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Saving Money vs. Saving Time

To me, thriftiness is not just about saving money. It's about making the best use of the resources you have. For me, one of my most precious resources is TIME.

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Don't get me wrong; I'm a great admirer of frugality and have enjoyed reading and using many of the tips published here. I love finding ways to be more efficient and effective. But while spending hours refinishing furniture and searching the grocery store aisles for the cheapest brand is admirable (and fun), please consider what you're giving up to save a few bucks.

At this point in my life, playing with my kids, and studying to finish my degree are more important than the few cents I'd save searching for the cheapest can of corn. In a few years, my kids will be at an age where they won't want Mom to play with them anymore. And by finishing my degree earlier I'll be able to support my family better that much sooner.

Spending a bit more money now to gain time for family and education is a wise long-term investment, to my way of thinking.

By Lynne from Albuquerque

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November 6, 20040 found this helpful

I tried to post a reply but received an error message. Forgive me if this is a redundant post.

I understand the point you're making. Please keep in mind, however, that many of us are in dire financial straits and absolutely MUST live frugally just to get by. I personally have to feed my daughter and myself on $10 a week, so saving a few pennies on a can of corn might mean the difference between being able to get the corn or not. I am college educated, and I work full-time, so my only other option to living frugally would be to get a second job - which would take me away from my daughter even more. I far prefer to spend the extra time hanging my laundry with my daughter playing close by. I do admire your priorities (they are mine as well) but when times are rough, you "do what you gotta do" and hope for better days ahead. Fortunately, frugality comes in varying degrees to meet the needs and desires of everyone.

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November 6, 20040 found this helpful

By using this site you can find the hints on how to make meats or etc. stretch a meal.

My mother was able to stay at home full time and

raise 4 daughters and my dad helped.Grocery shopping was always a fun event carrying the coupon

around was an important job for us kids. We grew up in loving stable home and my mom did use a lot of tips to save money and no one felt deprived of a loving family. I guess it comes down as to what you think a family should be.

We took many vacations and never lacked for anything.

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November 6, 20040 found this helpful

Sorry about the error, we were testing a couple things and something went haywire. Seems to be working now. I do agree, though. For many a frugal lifestyle isn't an option.

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November 6, 20040 found this helpful

This recent thread has some related viewpoints:

Adding Up the Savings from a Frugal Life

http://www.thriftyfun.com/tf432087.tip.html

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November 7, 20040 found this helpful

Hi everyone, I completely understand that everyone comes from a different place financially, and that different measures are needed for different situations. I also fully realize that I'm one of the fortunate ones that has the option of spending a bit more to save time. I guess my point was simply to be aware of the tradeoffs, and perhaps there might be options that save time as well as money.

For example, while clothes certainly need to be clean and unsmelly, as long as they're presentable I save time by choosing to ignore the fact that they're not always spotless and my whites aren't always the whitest. I also only buy clothes that don't need ironing(!). If a table is looking old and grungy, instead of spending hours refinishing it, I find cheap but pretty fabric at the discount section of the fabric store and make a quick drape instead.

I'm sure that my choices will also change as the kids get bigger. When they're older, I can have them participate in the table-refinishing project, teach them how to oxygen-bleach their stains, and make a game out of finding the cheapest can of corn. I hope to instill in them a sense of thriftiness too. To me, that's a value that never goes out of style, and is appropriate no matter how rich you are.

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February 7, 20120 found this helpful

I so agree with you. At different times in my life, resources have changed. I have done the couponing, thrift shops, and even now I keep my skills sharpened because we never know what's around the corner for any of us.

I was a single mom at one time while also going to university full time. I chose to not work full time so I could spend that extra time with my tween daughter. I was so glad I did. As a military wife, I watched my pennies as well as my $$. My dad told me even as a child I could squeeze Lincoln and make him cry......check your coins for that one. lol

Now I am using those skills used to save money, time etc. to frugally use my personal energy what with age and medical issues these days.

The one thing which strikes is even at my advanced years, I can still learn things when I pop in here. Thanks so much for all you who post. So happy there are so many different ways to be save whatever is necessary at that moment. :)

Dee T.

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