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Revamping our spending-need ideas

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
My husband and I are choosing to go through our budget and cut each place we can and are vowing to stick to things like not eating out, overspending etc. Heres what we have right now..

Cancel our cleaning lady and do it ourselves
Replace bulbs with energy efficient ones
Get movies from Lib and quit renting
Only go to the movie when we have accumulated enough pts at our grocery store to get free passes.
Start a coin jar and use that money when we cant take it and need to go out and grab fast food or do some sort of recreation.

I know these threads go around a lot but I love them and love the ideas. Another big spending place for us is groceries. We spend about 400/month for a family of four but that includes all diapers, wipes, shampoo, paper products, cleaning etc. Id like to get us down to 175/two weeks or 350 a month with NO going over but need some cheap meals (full recipies please)

We do get Wic and I do use cloth pads. There is no way my family will go to family clothe for those who would maybe suggest it.

Thanks for all your help. This group rocks.
post #2 of 9
I replace the bulbs with efficent ones only when they burn out, So its a continual work in progress.
Def do your own cleaning!
I never rent movies-I love the library, however sometimes the grocery store will give coupons on your reciept for free REDBOX (I never use them tho')

You def. can get your spending down at the grocery store, watch sales, coupon, check out www.afullcup.com, couponmom.com etc...

Cheap mealS loves homemade pizza night which basically is dayold french bread from the store, pizza sauce, cheese and any toppings you want from the fridge, bake at 350 until done and there is dinner. (cut the bread in 1/2 legnth wise) Dinner costs under $3 and there is leftovers for lunch and snack.- for 2 people.
post #3 of 9
I just moved, nad my new house has the smallest pantry you've ever seen. So, I'm having to get more creative with my grocery shopping. Stocking up for 6 months at a "buy it now" price isn't going to work anymore.

I *think* I can still save money by shopping the flyers, though. If beans are on sale this week, we'll have bean recipes. If tomatoes are on sale, we'll have tomato recipes. Stuff like that.

We'll see how it works out.
post #4 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by lovemore View Post
.....

Cancel our cleaning lady and do it ourselves

...

We do get Wic
.....
You qualify for Wic but have a cleaning lady? How does that happen?
post #5 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChristyMarie View Post
You qualify for Wic but have a cleaning lady? How does that happen?
http://www.fns.usda.gov/wic/howtoapp...guidelines.htm

WIC eligibility limits are actually higher than some think.
post #6 of 9
Thread Starter 
My husband is military so they actually only go off of his base pay and not his full income. Really they only account for about half. And we had a cleaning lady because it was our only "treat" or extra. We do without a lot of things such as tv, cell phones, haircuts etc..
post #7 of 9
As far as cutting grocery costs.....cut down on meat, increase beans/rice type meals, have soup once a week, make a real breakfast (oatmeal as opposed to cold cereal). Do you use coupons? I am a half hearted coupon user and I haven't paid more than 50 cents for toothpaste or shampoo in years. You CAN find coupons for real food, they just aren't as plentiful as coupons for junky food.

Try cleaning with vinegar/baking soda and rags instead of commercial products and paper towels. I clean once a month with commercial products--I just haven't figured out how to get the toilet really clean without a chemical cleaner.

About a year ago, we switched to cloth napkins and dish cloths. I bought cloth napkins at a yard sale for next to nothing and 16 'bar mops' at Costco for $9. I do have a roll of paper towels on hand for really gross stuff--dog barf anyone?--and draining greasy bacon but a roll lasts us about 6 months.

HTH, sounds like you are on the right track!
post #8 of 9
Don't feel guilty about having a cleaning lady. Mama's need help sometimes, and if that is your splurge, then that is fine!!!
post #9 of 9
If you have a zoo or aquarium or the like nearby, you may be able to get memberships with your military discount. Our zoo is always putting on some kind of event for kids. We go about once a month or so and take our own drinks and snacks.

Definitely follow grocery store fliers and plan meals around the sale items. I consistently get prices much cheaper than at the commissary by pairing a sale with coupons. There are some great blogs like Money Saving Mom and Krazy Coupon Lady that do the work for you by scouring the ads and finding the rock bottom deals and posting them.
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