What makes someone take up frugal habits? Being independent of "keeping up with the Jones'" as the saying puts it! Going along with the crowd or whatever is "in" at the moment seems to be an indication that one has no individuality!
Frugality is a habit and like any other, the more you feed it, the stronger it grows!
When the main wage earner in your family grouses about high costs, do you begin to defend yourself? Think "we"; your spouse isn't necessarily a tight wad, so adults who sit down to think up ways to save here and there will be setting a good example for kids and stretching their income further! When it comes to income and outgo, it's "all in the family!"
Hooray for you Janet. I wish I had learned that lesson early in life and it would be much easier now that we are retired.
My husband is the one who is frugal not stingy just frugal. Even if he saves a penny on something that penny is in his pocket and not somebody elses', and eventually those pennies add up. So live good, pray hard and be a blessing to someone. Barb
Ha! When I was growing up my father was perversely proud of having the oldest car on the block! But we always lived below our means - & those early lessons have really helped me in good stead!
everyone laughed at my father in law because he religously recycles cans & bottles. He accumulated $20,000. from doing this!
I am a one person and four cat household. When I was growing up at home the fact that my parents were raised in Oklahoma during the Great Depression was not lost in my parent's household. It often came up several times a week. My parents were frugal and some of that frugality rubbed off on me. The only thing my mother insisted upon was buying national brand groceries, store brands and/or local and regional brands were absolutely forbidden unless we could show here that it was owned by a national brand. She would still wrinkle her nose at it and complain that it was just "not as good" as her favorite brand, which BTW was Del Monte.
All of this frugality has really come in handy during the past few years of living on a fixed income. I take full advantage of a place on the web called Freecycle.com. It runs via Yahoo. It's NOT a trading site but rather a place where folks offer stuff that's still in good shape and you can offer the same. They just ask that you not use it as a way to avoid taking a piece of junk to the dump where it belongs. You can lose your privilges and be removed for abuse; the same goes for offering anything that is too risque or just plain porno.
Well, that is enough rambling for now other that to say I think everyone should read the tips that come in the newsletters and follow some of the related links. You never know what it might trigger in your head.
I also believe in being frugal. However, my mom was obsessed with not spending money all the years I was growing up. She cut paper napkins in 4 pieces, and did the same for paper towels. She would only burn a 25 watt light bulb in a room. My dad worked and she stayed home. She said we didn't have much money, so I had to wear my dad's made over shirts when the collar & cuffs became too ragged for him to wear. The kids in high school teased me for wearing a man's shirt, because the buttons were on the wrong side. I had to make the rest of my clothes, even my coat one year. I had polio when I was age 4 that affected my legs. I cried myself to sleep with leg pain every night, but mom said we couldn't afford a heating pad. I got married at age 19 so I could leave home. I worked and paid my own way through college and graduate school, and always had good jobs. I saved money, but I also enjoyed the money I worked so hard to earn. The heartbreaking thing was that after my mom died, I found out that all those years growing up in "poverty", we weren't really poor! My dad made a good income. My mother was an obsessive miser and our family suffered so much for it. It was a sickness with her. I'm thankful for lots of the frugal tips I learned, and I agree it's foolish to try to keep up with the Jones. But, life is to be enjoyed, too, in a sane, sensible way. Liz
I have had to teach myself to become very frugal. After loosing my husband at an early age, now living alone for the first time in my life on a very low income. I am finding the most frugal ideas here on Thrifty Fun. And I post my ideas. It is a whole new life for me. But, Strongly I can say, "I'm doing it." I have learned to cook for one, or cook and freeze. I never waste any food. I make a meal one day, and turn it into soup the next day! And this is difficult for me because I am disabled at a very young age. I had to give up my career and hang up my car keys at 43 years old. Now I depend on my kids and neighbors to help me anytime they can.
Thank you for your frugal ideas!
Jackie H. Southern Massachusetts
You can also be proud because most of the time being frugal means being Earth friendly. Wasting less is saving energy and in this way your kids and your neighbors also depend on you and not only them but the generations to come because whatever solutions will be chosen to keep the environment safe for our health it will include consuming less.
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