I've been doing alot of reading here lately on different blogs about being frugal & thrifty; the homemaker that God wants us to be. I like this definition that I found online:
1. economical in use or expenditure; prudently saving or sparing; not wasteful: a frugal manager.
Here's what Proverbs 31 has to say~
'Who can find a virtuous woman? For her price is far above rubies. The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her. She will do him good & not evil all the days of her life. She...worketh willingly with her hands. She is like THE MERCHANT SHIPS; she bringeth her food from afar. She openeth her mouth with wisdom; & in her tongue is the law of kindness. She looketh well to the ways of her household & eateth not the bread of idleness. Her children arise up & call her blessed; her husband also, & he praises her...a woman that feareth the Lord, she shall be praised.'
I love that phrase...Like Merchant Ships....if you notice over to the right in my blog links there is a great blog entitled 'Like Merchant Ships'. She has some awesome advice & tips....be sure & check it out!!
Along with all my blog-reading, I also checked out a book at the library the other day...'The Tightwad Gazette' by Amy Dacyczyn. I've only gotten so far into it....trying to make notes as I go along....stuff I want to share here. But what I've been amazed at so far......is the stuff that we already do & just take for granted. For instance....here's a list from her book of '10 Painless Ways to Save $100 This Year':
1. Purchase 10 articles of clothing at a thrift store/yard sale.........No problem....do that ALL the time anyway!
2. Hang 4 loads of laundry per week....Also very Do-able for me. I hang as much as I can out anyway. Smells so nice after it's been on the line.
3. Once a month, make a pizza from scratch instead of ordering out.....Ashley laughed out loud at this one...we do this on Saturday night every other week & HAVE for ages now.
4. Write a good letter (or email) instead of making a long distance phone call......I added in the email part because this is what we do. I chat with mom every day online & also my best buddy, Danielle. Both of which would be long distance calls if we talked on the phone.
5. Reduce your soda consumption by at least 4 cans per week......The only SODA (us southern folk drink COKE) consumed in this house is what Chris takes to school...one each day. I hardly ever bought Cokes before then. Unless we just happen to pick some up on special occassions....but it's NOT an every day thing. And of course, what I DO buy is on sale.....like today....stocked up at Food Lion for the last couple weeks of school & the guys' fishing trips they take. Pepsi products were 12 pk cases.....4/$11....that's $2.75 per 12 pk.
6. Bake one batch of bread per week......OK, so ONE thing off this list that I DON'T do. ;-P
7. Save $50 each on 2 kid's BD parties by making homemade decorations, cake, wrapping paper, etc.........DUH!***See notes below***
8. Reduce your smoking by 3 cigarettes per day......Ummmm.....we don't smoke.
9. Reduce your whole milk consumption by 2 Gallons per week...........I can't even remember back to a time when we ever drank whole milk. Maybe for the babies when they were little, but we've always drank skim.
10. Pack 4 inexpensive lunches per week..............Chris most always takes a lunch & Clay tries to. Pretty easy for him having access to a frige & microwave, etc. I usually just pack him leftovers from supper the night before.
***As to the birthday parties......I ALWAYS bake my birthday cakes. Don't ever think I have gotten them a store-bought cake. As for the wrapping paper....we do alot of gift bags & of course you MUST save them & reuse them. We have this one blue gift bag with polka dots & sparkly blue fingies around the edge....I don't even know who gave a gift in it first.....but that bag has been around & around & around.....between Sarah, me, Ella & Maw. I have the bag right now & it's so sad...ripped down one side & I was just going to toss it....thought we had certainly gotten our money's worth out of it, but the kids had a fit & said we COULDN'T toss the blue birthday bag. So, in true 'hill-billy' fashion....I whipped out the duct tape & fixed 'er right up! Ha! Here's a little run-down of how much I spent for Jon's BD today. (which doesn't include the bow he's getting......it IS his 13th BD after all!)
~3 Old Navy Tshirts-$1.99 each ($5.97)
~various little tools-$4.60
~candles- already had some in my drawer
+ 7.15-cake/ice cream
For a Grand Total of $21.72! Not too bad at all!
And BTW, the wrapping paper this year was .84 from the clearance bin at Target!