When I made the decision to come home and be a full-time mom, I had to be frugal in order to make ends meet. But I do have to say there was a certain lightness and freedom that came with being my own boss. I could do what I want, when I wanted to and how I wanted to do it. As I learned to be frugal, and our expenses became less, that brought a different type of liberty. The freedom of getting out of debt, which we were able to do for quite a while.
Right now, we do carry some debt. Some of it is because we are still paying off one of our cars. Some of it is because we are paying on a loan we had to take out because of Stephen's school bill last year. Some of it was because of unexpected expenses that we had to use the credit card for. So we are once again working to get out of debt.
When you can cut your costs, stop purchasing and work at being frugal, it does bring freedom. I've been on both sides of the coin and I have to say the debt-free side is so much nicer. So I am doing my best to help us get where we need to be. I love the above quote because when you are frugal and can get that debt paid off the freedom that comes is indescribable!
Some ways I've saved this week:
$ I continue to make almost everything from scratch. It certainly is cheaper and you know exactly what ingredients you are using. This morning I got up and started the dough for challah bread.
$ I continue to barter with my hairdresser. I'm giving her teens a couple of cooking lessons, plus I do any sewing she needs.
$ I've been hanging clothes out on the line instead of using the dryer. It saves the church from that higher electric bill each month.
$ I went to the farmer's market on Saturday and for $52 got the following. Prices have definitely gone up from last year but that is because the crops haven't been as good from all the rain we have had this summer.
$ While we rarely eat jelly or jam, I do continue to make it because they make wonderful gifts.
$ Emily passed her driver's test yesterday and now has a license. Dan called the insurance company and for whatever reason (probably because she is a girl and won't have the car at college), our insurance premium is staying the same.
$ Dan has been paying extra each month on the car loan so that it will get paid off sooner. We should be done with it in December! Nathan makes his own car payment and Dan has him do the same on his loan.
$ I really, really haven't felt like cooking much this week BUT have pushed myself to do it because it's such a waste of money to eat out when I can make a meal that is just as good for a fraction of the cost and have leftovers.
Some of the meals we've had this week:
Roast pork with apple jelly glaze, roasted potatoes and steamed green beans
Hamburgers on the grill with corn on the cobb and German potato salad
Macaroni & cheese with a tossed salad
Chicken with stuffing, corn salad (from the leftover corn on the cobb)
Stir fry chicken with vegetables (onion, garlic, celery, fennel, carrots, eggplant and kale) over rice.
Lunches are generally leftovers. So as you can see, we've had healthy meals for less. Tonight will be a challenge because the fridge is bare, but since I'm shopping tomorrow I will come up with something.
$ Made my own laundry detergent.
So that's my frugal offering for the week. How have you been doing?