Thursday, October 10, 2019

Need A Jump Start?

Do you need to jump start your frugal ways?  Do you need to tighten the budget?  Do you need to get back to the frugal life?
Have new bills accumulated?  Are old bills getting behind?  Just wanting to save more?

I think any of these things can happen to anyone.
Many people want to get back to being their BEST frugal self.  2020 is just a couple months away and can be a new start with a new year.  Get yourself back on track slowly in the next couple months.  Make lists of what to cancel or cut back on.  Make lists of ways to improve your financial situation.  Start cutting back now.  Get yourself to make small cut backs and then really work hard at it in the new year.

  • Stay home more.  Plan your trips to use the least amount of gas.  No eating out - no more stopping for coffees (take your own).  The more your stay home the less gas you use, the less upkeep on vehicle.  CHECK with your INSURANCE companies if you have made a major life change.  If you retired, work from home, work part time, work within so many miles of the house, etc...…..  you may get your rates lowered!!!!!!  I did - when G and I both retired - our rates dropped drastically.  ALSO if you hit some of those MAGIC AGES your rates will decline as well.  Call and check!
  • Watch for food and grocery deals.  Buy the markdowns, clearance and stock up on the seasonal sales.  Whatever you save this week on groceries is $$$ you can use for something else or save.  It is basically money in the bank.  Cook from scratch!!!!!    Shop from home first - use what you have and get creative.  Shop sales.  TAKE anything that you are offered.  Check with Marketplace and Freecycle - you can often find farmers gifting/or cheaply selling food - you can find jars for canning.  Check with local farms to see if they allow gleaning at the end of the season.  Many do - you can get tomatoes, pumpkins, potatoes, etc. for pennies or nothing just for asking.  KEEP YOU PANTRY STOCKED FOR ANY EMERGENCY!
  • Simplify your meals and snacks.  Makes soups, casseroles - use less meat.  Take snacks of veggies, fruits, nuts, peanut butter - homemade treats.  Use more pasta, rice and beans in your diet (they are great for stretching the budget).  Consider meat as an ingredient NOT a main event.
You can easily halve or quarter this recipe for biscuits.  Biscuits are easy and cheap.  Use biscuits, bread or cornbread to extend any meal.  All are filling and help the budget.
  • Be aware of utilities.  Turn off lights when not in rooms.  Use candles more.  Turn heat down or AC up - use fresh air.  Let sun in on cold days, pull curtains at night to keep warmth in.  Be mindful of water waste.  Unplug small appliances not in use.  Air dry clothes if possible - it not, use your drier sparingly and hang things to partially dry.
  • IF someone asks what you want for a gift - BE PRACTICAL.  Ask for grocery GC's, food, or any supplies you may need. 
  • Also be practical with what YOU give.  Give homemade goodies, lovely crafted items, re-gift any gift cards you may have that you won't use, check out thrift stores for new items, etc..
JUST GET CREATIVE with everything.  Remember the rule of  one half - use half of everything and/or water down items.  Most things you will never notice a difference.
ASK for discounts and better deals - they may say YES!
BUDGET (I hate that word) - is basically spending less than you make.  Pretty simple concept.  Stick to it.
SAVE what you can.

Pick and chose whatever works best for you and your family.  Not everything works for everyone!  Odds are you WILL fail along the way.  That is normal - it happens to everyone. Just get back up and start again.  Stumbling along the way is normal.  Don't beat yourself up - just don't quit!!!!!  Keep on trying.

So get busy now and do a little jump start to get yourself in the frame of mind that 2020 will be a good financial year for your family.   Make a plan and stick to it!
Start making and implementing small changes - pennies make dollars.

If you want to want for nothing - just want less!  Keep it simple and enjoy the little things.


  1. Since I retired in January I've certainly taken much of this advice to heart. (I did spoil myself with three cruises first!)

    I'm finding that the more conscious I am of my choices the easier it is becoming to be more frugal. AND I like it!

    1. Congrats on 3 cruises!!!!
      You are so right - it just becomes habit, and you don't even think about it. That is kind of nice.

  2. Good ideas! I love the thought of asking for grocery gift cards. I hope that someone will ask! Have a great day Cheryl!

    1. I hope someone asks you as well. Free food is always nice.
      Have a good one!

  3. I am always surprised by how much people like home made food gifts. Last week I visited my sister and her husband who are much older than me and not too well. I always take them a homemade cake and they love it. Some friends got a gift of homemade marmalade when I went to tea and their pleasure inspired me to use my home grown frozen blackcurrants to make jam mainly for gifts. Being frugal brings a lot of pleasures.

    1. A homemade gift says "you are special" to me. It is such a nice touch.
      I love giving things that people may not otherwise get or try!
      Being frugal can bring happiness indeed!

  4. Great post Cheryl, so thought provoking and good to read, to reaffirm our frugal ways.
    Thank you!
    Pam in TX.x

    1. Thanks Pam. I think we all need a jump start once in a while. We tend to get slack every now and then.
      Appreciate it!

  5. I made your potato soup the other day and it was scrumptious and so easy! Thanks so much....

    1. YAY! It is yummy isn't it? I love easy meals. I am making a pot tomorrow.
      Glad you enjoyed it!!!!!!

  6. Great ideas. It is never to late to start being frugal. And if you fall off the horse you can always get back on.

  7. My errands are all planned to happen one day of the week (I would like to make that every second week this winter and am working on it). I am looking into purchasing a toaster oven to save on use of the big oven. I hope to use my Instant Pot and Slow Cooker more this winter to save on electrical costs.

    God bless.

    1. I am a planner of my errands and routes as well. Love my slow cooker.
      You have good plans. It all helps for sure.

  8. This was a very motivating post! We *try* to live very simply, but sometimes our one income isn't quite enough so I'm always looking for ways to make my husband's hard-earned paychecks stretch further!