Frugal Living
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Frugal living is practiced by those whose aim is to have more money and cut expenses. It’s a way of living smarter and better money management. 

Have you unlocked the world of possibilities with frugal living?
Lorrie Johnson
Big lots is a favorite of mine for crafts especially jewelery crafts dollar tree is great too but the one in my area is one of the ones you just have to cross your fingers and hope they have something anything when you go because they get sold out of stuff quickly.
Vjval McM
Mostly use coupons shop for bargains and sales and really don't spend money on much of anything other than the absolute necessities
Pamela Estepp
I love to do crafts but I am on a small fixed income. Whenever I buy craft supplies, I hit Big Lots and Dollar Tree first. If I need to go to the craft stores, I always check online for coupons first.
Ruth Gyman
My daughter who is 14 loves doing crafts and she collects bottles and turns them in for the cash and then buys her crafts and she uses coupons too when she buys from a craft store. Her favorite thing right now is making duct tape flower pens.
Nadine Tidwell
Dollar tree is a great place for craft supplies! There is a website dedicated to dollar store crafts that i visit quite often!
Darlene Atkinson
Dollar tree is a great place to buy crafts. I just wish they sold fabric. When I need fabric I go to Joann's because they cut my fabric correctly. I went to Walmart once and bought fabric, but the lady cut it wrong and made me mad because I could not make what I wanted to make.
Amy Chan
The dollar store is my best friend now. The one around my apartment is really nice and has every item you can think of. They are high quality items too. I'm saving quite a bit of money by shopping there.
Nadine Tidwell
I have had a few frugal moments this week. I searched the markdown bin at work, and found several cleaning supplies i needed (name brands) down 50% (they were only marked down for damaged packaging)! I got a sponge mop, wet floor cloths and dry cloths for only $3!
Pamela Estepp
wow. Great deals. I need to go shopping with you. I could really use some good deals! Way to go!
Nadine Tidwell
For those with gamers to buy gifts for...Rite Aid has a promotion where if you buy a $25 game stop gift card you get $5 in up+ rewards too! I pre-bought two for my brothers Christmas gifts and I get to buy $10 worth of stuff for my house too!
Peg Asus
Thanks for this tip and heads up! I always love saving money! Rite Aid is just down the street from us too, so this is a perfect stop.
Nadine Tidwell
It was a great deal. I used the $10 in uprewards to purchase cleaning supplies that I needed this week. It's nice to not pay anything out of pocket for little things.
Katy Robertson
Whats your best saving tips? Do you have one savings account - or do you break it down? Right now we have retirement and savings but I kind of want a travelling account and when we have kids, college accounts
Peg Asus
I have several different savings accounts and while it feels like it grows super slowly that way vs putting it all in one account, I am able to visualize the goal for that account better knowing what's in it is what it is for. We have a family vacation fund, a savings just for property tax, each of my kids has a savings account, and an emergency fund. Oh and a Christmas fund/whatever fun money
Bridget Jones
We have a savings account that is not really designated for any real purpose and it rarely gets any money deposited into it. We have a vacation savings and all of our spare change that we save gets deposited into that account. At home, I keep three different ziplocks that I put money in weekly: college, Christmas and emergency
Darlene Atkinson
I have a regular savings account which is my honeymoon account (I am hoping to rebuild it soon because we had 2 emergencies with the car and had to dip into it). As soon as I get my financial aid money and my husband get's his in November we will be putting some money into savings as well as all our coins and have 25.00 transferred automatically from our checking into savings.
Nadine Tidwell
I have a checking and a savings. Starting this week I will be adding a college savings account for my son. I keep tabs on it via a paper budget track.
Katy Robertson
Thanks for the tips yall. As I said we have a checking, a savings and my husband has a 401k through work. We are saving for vacation but its literally just a jar of cash - so I may start a savings fund for travelling and deposit it.
Pat Veretto
I have two savings accounts, a checking account and a Paypal account which I use as a sort of savings. One of the savings accounts is for things like annual taxes and insurance premiums; one is for emergencies and long term savings goals. It helps me to separate them.
