The Frugal Life Newsletter

The Frugal Life
November 12, 2001
123rd issue

o The Frugal Life* (TFL) is published every
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o A Note From Keren
o Air Pockets Reduce Heating Bills– by Gary Foreman

o Your Secret To Success for 2002 –by Doris Dobkins
o Recipes o Readers Needs
o Last Weeks Readers Needs
o Readers Tips
o Disclaimer
o Subscription info

A Note from Keren   So now we have moved the TFL newsletter to Mondays.  It is a better time for me, since I get my husband’s help with the children during the weekend, leaving me more time to work on the website and newsletter.  I have tried to include the link to one of the articles featured a few weeks ago – The Good Mother – by B.G. Markstad, here is the link again and hope this time works – and here it is the link to Toddler Activities   We have received a good number of recipes and I will be working on setting up a page in the next week.  Today we will be featuring two of them under the recipe section.  If you haven’t send your favorite recipe, send it now to editor We will have a good selection of recipes!   I have been driving around my neighborhood, jus to get familiar with my new surroundings and I found another good place to buy cleaning supplies and miscellaneous, if I remember correctly it is called “Just .99 cents”.  The interesting thing about this place is that they also have groceries for 99 cents, like cereal, yogurt, sugar, rice, paper towels, toilet paper, etc.  I was very happy to find such place… I had to call my husband right away and tell him my new finding, LOL   It is good to make money by saving money!   Keren Wells

~~~~~ Air Pockets Reduce Heating Bills– by Gary Foreman   Dear Dollar Stretcher,
Do you have any hints on making windows a little less cold inside? Would
you enclose them with plastic?

Using numbers from the U.S. Department of Energy, I calculated that air
leaks could cost Lori between $50 and $100 this winter. So saving some heat
is certainly a good thought.

Let’s start with the idea that Lori is considering. She’s on the right
track. Air can be used as an insulator.  Storm windows are important
because they create an airspace between the two windows. That pocket of air
will keep the cold air out and the warm air in.

You can use sheet plastic on the inside of your window to create airspace.
It works whether you have storm windows or not. This strategy can reduce
heat loss through the window by 25%. You can attach the sheet plastic to
screen frames, cardboard or wooden frames, or even simply tape it to the
inside of the window opening.

To read the article go to:
Your Secret To Success for 2002
By Doris Dobkins

Have you ever wondered what the secret ingredient is to success
and financial independence? I know I have. I’ve also discovered
it and want to share it with you in this article.

The most successful and financially independent people are goal-
oriented. They clearly define their goals. This allows them to
visualize the future and focus on a plan for prosperity.

I know it is still October but it is not too early to start
thinking about 2002. Do you have a financial plan for next year?
Have you prepared a budget? What do you want to accomplish
financially during the next 12 months?

Financial success begins with a definition of your objectives,
which is a list of what you plan to accomplish. Make them
specific. Make them tangible. To take control of your financial
future, you must not only identify where you are presently but
have a plan that will take you where you want to go as quickly as
possible with maximum satisfaction.

To read the article go to:

=====Advertisement ~~~~~ *******RECIPES Pumpkin Cake –by Mary Forbes  (Thank You Mary!)

1 box angel food cake mix
1-15 oz. can pumpkin
1 t. pumpkin pie spice
1 C. water

Mix the dry angel food cake mix with the remaining ingredients.  Pour into a greased 9×13 pan.  Bake at 350 for 25 minutes.

This cake is delicious and it is a treat for anyone watching their weight.  It is very low in fat.


MACARONI  PIE –by Betty Gibson     (Thank You Betty!)
6-8 c. cooked macaroni
2 jumbo eggs
� stick butter
1 T. Shilling coarse black pepper
3- 4  c. 2%  milk*
2 c. shredded cheddar cheese
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix milk, eggs
and pepper in a bowl. Beat until well blended. In
9 X 13″ ovenproof dish, put a layer of macaroni
in dish, cut up �  of butter in small pieces; lay
on top. Make a sparse layer of shredded cheese.
Pour � of milk mixture over all. Repeat layers
and milk mixture, ending with shredded cheese on
top. Bake for approximately 45 min. until top is
nicely browned and bubbly.

*NOTE: 3-4 cups milk is correct. The milk, eggs,
cheese make a custard around the macaroni!


Chicken Caserole/ Chicken bake –by Susan  (Thank You Susan!)
6 boneless skinnless chicken breasts
1 can chicken broth
1 small bag of pepperidge farm corn bread stuffing
1 can cream of chicken or 1 can cream of mushroom

cook and drain chicken breasts, cut up into bite size pieces. mix chicken with can of cream of chicken sit that aside mix corn bread stuffing and chicken broth, adding 2 tbls of melted butter. mix well. in baking dish spread chicken cream mixture into bottom of dish, next spread cornbread stuffing mixture on top of chicken mixture.  bake in oven for about 10 minutes (or follow cooking time on corn bread stuffing bag. on temperature of 350 degrees.

This is delicious, and its also fast and easy. I look forward to seeing other recipes!

Readers Needs
