Here are my few tips for saving $$$$$$
1st- be ORGANIZED! Disorganized people spend MORE money than those who are organized... usually they can't find something and end up going out and RE-buying it!
2nd- BORROW things you don't use often and LEND things out that others need! I am a huge advocate of this one! COME ONE, who really uses that HUGE roaster more than 1 or 2 times a year anyways???? OR that Spritz cookie maker or Pull behind Fertilizer Spreader.... Borrow things from friends, it keeps your space clean and SAVES YOU MONEY!!!!
3rd- Plan your menu's! If the average family eats out 2 1/2 times a week, then my family is WAY WAY WAY below average because we only eat out 1 time a MONTH and it is ALWAYS planned (unless someone else is paying, then we are game!) Plan your food menus and you will be less likely to find yourself asking :"WHAT AM I GOING TO MAKE FOR DINNER???" PLUS, with a PLAN in mind when you head to the store; you can save money, by sticking to the list! I like to See what is ON SALE, make my menu and SHOP from home first (what I already have on hand) and then the sale items! ALSO stocking up on your favorite sales items is a great way to save money in the long run!
ALSO, don't buy convenience foods, these just cost more $! Try to buy INGREDIENCE and make your own foods! This saves money and the food TASTES BETTER TOO!!!!!!!
4th- Buy used! Some things must be bought new like Toilet Paper, notebooks, Food.... but lots of things like Clothes, radios, books, cd's, videos, toys, games, etc..... can all be bought USED! Find a good thrift store near you and shop often. My favorite one near me has 25% off on mondays, and 50% off on holidays, NOW, where do you think you can find me about 1 monday a month for an hour or so! OF COURSE, the local thrift store, buying GREAT used things! Think of it as UP-CYCLING instead of buying USED!
5th- Speaking of BOOKS, use that local library of yours! I look and request online and they have the books all ready for me to pick up! HOW great is that???????
As a Stay at home mom of 4 children living on a small 1 person income, and a even smaller part time income of my own; I can tell you, I bake everything from scratch, eat natural foods with NO junk in it, grow a huge garden, and try to buy used when every possible. Only travel to the cities to do shopping once a week and if I forget anything, I wait until the following week or ASK a friend to pick it up if they are heading that way! ( We live 30 miles from the GOOD stores). I teach my children about Wants and Needs and let them know that their NEEDS will always be supplied by us, but sometimes the WANTS their wants are just that; WANTS!
Don't be too proud to say "I CAN'T AFFORD THAT!" when someone is pressuring you to spend money! Or you can always say "I CHOOSE NOT TO AFFORD THAT!" It will keep the money you have in your pocket or the money you don't have from being spent!!!!!