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share your favorite "frugal living" tip

technodoll
January 13th, 2007, 01:14 AM
i'm always looking for ways to save a little here and there... beyond the basics of looking for sales and shopping for the best deals, what are your tips?

I dilute the dishsoap with 1/3 water...

I wash floors with a mix of hot water & vinegar...

Ifrequent the Dollar Store for brand-name shampoos, conditioners, soaps and shower gels as well as kitchen stuff such as plastic garbage bags, zipper lunch bags, dish sponges and foil paper...

:dog:

Prin
January 13th, 2007, 01:30 AM
Buy lots of fruit when it's at it's peak, wash it and freeze it.

Go to the same stores over and over (some reward loyalty).

Buy gas on Thursdays (super = price of not-so-super)- well, here in Qc anyway...

Ooo potages! I learned that this week. They're very filling when you can't afford to eat much.:o The new kind of potato dish! :D

hmmm... that's all I can think of right now...

technodoll
January 13th, 2007, 01:36 AM
oh yes! thick soups, potages... tasty, nutritious and cheap! i toss all the veggie leftovers and the parts we don't eat as well as the "going too soft" stuff in the freezer and when i have enough, they go in a big pot with chicken bones and voilą! great broth... add some beans, rice or pasta or barley or whatever, and chopped fresh veggies like carrots, celery, mushrooms, spinach, whatever is on hand... :cloud9:

Lukka'sma
January 13th, 2007, 10:22 AM
Use baking soda as a cleaner. Make it into a paste and clean jewellery, sinks, most of your kitchen areas. Put a small dab into the palm of your hand and mix it with shampoo to remove hair spray buildup. It is a very useful product and has so many more uses than what I have come up with.

Byrd
January 13th, 2007, 10:44 AM
I loooove the dollar stores.

Um, what is/are potages?

wdawson
January 13th, 2007, 11:06 AM
http://www.allthingsfrugal.com/dumpster.htm

jiorji
January 13th, 2007, 12:04 PM
http://www.allthingsfrugal.com/dumpster.htm

hehe i think that's taking it a bit too far :o

papillonmama
January 13th, 2007, 12:26 PM
I make meal plans, it makes shopping easier 'cause you can just list everything you need by checking the meal plan. And just 'cause I make a meal plan it doesn't mean we stick to it military style, it just means that the ingredients are all there. I have a bread maker and use it often. We also buy alot of our treats unmade, we bake cakes, and cookies instead of always buying them.

There are also lots of dog cookie recipes here and some other places online, last year for Christmas I didn't have enough to get the dogs anything special so I baked them cookies.

Instead of the baseboard heaters I use smaller space heaters and I taped the backdoor so there wasn't as much cold coming in, I also used the insulating foam to fill in all of the cracks around the house and the huge mail slot in the main door which last year made my house so freezing it was almost unbearable.

I also go to the dollar store and if I find a good brand of dish soap, shampoo, whatever, I stock up.

hazelrunpack
January 13th, 2007, 01:34 PM
Don't adopt 6 dogs :o

~michelle~
January 13th, 2007, 01:41 PM
hmmm frugal living..... Im a student, i should know something... Oh i try to go to bars that have cheap night beers :) hmmmm... my mom is really good at saving money, hmmmm none of it was past on to me though.....:shrug:
i do love the dollar store though :D

Maya
January 13th, 2007, 03:24 PM
Sorry this isn't much fun but I just go without as much as possible. I also make soup a lot of the time, fresh is pricey so I save anything vegetable. You can get more for your money by preparing your own beans rather than getting them in a can. I'd totally stock up when things are on sale but as it is now I don't have enough to eat by the end of each month.

technodoll
January 13th, 2007, 07:08 PM
I always do the laundry in cold water, with Arctic Power liquid (bought on sale, of course!) and using half of the recommended amount - does the job perfectly well :thumbs up

Frenchy
January 13th, 2007, 07:55 PM
I just don't eat :shrug: just kidding :laughing:

Frenchy
January 13th, 2007, 07:56 PM
got another one, I get more dogs in winter to keep me warm, less $$ in heating. :rolleyes: I'll stop now....or will I ?

erykah1310
January 13th, 2007, 08:01 PM
I live by sales... flyers on thursdays and fridays are the make up of my shopping list.

