Author Archives: Frank & Muriel Newman

A Frugal Christmas

So what does the frugal family do with those well-intentioned gifts that are not really wanted or needed? Here are some suggestions: • Sell them and save the money or use it to buy something you do need. • Give them away as a present to someone else – but be careful not to give […]

Sensational seaweed

Seaweed is a sensational source of goodness and is well known to the frugal gardener. Less well known is its use in the frugal kitchen. There are lots of good things about seaweed – the main one being that it’s free! It can be collected while on a family outing to the beach. One lucky […]

The renting economy and free stuff

We have heard about AirBNB and the way it is changing the accommodation industry by connecting individuals, but less well known is the growth in what’s called the ‘sharing economy’. TVNZ’s Seven Sharp did a short piece on it recently, which showed how popular and diverse the sharing economy has become. In general terms, the […]

Money wise measures

Let’s face it – sometimes we make life hard for ourselves because of bad money habits. But there are actually lots of simple things we can do to get our finances in good order. Here are some suggestions. Pay yourself first! The general rule is 10% of everything that comes into your bank account should […]

Fashionable frugal furniture

Christmas is near, but never fear, oily rag readers have something to share. Susan from Christchurch writes, “With Xmas approaching, we concentrate on gifts for all the children and grandchildren. The adults enjoy fine wine, nice food and when it is a get together at one person’s home we each bring a dish. Xmas is […]

Silly season about to grip the nation

It does not seem possible, but Christmas is almost here. Oily rag households will be busy getting jobs done before the silly season arrives and all sense and sensibility is abandoned completely. This week we look at some favourite tips from previous years to inspire creative ways to take the cost out of Christmas but […]

Free money comes at a cost

We came across some interesting facts and figures about interest-free credit. Typically you see this type of credit advertised by appliance stores and furniture companies. As it happens about 12 percent of those who take out this type of free credit don’t pay it back at the end of the term, so we thought we […]

Frugal seedlings and bulky butter

Caron from the Waikato has a great gardening tip to share, “Last Spring I bought an unusual yellow heritage tomato plant at a Farmer’s market. It grew very well and produced the most wonderful large bright yellow, delicious fruit. I cut a thick slice from the last one, placed it on a paper towel and let […]

Coffee grinds

An oily ragger contacted us recently to share their excitement about a recent visit to their local McDonalds. It was there that they noticed a “free coffee grinds” sign. They came away with a couple of bags and some useful advice from the friendly McStaff. There are in fact many uses for coffee grounds: from […]