7 Habits that Will Transform your Finances

7 Habits that Will Transform your Finances

7 Habits that Will Transform your Finances - Take a look at these 7 habits that will transform your finances and lead you on the path to financial recovery.

Have you found yourself falling into some negative financial habits lately? The truth is, it can happen to anyone, and before you know it you may feel like you are in too big of a hole to get out. Well the good news is, just as easily as you found yourself in that hole, you can implement some positive financial habits and find your way out. Take a look at these 7 habits that will transform your finances and lead you on the path to financial recovery.

1. Start keeping receipts.

It may be habit to toss your receipts, but try keeping them for 30 days to get an idea of just how much you are spending. It is way too easy to swipe a card these days, and the end result is us feeling like we aren’t really parting with our cash. Instead save receipts to get a visual of how much cash is going out.

2. Track your spending for 30 days.

Keep a journal that tracks all of your spending for 30 days. Whether it is a dollar purchase or $100 purchase, track it. At the end of the 30 days, you will have a decent idea of where your money is going towards. Bills? Food? Fun? The journal will give you a realistic view of your spending so you can start making changes.

3. Set a weekly budget.

Once you get an idea of where you money is going, you can start setting weekly budgets. Be realistic about the money you are working with, and decide what your immediate weekly needs are. Set a budget at the start of each week for food, bills, fun, etc. Write your budget on paper so you have something to refer to and stay focused on during the week.

4. Try the envelope system.

A great way to budget is to start using the envelope system. Use one envelope for each need you have. Examples for envelopes could be: utilities, groceries, clothing, fun, mortgage, etc. Place the allotted amount you need for each week/month in the envelope and spend it as needed. When the envelope runs out, you are not to take from another envelope or funds to replenish. Only replenish at the start of a new week/month.

5. Find an “accountability friend”

It is always easier to manage money and curb your spending when you have a friend on your side! Find a friend who is just as serious about becoming financially responsible as you. You can meet weekly (or as often as you need) to go over your budgets, share tips, and offer each other plenty of support.

6. Find non-monetary ways to reward yourself.

Many times we feel like we deserve to spoil ourselves. And while we do deserve to be spoiled for our hard work, we don’t always have to do so financially. Treat yourself in non-monetary gifts such as a visit to a local museum on freebie days, nature walks, a good nap, bath, or other treat that doesn’t require money. You can still feel spoiled and rewarded without spending a dime.

7. Pay yourself first.

Regardless of your income, you should always be paying yourself first. This means setting aside some of each paycheck towards savings. You deserve a secure future, and a sound savings account will help you achieve that. Take a small percentage out of each paycheck (and gradually work your way up to a larger percentage as you can) and place it in a savings account you don’t and won’t touch.

As you can see, these 7 financial habits are easy ways to get back on financial track and start enjoying your financial freedom. Give them a try and see if they can’t help you get out of the financial mistakes you have found yourself in.

8 Weeks to a More Organized Christmas: Create Your Holiday Budget

8 Weeks to a More Organized Christmas
Are you excited to work your way to a more organized Christmas?  Today marks the first day and task in the 8 Weeks to a More Organized Christmas series that I hope will be super helpful!

Before we get started, I have a whole bunch of printables and checklists for you to print out to help you along:

Alright, on to the first task, an important one. :) This week, if you haven’t already, sit down with a hot cup of tea, coffee, hot chocolate… and create your holiday budget.  This is what you think your holiday season will cost and will allow you to put limits on your holiday spending to keep you from shopping regrets if a credit card bill comes your way!

Here is an extensive list of things you should keep in mind when you create your holiday budget:


  • spouse
  • kids
  • parents
  • siblings
  • nieces/nephews
  • grandparents
  • neighbors
  • coworkers
  • friends
  • secret Santa gift exchanges


  • tickets
  • dining out
  • clothing

Food (not including regular groceries):

  • baking ingredients
  • dessert ingredients
  • Christmas eve
  • Christmas dinner/brunch
  • Boxing day
  • parties


  • stamps
  • cards/envelopes
  • stationary for family newsletter
  • photos


  • outfits for photos
  • parties
  • Christmas day outfit


  • tree
  • lights
  • ornaments/candles/wreath/etc.
  • craft supplies


  • charities
  • volunteering

Now, those suggestions were just a guideline.  Every family is different and has different needs.  My intent is to bring to mind every possible thing that could incur an expense during the holiday season.  I’m sure many of you won’t even see half of these things on your list.   Also, in my mind, a more organized, more stress-free Christmas means not only less stuff, but a simpler season.

