A Week in the Life of the Frugal Family

I've mentioned before that we have a massive case of DIY Syndrome. We hate to pay anyone to do something we can do ourselves. Recently we had a week that demonstrated this perfectly.

On Sunday afternoon, Frugaldad got out his Lansky set and sharpened all my kitchen knives, plus a pocket knife or two.

On Monday night, we wielded nippers and loppers and pruned our 15+ fruit trees, plus some shrubs that were interfering with a couple of the fruit trees. The kids gathered up the branches and piled them up for a future Saturday afternoon bonfire. It got dark before we finished clean-up so the kids finished the next afternoon.

Tuesday night, Frugaldad replaced a burned-out signal light on his car and a burned-out daytime runner light on his pick-up.

Wednesday night, he did some plumbing in the new kitchen, tightening up fittings, etc. Then he replaced the gasket and flapper assembly in the toilet in the kids' bathroom.

Thursday, he worked late.

Friday, he took the day off work and spent all day applying cherry plywood skins to the exteriors of the cabinets in the new kitchen.

Saturday, he applied more plywood skins. Late Saturday night, I dried a cast-iron skillet on the stove and when I turned off the burner, the light stayed lit. So we flipped the breaker and went to bed.

Sunday, he unstuck the stuck switch on the back of the stove panel so we'd have a properly functioning stove again. Then he also diagnosed the problem with the garage door that I have been manually opening and closing all winter long.

So there it is. Every single day he did something handy that we could have hired someone else to do for us. (Except, of course, that night he worked late. That was earning the money we saved by doing all this stuff ourselves.) I don't even know how much money we saved by doing all this stuff ourselves, but I know it costs at least $75 just to get someone in the door to look at a broken appliance or plumbing fixture. I can't emphasize enough how valuable these kinds of skills are.

We just got back from a great vacation, so I will get a post with lots of pictures up sometime soon. Like when the vacation laundry is finished.