A 19-post collection

Frugality Check: Benefits of line-drying

I’ve been cleaning my house, lately [it’s mostly OK now BTW] and in the process, I have been doing absolute shittons of laundry. Y'know, mostly because there were drifts of dirty clothes in there that were a foot deep.

I had been doing a load a day, but thanks to my unsister, Powerhouse, I’ve been going through load after load after load. And putting it all on the clothesline to benefit from the absolutely vicious summer sun.

I haven’t been benefitting from said summer sun, I’m as red as a beet and sore to boot.


There are distinct advantages to using a clothesline rather than a dryer. And here they are:

1) it’s quieter
2) sunlight is free
3) it’s exercise [try pegging up a wet doona and tell me I’m wrong]
4) sunlight kills all of the bed-loving pests that make us itch
5) the smell of sun-dried cloth is practically orgasmic
6) it uses less electricity
7) it can be a social activity
8) there are no tiny dust particles floating through your house and causing breathing problems as a direct result. 

Yes, it’s old-fashioned, but that doesn’t automatically mean that it’s bad. Yes, it takes some effort, but I’d take people power over fossil fuel any day. All people power needs is food for fuel, and you can grow your own (see previous posts). And yes, you do need to keep an awareness of the weather.

You are also allowed to keep a dryer for the wet weather. Just because you’re going frugal doesn’t mean you have to throw out everything that ever cost money.

Consider this, though: The average Hills Hoist can hold about four loads of washing. A dryer can only contain one. On a hot day, a load can be dry before you’ve finished hanging up the second one. Dryers always take ages.

Just remember to be sun safe, okay?

Mince Soup

This is another one of those “primary ingredient plus whatever you have lying around” recipes. Again, it’s just a few ingredients away from being a stew.

You will need these tools:

1 big pot
1 ladle or spoon for stirring
1 handy heat source like a cooktop

You will need these ingredients:

about 500g mince of your choice
sauces/flavour/herbs/spices to taste
thickening or noodles optional


half-fill your pot with water and set

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Slow-cooker Glop

This one’s for the busy people. Slow cookers are handy little gadgets that allow one to, say, set up a pot roast before you leave for work.

Everything I cook in my slow cooker always ends up as Glop

You will need these tools:

1 slow cooker
1 thing to make it go
1 thing to serve/stir
1 method of cooking rice

You will need these ingredients:

500g protein of your choice, preferably in bite-sized chunks
1-2 jars of

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Sausage Soup

This is another one of those “scratch” recipes, in which you scratch together whatever you have going and put it in a pot.

You will need these tools:

1 big pot
1 handy heat source, like a cooktop
1 big spoon/ladle
1 knife or other means of chopping things 

You will need these ingredients:


The quantity of these is up to you. Optional extras include: soup mix, rice, potatoes/potato powder, and

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Fried Rice? So Nice!

At last! A recipe with more than just vague hints [seriously, we’re on the internet. You should know how to google stew recipes] and some actual directions.

You will need these tools:

1 large cooking container. Woks are great, but you don’t have to have them
1 means of cooking rice. Rice cookers are great, etc. etc.
1 or more handy heat source(s) like a cooktop
1 big sturdy spoon or spatula. Trust me, I mean it

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How to Stretch a Stew

There are as many recipes for stew as there are people who cook it. You might like a different kind of stew, but the core is the same:

* A lot of water
* Some kind of key protein [meat is traditional, but not necessary]
* Lots of vegetables
* Thickening

One of the key ideals of stew is that it can be stretched. You might portion yours up and freeze it straight after it’s cooked, but even then, you can stretch one portion

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Budget Busting in the Kitchen

Many of you know a few tricks, but these are some of mine. If you only have a little left to spend on food after taking care of all those bills, you need to make it stretch. And you also need to make sure you get a balanced diet. We’ve all heard the urban myth about the college kid who made a buttload of porridge etc. etc.

Anyway, over the next few days I’ll be sharing some budget-stretching

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This is a family recipe that can be traced back to MeMum [Hi!] who could not make tuna rissoles to save her life. After a very trying day, she just gave up and fried the entire mess and called it Tuna Glop.

I’ve changed things around a bit and created All Purpose Glop

You will need these tools:

1 mixing bowl
1 method of mixing
1 satisfyingly enormous frying pan
1 spatula or big spoon
1 handy heat source, like

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Compost Hint: Empty Your Mulch Bucket Often

Composting and mulching is a natural process involving organic waste. And as such, it is almost inevitable to attract… little visitors.

Insect visitors.

That lay eggs in your mulch bucket.

I don’t want to be too gross about things [hence the lack of instructional pictures] but I’ve been a little too busy, sore and tired to go empty the mulch bucket into the compost bin, these last few days.

That bit me in the butt.

Big time.

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Final installment! For now, anyway. Last steps of prepping the planters is to place a the cloth over the stones to prevent soil escaping the...

Final installment! For now, anyway.

Last steps of prepping the planters is to place a the cloth over the stones to prevent soil escaping the planter. You can also use any old rag that comes to hand, or dryer fluff if it doesn’t.

I put the lid back on to stop the local wildlife from stealing the cloth.

Why not just put cloth in the bottom, you may ask. Well, stones aid drainage and give water a path to escape.

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Welcome back, frugal freedom fighters. This post is showing you the basic preparations for a planter box, or set thereof. The tools for...

Welcome back, frugal freedom fighters. This post is showing you the basic preparations for a planter box, or set thereof.

The tools for today are some cheap plastic gutter mesh [the stuff you put in gutters to keep the leaves out] a pair of decent scissors [if you bought wire mesh, use side-cutters!] and the paperclip staples I showed you how to make last time.

Step 1: Measure the mesh to fit, but make sure it fits up the sides of the

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I’ve learned some things about tumblr, now, so this is a two-parter. Should I make you wait for part 2? We’ll see. I initially...

I’ve learned some things about tumblr, now, so this is a two-parter. Should I make you wait for part 2? We’ll see.

I initially wanted the boxes and setup closer to the washing line [it made sense to me] but hubby put the whole box and dice on some bare-ish earth at the other corner of the house. As you can see from the tool set, it’s going to get weird.

If you don’t

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My Continuing Adventures in Frugal Freedom Finding

Keep in mind that I’m rounding out prices and, for everyone’s protection, I am obscuring the shops’ names. Clever readers will be able to figure it out in no time at all, I am certain.

As I write this, I have recently returned from a mat-hunt. Anyone who’s played WoW and does not want to spend a fortune at the Auction House knows what that’s about. You go out grinding for materials, or

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Finding the Raw Materials - My Adventures in Frugality for Freedom

This Saturday was the day I was supposed to change everything. Or start changing everything.

The ONLY farmer’s market I could find nearby operated one Saturday out of every month. Odd, I thought, but I thought I made it understood that we’d be going together to get infos.

The day dawned and Hubby volunteered to look after the kids whilst I ventured forth on my ownsome.

Like shit, I said, and bullied the kids and my main squeeze

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Economies of Scale

So I revealed to hubby my determination to grow our own fruit and veg, yesterday (I write these in advance, so I don’t have to fret about having something to write about) and offered him some input into the process. He said, grow tomatoes, carrots and lettuce.

Lettuces like things so swampy, I was thinking about a hydroponics setup, so I don’t drown the tomatoes and carrots.

If you don’t buy a kit and grow them

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