As for my family, we only buy gifts for immediate family and a couple of close friends.  My husband and I only exchange stockings. I make some homemade gifts as well as collect credits throughout the year so I can do some online shopping for “free”.  We most likely won’t be putting up a tree this year since we spend Christmas day away from home and I’m afraid of what Sienna will do to it. I stopped buying Christmas decorations a few years ago and will make do with what we have.   The only outfit we’ll buy is for Sienna since she’s constantly growing.  We won’t be hosting any parties, but I like to bring some baking along to parties we’re invited to.  I intend on handing out Christmas cards to a few friends and the grandparents.  (You can find great deals on Christmas cards every year from various places!)

Enough about us.  :)

If after writing down your expenses, you’re scared of the number you see, you have two options:  Decrease your expenses or increase your income.

Decrease your expenses

To make a happy holiday season, you really don’t need to spend a lot of money.  In fact, I’m daring to say, that being extravagant in your spending can be overwhelming not only for you, but the recipient as well.  As a child, one set of grandparents used to be quite extreme in their gift giving.  It was SO exciting, but I remember being quite overwhelmed with all the gifts once Christmas was over.

Gift giving is probably the easiest expense to cut back on.  If you have a large extended family, consider drawing names so each member is only responsible for one gift.  Or do what our family does and only give gifts to the children.  My parents have also started to set a $20 limit on each other in recent years.  Jesse and I exchange stockings.

Setting a price limit on each gift will allow you to shop within that budget.  If your limit on sister Sue is $30, then that $50 purse is off limits.

It’s possible to decrease your food budget too by shopping the sales and limiting the baking and Christmas dishes you prepare.

When it comes to decorations, why not create some memories by making some homemade decorations?  (I’ll be featuring some ideas in a few weeks)  Or read my Fond, Frugal Christmas Memory post for a fun Christmas tree idea.

Increase your Income

If decreasing your holiday expenses is not an option, then consider increasing your income.  Many retailers hire for the holiday season (and may offer and employee discount!).

A couple of other ideas are to:

  • sell extra baking to those that may not have much time to create their own.
  • sell unwanted household items for cash (make room for new stuff too!)

What are your tips for staying on budget at Christmas time?

Sign up for the 8 Weeks to a More Organized Christmas newsletter to receive a FREE Christmas Dinner Checklist!  This checklist is quite detailed and will help you remember all the details needed for a memory filled dinner with family and friends. You’ll also receive a weekly email with each week’s “task”.

7 Ways to Make the Most of Leftovers

7 Ways to Make the Most of Leftovers

Take a look at these 7 ways to make the most of leftovers so you can stretch your grocery budget each week, even if your family isn't crazy about the idea of leftovers!

Do you find yourself with leftovers after each meal? It’s wasteful just to toss those scraps into the trash, but are you stuck on ideas on what else can you do with them? Even if your family isn’t crazy about leftovers, there are fun ways to make the most of them. Take a look at these 7 ways to make the most of leftovers so you can stretch your grocery budget each week.

1. Invest in proper storage supplies.

Before you begin making the most of your leftovers, invest in some proper storage supplies. Having sturdy plastic or glass ware, plastic bags, and tin foil on hand will help you better store and save leftovers. If you don’t have these items it’s way more tempting to toss leftovers in the trash. Instead, be prepared!

2. Plan menus ahead of time.

When you know you are having steak for dinner, you can easily plan to eat steak salads (using your leftover meat) for the following day. If you know you are having hamburgers, you can plan a beef and vegetable stew for the day after. By using leftovers from your dinner in your subsequent lunch, you can make the most of those leftovers. Meal planning can help you stretch each meal.

3. Get creative with stews and soups.

Leftover chicken, vegetables, beef, and noodles can all be added to a broth and warmed up into a soup or stew. See what combinations you prefer and get creative with your soup recipes.