Peg Asus
Hooray! FINALLY my husband got on board about something. I asked him to consider cutting out soda for awhile and I will make him fresh iced tea instead. He didn't seem too on board about it when I said it in the first place, but when we went grocery shopping he said "you know I think I'll give up soda for awhile and just do iced tea" The way he said it made me laugh as though it were his idea, but I don't care, that saved us like $30-50!!
Heather M
Peg, that is really great that he has gotten on board.

I really am trying to get my boyfriend on board and keep him there, but he does tend to slip off.
Sarah Moore
thats great. that should save you a lot of money. the price of soda is just ridiculous. buying tea bags and sugar is so much cheaper
Making Cents
This is funny, because I just said compared to juice/milk etc. Soda is cheap. A 12 pack of soda costs the same as a gallon of milk! But yes, tea would be cheaper. And $50 a month on SODA?! wow!
Ray Wu
That is a lot of soda that he drinks if you guys spend $30-50 a month on it. I think it will be a good choice not only financially but also health wise.
Darlene Atkinson
That is great Peg that you got your husband to cut back on the amount of soda he drinks. My husband is going to shop around for a cheaper cell phone plan which is a start. I have noticed that milk and juice prices keep on going up, but I buy these because they are healthier than soda.
Peg Asus
He likes the 20 oz Dr. Pepper bottles so he can reclose them and take them with him. Compared to juice or milk, soda can be a cheaper option - with the drought I laugh and say maybe water is just as much since they're charging us more for water these days. But anyway, yeah they're 3 6 packs for $10 at Safeway on sale, sometimes we get lucky and find it for 4/$10 or 4/$11, but the thing is he goes through them FAST. So he may go through a pitcher of iced tea a day, but it's going to be way cheaper than that soda!
Tegan Coffman
My husband drinks nothing buy Mt. Dew. He will not drink anything else, says he doesn't like the taste of anything else. I think he would literally go through withdrawal if he had to give it up. I she that I could get him to stop and drink anything else. We probably spend about the same as well every month. can't usually find them cheaper than 4/$10 but most of the time it's 3/12 or 4/12
Peg Asus
Yeah, the 4/$10 is a gift. I think I had one time where we got a deal that Safeway or Target was running where if you bought 4 Dr. Pepper products you got $5 back (or off the bill) and it was on sale 4/$11, so we essentially got them 4/$6. And you know that didn't last long at all - the soda or the sale LOL
Kristin Cottrill
I have considered giving up soda but I kept a terrible headache so started drinking it again but I did switch to store brands and am saving enough money that way to allow me to keep my soda!
Tammy Burcham
How long did the headache last Kristin Cottril? I know mine have lasted about four days when I give up soda. Caffeine withdraws are slightly painful
Peg Asus
When I came down off of my sugar and caffeine high I cut one out a day and drank extra water - seemed to help flush it all out of my system. But that's okay to keep something in your life that you love! :)
Kristin Cottrill
I was told they would last for about a week but I kept a headache for 30 days straight - my aunt whos a nurse said it must of been unrelated but it went away shortly after I started drinking soda again.
Peg Asus
Oh no :( hmm, well if you're healthy in every other way, then maybe soda or the sugar is something you need! You could be an anomaly like me and coffee - coffee wakes everyone up, but puts me to sleep LOL
Kristin Cottrill
I have to much insulin in my blood which results in my blood sugar falling really low. Although I tend to drink diet soda because to much added sugars make it drop even faster (its weird I know) I think the artificial sweeteners somehow help.
Pegeen McConnell
We "saved" by buying my husband a soda stream for Christmas. It was an initial outlay, but I would have spent that money on something for a present, anyway. Now I look for good deals on juices or water enhancer mixes and he uses that for soda. Much healthier!
Nadine Tidwell
Lucky you! I have been begging my husband to give up soda! I have him not where he won't buy it unless it's $5 for a 24 pack
Tammy Burcham
Peg Asus If I drink more than two cups of coffee in the mornings I get really tired. Now having caffeine any time after 4 or 5 in the p.m. will keep me awake most of the night. I will toss and turn and just have a miserable time with getting a good nights sleep.
Pat Veretto
I weaned myself off of regular cola and now I can hardly stand it. I drink Zevia now, which is sweetened with stevia and has natural flavors. It's not cheap but two six packs last about a month, so that's a lot better than I was doing.