I go to Value Village for everyday around the house wear... some good deals there sometimes. Saves good clothes for "good times"

I use all my old clothes, cut them up in squares and sew them into blankets for the dogs, fill with stuffing ( not the food kind) and they have luxurious beds.:thumbs up

all i can think of off hand right now.

happycats
January 13th, 2007, 08:09 PM
Don't adopt 6 dogs :o


LOL I feel your:2cents: pain!!

Don't save 5 cats:o

always do laundry in cold with tide cold water.
white vinager is great(and cheap) for so many things
Windows
floors
carpet stains
all cleaning really
also one cup in the laundry rinse cycle makes a great fabric softener.
buy cat food and litter in bulk
car pool
limit take out or convenience foods
find a vet that gives discounts for a multi pet family

erykah1310
January 13th, 2007, 08:11 PM
Hydrogen Peroxide also a good disinfectant/stain remover!

technodoll
January 13th, 2007, 08:14 PM
i don't pass up buying a piece of clothing i like and is on sale just because it says "dry cleaning only" or has complicated washing instructions... anything can be put into a cotton pillowcase (tied with a knot) and washed in cold water along with the regular laundry. Hang to dry :thumbs up

LynLyn
January 13th, 2007, 11:50 PM
Go to Mom's/Dad's/aunt's/friends house for dinner....often

mostly parents.:thumbs up

technodoll
January 14th, 2007, 10:01 AM
oh! how about those Entertainment Books? just bought the Montreal one for $24, shipped to my door... we use two 2-for-1 coupons for our favorite restaurant and the book has more than paid for itself. a whole year of freebies and discount coupons! plus the monthly online stuff, too. :thumbs up

Byrd
January 14th, 2007, 12:45 PM
Hydrogen Peroxide also a good disinfectant/stain remover!

I have a great list of the many uses of peroxide, if anyone wants it.

technodoll
January 14th, 2007, 01:04 PM
I want it :) please :goodvibes:

Byrd
January 14th, 2007, 01:22 PM
*This is taken from a forwarded e-mail, so "I" does not refer to me personally*

1. Take one capful (the little white cap that comes with the bottle) and hold in your mouth for 10 minutes daily, then spit it out. (I do it when I bathe.)
No more canker sores and your teeth will be whiter without expensive pastes. Use it instead of mouthwash. (small print says mouth wash and gargle right on the bottle).

2. Let your toothbrushes soak in a cup of "Peroxide" to keep them free of germs.

3. Clean your counters, table tops with peroxide to kill germs and leave a fresh smell. Simply put a little on your dishrag when you wipe, or spray it on the counters.

4. After rinsing off your wooden cutting board, pour peroxide on it to kill salmonella and other bacteria.

5. I had a fungus on my feet for years - until I sprayed a 50/50 mixture of peroxide and water on them (especially the toes) every night and let dry.

6. Soak any infections or cuts in 3% peroxide for five to ten minutes several times a day. My husband has seen gangrene that would not heal with any medicine, but was healed by soaking in peroxide.

8. Fill a spray bottle with a 50/50 mixture of peroxide and water and keep it in every bathroom to disinfect without harming your septic system like bleach or most other disinfectants will.

9. Tilt your head back and spray into nostrils with your 50/50 mixture
whenever you have a cold, or plugged sinuses. It will bubble and help to kill the bacteria. Hold for a few minutes then blow your nose into a tissue.

10. If you have a terrible toothache and cannot get to a dentist right away, put a capful of 3% peroxide into your mouth and hold it for ten minutes several times a day. The pain will lessen greatly.

