There's no faster way to see my kids (and husband) scatter than to tell them that we have to talk about saving money. To their credit, they have been pretty understanding and have cheerfully participated in family yard sales and monthly trips to the thrift store for clothes. Still, rather than cajole, trick and coerce them into saving money on household items, I've taken up some sneaky methods. So far, so good and I'm happy to share with you what's working for me.
We joined a local wine club. My hubby's wine-sipping hobby was getting expensive but he enjoys it so much. Instead of spending money on pricy wines, he joined a local wine club. This club encourages members to recycle their wine bottles by offering a discount on their monthly flavors. When you turn in the empties, we get a nice reduced price. (I had never tried muscadine wine before. Yum!) We save around $30 a month with the local selections.
I buy groceries online. Just five years ago I wouldn't have dreamed of shopping online for household items like groceries and shampoo but now it's a money-saving reality. By shopping online I avoid the crowds, skip the impulse buys and I don't have to cut out coupons. My favorite grocery store offers a store brand, which always saves me money. I pay a $5 delivery fee each time but that still saves me money because I'm more likely to stick to my budget by shopping online. I've saved over $100 a month. Good bye expensive deli and calorie-rich bakery!
The entire family shops and sells consignment. Once every season, the family sorts through their closets and drawers in search of clothing that doesn't fit or isn't being worn. I launder them neatly and deliver them to the consignment store. Not everything can be resold, my kids are rough on clothes but a lot of items are sellable. By selling and buying from consignment stores, and thrift stores, I save at least $50 a month.
Set one day aside for baking, cooking and freezing. Eating out used to be a huge household expense but we do much less of that nowadays. Dining out was an easy way to feed everyone and it kept me out of the kitchen after a long day at work. Now, I do all my cooking one day a week. I make a lasagna, a pot of chili and an inexpensive roast. My weekly menus change but you get the idea. I invested in some storage containers that go from freezer to microwave. Now, there's no worrying about what to cook each night. I simply grab and go. I was shocked at the savings: My family of four saved $200 a month!
I swapped to satellite. Not to bash anyone but my local cable company got a bit outrageous. The price went up, the service went down. We swapped in the cable for satellite and we love it. I'm saving over $70 a month.
I renewed my library card. I'm proud that my family loves to read but it's an expensive habit. Even e-books get expensive. We renewed our library cards and make regular visits to the local library. I probably save about $30 a month which isn't a lot but I feel good about this sneaky money-saving method. The kids love it too!
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