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cynthia mosher 01-23-2013 05:11 AM

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Contest RulesSponsored by:


Are you really good at saving money and cutting costs? Do you have some tried and true tips for frugality that will help others? Post your best tip to this thread and you could win an Organic Cotton Diaper Kit from Bummis!

Contest Rules

There are two ways to enter the contest:

  • Post your best frugal tip along with a picture, if you have one. Pictures are not required but may give your entry more weight in judging and winning votes. You may post more than one tip but each tip must posted separately in a new post.
  • "Like" Mothering and Bummis on Facebook and share the contest post via Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest. Once you have "liked" and shared please post to the thread to let us know that you did. You may participate in this way without posting a tip.
  • All entrants should read the Terms and Conditions of the contest.




We have three Organic Cotton Diaper Kits from Bummis to give away!


Bummis Organic Cotton Diaper Kit will get your baby into cloth diapers right away and make it easy too!  It’s 24 cozy cotton diaper changes and some really great accessories: flushable AND reusable liners, a hanging diaper pail, and instructions that make it all a breeze. But it’s also much more than a kit of diapers, because the products we create reflect our values - from fiber to finished product.  Whether made here or sourced with integrity, our products are the fruit of our dreams of a more sustainable way of living, for your babies and ours. (The winners can choose if they want a baby or infant kit.)


We will award a First and Second Place prize based on judging and community votes (factors for winning explained below).


The Third prize will be by giveaway drawing from among those who shared the contest and "liked" Mothering and Bummis on Facebook.



All tips will be reviewed by Mothering's administration and editorial team. The entries will be judged according to the "eligible entries" rules and the following equally weighted factors: number of thumbs up for the tip, and number of eligible entries posted by the entrant to the thread. The decisions of the judges will be final. A tip must not have been posted to the contest thread by another entrant.


Please read the Terms and Conditions of this contest. The contest will begin Wednesday, January 23, 2013 and will end at midnight February 5, 2013.


Be sure to share the contest with your family and friends so they can vote for your entry!

LoveOurBabies 01-23-2013 07:43 AM

My top frugal tip would be reduce, re-use, recycle. I've done budgets, coupon clipping, shopping when sales are on only etc, but nothing stands out to me more than the three R's.


Reduce what you purchase

Re-use what you have until it is no longer usable for that particular function

Then.. Recycle it into something else (aim for zero waste in every category)


An example would be clothing:

-Reduce the clothes you purchase to only what is necessary for your lifestyle and climate

-Re-use the clothes you have until they are no longer usable as clothing (this includes doing things such as mending or tie-dying to disguise heavy stains in children's clothing)

-Recycle the unusable clothing into scrap fabric for cleaning rags, fabric bags, rag dolls, patchwork blankets etc, thus saving the money on what would have otherwise been spent for these items. Whether they be purchased brand new or second hand, it's still $.. Not to mention resources.

I would post a picture of my DS (who would love some cloth diapers for his cute little bum lol.gif as we recently decided to transition from disposables to cloth) but I don't have any on my comp. Hope my tip serves others well. heartbeat.gif

LoveOurBabies 01-23-2013 08:32 AM

My 2nd frugal tip would be to get creative with your stuff at home and regularly re-evaluate your need for certain items. You would be surprised at how you can come up with a frugal alternative for almost anything you think you "need".


Some recent changes I made were:

-Instead of throwing stamped envelopes into the bin, I save them and re-use them for note paper (shopping lists, jotting down numbers etc). No longer need to buy notepads or notebooks.


-DS has just started to get into banging on to toys (just about anything really), so instead of purchasing a specific toddler 'banging' toy, I turned a SS pot upside down and gave him a wooden spoon. $ saved, resources saved and no extra clutter when this phase is over.


-We are returning the shredder we borrowed from work (we have had it here long enough) and instead of purchasing one of our own, we are going to do the frugal thing and use scissors to cut up all the personal information. We don't need to buy a shredder, store a shredder or use any extra electricity now.


