We had to come up with a plan of action to get the extra debt paid off. We looked at the numbers. Then we looked at them harder. Every area in our budget got slashed. My grocery budget got cut in half and I was terrified we were all going to starve to death. My kids did not get back to school clothes and I worried that they would be teased.
Gone were the days of eating out several times a week. Goodbye mall, hello thrift shops.
Going without and being content with what I already had were foreign ideas to me. It was uncharted territory but I dove in with every part of me-I didn’t have a choice. I started researching things that I could do to make our new budget work and discovered an entire new world. I used to despise cooking; now I dream about it. I used to buy my kids stuff all the time, now I find new ways to use the things they already have.
Do you want to be a fabulous frugal super woman? There are so many things you can do to become more thrifty -little things you can change right now that will have long term benefits. Here are a few ideas to get you started:
- Cut back or totally eliminate eating out-most of its bad for you anyway.
- Learn how to cook beyond boxed meals. It’s amazing what you can do with basic (i.e. cheap) ingredients.
- Utilize your kitchen appliances-like the crock pot that’s been collecting dust in your basement since your bridal shower.
- Stop buying things you don’t need-does your kid really need 10 pairs of shoes? He’s only got two feet.
- Learn how to make your own cleaning supplies and HBA items. It’s a great feeling to make something that in the past I would have bought at the store. Who knew baking soda could be used for shampoo AND deodorant?! Yeah, I’ve gone hard core.
- Make some phone calls and get lower rates on things like your vehicle insurance and trash service. I have saved several hundred dollars on services we already use just by calling around.
- Buy used whenever possible-this saves you money and also keeps stuff out of landfills.
- And of course, use cloth diapers as a way to save money. You can even go a step further and use cloth wipes, cloth towels in the kitchen instead of paper towel, mama cloth, family cloth….you get the idea.
Nothing earth shattering-just simple little things that can save you big money.
Learning to be more frugal has been an experience that has changed my life, I bet it can change yours too.