4. Try chicken salad recipes.

Leftover chicken can be peeled from the bone, added to a bowl, and turned into chicken salad quite easily. Just add a little mayo, a hard boiled egg, and some celery and you have the perfect lunch! Try adding other leftovers into the mix to see if there is a combo you enjoy.

5. Bake those buns!

Turn leftover buns and bread into croutons. Just cube, sprinkle with olive oil and seasonings of your choice, and bake in the oven until nice and crispy. These  are great for soups and salads.

6.“Wrap” leftovers up.

Always have some tortilla wraps on hand to make wraps using your leftovers. You can add steak and vegetables, chicken salad, veggies and cheese, or any other combinations that might appeal to you.

7. Use leftovers as toppings.

Leftover cheese, veggies, and even meat can always be chopped or crumbled and used as baked potato topping, pizza toppings, or soup toppings. Don’t think of these leftovers as a whole meal (if you don’t have a lot) but more as a topping or condiment.

Never look at leftovers the same way again when you give these creative ways to use leftovers a try.

I’d love to hear how you use leftovers in your household!  Share in the comments!

6 Simple Ways to Save Money on Halloween Candy

6 Simple Ways to Save Money on Halloween Candy

If you have a great number of visitors in your neighborhood, you might be wondering how to save a little cash on Halloween candy. Well don’t fret, take a look at these 6 simple ways to save money on Halloween candy and get the sweets you need for less.

It is that time of year again, when ghouls and goblins will be showing up at your door asking for tricks or treats. If you have a great number of visitors in your neighborhood, you might be wondering how to save a little cash on Halloween candy. Well don’t fret, take a look at these 7 simple ways to save money on Halloween candy and get the sweets you need for less.

1. Head to the dollar store.

You will be quite impressed when you see the selection your local dollar store has to offer. Everything from fun sized licorice to candy bars are available as are themed pencils and erasers perfect for passing out.

2. Consider non candy treats.

As mentioned above, your local dollar store will have themed treats like pencils, erasers, and other small Halloween toys. These are great for passing out to trick or treaters and can cost less than a bag of candy. For example pencils can be sold in packs of 18 for $1, while most bags of candy have less than 18 treats. Do the math and see if it makes sense to opt for a non edible treat.

3. Opt for hard candy.

Your hard candy like suckers, mints, gumballs, etc. will always cost less than chocolate bars. When you buy hard or other non-chocolate candies you are sure to save and are able to get more bang for your buck.

4. Don’t buy candy you like.

This is a wonderful tip, because buying your favorite candy means you will eat it. (guilty!) When you eat it, you need to buy more. Instead, choose a candy that isn’t your favorite and you don’t have to worry about half of it being gone before Halloween even gets here. Along the same lines, don’t buy too early because it may end up being eaten before Halloween. :)

5. Don’t buy at the grocery store.

Since Halloween candy is seasonal, it’s a specialty item and will cost more at your local grocery store. Instead, opt to buy it at a retail store like Walmart, Dollar Tree, or Dollarama. You will get better prices and still have an excellent selection.

6. Price match.

Stores will start offering all sorts of deals on their Halloween candy and treats. Don’t take the first deal you see. Instead compare flyers and price match. This is a great way to get a great price without having to run all over town.

Don’t go broke trying to buy Halloween candy this year. Instead, give these tips for saving money on candy a try and you can still fill those treat bags for less.

7 Ways to Save Money on Thanksgiving Dinner

7 Ways to Save Money on Thanksgiving Dinner

7 Ways to Save Money on Thanksgiving Dinner- If you are in charge of Thanksgiving dinner this year, don’t see dollar signs just yet. Give these tips a try and see how frugal your feast can be.

It’s time to start planning those Thanksgiving menus, and you might be wondering how you can save a little money in the process. The great news is, you can still enjoy a hearty Thanksgiving meal while saving some money. Take a look at these 7 ways to save money on Thanksgiving dinner, so you can plan a feast that is easy on the budget as well as pleasing to the stomach.

1. Start stockpiling now.

Don’t wait to start grabbing the ingredients you need. If you see sale prices on items such as soups, broth, rice, noodles, and other items that won’t go bad before Thanksgiving gets here, grab them! These staples can be put to use in many ways so finding a good deal on them is a great reason to grab them.

