What exactly does frugal lifestyle mean? I believe it’s being smart and savvy in your choices. Prioritize and take control of what’s important to you and you will come out ahead.
This blog and website offers frugal tips and money saving ideas to help you live a richer life. Save money on everyday living. Start living the "Frugal Lifestyle" today.
Choosing to live the frugal life also means adhering to certain lifestyle changes. These changes were discussed in a previous post here on The Frugal Lifestyle, and they all involve cutting costs on aspects like transport, food, and home maintenance. Aside from those mentioned, being resourceful is also a vital part of frugal living. If you are creative enough to think of ways to repurpose old or unusable household items into things that you can use, you have the potential to save even more money. Even those who aren’t particular crafty can learn with a little patience and inspiration. So with that in mind, here are some great recycling ideas to get you started.
Turn Wine Bottles into Garden Lights
It’s natural for households to spend on decorations, drinks, food, and other celebratory items during the holidays. Fortunately, you can find other purposes for these things after they’ve been used up, long after the holiday season has passed. Lifehacker shared a mood lighting project that involves old wine bottles and Christmas lights. Basic tools are needed, as you will need to drill a hole in the side of the bottle in order to insert a strand of Christmas lights. This lamp can be used for indoor mood lighting or as a porch light throughout the year.
Transform a Table Using Old CDs
There is no need to throw away old CDs when you can use them to transform an old piece of furniture. Using a strong pair of scissors, simply break the CDs into small pieces so that can be arranged into a mosaic. You can then glue these pieces onto an old table to give it a new look. After decorating his garden table with pieces of old CDs, a user called Emzul shared the finished product on Imgur. The CD-studded table looked like a brand new piece of furniture. You can take inspiration from projects like this to reduce the desire to buy new furniture and find new ways to liven up old ones that are still usable.
Repurpose an Old Suitcase as a Cabinet
Unused suitcases can take up a lot of space to store. The natural thing to do would be to throw them out or sell them. But there is also the option to repurpose them as cabinets. Now, such a project may need advanced crafting skills, so do ask for help from experienced DIY-ers if possible. In Mel Lockcuff’s suitcase medicine cabinet tutorial, she used boards, screws, L brackets, and drywall anchors. These are used to make the shelves and to keep the cabinet in place. The finished product will add a vintage flair to whichever room you hang it in.
Make Desk Organizers with Toilet Roll Tubes
Your home office can become a chaotic mess if you don’t have proper organizers for your supplies. Luckily, you can fashion a desk organizer out of one of the most discarded household items: the toilet roll tube. Foxy Bingo’s guide to random uses for household items details how you can use toilet roll tubes to store cables. To make the tubes more attractive, you can decorate them with washi tape or paint them in the color of your choice. Aside from cables, you can also store pens, paper clips, and other crafts supplies.
Fashion a Reusable Bag Out of Old Shirts
Supermarkets may provide reusable shopping bags, but they don’t usually come for free. Instead of buying one, you can do the environment an even better favor by recycling old clothes. There are many ways to create a t-shirt bag, as clearly stated on Things We’ll Make’s post on ‘8 Ways to Make a Bag From a Shirt’. You can either do a bit of sewing or go the no-sew, fringed shirt bag route. It's also worth noting that reusable shopping bags sold by stores often use materials that are not easily washable. People almost never wash these bags as a result, thereby increasing the risk of product contamination. T-shirt bags, however, can be easily thrown into the laundry to clean.
Summer is in full swing, and the 4th of July weekend is upon us! How do you plan to celebrate this year? Although you don't need to do something extravagant, it's quite patriotic to celebrate our country's independence the way most Americans have done for so many years... with fireworks, BBQ, hot dogs and an overall good time! I've listed a few frugal ways to celebrate the 4th of July weekend festivities! Enjoy your 4th and have a blast :)
BACKYARD BBQ - If you are hosting a 4th of July party, make it a potluck event. Have you friends bring other food or drinks that you won't be serving yourself. For instance someone can bring the appetizers, while another bring the drinks, another can bring the dessert and so on. You can get creative with the food, like flag inspired pies or cakes, even hot dogs! You can also serve food that's already red, white or blue - like watermelon, whip cream topped dessert, and blue colored drinks (or blue M&M's)!!
PARTY SUPPLIES - For you party stuff, go to your local dollar store and pick up a few 4th of July themed party supplies and decor. Or you can simply group together items you already have that are red, white & blue or stars & stripes and display them on your food table or around the area where your guests will be hanging out. You can also use red, white & blue bandanas as pennant decorations, as in the photo above.
THE BEACH - If you aren't in a party mood, you can always head to the beach. There's usually some 4th of July festivity going on. The beach will most like be crowded, park your car a little further away to avoid paying for expensive beach parking. Pack a light lunch, so you won't be tempted to buy food there. Sit back, relax and sink your toes in the sand.
