Thursday, January 24, 2013
15 Painless Ways To Save In 15 Days.
I don't know about anyone else, but January is always budget time in our house. Every January we plot out what we want to accomplish for the year and adjust our monthly budgets to make those goals work. But, since I am not a coupon clipper, nor do I recycle my ziploc bags or separate my two-ply toilet paper, nor am I willing to be miserly or miserable in the name of saving money, over the years I have had to figure out alternative ways to save to accomodate our goals. So without further adieu, I give you:
15 Painless Ways To Save In 15 Days.
1. Water down things like your fabric softener, liquid laundry soap and liquid cleaning products a bit. Totally stretches them out, saving you a bit of money in the long run.
2. Save all your change in a piggy bank then cash it in at the end of the month. I have had as little as $20.00 some months and as much as $50.00 other months. Some months I save it, other months I use it for a family outing or even clothing or a bill; it just depends on the month and my mood.
3. When you do want to go out to eat, once in a while go to places like Pizza Hut and do their $10.00 Family Feast or Taco Johns for their Six Pack and a Pound for $8.99. You'll still get the fun of eating out but this time it's without the $50.00 price tag.
4. When you want something new to wear instead of hitting the mall, spend half an hour on Pinterest and see what new outfits you can create with what you already own. Thirty minutes of my time versus two hours and $50 of my time and money?? Sold-- to the funnest outfit on Pinterest!
5. Go out for ice cream or some other treat instead of a meal. My kids will happily eat cereal or grilled cheese sandwiches if they know we'll be going to Dairy Queen for dessert.
6. Stay away from the clearance racks at Target for a couple of weeks. It'll be tough some days, no doubt, but I'm willing to bet you'll see a difference in your checking account by the end of the two weeks or the end of the month.
7. Make use of those Redbox codes. We haven't paid for a Redbox movie in three months thanks to all our codes. Between getting codes texted to us twice a month, the two codes that come on my Orville Redenbacher popcorn box, and the codes that my favorite grocery store offers every so often we've been well stocked in movies and it hasn't cost us a single dime.
8. Buy a bag of Starbucks coffee and brew your coffee at home. $7.99 every seven days is a heck of a lot better than $3.50-$4.50 every single day. If you want to trick yourself into thinking you really have a fancy Starbucks coffee, then drink your home brewed coffee out of your reusable Starbucks cup!
9. Stretch the length of time between shopping trips-- even if it's just by one or two days you'll more than likely see a difference in your grocery budget by the end of the month.
10. At places like Dairy Queen or Culvers have everyone order off the kids' menu-- the idea being to save the free ice cream coupon for a free outing at a later date. Plus you'll be saving yourself calories at the same time because the portion sizes are smaller and let's face it, who couldn't stand to save a few cals and a few grams of fat?!?
11. Serve breakfast for dinner one night a week and sandwiches another. A package of sliced ham or turkey and/or a dozen eggs is less expensive than a pound of hamburger-- plus it just makes for a nice break from heavy meals all the time. And if you do sandwhiches first, you can chop up the leftover lunchmeat to add to your eggs the next night and really maximize that food purchase and that savings.
12. Which leads me to: double duty your meals or your ingredients. See #11 again, or buy things like one bag of potatoes to use for potato soup one night, crock pot chicken another night, and sliced potatoes and kielbasa a third night. Another idea would be to make a double batch of chili, spaghetti or soup and freeze half.
13. Every time you chose to eat at home when you wanted to eat out or every time you made coffee at home instead of going to Starbucks, actually save the money. Put it away in an envelope and don't touch it!
14. Every time you save money with coupons for eyebrow waxes, haircuts, or those awesome Extra 20% off coupons from Kohl's, actually save the money. Just like with #13, put it away in an envelope or piggy bank. I think you'd be surprised how fast it can add up!
15. One week a month "live off the land." Use up what you have. Use those last bits of soap. Use up the food you have in your freezer and pantry. Use up the last of those just about empty cleaners. This is also a great week to use up those extra meals you froze in #12!
So there you go, just pick one a day to try and after 15 days you could have a tidy little savings!
The Vanilla Tulip
TaterTots and Jello