Top Ten Ways we Save Money

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This is the first time, I have joined  Top Ten Tuesday….and I wanted to share some ways we have cut our budget in our home.  Like many, the cost of gas and other necessities have increased….but, the income has not.  So, we have made adjustments in our home…that have really made some huge impacts and have helped a LOT!

1)  We keep it a little warm in the summer (83) and a little chilly in the winter (68).  (This saved us BIG time this summer, as our electricla bill for our 2200 sft home did not go above $175

2)  We use cloth napkins….

3)  I do not purchase trash bags.  We use the bags from the grocery store for our trash bags

4)  I do not purchase books before I ask friends and others if they have a copy….all of these books were given to us by friends who no longer needed them!!

5 and 6:  I reuse / re-purpose a LOT of things. The crate was originally used to bring Mason Jars to us for freezing…and I was hunting around the garage for SOMETHING to hold our winter blankets…and thought…OH, that would be cute!  The two quilts in the very bottom of the crate (left/right) were quilts my Grandmother made when my Dad was a very little boy…from old clothing and scraps…

7.   We buy our grains in bulk.  This 40lb bucket of organic brown rice was $60….one small bag (16oz) at the grocery store is $7…That’s a LOT of saving!

8.  We make our own soap….healthier and overall cost savings

9 and 10)  We bake our own bread.  One 2.5lb loaf of organic bread (from freshly milled wheat) is $1.25.  Why is this number 10?  This summer, I moved the Zojirushi (purchased used from a family moving to Germany) to the bottom of our hall pantry…to keep it from heating up the house and to keep the southern humidity from killing the second rise….  Speaking of purchasing USED….we try to find all things used and love hand me downs…so, I guess this makes number 11, too.  Most items we need are purchased at less than 50% cost of retail.

Have you linked up?  Let me know your link….and HOW do you Save Money?

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  1. Great list – and some good tips!! We are huge recyclers as well, and it’s quite amazing what we are able to re use when we are intentional about it!

    BTW – this is my first time linking up with Top 10 too!!

  2. We do alot of those same things! It is amazing what adjusting the thermostat a little bit can do for the bills!

    • I know…last summer, I kept it around 79, and I thought we would go nuts with it being around 84. It was not the most comfy…but, when it was 100 outside….it seemed cooler after walking out!

  3. I love this!!! We are just embarking on our quest to make all of our own food and toiletries and house cleaning items, so this is so helpful! Thank you!

    • Becky, It’s a new adventure, that’s for sure! I haven’t started making laundry detergent because I have a friend who started her own business and I like supporting her! You’ll have to share your recipes and successes….and well…you know, the messes, too!

  4. Great ideas. The heat and AC are huge money savers. We set our heat at 68. I prefer it cooler and to wear a sweater or sweatshirt, anyway. The AC we weren’t as frugal with, but our upstairs gets stifling in the summer. We began making our own laundry detergent this summer and that’s also a big saver. Budgeting our food expenses is a work in progress.

    • Robin…I know what you mean about the upstairs. MY Dd’s room is above the garage and the sun comes up on her side of the house….so, her room is the warmest…but, she is a little trooper and we find ways to help cool it off!! Oh, I can’t wait to hear about your laundry detergent!!!

  5. Great post! Maybe I should link up???
    I need to try to get our electric bill down. I can deal with the hot (not so much the cold) but my hubby cannot. Because he is diabetic he sweats a lot and get overheated. Love the quilt. I have been saving scraps of fabric from memorable items for years just haven’t put our quilt together yet (I even have a scrap of of mine and Bens baby blankets). Once we are back on top I plan to start buying some bulk again. I have been on the search for an inexpensive bread maker let me know if you come across any deals. So when are you going to have a soap making party so you can teach us???

    • I will keep an eye out for you Kathy…it’s been a blessing for us and I did not make those quilts…I’m not a seamstress and seem to be way too aggravated with a sewing machine…which saddens me because it was my Grandmother’s best friend!Ok…we def need to have a soap making party soon…we were just asked about that last night… let me talk with DH and see what we can come up with!

  6. I need to take your tip on upping/ downing the ac. You don’t EVEN want to know what our electric bill was last month. Yikes. We keep it on 78 in the summer but that’s still too much.

    • April, we kept ours at 78 last year…but, if the kids and I want to drive anywhere, we have to have a little gas money….hence, a little discomfort at home!

  7. Great tips! I do a lot of the same things, except I am very bad at buying books! I think I’m addicted to them :)

  8. It’s our first Top Ten too!!! And, I just made my first ever loaf of bread last night…I hope I NEVER spend money on store-bought bread again!! And now, I’ve used entirely too many exclamation points! Thanks for sharing. I’m off to go bump up our thermostat a few degrees (83? wow!)

  9. Great useful and do-able list! We follow close to your #1, as well. And we’re making the switch to cloth napkins soon. (I think that small choice will help in many ways!)

    We made our own bread when I was a kid, and I’d love to do that again. We go through quite a bit of bread in a short time! Perhaps I’ll ask for a bread machine as a gift one year…

    I make my own household cleaners with vinegar and baking soda, too. It definitely helps save money and is safer around kids!

    Thanks for sharing your ideas!

  10. Jen @ BigBinder says:

    These are fantastic. The first couple I was like, oh, yeah… I do those too, but by the time we got to making your own soap you and lapped me. So, how do you make your soap??

  11. Hahah…Yes, Jenn and those chickens…I want chickens…can’t have chickens here, though…. but, yep, we make soap. I will find the link with our recipe (we found online) and I’ll email it to you! I am sure you have tons of fun with Jenn!!! Will you be at Blissdom?