A Frugal Friday Fourth of July

I realize that today is a holiday for many of you, but I just couldn’t put off the monthly round-up of tips from the frugalosphere for another week. I know than this means that most of you will not get this until Monday, when you Fireworks Adam Berman return to the office (internet at home is not frugal) but that’s better than waiting until the end of the week, isn’t it?

June was an exciting month as old themes faded into memory and new ones emerged. There was nothing in June worth reporting on toilet paper and toilet paper tubes, nor on laundry detergent.

What was big this month was food. Frugal Upstate shared a recipe for Iced Coffee. (Can you imagine the CEO of Starbucks when he heard the formula got out!) Other tips included freezing the unused whites of eggs in ice cube trays if your recipe calls for only yolks and cutting the sugar called for in cookie recipes in half. They will taste just as good Thrifty Jinxy tells us.

Domestic Cents brought us a great tip for saving money on food. Reduce the portions you serve your kids and water down their drinks. That’s part of a longer list of daily money saving tips that includes one I’ve started practicing myself. "Use bath towels more than once." Times are tough and even us hedge fund types no longer toss them in the trash after a single use. I now keep them for an entire week. I just have my manservant Cato launder and warm them in the oven each morning before use.

And in a well thought out post Think Your Way to Wealth tells us of a hot new trend: raising your own chickens in urban areas. How could that not be more efficient and cheaper than getting your eggs from a giant factory-like poultry farm?

One trend that continues to be hot in the frugalosphere is what we call  the Substance Abuser Lifestyle, or SAL. This month we got a great post from SavingAdvice.com, which listed no fewer than 20 public places where you might find lost coins on the ground, including near vending machines, parking lots, transit stations and the like.

In the same SAL theme, was Wise Bread’s post on Perfectly Respectable Ways To Get A Free Meal, such as giving blood. And speaking of respectability, Serena at Queercents chided readers for thinking that they might not be "food bank worthy". She tells us about a friend of hers in graduate school trying to finish her dissertation who was embarrassed about taking food charity. As Serena puts it "If she’s not one of the “deserving poor,” then who is?" You go girl!

Ideas to frugally make (or otherwise acquire) more money went beyond finding coins on the pavement. One Frugal Girl presented for discussion the idea of holding a baby or bridal shower and then returning all the gifts. Moorea at Queercents gave many of us an idea for a new side business when she asked Why Is Donor Sperm So Expensive? Apparently it can go for as much as $1000 a "pop" to the socially infertile.

And finally her grace The Frugal Duchess shared a list of things to do while waiting for your flight at the airport. Some were a little offbeat, such as the advice to bring your own book to read with you on the trip, but one caught my eye.  You can exercise. Moving walkways can be used as treadmills. Luggage makes an excellent substitute for free weights. In fact, with all this workout equipment available so close to home, why join an expensive gym? Running from security to the gate with bags too expensive to check can be a full cardio workout. And squeezing into a coach seat for an hour or two easily qualifies as frugal yoga.

[Photo Adam Berman]

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