Sunday, January 31, 2010

Another Cleaning Cost Saver + Recycling

I used to absolutely love the little Clorox type disposable cleaning wipes. They were convenient, and I could throw it away and forget about it. But I did begin to notice that the price of using those can add up quickly. Plus, really it just adds to the trash at the landfill. Aside from the fact that there were yucky chemicals in them, I decided that we needed to do something else.

You can recycle old clothes, dishtowels, etc., that are not nice enough to pass on to someone else, plus you keep them out of the landfill. You can do this by cutting them up and using them as cleaning rags. I just recently got some new dishtowels for Christmas, so it motivated me to go through my old towels and make some of the less-than-stellar looking ones into cleaning rags. I cut them into quarters, and they make an excellent rag. It saves you money, plus, it is environmentally friendly all at the same time!

Monday, January 25, 2010

Save On Milk - Powdered Milk for Cooking

Invest in a big, bulk box of powdered milk to lower your milk costs. I mix up some of my powdered milk for use in cooking and baking. Since the powdered milk is cheaper in the long run than regular milk is, it is more cost effective to use for cooking. It costs even less to buy the powdered milk in bulk than it is to buy the smaller packages of it, and it does not affect the taste of the food it is used in. I cannot tell the difference! If you do alot of cooking and baking, you may want to consider this as an option to further reduce your food expenses.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Tips for Cutting Costs

We are so very blessed here in America. There are certain things that have been deemed by many to be necessities, but really aren't. I am talking about things like cable TV, cell phones, extra phone services, internet, etc. If you consider how much you are spending each month for these types of services, and then calculate what it costs per year for these services, it can be a real eye opener on how much these things actually cost.

There are several ways to cut costs associated with these services. One would be to cancel the cable and just watch the local channels that are free. Is your phone service basic phone service, or is it a spendier package (caller ID, call waiting, etc.)? If you have a home phone, is a cell phone really necessary? These are all things to consider and weigh when looking to cut your costs. If you feel you cannot part with these services, some companies offer a package deal called bundling (phone, cable, internet all from the same company, discounted for using all of their services). It is definitely worth it to look into some sort of bundling deal or promotion, it will often save lots of money off of your monthly bills for these services seperately.

Assess how often you are using your cell phone. For us, the monthly cost of around $50 was not worth it. I was only using my cell phone very rarely, so we decided that it was something that could be cut once our contract was up. I bought a Tracfone for around $10, and now I only buy minutes for what I actually need. I don't use it often, but it is nice to have for the convenience of communicating with my husband, or in case of emergency. Now we spend $30 every few months for cell phone service instead of $50 a month.

These are just a few ideas, but if you need to cut costs, these ideas can really significantly make a difference in your budget.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Reinventing Leftover Spaghetti Noodles

The other night we had stir fry with spaghetti noodles. We usually have leftover spaghetti noodles after eating this particular meal. I really hate throwing food away because it is wasteful, and because essentially it is throwing money away. I know my kids will not eat them plain, so I decided to try something new and a little different for us.

I took 1/4 cup of butter, melted it and sauted a heaping tablespoon of minced garlic in it. Then I took the leftover noodles and mixed it in with the butter and garlic, and added about a tablespoon of Italian seasoning herbs. I also sprinkled a little bit of sea salt in there. I stirred it until the mixture was heated all the way through.

Needless to say, it was a hit! They called them "restaurant noodles", and ate them up in no time! We now have a new favorite to try with our leftover noodles, and it saves money because it uses up our leftovers rather than throwing them away. Plus, fixing them this way makes them into something new and different for the kids, and they actually like it!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Making Your Fancy Coffee Last Longer

Every Christmas, I usually receive a package or two of fancy flavored coffees. I have discovered a way to have my flavored coffee, and make it last longer too. Really, it's pretty simple. When I put the coffee in my coffee maker, I use half flavored and half regular coffee (i.e. 1 scoop flavored with 1 scoop regular coffee). I still get the flavor, but my flavored coffee will last twice as long because I am not using as much of it.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

More Free Crochet Patterns, Plus Knitting!

I almost cannot believe it took me this long to discover an awesome website, chock full of free patterns! I just recently became a member of an online knitting/crocheting community. It is called . I have already been browsing through all the patterns they have available, tons of them! They offer knitting patterns too. There are also plenty of patterns available to purchase as well. But there is no shortage of free patterns! It is free to join the group. Head on over and sign up today if you want to enter a needleworkers paradise!

Saturday, January 2, 2010

After Christmas Clearance

Christmas has come and gone, so now is the time to stock up on cheap supplies for next year! Things like wrapping paper, tape, ribbon, bows, gift tags, and even some gift sets (plus candy if you like) are on super clearance right now at most stores. I went to Hobby Lobby today, and their Christmas things were 80 % off. I picked up a few things for only a few dollars total. If you have the storage space, go for it and get yourself some good deals! Reminder: it is not a good deal if you won't ever use it!