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Rachelle

Frugal Living Tips

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Let me preface this by saying that I may be the only one with this problem, but my cabinets seem to accumulate food items that never get eaten. With that said, we are going to be moving. We've been planning our meals around what we have in stock (minus a few fresh items, milk, etc). Wouldn't this be a handy thing to do regularly a few times a year? For one, it allows you to rotate items and second, I'm sure we're saving a nice chunk of change.

 

I'm sure we'll be having a few interesting meals this way, but hey it sure livens up my same old same old recipes!

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Maven, that is an awesome idea. How many of us throw out leftovers from 3 weeks ago? I say we make Thursdays official left overs day, where you don't make anything new, and just eat what is in the fridge. Suck it up and eat those nasty sweet and sour meatballs you made on Monday!

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I say we make Thursdays official left overs day
Actually I do this on Wednesdays! Every wednesday is left over day because I have to take Cyndel swimming for 6. We usually eat around 5:30 on most days, but that doesn't give us enough time to get to the pool, and it's too late to make anything after we get home.

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I have found that if we buy the better breads on sandwich is filling without having a ton of lunch meat or over doing the chips on the side.

 

Did you know that if you like frozen juice concentrates the Western Family Brand tastes as good as the name brands and costs half the price

 

Dristan is going to start riding his bike to work as soon as it warms up a bit. Having him do that will save us about $75-100 a month on gas.

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Don’t buy bottled water.

Boil your water, let cool, and use a thermos or re-use any old sealable bottles you may have.

 

 

If anyone else suggested this, my apologies, I have not read through the thread in its entirety.

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Or...if, like us you MUST buy water (we are on a well, and the water has become not really OK for consumption...) Buy some of those 5 gallon jugs that can be refilled...it will save you money over smaller bottled water.

 

Find a system to keep track of your money and stick to it (more then looking online to see what is in your account) I've found a new system that I'm LOVING, so I will share it. I use microsoft Money to keep track of everything...but not the way it is intended to. I found that I HATED going through and redoing and checking all the automatic stuff Money does. So, I no longer even get online with it, and this system can be used with excell or on paper too.

 

I only have one checking account, but in Money I have created several "accounts". One for the money to go into which is called "checking". Then I created several "accounts" for stuff like "Car Payment" and "Phone". When we get paid (twice a month) I "transfer" half of each bill into the correct account (so, we pay $80/month on our phones. When a paycheck comes I have $40 scheduled to go into the "Phone" account). This way, as soon as the check is in, I can look in our "checking" account in Money and see what we actually have left to spend. Our check came today, and even though I look online and it says we have lot of money, I know that we only actually have about $100 to spend for the next two weeks. It's really helped me be on top of our spending.

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Making your own bread is also very frugal! It's easier than you might think, although it's time consuming. But you would be surprised how much bread you can get out of a jar of yeast and a bag of flour! And what's better than slicing a warm piece of bread and slathering it with butter and honey? ...oh, and the smell that fills your house! *yum* feels like home!

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I got this e-mail from my friend and found it very interesting. It really made me think...

 

What is eaten in one week:

Take a good look at the family size and diet of each country, and the availability and cost of what is eaten in one week.

 

pictures from "Hungry Planet: What the World Eats" by Peter Menzel

 

 

1 - Germany: The Melander family of Bargteheide

 

Food expenditure for one week: 375.39 Euros or $500.07

get-attachment.aspx?uid=1.19501690&folder=Saved&partId=9

 

 

2 - United States: The Revis family of North Carolina

 

Food expenditure for one week $341.98

get-attachment.aspx?uid=1.19501690&folder=Saved&partId=17

 

 

3 - Italy: The Manzo family of Sicily

 

Food expenditure for one week: 214.36 Euros or $260.11

get-attachment.aspx?uid=1.19501690&folder=Saved&partId=12

 

 

4 - Mexico: The Casales family of Cuernavaca

 

Food expenditure for one week: 1,862.78 Mexican Pesos or $189.09

get-attachment.aspx?uid=1.19501690&folder=Saved&partId=16

 