2. Get creative with starches.

Potatoes, noodles, and rice can all be used in your Thanksgiving menu and are relatively inexpensive to buy. Look at different ways to prepare these foods so you can create your feast for less. Some ideas could be cold salads, oven bakes, loaded potatoes, baked potatoes, and even stuffed peppers to use the rice.

3. Don’t forget the bread.

Bread products are filling and can be purchased for just pennies per serving. Grab some boxed bread mixes while they are on sale, or grab a few fresh loaves closer to the holiday. If you find a great deal on bread now, don’t forget you can always save it or use it as croutons. You can also visit day old bread stores to get some real deals.

4. Use in season produce.

Use in season produce items to make your salads and side dishes. Some examples would be squash dishes, potatoes, apples, and grapes. In many areas these items are in season and so they will be at their lowest prices of the year. Just find creative ways to use them and make them part of your delicious meal.

5. Search out coupons.

Start scouring your flyers now for coupons that are good on meat products, side dishes, dessert items and more. Clip them out as you see them and ask family to do the same. Match your coupons with store sales so you can double up on your savings and maximize your dollar.

6. Ask guests to bring a favorite dessert.

One of the easiest ways to save some money and stress is to ask guests to bring a dessert. You will find that most are happy to do so. Some inexpensive dessert ideas can be jello parfaits, pudding parfaits, or fresh in-season fruit.

7. Don’t overlook the dollar store.

Dollar Stores are perfect for buying your roasting trays, tin foil, wax paper, and other cooking supplies. You can also find seasonings, side dish items, pasta, canned vegetables, and more. Head to your local dollar store and see what you might be able to use.

If you are in charge of Thanksgiving dinner this year, don’t see dollar signs just yet. Give these tips a try and see how frugal your feast can be.

What are your best savings tips for a frugal Thanksgiving dinner?  Share them in the comments!

7 Ways to Decorate Your Walls on a Budget

7 Ways to Decorate Your Walls on a Budget

7 Ways to Decorate Your Walls on a Budget

Are you looking to add some wow to your walls on a budget? Well the good news is, there are plenty of ways to add a pop of color, texture, and fun to your walls without spending a lot of cash. Take a peek below at 7 ways to decorate your walls on a budget so you can get the look you want while still keeping some cash on hand!

1. Peel and stick decals.

Peel and stick decals won’t harm your walls or paint and are easy to apply. You can find them at dollar stores, and even discount and craft stores. Choose a pattern you like, quote, or bold graphic and simply peel and stick for some instant décor.

2. Pretty plates.

Head to the thrift store and find a collection of pretty plates you like. Look for different sizes and colors. Find some plate hangers (sold at most discount stores) and attach to each plate. Then simply arrange in a collage pattern on your wall.

3. Frame collage.

Gather some picture frames from garage sales and thrift stores. Remove the inserts. Spray paint the frames in a variety of colors and hang on the wall in a collage fashion. It is like instant wall art that anyone can afford!

4. Old architecture.

If you love a vintage flare, try hanging an old window, old piece of fencing, old lattice work, or other vintage architecture pieces from your wall. It offers a rustic, vintage look and these are pieces you can find at most yard sales or even on the side of the road.

5. Hang a chair.

Find a colorful, lightweight chair and hang it from your wall. You can then use it as a shelf and it also doubles as an excellent conversation piece!

6. Stamps and stencils.

Craft stores offer a variety of stamps and stencils perfect for making walls pop. Kids especially might like the fun designs, so give these a try on an accent wall or small bathroom. Even if you aren’t artsy, they are easy to use and you can get some excellent results.

7. Clotheslines.

Run a piece of twine from one end of the wall to the other. Secure with a screw. You can then hang your child’s artwork from the twine, securing it with rustic clothespins or even painted ones. This way, the décor is always changing!

Don’t live with drab walls; instead, give these tips for decorating your walls for less a try!

5 Ways to Save Money on Halloween Costumes

5 Ways to Save Money on Halloween Costumes

Saving money on Halloween costumes can be easy, you just need to know a few simple tricks. Take a look at these 5 ways to save money on Halloween costumes and get the fun looks you love for less.

With Halloween quickly approaching, you might be wondering how to save a little money on this year’s costumes. Saving money on Halloween costumes can be easy, you just need to know a few simple tricks. Take a look at these 5 ways to save money on Halloween costumes and get the fun looks you love for less.

