Lets do tips to help save money!

Discussion in 'Random Ramblings' started by HennysMom, Nov 7, 2008.

  1. HennysMom

    HennysMom Keeper of the Tiara

    Okay, this sprung from the other posters question on how much we spend on groceries a month - and people started posting what they did to save money every month - so naturally, the next thing to follow is what those things are [​IMG] Times are tight and we can all use tips/tricks to help save money each month for groceries, electric, clothing, gifts, etc.

    here's some of mine:

    I buy meats in bulk usually (like an entire side of NY Strip is $2.00 less a lb than pre-cut/packaged, just ask the butcher to cut it for you!) and use my food saver to package it myself. I do this with all my meats. Hubby and kids also eats game (I dont) and we food saver that too - lasts for at least 2 years or more that way.

    I make muffins and mini cakes out of boxed mixes vs. buying pre-pkged ones (you get alot more that way) and freeze them (someone else posted that too). I also do this with crackers, chips and homemade cookies (works great for lunches).

    Homemade granola is terrific and costs next to nothing to make (ie, think trailmix). Low fat and all natural - if you want to add mini M&M's for fun (or if you're a chocoholic like I am [​IMG] then by all means). MUCH CHEAPER than buying it from the store.

    Get on a budget with your electric or gas company. You'll always know what you're going to pay every month. Also - now is the time to winterize your home (weatherstripping, plastic, etc). You dont realize how drafty a house can be and how much energy goes out those old windows! The shrink wrap plastic comes 2 in a box for less than $7.00!

    If you're shopping online (I do all my Christmas/Birthday shopping this way) type in the name of the store in a search engine and then do "promo code" (like this "JCPENNEY PROMO CODE") - and look through all the different promotional codes out there. I shopped yesterday online and found a 25% off coupon valid online (that 99% of the time you wont find in the stores btw) and can be used on ANYTHING including clearance items! I got a $72.00 jacket on clearance marked down to $12.00 and got 25% more off of that plus free shipping! Couldnt do better in the store and I didnt have to leave my house! [​IMG] Most stores have them, you just have to search the different sites for them.

    Speaking of shopping - hit the clearance aisle FIRST - I always do. I just went today (booo! actually went to a store and hated it LOL) and I got 2 pairs of jeans (Seven7 and hydraulics ), 5 shirts, 1 dress jacket, 2 pairs of yoga pants and 2 matching jackets, and 1 wallet for $140.00 from Belks - I SAVED $370.00 however in shopping in the clearance aisle. One pair of jeans were 56.00 and I got them for $14.00!

    Use grocery coupons and hold onto them until your favorite grocery store is having their "Buy one Get one Free" sales - That is when you will save the most money on your items. Its even better if your grocery store doubles the value of the coupon amount (I know Giant Foods doubles up to .50 on most coupons).

    Someone in the other thread said they didnt/couldnt afford to buy veggies due to being so expensive: Grow a garden at home! You dont need land to do it - grow in pots if you dont have enough space (we used to do that in the subdivision we lived in). A small patio garden will suffice - or grow in above ground plots if you dont want to till. Its soooo much healthier to grow your own not to mention so much cheaper![​IMG]

    Also, then there is of course - chickens, we must not forget our lovely little girls - get lots and lots of chickens so you can have your own eggs!

    C'mon - there has to be other ideas out there! Lets have them [​IMG]
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2008
  2. wegotchickens

    wegotchickens DownSouth D'Uccles & Silkies

    Jul 5, 2007
    Sevier County, TN
    I always plan my route of what I need to do and where I'm going. Try to make it a loop to save gas costs. Then I clip and coupong for each place to the list so I have them when I need them.

    We already weatherstripped the house. We also lower the thermostat at night when we're all asleep and during the day. Then bump it back up when we're all up and moving. And even then it's not that high.

    We do the buying bulk, watching sales & clipping coupons. Also I learned to can and have done a lot of freezing this year.
  3. willowcol

    willowcol Songster

    Oct 10, 2008
    Macclesfield NC
    Turn down your hot water heater, try hanging out clothes or put shirts on hangers wet and hang to dry inside.
  4. BettyR

    BettyR Songster

    Mar 1, 2008
    Texas Gulf Coast
    Those are some great ideas!!! I especially like the ["promo code" (like this "JCPENNEY PROMO CODE")]...I didn't know about that...I'll check it out.

