Saturday, February 6, 2010

Becoming Thrifty

Since I’ve become a SAHM, and since we’ve gone from two really good incomes to one pretty good income, I’ve done a lot of things to try and save our family money.  It’s been a ‘baby-steps’ process for me, but it’s coming along, if I do say so myself.  I was inspired by this post by a woman who’s blog I’ve read for a year or so now.  She listed how her grocery list has become shorter (and therefore cheaper) because of all the food she’s making from scratch now.   Here are just a few things that I do to save us money.

  • We use cloth diapers.  I LOVE them, and I could go on and on about how adorable, easy, and practical they are,  but I’ll spare you my spiel.  After just a year, we’ve already saved money on diapers. 

  • I am starting to make my own bread now.  I have gone through spurts of making bread, but they never seem to last.  I usually get discouraged, because we eat the bread so quickly, that I end up making bread every other day. It seems the time I save from having to make it every other day is worth the cost of the healthy bread from the store.  But really it isn’t.  Bread without high fructose corn syrup is expensive!  Organic anything is expensive!  So, if I make it myself, we get the healthy bread for a fraction of the cost.  Hopefully I’ll stick with it this time.

  • I’ve finally figured out how to make yummy garlic bread on my own.  It may be a no-brainer, but it took me a bit of experimenting to figure it out.  I add a couple cloves of minced garlic and some Italian seasoning to melted butter, brush it on my bread, then broil it until toasted.  SO SIMPLE!  But I couldn’t get it figured out for a long time.  Garlic powder just doesn’t work the same.  I imagine it would be even better if I roasted my garlic, but who has the time for that?

  • My newest adventure is making my own pasta.  I’m not there yet.  I have only tried it once, and it needs some work.  But I can tell that this could become a good thing for us.  It’s fun to make it, super fast and easy, and I’m hoping worth the effort.  We’ll see.  I may have to get back to you on this one.

  • Rick has always made his own cocoa mix.  He uses cocoa powder and sugar.  Imagine that.  It really is simple, and he makes it by the glass, so I don’t have to worry about storing it.  It’s a small thing, but in the winter time, it saves us a bit of change.

  • I make my own pancake mix.  I’ve found a yummy Buttermilk Pancake recipe mix that I love.  I suppose it’s not all that healthy, but it’s homemade, so it saves us money.  I should make a whole wheat recipe, but that’s going to take a little time.  Saving money is my first priority, then eating healthy is the second. (at least when it comes to yummy pancakes!)

  • One big thing I try to do is not eat out at all.  Dinners are easy enough for me.  I meal plan and have a good dinner every night.  But lunches are another thing.  Jack and I go out almost every day, and it’s such a temptation for me to stop at a drive thru and get something quick to eat.  I take it one month at a time.  I don’t stop for anything for a month, reward myself with a fast food lunch, then do it again for another month.  I know, it’s a little corny, but it works for me.
This list seems simple enough, but I think it’s helping us in the long run.  Rick said we came in under budget for the month of January!  Now, I could go through another list, just as long of how I’m NOT saving us money –like every time I return something to Walmart I spend even more money on other things.  But let’s not focus on the negative, and stay proud of the positive. We may switch to cloth napkins someday and even stop (or cut WAY back on) using paper towels.  That’d save us money, right?
What else can I do to save us money?  Any suggestions?
If you read this entire post, you should be rewarded…so here are two pictures from Jack playing (really he just stood there) in the snow yesterday.  DSC01725(PS1)


  1. I'm always looking for ways to cut back...these are some great tips!

  2. I got great deals on toys in December on Amazon. I will have to buy L some clothes for her birthday but that's it.
    I bought a present for a friend's son over Christmas for $5.99, I saw it was $30 in the store this week.

    But one of my best money saving tip is to stop going. I used to go to Target when I was bored. You can spend a lot of money that way. Now, I only go for a purpose.

    Of course, my biggest money saving tip wouldn't work for you as you SAHM. We work opposite shifts so we don't pay a dime for daycare. With 4 kids that would need varying degrees of daycare, it would be double our rent.

    Jack is a cutie

  3. Those are great tips! I've been baking my own bread, for the most part, for a while too.

    This is also a great post idea! I'm going to do one of these soon. :)

    I can save $10-12 dollars if I match my coupons and ads up.

    try or other online coupon places or get the Sunday paper. Your savings will pay for the paper.

  5. Amanda, I see you've recently had a stroke of "luck" (not that I believe in luck) recently with winning blog giveaways. Well, guess what? You just won my detergent giveaway, too!! Crazy, huh? So...I need you to email me with your full name, mailing address, etc.

    davidsonden at gmail dot com


  6. Great for you. Keep with making your own pasta. It is very easy and fun. A little hard with little ones. My hubby only likes one dish with homemade noodles. He is quite a picky eater.
    Thanks for linking up with Try and Tell

  7. We started to use cloth diapers after a year and a half of disposables for my first daughter. We always used cloth wipes (except for the really messy diapers), and that saved us a ton of money too!

  8. great ways to save money each we have learned over the many years

  9. Thats really cool about all the homemade things you make! I love going out to eat though :(. We usually don't go during the week, but on the weekend when my husband is off of work, we love going to our fav mexican and bbq restaurants, oh and applebees too lol.

  10. Great ideas. I might have to try the cloth diaper thing when we have a second child.

  11. We're starting to look into cloth diapers with baby #2 on the way.

    As for the bread, a great way to make it healthier without altering taste too much is to add a little flax seed meal. DH is super picky but doesn't mind this addition at all!


Your comments mean the world to me. Thanks for taking the time to stop by!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...