Katy Robertson
What points sights and survey sights do you use to earn money? I am using swagbucks, bing, inbox dollars, cashcrate, you gov and now chat about. Saving my money for a vacation with hubby
MacKenzie Drake
If you like to write, you might want to check out BubbleWs. The cashout minimum is $50 but you make money with every person that sees, comments or likes your post. You can make up to a dozen a day if you're inclined. I'm going to get more into BubbleWs and see how long it takes me to cash out.
Peg Asus
I am on bubblews too, just joined yesterday. I made my 10 posts and I have gotten almost 2 dolarrs (they start you off with one dollar). I am guessing as I get to know more people and I form connections that I will get more views and stuff - I can hope anyway LOL

Lets see what else - I use Swagbucks, Prize Rebel, Perk TV is my big huge gift card maker, blog job, tellwut, and now bubblews
Darlene Atkinson
I use swagbucks and InstaGC to get points which I cash in for amazon gift cards. I am on here as well, but I get Paypal. I also do clixsense to get money as well as Pinecone Research.
Nadine Tidwell
I use all the same ones you do, however I have never heard of cash crate. I will have to check on that.
Pat Veretto
I use Mypoints. If you download the toolbar and do 100 searches each month,I think for 70 points, they will gradually bump you up so you can make around 600 points a month with just searches. The emails and usual other things add up, too.
Connie Pauley
Some of these I have heard of and some of them I haven't. I guess I will have to check them out and see. I mainly do this one, swagbucks, Perk Tv and bing. It helps out a lot since and allows me to stay at home.
Tammy Burcham
My neighbors are really good about giving me food items that they won't use. Peanut butter, cheese, and farm fresh eggs. Just not having to purchase those three items saves me a lot of money. People give them some of these items and they don't use them so they give them to me. I in turn if I have to much share with others also. I call it hand me down food. LOL
Tanya Phillip
That is very kind of your neighbours, I personally give any items I can to the food bank even when I know I will need to buy some for home use, sharing is a gift we all need to give.
Tammy Burcham
Years ago they moved the food bank almost out of town. Very hard to get to at times. I don't have a car. It's also the place for people to pick up commodities. CSPC for the elderly and children that aren't on WIC. I just don't know why they would make it hard on people to get to.
Kristin Cottrill
My Grandma often sends us up stuff she gets that she wont use. For example they dont eat cereal bars, mac and cheese, certain cereals, yogurts, ect - and if they wind up with that stuff somehow they ask us if we want it. What we dont take they offer to my Uncle. We all share with one another whenever possible!
Nadine Tidwell
My family is constantly passing along food we don't use. I always give stuff to my mom because she has 4 kids, if my family of 3 won't be using them.
Faye R
I found a office to clean weekly and we have been doing this for 8 years My kids think we are supposed to eat at McDonalds every week when we go to clean I have learned to fix food and eat right before we have to go so I don't have to spend $35 each week on junk food Im not being mean but the reason Im still cleaning this office is to help pay off our bills not to make Ronald any more money
Tanya Phillip
Good for you, Faye, you are working hard and making the best decisions concerning fast food for your children, it is much cheaper to buy and prepare any kind of meal (including burgers, chips, drinks) at home than eat out.
Nadine Tidwell
Good for you! Not only is it cheaper but it is healthier! Your kids will appreciate it in the long run!
Karen Cockram
I like to have a weekly no spend day. Eat from the fridge, not use the car, and unless it is very cold weather not have the heating on or use any of the domestic applicances. I am not sure if it really saves much but it makes me think I am saving!
Sarah Moore
eating from home does help to save a lot of money. we try to only eat out maybe once a week, the rest of the time i keep stuff cooked like meatloaf and veggies or casseroles.
Tammy Burcham
I work in a fast food restaurant. Employees can eat for half price even when we aren't on the clock. This comes in handy when my granddaughter and I want pizza for lunch. I can feed both of us for less than five dollars. Part of the reason I keep the job.
Sarah Moore
thats good. i know when i worked at mcdonalds they would give us a discount plus we got two free dollar menu items to eat while we were a work. saved me from having to buy as much food since i was eating there five days a week.
Tammy Burcham
I think that's pretty good of them to give you free items. I think that people that work in restaurants should be able to eat free at least while they are on the clock.