1. Visit a local thrift store.

Thrift stores are perfect for finding cheap dress up items when crafting your own costumes. Find scarves, hats, gloves, fabric, dress up jewelry and other items perfect for creating the look you want. And since it is a thrift store, you never know what you might find. Be sure to stop in especially on 50% off days, and stop in often as inventory is always changing.

2. Comb your own closets.

Take a look in your own closet for items you might be able to use. This includes many of the items listed above such as hats, scarves, dresses, old wedding and prom items, make up, and other accessories. You might be surprised at what you already have on hand that is usable. If you are looking for an accessory that you don’t have, ask family and friends to comb their closets before you go out and buy new. They just might have what you are looking for!

3. Swap with friends.

Ask your friends what costumes from years past they might have on hand. This is a great way to get a new to you costume for your child. You can even swap old costumes your children don’t wear anymore with friends for their old costumes. That way, you can get rid of items while getting some new to you items.

4. Visit your local dollar store.

Your local dollar store will have all sorts of accessories that can lend a hand to homemade costumes. Look for princess crowns, magic wands, police badges, face paint, costume reflectors, glow sticks, candy bags, and other items perfect for making your costume a hit! For just a buck, the price on these accessories is right!

5. Visit a consignment shop.

Check out local consignment shops for used costumes. Many consignment shops carry children’s costumes during the fall season, so you can often find one at a great price. If you want, you can even take some of your old costumes in for cash. This will help free up some funds for this year’s costumes. Call your local consignment shop and ask if they will be carrying Halloween costumes this season.

Keep these 5 tips for saving money on Halloween costumes on hand and you will see how easy it can be to create the perfect Halloween costume for less.

What are your most favourite thrifty Halloween costumes?

101 Ways To Save On Everyday Purchases

101 Ways To Save Money On Everyday Purchases

From the laundry detergent you use, to the gifts you wrap and place under the tree, here are 101 Ways To Save Money On Everyday Purchases!  Sometimes it means doing a bit of extra work, and other times it is as simple as printing a coupon.  These tips will help you to always get the best deal, and still have the things you need and want.

