Monday, October 19, 2009

Baby steps

I have been trying to be more fiscally responsible. It is so hard reversing horrible spending habits. I struggle every day. EVERY DAY. However, I have implemented a few new money saving ideas.

First, I have been menu planning. Although I thought this would be a hassle, it is actually a great and easy way to save money. By planning our meals ahead of time, I am able to make detailed and thorough grocery lists. This saves me the hassle of making repeat trips to the grocery store. I don't know if you're like me, but I cannot make it out of the grocery store without spending at least $40, regardless of how much food I have at home. Also, I no longer lament that we have nothing to make, while calling the local pizza delivery place. We do still eat out once a week, but this is a huge improvement over our former habits. We were known to eat out 3 or 4 times per week. Honestly, I don't even miss eating out.

Second, we have stopped buying paper towels. I would like to claim that we did this for the environment, but sadly, it was a strictly budget based decision. We were going through a ton of paper towels. A TON. I noticed that I used them multiple times per day to clean highchair trays and sticky fingers and counter tops. I even used them to dry my hands. It was out of control. We were buying a pack every week. So finally, I decided to stop buying them all together. Instead, I have been using wash rags to clean the kitchen. I miss my paper towels.

Finally, we have started buying food in bulk. Whole Foods will give you a 10% discount when you buy a case of anything. Every week or two we buy a case of something we use frequently - like beans or diced tomatoes or pasta. We have a lot of food stored down in our basement, but it makes me feel good knowing that we saved money by buying in bulk. Also, I no longer have to think about whether or not we have beans. Trust me - we have them.

I am taking baby steps, but I finally feel like we are moving in the right direction. We are saving a little more money every month, and some day we might actually pay off our credit card. What have you been doing to save money?

12 comments:

Eva said...

According to my husband I don't save money at all.

Can you tell we had a fight about this last night?

Nicole S. said...

Not sure if your whole foods has this, but ours has a dry goods section where you pour out how much you want into a container and weigh it and pay by weight. So, you pay the bulk price, but you don't necessarily have to buy in bulk. I buy my nuts, rice, flour, oatmeal, beans (dry), quinoa, lentils, etc. and pay WAY less than I would if I bought the boxed version.

Didn't know about the 10% discount, though - thanks for sharing!!

Heather @ boy, girl, and a pug said...

Well, you know how much I enjoy spending money and saving is very hard for me. We do use cloth diapers and cloth wipes. Have you thought about cloth wipes? I know cloth diapers aren't for you, but wipes aren't bad. Let's see, I also plan meals ahead and sometimes I even make them up and freeze them. I have been making a lot of Ella's pants and then just buying plain shirts to match. Eventually I will applique or embrodier on the shirts...eventually! I am also going to sell all of our baby's clothes at a consignment sale. Apparently that is a good way to MAKE money! Who knew:)

Mom said...

We just put a stop to the ridiculous amount of eating out we do. We're trying to keep it to twice a month or less right now, it used to be like you - 3-4 times a week. Ridiculous. Since we both work out of the home it was even work - sometimes lunch and then dinner! UGH. So expensive.

We're making sure to eat leftovers and I am trying to cook at home more often. We aren't great at meal planning yet but getting better by necessity. And we don't buy much junk food anymore.

Alicia W. said...

Good for you! You go with your budget saving self. Teach me! :)

Just Jiff said...

Hmmm... not sure what I do to save money right now. I'm doing well to cook dinner at night so we'll see how my menu planning goes. :)

TEACHBROECK said...

Love all your ideas...I use them too....coupons baby...it is addicting! I saved 18 bucks last week =) I can't seem to give up Clorox wipes though...

Amanda said...

Every little helps!

amanda said...

wow honey good for you!!

i wish i had been saving money lately but instead i have been spending. guess that's what bday's do to a mama :)

here's to next month!

Mama Kalila said...

Understood... I wasn't taught to budget or anything and its not easy.

I love my menu planning too.. I recommend it highly to everyone lol. I've been so bad about it since I got pg though and about to start back up.

Paper towels - sigh... We buy them in bulk at Sams but I want to cut them out... I'm just bad about it. We have lots of microfiber towels (buy in bulk and they're cheap) and those work wonders for cleaning up messes so I really have no excuse.

We buy some food in bulk, and other fresh.. one trip a week for that keeps the cost down and us from wasting food.

Baby steps are good though. Its why we use them to learn to walk lol.

Kate Coveny Hood said...

This is definitely hard for me...but I've started shopping at Costco whenever possible and More often than not, I put something back on the shelf at Target when I would have just thrown it in the cart in years past.

Clare said...

i am all about the menu planning too. mine is for budget, but also because the grocery store i like is over 20 minutes away and i won't just swing by. so i try and buy stuff for an entire week while i am there, and keep it under $150. it doesn't always happen, but i try:)