Monday, June 11, 2012

Yeah, I Can Actually Be Frugal...

photo credit
If you have been following my blog for the past seven months (since I gave birth to my third and final baby) you have probably noticed the total erosion of my frugal-ness. Something about having a new baby along with two older kids seemed to have put me into survival mode and my coupons and budget just flew out the window.

I am starting to get back into things though I have been spending way more money on food than I have in the past, some of which I blame on my decision to only buy all natural meat (no hormones, humanely raised, etc.). I feel like spending $100 a week on food for my family is a good number but man oh man, a few years ago I would have crapped my pants if I spent that much a week on food.

So, as I have established, my food shopping leaves much to be desired in the frugal department. Just because I stink at that doesn't mean that I don't do other things that are frugal. I can be frugal! I can!

Here are some things that my lazy butt does (and if I can do them then anyone can do them):

-We use rags. I don't go and buy rags to use; I cut up old shirts, sheets, socks or whatever else is made of cloth. Once I run out of rags I wash them in the washing machine- usuall about every two weeks because I have quite the collection. We do still use paper towels occasionally but to hinder my husband from partaking in the paper towels too much I moved them away from the sink to the other side of the kitchen. You want a paper towel the you gotta work for it.

-I don't have a fancy shmancy cell phone with tons of bells and whistles; I have a prepaid TracFone. I rarely use my cell phone so if you average out how much I spend on minutes it come to less than $10 a month. My husband is into the fancy stuff and has an Iphone but his work pays for it. I actually just bought a new TracFone which is refereed to "the poor man's Iphone" so I guess I'm now into the late 1990's with my cell phone technology.

-I buy my kids' clothing on clearance with a coupon. I stock up on off season clothing and put everything in bins until it is needed. By doing this I am never pressed to have to buy something last minute at a price I don't want to pay. My main place to buy clothing for the kids is the Gap- I have the silver store card which means that I get free shipping on every online purchase (you have to spend $800 a year to get this but between the kids, my husband and me this is so doable). This in itself is worth its weight in gold because I don't have to leave the house to buy clothes with three screaming kids but I also get $10 for every $200 I spend and exclusive cardmember coupons. It is really important to me to buy high quality clothes, especially because my older daughter's clothing gets passed down to the baby. Plus, Gap clothes seem to sell well.

-I use powdered laundry detergent that I buy in bulk. I use Charlie's Soap powder detergent because I like that it leaves no smell and doesn't have weird chemicals in it. I recently bought a 1000+ load bucket of the powder which cost me about $100- this equals .10 a load. Pretty darn frugal if you ask me!

-I do not buy regular household cleaners anymore (except for Pledge- can't live without it). I have a one gallon jug of Biokleen which is super concentrated. I mix a couple of tablespoons and water in a spray bottle and I have an awesome all purpose cleaner- it actually cleans glass better than Windex and it's all natural. Plus it smells good and I know that it is safe to use around the kids.

Maybe there are more things but that is all I can think of right now. I know I won't win any awards for my frugal-ness but what I do works for me; it's lazy frugal-ness and I love it!

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  1. I think a lot of us coupon crazies have cut back a lot..I know I have..Just for the simple fact Im not gonna load up on crap cause its free then have to throw it away or donate it.

  2. I know what you mean, I realize now more than ever that something has got to give when you have a bunch of rug rats running around. For me that means that I can't chase the deals I used to. Like you said buying tons of cheap stuff only to end up throwing away or donating it is such a waste of the little time us moms of three have (and your going to be a mom of four soon!).