101 Ways To Save Money On Everyday Purchases

  1. Clip coupons
  2. Buy sale priced items
  3. Always check the clearance racks
  4. Buy the generic brand instead of name brand
  5. Buy items in bulk for lower price per unit
  6. Shop at club stores for better prices per unit
  7. Buy meat direct from the farm
  8. Make your own laundry products (Homemade Dryer Sheets)
  9. Grow your own produce
  10. Raise your own chickens
  11. Get organized to save big
  12. Use a store rewards card
  13. Use online email subscription rewards
  14. Use senior citizen discounts
  15. Use student discounts
  16. Sign up for birthday freebies
  17. Buy items that have rebates available
  18. Roll down the windows and turn off the AC in the car
  19. Share meals when eating out
  20. Shop at thrift stores
  21. Shop post holiday sales for school supplies, party supplies, kids dress up and holiday themed items
  22. Trade kids clothing in good condition with friends and family that have items in larger sizes
  23. Make your own homemade cleaning supplies
  24. Use cloth instead of paper for napkins, cleaning and even diapers or wipes
  25. Skip the coffee shop and make your own at home
  26. Get discounts on appliances when they are dinged, dented or cosmetically damaged
  27. Use social media to get discounts by tweeting, sharing or emailing
  28. Become a loyal customer and receive rewards
  29. Negotiate for service oriented things like automotive repairs, appliance service or even roofing on your home by getting estimates from several people and asking your choice to give you the same price as other bidders
  30. Compare prices for home insurance to get the best price
  31. Shop the manager’s special deals for meat at your grocery store
  32. Buy clearance produce in bulk then prep and freeze for later
  33. Make your own homemade spice mixes for taco seasoning, ranch dip and more
  34. Make your own flavored water with fresh fruit
  35. Shop off season for better deals on clothing
  36. Buy last year’s model of electronics to save money
  37. Buy gift cards when they are on sale or offering extra gift cards with purchase for “free” money
  38. Shop eBay for everything from electronics to kids clothes
  39. Shop Craigslist/Kijiji for books, DVD’s, electronics, clothing and furniture at great prices
  40. Buy the furniture with blemishes for better prices
  41. Shop outlet stores and websites for deals on name brand items
  42. Download the app for every store or brand you use regularly for extra deals
  43. Use coupon apps like Coupgon, Checkout 51 and Snap for immediate savings and rebates
  44. Buy larger sized clothing for kids so they last two seasons
  45. Check out books from the library instead of buying them
  46. Download free eBooks from Amazon, Goodreads or other eReader sites
  47. Cut your own hair instead of going to the salon
  48. Give yourself a manicure and pedicure
  49. Learn to sew your own basic dresses, shirts, pants and even blankets or pillow cases
  50. Stream movies through Netflix instead of going to the movies
  51. Subscribe to digital magazines instead of the mailed variety
  52. Turn in old appliances for credit
  53. Earn gift cards and rewards to pay for purchases through Swagbucks
  54. Use your medical insurance to pay for a gym membership (many policies cover this, you simply have to ask) US only
  55. Choose a Nurse Practitioner instead of an M.D. when paying out of pocket for quality treatment at a lower out of pocket price US only
  56. Use the no name prescriptions instead of the brand name prescriptions to pay less
  57. Ask to buy the display model of electronics and furniture for lower prices
  58. Use Priceline, Expedia or Trivago when planning vacations to get the lowest prices on flights, hotels and rental cars
  59. Shop drug stores like Shopper Drug Mart for makeup, cleaning products and household supplies using their rewards program to earn money toward future purchases
  60. Rent items you will only use once or twice like formal dresses, tuxedos or even small tools and equipment for home improvement projects
  61. Use a slow cooker to bake and cook items instead of the oven in the summer to lower utility costs
  62. Use a water filter instead of bottled water
  63. Drink water at restaurants instead of soft drinks or alcohol
  64. Take leftovers for lunch instead of going out with your coworkers
  65. Carpool to work with coworkers, your spouse or neighbors
  66. Sell your car and use public transportation if you live in or near the city
  67. Exercise at home using streamed videos or DVD’s instead of paying for a gym membership
  68. Drop the phone contract and use a pre-paid plan instead
  69. Drop your home phone and use only a cell phone
  70. Shop through Amazon to save
  71. Use a store or gas station reward card or credit card for extra gas rewards and discounts
  72. Rotate your tires regularly – it helps them last longer since they won’t be wearing more in one area than another
  73. Complete surveys on the back of receipts for future discounts
  74. Make your own scented bath products using essential oils, coconut oil, Shea butter, sugar and Epsom salts for various scrubs, butters and washes
  75. Shop club stores for bulk packages of towels, washcloths and hand towels for super low rates
  76. Shop dollar stores for books, crayons, coloring books, puzzles, candy and even craft supplies at half or more off regular prices
  77. Take outgrown or unwanted clothing to consignment shops
  78. Make your own bread mix, pancake mix, brownie mix or cookie mixes
  79. Skip kids meals and order a la carte for lower priced food for kids
  80. Watch Youtube videos to learn new dances, makeup techniques or even how to market your business instead of paying for pricey classes
  81. Use conditioner as shave gel (cheap and works great!)
  82. Stock up on select items during seasonal sales: Baking supplies during holiday events, turkey during Thanksgiving sales, hamburger and steaks during summer BBQ events, condiments during the summer and so on
  83. Take advantage of free samples on new products, they often come with coupons. Check websites and social media for freebies
  84. Email or snail mail to companies of brands you like to ask for free products or coupons (many will send you at least one coupon for a free item)
  85. Use discount nights for local events, fairs or carnivals
  86. Use CAA discounts for hotel rooms, rental cars, movie tickets, bookstores and even coffee houses
  87. Shop the butcher counter right before store closing for deals on meats
  88. Shop the local bread closeout store – many locations have a bread company closeout store with breads, cakes, cookies and other treats at lower than average costs
  89. Shop the grocery store’s clearance racks for deals on bread, produce, medicine, hair care and more
  90. Order your contact lenses online
  91. Shop your local farmers market for produce that will last longer because it’s fresher
  92. Buy used appliances from local rent to own locations for lower prices with a warranty
  93. Shop on lower shelves for better prices – popular items are often placed at eye level and priced higher
  94. Measure price per unit, ounce or quantity for best prices
  95. Recycle aluminum cans and glass to get back money you paid for them
  96. Mow your own grass and handle lawn care needs instead of paying for a service
  97. Use daily deal sites like Groupon, WagJag and more to save on entertainment, services and more!
  98. Go to matinées instead of later showings for cheaper movie ticket prices
  99. Attend high school and college plays instead of professional productions for fun without the cost
  100. Change your own oil at home instead of taking to an oil lube center
  101. Become a mystery shopper to get reimbursed for eating out and auto maintenance

