Thursday, September 22, 2011

Frugal -- Cheap -- You decide

So, I'm always looking for ways to cut my big costs down.  As my kids get older and eat more and their acitvities cost more, I'm looking for ways to cut out excess but still provide a wonderful life.  Here are a few ideas that I've tried lately!

Shopping... One of my big methods is to stay out of the stores!  The longer I can wait, the better I do.  I've attached a magnetic pad of paper to my refrigerator and I'm training everyone in the house to write down what we need.  Then, when I do head into a store I can choose to pick up the items if they are a great price, or I can choose to wait for another time.

Cash... I'm also trying to use more cash when shopping... it makes me more accountable to my budget.

In the kitchen... with the abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables from the farm right now, I don't want anything to go to waste.  We have some wonderful tomatoes that were beginning to go bad.  Instead of letting them continue to rot, my friend told me about freezer pasta sauce.  I gave it a try... it is so easy!  {Olive oil and garlic in a pan, huge chunks of tomatoes, seasoning and let cook down for about an hour and a half. When finished puree and freeze.} I've made several batches and even purchased more tomatoes so that we will benefit from our homemade sauce for several months.

I also picked blackberries at my sisters house {for free!}  I brought home a huge bowl and got to work making jelly.  My husband kids are not fans of seeds, so I spent time straining the seeds from the blackberries, but it wasn't too much work and they will all be happy.  The kids even helped with a few batches which gave them pride and satisfaction of making something for our family.

{With my thought of being frugal I also want to provide healthy meals for my family... I don't know that my tomato sauce adventure is really frugal... I'm sure I could find sauce with coupons and on sale for much cheaper, however, my sauce is full of other "stuff"... however, I may have thrown in some eggplant and such :)}

How cute is Phinneous!??!?!

My supplies
Finished product
Laundry... I do massive amounts of laundry! I've seen recipes for making laundry soap and decided to give it a try.  I made the liquid soap with the kids... we had a great time and it didn't take too long.  I started using it yesterday and I must say it smells good and our clothes look clean, so I must declare it's working.  I'm keeping track of the number of loads of wash I'm able to do.  The supplies cost me about $6 and I'm told it should do 576 loads of laundry... so cool!!!

What ideas do you have?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

oooh - do send me the recipe for laundry soap when you get a chance!

A few years ago, one of my friends did a cost analysis of canning her own spaghetti sauce vs. homemade - and it came to about even.....but I can guarantee one thing. My homemade tomato sauce tastes a lot better AND there aren't any preservatives or "extra" things in there. So - it has to be better.