-Using leaves that have fallen to the ground and flowers we have dried and pressed ourselves in our art and craft adventures (instead of foam decorations/stickers/cut-outs). It's environmentally friendly because it's all biodegradable, it's non-toxic, it's free and it teaches a skill (flower pressing).


-Buying pants in a size up (length wise) for my DD instead of sticking to the recommended size. I hem the bottom of the pants so that they fit perfectly for her height now and release the hem in increments as she grows in height. A $5 pair of pants have lasted one year and will last another 2 at least. They will also be passed down to her sister as she completely outgrows them. I now also try to line dry as much as possible to extend the lifespan of the clothing.


That's all I can think of for now! It's 3am and I need to sleepdizzy.gif

Ethelpea 01-23-2013 09:20 AM

Almost Free Homemade Vegetable Broth


Here is my frugal all your vegetable scraps  for the week/month -  whatever - in freezer bags.  When you have enough scraps, add them to a pot of water, season and make some homemade and flavorful vegetable broth.  After simmering for a while and before you transfer to mason jars for storage, strain out the vegetables.

CCoello 01-23-2013 10:13 AM

Fashion or Function?


Whenever I'm tempted to buy new things - and that happens all the time! - I ask myself if I'm motivated by fashion or function.


When it's just fashion, I see if I can try and remodel the things I do have - a little paint, decoupage, a bleach design on fabric. Beauty is important in life, but you don't need to buy new to get it.

When it's function, I ask myself how necessary the new function is. Can I buy a needed item used? Get creative with what we already have?


Just this kind of critical thinking helps me limit extraneous purchases, live within my means, and be happy with what I have.

ladylukk 01-23-2013 11:48 AM

My best frugal tip is definitely cloth diapering our two little men. After spending almost $80+ a month with disposables we have saved thousands switching to reusable cloth diapers and cloth wipes. It makes my husband and I feel good keeping all of that trash out of the landfills and to also save money in the process. We look forward to growing our family and continuing to cloth diaper.

Liked and Shared smile.gif

Liliahsmom 01-23-2013 11:49 AM

Hi. I'm sorry. I'm not good at writing things. Though I have ideas on how to be frugal, I'm not a guru at it. There are other moms out there that deserve the prize for this talent. I, however, would love to start clothe diapering but am having a hard time finding a place to start. For that purpose I would love to win this prize. Thank you.

BrittBBT 01-23-2013 11:50 AM

My frugal tip is to not buy a bunch of useless baby gear! We did borrow 2 swings and a playpen when our twins were born... but with our littlest guy, we only bought a swing when he was getting so heavy that wearing him was killing my back. He outgrew it soon after, but that's OK. We co-sleep- so no crib to buy. We breastfeed- no bottles/formula.


Having a baby doesn't have to cost a lot.

ladylukk 01-23-2013 11:51 AM

Our best frugal tip for families would have to be making your own baby food. I jar or freeze our baby food in bulk so that we never once have to purchase a jar of baby food. I like to also make a point of using produce that is in season so that we have fresh nutritiously packed baby food all year long. Jarring especially comes in handy when we go on vacation! The picture below was enough baby food to last us 2 weeks on vacation at the lake. Saving money and keeping green!

Liked & Shared! smile.gif

karalynn918 01-23-2013 11:59 AM

Make your own household cleaner! A bottle of vinegar goes a long way and is safer around children.

karalynn918 01-23-2013 12:01 PM

Breastfeed! Saves on doctor visits, formula cost, and household waste!

caiesmommy 01-23-2013 12:05 PM



My biggest "frugal" tip is raising good children who are grateful in general.


