Wednesday, June 27, 2012

On the Cheap Vol. I

1.  Ditch the paper towels (or significantly decrease your consumption).  Paper towels get spendy.  Sure these little guys are handy, but at a price.  At $1.50-$2.50 per roll, the cost of these disposable items adds up.  We used them because we didn't like the idea of a damp, bacteria filled washrag sitting in the sink.  Solution:  Buy a couple packs of bar mop rags ($5.00 for a package of eight at WM) and use them like we would a paper towel.  Toss them in the laundry and use again.  Cost savings per year:  $50

Pic and great info found here

2.  Cloth diapers.  I am SO not the expert on these, and there are thousands of sites, forums, and blogs devoted to the art of cloth diapering.  Let's just say these are not your mama's fold and pin diapers.  We use Fuzzibunz diapers and have since our two year old was born.  Baby number two is also in cloth.  Sure, you have to worry about washing them, but for the price savings and "green factor," it's worth it for our growing family.  We are keeping a huge amount of trash out of landfills, and saving around twenty cents each time we put one of our little guys in cloth.  The diapers are a bit of investment in the beginning, but are totally worth it as you use them longer.  We get ours here.  Cost savings per year for a family with two in diapers: $400.

3.  Coupon or Groupon.    I'm not talking about the crazy couponing strategies seen on reality tv (Seriously though, where do they get the time, energy, and fliers for that?  And who needs 50 boxes of cake mix?).  I don't line up my shopping with weekly sales or coupons.  One thing I do every week before we head to the store, though, is go to and print a few coupons.  I print anything I think we might need in the next month or so, and then when it's on our list I just happen to have a coupon.  Sometimes the stars align and I find coupons for what I need that week, and other times we don't use any.  It's not rocket science, nor is it difficult, but it has saved me from every paying full price for cereal or soap.  Cost savings per year: $50

I am not a weathered Groupon user, but I have purchased a few experience/food related groupons, and they were great deals.  It's a great way to pay for a date night dinner at half price or a trip to the water park at BOGO.   Sign up is free, and you only buy something when it's a perfect fit.  Our best Groupon purchase?  Meat from a local market at half price.

Friday, June 8, 2012

On the Cheap

I quit my job.  Good start to the post, eh?  I'm nervously excited to say that I am taking a temporary break from teaching to be a mom.  I have been wanting to do this since my first baby was born, and have finally made the leap.

There are many new adventures to come, I'm sure, one of them being our ability to stay afloat financially. Many people say to me "That's awesome that you guys can make it work with one income."  Key words: make it work (said Tim Gunn style).  It would be awesome to not have to worry about money and stay home with no concerns, but what challenge would that be?

While I'm beginning my new adventure as a SAHM  (I totally already know the savvy of a mom am I?) I'll be sharing my penny pinching ideas in a series called "On the Cheap."  While I am not the pioneer of frugality, I love me a good bargain or money-saving tip.   So I'll provide you with some goodies, sifted through and hand-picked and experimented with by yours truly.

"On the Cheap"  Series:  Coming Soon!