I want to be in all senses of the words, All. Things. Mama.
As far back as I can remember I've wanted to be a mom, not just any mom, but the mom that stays home with her kids full time. The mom who loves even when she is not loved back, who can't breathe without thinking of her kids first. The mom who loves teaching, playing, cooking, baking, laughing, and kissing owies. The mom who is ALL THINGS MAMA. My husband and I scrimp so that dream can be fulfilled. Being a mom is not part time for me. It is something that has captured my heart. All of the going ons of my life start with thoughts of my kids. My kids consume my love and my life and I allow it because, with God's help they are the essence of what makes me a mother. This is me...

kids: the reason for moms

kids: the reason for moms

Saturday, August 14, 2010

How to be a cheapskate..lol

I wouldn't exactly call myself a TOTAL cheapskate but I'm pretty darn close. Once in a while, I still buy myself a coffee while we're out, but before having kids that was an everyday treat.  Now a days I feel guilty even spending any money on a coffee when I could have made it and brought it with me from home.  Following the arrival of our cozy bugs, and the loss of a second income, most of our life's pleasures come from things that are free.  Did you know that the library carries newly released movies?  I had no idea until we launched on this journey of living on one paycheck.   Now that we know, we don't pay to rent movies anymore, we simply check them out from the library!  Free entertainment!
There are lots of ways to entertain yourself and your kids for free.  Here are some of the ways we have fun for free. In only the last few months alone we have gone to some things in our own town that did not cost us a dime to enjoy.  The high school had a Spring into Health fair that offered a free bouncy house for the kids to play in and also had about 20 different booths to peruse that were also giving away samples such as sports drinks, bottled water, chap stick, candy, toothbrushes, balloons, etc.  Really fun and no cost for us!  In addition to the the health fair, every year there is an Arts Festival that is free to attend AND (bonus for the kiddos) it is held in a park.  Again, there are lots of booths, some with paintings, some with woodwork, jewelry, clothes, dolls, toys and much more.  Spending money not required!  Many communities will have things offered for free, you just have to look!
Other ways we save money, I price out EVERYTHING.  Want to know where to get the cheapest diapers and wipes of the highest quality? Go to Target and get the UP & UP brand.  Cheapest place to get socks for kids? Walmart.  Best place to get the most groceries for your dollar? WinCo.  Easiest way to save money on your groceries? Plan your grocery list around the dinners you are making for the week and stick to your list.  Most economical way to get kids clothes? Go to garage sales (on the last day of the sale and negotiate, sometimes you can get stuff free just because they want it gone!) and always take hand me downs from friends and family when they offer!  Buying clothes brand new is too expensive, especially when the kids are growing like weeds anyway!
Those are some of the ways we've been able to manage our money on a tight income.  Extra things we have done to cut down our bills is by simply not having EXTRA.  We don't need tv, therefore we don't pay for cable. We have cell phones, therefore we don't pay for a landline.  I can cook, therefore we don't eat out. :)  Believe it or not this saves A LOT of dinero and we are healthier because of it!  By not eating out we are avoiding many of the fatty foods offered at restaurants.  I have lost weight and weigh less than I did before having kids, and I believe it is partly due to eating meals at home.  Even when we are out for the day, I pack a lunch to take along so we do not have to buy a meal.  This may sound crazy to some, but it is a heck of a lot cheaper.  Think about it, $15 bucks on fast food compared to maybe $1 or $2 on sandwiches, carrots sticks, chips and fruit snacks prepared and packed at home.  Much cheaper and healthier and fresh.
There are a lot more things we do and do not do to keep being able to pay the bills but for right now, I'm too tired to try to think of them.  I'll tell you all about it in another post, someday!

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