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Thrifty Thursday


Forum: 2010 Playroom

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  #1  
December 15th, 2011, 12:13 PM
AtomicMama's Avatar CopperBoom!
Join Date: May 2008
Location: MI
Posts: 14,754
Share your favorite money saving tip!
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  #2  
December 15th, 2011, 12:17 PM
amonstersmomma's Avatar Coetta Dawn
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Florida
Posts: 4,520
I suck at saving money. I think the only two things I ever did to save money was/is cloth diaper and breastfeed oh and sign up for WIC.
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  #3  
December 15th, 2011, 12:28 PM
redbirds's Avatar Blessed Again!
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: CO
Posts: 18,447
don't go shopping I never buy anything at full price, I use coupons and I hate to shop. That about sums up my thriftiness
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  #4  
December 15th, 2011, 12:37 PM
~SavedbyGrace~'s Avatar ~Nichole~
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Chicagolandish, Illinois
Posts: 3,414
OH man...I need to read this, not contribute!!! I'll be stalking this thread!!
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  #5  
December 15th, 2011, 01:46 PM
Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 32,940
I haven't been too thrifty lately.
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  #6  
December 15th, 2011, 02:55 PM
dalynnrmc's Avatar pronounced (day-lynn)
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: near Waco, TX
Posts: 3,305
Well, let's see... thriftiness is categorized, so what are we talking? Everything in general, or holidays, or babies...? LOL

For groceries, the thing that has saved me the most money was to menu plan. Plan by the sales, plan similar foods that use a common ingredient so buying in bulk helps, and only go shopping once a month. (We still have to go weekly for things like milk, cheese, WIC items, etc. but the bulk of our groceries we get all on one day at the beginning of the month.)


For babies, cloth diapering and breastfeeding are really HUGE money savers. I've never CD'd before the twins, and let me tell you if we hadn't this time there would have been weeks this summer when we wouldn't have been able to buy diapers. Really. SO glad we did that this time.


One of my favorite money-saving tips is one most people don't like. You dont need subscription television. REALLY you don't. Between a digital box for local channels and a cheap sub from Netflix, you can watch anything you ever cared to see. Promise. Been doing it for 2 years now.


We are making most of our Christmas gifts this year, except what Santa plans to bring our own kids. The only other non-made gifts are books I got for free by volunteering at the local Scholastic warehouse sale. In fact, my family has created a new tradition of just trading our books at Christmas. We all love to read and this is a great way to get more in without spending money!! If anyone is interested in what else we are making for Christmas, food and otherwise, lmk! Or ask me on FB.


I'm sure I could contribute more. What areas do people wish they could spend less money in? LOL
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  #7  
December 15th, 2011, 04:30 PM
Mom2#1Drakester's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: fort worth, tx
Posts: 1,810
LOL Dalynn!! I watch way to much tv programming to catch it on netflix or local stations (w/ my dvr) We did try for awhile but we are addicted to things like animal planet, history channel and food network
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  #8  
December 15th, 2011, 05:59 PM
AtomicMama's Avatar CopperBoom!
Join Date: May 2008
Location: MI
Posts: 14,754
I'll second the cable, but I guess I've never thought of it as a money saving idea. However, I know that one is really personal! Plus, I haven't had cable, or even local channels (not digital converter box and a really old TV) for 4 years, so now that I have Netflix, I think it's amazing I just don't watch enough TV to rationalize it to myself. I have Netflix now, watch stuff on Hulu, or borrow it from the library.

Otherwise, I have no money saving tips. I'm horrible at it. I try to use coupons and shop sales, but I'm an impulse buyer like you wouldn't believe.
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  #9  
December 15th, 2011, 07:31 PM
dalynnrmc's Avatar pronounced (day-lynn)
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: near Waco, TX
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mom2#1Drakester View Post
LOL Dalynn!! I watch way to much tv programming to catch it on netflix or local stations (w/ my dvr) We did try for awhile but we are addicted to things like animal planet, history channel and food network
LOL That's the same sort of stuff we watched. I promise, it's available for free online.

