Friday, August 12, 2005

Frugal vs. Cheap!

Last night, at work, I was talking to the other nurse about how much I like Mission stores and thrift shops, rummage sales and garbage picking. I kind of look at this as a fun little hobby, and not necessarily because I am frugal. I enjoy fine dining, but I've learned that I really like to cook. Before I met Greg, I probably went out to a nice restaurant at least once a week. Somehow, its just not in the budget anymore. I like nice clothes, but because I wear scrubs 5 days a week, I really don't bother much with my wardrobe. When I do wear 'real' clothes, I've got my favourite standbys. I enjoy the finer things in life, but don't feel that I NEED to have them, I am just as happy window shopping. Or buying my little treasures at the above mentioned places. Any extra money I have goes towards our summer getaway, or vacations.
So, I was telling this to the other nurse last night and she seemed to recall this family who live in Arizona, earn $33,000.00 per year, have five kids and live the frugal life Home Economiser
So, of course, I looked at the site. Pretty impressive really. But the problem i have is that they are SO strict with their budget! There is no room for frivality at all. They go grocery shopping once a month and have figured out which week to eat their fruit so that it won't go bad. Bananas and grapes the first week, and apples and oranges the rest of the month. Jeez, what if they wanted bananas in week 3?
Anyway, some of the tips were good, but some where just plain old kinda cheap. They have a newsletter with reader tips:
SOAP SLIVERS LIVE ON!After you use a bar of soap for a while, it gets too small & slippery to work very well. Right? Here’s how you can get more suds out of your bar of soap. After you’ve saved up a handful of leftover “slivers”, take a pair of old panty hose and get out your sewing machine. Using the panty hose, cut out & make a small bag to enclose a handful of soap slivers. Make it snug around the soap slivers. Sew it up, keeping the slivers inside. I use the resulting ‘soap pouch’ at the bathroom sink. I’ve been doing this now for about 6 months and it works great. Sometimes I think it lathers & cleans hands better than a plain bar of soap — I suggest light-colored panty hose and thread for a nicer appearance.Keith Schrader – Wichita, KS
I think this is cheap. And, ya. Fer sure I'm going to lug out a sewing machine to make this project. Hmmm...maybe if I save enough soap I can make enough of these to give away as gifts!
PUT PLASTIC IN THE CAN (2.05)I've found a couple of great uses for all of those plastic grocery bags that I've accumulated.1) Use them to line small waste baskets. It makes them very easy to empty.2) Use them to collect "garbage" when cooking or baking. Place egg shells, wrappers, discarded fat, etc, in the bag while cooking, tie closed and toss in the trash.Jennifer Dahl - Bayard, IA
Really! How innovative! I would never have thought of this myself! Duh...
HAIR RAISING SAVINGSMost salons charge outrageous prices for a haircut. Learn to cut your family's hair yourself! There are videos and books in the library showing you how. Or maybe you have a friend who is a professional stylist and would teach you the tricks of the trade. Invest in a good pair of scissors and a cape (find them at a beauty supply store). I cut my husband's hair and he cuts mine. We do it out on the patio so the house doesn't get dirty. You can learn to do this! And you'll save a ton of money each year.Heather Peacock - Jackson Hole, Wyoming
I could just picture Greg and I chopping away at each others hair. We'd look like Dumb and Dumberer. I think we'll try this at the trailer...the birds can then use our hair to make their nests!
HOT CURLING IRON MITI use my curling iron 2-3 times a week and hate to leave it in the sink, unplugged but still hot. So I took my old ironing board cover and made mits for the differing sizes. The smaller one is: 11 1/2" x 4 and the larger is 12" x 6 1/2". Add a short pocket in the front for the plug and they store great.
I cut the pieces for the smaller one by laying the material flat and measuring 8 1/4" across, this is 1/4" seam allowance and 4" wide finished size. I then make another cut that is 12" long, again leaving a 1/4" seam allowance. I fold it in half and make the cut edge rounded for aesthetic reasons. I then cut another piece half again the length, but same width for the plug pocket. I sew a piece of binding tape along the top edge of both pieces. Then I lay the pocket piece on top of the larger piece of material and fold in half. I sew the cut edge with seam binding and it is ready to go! I also store these in my cupboard in their cases and have used quilted placemats (lining it with ironing board material) from yard sales and thrift stores to make them as gifts. I have also taken a small piece of the matching material and added a hanging loop for those that hang their irons.Michelle Carr - US Military Overseas
Did anybody really bother to read this one? You've got to be pretty damn anal to actually make a curling iron cover. But if you must, why not just use an oven mitt from the dollar store? Seems pretty simple to me.
A BOUNTY OF . . . BOUNTYWe reuse paper towels that have been used to absorb water off of freshly washed vegetables. We simply leave them out for a day and they're dry and ready to use.Rick and Jane Schell – Eagle, Idaho
This is just stupid. Are you not going to immediately use the freshly washed vegetables? Why dry them? If you must...why not use a clean tea towel? I'd love to see what these people's kitchen looks like with bits of drying Bounty all over the place!

Anyway, check out the site. Home Economiser
It's quite interesting to see how the Economides live. I believe that is their real family name!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

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