Living On Less
Here are some ways that my family lives on less:
1. We do not have cable television. My children do not watch much television, my husband and I both work, so we decided it was a waste of money. We do enjoy the Food Network and miss some shows on The Discovery Channel, but we have subscribed to Netfix for $9.99/month. We are able to stream television shows, movies, etc through our Wii and watch them on the television.
2. We do not pay for a Internet service at our house. My husband and I both have cell phones with a data plan. We tether (using our Internet through our cell phone) to use the Internet at our home. We pay $10 extra per month for a data plan, which is well worth it!
3. We eat leftovers for our lunches during the week. If we buy lunch, we only buy it once during the week.
4. We use second hand clothing for our children. We have lots of good friends that pass down unwanted or outgrown clothing. Our parents also buy lots of new clothing for our children, so we have been lucky to not have to buy many clothes.
5. We do not give our children allowance. If our children work, we pay them. If our children decide not to work, we do not pay them.
6. We use coupons and look at store ads to get the best deals! We also make a list before going into the store, so we do not get side tracked!
7. We use cold water when washing full loads of laundry.
8. We hang dry clothes during the spring/summer/fall months. I also hang clothes on hangers from the shower rod.
9. We turn the heat down in the house when we go to work for the day. We usually keep it at 72 while we are at home and then 68 when we got to work.
10. We sell our old clothes that we don't wear and other junk on ebay or craigslist. We also donate clothes as well.
11. We use our friends and grandparents for (free) babysitting when needed on weeknights or weekends. My parents are always out #1 choice for babysitting. We have swapped babysitting with our friends over the years and that seems to work out great!
12. My husband is going to start walking with work in the Spring, since we live 1.2 miles from his place of employment. This will save on gas and will be great exercise for him!
13. Read Dave Ramsey's Books. Listen to Dave Ramsey. Get Dave's Baby Steps Stuck in Your Head!!! Live Like No One Else, So Later You Can Live Like No One Else!
14. We cut our own hair! My husband shaves his head. I cut my children's hair. I use clippers on my son and scissors on my daughters. When I cut my hair, I pull it all into a ponytail on the top of my head. I then wrap a rubber band around it and cut it in one straight line, horizontally from my face. When I let my hair down from the pony tail, it is layered! My hair is wavy and curly, so it looks great!
15. Make your own cleaning supplies:
Window cleaner recipe:
1/4 cup white vinegar
1/2 gallon warm water
1/2 teaspoon of
liquid dish soap
Since newer glass is thinner, and therefore dries quicker
omit the soap and use vinegar and water.
The Use of White Vinegar (we use this a lot!):
"White distilled vinegar is a popular household cleanser, effective for killing most mold, bacteria, and germs, due to its level of acidity. Cleaning with white distilled vinegar is a smart way to avoid using harsh chemicals. You’ll also be glad to know that it is environmentally friendly and very economical." -vinegartips.com
Vinegar can be used on almost anything! You can use it to get out spaghetti stains, to clean your toilets and counter tops, to stop insect bites from itching, and it can even be used as a pesticide! We use it to keep ants out of our house! You can add some white distilled vinegar to your dogs water to help rid him/her of flees! It can be added to your bird bath water to help it stay clean. The best part of white distilled vinegar is that it is SO CHEAP and it does not have the horrible odors from cleaners!