I’m sure there are many other ways to save that we could add to the list. What are your favorite ways to save?


These ways to save on everyday purchases are all about thinking outside the box.  Rather than accepting the price of everything, evaluate and see how you can save by making it yourself, or waiting for a coupon or sale.

52 Ways To Save: Look for the Free Stuff

Every Monday in 2015, I’ll be sharing a different idea to help you save money! Add all of these tips to your frugal repertoire and you’ll be able to save a lot of money this year! I hope you’ll gather a few new ideas or at least some inspiration from this series.

Look for the Free Stuff to Save

Today’s post is coming at you because I scored a couple of great baby items this weekend. They were great deals because they were FREE!  Mostly because I was online at the right time.

I’m a part of a few Facebook buy & sell groups (I love, love buying and selling this way) and I happened to be browsing one group at the right time. (I tend to browse when I’m selling stuff.) Anyways, someone was offering a baby swing and a bouncy/vibrating chair for free to the first person to come by her garage sale. I happened to be on my way out the door anyways so I just changed my direction. I was first to the loot so I loaded up the car. Score!

While many of you may not be a part of these buy & sell groups, you can still nab free stuff if you look, and ask.

One of my favorite ways to get “free” things is by borrowing something I need. I particularly like this technique because I always give the item back once I’m finished, and it doesn’t take up any precious storage space! I always accept hand-me-downs, unless I really don’t need the items.

Another way to grab free stuff is by watching the curbs! My Mom snapped up a baby chair and a playpen in good condition one day while she was driving past a storage centre. She’s also found free walnuts because of a sign by a tree.

So, that’s my tip for the week!  Always be on the look out for free stuff. You’ll save big!

Have you scored any freebies? How and what did you get? Let us know!

See the other articles in this series, here.

52 Ways To Save: Become a One Car Family

Every Monday in 2015, I’ll be sharing a different idea to help you save money! Add all of these tips to your frugal repertoire and you’ll be able to save a lot of money this year! I hope you’ll gather a few new ideas or at least some inspiration from this series.  

Become a One Car Family

Become a one car family to Save Big! We're a one car family in the winter and I estimate we save at least $500. Imagine the savings if you were to do it year round!

I feel a bit like a hypocrite writing today’s post, because I would find it very challenging to become a one car family, but I think if you can do it, you’d save a ton of cash!

Since having my daughter, I have found I have to get out of the house at least once a day. For both of our sanities. :) We don’t always hop in the car, but quite often we do. I also don’t like the idea of being stranded at home in the event of an emergency. However, my husband usually doesn’t work full time in the winter, so we sell his car. (and earn a bit of extra money because we bought a cheap car that we can fix up a bit.) Then once he’s back to work full time, we buy another cheap car that we can sell once more.  That really works for us. Once in a while we do need two cars in the winter, but we have amazing family members who will lend their vehicle or pick us up if need be.

I estimate by being a one car family for even only the winter months, we’re saving at least $500. That could be significant savings if we were to do it year round!

Becoming a one car family means there will most likely be some sacrifices and changes that have to take place. More thought and effort will have to be put into organizing how everyone will get to where they need to be. In my mind, I think it would be easier to be a one car family in a big city because I imagine public transportation would be quite efficient.  Meaning, you can most likely catch a bus or train to anywhere you need to be. (We live in a smaller city so it’s harder to grab a bus to the more rural places.)

Here are some transportation ideas aside from a second car:

  • Walk
  • Ride a Bike
  • Use Public Transportation
  • Carpool
  • Buy a Moped

Are you a one car family? If so, tell us your tips and secrets for making it work!

See the other articles in this series, here.