Q. Hi Keren, I was hoping one of your readers could help me replace a recipe I lost.  I used to make a chocolate and peanut butter cookie that was called “Magic Middle”  cookies.  The chocolate dough surrounded the peanut butter for a cookie that tasted like a peanut butter cup.  I had torn it out of an old magazine and now I have lost that piece of paper. My family would be ever so grateful for your help.  Thanks!  Lorraine,
Send your answers to editor

I am looking for an old fashioned fudge recipe, the kind you cook and bring to a boil, making a little ball in the water.  Thanks –Kathy
Send your answers to editor

Last Weeks Readers Needs

o I love your newsletter & was wondering if anyone knew of a way to make
“homemade” distilled water from tap water.  Possibly boil, then strain
through a coffee filter?  We have hard water & must use distilled in our
humidifier.  Any hints will be appreciated!!!  Thanks, LCR

Read the answers at o  We live in Tennessee, and every year about this time we get ladybugs
coming in our closed windows on the sunny side of the house in the midafternoon.
They don’t really do any harm, but I end up with dead ladybugs all over
the window ledges, floor and live ones crawling on the ceiling (probably
around 100 bugs total each day).  I would rather my 1 yr old twins not eat dead
ladybugs off the floor before I can get to them with the vacuum (the
twins’ room is on that side of the house.)  Do your readers know of any way to
keep them outside where they can do some good?
Read the answers at
Readers Tips

o I have extended the life of shampoo, conditioner, body wash and dish soap by
putting them in pump bottles.  It is easier to control how much you use, and I
find less dried-up product accumulates around the top (as it does on squirt
bottles.)  Many bath & beauty stores sell pumps that work with their products &
other standard size bottles.  Otherwise, I buy the BIG pump bottles of shampoo
& conditioner at the warehouse stores; when it’s empty, I can buy the economy
size dishsoap and use the empty pump bottle. Cheers,
o I make an effort to check the various stores on the day after a holiday
for sales (things are usually at least 50% off).  Lots of these things I
can then use for the following holiday, or save till next year.  Taking
Halloween for example:  I buy little finger rings and things that I save
until next year and give them out.  With our crazy world, parents and
kids are thrilled by these–and I can give out 2 or 3 and it’s still
cheaper than candy (that I eat more than give away).  I also bought a
ton of candy that I will use for Christmas and Valentines day.  I stuck
to hard candy, that wasn’t labeled to look like Halloween.  We will be
able to give out little candy bags to my kid’s friends for gifts, much
cheaper than if waiting for the time to get them.

With a bit of creativity and perseverence you can get lots of little
things to put together to make a nice gift.  For example:  For my kid’s
teachers this year they will get a plastic expansion pocket folder
filled with page dividers, markers, envelopes and other teacher type
stuff that I’ve collected.  I estimate the cost on these will be about
$5, as I got everything on big-time sales throughout the year.

For the Sunday school teachers and other adults that touch their lives,
I found some nice jars at Big Lots (but even a clean jelly jar would
work).  I plan to fill with sugar-cookie makings and attach a recipie. 
I also got some little glass salt & pepper shakers that I will fill with
colored sugar they can sprinkle on the cookies.  Due to sales, etc I
estimate that these will cost about $2 each.  I’ve seen other things
like this for sale for over $5! –Valerie
o  In response to the grocery bill I wanted to add what I think is an important point. Planning a weekly menu to utilize family food consumption I feel is as important as coupons. I have 6 children and spend about 350 a week to feed all eight of us. First I decide how to tie my meals together for adults and younger children. Also how to tie the days together with my meals makes me never have left overs. Meatloaf on Monday flows over into my spaghetti sauce on Tuesday.  Or my potatoes from a roast turn into ‘creamed’ or fried patties the following day. I cook too many hamburgers on purpose because they become tacos or chili the next day.   I always plan my next meal while I am  cooking the present one.  I add my left over morning biscuits cut into small pieces into any casserole  for bread crumbs. The last 4th of the bag of potatoe chips make a great filler here also. I throw away nothing…. I buy 1 can of soup my children like and stretch it with (extra) fresh veggies or frozen ones so we still get the same ‘general’ taste. I mix cereal that they don’t care for (sometimes it is our adult cereal)or unsweetened cheap in with their favorite ‘junky’ sweet kind so it stretches.  I use ramen noodles to stretch our 1 can of ‘chef boy ar dee anything’.  My too ripe bananas become banana bread in a few minutes of time, and if my oven goes on for any reason I always put a large baking potatoe in so it gets done at the same time. My children hate the crust on a sandwich like most young children so I don’t sweat it. I always cut the crust off, dice it, and freeze it together all year. It’s my Thanksgiving dressing, toasted with a little garlic spray it is my croutons for salads and my bread crumbs any other time I need them. –Karen   Please post your questions/answers to our new bulletin board. You can find directions here.


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event shall *The Frugal Life,* Keren Wells, or the
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