Today’s guest post is from Melissa, a reader who blogs over at Mom’s Plans. I say no to a lot of guest posts because they’re something I could write myself, but when Melissa suggested this topic, I thought it would be perfect because it’s definitely something I couldn’t write myself (though I could certainly do a post on what I’ve learned from writing The Frugal Girl!).
I have several blogs that I read every day, and one of them is The Frugal Girl. I have learned so much from this blog that I asked Kristen if she would let me share.
1.) It is just fine to shop at Goodwill for clothes, gifts, etc. Kristen regularly highlights her Goodwill purchases and even shares that some of her kids’ Christmas presents come from there. I do my share of Goodwill shopping, but only recently have I come to shop there more frequently. When the snows came this winter, I realized my son had outgrown his boots. We made a trip to Goodwill and lucked out by finding boots in the size he needed and a style he didn’t mind. We got them for $2.99. Considering he will only wear them for one winter, it was a great buy!
2.) Consider the environmental impact of throw away items such as wrapping paper. Each year that I have read her blog, Kristen highlights her homemade gift bags. I thought they were cute and considered making them myself. They are definitely on my list of things to do next Christmas since I just read on the Washington Post.com that 4 million TONS of wrapping paper go in the landfill each year after Christmas. Yikes!
3.) Reduce food waste to lower your budget and be environmentally friendly. Thanks to Kristen’s influence, I regularly post my food waste. I must admit, I have fallen off the bandwagon lately, but I was close to $100 of food wasted from February to October of this year. As ridiculous and embarrassing as that is, I was no where near the estimated typical American family’s food waste of $590 per year. I plan to begin documenting my food waste again, and more importantly explaining how I avoided food waste.
4.) It is okay to have date night at home and make it special. Kristen regularly blogs about having date night at home and enjoying take out together. I love this idea! My husband and I can’t afford a babysitter for our 3 kids, but since they are still little and go to bed by 7 p.m., it is feasible to order take out for the two of us to make our date night more like date night, even if we are home.
5.) Aldi is a great place to save money! We only had one Aldi near us, and it was dirty and run down. However, as I read about Kristen successfully feeding her family of 6 on about $100 a week largely by shopping at Aldi, I decided to check it out again. I found a newer, cleaner Aldi, and was impressed with the savings. I don’t go there every week, but it is back on my rotation of stores again.
6.) I can stay home, take care of my kids, and contribute to the family financially. I am continually impressed with how Kristen homeschools her children and contributes financially from home by teaching piano lessons, photographing weddings and blogging.
7.) The East is a beautiful place to live. I live in the Midwest and have only been out to New York. Kristen’s beautiful pictures of her surroundings make me long to visit the rest of the East Coast.
Melissa blogs about her family’s attempts to live a fulfilling life on less at Mom’s Plans. She has recently quit her job to stay home with her children (6, 2 and 9 months) and is working to contribute to the family finances through writing at home. She also blogs about her family’s practice of not spending more than $100 eating out in a month at Dining Out Challenge.
Today’s 365 post: Would this make you nervous?