But we went for about 9 months with absolutely NO television whatsoever, so that'll break those sorts of addictions. LOL And even now we don't get local channels, and only pay for Netflix occasionally. We should really get a router so that we can connect the Wii to the Netflix channel - we'd probably watch more tv that way.




How about this -

Did you know that you can make your own powdered sugar? Just stick regular, plain ole' sugar in a blender. Really. Hubby does it all the time.
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  #10  
December 15th, 2011, 08:42 PM
alethia's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Phoenix, Arizona
Posts: 18,623
Dollar store coupons, sale esp the buy 10 sales at the grocery store, bulk - i.e. cost-co that's what i got
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  #11  
December 16th, 2011, 05:41 AM
~Constance~
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 3,570
Frugality is hard and tedious work and I know that's what scares a lot of people from doing it. But just like anything you work at, you will see results equal to your effort.
Being frugal is a job to me and I really work at it.
The thermostat never goes above 66* in the Winter. In the summer, the AC is only on when the temp exceeds 84*.
I make nearly everything from scratch(and by scratch I mean I use flour and sugar and spices from cabinet, not mixes of any kind): breads, marinades, dressings, cakes, pasta, etc., even beer. I have cookbooks and Allrecipes.com and I know how to use 'em! Having a pantry full of ingredients and staples is much cheaper than boxes and cans of things, but it does take more time to put something together. I view that as a good thing as well. After the time invested, I savor my food more and don't wolf it down. The faster you eat, the more you eat and I think we all know what that leads to.
I buy 75% of our clothes at yard sales and thrift stores. I fix items instead of throwing them out and buying new.
I don't shop for entertainment or comfort or to be social. I take a list and get in and get out.
But THE biggest thing is is to track your spending. To really save money you need to understand where it is all going, right down to the soda you bought at work two weeks ago. When you add up all you spend on various categories and items you will see where you can cut back. Build up your discipline for cutting big things by starting with the small things. Maybe the ice cream bars at the grocery can go this week, maybe that second cup of coffee with the girls can go next week. Maybe you'll realize that you're spending $20 a week for a gym you haven't set foot in in 3 weeks. All those little leaks will sink your financial ship more quickly than you realize.
Once you've seen where your money has gone for a month or so, set a budget for each category below the total. As you record purchases the next month, keep reminding yourself of your budget numbers. Your attitude will start to shift. You can then fine tune your budget, try to better in your weak areas and decide where all this extra money you now have will go. Along the way your mind will try to derail this process by telling you that you're being deprived and that it's too hard. It is hard, but not too hard. The tradeoff for your time and discipline is freedom. Freedom from debt, freedom from worry, freedom from the whims of trends, freedom from stuff and consumerism.
Here's a great newish and humorous money blog I've been following lately that may give you a totally different perspective about why to be frugal: Mr. Money Mustache | Putting the Cash in your Stash
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  #12  
December 16th, 2011, 08:23 AM
Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 32,940
Excellent post, Constance!

I've been tracking our spending for a few years now and it has really helped (most of the time). We stil have slip ups, but they aren't nearly as bad as before!
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  #13  
December 16th, 2011, 11:10 PM
dalynnrmc's Avatar pronounced (day-lynn)
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: near Waco, TX
Posts: 3,305
Fantastic post, Constance! I haven't done the Ramsey thing yet, but know enough people and have heard enough snippets of it to think you must have done that? LOL

Frugality, for me, is a lifestyle. Yes, at times it is necessary, but it hasn't always been and won't always be that way. It's about getting away from the excessiveness that our society promotes and sees as the only way to gauge success. It's about taking excess and helping others, and about how much really is excess.


LOL I tell people that I never pay retail.

That's not true with groceries, unless you consider that I hardly ever buy name brand... which is why coupons don't do me much good. (I can save more money by simply purchasing store brands than I can buying name brands with coupons. Every now and then you find a deal, but I have found that it's not really worth the time you need to put into it. I may start researching and getting specific coupons for things I know that I buy, once I get a printer.)

