Monday, June 29, 2009

Miss Thrifty

I've had to come up with some ways to live on less since my new job will pay less than my last one and I still have yet to get an unemployment check from the State (they better give me my money or I'll have to cut them!). I had to pull $500 out of savings (not to mention over $1000 has already been automatically taken out of my savings account for my new car payments) just to help cover my mortgage this month. After that payment I will be down to about $100 until I get a check from somewhere, so this has gotten serious! Downgrading sucks. It does, but you do what you gotta do right?

1. I am shopping at Food Lion and Wal-Mart. Two places I detest because of their small confusing ailes and crowds of people. I much more enjoy Lowes Foods and Target, they are more expensive on most items. So suck it up and go during on off hour like 11 pm on a Sat. or during the day during the week if possible. I may even hit up the dollar store for dish soap and stuff.

2. I don't buy books. I have been using for a while and love it, but I would sometimes supplement it with a trip to Barnes and Noble every once in a while. But no more. I have a huge to-be-read pile of books so I am just going to add those "must-get-my-hands-on-now books" to my wish list on Paperbackswap and plow through what I've got on hand while I wait.

3. My new rule of no new clothes for me until I get to the size I want saves a lot, but new shoes are a problem. So I now shop for shoes at Marshall's and TJ Maxx. It will be hit or miss with them, but it's going to be cheaper when you do find something. And if I ever get another designer purse it will probably have to come from there too.

4. Look at those sales flyers you get in the mail! I was so in need of new kitchen items for cooking (all that eating out has to go) and I came across a Macy's 2-day flyer. They had a stainless steel cookware set (org.99.99) on sale for $29.99 if you got it before 1 pm and a Martha Stewart knife set (org.79.99) on sale for $37.99. I had a $50 giftcard I had been saving for my next designer purse so I used that and got all these great cooking tools for only $11 out of my pocket.

Plus I get lots of coupons. I go through those coupon mailers and when I do eat out it is probably at somewhere I have a coupon to. I used one this weekend at Baskin Robins to get a free kids cone and she gave me a whole stack of more so I have no need to buy sweet treats for a while now.

5. Eat in more (See #4 for my motivation purchase for this one)

6. Use plastic bags you get from stores (when you forget to take in your canvas ones) to pick up your dog's poop instead of buying them (or just take a whole bunch from your neighborhood dispenser if the have one)

7. DVR movies to watch at home instead of renting or use Redbox. Resist the urge to go to the movie. (Haven't done well with this one cause I went to see The Hangover and My Sister's Keeper in the past 2 weeks- but seriously it wasn't worth it...well The Hangover might have been!)

8. Find friends who have beach houses and pray that they will invite you. Also urge your mom not to rent out the timeshare and let you have it this year to get in some mini vacations. It's not the same as the legendary Cruise 2K8, but it will have to do.

9. Remember how I said I was a travel sized toiletries addict? Well I have a basket overflowing with them in my spare bedroom. I am going to use those up before I buy the real sizes again and ask any of my traveling friends to grab their hotel ones for me!

10. Ask for extras (or grab extras) when you eat out. I have tons of ketchup and mustard packets and I am going to start asking for extra salad dressing packets too. I may even try to get extra Splenda and Fat Free Mayo packets.

11. Attempt to do your own mani/pedis. It's nothing like the real thing when I do it, but I have resisted all summer and am saving my one splurge on that for right before a wedding I have to go to in July.

12. Stop going out. Stay in and make your own fun. Play a board or card game. Watch a movie. Play with the dog. And stop drinking so much. With the right people, these things can be fun just drinking water and that is free.

I may not officially be Miss Thrifty yet, but I am slowly finding my way!


Ms. Rowse said...

Great Blog...I too am feeling that crunch and have been doing some of the same things, and you gave me new ideas. Thanks for sharing!

AnnQ said...

The good news is it's now Trendy to be thrifty, no matter how much money you make!

I used to be embarrassed to ask how much things cost if there wasn't a price tag, and now I have no problem not only asking, but telling people I'm unwilling to spend a certain amount.

Cheap is In!

Angela said...

The library is free!

And they have MOVIES too!

Globetrotting Cacti said...

I agree that thrifty definatly the way forward at the moment. There are so many coupons that I am using that I would not have considered using a year or two ago - feels great to be saving some money. Will definatly be worth it....

Kim said...

I just joined paperbackswap thanks to your rec. :)

heidi said...

I've been thinking a lot about saving money too, since I'm going to have a few bills that are higher than I'm used to. I haven't shopped at the Dollar Store for a while but after reading your blog I decided to go tonight! I found some great things (brand name stuff too) for when I move into my house (like a shower curtain liner & handsoap)! Another great way to cut costs is to cut out cable, if you can tolerate it. These days you really can watch a lot online and if you have netflix or something, you have access to a LOT of movies online too! Just a thought!

heidi said...

PS- The library is a great source of entertainment too! Books and magazines, sure, but I've also gotten lots of music and movies too!

Optimistic Pessimist said...

All great tips. I'm going to have to definitely use a few when I move out on my own again. I'm going to save save save while living with my parents...I hope.

Shoshanah said...

Not quite the same, but my bank has a save the change plan. So everytime I spend money on my card it puts the change automatically into my savings account. Its nice putting away a few dollars or so without even noticing it.

P.S. I left you an award on my blog

Jessica Dickinson Goodman said...

This does not work for everyone, but consignment shops and goodwill are great places to quench that shopping urge. I sing opera, and need a number of formal dresses--I have bought about 1/2 of my formal dresses at Goodwill.