The Free Money Box

In our home, we have a free money box. Thanks to this box, we have been able to afford things, both necessities and treats, that we might not otherwise have, or at least been able to justify. To start our free money box, I purchased an inexpensive but sturdy cardboard box with a lid and label. I titled the label, and set to work. I started by going through the house and gathering up all of the unused gift cards that we had from the many places that they were hiding: drawers, purses, bags, cards, closets, pockets, etc. All of … Continue reading

Frugal Attitudes Are Here to Stay

According to a Deloitte’s 2013 American Pantry Study, a whopping 94% of consumers are keeping their frugal attitude. The study said that, even if the economy improves, these consumers plan to remain cautious and keep their spending at current levels. It seems that many of us are taking the lessons that we have learned during the great recession and are developing a new relationship with our money and with our debt. Families who once didn’t blink twice about running up thousands or even hundreds of thousand dollars in debt are working hard to pay everything down, creating budgets and sticking with them. … Continue reading

When I Am Feeling Entitled

Entitlement. It creeps up in almost every family. That feeling or thought that you have not only a right to all that you possess, but a right to more and more. Sometimes we all need a little perspective about that. In general, my kids are pretty good when it comes to appreciating our blessings and not asking for more. But, let us face it, they are kids. It can be a little difficult to feel blessed when friends around them seem to have so much more, or when a parent, like me, complains about what we have, such as the … Continue reading

How Getting Enough Sleep Saves You Money

Ah sleep. It is one of those things that most of us dream about (literally). Remember the days before kids, a house and responsibilities when you could just sleep in whenever you wanted to? Yeah, me neither. My memory doesn’t go back that far. Still, I try to make every effort to get as much sleep as possible. My body needs it, and it saves me money. If you need an excuse to take care of yourself, this is a good one. There are several ways that getting enough sleep has a direct correlation to saving money. People who get … Continue reading

How to Let Go of the Unwanted

There are many reasons for letting go of the unwanted in your life. When you let go of extra baggage, whether it is emotional, mental or physical, you are freed up to live a healthier and happier life. Think about how life might be if you could let go of everything from extra pounds to extra stuff? There are special challenges for those of us who practice frugal living in regards to letting go of the unwanted. Because we want to make sure that we are good stewards of our money, make wise buying decisions and reuse whatever we have … Continue reading

Independently Frugal

Being frugal takes a bit of an independent streak, a willingness to take the road not travelled by most of the world. Buying the things that we want when we want them at whatever price is available seems to be the thing to do. Oh sure, most of us still look for bargains, but when we really want something, we usually buy it anyway. It takes the ability to not follow the crowd, when you shop at thrift stores, make your own laundry detergent, cook from scratch and spend the summer hunting down free entertainment. With the recession, came an … Continue reading

Frugal Is as Frugal Does

Life may be a like a box of chocolates, but for the really frugal minded, those chocolates were half price and purchased with a coupon. Pick a random group of 25 people and ask them what it means to be frugal and how they make choices to be good stewards of their money. Chances are that you will get a lot of different answers all across the board concerning frugality and saving money. It tends to mean different things to different people. I recently read an article in a national women’s magazine about a family that decided to be frugal, … Continue reading

Fewer Babies? Blame It on the Economy

Would you let the economy dictate how many children you have, or if you have children at all? For many couples, the poor state of the economy has forced them into remaining childless, even through they have always dreamed of having children, they say. If you’ve noticed fewer babies and young children at the park lately, you aren’t imagining things. According to the Centers of Disease Control, the U.S. fertility rate has dropped sharply since the country went into recession (2007), and it shows no signs of bouncing back any time soon. Experts predict that when the economy does eventually … Continue reading

Frugal Friends are Priceless

If you surround yourself with frugal friends, saving money will be easy. Yesterday, after the town parade and free hot dogs and games, my family headed over to an area attraction that was sponsoring free admission for the day. The promotion wasn’t widely advertised. It wasn’t mentioned on the website or put on any community calendars, so not too many people knew about it. Thanks to a faithful frugal friend, though, who alerted me to the event, my family of five was able to enjoy the afternoon, which included a free tour, a narrated tram ride, and time in “the … Continue reading

Look Around: How is the Economy Doing?

Sometimes, in order to gauge the state of the economy, you just have to look around. I check the news reports often, and am intrigued by reports about trends that will affect how my family spends and saves. For example, when there were problems with the peanut crop, I made sure to stock up on peanut butter, a staple in my household. I also like to look around at what is happening locally, in my neighborhood and community. Houses seem to be selling better than they have in a long time, and this is good. Fewer abandoned properties and homes … Continue reading