I may have told this story before, but it fits this thread so well.
My mother, bless her heart, was a cheapskate. She got this way honestly, starting as a middle kid in a large family, on a tiny Appalachian farm during the Depression. Add in a spendthrift first husband, and small children, in an era where the good-paying jobs went to men, and one understands how she got into the habit. Doubtless, there was a time when a Styrofoam meat tray would have indeed been a much valued item.
Unfortunately, she could never stop saving every penny. One winter will go down in infamy as the Winter of the Kerosene Stove. Using a long stick, my mother had measured the level in the fuel oil tank and it was too low. Convinced that it had sprung a leak, and would have to be replaced, she turned off the boiler completely, and put a portable kerosene stove in the living room. Yes, boys and girls, she was going to heat an entire 1100 square foot house through a mid-Atlantic winter with one kerosene stove. Did I mention that the hot water for the house was heated by the same boiler? No boiler, no hot water. Just a big stock pot on top of the portable stove. Ventilation wasn't a problem because the steel casement windows leaked like sieves, but the bedrooms got ice on the windows and mildew on the walls.
Then a baseboard pipe froze and burst. Time to give up on this experiment, right? Nope. Mother turned the water off. It was turned on once a day to fill the bathtub and buckets, then turned off. No indication whatsoever that she would ever get this fixed. (Up until this point, I had been living there. No rent was cheap enough to put up with this nonsense, so I temporarily moved in with a sympathetic friend.) I swear, the only reason the pipe was fixed was that my sister was dating
The situation continued at least a month more, when the oil supply company called and asked why the tank was still full. That's right, boys and girls, the tank never had a leak; Mother had mis-measured. In fact, it still didn't have a leak when I replaced it 15 years later.