It’s been awhile since ere I wrote that word! Mr. Frugalwoods and I had so many things we were bursting to share with you at the beginning of the new year that the ol’ Weekly Woot & Grumble hasn’t been very weekly of late. Never ye mind, mateys, we’re here today with one of the most rambling of my rambly Woot & Grumbles!
Mr. FW made homemade blueberry pancakes last weekend and they were scrumptious! And thrifty as heck! Can’t beat made from scratch. Am I right, frugal peeps?
Mr. and Mrs. FW in the Sun
We’re headed out to balmy San Diego tomorrow to spend the week visiting with my parents, my sister and brother-in-law, my brother and sister-in-law, my nieces, nephew, and whatever the equivalent is of nieces and nephews who happen to be dogs.
As I mentioned last month, we make this trek to the west coast every January. Why January? Because it’s the absolute cheapest time to fly. None of these pricey Christmas week flights for us, we’d rather celebrate on the frugal weirdo schedule.
I’ve divulged many of our deepest, darkest frugal travel hacks in the past, so I’ll just give the quick-n-dirty rundown of ways we’re saving money on this trip:
- First and foremost: those cheap flights! $216/person round-trip from Boston to San Diego. BAM.
- No checked bags. That’s $100 saved right there for one checked bag per person round-trip.
- We’ll bring our own food to the airport, thus avoiding the outrageously priced vittles vended in the terminal. I’d wager that’s $50 saved, if you take into account both legs of the journey.
- Dearest Frugal Hound is staying for free at our fantastic greyhound friends’ house. Boarding her for the duration of our trip would cost a whopping $400 (the kennel near us, which we’ve never actually used, is $50/night), so we are deeply grateful to our friends!
- For everyone keeping score, that’s $550 saved, without even accounting for the savings we reaped on the flights, which we calculated is $693.60 over a Christmas-week flights, thus bringing our total amount saved to: $1,243.60!
Advance planning is what really yields frugal travel. All of these elements require us to think ahead and prepare, but it’s a worthy trade-off for the money we’ll save. I prefer a smooth and organized sojourn myself, so the prep work of making our food, packing carefully, and booking flights strategically is all just part of the process for me.
Next Week On Frugalwoods
Never fear, we won’t leave you in the lurch next week while we’re off gallivanting! I’m delighted to share that we’ll be hosting a marvelous guest post from Mr. 1500 of 1500 Days to Freedom and a very special Frugal Hound Sniffs from Kassandra of More Than Just Money. Be sure to check them out next week on Frugalwoods!
Let’s Get Social
I took the opportunity during my idyllic few days off over the holidays to
mess up ramp up our social media exploits. Thus, I formally invite you to follow me on Twitter, like me on Facebook, pin me (?) on Pinterest, and insta me (?) on Instagram.
Please tell me there aren’t any other outlets I need to create an account for… Frugal Hound is not living up to her duties as assigned as our social media manager.
The whole experience was a bonanza of Frugal Hound photos and me clomping my way through how to use all of these social, local, vegan, free range, mobile, gluten-free, new-fangled platforms, but you can now watch a video of Frugal Hound on Instagram. So, we can all rest assured that the world is a better place. And, truth be told, I am having a lot of fun posting even more photos! Though I’m
definitely probably going to be banned from Instagram for spamming the world with greyhound photos.
I want to take a moment in the midst of this especially incongruous Woot & Grumble to give a hearty shout out to all of our new Canadian readers (as well as the wonderful Canadian readers who’ve been with us from the beginning). This week, a plethora of folks hailing from that great country signed up for our Frugalwoods email list and we’re just thrilled–thank you!
I imagine this surge is due to the mention Frugalwoods received in The Globe and Mail earlier this week, but maybe it’s actually a product of the fact that Canadians have impeccable taste. Mr. FW is very enthusiatic about Canada as a whole and proclaimed this evening, “if i could be born in any country other than the US, it would be Canada!” I’ll add that to his to-do list for him…
Our Other Readers Are Awesome Too!
It’s not just Canadians who are fabulous, everyone who reads Frugalwoods is fabulous! How do I know this? Because you all have left some astoundingly helpful, insightful, and thoughtful comments over these past few weeks.
We’ve been blown away by the response to my post about not buying clothes, our 2014 savings rate, and our future homestead budget. It’s incredibly rewarding to receive such astute (and hilarious) feedback and I appreciate that you take the time not only to read, but to share your thoughts as well. If you’ve never commented on a post before, I invite you to do so today!
The most humorous comment award of the week (this might become a new Woot & Grumble feature) goes to reader Tarynkay who, after very kindly giving me detailed advice on how to cut my own hair, listed the final step in the hair-cutting process as “If you hate it [the home haircut], drink a glass of wine and read something inspiring about feminism. Remember that it is winter so you can wear a lot of hats for awhile.” Sage wisdom, my friends.
Thank you for your emails too! I love getting emails from readers (especially when they contain cute pet photos, as I received this week) and I encourage you to get in touch (firstname.lastname@example.org) anytime you have a question, suggestion, or just want to say hi (or send me cute pet photos…).
We’ve got a muffler down! The exhaust system fell off our dear old Frugalwoods-mobile (who recently turned 19-years-old). It was one of those moments when we took profound comfort in the fact that our mechanic is a mere few blocks from our house.
I sloowwwwwly inched Frugalwoods-mobile over there last week and, they were able to fit her out with a brand new exhaust system from the catalytic converter back (muffler, flex pipe, mounting brackets–the works) for a mere $380, which included a used–but good condition–catalytic converter. One of the bummers of our current city home is that we have no driveway and no garage and hence, nowhere to work on the car ourselves.
We know the FW-mobile won’t run forever, but we’d certainly like to eek out a few more good years if we can. This particular vintage of Honda Odyssey (the 1996) turns out to be the best year for the Odyssey. We see other ’96s on the road with more frequency that you might expect, given their advanced age. She’s now purring like Frugal Hound when you rub her ears, so I’d say crisis averted. The Frugalwoods-mobile lives on into 2015!