PARADES & EVENTS - There are several cities and towns hosting Independence Day parades or other related events. Check your local listings for one near you. Most of the parades are usually followed by a fireworks display. Again, park your car a little further away to avoid expensive event parking cost.
FIREWORKS - Check your local listings for free fireworks display. They are usually held by the water... the beach, the bay, the marina, etc... Or, you might be lucky enough to live somewhere where you can see the fireworks display from your own backyard.
MUSIC FESTIVALS - There are some free music events and concerts you can attend on the 4th of July weekend and all summer long. Check your local listings for one near you.
For more frugal things to do this summer... check out my post about 10 Frugal, Fun and Free Things To Do This Summer!
It always makes me a little sad to know summer has to come to an end - as it does every year:( Why not enjoy the rest of this summer season by indulging in some fun and free summertime activities this long Labor Day weekend. Labor Day is seen as the unofficial end of summer.
Although the Fall/Autumn season doesn't actually begin until Friday, September 22, 2017 - some of the hottest days of the year occur in September (we are experiencing a heat wave now, with temps above 100 degrees - yikes)! So go ahead - celebrate, stay cool, relax, enjoy the long Labor Day weekend with these frugal and fun ideas!
I know most people can now read their favorite mag on their tablet, laptop or smart phone. However, I still prefer to read my magazines the old fashion way.
I like to snuggle under a blanket at night and read one of my favorite gossip rags, or browse for inspirations from a home decor magazine, or bask in the sun on a lounge chair on some exotic beach vacation flipping through the latest fashion magazine!
Some of my favorite magazines are Country Living, Lucky, Entertainment Weekly, Money and InStyle. I of course, will never pay newsstand price for my favorite magazines! I found some savvy ways you can read for mags less... read on:
One of the many things I want to try to make are my own sundry items - such as liquid soap, laundry detergent, dishwashing detergent, etc... Not only are they more economical, making our own will also better for our health and our environment.
One of my favorite websites SavvySugar.com reports that many cleaning fluids, such as anti-bacterial liquid soap, contain methylisothiazolinone, a chemical found to be allergenic, cytotoxic and linked to nerve cell death, as well as Triclosan, another anti-bacterial chemical registered with the Environmental Protection Agency as a pesticide and is believed to destroy fragile aquatic ecosystems.
I already use all-natural bars of soap, but it gets messy and doesn't look as good as liquid soap inside a stylish dispenser that goes well with my bathroom decor! Alas, I found a recipe online where I can make natural liquid soap from a bar!
Supplies you will need:
Step by step instructions:
Happy Thrifty Tuesday! I strive to save money as much as possible everyday. So far, I've been fortunate in achieving that. Although at times there have been some unexpected emergency expenses such as car repairs, etc.. When this happens, I make sure I make up for it the following month.
In a nutshell, these 10 thrifty tips I've listed below have helped me and other people I know cut down on their monthly expenses. I hope these practical tips will inspire some of you to do the same.
1. Create a Budget: determine a realistic monthly budget and stick to it.
2. Eat at Home: cook at home as much as possible and eat your leftovers!
3. Shop Thrift Stores and Yard Sales: stop paying retail for perfectly decent furniture, clothes and more.
4. Use Coupons: be on the lookout for coupons you will actually use from stores you shop.
5. Recycle: bring bottles, cans, newspapers, cardboard, etc... to your local recycle center and get cash!
6. Use Rewards or Loyalty Cards: such as credit card, coffee card, airline card, auto club card, etc...
7. Shop Around: before buying a relatively expensive item, it pays to shop around for the best price.
8. Get Cash-back: when shopping online, receive cash-back or rebates on sites such as Mr. Rebates.
9. Dollar Stores: shop for non-food items such as greeting cards, office, kitchen & laundry supplies.
10. Homemade Gifts: create unique gifts such as fresh baked cookies, plant arrangements, jewelry, etc...
Happy Thrifty Tuesday! I've added more money saving tips!
