Moving & Saving: Part 2 – In the 70’s there was a gas shortage in the U.S. “The line is around the corner.” Mom said to Dad as we three sisters sat quiet, unbelted in the back seat of forest green Dodge Dart. (Back then, if you needed belted, Dad would do it. HA!)
Though the folks both worked, we also stood in line for butter and cheese in the early 80’s. Mom was creative in many ways, but not so in the kitchen. The staples were boiled potatoes, gravy made from the grease of the meat she fried well every time, and fresh or canned veggies. (depending on the season) As far as spices, we were true Hoosiers; salt, pepper and ketchup. 😉 We camped and fished. Wandered the woods. Dad taught us to till the ground and care for plants. Taught me to drive at 14… an old blue Chevy half ton, with a load of fresh cut firewood in the bed.
—Some time later, my husband and I taught our daughter to appreciate country life, too. But we’ve missed it for over a decade. Now, after clawing through 5 rough years, we have a sense of direction and a time frame.
-> Finally, a homestead!! 10 months to a year away hopefully. (and 10ish years until retirement.) As the budget gets tighter, I’m researching economical Prefab home kits under $35K here.
Money Saving Totals: These are some examples of consistently cutting back, in the past 80 days–
- $24/mo. Husband found a shorter route to work.
- $12/mo. I’m making all DIY household cleaners.
- $78/mo. Groceries/Eating out: Cut our trips in half. Found closer places. Continue to use coupons & sales ads. Used GoodRx app at Kroger.
- $20/mo. Stock Up: on frozen veggies- which we seem to eat more and waste less than fresh or canned.
- $40/mo. Fewer Gifts- giving & receiving: With extended family, we are pitching in to give gifts that are longer-lasting, durable and functional. We’ve asked for restaurant gift cards in return. (b/c we don’t need more ‘stuff’)
- $40/mo. General Purchases: Secondhand store first. (clothes, office chair) Spending freeze on Amazon & home improvement stores.
- $12/mo. Utility bills: We light & heat the room, not the house. Smaller lamps. Shorter showers. Unplugged cords not in use. Lightweight laundry dries flat or in front of the heater.
- TOTAL $226.00/mo. additional savings so far this year. Not too shabby!
- Mindset & Replacing Old Habits: Enjoying free or cheap activities together- Crafts, games, books and movies we already bought. Take walks around the neighborhood. We hold planks together on the living room floor. We’re also trying new cooking styles & spices. He helps wash dishes and cooks on Sundays.
- Things we decided NOT to do… to save money: Didn’t pick up gym memberships in January. Didn’t buy state park passes. No bikes, appliances or fancy boots. Decided not to get cable TV or buy a new recliner. No vehicle loans, but maintained the 2 that we own.
It’s encouraging to see that incremental numbers DO add up over time. Saving 3 bucks a week doesn’t seem like much by itself. But get a little momentum going and it becomes $2500+ a year toward debt, retirement, or a replacement transmission sometime down the road. (HA!) –Have patience and be thrifty, Friends and Confidantes -Gma Auburn