I come from a long line of penny pinchers. In my parents’ generation they had to extend the life of household items and repurpose them when their original function had worn out. I learned early on to not waste things and learn to repair, restore and recycle. Extend the life of things like towels into rags, socks into dust cloths, etc. Now it’s the trend to think green, but in my parents’ day the intent was not to save the planet, but extend their pocketbook.
Getting Creative with Household Items to Save Money
There was a time when I purchased household cleaners for each function of the house. It was costly and not very environmentally friendly. Then I thought what a waste and as with most things in frugal living you learn to be creative.
I learned to use items that were in my pantry anyway and find new uses for them, such as White Vinegar as a carpet stain remover and mixed with water as window cleaner, we all know the uses of Baking Soda for deodorizing but when blended with vinegar can be used on slow drains, toothpaste to clean and polish hard water stains from bathroom fixtures, even newspaper to wipe clean windows.
I’m now a single parent and need to challenge myself to be creative on how to stretch every dollar, so frugal living is intentional in all areas of my purchases.
I shop at Thrift Stores to purchase jeans for $10.00, a handbag for $5.00 or dresses for my little girl at $2.00 and $3.00 dollars oh and yes even Thrift stores have items on Sale depending on the color of tag that particular day.
I use coupons on things I would normally buy anyway if it is cost effective or otherwise I buy the generic store brand that is usually less and on sale. Another good tip is joining store rewards clubs for added discounts and promotions.
The local library is a good resource for reviewing magazines, checking out movies for a family night, checking out recipes in cookbooks without having to purchase them. Living in a city that provides many choices in grocery stores and discount stores is very helpful, but there are a lot of resources for shopping online as well.
Having a frugal lifestyle is a matter of choice and requires a certain level of organization and discipline. Also making a conscious choice to not submit to what popular culture defines as quality of living.
I live in a nice place and am able to provide healthy food on the table, clothing myself and my little girl, while living on a modest income. It does require a level of sacrifice and compromise, but I like that I am modeling for my daughter that we can live on less, while living more responsibly with our money and resources. So thanks to my parents example of frugal living, in our house the theme by which we live is Less is More.