 

5 - Poland: The Sobczynscy family of Konstancin-Jeziorna

 

Food expenditure for one week: 582.48 Zlotys or $151.27

get-attachment.aspx?uid=1.19501690&folder=Saved&partId=11

 

 

6 - Egypt: The Ahmed family of Cairo

 

Food expenditure for one week: 387.85 Egyptian Pounds or $68.53

get-attachment.aspx?uid=1.19501690&folder=Saved&partId=10

 

7 - Ecuador: The Ayme family of Tingo

 

Food expenditure for one week: $31.55

get-attachment.aspx?uid=1.19501690&folder=Saved&partId=14

 

 

8 - Bhutan: The Namgay family of Shingkhey Village

 

Food expenditure for one week: 224.93 ngultrum or $5.03

get-attachment.aspx?uid=1.19501690&folder=Saved&partId=15

 

 

9 - Chad: The Aboubakar family of Breidjing Camp

 

Food expenditure for one week: 685 CFA Francs or $1.23

get-attachment.aspx?uid=1.19501690&folder=Saved&partId=13

 

 

Food for thought, huh?

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I think we spend less party because Dristan only eats one meal a day at home. He usually eats what ever is served at work. Which cuts out the cost of fixing him meals.

But we also watch the sales on meat and we only buy the major brands on certain items like Ranch dressing. I try to buy the cheaper store brands and it seems to help. We also don't buy a lot of snack foods.

I try to set down at the end of each month and write out a menu of the month coming up. Then I make my grocery list from that. It's helped. We still get a few items not on the list.

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Apparently we're spending around $300 dollars a month on food which seems like that's pretty good.

 

My wife is an uber shopper. She always finds good deals and we always seem to have ourselves well stocked on the foods we need. It isn't often we have chips or other junk food and if we do it's becuase I've had to go out and buy some food. =P

 

My wife plans out our meals so we know... or she knows... what we'll be eating ever day of the week. She normally plans out one week at a time and will purchase additional food if we lack something on hand for another week.

 

Thankfully we've slowly tried to purchase foods when the prices are good to help build up additional food storage.

 

I also only eat one meal a day at home (usually) and if I eat more than that it's just some cereal or a sandwich... or two.

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So I see Crom was the last one to post here in 2008.  Well I thought I'd share some ways we have saved recently. 

 

#1 - My family chore is laundry.  I do the laundry on the weekends.  Let it be known that my teenage kids do their own laundry, so I only do that of my wife and I.  However, with the exorbitant price of laundry soap I did some searching and found a homemade powder recipe on the internet (I tried homemade liquid but found it too messy).  I've modified it a bit but our laundry is clean every week.  I only need 1 tablespoon per load (YES only ONE tablespoon!).  Half for a small load and heaping for an extra large load. 

 

I use 1/2 bar of grated Fels-Naptha, 2 cups of 20 Mule Team Borax, and 2 Cups of Arm and Hammer Super Washing Soda.  Mix it really well in a bowl. 

 

I keep it in a canning jar with a plastic tablespoon.  I make 2 jars at a time due to splitting the Fels-Naptha bar.  You can also add scented laundry crystals of your choice, but I find that the Fels-Naptha smells good enough for me.

 

#2- This really isn't a money saver, per se, but it could end up saving you money.  Ever burn something so bad while cooking that it burnt to the bottom of your pot/pan?  What did you do?  I found a solution on Pinterest that made me skeptical until I tried it.  My wife made some noodles and accidentally forgot to check on them so they got burnt to the bottom of one of our pans.  Instead of scrubbing for hours with steel wool and elbow grease I did the following and it worked!

 

Rinse the pot/pan to make sure all the crud is out of it.  Then, pour enough hydrogen peroxide in the pot/pan to cover the burnt stuff.  Add some baking soda and mix it with the peroxide.  I let my pan sit overnight.  Then take a towel/washrag and wipe it all out.  Good as new!  I showed my wife the pan and she was floored, as was I.

 

Hope these help! 

Edited by Jacobo

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