11. And of course, if you like a natural look to your hair, spray the 50/50 solution on your wet hair after a shower and comb it through. You will not have the peroxide burnt blonde hair like the hair dye packages, but more natural highlights if your hair is a light brown, faddish, or dirty blonde. It also lightens gradually so it's not a drastic change.

12. Put half of a bottle of peroxide in your bath to help rid boils, fungus, or other skin infections.

13. You can also add a cup of peroxide instead of bleach to a load of whites in your laundry to whiten them. If there is blood on clothing, pour directly on the soiled spot. Let it sit for a minute, then rub it and rinse with cold water. Repeat if necessary.

14. I use peroxide to clean my mirrors with, and there is no smearing which is why I love it so much for this.

jessi76
January 14th, 2007, 01:23 PM
my best tip: Buy Haley's Hints books. FABULOUS tips for everything, saving money, saving time, safety, cleaning, kids, cars, gardening, home tips, etc....

a sampling...

1. if you put marbles in the bottom of a spray bottle, it will raise the liquid level, allowing you to use almost ALL of it.

2. use an old toothbrush and warm water to quickly brush the blade of your disposable razor - makes them last longer.

3. a matchbook stike strip doubles as an emery board in a pinch.

4. sharpen your scissors - snip through a piece of sandpaper several times.

5. pour leftover shampoo into your hand soap dispenser. it's milder on hands than hand soap. works great, and doesn't go to waste.

6. decorate a smoke alarm as a star for atop your real christmas tree. if there's ever a problem it'll sound an alarm faster than the other detectors in the house.

7. old truck tires make instant sandboxes for kids. put old tire in your yard, fill w/ sand, and viola - instant sandbox.

8. put bath decals on the bottom of a kiddie pool to prevent slips - great for kids (an even older dogs!)

9. grab hold of change in the bottom of you purse w/ a small fridge magnet. magnet will grab the silver coins.

10. business card holder - punch a hole in the corner of cards, slip them onto a shower curtain ring. easy to flip through, and they are all stored together.

PetFriendly
January 14th, 2007, 02:44 PM
I make lunches for everyone to bring with them to work, and we make our own coffee and bring it in thermoses.

We don't usually eat out

I make the dog's clothing

Byrd
January 14th, 2007, 03:05 PM
One I just thought of as I'm doing the laundry, try to time your loads so that as one is coming out of the dryer the next is going in, the heat from the last load will actually help the next load dry quicker.

PetFriendly
January 14th, 2007, 03:14 PM
In the winter we hang dry most of our clothing, so we cut down on power usage, and don't need a humidifier.

Shamrock
January 14th, 2007, 03:54 PM
These are some really great and innovative tips!:highfive:

I feel so.. wasteful... washing in hot water.. have got to start using the cold.
It obviously cleans the clothes as well, or wouldnt be so popular.

I dont seem to have the same zest for employing cost-saving devices that I once did, but I certainly comparison shop, and ask for discounts whenever I can.
I turn the thermostat off at night.. or at least down very low.
Wash my own car rather than use a car wash.
Avoid expensive convenience foods.

Been using the same piece of tin foil since the eighties.:D

wdawson
January 14th, 2007, 03:55 PM
take your 2ply toilet paper and seperate into 1 ply........lasts twice as long.:D

buy 2% milk...dilute 50% with water and wala you have 1% milk:D

drive only half way to work and walk the rest....save 50% on gas:D

steal your neighbours newspaper.....save 100% on the subscription rate:D

erykah1310
January 14th, 2007, 04:03 PM
Old toilet paper rolls make great organizers for "charger cords" and you can write on them which thing that cord charges, never have to deal with testing everyone on everything to find a match

break up unused candle wax into little chunks and put in old Glade candle jars with a wick kit and voila! a new candle.

tuck used dryer sheets between couch cusions, give off nice scent.

