was great!)
- $3 round-trip bus fare from the international airport, to get to the $15 round-trip state bus, which saved me at least $250 in airfare
- brought my own instant coffee in a travel mug to a coffee date at the mall – I prefer instant to Timmy Ho’s and saved $2!
- I also packed everything into my awesome multi-use backpack – no checked baggage fees, and no waiting for my bags to arrive and getting stuck in customs lines!
Notable moments of thrifty frugal fails:
- I cut up an apple and some carrots, and took a wrap with me to eat on the plane, heading into the States – but since the apple contains seeds, and I didn’t leave the product sticker on it (and the fact you go through customs at the airport on the Canadian side before you get on the plane, instead of when you land in America), my apple got confiscated and thrown out. Attempt at being thrifty and frugal on a plane: failed
- buying a steamed milk from Starbucks to make an instant latte – a moment of weakness, I didn’t actually need it, wasn’t really tired / thirsty, but I wanted to buy something
- somehow my cell used up 0.01MB of data while in the US, despite roaming being turned off – I got charged $5 for the data (but contacted support and they reversed the charges, so maybe it isn’t such a fail?)