I have been watching some of these money saving tips on TV and I think DUH…..But I haven’t always been doing all this stuff to save money. In my former life (when I had a job and didn’t have two mini humans that totally depended on me) saving money wasn’t such a big deal. We have always been frugal but not out of necessity like we are these days. I thought I would share some things that we do to cut back. You can use the ones you find helpful. Or if you like to sit around and talk about how I have completely lost my mind then perhaps these will give you a little ammo……
We use vinegar to clean. You can get two huge containers of vinegar at Sams for around $3.00. It last forever and cleans everything just as well as any other household cleaner. I clean the kitchen, bathrooms; mop the floors, Windex all with vinegar. Not to mention I have a two year old who loves to taste everything. If she takes a squirt of vinegar who cares it’s just vinegar. I also use it in the laundry for fabric softener. No, you can’t smell it on your clothes. It works try it. For more vinegar uses you can go here.
Of course we use energy efficient light bulbs. We also take out some. Like if you have a ceiling fan with 4 bulbs. Do you really need 4 bulbs on? Really it is much more pleasant lighting to just have one or two. Just try it and see.
I make my own laundry soap which saves tons of money.
You don’t need as much dish soap or laundry soap as you think. Only use half of the recommended amount and see if your clothes and dishes aren’t just as clean. Most of that stuff just goes down the drain. Try it and see!
We trade stuff. WHAT? Yes. You know I work CVS and get tons of beauty products for almost nothing. So when I go to visit my mom I usually try to work out a deal with her. I will bring her a bunch of things like shampoo, soap, razors, deodorant, and whatever else I got at the grocery store (like all that BBQ sauce). In return she will buy some diapers and give me her coupons from the week before. Obviously I am getting the better end of the deal but hey she’s the Mimi and she likes to do stuff for the kids anyway that just gives a little perk.
We don’t have cable. Now, this is a new thing. We have been going about a month without it. It is actually refreshing. GASP! Oh no she didn’t…….Really; I got to where I felt almost tied down to the TV. With TiVo or DVR you can record everything under the sun. All of a sudden you are addicted to three shows a day that all come on at the same time. Now I just pick one and watch it. Sure we miss the wonder pets but it is also nice to know there is only OETA or the Jesus cartoons. No commercials in between for your two year old to learn about Hannah Montana or how Obama is the coolest guy on the planet. Not to mention the issue of the two year old being addicted to the TV…. That’s a whole different post.
I like cooking. We have a freezer and we use it. If I make a casserole (like lasagna) I use two 8 X 8 pans instead of one 9 X 13. I cook half and freeze half. That saves a ton of money and when I don’t feel like cooking I always have food on hand. It also ensures that leftovers don’t get thrown in the trash. I use coupons and cook around what I have. I don’t go out to the store and decide. I make my menu for next week based on the food I already have this week. If I find something on sale then great. I can use it in next week’s menu. Sometimes I have to get creative but normally we have things to make great meals on hand.
If you have any great money saving tips please share. I love to hear new ideas.