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Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Hey Hay!

In the spirit of Katy at the Nonconsumer Advocate, I felt compelled to write about some things I do to save money. Somehow the stars or scheduling aligned so that I have another Tuesday off this week--two weeks in a row! Didn't Mary Poppins have "every other Tuesday off"? Since last week was mostly about taking care of me, a large part of today is about taking care of my family and household (plus a Dr's appt. to discuss that darned LDL cholesterol and a phone date planned with a sweet friend).

I shared my plans for the day with G1 and G2: stops at the discount grocery store, feed store, and local tofu outlet store ($1.25 per lb compared to $2.75 in the grocery store). My plan was to combine everything into the most efficient batching of errands and shortest route to save on gas and driving. As I dropped the boys off at school (Tuesday and Thursday are our car days due to ballet pick-up), G2 happened to mention that there were bales of hay in the library left over from a school event last weekend and selling for $5 each. Since hay has recently gone up to $9.99 at the feed store, and our chickens go through a bale per month for coop bedding, this gave me pause. Hmm...

After running a few of the errands (and finding sales on dog food and chicken feed), I headed back to school to check on any remaining hay bales. I had to ask several people, but finally happened on the volunteer coordinator of the event who said "Please! Take them! They're on the back loading dock." Around the back I went, to discover three GIANT bales, twice the size of those at the feed store--and for free! How to fit them in the car?...

Well, I soon discovered (the car was also full of the dog, animal food, groceries, and books I'm planning on selling at some point) there was only one place one giant bale would fit: the back seat. Somehow I wrestled it in there, thankful that I've been doing my push-ups lately. I had to drive home and return again for a second bale--about an additional 5 miles round trip. I left the last bale for another mom who said that she could use one too. I was covered in hay, but happy--that's easily 3 months of bales, maybe even 4, a savings of $30-$40. On the way back the second time, I stopped at the garden store and spent a little of the savings on kale and salad blend seeds. Hurray!

Car included in the background for perspective--these bales are towering!

It may be time to vacuum out the car, before driving the ballet carpool...what do you think?

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