20 November 2008

foto free fursday

Being pretty busy these days and only seeing daylight from my desk, I'm not getting in much photography. And I've never considered myself much of a writer, so those two factors add up to one boring blog. My lack of proper grammar and spelling, however, does not limit me from writing.

So I'll throw out this question...

What should I be doing to save money? There's panic in the streets about stocks bottoming out, people losing their homes, the second coming and some other things I'm only half paying attention to when NPR unsuccessfully wakes me up in the morning, instead managing to tangle it's story into my dream causing to me think Nina Totenburg is styling my hair. I mention to Nina, that I don't have any stocks or savings, so no worries there! Almost nine years ago now, we purchased a fifteen year mortgage at 5.05%, so we're sitting alright on that account. We rarely eat out, not even fast food, and have never even had a pizza delivered. I buy shoes and jeans as soon as my last pair wear out. We see about nine movies a year, always a matinee, never getting popcorn or soda. I have never been to a spa or had a manicure. So, as for all these reports of people who are cutting back on their waxing and collagen, the equivalent for me would be to sit in the dark and use cheaper toilet paper. Neither of which I'm willing to do. Have you ever wiped your ass in the dark? Bad things can happen. Especially with thin paper!

If anyone out there would care to share some of their realistic ways of cutting back, by all means share. I'd like to hear from those of you who don't buy your salad pre-chopped in a bag. Seriously, that's just wasteful.


Donna said...

I switched to boxed wine. The Wine Cube varieties from Target are actually pretty decent. Best of all, one cube = four bottles!


James M said...

Since you've got a Real Job(tm) you should do like Haven and I; set 7% of your pay to direct-deposit to a high-yield bank account that you can't get at without some troubles. I set up a Citibank account two years ago when I was out in NYC, I declined checks and my ATM cards are in a block of ice in the freezer. We just wind up working with 7% less money then, we don't even think about it.

Much love to the family, especially sans-Cub.

perry mason said...

These are some things that have helped me on day to day expenses....

Over the course of several weeks, turn your thermostat down. Don't do it suddenly or you'll suffer. I now keep mine at about 53 degrees all winter and am rarely cold after throwing on another sweater when I get home. If I am cold, I get up and get moving for a few minutes. I only turn it up for elderly family members when they visit. Everyone else understands that I can keep the house or I can turn the heat up...but not both. It's also a good excuse to snuggle up with your honey!

Invest in an electric blanket so you aren't cold at night. Invest in some good silk long underwear. They aren't bulky and feel pretty nice too! Believe it or not, they can be kinda sexy once you touch 'em :-)

Don't use your dryer as much; especially for towels. Make a laundry line in the basement or the garage (or invest in a drying rack). Amazing how the things will dry even in the cold. If you can stand the feel, hang up your jeans and socks too. I only dry my tshirts now because I don't like the feel of stiff shirts.

Mix your own cleaning products. There's very little that you can't do with borax, vinegar and baking soda and maybe some cheap bleach. A lot of what you pay for is packaging. Stop using paper towels for the majority of your cleaning. A bar rag or old kitchen towel is cheaper and lasts longer. Don't buy in bulk if you honestly aren't going to use something all up within it's lifespan (or yours).

If you're a reader, stop buying books, magazines, and such. Your taxes go to the local library...use it. Saves space in your house too.

See if you can commute with someone; even a few days a week cuts down on expenses. It can be a pain to coordinate trips and personalities but it's worth it. Even if you only commute part of the way with someone.

Coordinate your errands so that you're not making extra trips. Walk when you can. Then you can have a little extra do to something on the weekends.

Put plastic on your windows so that they go around the woodwork, not just on the window portion. Energy is usually lost around that area, not the window itself.

Turn your water heater down. It's amazing what an energy hog those things are. Wrap your water pipes in insulation if they aren't already.

Coordinate your baking if you use the oven a lot. Bake several supper dishes at a time rather than one at a time. Keeping the oven hot is cheaper than warming it up for frequent use; especially on older ovens. For small amounts, a toaster oven will work just as well with less energy use. Get a used one and it's a cheap investment.

bon bon said...

excellent suggestions all around! i do use many of your suggestions now, p.m. for example; i better make a batch a brownies while these potatoes cook! (that's where that winter weight comes from!) however, 53ยบ is much too chilly for me. you may not realize i'm in wisconsin. but the water heater is set low, plus registers are shut in the rooms we rarely use. i do rewash rags, frequent the library, and we put plastic on the north windows but the pugs find it necessary to view all outdoor activity, so that wouldn't last throughout the house. actually, getting rid of the pugs would be a great savings!! just kidding. i love my babies...

james~ yes, i'm guilty of not putting enough away. i'll be working until i'm 85. or i'll just move to canada and go to prison to finish out my golden years.

donna~ your suggestion is the best of all, because after one box of wine, who gives a crap about the anything else?!

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fly over country, United States
this blog is my "live" photo album of sorts. occasionally, i'll throw in some art i've done or some work of my husband's as he's an artist as well. we have a nice yard in a quiet neighborhood with two pugs and a cat, all black. which most of my photos will attest too. ;) i'd love to hear from you, but happy for you to just browse. hope you find something to make you smile. b.