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Vintage Toys

August 6th, 2007 at 11:59 am

Recently, (Saturday) I bought my first vintage toy. It was a tin patriot drum manufactured by J Chein & Co. When I bought it at a yard-sale I was intrigued by its worth but after researching it I think it is more the manufacture (J Chein & Co) that intrigues me.

Here is a brief overview:

J Chein began his toy company in 1903. His trademark was all his toys were lithographed tin. He had a line of drums, coin banks, wind-ups, tops, and all his products were American made. In 1926, Chein died and his wife took over the company. She turned management of the company over to her brother Samuel Hoffman. He did very well with the company until the 1950s when the USA starting importing japanese toys. The japanese toys were less costly and competing with them caused the company to struggle financially. Even though Hoffman was already dealing with a decrease in sales he also refused to start producing plastic toys, which had become the new rage. In the 1960s the US government put limitations on tin toys because of safety reasons. Because of costliness in retooling their toys with smooth edges the Chein tin toy lines were stopped.

I love that they toys are American made and I love that faced with making them in plastic or not making them at all they chose to end their toy production line. Business-wise it was not the smartest decision but morally I think it was a wonderful decision. Hoffman felt that plastic was an inferior product and he didn't want to use it.

I am guessing with the Fisher-Price "debacle" (oh I mean) Recall that the lithographed tin toys are safer for my children to play with then the plastic lead paint toys!

Any vintage toy collectors here in "frugal world"?

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August 2nd, 2007 at 03:55 pm

I haven't written in this blog since January. And I have to say I am super impressed with all the changes. It really is exactly the type of set-up I am looking for.

I wish to continue this blog; but use it as a way to chronicle the frugal things that I do each day. The main reason I am writing this is for my own peace of mind. To show myself that the little frugal things that I do add up big when it comes to my budget.

Frugal things I did today:

I didn't go anywhere in my car today. No gas being used.

I cleaned my house using white vinegar and baking soda. No money spent on cleaning products.

The kids went swimming in our Soft-Side Pool. It was given to me for free because it had a tear in the bottom. Nothing that a little vinyl patch and tube of cement couldn't fix. Total cost of fix .97 cents.

The kids and I had an afternoon snack of blueberries fresh from my blueberry bushes.

I used Listerine Whiting Strips for free. I am a BzzAgent and am able to get many products for free...saving my family money.


I am really excited about chronicling my frugal deeds each day.

Till tomorrow....


July 20th, 2006 at 05:41 am

Okay so here is the question I have been pondering for the last couple of days. If I was more organized would I have more money?

I was thinking about it and I would assume yes.

I would know exactly what I had, and what I still needed. I think that often (even though I am frugal) I get wrapped up in the need to consume. Doesn't it seem as a society we can never have enough things? We have so many choices there is never just one type of crackers, there are hundreds of different ones to choose from, never just one cleaning product, but hundreds of different ways/types of cleaners.

Every think about that when you are grocery shopping? Standing there not only comparing prices but looking at all the damn varieties. How can a whole aisle be devoted to chips, how can there really be that many variations?

Okay so here is my next challenge, stop with constant consuming of unnecessary things and get myself organized. I have so much I don't even know what I have.

Here is the link, to take a look at my pantry, closet, vanity and desk.

I know disgusting, so now I am going to try to walk the line between need and desire. And it is a very thin line! I don't want to miss out on bargains especially when it comes to stock piling my non-perishables and going to yard sales. But I don't want to consume so much I am overwhelmed and just plan loaded down with things.

Anyone else have this problem?

Weird Day

July 18th, 2006 at 11:26 am

Well today was one of those day that I thought I was going to get a lot done but by 7:30am this morning and two phone calls(yes that is two phone calls before 7:30am)I just knew it was going to be one of those days.

I had plans to go to Home Depot to scout out some shelving for my non-perishables that I am stocking up on. And then hit Market Basket next door to them for some sales. But instead I decided to keep us all home and let me kids have a day by the pool. My friend gave us one of those SoftPools it 10ft in diameter and 28"inches high perfect for a 3yr old and a 4yr old. It is great it has a filter pump and everything! And it cost me nothing, except the electricity to run the filter. But it only has to be run 3hrs a day because it is such a small pool(according to manual).

So while they swam I tended to my garden; put more manure down and weeded. Looks like it will be a hard year for my peppers from what I hear no ones are doing well in New England because of all the rain? My tomatoes are taking on a life of their own I should have a bundle. Looks like I won't have to buy any spaghetti sauce this year. It is a lot of work but my husband will only eat my homemade sauce.

Grocery Journal

July 17th, 2006 at 02:33 pm

Well I am going to do it. I have decided to keep a grocery journal paying special attention to items that go on sale.

On top of my regular grocery shopping I am going to try to get those sale items that each grocery store has to draw you in. I will plan my errands around the different grocery stores in my town. I figure probably after a year of doing this I will start to see some real savings. I am hoping to have a large enough stock pile of non-perishable goods(food, cleaning, and personal items) that I will only have to shop the sales.

The only problem I can see with my plan is that I am not stock piling perishable goods. I debated whether to get an extra freezer, but we really don't eat much meat so I have room in my freezer in my kitchen for any frozen veggies or fruits. And I am afraid if I stock pile some meat what happens if the electricty goes out. I hate the thought of all that meat spoiling. So I am still undecided about that aspect.

If you want to see my purchases for today you can log on at http://toysonsale.clubmom.com/toys_on_sale/2006/07/channel_8...

New Guy in Savingville!

July 15th, 2006 at 06:54 pm

I have visited SavingAdvice.com at least once a week for over a year now and it is about time I had a blog. I am frugal mother of two young children, and a “money spending” husband. To gain control back of our finances I have put us all on a strict budget. It has not been hard for me, but my poor hubby is suffering so…… *sniffle* *sniffle*

Everything gets budgeted now down to the penny. We are able to pay our monthly bills, put money into savings, 401k, put $150 aside each week for grocery/miscellaneous expenses, and then hubby gets an allowance of $100 a week for entertainment (lunch, dinner out, and occasion movie). I know what you are thinking $100 a week for entertainment that is; $400 a month!

I know it is killing me! But right now I am just trying to get creative to make up for the large hole in my budget. Large hole better know as “Hubby”.

I am not only concentrating on earning money but also trying very hard to save money. In reality, it does not matter how much you make if you save nothing!

So here it begins my journey on Savingadvice.com, I hope to share with you all my great clearance finds, money saving tricks, budgeting ideas, and ways I have found to earn money.