    We have a spring garden and because we live in a subtropical region we also have a fall garden as well. We grow most of our own veggies which we eat fresh, frozen and canned.

    We purchase a side of grass fed beef once a year.

    We live in an area where wild pigs are a big problem and they are fair game all year long; you don't even need a hunting license to harvest them... so that is free meat.

    We have one meatless meal each week.

    Since I'm retired and DH only works 4 days a week, we have cut back to just one car.

    I just thought I'd give you this recipe...it's just as easy as putting a box mix together and a lot cheaper. Everyone who has tried the cake loves it.

    Basic Yellow Cake

    2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour (do not sift the flour)
    1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
    3 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
    1-teaspoon salt
    1 1/4 cups milk
    Vegetable oil
    1 stick butter, softened
    1-tablespoon vanilla extract
    3 large eggs

    Preheat oven to 350°

    Cut wax paper to fit the bottom of (3) 9 x 1 1/2-inch round pans...or a 9x13" cake pan... or 24 cup cakes papers. Spray the pans with cooking spray, place the wax paper in the pans and spray the paper.

    In a large mixing bowl combine the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt, mixing well.

    Measure the 1-1/4 cups of milk in a 2 cup measuring cup...then add enough vegetable oil to bring the liquid up to 1-1/3 cups.

    Add the milk/vegetable oil mixture, butter and vanilla to the flour mixture and beat with an electric mixer on medium to medium-high speed for 2 minutes, scraping sides of bowl as needed.

    Add the eggs and continue beating an additional 2 minutes. Pour batter into prepared pans.

    Bake at 350° for 20 to 25 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted near center of cake comes out clean, or until cake springs back when touched lightly in the center.

    Cool cakes on wire racks for 15 minutes; remove from pans and cool completely.

    Frost as desired.


  5. HennysMom

    HennysMom Keeper of the Tiara

    I'm drooling.. that looks wonderful!

    I too bake homemade goodies but wish I could do it more often. Just made some homemade brownies the other night, its my 2nd recipe I've tried but...I just dont care for them. *sighs* Either they are too cakey or too gooey. I want ones that are in between, like Fairytale Brownies - anyone ever have those? They are delicious!

    *cutting and pasting that recipe* Now I"m going to make a cake this weekend! [​IMG]
  6. debilorrah

    debilorrah The Great Guru of Yap

    Invest in an electric blanket and lower your heat at night. Those blankets don't use very much energy and the lower temp on the heat will go down ALOT.
  7. I have WHAT in my yard?

    I have WHAT in my yard? Songster

    Jun 24, 2008
    Eggberg, PA
    Vent your drier inside the house during the winter! Don't worry about a system from Home Depot - you can do that ,, they're not that expensive, I just aim the vent into a large bowl of water to collect lint and deflect the air. Between that and the wood heater we haven't had our heat on yet this year....

    Shop places like Big Lots and Goodwill. Buy "vintage" clothes. Saves money AND the environment.

    I am also looking to barter more. I bake and offered to bake diabetic baked goods for a neighbor in return for wood. I also bartered tutoring another neighbor's teen teen for some kids clothes and books.

    Last big one is car repairs. I gave my dead car to a program for a semester. They keep it all semester and I paid for parts. But, by the end of the semester it was running like a clock and looking better than it had in years! I got five more years out of a car that had been declared DOA.
  8. redoak

    redoak Songster

    Feb 27, 2008
    Russia, NY
    I needed bedding for the chicken coop so I made my own using my joiner and some dry pine poles. I use dry grass clippings in the summer for bedding. In the fall I also use dry leaves for bedding. Once the snow starts to fly I might try that for bedding too [​IMG]
  9. debilorrah

    debilorrah The Great Guru of Yap

    One thing I want to mention about Big Lots: they don't always have the best price. Example - we needed glasses so I went there and thought I got a good deal at 4 glasses for $5. then I went to Target and they had some 4 for $1.99!!!! Now I check both places before I buy anything.
  10. hoosier

    hoosier Songster

    We get movies from the library instead of renting them. If they don't have what you are looking for, you can usually get through an inter-library loan.


    I want a slice (or three) of that cake!

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