But just about anything else, I don't pay retail. Use it until it wears out, and if someone else doesn't follow that rule then all the better for me. LOL
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  #14  
December 19th, 2011, 09:17 AM
~Constance~
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 3,570
I did read DR's book, Financial Peace, when I was a teenager. I actually haven't read TMMO yet but I do loosely follow the principles. It's "common sense" stuff that I was already doing.
I moderate a frugal forum and DR is talked about a lot. His program is A+ for helping people out of the cycle of debt and into financial security. The majority of people haven't been educated well about simple money management ideas and it's just not in their nature or in our cultural practice to be conservative. His program works for people who just didn't know what they didn't know and doesn't make them feel like idiots either.
I read pretty much every financial book in my county libraries during my teen years. Big advantage of homeschooling is all the free time! Being frugal is in my nature. I borrowed "The Tightwad Gazette" so much that I ended up buying my own copy. Only when the price dropped to $10 that is. I'm sure the librarian must have been scratching her head over a 13 year old's pile of financial books, sewing books and Nancy Drew novels.
I've never had a debt in my life. My DH is more "traditional" and has had car loans and the mortgage. I tried to talk him into buying a little shack trailer in cash when we first got married but he wasn't into that. I've always had an emergency fund and I started my bank account when I was 11. I've never applied for credit. I've always spent well below my/our means. During my working years I decided that owning a car was too expensive so I paid my mom to drive me. The rest of my paycheck went into my savings account. When big life events come up like car repairs, new roofing and windows, appliances, surgeries, etc, we have always had cash in the bank to cover them.
I don't say all this to brag, just to inform since it is easier for us to be frugal when I've had an head start with personality and early education. We don't have any big debts to pay for like many people do. We do have peace though.
I am always so amazed and excited for someone who decides to dig themselves out. It is hard but the results are worth it! Their success stories are inspiring to me and help keep me going with my frugal lifestyle.
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  #15  
December 19th, 2011, 12:15 PM
Super Mommy
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 824
Amazon.com

I started using them about a year ago, and it has saved us a ton. We also don't pay for cable, but we do have Netflix.

ETA: Oh, and I have also become the family barber. I even have started cutting my own hair.
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Last edited by evans.mom; December 19th, 2011 at 12:18 PM.
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  #16  
December 19th, 2011, 01:48 PM
dalynnrmc's Avatar pronounced (day-lynn)
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: near Waco, TX
Posts: 3,305
We also do not have debt hardly. I did end up taking out a loan for one semester in college, which I used to pay of credit cards I got while engaged and immediately recognized as DUMB. Still paying on the stupid student loan which has kicked me in the rear more than once.

And we did have a car loan - the one that got repossessed this summer. We were to pay it off in January.

So, the car loan and my old student loan, plus a few "last bills" from our early married days when we couldn't pay the new deposit and still pay the old bill... our debt is *maybe* 10k. And we don't have credit cards any more. Don't even own a house.


But ours has been more out of necessity than education.We don't have good credit not because we have BAD credit, but because when we saw ourselves getting in trouble with credit we just stopped using it altogether. Not a good idea, apparently, and that is the only reason we haven't been able to buy a home.


"We have done so much with so little for so long that we are pretty sure we could do anything with nothing whatsoever." Proven this year, time and time again. LOL


So, we live within our means even knowing how little that is. That's okay with us. It makes sense to us. It's natural, engrained in our characters and habits, and just "the way to do things" for us. And we know that we must be good stewards with little before we can be good stewards with much.
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  #17  
December 21st, 2011, 06:48 PM
emmiejack0810's Avatar MELANIE
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 2,795
I buy the kids clothes at consigments sales, hand me downs and next years sizes when they go on super sale...

The only thing I really pay full price for is kids shoes - we have to go to stride rite so that is it...
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