I clean my windows with vinegar and coffee filters, streak free!!!!!!:thumbs up

technodoll
January 14th, 2007, 04:08 PM
wayne, mock it all you like but it is us women that hold the house's purse strings and stretch that little dollar so that you men always have that toilet paper at arm's reach ;)

erykah1310
January 14th, 2007, 04:50 PM
wayne, mock it all you like but it is us women that hold the house's purse strings and stretch that little dollar so that you men always have that toilet paper at arm's reach ;)

Yet apparently need a class on "how to install the new roll" :D

Anyone else have that issue or is it just around here:shrug:

wdawson
January 14th, 2007, 05:04 PM
oh i'm just kidding.....i did post the all things frugal link......erykah you forgot the class on lid etiquette:D

Frenchy
January 14th, 2007, 06:31 PM
take your 2ply toilet paper and seperate into 1 ply........lasts twice as long.:D

buy 2% milk...dilute 50% with water and wala you have 1% milk:D

drive only half way to work and walk the rest....save 50% on gas:D

steal your neighbours newspaper.....save 100% on the subscription rate:D

well I tought it was funny :p

technodoll
January 14th, 2007, 06:41 PM
actually the walking to work is a good idea, you get health benefits and save on polluting the environment :o

another one: if you have friends who like the same movies as you do, rent a few for a week and share. :goodvibes:

wdawson
January 14th, 2007, 06:47 PM
on the video thing.......go to blockbuster.....no late fees

Byrd
January 14th, 2007, 07:05 PM
Or, what I do, get the movie network, pay $15/month and watch as many movies as you want for the price of one theatre or 3 rentals. Sure, you have to wait a tiny little bit longer to see a movie, but personally I really don't mind that.

actually the walking to work is a good idea, you get health benefits and save on polluting the environment :o

March 1 to Nov 30 I do, it's a 20 minute walk, I save money on gas and parking, and it feels soooo good! :D

erykah1310
January 14th, 2007, 08:42 PM
Take advantage of "ALL" family plans out there. Saves alot of money... Satellite Dishes, Satellite Radio's, Cell Phone Plans... share with family and friends ( just be sure the friends you share with are known for PAYING their bills.):D

~michelle~
January 14th, 2007, 10:16 PM
wow you guys are true money savers..... i am going to need to take notes.
I do things that are environmentally sound that do save money, i just was doing it for the environment not the $$
such as cleaning many things with vinegar, ans using washable clothes to do my dusting (that swifer crap if filling up our landfills!!!) hmmm... i try to hang alot of my laundry to dry. better for environment, saves money and is nicer to the fabric!

Stacer
January 14th, 2007, 10:59 PM
We only get the minimim services that are required to make our lives convenient. We have lite internet, basic cable, pay as you go cell phones, cheap internet home phone. We used to have full service everything, then about 2 years ago I thought, why are we paying for all of this when we don't use half of it, so I went on a rampage cutting out the crap that we don't use/don't need, we're probably saving close to 200 bucks a month compared to what we used to pay for these services. We also shop at Asian supermarkets for some of our groceries, it's alot cheaper than Loblaws or Sobey's. We try to prepare most of our meals at home, and take lunches to work as opposed to buying. We go through our CDs and VHS/DVDs once in a while and get rid of stuff we no longer listen to or watch and sell them at the used CD place, you can get a fair chunk of money for old CDs. I can't think of anything else.

Joey.E.CockersMommy
January 14th, 2007, 11:06 PM
I went on a diet - jecms frugal living tip :D

just kidding (sort of) - when my wash clothes start getting dingies I use them to wash the windows.

