I remember it like it was yesterday. The sun was shining, birds were chirping, excitement was in the air. With my membership card in hand, I proudly marched through the doors of the massive warehouse club. Then, I stopped dead in my tracks. There was just so. much. stuff. How on earth was I supposed to decide what I should buy in bulk? Were the prices really that good? Or could I get some items at my local grocery store for less?
I ended up making two huge newbie mistakes that day.
Since I began simplifying my life, I’ve discovered that I do not buy many of the things I once thought were essential. A welcome side-effect of simplifying my life has been that I have also been able to simplify my shopping list! Here’s a list of 40 things I no longer buy (and I can’t believe I ever did).
Have you been thinking of starting a blog but have held off because you don’t know where to begin? Or, are you a newbie blogger who wants to make sure you are doing things correctly? If you answered “yes” to either of these questions, this post is for you. If you could care less about blogging, please check out the archives where you will find articles on simple living, home organization, living in a small house and more. I will return to my regular blog topics in my next post. In this post, I will be focusing on a few common mistakes made by newbie bloggers (myself included), as well as some things I’ve done to increase traffic on my site, which has allowed me to generate income after a few short months of blogging.
“Say you don’t need no diamond ring
And I’ll be satisfied
Tell me that you want those kind of things
That money just can’t buy
I don’t care too much for money
For money can’t buy me love.”-The Beatles
Do you have a full heart but an empty bank account? Despite what the media wants us to believe, true love doesn’t come from a store. Maybe it’s time to jump off of the consumer-driven love-train and endeavor to show your love to that special someone in other (free) ways. Here are ten ways you can show your love, without spending a dime.
Chances are, if you were alive in the 1980’s in America, you’ve heard the phrase, “Just say no” at least once. While the phrase was originally coined to keep kids from doing drugs, I am a firm believer in reviving the “Just say no” mantra for the sake of our sanity (busyness) as well as our bank accounts.
I used to be a crazy person. Crazy-busy, that is. Every single time anyone asked me to babysit, fill in at work, pitch in for a gift, attend a sales party, go out to eat, or help organize an event; I would automatically say “yes”. The thought never even occurred to me to say “no”. I thought I should help others. All of the time. Even if I really wanted to do something (or nothing) else.
While I am all about simple living, I still love eating out. However, the frugalista in me hates to pay the over-inflated restaurant bill. There’s just something about looking at that $8 plate of eggs that turns my stomach. Because I know I can make that same plate of eggs (even better) at home for pennies. For our family of 5, a typical meal in a restaurant complete with beverages, an appetizer, and entrees can easily top $100. And that’s without any dessert!
I know, I know, cooking at home will save me money. The problem is, I am not always at home. To add to the dilemma, sometimes I just want to eat out at a restaurant. To me, there’s nothing better than going on a date with my husband and not having to cook.
Did you know the majority of restaurants mark up the prices of their food by at least 3 times what they paid for it? When you go out to eat, you are not only paying for the food and beverages you order, you are also paying for the cooks, wait staff, ambiance, rent for the building, advertising costs and more.
What does all of this mean for the frugal consumer? Do we have to stop eating out altogether? Is there a way we can still enjoy a meal at a restaurant without breaking the bank? The answer is, “yes”. All it takes is a little bit of planning.
Do you frequently find yourself spending way too much at the grocery store? Would you like to save money on groceries without wasting your time shopping at multiple stores or clipping unnecessary coupons?
We’ve all heard about coupon “queens”, and most of us realize their methods won’t work for us. After all, who wants to spend hours clipping coupons and bouncing between 20 different stores just to “score” 10 boxes of fruit snacks? Not me.
You don’t have to give in to overspending at the grocery store. Saving money on groceries doesn’t have to be a full-time job. I’ll show you 10 simple ways to save money on groceries that are quick, easy and painless.
Did you know that if you are a family of (4) living in the United States making $47,200 per year (or less), your family is considered ‘low-income‘? Until recently, I didn’t. For the longest time, I thought our family was middle class. After the economic downturn of 2008, I realized we were far from it. It’s around this time that I ‘woke up’ in regards to our finances and realized our need for a budget. It quickly became clear to me that in order to stop living deep in debt and paycheck to paycheck, I not only needed to learn how to create a budget on a low income-I needed to stick to it.
I’m not going to lie. It took me years to figure out how to create a budget for our family’s low income, and (once I had it all on paper) even longer to learn to live within the boundaries of our budget. Hopefully, I can help you learn from my mistakes by showing you what I believe is the easiest way to create a budget on a low income. I say ‘easiest’ because the process of creating a budget is relatively easy (in theory). However, putting your budget into action and learning to live within your means is anything but easy. You will soon realize that living on a low income requires sacrifice and substitutions. It will mean less ‘wining and dining’ and more ‘whining and dining-in’.
There is one thing I just don’t do: New Year’s Resolutions. I haven’t for a long time. There’s just something about setting myself up for failure that doesn’t appeal to me. Instead of a long list of resolutions that will be forgotten by February 1st, I’ve decided to go with a one-word theme for 2017. My focus this coming year is to be more persistent.
Maybe you’ve heard the buzz lately about the simple living/minimalist movement. I’ll bet you’ve even heard of (if not already read) the best-selling book: The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo. Have you been wondering if this lifestyle is for you? Perhaps you’ve been longing to live a simple life, but you’re not sure if it’s worth it. All of the hours you’ll need to spend decluttering your stuff, saying “no” to extra activities and overtime, having to change your spending habits. And for what? Why not just keep going on the same path you’ve always known? After all, it’s easier. Should you even bother trying to simplify your life?