Frugal Friday

Frugality has always been a part of my life and I learned from the best. My Mom and Dad both emigrated to the United States from Italy. They both had to go to work at an early age to help support their families.

My Dad worked hard at building custom homes to keep our family of 5 girls supplied with needs and some wants, and Mom was a whiz at making amazing Italian meals out of simple ingredients.

With the example of Mom and Dad, I have learned over the years to be frugal with certain things in order to allow other little luxuries in my life. For example, my hubby absolutely loves those small ice cream cups as an evening snack and they are not cheap. It is a small thing but I don’t bust the budget buying them for him because by habit I save money in other ways.

Although I’m not an extreme couponer, I do search out and use coupons, and using a store loyalty card also has its perks. Our local Safeway grocery store still doubles the face value of a coupon up to $1.00 and will accept a store coupon plus a manufacturer coupon for the same item.

Last week I snagged a 5 quart Crock Pot® with digital controls  for only $17.99 at Fry’s grocery store. I particularly wanted a slow cooker that had more settings than my almost 20-year-old model, including a “warm” setting. This new Crock Pot® fills my needs and wants, and then some!

I have been an avid reader all my life and can still hear my Mom telling me that I can’t read my book at the dinner table. When e-readers first came out, I truly did not think I would like them because I love everything about real books: the smell of a new book, turning each page, just the feel of it in my hand. But as my body has succumbed to that old meanie, Arthuritis, it was becoming  more difficult to hold a book in my hands long enough to read more than a page at a time.

Enter the Nook Color, which my hubby gave me last winter. I have truly enjoyed my Nook from the first time I held it in my hands and it is now a joy to read again. E-books do not necessarily cost less than real books but I have found places online where I have downloaded e-books for free or almost-free. In light of this frugal Friday, here are my recommendations (I’m sure there are others but these are the ones I am aware of right now):


If you’re also frugal and have an e-reader, where do you find inexpensive or free e-books?