Suggestions for making it through hard times - add some, no whining!

Discussion in 'Random Ramblings' started by JennsPeeps, Jan 22, 2009.

  1. JennsPeeps

    JennsPeeps Rhymes with 'henn'

    Jun 14, 2008
    South Puget Sound
    Hen'biddies suggested to me that there be a thread w/ suggestions for making it through hard times. There are many, many of us here who are struggling, so why not share your tried & true tips for making it? Tips can be financial or emotional in nature, just no whining about your situation: we've all experiencing financial difficulties.

    I cook nearly everything from scratch. It's amazing how much money it saves us when a loaf of bread costs pennies and a batch of chicken broth is free.

    It's counter-intuitive, but I rarely use coupons. Most coupons are for processed foods I'd never eat.

    What do you do to get by?
  2. debilorrah

    debilorrah The Great Guru of Yap Premium Member

    Since our house is full of men, I take advantage of sales on meat. When sirloin is $2.19/lb, I buy as much as I can afford. Same with whole chickens on sales for $.69/lb. I buy 8 of them and freeze them for leaner times.

    We also use ALOT of potatoes since they are so cheap to buy....
  3. Rice is relatively inexpensive and versatile. Dress it up, dress it down. We often have a rice lunch here. less than thirty cents of rice will feed the three homeschoolers, myself and have enough leftovers for another lunch.

    Growing a garden in the spring and summer and canning, freezing or otherwise preserving for later use cuts our budget some.
  4. sunnychooks

    sunnychooks Songster

    Jul 21, 2007
    Besides only using cold water to do laundry, I set the timer for only a 10 minute cycle. I was told by a repairman that clothes will be clean by the time they are "swished" for 8 minutes. My washer has a 15 minute timer on it and by not setting it for the full 15 minute cycle I figure I've been saving 5 minutes worth of electricity every time I have to do a load.
  5. debilorrah

    debilorrah The Great Guru of Yap Premium Member

    Quote:I love rice, but no one else in house does, so it's noodles and potatoes for us. I also only use cold water for laundry.
  6. Beau coop

    Beau coop Songster

    May 19, 2008
    We only run the drier once or twice a week. We wash clothes in cold water, hang most of them up. Any "leftovers" are combined into one dryer load. (or 2 if towels- I can't do crunchy towels!)
  7. Amyable

    Amyable Songster 9 Years

    Dec 16, 2008
    Greenleaf, WI
    For anyone with babies/toddlers, we buy our diapers and wipes at

    They have free shipping on orders over $45 and huge boxes of product (cheaper in bulk.) We order about every 8-10 weeks and its shipped to the house, so convenient. We spend about $25 on diapers per month doing it this way.

    We would consider cloth diapers, but as we have city water, it wouldn't help in cost savings.
  8. wegotchickens

    wegotchickens DownSouth D'Uccles & Silkies

    Jul 5, 2007
    Sevier County, TN
    Ditto on the cold water washing.

    Also, I plan meals from meals. I buy HUGE roasts when on sale. Put them in the crockpot to stew all day. I put tons of onions in with the beef roasts, homemade tomato sauce in with pork roasts.

    First meal: chunks of meat from the roast with side dishes.

    Another meal: Rice dish made with pot juices and bits of meat & veggies from previous meal.

    Another meal: Soup made with the pot juices. French onion from beef juices, tomato soup with the dense settlings of the tomato/ pork juices.

    Another meal: Quesadillas.

    Another meal: Sandwiches

    I always cook to have plenty of leftovers. And since I have teenagers, this also means we're ready for unexpected guests. Some meals just have more rice or sides and less meat in them if company shows up [​IMG]
  9. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    check out [​IMG]

    (It's a BYC spinoff) (edited to correct URL [​IMG])

    My tips: cook, don't buy processed food, learn to like beans, learn to fix things, and buy used not new if you must buy at all.

    WWII slogan sums it up pretty well, "Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without".

    Works just as well now [​IMG]

    Last edited: Jan 22, 2009
  10. sred98

    sred98 Songster

    Jan 18, 2008
    We also use dried beans. You can use the leftover brown beans for refried beans, and the red beans for red beans and rice. We probably eat more rice than potatoes. Save the bones, skin and fat from meat to make stock with. I freeze any leftover broth in the gallon bags, and mark whether it is beef, chicken, or pork. When I make ribs, I parboil them before smoking them. It tenderizes them and gives me several gallons of stock that I can use with beans, noodles, or dressing.

    We also do a lot of soups/stews and casseroles. Shop on sale. Save stale bread for dressings and freeze it til you are ready to use it. Grow your own food when possible.

    I also buy almost 100% of my furniture used. Specifically from thrift shops, garage sales and auctions, and you would NEVER know it. Except that I am really proud of finding a 19th century table at an auction for $30, rather than paying $2,000 for it! [​IMG] [​IMG] I have also picked up furniture, light fixtures, chicken (parrot) cages and other items that have been left on the curb for free or trash. My kids are mortified, my DH thinks it is hilarious, but it works!

    I buy holiday decorations after the holiday. In fact, I have been doing it so long, that it is now a after Christmas, the kids and I go do our ornament shopping.

    I also do the same with seeds for the garden. Buy them cheap at the end of the season, for next year. Or, join a garden exchange.


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