I only wash my hair every few days -

I add water to dish soap:)

technodoll
January 14th, 2007, 11:15 PM
i recycle all old t-shirts by cutting into squares and using as rags, old socks are great for dusting (slip them on your hands). never pass up a "sales bin" at grocery stores and drugstores (usually located at the end of aisles), mostly seasonal item but who cares? still good stuff, if not for us then for the dogs!

hazelrunpack
January 14th, 2007, 11:33 PM
Yet apparently need a class on "how to install the new roll" :D

Anyone else have that issue or is it just around here:shrug:

nope, erykah...not just around there! Sheesh! I'm hearin' ya loud and clear here! :p

jiorji
January 15th, 2007, 12:19 AM
Or, what I do, get the movie network, pay $15/month and watch as many movies as you want for the price of one theatre or 3 rentals.


i don't know about that. The movie network repeats movies a lot and when they do play something, the selection is horrible for my taste. Then in the summer they get into their "teen movie" phase. Shrug.
It's still much cheaper but you don't have the selection.


ok my only saving tip is "make your own canvasses" :o
....and get a monthly bus pass :thumbs up

erykah1310
January 15th, 2007, 02:29 AM
Oh for those who have no choice but to drive a fair distance to work.... Carpool if you can... saves on gas money, wear and tear, milage on your vehicle, and of course the environment!:thumbs up

Skryker
January 15th, 2007, 03:38 AM
It's more of a night-owl tip, I guess, but I usually do the laundry late at night, when the hydro rates are cheaper. That would probably work for dishwashers, too.

(Do all hydro companies have peak and off-peak usage rates?)

If you have a whole-sale/liquidation place near you, you can get products you like much cheaper sometimes-as either overstock or clearance of old packaging. With tools and appliances, these places also have refurbished stuff, and mismarked or imperfect packages fairly cheap.

technodoll
January 15th, 2007, 09:38 AM
(Do all hydro companies have peak and off-peak usage rates?)

I know Hydro-Quebec does... something like between 4 and 7pm on weekedays? I try not to use any energy-sucking appliances during those times, costs more for nothing :eek: Luckily we only get home around 7pm after taking the dogs out and such... and in the morning we're too busy having breakfast and getting to work that we don't have time to do any laundry or vaccuuming, LOL!

OH! keep your freezer full, even if you need to stuff the empty places with containers of water (makes ice). Reduces wear-and-tear on your freezer as it won't work as hard to keep things cold. Uses less energy, too :thumbs up

Byrd
January 15th, 2007, 01:03 PM
i don't know about that. The movie network repeats movies a lot and when they do play something, the selection is horrible for my taste. Then in the summer they get into their "teen movie" phase. Shrug.
It's still much cheaper but you don't have the selection.

That's fine by me, I like a don't-have-to-think movie now and again. I probably watch about 10 movies a month.

How about the old 'turn down the heat by 2 degrees and put on a sweater'.

Maya
January 15th, 2007, 09:20 PM
Compact fluorescent light bulbs.

Shaykeija
January 15th, 2007, 09:32 PM
take your 2ply toilet paper and seperate into 1 ply........lasts twice as long.:D

buy 2% milk...dilute 50% with water and wala you have 1% milk:D

drive only half way to work and walk the rest....save 50% on gas:D

steal your neighbours newspaper.....save 100% on the subscription rate:D

Mahhahahaha

I like this one lol:p

technodoll
January 15th, 2007, 09:32 PM
we got a box of those for christmas (strange gift but original and useful!), haven't put any in yet... don't they give out a "cold" glow? :confused:

Byrd
January 15th, 2007, 09:34 PM
Once they are warmed up I find the glow the same as any other bulb. :shrug:

wdawson
January 15th, 2007, 09:42 PM
the compact bulbs are not really that different.........but the do need to warm up first...oh and they don't last as long as the package says.....i have replaced 3 in the last 9 or so months......

technodoll
January 15th, 2007, 09:45 PM
ok thanks guys! wayne do you leave your lights on all day? just wondering, cuz i do in a couple of rooms except at night all is dark, of course. the lights are for the doggies, it gets dark early half of the year, LOL!

wdawson
January 15th, 2007, 09:58 PM
no...only in one room and it only has one bulb that stays on during the day....the lights are on for about 2hrs in the morning then about 5-6 hrs at night but not all at the same time ...... so i'm not really sure they are money savers.....they cost 5x the cost of regular bulbs and if they need replacing in less than a year.....am i saving money on hydro?