I teach my children between "wants and needs" daily. This goes with toys(we don't buy things that will break/not get played with and always buy toys that will get use from more then 1 child). Works with clothes. We try and buy good quality clothes second hand that will last. Hoodies/t-shirts ect that are unisex so they can be passed along to the younger kids. And this ESPECIALLY works with food. We try not to waste food and work as a family to come up with frugal recipes and new ways to use leftovers so we don't waste food that other people would love to have. My kids are quick to catch themselves and us in a case of the wants. I love them for it joy.gif


I'm pregnant with my 4th child and it's quite a surprise. So much so that I gave away my cloth diapers and could certainly use a new start up batch.

lovemylab 01-23-2013 12:11 PM

My tip is to be a home body! It is expensive to eat dinners out so make everything by scratch. Also enjoy the nature around you, that is generally free, ie go for nature hikes.

starfrances 01-23-2013 12:23 PM

Liked and shared!

sgsnyder 01-23-2013 12:50 PM

Not sure if I'm doing this right - but I liked and shared!

Wish I had a great tip to share, but I've given up thinking until baby's born - or maybe 'til she's grown up. wink1.gif

We like to make extra supper and pack it for lunches... carry teabags and our own travel mugs so we don't have to pay for drinks... we barter, swap, and buy secondhand whenever possible... (our current cloth diapers are pre-owned! But we'd love some infant size...) and generally try to live "softly."

I appreciate all of the other tips! Awesome!

Rllawson 01-23-2013 12:59 PM

Make your own baby food! Just steam and purée a batch whatever is in season, pour into an ice cube tray and freeze. Once frozen, pop them into a gallon freezer bag or airtight container. They're ready to go whenever you need them.

Rllawson 01-23-2013 12:59 PM

Liked and shared!

patternfall 01-23-2013 01:27 PM

Liked and shared.


I made my own baby food. Most fruits are really easy. After making my own applesauce, the kids won't eat store-bought. The same is true for cupcakes, as well. Not only do I save money, but I know what all the ingredients are and that there are no "surprises" to be found.

fmorris28 01-23-2013 01:32 PM

What has worked for me is to make on mye own the things I need. I make mye own homemade starch for ironing clothes with cornstarch and water. I make my own laundry soap wash.gif (laundry bar, borax, and washing soda.) and try to hang dry clothes as much as possible hang.gif I also make mye own cleaning solution (white vinegar is great and a bit of lemon). Whenever we leave the house we unplug all appliances and powerstrips (this has cut back on our energy cost greatly! im saving a little over $100 a month from what I was paying last year for power!) Any leftover food goes into stews, soups, and stir-frys so we dont do too much wasting. I even have a recipie for an at home chemical peel using all natural ingredients you can find right in your house! I also make specific and detailed grocery lists and stick to them when shopping. I combine coupons with in-store sales to get the maximum savings, and sometimes things end up free! I also check our city's website for events and activities being held for no cost! There's quite a bit here to do free of charge! At this moment we are still TTC, but I have plans to breastfeed and plan to use cloth nappies as well!cd.gif Living frugally is easier than one thinks. I personally get a thrill being able to make a lot of the things I NEED on mye own and not have to purchase. Sewing and mending clothes at home has also cut back on my clothes shopping! So many great things for frugal living!

vivalavegan 01-23-2013 01:33 PM

A great tip for being frugal is to make your own laundry detergent. For natural minded mommies like myself; great smelling, environmentally friendly detergents could put a dent in the bank. All you need is a bar of Fels Naptha (or any unscented bar soap), some borax, and washing soda. Grate the bar soap and melt it on the stove top, then add it to a bucket with 1c. each borax and washing soda, then add water. Easy and lasts about 6 months! You can also add some drops of your favorite essential oils to give it a nice scent.

earthmoma 01-23-2013 01:49 PM

my tip would be to plant a garden! you can start things from seed or buy grown baby plants. We live in ohio and have the following things in our freezer or pantry from our garden: a yrs of spagetti sauce, strawberry jelly, frozen fruits for baking, sweet corn,peas,carrots,peppers,squash,hot sauceotonions,green beans,beans,oinons,potatos spices, herbs and asparagus. We just got our last batch of spinach & salad greens a couple days ago, the cold weather has killed them off. You also get all the fresh produce you get in season(love garden salsa!). Everything you grow is also organic and ate at its peak. This is a great family project. kids would love to pick their own pumpkin! We could never afford to eat the way we do with our garden.

froese family 01-23-2013 02:00 PM

Make your own jam! It is so easy!!!!

