Tag Archives: frugal

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frugalMany people can see frugality as being cheap and stingy. However, being frugal doesn't mean you have to make sacrifices.

Here are six ways that you can be frugal without feeling deprived:

Realize Your Priorities

First things first, you have to know where your priorities are. Why spend money going out when you prefer to stay home? Why would you spend money on a huge house when you'd rather travel more often? By realizing your priorities, you'll be able to cut out unnecessary spending and enjoy spending your money on things you actually care about.

Also, instead of saying " I don't have the money for that", you can say "That's not a priority for me right now."

People won't be able to call you cheap if they know where your priorities are. Plus, this keeps you from feeling guilty when you'd rather not spend the money on something you'd rather not be doing. ...continue reading

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DisneylandI'm all for saving money at every step possible when visiting the wallet-emptying vacation spot known as Disneyland. Too often, I've sacrificed convenience for saving money.

While my family's frugality has saved us money on our Disneyland trips that have in part helped make the vacation more affordable, in some ways it has cost us in other ways — time and better experiences. Some splurges are worthwhile.

We took a short trip to the Anaheim, Calif., resort this weekend during the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday, taking our daughter out of school for two days so we could turn it into a long weekend and hopefully enjoy smaller crowds. I'm writing this post ahead of our trip, so by the time this post runs I'll be safely home with a credit card bill awaiting.

Our daughter is 11, and this will be her fourth family trip to Disneyland. Looking at that now, I realize that's a lot of visits, but it is the happiest place on Earth.

I've always thought that after spending about $90 per day per person just to get into one of the parks is so high of a cost that it's imperative that we save money in other ways. While I'm not throwing out all of the financial stops on this trip, there are some high expenses I'm willing to indulge this time because they look to be worthwhile.

Here are some of the ways we're spending more more money, along with frugal ways to help save money so we can afford these extravagances: ...continue reading

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Sometimes, the things I do blow even my own mind. I'm really not even ridiculously frugal; I believe in quality over quantity, and completely understand the value in spending more to get a better product.

I'm a person of convenience, usually. I try to do things in the most efficient and convenient way. I'm not always successful, but I can't stand wasted time.

These few points are the reasoning behind why I do all the things that I do, even the ridiculous things. They make sense in my mind while I'm doing them, and then usually end in failure and/or regret. For instance:

  • In January, I waited in a parking lot for an hour and a half between meetings instead of going home, just to save gas and time. The thing that made this unbelievably dumb is that I was only 7 minutes from home.
  • I park three blocks away from school sometimes to save $3.50 on parking. I go to school in the ghetto. A girl went missing from my school in November.
  • I put every last cent I spend on my credit card. Two reasons. 1) It's easier to track 2) I get a 1% rebate on everything I spend. The thing that makes it ridiculous is that I will never carry cash because of this. Sometimes, stores have spending minimums on credit cards; if you don't hit the minimum, they charge you a $.25 fee to use a credit card. I've wracked up a few of those (making the purpose of the card redundant) because I never carry cash.
  • I've waited in a border lineup for almost an hour to save $10 on gas.
  • I've tried to make pasta from scratch to save (on an already inexpensive food). I don't have a pasta maker or a rolling pin, so it didn't turn out well.
  • I move into the ghetto, where we have crackheads for upstairs neighbours and my property manager, I'm pretty sure, is either: a) the crackhead's daughter or b) an entirely unrelated but equally terrifying individual
  • I once tried to cut my own hair. This might work for some people, but not me. I denied it to my hair stylist a few months later, but I don't think she believed me.
  • Instead of buying expensive cleaners, I use vinegar for everything. I used to mop my floor with it. It worked, but it always smelled horrible. I was too cheap to buy nice smelling oils. To be honest, this is less to save money and more to go green and because chemical cleaners are terrible for your health.
  • One time, I spent half an hour doing a survey that only earned me $1. Then I did it again. I actually didn't learn my lesson until the third or fourth survey, at which point my hand was so tired from clicking through questions that it practically cramped up.
  • Instead of buying a new, cheap black T-shirt after an unfortunate incident with the bleach, I tried to color in the white splotches with permanent black marker. I failed and had to buy a new back t-shirt.

I have no doubt in my mind that I've done thousands of dumb things to both save and make more money in my short life. I doubt I've had much luck in actually saving, because most of these things ended up, or could have ended up, costing me more in the long run. 

So. Readers. What's the most ridiculous thing you've done to save money, or to make more money? This could be fun.