Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Financial Resolutions for 2015

Did you make a financial resolution? That's one of the most common resolutions, right after losing weight/getting fit.

Saving more money and paying off debt are the two essential financial resolutions that most people shoot for, but can you be more frugal to meet that goal?

You might, and it might not hurt as much as you think it will.


Use ALL of it. The bread heels, the broccoli stems, the radish leaves... all of it. Then take the roots of celery and onions and lettuce and regrow them so you don't have to buy them again.

Save all the "little bits" of vegetables and meat in a container in the freezer. When you have enough, make soup with it.

Cook from scratch. Learn how to make gravy, biscuits and more and quit buying them already made.


Put yourself on a clothing fast. Unless your shoes are really worn (really worn), you don't need a new pair. Your clothing is probably good enough to last through the rest of the winter, at the least.

Learn to patch and darn, sew buttons back on, sew up a hem or a seam. Do the best you can to make the clothes you have look good and last.


Unless your furniture is literally falling apart, don't buy any. If you really, really need a coffee table, find a sturdy cardboard box, fill it with magazines or newspaper and put a cloth over it. Do the same for end tables. Use throws over the worst part of the couch.


Do you need washcloths? Take an old towel, cut it to the right size and hem it to make a washcloth. Repeat until you run out of material.

Potholders are easy to make and they don't have to be fancy to work well. It's simply cloth folded and sewn together so there is enough padding to keep from burning yourself.

Rugs can be made of rags or yarn or strips of cloth.

Let your imagination work for you and find ways to get what you really need, but don't mistake wants for needs. And stay out of the stores if you really want to fulfill your financial resolution. 

Monday, January 26, 2015

Frugal Weather?

Not when it's snowing and blowing out there and you're trying to stay warm! But even then, you can do some things to help with the heating bill and keep everyone comfy and cozy.

Pass out the blankets, the hot chocolate and the board games. No board games? Make up some word games or tell stories, or just talk. Keep everyone in the same room and busy and it will seem warmer and more comfortable.

If you don't have the problem of a snowstorm or cold weather, maybe you're experiencing a late January thaw, as we are here. Right now, the windows are open to freshen the air, the heater is turned off and I am wearing flipflops! It's officially 71 degrees. That's almost scary, but it sure is frugal.

When you get an occasional day like that in the winter, make the best use of it possible.

Today would be a great day to do laundry and hang it outside, for instance.

Open all the windows and doors that you can and let the stale winter air out. Your home will smell and feel much fresher than artificial scents can ever make it.

Turn off the heat if you can. Even if it's a little cooler than 71, you can put on an extra sweater and rough it for a few hours, until it starts to cool down noticeably.

Go outside and get some sunshine and take the kids with you. It will make all of you feel better and lighten your moods.

If you're sitting on the East Coast right now and anticipating a huge storm, or are in the midst of it, you might think that I'm gloating a little. I'm not; we have those storms, too, and I'm sure ours is coming soon.

It's frugal and smart to enjoy what we have, when we have it. 

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Happy New Year, Again

It seems as if the wheels of time go around and around faster and faster. Here we are, at the beginning of another new year, looking forward to being able to do things we didn't do last year; learn things we didn't learn; lose weight we didn't lose; save money we didn't save.

Hope springs eternal, they say. Without hope and a new beginning now and then, where would we be?

So I want to wish you a very good new year. No matter what your resolutions or hopes or dreams are, I hope they all come to fruition in 2015.

Happy New Year.