Tuesday, March 6, 2012

A Dollar Does It

Apparently three days without blogging has distressed a few of my readers. My apologies. To make up for it, I will try to post two smaller entries today. I do the majority of blogging at work, so some days it's important for me to get some actual work done. Gotta keep the man off your back!

First, lets chat about weekend spending!

Saturday Total Spent:
Lucky's Bed&Biscuit: $21.67 (Molly nail trim & ear cleaning)

Sunday Total Spent:
Family Dollar: $5.35
Acme: $16 ish

For some reason, our last two dogs (Molly & Wheatie) hate to have their feet touched. They immediately pull away even if you touch the top of their foot. Unfortunately, that means at-home nail clippings are out of the question, especially for Molly, who is extra wiggly.

In the spirit of supporting our local businesses, I chose to spend a bit more money & took her to Lucky's Bed & Biscuit, instead of our local Petsmart. Just a personal choice, though, and one that might change in the future!

Then we went for a 3 mile walk at the Barnegat Branch Trail, which was completely free! Afterwards, we did nothing all day, which was also free.

Sunday started my first phase of spring cleaning. I decided to tackle the kitchen and commenced with the sweeping, mopping, and scrubbing of it all. We took a quick trip to Walmart where I scooped up a $5 candle (Raspberry Sangria) to help the kitchen smell like spring (it worked). During the cleaning, I decided I wanted to de-scale our Keurig. I looked up the instructions on Keurig's website, but unfortunately, I didn't have enough vinegar in the house. A quick trip to the dollar store fixed that.

I never used to shop at the dollar store, but lately, I've found that they have a great selection of products at competitive prices. Did you know you can also use coupons at some stores? I just learned that! Definitely have to keep that tidbit in reserve for the future. On this trip, I picked up a gallon of white vinegar for just $1.25. I also purchased my favorite dishwasher detergent (which I can't seem to find anywhere else) - Palmolive ECO+ for $2.50. My last purchase was a pack of glitter Easter eggs for $1.00. You'll see what I did with them later.

Not only did the vinegar aide in cleaning the Keurig, it also helped me clean out the oven! I found this "recipe" for a natural oven cleaner - even though I don't have borax in the house, I decided the powerful combo of baking soda & vinegar would probably do the trick. I painted the mixture all over the inside of the oven with an old paintbrush then let it sit for about an hour. With just a scrubby sponge and a little extra elbow grease, I was able to get rid of any burnt-on food with no toxic fumes making us sick or hanging around our food. I've also used the baking soda/vinegar combination to clear out the sink and tub pipes. It's such a multi-purpose cleaning tool and so inexpensive!

Sunday also consisted of a trip to Acme for produce. I've been hesitant to buy fruits & veggies in bulk at BJ's because I don't want them to go bad, but since I've been trying to eat healthier, I think I'll stock up next time. These $10-$15 mini-trips are probably more expensive in the long run.

Here is what I did with my $1 Easter eggs:

I've really enjoyed decorating to the seasons in our house. It makes everything cheerier, but can be expensive. The dollar store has proved to be the best way to dress up the kitchen & downstairs bathroom without breaking the bank. Total spent for this project was only the $1 I paid for the Easter eggs. I already had the dip tray & the mini candle. I bought those cloth napkins a few months ago at Kohl's for a mere 0.89 cents. Even the hubs said he liked it!

Have you had success at the dollar store lately? Any tips I should know?


  1. I love the dollar store. The only thing I am usually a little hesistant to buy is actual food. However, my fiancee who researches everything before he buys it- told me that the same canned goods they have in the 99 cents store are sold in the grocery store. He even pointed out the expiration dates, which were sometime in the 2015's.

    I never really understood people who purchase gift bags from the Hallmark store-- and pay like $6 per bag (THE BAGS ARE $1 AT THE DOLLAR STORE!).

  2. The dollar store is great for cute, cheap paper products! I really don't go there often, but any time I have a party and don't want to deal with cleaning up actual dishes, I go straight to the Dollar Tree. I've also found some nice clear, plastic trays and bowls for serving snacks and appetizers there.

    Oh, and I use the same dishwashing detergent as you, I'll have to check the dollar store for that as well. I'm pretty sure it usually runs us $3.50 or more at Shoprite.

  3. Steph,

    If it helps, I buy it at Family Dollar. I haven't seen it at our other dollar store in town, Dollar General. If you don't have either of those stores by you, then I'm no help at all ;-)

  4. There's a Family Dollar by my parents' house, which is only 15 minutes from my house. I'll have to check it out next time I'm up that way!