Sarah Moore
i agree. most restaurants i have worked at have given us free food while we worked. they did that at some restaurants because they didnt give us a break but we could eat when we had time
Nadine Tidwell
That is a really good idea. I think that is something we are going to adapt a no spend day and that way we will get the most out of our time as a family.
Amalthea Darling
Frugal living is a good way to live one's life. Don't be stingy, but do be mindful of where your money and time are going.
Peg Asus
We went out to lunch using the gift certificates we got from PerkTV and just had to pay the tip which was so nice. Then my husband and older son went over to Gamestop to use some of their certificates and they only had to pay 64 cents out of pocket. While these are not things we needed to do, it's stuff we like to do and thanks to these earning sites, we didn't have to use much of our own budgeted money!
Darlene Atkinson
That is wonderful Peg. I am on PerkTV and for some reason while I watch them on my tablet I never get credit. It says that I only have 150 points and it has been saying that for the past two weeks. I wish it worked out better.
Peg Asus
oh no! That is incredibly disappointing i am so sorry. what kind of tablet are you using? Have you tried reinstalling it maybe? I know you should not have to do that but I have had to do it for one of my devices that was giving me a little trouble and not refreshing
Nadine Tidwell
That is very awesome! Guilt free spending, with your family! I love when we get to do those things and still remain within budget.
Jennifer Neilson
Grrr, I have several expenses coming up that I just don't want to spend. I had to get some clothes altered to go to a wedding this weekend (which I didn't really want to go to), so I'll have to pick those up tomorrow. I hope it's not too much. I wish I'd thought to ask about the costs before hand so I knew what to expect. And now my dog needs to go to the vet because he has mites and of course according to them he needs other things too.
Pat Veretto
I hate it when things like that come along. They can upset the best plans made! I need to learn to allow for unexpected things in my budgeting.
Peg Asus
There is nothing worse than spending money on something for somewhere or some event you didn't want to go in the first place. :( I hope your dog is okay and that whatever treatment he needs isn't too costly
Darlene Atkinson
I know the feeling about saving money for something important then an emergency comes up and you have to use the money on that instead. Last week our car decided that it needed new brakes and it cost us 335.00. This money had to come out of our savings account and wiped out most of savings account. I hope your dog gets better soon.
MacKenzie Drake
Well, tomorrow starts the monthly frugal challenge for me. My roommate and I have been going through the local ads and figuring out what we'll get this weekend and through the month. 07/31/14
Jennifer Neilson
Just curious what your plans for your frugal month entail MacKenzie? What kind of things are you and your roommate going to do to save money?
MacKenzie Drake
Well, we start with checking the ads to see if we can beat the prices at the discount store we usually go to on payday. Sometimes this pays off very well by itself, so long as we keep to the loss-leader items and not buy much at regular prices.

Then, before we leave to go shopping, we have breakfast, preferably a substantial one that will keep us from shopping on an empty stomach. We've both found It's much eaisier to pass on the emotional impulse stuff if we aren't physically hungry. A homemade breakfast burrito usually does the trick and can keep us going 'til late afternoon.

Beyond that, our biggest frugal filter is to ask, 'Is it necessary?' I make a point of asking myself that before I buy the things I crave most -- crafting tools and supplies, and sweets. Both can add up fast, and a lot of times I have what I need at home or can find a good substitute.
MacKenzie Drake
08/12/14 Well, almost two weeks into the month, I'm pretty well satisfied. I've cut back on some of my stuff, such as the beads on Ebay, but we had some meals out last week, so it's still just balancing out. I'm a bit ahead but not so far as I'd like. Still, we have plenty of food on hand for ourselves and the family, so I can't complain too much.
Peg Asus
MacKenzie that is awesome. It's always good to feel a balance that's what we all strive for I think :) because of this site and this thread in particular I have really buckled down and been not so spendy
Ocean Tiara
I always think I live frugally but I must not be frugal enough as I can't seem to make it. Every week there is something that is damaged and has to be replaced in this place I live.
MacKenzie Drake
The repairs and replacements are a bear, but they don't reflect on how frugal you are. Sometimes you need things that have to be maintained and can end up needing to be repaired, or the kids or cat gets sick, etc. It can be a real scramble to keep all the loose ends even close together.
