With rising prices of gas, groceries, clothes and practically everything else in between, the economy is forcing many of us to be wise about how we spend our money and as a result has led many, including myself, to save just a little more. This does not require you to spend hours each week couponing or scanning newspaper ads – working moms do not have time for that!
Here is a list of ways in which our household saves money. Do you follow any of these? If not, please share with us the ways you save money!
- Lights Off! – When I shower, instead of turning the bathroom light on, I use a candle. Not only is it free, but it’s very relaxing! Also, when Mike and I are watching TV at night, I don’t turn any lights on in that room and if I need to, we just dim the recessed lighting to save on electricity.
- Draw the curtains, especially on the sunny side of your home. Room temperatures can rise by as much as 10 to 20 degrees because of direct sunlight entering the room.
- Hang clothes to dry. You can buy a portable clothes drying rack, but to save even more money, tie a thick rope in your basement from one end to another and hang the clothes on that.
- Use cold water to wash your clothes as this will really save on your electricity bill.
- Make your own household cleaners, such as glass cleaner, Febreeze, bathtub cleaner and many more! Not only is it a lot less expensive to purchase the ingredients needed, it’s a lot safer to use because you know what the ingredients are.
- Use “junk mail” envelopes. Everyone receives junk mail and a lot of times this junk mail includes a return envelope. Keep these and use them the next time you have to mail something.
- Don’t throw those veggies out! Turn leftover veggies into soup. Keep a large bowl in your freezer and each night after dinner; dump any remaining veggies in the bowl. When the bowl is filled, you have a great base for soup.
- Use a Crock Pot. Did you know that a Crock Pot uses a lot less electricity that the oven? Food tastes great after cooking all day, too, and it’s a huge time saver! (Not to mention the house smells great!)
- Use plastic grocery bags in your small trash cans. Don’t worry, Stop and Shop won’t mind.
- Visit your local library. It is a warehouse for wonderful, fun, educational books and even movies!
- Craigslist and Freecycle. They are great websites that offer either free or very low-priced items for anyone’s budget. From baby toys to furniture and everything in between, these sites prove to help save you money.
- Grow your own produce. Gardening is fun for the entire family and your wallet appreciates it as well. Don’t stress out about how difficult you might think it is – start off small with tomato plants in pots and some peppers – you would be surprised at how quickly you grow a green thumb.
- Bake and Cook. Your kitchen is there for a reason. I plan on teaching Maddie the many benefits of making homemade meals, particularly how you can make gourmet meals at a fraction of the cost it would be at a high-end restaurant.
- Bring your own lunch. If you buy lunch at work, and you spend $7 per lunch, bringing your own lunch four days a week (treat yourself on the fifth, if you want) saves you $28 a week, or about $112 a month.
- Bring your own coffee. While I am a tea drinker, I will occasionally drink coffee. Be sure to invest in a good quality travel mug and commute with your own coffee instead of buying it on the road; you’ll save anywhere from $5 to $35 a week or more.
- Make a list before going shopping: They call it impulse buying for a reason.
- Go grocery shopping while you are in a hurry: Get in and out quick = save money.
Until next time, continue to encourage your family to consider ways to save money! Have a frugal lady day!