1. Cook at home more and eat out less often.
2. Make your own homemade gifts.
3. Walk whenever you can, saves gas and is a great exercise.
4. Be aware of bank fees and avoid out-of-network ATM fees.
5. Host a clothes, bags, shoes swapping party with friends.
6. Cancel your landline, rely on your mobile phone.
7. Pay bills online and save money on postage stamps.
8. Cancel your cable and watch your favorite shows online.
9. Turn off lights when not in use.
10. Make a grocery list before heading to the supermarket.
11. Shop thrift stores, garage sales and second hand stores.
12. Instead of a fancy hair salon, get a haircut at a cheaper salon.
13. Upcycle and re-purpose old items vs. discarding them.
14. Use a rewards credit card and pay balance off every month.
15. Order water instead of expensive drinks when dining out.
16. Pack light when traveling to avoid checking in luggage.
17. Join loyalty and rewards programs for perks and discounts.
18. Rent movies instead of paying high theater prices.
19. Always comparable shop to get the best price.
20. Keep all receipts in case you need to return something.
21. Grow your own food, such as herbs and vegetables.
22. Shop dollar stores for basic essential stuff.
23. Wash your laundry in cold water.
24. Shop around for cheaper auto insurance.
25. Consider a vacation rental home instead of a hotel.
Happy Thrifty Tuesday! I want to share some money saving tips when it comes to staging a home to sell. When my boyfriend Jim and I bought a house to flip a few years back, I not only wanted to save money on "staging" or furnishing the tiny cottage, but I wanted to spend practically zero money!
As we got closer to furnishing the house, I was telling Jim... wouldn't it be nice if I could "find" a couch, table, desk, etc.. to save money. Well, wouldn't you know it - the very next day, someone left a perfectly good couch and side table right outside on the curb! Can you believe how the universe was working in my favor!!
Most of the furniture were generously donated from friends or "found treasures" curbside. They just had to be refinished or painted for a brand new look. You can view the before and after photos on facebook.
Here are my frugal tips on how I saved money (or spent no money at all) on this house flip:
Happy Thrifty Tuesday! In addition to my page on Money Saving Tips For Everyday Living, I'm listing 13 new ways you can save even more money!
If you are reading this and have other money saving tips you would like to share, please add it the "comment" section below.
For other money saving tips on each of the categories listed below, click on the category titles.
1. Use Cash - most people tend to spend less when paying cash vs. a credit card or even a debit card. As an added incentive, some retailers, such as gas stations - offer discounts to cash paying customers in order for them to save money on high bank merchant fees.
2. Pay Bills Online - sign up for auto payments online to pay your bills. Not only do you save money on postage stamps and checks, but it also ensures that your payment is not late - avoiding those pesky late fees!
3. Free Yoga Classes - yoga is one of the best ways to stay fit physically and spiritually. For the months of September and October, select yoga studios are offering one week of free classes for new students! Check out YogaMonth.org for more details.
4. Dental Checkups - to receive low cost dental care, dental schools often have clinics that allow dental students to gain experience treating patients. Contact your local dental school for more information. For affordable dental plans, visit DentalPlans.com.
5. Eye Exams - if you are 65 and better, you can receive free eye examinations, plus a one-year follow up by volunteer ophthalmologists. For more details, visit EyeCareAmerica.org. If you are looking for affordable eye care, click here.
6. Save Leftovers - don't just reheat your leftovers, get creative - add other ingredients to make a whole new meal. My personal tip - most leftovers taste better with butter, garlic and onions!
7. Cheap Breakfast - feast on IKEA's breakfast plate of scrambled eggs, bacon and potatoes for only 99¢. Check your local IKEA store for other cheap (and yummy good) eats throughout the day.
8. Grow Your Own - save money on herbs such as basil, cilantro, rosemary or lavender. Plant your own herb garden or potted herbs to add to salads and meals. Plant and grow your own vegetables and fruits too.
9. Save On Insurance Cost - if you are on the market for a new or pre-owned vehicle, consider purchasing an SUV, a pick up truck or even a mini-van. These types of vehicles usually cost less to insure than others. Compare auto insurance cost here.
10. Free Air Checks - keep your tires inflated to maximize gas mileage, especially on long trips. Low tire pressure robs gas mileage - up to three miles per gallon! Get free air checks at tire centers such as Discount Tire stores.
11. Read Customer Reviews - if you don't have a reliable mechanic and are looking to get your car repaired in the near or immediate future, it's helping to read customer reviews on sites such as Yelp.com. Determine if a certain repair shop or mechanic fits your need from the customer's experiences on the reviews.
12. Free Stuff - who doesn't like free stuff? However, only take freebies if you actually need them or will use them in the future. Otherwise, they are just junk that is taking up space in your house. If you are looking for something in particular, go to Craigslist.org under their FREE section. Also check out FreeCycle.org - a network of members who are giving (and getting) stuff for free in their own towns. It's all about reuse and keeping good stuff out of landfills. For other freebie tips, click here.
13. Free Samples - many companies give away samples to consumers to try out hoping they will like it and purchase their full size product down the line. Check out sites like MrFreeStuff.com for free samples and other free goodies.
Happy Thrifty Tuesday! Fortunately (for most of us) we only have to think about these big expenses every 5 or 30 years! For some, the time frame is less, depending on their circumstances and budget.
If you are considering purchasing any of the 5 big ticket items I've listed below, I offer some frugal tips on how one can save some bucks along the way!
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