Ocean Tiara
Hi MacKenzie. You are right, life is full of repairs lol. I also had to buy a dehumidifier for this moldy place I rent. It is never ending.
MacKenzie Drake
*Hugs* I'm sorry you had to do that. I imagine you're breathing better as a result. I don't do well in humid conditions, so the heat and humidity here in Sacramento are no fun at all. I do hope you'll see the end of the stuff to be fixed soon!
Jennifer Neilson
I had to buy a dehumidifier recently too Ocean. I was really disapointed to find out how expensive they are, but I couldn't stand the smell in our lower level.
Tammy Burcham
I know how you feel. The kids had done so much laundry yesterday, that it looks like that I will be calling a plumber this week some time. The system in this house is so old and can't handle a lot of water in a short period of time. This is a bad day for it to happen. my granddaughter was sick all night and I need to wash some towels and bedding.
Pamela Estepp
I was just reading all the posts on phones. I get the free basic cell phone offered by Assurance Wireless for low income people or I wouldn't have a cell phone at all. At home I use MagicJack and love it--- $40 for unlimited local and long distance. What's not to love!
Nadine Tidwell
How does magicjack work? I've heard a lot of people love it and we're interested because the apartment we're looking at is in a deadzone as far as cell phone service goes.
C W
I don't like Magic Jack. For a long time at work our calls wouldn't go through to the people that used Magic Jack. I use a free Google Voice phone number plus a one time purchase of a router that hooks up our house phones...so I have a free landline phone.
Nadine Tidwell
C W thank for sharing! I didn't know there was an option through google! I like having alternative options, thank you for passing on your information!
C W
No problem! What's neat about the Google voice number is you can text with it, and you can even forward calls to your cell phone without giving your cell phone number away.
Pamela Estepp
Nadine, you just plug it into your computer modem and then plug the phone into that. As long as you have an internet connection you can use it. People dialing in or out have to dial the area code too but after you get used to doing that, it's no big deal.
Danielle Simms
We actually went the other way and have no cell phone and kept our land line. As both of us are out of work at the moment there is no need to pay the expense of a cell.
Darlene Atkinson
I had wanted to do that, but with my husband's health we had to get a cell phone. He wanted a smart phone and we ended up getting him a prepaid one for 60.00 a month. It is expensive, but I want to keep him happy.
Danielle Simms
Which makes more sense for you to do it that way. We are more or less stuck at home, so if anyone needs to get a hold of us they always can. Very rare that we miss a call, so I have come to the decision that if you can not leave me a message on my home phone then I probably don't want to talk to that person anyways :)
Nadine Tidwell
Darlene, Walmart offers a smartphone with unlimited everything for only $45 a month. We absolutely love our phones and the service is great where we live!
Nancy A
What carrier does Wal-Mart use? How is the reception on that and where is the coverage? that has alot to do with it.
Sarah Moore
i have walmart family mobile. they have a lot more signal than most of the other networks i have been on, me and my hubby are on the plan together. we pay only 83 dollars for two unlimited plans.
Tammy Burcham
I usually use my land line. I don't have a cell phone. I use my magic jack when I remember it. I paid a hundred dollars for five years can call any where in the states for that. My kids where telling me that majic jack works with their cells. I am not sure how.
Sarah Moore
i have seen that advertised on tv a few times but never really looked into it. i mainly keep my landline on for my mom. she has a cell phone but it is more for emergencies than anything else
Tammy Burcham
I should say I have the majic jack plus. With that one you can use it without it being plugged into your computer. So it does work more like a land line but you still need the internet connection. Which is how my land line works anyway. With my land line the long distance is free but the local calls aren't. Don't understand that.
Nadine Tidwell
Walmart has several plans. One is through straighttalk the other is through tmobile. I have fantastic coverage almost anywhere and my 3g is awesome. I currently have straight talk because i don't need a new phone, which i'd need to purchase through the family plan. BUT, we are planning on getting it.
Danielle Simms
I am on a monthly plan here with our cable company. (Canadian) I get our cable internet (unlimited) Phone ( free long distance in Canada and the US any time of day) as well as our basic cable for $100 so it's not to bad.
