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Homemade Hand Soap

Homemade hand soap and canning jar soap dispenser

Grated bar of soap in a stock pot

Blending it to get the right consistency

As promised, I’m back to tell you how I successfully made my own hand soap recently. I found the recipe on Pinterest, but tweaked it a little to what should be a foolproof method for everyone.  Also, at the end of this post, I will show you where to go to learn how to turn a canning jar into a soap dispenser–a double dose of fun!

I am going to read your minds and answer three questions about making hand soap before you ask them: yes, it works great, yes it’s cost-saving and yes, it was easy!  Although I’ve listed four ingredients here, it really can be made with two simple ingredients–a bar of soap and water.



Starbucks Frappuccino

You might be wondering what Starbucks frappuccino is doing as a topic on a Thrifty Thursday.  Starbucks is anything but thrifty.  Even with coupons, these little jars can cost more than I’m willing to spend.  But they are oh, so good!  So here’s my thrifty solution – make it yourself! (more…)


Refill Swiffer Wet Jet Bottles

I love my Swiffer wet jet.  I don’t like the cost of replacement cleaning solution.  For the longest time, I thought they were impossible to open, refill and close again.  But one day, I was able to unscrew it without a problem.  So now I refill my wet jet bottles with Pine-sol and water.  If you need a little help opening the bottle, try this method on YouTube. (more…)


It’s Salsa Time!

Harvesting the salsa vegetables

One of our biggest tomatoes so far

Reddened jalepeno, habenero and cayenne peppers

From the garden to the table, homemade salsa doesn’t get any fresher than this!

I would give you Anthony’s salsa recipe if I could, but I can’t. It’s not that it’s a big family secret, it’s that he really doesn’t have one. But, I will tell you what I know. I know that it consists of tomatoes, bell peppers, onions, juice from a lime, garlic, salt, cilantro, and hot peppers (i.e. Jalepenos) to taste. He cuts the vegetables, puts them in our food processor and starts playing with it till he gets the flavor he’s looking for–he does have a certain order that he adds them to the food processor, but that gets beyond my range of expertise.



Affordable Fabric and the Throw Pillow Challenge

I’ve long been a fan of Premier Print’s fabrics, but only recently did I find out that they had their own website. Thanks to my talented designer friend, Rachel Halvorson, and her blog post tip on Nest Egg, I can now shop to my heart’s content from Premier’s full selection, which may be a good or a bad thing.  The good thing is that a majority of their prints are under $10 a yard, the bad thing is that makes them all the more tempting to stock up on!

To me, Premier’s fabrics are the perfect balance between modern and traditional, which serves me well as my taste falls somewhere in between those two places.  Nearly all their patterns are subtle, tasteful and understated, without being bland or boring.  So, I recently ordered a shocking amount of samples from their website and am determined to choose from one of Premier’s fabrics to recover my bland, chocolate brown velvet down Ikea throw pillows (that was a lot of adjectives in one sentence).  Stay tuned to see how I do!

If you’re looking for Premier’s Prints at an even better deal, try Fabric.com and just search “Premier.”  And here’s another tip: their samples are cheaper than Premier’s. (:

Now, here are some highlights from their selection:

A little Southwest, handwoven influence, without the hefty pricetag…



DIY Message Center

I used plexiglass for the writing surface

I used scrapbooking supplies to embellish

Magnetic clips hold the center together

For a while, I looked for a message center that had all the things I wanted.  I had my eye on a Pottery Barn one, but found it WAY too expensive for my budget.  We had a piece of plexiglass sitting around and I thought, hmmm, that would make a nice message center.  So I assembled my supplies and got to work. (more…)


Making Cloth Diapers

Pocket diapers made from old t-shirts

Pocket diaper with insert

A look at the pocket

When I was pregnant with my daughter, a friend of mine was really into making her own cloth diapers and she convinced me to make my own.  Because we were living in Germany, cloth diapers were expensive and we didn’t have as many choices and disposables were expensive too.   So I embarked on the diaper making journey of a lifetime.  (more…)


Creating an Emergency Fund

Last summer, my husband and I listened to Dave Ramsey on CD.  After listening to him, we felt empowered to take control of our spending and start saving.  After almost a year, we have created some good habits, but I wouldn’t say that we’re as frugal as we really could be. (more…)



Written by
May 24, 2011 | Saving Money, Tip Tuesday | Tags: , , ,

When I started couponing, I didn’t know about rainchecks.  Of course, I had heard of them, but I had no idea how to use them.

So here’s how to use them and keep in mind that not every store will issue a raincheck, but it never hurts to ask. (more…)


Inexpensive Yarn

Written by
May 19, 2011 | Thrifty Thursday | Tags: , ,

If you like to knit or crochet, you’ve found out by now that making it isn’t always the cheapest way.  It’s about the process, not so much about saving money.  But I have found that home made gifts are really fun to do and saving money on yarn does help. (more…)

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