I hear a lot of people talking about how in order to save money you have to live a boring life, take things to extremes, and overall not be happy. That couldn’t be further from the truth. Saving money is one of the things I pride myself in. I am a mother of three children, the sole provider for my family, so stretching every penny is absolutely needed. Here are a few tips on how we do it.
Cleaning supplies cost a ton of money, but of course we all have to clean so what I do is buy one gallon of vinegar, I dilute this down and make my own cleaners. From hardwood floor cleaner, to all-purpose kitchen cleaner. I also use this in my shampooer if my puppies happen to have an accident when we are not home.
Toys are a huge cost to a lot of parents, the problem is that you go and spend 30 dollars on a Barbie doll only to have her hair matted or cut within the next few days. This goes for all toys, the end up being left outside, or broken very quickly. Kids move on and forget about the toys, the lose interest very fast. The way I have solved this problem is to buy toys from resale shops. I can buy an entire bag of Barbie’s for five dollars, usually with tons of outfits. I brush out their hair and my daughter loves them. The same goes for boys toys. I can buy a Nerf gun for a few bucks, go to the store and get the Nerf bullets for about three bucks. The boys are happy and I just saved about 50 dollars. The kids love going to the resale shops and picking out the toys and I love saving the money.
The third thing I have done to save money is to cut back on the amount of food I serve. Most people cover their plates with food and it usually goes to waste. I serve proper proportions allowing anyone who is still hungry to go back for more. This has benefited our health along with my budget. Along with portion sizes, I try to cook meals that will last for more than one day such as spaghetti. One pot of spaghetti will last us two nights, or I make what I call a spaghetti bake which is almost like lasagna on night two and this allows the spaghetti to last for three nights. I try to do this with as many meals as possible.
Those are the top three changes I have made to save us money, none of which interfere with my social life, nor cause us to live a boring life. There are so many ways you can save if you just look for them, and remember, even if it is 15 dollars here or 10 dollars there, it will all add up over one years’ time.