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    Frugal Moment: Ingenuity and Good Deals

    April 28, 2006 by Brandy Vencel

    I love the idea of being frugal, but I am not one of those super shopper types. My dear friend Grace will always give my kids little outfits {brand new!} that she paid a dollar for, and I am always baffled, because buying an outfit that cheap means one must actually go into a store, and I’m just not sure I’m willing to do that.

    So, in my little world, frugality usually means “do-it-myself.” This means I made our wedding invitations, the birth announcements for both kids, and I know how to use odds and ends to make a scrapbook on the cheap. This also means that I have my eyes peeled for someone to teach me to make A.’s sundresses.

    BBookcaseut Si is a totally different animal. He’s not a super shopper, because he doesn’t go shopping enough. But he has this knack. I don’t exactly know what to call it, but I know two of my prized possessions are because of this wheeling and dealing quality of his.

    First, for Mother’s Day a few years back, he bought me a beautiful, solid-wood cupboard with locking glass doors, and there is a real key to open it with. This was a real Indian-in-the-Cupboard-Moment, I tell you! KeyI store all of my best hardbound volumes in it, and they look beautiful! There is a story behind this piece, too. The people he bought it from won it on The Price is Right back in the 1980s. He only paid $100.

    Exercise BikeSecond, there is my exercise bike, which Si bought at a garage sale for $10. He wasn’t even intending to go to a garage sale that day, but he was out and he happened to drive by one that was selling an exercise bike that was just what I wanted, and unbelievably cheap. I had picked one out online for $250 after despairing of ever finding one used in the Penny Saver ads.

    So you see, it comes in handy to have a man with a good eye.

    Saturday update: It seems this post has motivated Si to conquer our bunkbed hopes on the cheap as well. He had an almost-success this morning. I will be sure and post a photo if he ever brings some home!


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  • Reply kristie May 1, 2006 at 2:35 pm

    That cupboard is awesome! I’m “pea-green with envy!” =)

  • Reply Brandy April 28, 2006 at 9:07 pm

    The bike is fairly new, though I should have shown it to you last time you were here, and I forgot. It’s a little squeaky, but it works and it pretty much sat in someone’s garage for years without being used. Grace was here the day Si brought it home, so she helped me go crazy on it with the Lysol wipes. 🙂

    If you like them so much, you really should come visit them. They are even cuter in person. 🙂

  • Reply Grace April 28, 2006 at 6:07 pm

    Brandy: I don’t normally have a “good eye” for things like that. I have to say that kids stuff are WAY cheaper than adult stuff, especially when it’s on sale. I love it because that means I can get more stuff for your kids, who I JUST ADORE SO MUCH!

  • Reply rebecca April 28, 2006 at 5:09 pm

    I’m with you- I just don’t have the eye for yardsale items. I know I shop too much and I know I miss out on better deals because I don’t really enjoy digging through junk to find treasure.

    Is the bike a new find?

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