technodoll
January 15th, 2007, 10:00 PM
that,s how they are selling these bulbs... less Wattage, hence lower hydro bills? but how much can you save by switching to these bulbs, per year, if you need to replace them and they're not cheap? :confused:

wdawson
January 15th, 2007, 10:07 PM
i know and they say they have a lifetime warranty........is less than a year a lifetime.........glad i'm not a lightbulb:D

Byrd
January 15th, 2007, 10:14 PM
I live in a basement apartment so my lights are on nearly all the time, I moved in 14 months ago and switched all the bulbs when I moved in, they are still going strong. Bought the 'cheapies' too.

Maya
January 15th, 2007, 11:13 PM
Hmm interesting, I had one that lasted about 7yrs. I only had the one though, I did also turn it on and off quite a bit.:shrug: There are some tips here about how to increase their lifespan:http://www.bchydro.com/powersmart/elibrary/elibrary680.html

meb999
January 15th, 2007, 11:24 PM
I turn the heat down (to like 15) when I leave in the morning...just turn it back up when I get home.....it's not much, but everybit counts ;)

Frenchy
January 16th, 2007, 12:45 PM
no...only in one room and it only has one bulb that stays on during the day....the lights are on for about 2hrs in the morning then about 5-6 hrs at night but not all at the same time ...... so i'm not really sure they are money savers.....they cost 5x the cost of regular bulbs and if they need replacing in less than a year.....am i saving money on hydro?

CONSPIRACY !

PetFriendly
January 16th, 2007, 05:35 PM
CONSPIRACY !

I think it has more to do with the wiring... Bad wires = less life

In either case, they do cut down on the hydro bill.

wdawson
January 16th, 2007, 06:46 PM
but raise my bulb budget

Byrd
January 16th, 2007, 07:11 PM
Thought of another one while grocery shopping.

Instead of buying pre-cut meats, like stir fry beef/chicken, buy whole and slice it yourself. My ex's parents buy roasts and slice them into steaks.

Now, here's the thing, I made fajitas and there are leftovers (beef, green peppers, and onion - all fried) can the leftovers be frozen (I don't want to have it tomorrow, I have something else planned)?

Inisfad
January 18th, 2007, 05:29 PM
I grow my own vegetables and potatoes, use only energy saver light bulbs, make my own compost so I have all my own potting soil, do a lot of thrift shop shopping, 'dollar' stores, etc. only shop 1 day a week, have a huge freezer so I can shop in bulk, and NEVER go food shopping when I'm hungry.

trippincherri
January 19th, 2007, 12:44 PM
Okay so I am not as frugal as I thought, but hey I do have some good ideas!

Instead of buying all those expensive air fresheners to make my house smell pretty, I stuff Bounce dryer sheets into my furnace vents, then replace then about once a month. Smells great especially in the room where my kitty litter box is!

I plant my own veggies out at my parents in the summer then try to can or freeze as much as possible. We make our own pickles,relish,stew meats,jam. You name it we'll make it.

I also wash in cold water and turn the furnace down at night,and during the day if I am not home.

We have a woodstove and use that to heat our home as much as we can, though we ran ot of wood early this year and the snows to deep to get more!

I have this bad habit of buying these expensive candles that my aunt sells, I love them so much I splurge and buy a few at a time since she usually cuts me a deal. But once the candle is all burnt down I scrape whatever is left behind and keep it in ziploc bags then dump it in my oil burner when I want the room to smell nice, that way I use up every last bit.

And I am such a girly girl that I used to spend a ton on make-up and bath stuff all those fun feminine things, then I got smart and started selling Avon ha ha ha, now I make enough money to not have to work anywhere else PLUS I get all my make-up,bath stuff,clothes, and there's colognes and things for my man too pretty much free! So I shop like mad and still make a profit.
I don't know if that is really a frugal living tip :o but for me it is!:laughing: