Being frugal takes time.
Sometimes it is time I don’t have.
I remember when I used to hang up my laundry…ALL my laundry. Any guesses as to how many children I had?
I remember how mortified I was when I found out my friend with 5 children did NOT hang up HER laundry. Surely that was a federal offense! Surely ALL large families hang up their laundry.
I was surely wrong.
I have 6 children in my home. I have 24 hours in a day. There are a few things that have had to go. And yes, some of those things could save me money.
But my time is worth something.
I don’t hang my laundry anymore. It doesn’t make sense. I do hang my diapers to sun on occasion. THAT makes sense.
I don’t clip coupons. I don’t have time. But, I do let other websites tell me where the deals are and then print the coupons from there. I have the time for that.
Sometimes I feel bad about the frugal things I don’t do because I don’t have time. But, I have to remember there are things I do that save us money that others don’t do. It’s a balance. My balance is all dependent upon the time I have versus the time I don’t have versus the priorities I have set.
So, in case you are curious, here is a list of some of the frugal things I do, some of the frugal things I used to do and don’t do anymore, and some of the frugal things I have never done and don’t plan on starting any time soon.
-Cook from scratch
-Use Sears KidVantage program
-Make my own natural deodorant
-Make my own dish detergent
-Garden (since we have moved, I’m hoping to have a garden in my OWN backyard!)
-Keep my hot water heater turned down and my heat and AC turned off as much as possible
-Share bath water/towels
I USED TO:
-Hang my laundry
-Make my own laundry detergent (although I am considering doing this again soon)
-Make my own hand soap (again, gearing up to start doing this again)
-Buy raw milk and make butter (the place I purchased raw milk from was cheaper than buying milk in the store–I haven’t found that resource here yet)
-Make my own baby food (I no longer do this regularly enough to count)
-Buy block cheese and shred it myself
-Shop several different stores to get the best deal
-Cut my husband’s hair (3, soon to be 4 boys is plenty)
I’VE NEVER DONE:
-Raised my own animals for meat, eggs, milk, etc
-Washed & reused ziplock bags
-Clipped tons of coupons (I only clip certain ones and usually only ones that are pertinent to my shopping list. I use the coupon database and deals listings from Money Saving Mom and other strategies I learned from Grocery University)
-Drank only water (I like my soda )
-Made things homemade that are relatively cheap to buy (thus the reason we do not make our own bar soap-Ivory is pretty cheap and pretty natural)
-Take too much time researching how to do things cheaper (if the information comes my way, so be it, but I really do not have the time to search it out)
I’m sure there are many more things that could go into these lists and I’ll probably add to them as I go, but I like having a tangible reminder that I do save a lot…including my time.
So, how about you? What things do you do to save money and what things do you avoid? Are there other reasons that go into your decisions? Have you felt guilty or have you found peace with those decisions?