Thursday, March 11, 2010

What do you do to save money?

So... I was asked, "What do you do to save money?"

Oh, my. Let me count the ways... no, I don't think I can. There are so many ways to save money that I don't think anyone could list them. Books and books have been written about them, web sites are filled with ideas, and now even "mainstream" media is touting their own advice, as generic and ho-hum as it might seem to those of us who have been doing this for awhile.

Where would you start to tell someone how you save money? I haven't figured it out yet, except to say something like, "Don't waste anything. Don't use more than you need. Turn it off, turn it down, turn it into something else."

Ideas, anyone?


  1. I try and use up left overs. I have chickens so the eggs are free and I don't have to buy them. I go to a bread store where I buy day old organic bread for a dollar. Always check and buy the sale items in grocery stores. Coupons when possible but really I am not a big coupon user because mainly they are for junk and convenience foods and I don't buy a lot of either. Make most of my stuff home made from scratch use my crock pot more than my gas stove. Don't buy anything I can get for free. Dumpster dive, shop Goodwill and other thrift stores. Don't make shopping a form of entertainment. Rent DVD from Red Box they are only a dollar. Get DVD s from the library they are free and I have seen many great movies this way including foreign films (Stay away from the French ones though!) Watch PBS! Don't have cable or satellite. I have a pay as you go phone and only spend 20.00 a month on it. Use only for emergencies not idle chit chat.
    Drive a small car. Hang dry my cloths rather than use a dryer (although it has been bad weather this month so I have had to use dryer more than I usually do)Pay down my debt. I have stopped going out to eat because the last few times I have eaten out I have gotten very sick. I just can't trust anyone to make my food but me and my husband. I have seen Gorden Ramsey's Kitchen Nightmares and trust me I'll eat at home thank you! I go camping for vacations, swim in my pool in the summer. Go fishing and bike riding. Hey it entertained me as a child so why not my own kids? I don't find today's entertainment all that entertaining anyways! I have been told I am too old fashioned but I just don't see it!

  2. I don't think there's such a thing as "too" old fashioned. Old fashioned is good, if that's what you're describing!

  3. I'd send them to your Blog! I come here and learn lots! LOL.
    I also sign up for e-mail groups that help each other with tips and ideas. Often we learn from others, and that in turns helps us save in ways we'd never thought of.
    Like my Car being spray painted, and finding out that my Magic Eraser took it all off, even off the windows! That saved hundreds of dollars alone.
    Or trading extra plants, and landscaping, or vegetable gardening for practically free!
    It can be done.

  4. Like the previous poster, I have stepped off of the "mainstream" path of life and couldn't be happier about it. For years, I followed the herd in my grotesque professional consumerism -- shopping WAS entertainment! How shallow!

    I've matured some and now, my philosophy is to be a producer, not a consumer. I want to create -- home cooked meals, a garden, quilts, a cozy home for my family, a pantry full of home-canned food, etc. -- and not merely consume mindlessly.

    I get a thrill that almost all of my clothes come from thrift stores & rummage sales for pennies on the dollar and I'm wearing quality, stylish and name-brand clothes!

    My home cooked meals are better tasting, and healthier than restaurant fare. I'm well read, educated and entertained from free library materials. I've built a fantastic home library from library book sales and other thrifted books.

    I'm quilting and sewing w/saved scraps and carefully gleaned clearance fabrics.

    My home is furnished & decorated w/flea market finds, dishes, etc.

    I don't watch any network TV, eat fast food or drink pop. I question advertising, marketing and glossy magazines that tell me what I have to have (and spend my money on) in order to be worthy and happy. I define myself through the eyes of God, not man.

  5. Wonderful comment, Bette! Yours sounds like a life of fulfillment and joy.

  6. Pat,

    Well, it is, but I still manage to find something so FABULOUS at a store that I just love and think I have to have, but don't need, then I agonize over buying it or not buying it! Ah, the delemmias of life!!


  7. I think we're all prone to those "gotta haves" now and then. The best way I've found to deal with it is to promise myself that if I still want it badly in 3 days, I'll come back and get it. Very seldom do I ever even think of it again.

  8. My story is similar to Bette's. There was a time 2 1/2 decades ago when I lived in NYC and was part of that rat race. I now live in a rural and countrified environment & I believe it has brought out the best in me. I'm now into the edible landscape and growing medicinal herbs. I garden, can, dehydrate, make my own of lots of things and feel immense pride and satisfaction in the skills I've slowly acquired over the years. I would have made a great homesteader. :)

  9. Been there, done that, Zoë, and loved it all the way. Living your own life sure beats jumping through hoops for someone else.

  10. I don't text message...I mean what's the point? To me it is no better than sending out smoke signals after all it takes awhile to text and then you still got to wait for the answer. I just can't for the life of me understand why so many people are swayed by the latest technology which is nothing more than smoke and mirrors anyways! I know I know I am not cool and that's okay with me after all I am still on dial up and only pay 8.00 a month for it! OK so it may not be the fastest but then again I don't remember signing up for the Whoever Has the Most Toys wins race either. I don't own my own business and I only use the internet for my own interests so shelling out a lot of money on it doesn't make sense after all it's not making ME money (although it could if I wanted to bother)For me a lot of technology including text messaging is a distraction. I don't need to piecemeal my technology you know this you can flip, that one you can serf the web, the other one has a bigger map (you all know the ads and jingles) Now, when they can make my dishwasher wash, wipe AND put away my dishes (including pots and pans) then I will stand up and take notice, till then I'll pass and hope for better things! Not wasting my time or money!

  11. I don't text message either, and I don't own a dish washer... or a bread maker, a rice cooker, a GPS, an mp3 player. I have no need of those things. And I agree... when they make a dishwasher that will wash, wipe and put away the dishes, I might be interested. :)

  12. So....gas prices here are now at 3.00 a gallon AGAIN! Here comes the vicious cycle of EVERYTHING going up again because of gas prices! I'm tightening my belt even more. Time to add a few more holes to the belt so I can tighten it even further!!
    I saw the Andy Griffith Show the other night. They had prices on the grocery store from the 1950's. Pot roast for 15 cents a pound! No wonder Aunt Bee served it every week! I wonder if my local grocery store had one week of sales that had 1950's prices if they would actually make a profit? Who wouldn't buy pot roast for 15 cents a pound? Or hamburger for 9 cents a pound? Steaks 17 cents a pound? Shoot I'd go out and buy another freezer just to stock up on those prices!

  13. I just wanted to add this. I know a good deal of people who are on anti-depressants and while I make no comment about that I do want to say this. So far I am fortunate that I am not on any kind of medication for any ailment. So I save money this way! I try and keep myself as healthy as possible except for the few colds and viruses that come my way but I treat them with natural product. I work full-time and then clean my home and yard. All this keeps me busy and healthy especially the yard work. I enjoy it and I see the results instantly! Also I enjoy watching the night sky and am so awed by it. Nope I don't pay to go to the science center to do this I do it at home for free in my own back yard! But if you can't access a place in your home to sky watch then the science center is an excellent way to do this. It is relaxing and calming. Also there are various web sights such as NASA that tells you what to look for in the night sky each night. I don't know but sky watching and bird watching have been a passion of mine for my whole life! I believe more people need to do this as it really takes you away from the hustle and bustle of life and for me it keeps me from focusing on myself and thereby being less depressed about life!

  14. Pat. There´s a text that I think was written by you about measuring things and then challenging these measurements. It´s the first advice I give everyone

  15. I don't know if I wrote it or not, but it's good advice! :)