Living on Less

Thank you to all who attended The library Living on Less class. We had a great day and I learned some myself. I just love how we all can help each other in this down time in our economy.

Living on Less

Someone once told me “Don’t make your net worth more important than your self-worth!” It stuck with me because when broke it is easy to have a poor me attitude. For me I have to get the attitude of providing for my family….a kind of hunter/gather  looking for ways to provide for my family. When we have been at our lowest financially I can remember looking around the house asking what can we sell.

Last night, we had spaghetti….. no garlic bread so we used bread and bagels toasted with garlic butter.It was great and no boys complained. SCORE one for frugal!

How are you living on less….. I would love to hear. Have a blessed day, Candy

Practice makes perfect!

We are very blessed because our school offers choir, band and orchestra Instrument lesson. I know it isn’t always possible to give your child Private lessons. When things were tight we did discuss not following through with the Private lessons. I don’t know how we did, but it all worked out.

Our children have private lessons and the Toledo symphony offers a youth orchestra. All we ask of our children is to practice. One of our boys wasn’t practicing. Randy and I decided if he didn’t practice he would pay his lesson fee.

Week one: We told him and still he didn’t practice. So I took the money out of his account.

Week two: no practicing and I used his money. He was ticked and wanted to know why I was doing this….I told him why use my money each week if he wouldn’t practice. he thought is was dumb and all he had to do is practice.

Week three: No practice…….His money

Week four: His money and then he said “I don’t think it is fair you used my money I am saving it” I said all you have to do is practice and dad and I will pay.

Week five: I am hearing music each day. I think he got the message!

Another valuable lesson! Candy

Will work for food!

A church sign read and thought it was fitting for all who are struggling.

Trying times are not the time to stop trying.

Don’t give up and as my grandma Young would  say “better days are coming!” I feel like they are just around the corner.

There are so many people struggling. I have seen more people standing on the corner with a sign that reads “Will work for food”  I am a little leery because last year a lady came to our church asking for food. I gave her a bag of food and she said “What do you expect me to do with this?” I said it is a bag of food she said”I take the bus I can’t carry this I want money or a Kroger gift card”  When I told her I didn’t have any money to give her she left the bag of food. That changed me…….

“Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.”  Chinese Proverb

How can we learn to fish and care for ourselves and family? I don’t know about you, but when we are the most broke we actually eat better. Why? Because I plan I look at what we have and take the time to prepare.

  1. Shop in you own cupboards….Look at what you have you may be surprised.
  2. Smaller potions~ Why do we feel like we have to fill up our whole plate? Half the time I think why did I eat so much. Try using smaller plates and see if we are satisfied.
  3. Don’t eat after 7pm this will help save food and you will be healthier.
  4. Drink water
  5. Church suppers are usually a free will offering. You will get a great meal and great fellowship.
  6. Add things to your meal that will fill you up and/or spread your meal Like rice, noodles or a piece of bread.
  7. Plan for leftovers you can make 1 meal into two. recreate your leftovers or have 1 night a week leftover night were your family eats up all those leftovers. Even the Lord talked about saving Leftovers. “When they were filled, He said to His disciples, “Gather up the leftover fragments so that nothing will be lost.” John 6:12
  8. Using coupons is really work for food. It takes work, but you can really get a nice stockpile going. I have heard some say “I hate coupons because I buy things I don’t need just so I can use the coupon” This may be true, but I have found many things I would have not bought if I didn’t have a coupon that has made our life easier. Like Pillsbury pizza crust.

I would love to hear how you really work to save money. Have a blessed day, Candy

School Fees and Clothes

I was floored when I went to register my children this year. $258 for fees, $125 pay to play, $70 yearbook which Lyndsey bought. Lunches are $3.50 – $3.75 this year. This is a house payment for me.Then you add shoes, clothes and supplies for your children. What are parents to do?

This year I bought school shoes and 2 shirts, a pair of jeans and a pair of shorts. I will add as I can, but the days of my mom are gone. You may ask what do I mean? My mom bought us all new right down to the socks and underwear and they only had one income. This is what the women of her day did.   When our oldest started school and I was surprised to learn it doesn’t have to be this way and was relieved!

I am trying some of my mom’s tricks: When the boys get home from school they will be changing clothes and wearing their older shoes. This way I figure I can get some extra life out of the school clothes and shoes.

I would love to hear how you are surviving the school days!

Have a great day, Candy

One income family….surviving unemployment

I have been thinking a lot about one income families. With the state of our economy many families are forced into this thinking.

If you know there is a pending unemployed time. What should you do?

  • Add to your stockpile. I am surprised by buying a few extra things each shopping trip I have a nice little stockpile.
  • Look at your bills… Is there is anything you can eliminate. newspaper, cable or maybe home phone.
  • Check with your child’s school about free or reduced lunches.
  • Angel food or Great food for all both offer a box of groceries for a reasonable amount. Go to their sites to find a location and box types.
  • I love the Library….a frugal girls dream! You can rent movies, magazines and books. They offer all kinds of classes and have computer help. If you get rid of you internet this is somewhere you can go and use their computers. They even have the newspaper to look for job listings.

How to save everyday at home

  • Shut those lights off?
  • Only wash full loads in the dishwasher. In the rinse aid container I use vinegar.
  • Potlucks– church potlucks are a free will offering or want to have a family get together….make it a potluck!
  • Laundry– wash in cold water, use less laundry soap and hang dry what you can.
  • Plan and prepare I don’t know about you but when we are the most broke I seem to prepare/plan more. Knowing I don’t have the money to go out and buy I use what I have in my cupboards…my stockpile.
  • Be creative with Leftovers–  A great example was this weekend we were at a party and My friend gave me a giant bag of chunk cheese. I cooked it down in a big pot with some milk and added it to cooked macaroni noodles. I baked it and added bread crumbs as a topper. The whole meal was less than $2.00.
  • Grow a garden– What a great feeling when you have your own produce.

For our family leaning to say No has helped. I have a friend that told me “No is a complete sentence. you may feel uncomfortable at that moment but you will be glad you did.” I have also learned I can’t keep up with the Jones…..

Have a great night and I’ll talk more on this tomorrow. Candy

Back to School on a budget

Wow! Summer is going fast and I am thinking back to school. Paula at Monroe on a Budget and I will be teaming up at the Rossford library on August 9, 2010 to talk  “back to school on a budget” so to gear up each day we are going to have another topic to discuss. Starting August 1, 2010 to August 9, 2010. The Monroe Evening  News and Paula will be having a back to school edition. Paula has so many great ideas….. make sure to check that out.  I would also love any of your ideas you may like to share. Our first day August 1, 2010 and that  will be  school supplies.

Have a great day, Candy

A true frugal Queen….

Families coping even Queen Elizabeth II is frugal!

Here are a few of her tips:

Keep Buckingham Palace open to visitors for longer periods to generate more income for the upkeep of royal palaces.

Recycle all bars of soap from all royal homes and turn them into liquid foam bath oil. (I wonder who uses the bars I may need think about this one)

if you would like to read the story CBS Money- Saving tips from the Queen

Thank you to Paula at Monroe on a Budget for sharing.

Have a blessed day,