Things You Hate to do to Save Money

We’ve really been conscious as to where our money’s been going lately, and I’ve been taking many steps to ensure that there is little to no unnecessary spending. There are so many tips and tricks to save money, some of them easier than others; some are downright a pain-in-the-butt. Lots of things I don’t like doing just because they aggravate me or are more work but when you want to conserve as much money as possible, you do them. Here are some of the things I don’t like to do to save money.

-Wash and reuse plastic freezer bags. I feel like it is hard to get these clean, but really it’s not as bad as I make it to be. They drying is the longest part- often when the outside dries I flip them inside out to get the inside to dry. One really good thing about reusing the plastic sandwich bags is that we’re keeping them out of the landfill. We do use glass reusable storage containers, but for some things, plastic freezer bags are the way to go.

-Hang dry laundry. What bugs me about hang drying laundry is that it takes a lot longer than throwing your clothes into the dryer. Also, the clothes come out stiffer than if they were dried in the dryer with wool dryer balls. If it helps save money on the electric bill then it’s worth it. Also, the clothes will hopefully last longer and unnoticed stains are much easier to get out than if the clothes have been dried in the dryer.

-Minimize/consolidate trips. Before, I was taking a trip to Target at least once a week. Now I’m trying to stay home as much as possible to reduce the amount of gas we use and minimize our unnecessary spending. I try to hit up as many stores as possible when I’m out so that my time isn’t wasted and I don’t have to go back out again. I miss (at least) window shopping for fun. It’s also a pain to have to take the baby in and out of the car a bunch of times when I go to many stores.

No poo. Sometimes I get tired of having to mix the baking soda and water, then apply the apple cider vinegar rinse, etc.  I would also love to just wash with a good smelling shampoo and have the scent last.  The nice thing is, with no poo I’m not exposing myself to a bunch of chemicals and I’m also saving a ton over buying all natural shampoo.

-Going without cable.  *Sigh* I love having cable, just because I know mindless tv is right there at my fingertips, but is it really good for us?  No.  Going with Netflix is a much better option to help save money.

First world problems, right?! Overall, these aren’t horrible, they’re just not what I’m used to.  I am hoping that with time they’ll just become second nature and I’ll be used to it!

What things do you do to save money that you don’t like?


I Don’t Have a Cell Phone

I left my job at the bank in January of 2012 before Penny was born. Mr. Money was working for a restaurant and they provided him with a cell phone (an iPhone) that they paid the bill for.  When he lost his job, he obviously lost the previously paid-for cell phone plan.  This left us with a dilemma: we needed to figure out what we were going to do about our cell phone service.  Prior to him having that job, we both had Motorola Razrs (ha!) that we had on a family plan with Verizon.  The phones served their purpose and we had a basic plan. We’ve thought about starting our own business and then we could use both phones for that, but once we realized the importance of business loans we squashed that idea.

Mr. Money became spoiled by the iPhone and wanted to keep the phone active.  We checked with various providers and the plans were around $80 a month, a lot more than I wanted to spend. We discussed putting both of us on a family plan again but I was hesitant to sign a two year contract.  That feels like debt to me, and I don’t like contracts or debt.  The best idea was for Mr. Money to take over my phone number and use his iPhone.

We ended up going with a prepaid option that costs about $45 a month and has unlimited talk, text, and web.  He was able to keep his iPhone so there was no cost for the phone.  The service works great and the only thing we have to do is remember to refill the phone each month.  He receives a text when it’s seven days from coming due, so that is very helpful.

I have no had a cell phone for about nine months now.  I won’t lie, there are some days that I would love to have a smart phone so I could look up something (remember when I was considering getting an iPhone?) or be able to text a friend.  Overall though, it doesn’t bother me and the savings are definitely worth it.

We have a home phone, internet access, and I have an old iPhone I use as an iPod sometimes so it’s not like I need a cell phone.  It is kind of weird to meet new friends and they’ll ask for my number to text and I have to explain that I don’t have a cell phone.  Sometimes I do worry about not having one for emergencies, like when I’m out shopping with Penny, but a lot of the time my sister or Mr. Money are with me so no big deal.  I’ve considered going with a prepaid phone but right now I don’t want to have the added expense so I just do without.

I’m sure I’m in the minority of thirty year olds that don’t have a cell phone.  I figure that people lived without them for so many years that I am able to as well.  I’m not against cell phones, but right now I feel like it’s something that I can do without to save my family money.

Could you live without a cell phone?



Minimalism versus Frugality

I cannot stand having excess “things” around my house.  I like to have things organized and clean for the most part, and when we have too much crap it annoys me.  One thing that I struggle with is trying to figure out what to keep and store versus getting rid of and taking the risk of having to re-buy it eventually.

My mother has been so generous in buying Penny clothes from yard sales and thrift stores.  However, she also has gone a little overboard and we’ve ended up with three ginormous tubs of clothes in the basement that Penny has outgrown.  She’s only wearing 12 month or 18 month clothes right now, so that’s a ton of clothes in newborn-9 month size!

I struggle with deciding if I should keep everything in case we have another girl eventually, or just selling it and giving my mom the money since she bought it all in the first place.  The frugal side of me says it’s silly to get rid of anything because if we do have another girl she can use the clothes and we won’t have to spend anything for the ones we already have.  The minimalist side of me says to sell or donate a lot of it because even if we do have another girl, she may be born in the summer versus winter like Penny, and a lot of the clothes will be opposite season and we won’t be able to use them.

I also feel like babies don’t really need that many clothes in their wardrobe anyway and I can always sell or donate some of the clothes and if we need to buy a few pieces of clothing in the future I’m sure I can find it second hand.

The other problem I have is the logistics of selling.  Consignment stores take a huge cut, children’s clothing sales may or may not be worth it, and if you only get fifty cents for an item, is it really worth selling?

It’s not like the clothes are causing me any inconvenience by sitting in tubs in the basement (other than the fact I could use that storage space for other things) so I feel silly even worrying about them.

How do you balance minimalism versus frugality? 

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