For the cost of only a few jars of jam purchased at the store (mostly to cover the cost of buying jars, if you are starting out) I can make lots of jars of fresh jam!  I can control how much sugar is in the jam, awesome!  

If you make jam when the fruit is in season it can be super cheap!!! But even if you buy frozen fruit when it is on sale it is still an awesome deal!

Now that my family has tasted homemade jam we will never go back to store bought!!


SayingGrace 01-23-2013 02:04 PM

My favorite tip that I've started using in the past year is to save butter wrappers. Pop the empty wrapper into a bag or container and store in the fridge. When you need to grease a pan for cooking or baking pull one of the wrappers out and grease away. Saves you time and money and you can reuse something you would normally throw away. Enjoy!

jillynn 01-23-2013 02:04 PM

I have a tip for all of us frugal women that love to save on everything that we forget to treat ourselves a little.  

Ever want spa treated skin?  Well, if you've got any essential oils hanging around that are suitable for skin use such as oils you may be already adding to your homemade wipe solutions, this one's easy.

Add a few drops to a small container of sea salt.  Add a carrier oil such as olive oil or grapeseed oil and mix.  

Viola!  You've just made a jar of scented (and healing) scrubbing salts that typically cost $20-30 from any retailer.

SayingGrace 01-23-2013 02:07 PM

Like both and shared!

froese family 01-23-2013 02:10 PM

another great frugal tip is LINE DRY your clothes!

We use cloth diapers (another wonderful $ saver) and I hang them out to dry whenever I can along with all our other clothes.

I hang them out and let the sun do the rest!  So easy and simple!

We moved into a new house and the first thing I did outside was to put up a clothes line! 


littlestferrari 01-23-2013 02:18 PM



Well I'm a first time mom and expecting in 2 months, so I don't have any true wisdom to pass on (which is why I liked both the Mothering FB page as well as Bummis' FB page...which are made in Montreal where I live!! I also tweeted the contest several times!), but I do know that in the long-run, cloth diapering is SUCH a money-saver! That + breastfeeding + making our very own cloth carriers and swaddling blankets have been some of our tactics so far....and lots of hand me downs from cousins!


My husband and I live a very small footprint lifestyle (even my own business, which is is eco-friendly!) that there's no other way than CD for us...I've been having such a fun time slowly building up my collection, and this kit would be a lifesaver!


I'm happy to be part of this awesome community and look forward to getting to know the forums a little better!




littlestferrari 01-23-2013 02:23 PM

...but if you want my general frugality tip, it would be...




So simple by stocking up and freezing all you need in freezer bags. Cut up banana, berries, blend and freeze kale  and/or spinach in ice cubes (add a little water to them while blending) and keep on hand. Then, just add them to your blender with some water (or any kind of milk for a very rich smoothie) or juice, and customize with your favourite protein, or some coconut oil (fats are very important while breastfeeding, I hear) and voila!

You've got your fancy $10 smoothie for pennies!

lace 01-23-2013 02:27 PM

Some of my best frugal tips:


  • Buy dry beans instead of canned.  Prep the whole bag by soaking and then cooking till slightly tender.  Freeze what you don't want to use right away and you have beans ready for when you need them just like canned but so much better.  They save you lots of money.

lace 01-23-2013 02:27 PM

Plant a garden in the summer.  You'll have fresh vegetables you can freeze/can/store for the winter.

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