Friday, May 9, 2014

FOF - Creativity

  We had about 5 days of glorious sunshine this last week. I didn't keep a very detailed list of how we saved... these are just off the top of my head. :)

 - we used our Lowes gift cards to buy lots of pretty flowers for the yard. I ended up spending 4 bucks out of pocket for almost $80 worth of prettiness.
- we used an old filing cabinet to make planters (found the idea on pintrest.) Probably would have been cuter to paint the cabinets but that would have cost money so....)

- I used my 40% off coupon at Hobby Lobby to buy this cute little oogely eyed garden friend. Isn't he cute? I'm in love with snail man.
- made a gift for about 3 bucks using my wood burning kit. I forgot how fun it is! I also made some magnets for my fridge using little pieces of wood, some super glue, and old magnets leftover from a project. I'm already starting to get ideas for our handmade Christmas this year. :)

- wanted a bird bath...couldn't afford I made one! I used an old shallow glass bowl, filled it up with smooth stones and some gems and filled with water. The birds visit it every night - works like a charm! The wind chime is from the dollar tree!

- my handsome hubby made a wood frame out of an old bed and then attached three of the filing cabinet drawers on the top. We are going to paint them and then put a card in the front slot with each of the older kid's names. We filled them with our leftover soil and now each kid has their own raised bed for summer time. :) He's one smart man.

- we found this patio table at the thrift store for $15 dollars and were going to look for some chairs off Craigslist but then realized..."hey, that costs money"  luckily we had these Ikea chairs from our old dining room set. They work just fine.
- found Citronella candle on closeout at the grocery store (supposedly kids shouldn't touch these things because they are toxic? My kids don't touch candles so...score for me!) I'm also thinking about buying one of those bug zapper thingys because the mosquitoes last summer were horrible!

- made Brady this link costume out of things we owned - I only had to buy him the tights :) He is already trying to get his costume ready for Halloween. :) This year we are MAKING them and NO princesses - Trinity says she wants to be a police officer. Wow.

- I've been trying new recipes that use 4 ingredients or less. One of my favorites so far has been this pasta dish. It takes a box of noodles, a can of black olives, sundried tomatoes and some pesto (okay, so that's five ingredients - i couldn't leave out the pesto). I also roasted asparagus with some lemon pepper and threw it in there. It is FANTASTIC and so simple. Another favorite has been to cook some salmon and then chop it up, toss it in leftover jasmine rice and stir in fresh spinach, sundried tomatoes, and pesto. Easy Peasy and the perfect lunch.

- I decorated our basement and made Zac a "World Cup" viewing area for the summer. I used things I already owned to decorate...framed Zac's certificates with some I had with old photos in them, moved some lamps around - it works. . We found this leather couch at the Goodwill Outlet for 18 bucks. I don't just love the area but its"palatable" and Zac appreciates having a space.

- one of the best ways to save money? Stay home. We have occupied ourselves with tea parties, doing our workbooks and reading chapter books, outside play, chores, videos we already own .... saves fuel money and then we aren't as tempted to buy this and that or have to stop for "snacks." :)

I also had two freebies this week. We were at the park up in the mountains and we found Trinity an LL Bean Fleece on a bench. It was pretty dirty and I looked around for the owner - couldn't find one - Zac said "it's ours."
I also found a package of sponges (the NICE kind) in the parking lot in an empty parking space with no cars around. It must have fallen out of someones car. I told Trinity to leave them because maybe someone would come back for them and she looked at me like I was crazy - then we saw a car wanting to park in that space so I told Trin "grab them!" What we do for sponges around here. I always feel so guilty taking something that someone family does NOT however. Our basic rule is if it's very valuable take it into the store - if it's something that's going to be trashed...well, their trash our treasure.
 I also found an iphone in hobby lobby which i took up to the front desk haha - there are limits.

If you want to link up to Finances on Friday here is the link.


  1. What a great idea for the filing cabinets! And, that pasta salad sounds Yum. People must be losing things all over. I found a man's wallet in the grocery cart the other day.

  2. oh i think i am going to copy your idea for the bird bath...i never thought of that...the kids made bird houses at a lowes workshop a few weeks ago...we turned one into a feeder....and we have apair of cardinals that come to eat......i will have to make them the bath.....

  3. Way to get creative with your resources and spend less. Whenever I am "bemoaning" all the beautiful and perfect decor that everyone else seems to have, I remind myself that my citizenship is in heaven and I'm just passing through this terrain. Those personalized gardens that Zac made for the kids is such a great idea....and that flower bed out of a filing cabinet is really quite adorable!

  4. The filing cabinet raised bed is the coolest thing! Love it. And that was a great deal on the flowers. :-)

  5. Loved this post Alyssa! So much goodness! The retro-homemade birth bath, the free flowers, the filing cabinet window box, the wood burning. Super cute sword wielder too.

    But BY FAR my favorite of them all are those adorable, super-cool-idea raised beds for each child. THAT is totally fabulous!