Wednesday, August 3, 2011

The BIG List of Frugal Ideas That Motivate Me

When we returned home to the USA from New Zealand, we were already in debt and about to take on a bunch more.  What we had was a storage unit filled with Home Decor and Antiques.  We we didn't have was a Car, Furniture, Clothing, Basic Household Needs (like towels, broom, mop, sheets, toilet scrubbers), Food, Cleaning Supplies, or Toiletries.  My list was long!

Think about all of the "stuff" you have in your house that you use on a daily basis and how long it takes to accumulate that "stuff."  We had none of that and we needed it right away.  So, I charged.  And charged.  And charged.  At the time, I was so overwhelmed I felt I had no choice but to spend, spend, spend.  

That's when I began to do a ton of research into Frugal Living.  There's lots of tips and tricks out there for saving money, but I was looking for some Real Motivation.  Something that would keep me on the straight and narrow.  I needed real-life examples that someone was actually DOING, not just talking about.  

That's when I found The Cheapskate Guide and the Simple Living Manifesto over at ZenHabits.   It's a list of effort-driven tips that, if applied, will really rein in spending and get the mind churning.  

Now, is Leo Babauta's Minimalist Lifestyle for me?  No way!  I love to be surrounded by the Abundance of my Own Creation.  But, his ideas about Simplicity and Evaluating my Priorities are extremely motivating when I find myself wanting to go out on a spending spree.  

Reading and re-reading these lists from time to time keeps me from falling into that "frugal slump."  It gives me encouragement that IT CAN BE DONE and that Frugal Living is far better than Extravagant Spending!  I'd love it if you'd share what tips or lists keep you motivated in the comments below!



  1. My children keep me motivated. I quit my job to stay home and take care of my MIL & four kids (14,12,9,5). DH & I also decided that since I was home all day I needed to homeschool the children. And accomplish this on only his state job salary of $40k.

    To remain frugal is to work within the constraints of our bank account and the goals we have set out to acheive. God is amazing, He continually meets/exceeds our needs. Therefore to honor the One who satisfies my every need, it is my joy to not be frivolous & to creatively stretch ourselves to make things work.

  2. I stay frugal so I can keep being a stay at home wife and grandma. I just hate it when I have to be employed and am so much happier at home.

    Reading blogs like yours give me new ideas.

  3. We love frugal living here in our home. We don't have debt (besides our home, which we are working on paying off early) and we like to live simply.

    Thanks for sharing these great links too. I am visiting from WFMW and glad to "meet" you. Stop by and say hi anytime!

    LaVonne @ Long Wait For Isabella

  4. thank you so much for choosing Passionately Artistic this week to link your projects.
    You are featured this week :)

  5. Thanks for sharing your tips. When my husband and I decided I would stay home and raise our daughter we gave ourselves about 6mos. By God's grace we have made it 51/2 years. We do not have much to show for it, but are happy nontheless. With today's economy getting worse (my husband works construction) we are always looking for ways to really stretch our budget. Once again thanks for sharing and i look forward to reading more.

  6. Learning to sew has been a great experience! (youtube taught me.) I have fixed my jeans and made them last another year as well as sewing up those armpit holes and actually making shorts for my son out of t-shirts and handed down material.

  7. Those are sites I frequently read as well.
    Presently I am cleaning out a display cabinet (built in) and decided that if I was not enjoying something, or it was not among my several hundred favorites, that I should pass it along to someone else to enjoy.
    Being frugal goes far beyond money. What motivates me? Survival. We are among the many unemployed and without UC benefits.

  8. I live frugally so I can help my children and others. It is really what fives my life purpose.

  9. I'm trying to be more frugal in little ways. Once huge ways is to stop eating fast food, which is expensive and not good for you (this is a hard battle for me because I'm addicted). I've switched to ice tea that I make in my kitchen window and just add tea. I use vinegar for fabric softner, it helps with stains too. I get my books from Paperbackswap. According to their records that if I had bought books, used, at $4.50 each then compared to the shipping and handling of shipping the books I have I have saved $400 in the past few years. I have to admit sometimes I can't wait, so I'll get something at Target at $5.99 or$8 for large print. I never pay full price unless it's a Specialty book, meaning I want to keep it. Even though I try to find the best price.

    I buy cleaners at the $1 store and some containers. I mean you can't beat a $1.

  10. Your site is very helpful and inspiring. Keep up the good work. I already do some of the things on your blog (before I found it) but this just motivates me to do more of these things!

  11. I'm making small changes - thanks for the good advice. Every bit helps. I'm not willing to go to extremes, but making my own cookie mix, fabreeze, rinse-aid and foaming hand soap will add up.

    Thanks for taking the time to share.

  12. I love spending money but I love saving even more. the more I save the more I have to spend. Good will, $1 store, yard sales, craft stores, home made, repurposed. my car get me to a & b. I dont need a new car. I don't buy junk. Paint can be your friend. My friends laugh and say I'm cheap. another friend lost 3 jobs in 1 year. Then wanted me to help her set up a budget. My house is furnished by craig list. A little research and you can save thousands. Anyone that visits our home would never know by looking at our "stuff" that it is used.

  13. I have been a stay at home mom now for 5 months...there is no better job in the world, but there is no more stressful job in the world than running a household on a take home income of $30k a year...while i am fortunate to have some consulting hours to make a few extra dollars it is unreliable and Ive learned that i cant count this money into our budget. So after spending yet another morning on the phone begging for payment arrangements and having the paycheck essentially spent before it is even deposited i hit the internet for some comfort that i am not alone and there has to be a better way. I came across your sight and just wanted to thank you for sharing all of the wonderful tips and ideas! Cheers to having a stress free next month! Im starting frugal living today!!

  14. الحشرات من اكثر الاشياء التى تسبب الازعاج والالم لعملاءنا الكرام فتاتى الحشرات فى فصل الربيع وتبدا فى الانتشار فى فصل الصيف
    رش حشرات بالمدينة المنورة
    فاذا كنت تعانى من اعمال مكافحة حشرات بالمدينة المنورة التقليديه وتعانى من وجود الكثير من الحشرات والقيام باعمال مكافحة حشرات تؤدى الى ارجاع الحشرات مره اخرى فلا داعى للقلق من شان كل ذلك واتصل على افضل شركة مكافحة حشرات بالمدينة المنورة على الفور فالشركة
    مكافحة النمل الابيض بالمدينة المنورة
    تعتمد على افضل المبيدات المخصصه والمتعارف عليها ذات جوده عاليه وقدرتها على القضاء على الحشرات على الفور والاعتماد على افضل الاجهزه والالات التى تساعد فى القيام باعمال الرش والوصول الى اصعب الاماكن التى تختبىء فيه الحشرات واماكن اليرقات والبيض المخصص للحشرات
    شركة رش مبيدات بالمدينة المنورة
    كل ذلك بعد ان يتم تحديد عدد الجلسات التى تساعد فى القضاء على الحشره المتواجده فى المكان كل ذلك يتم باعتماد شركة مكافحة حشرات بالمدينه المنوره على الايدى العامله المدربه على اعلى مستوى حول كيفيه القيام بكل ذلك فى مقابل اقل الاسعار المتواجده فى الاسواق فلا تتردد فى الاستعانه بنا
    رش مبيدات بالمدينة المنورة
    اذا كنت فى اى مكان.


  15. Luna Trim, when you need to stream pounds without doing anything consistently, please stop fitting like a violin little by little one day to change your life.


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