Friday, February 14, 2014

*~*~*Saving Money*~*~*

I have read every book,
looked at every penny pinching site,
and heard every frugal tip,
Well, almost...
I kinda feed off of it all.
It keeps me motivated.
So some of the things that work for us.
(My childhood piggy bank)

Let's talk garbage!
We don't have garbage service - roughly $32 per month.
I have a theory that the more garbage you produce,
the more money you are spending.
You can recycle tin cans (not actually tin anymore,)
most plastics (except the cellophane kind that covers veggies,)
paper of nearly every sort, and glass.
When I have these items, I simply rinse them out
and place them in the bag of like items.
I did make a run to the transfer station before Christmas
which cost $8.  It was on the way to work so no extra gas was used.
At this point, I still don't have 1 full garbage can.

If you have credit card debt and are paying interest,
call the number on the card.
Don't even talk to the person that answers the phone.
Ask to speak with a manager or supervisor - 
all of this kindly and respectfully of course.
Tell the supervisor that you receive offers of 0% interest,
and ask what they can offer because you don't want to have to
switch cards.
You might even qualify for a 1 year hardship rate of 0% interest.
This just means that much more towards the principle.
Obviously, pay as much towards it as possible.

Spend about half an hour on the phone and save a lot.
Phone company: no caller ID, & pay for long distance calls.
This has saved us between $30-$40 per month.
Insurance: talk to your agent.  combine home & auto
and find the best rate that suits your needs.
Electric: Shut off lights, unplug just about anything not in use, 
hang clothes to dry, and wash dishes by hand.
(Dryer and dishwasher use the most electric)
Nix the TV - it's a habit not a necessity.
Hygiene: I make our laundry detergent for pennies vs.
store bought $10 per bottle or box. 
Also, use cloth napkins, hand towels etc. 

Diet - what do you eat?
I think it's funny (or peculiar) that some rave about how much 
they save on items that are unhealthy.
I have a better idea.  Don't buy them at all.
Examples are chips, soda-pop, crackers, processed cheeses,
dressings, toppings of all sorts, boxed sweets or just add water
or hamburger, jello, canned soup...the list goes on.
We try to keep the simple sugars (grains) to a minimum.
Often these are big sales items and 'fillers.'
Just an FYI: broccoli has 8 times as much fiber as whole grain
plus much needed nutrients.
When you shop, shop the skirt of the store.
That is where the dairy, meats, and produce are.
Be leery of the isles - they'll getchya.
About the only thing I get from the isles are
peanut butter, vinegar, and spices.
Also, find a place where you can buy in bulk.
There are a variety of ways to safely and effectively store it.
There are two upsides to this:
you will save money & be healthier.
And oh yes, eat at home (and make coffee at home too.)

You'll love this one.
Depending upon where you live...
aaaand if you have a friend in law enforcement...
at times they catch poachers with an animal 
already dressed out.
This might vary by state, 
but they used to donate them to the senior center
which they can no longer do because of FDA regulations.
At times, they have nobody to donate the meat to.
If you have this resource and like game,
it's just a matter of cutting and wrapping.
Free meat.

Figure out where your money is going.
If you know where it's going, 
you can focus on decreasing the amount spent in the 
most significant areas.
This will be different for every household
as we each have our own issues, habits, chocolate addictions, etc.
Like anything, it's easier if you start small
say by making the call to the phone company.
Once you realize the savings,
you will want to save more & you will.

My personal challenge is usually the electric bill:
Last month it was down to $62.
About 5 years ago, I had it down to $55, 
but rates keep increasing.
I still want to try to beat that $55.

If you have a particular area that I didn't address,
let me know.
This is by no means a complete list.
(We save about 50cents/gal on propane
by being on the 'keep-full' list.)
If I know of a way you can save,
I will certainly share.

Until next time,
Nimble Fingers and Even Stitches


  1. I love this list ! I try to stay away from the grocery store as much as possible.
    The more often I go, the more I spend. If I need something in between trips, I 'use and make do', with what I have at home. In the winter, we don't turn on the heat at all at night. We do use an electric heating blanket at night when we sleep, which uses very little electircity.
    Great post. Rose

  2. I followed a link from Gorges Grouse. I found the post interesting. I will book mark and hope to get back.

    Grace and peace.

  3. Love your "saving money" list and your no-nonsense approach! Especially like the "eat at home" advice, such a novel concept :)

  4. Great ideas! You were right about us being on the same wavelength this week, even to the images we chose, lol. We are using a woodstove and a pellet stove for heat this year in our new (very used) home. It seems to be saving substantially more than fuel oil. I am keeping track of the costs for analyzing after the Winter.

  5. good suggestions! I should follow them!