Faye R
We have our cell phones with Verizon because they are the only ones that have enough power to pick up in the dead area that surrounds our area but its expensive a d I keep praying I can find something different and I don't even have a smart phone My teenaged daughter has the best phone but she will graduate next year and I expect her to get a job and help some with expenses
Darlene Atkinson
Thank you Nadine. I will have to look into this and see how we can save money. I wonder of we can transfer the phone number from our old phone to a new phone.
Pegeen McConnell
I know that a lot of people have done away with their land line phones to save money and just have a cell line. We are thinking of doing that, too.
Peg Asus
At first it was weird to not have a landline, but having just the cell phone has worked well for us for years. However my kids have no idea what a land line really IS until they go to my mom's lol Oh come to think of it I think she just did away with her landline
Faye R
We did away with ours too but kept our Internet service after a few months they sent us a letter saying that it was illegal for them to give us Internet service without phone service so they were going to give us a free landline so we had no choice They sent me a new number but I keep it unplugged most of the time because I hate a ringing phone
Kenneth Cody
We have magic jack. We have it so the kids can make an emergency phone call if need be. I remember when I was young and I was taught how to call in the event of an emergency and had a phone number list. My children have the same.
Sylvia Frazier
has anyone else heard of what faye is saying? it this is in any way illegal i guess you would have to color me a criminal ! she clearly states that she got the free ohone,
Sylvia Frazier
i, too, detest a ringing phone and have magic jack. i keep the cell phone off and if the magic phones rings - it most certainly is someone who wishes to speak to ... sylvia! i have seen some confusion surrounding the magic jack phone and that is the only thing that i can associate with everyone NOT having one.
Darlene Atkinson
I have Magic Jack and love it. It is great because I can call people long distance without having to pay any extra fees. I pay $29.00 a year and it is a lot cheaper.
Peg Asus
Whoa, it was illegal to have internet without a landline, Faye? Wow, is that like a law law or was it this company's policy?
Sylvia Frazier
Another great thing I enjoy about Magic Jack and perhaps the best is the fact that your number is not spread around the world for all to see. Paying the provider to get an unlisted number in order to reduce the number of sales calls (for instance) is something of the past !!
Faye R
Peg I don't know but I will find out Our Internet and phone are with a small independent company so it could be there rule but I think they have some board or something that is over them I will find out tho my step son went with Hughes Net and it runs very slow
Peg Asus
Thanks, Faye. I'll check online too and see if I see anything about it being a law that I need to know about. It's been YEARS since we had a phone line though!
Nadine Tidwell
We haven't had a land line ever, haha. We keep our cellphones even though i was a stay at home mom because when my husband was on deployment training, my husband couldn't talk often, but he could text.
Faye R
If I remember correctly the letter stated that the FCC whatever that is had ruled that they could not provide Internet service to customers who did not have phone service with them So I guess this is just with this company
JoAnn S.
Cell phone service is not reliable here. We live in a dead zone. I need the land line in case of emergency. I am not sure if I can get Internet without the land line. Anybody know anything about that? 7/28/14 11:12 am
C W
I go through Comcast internet only. I haven't heard of it being illegal to have internet only. Lots of the big name places like Century Link offer internet only plans.
MacKenzie Drake
Internet only is not illegal. The service providers would like you to use more and might make it harder for you to sign up for just internet, but it's entirely legal.
Dexter Iwamine
Recently I've found a couple apps that reward you for doing normal grocery shopping and buying some things you usually would already! Checkout 51 gives you money back, while you earn points towards cash payouts with Receipt Hog and ReceiptPal. I'm so fond of them already, we've saved over fifteen dollars this week alone.
Pegeen McConnell
Yeah, I have been using Check Out 51 for a few months now. Unfortunately I rarely get anything that's on there other than the 25 cent healthy items and they add up really slowly.
Dexter Iwamine
It's really a nice "excuse" for me to buy things that are a little out of my way, honestly. I adore steak sauce, but we almost never purchase any - but this week, I got $1 back for it! Not only do I get to enjoy the sauce, I also saved a little money for doing so. If you combine the sales with coupons, sometimes it will even pay for itself.
Peg Asus
Someone here just turned me on to Receipt Hog and it was kind of fun and exciting realizing that I could do this and make money on stuff I already bought. The thing is I wish I knew about it sooner!
Nadine Tidwell
I love check out 51. I've heard great things about reciept hog too. I just wish I had more room on my phones for all these apps!
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