I don’t know about the rest of you, but we have spent A LOT of time thinking of ways to save money around our house this past year. For instance, a couple weeks ago I spent $140 SAVED over $300 at Old Navy! When I texted my husband about this, his first question, of course, was how much I spent, but that was besides the point.
Okay, bad example. Though, I would like to mention that the Old Navy funds went towards budgeted summer clothes for myself and two children, as well as a few birthday presents. I had been in Old Navy several times and didn’t make any purchases until the prices dropped to 75% off. That day, if I picked up anything on accident that wasn’t on sale, I was totally that annoying woman that decided not to get the item after it rung up full price. Might have bothered the person in line behind me, but I also didn’t pay $32.50 for a shirt. The highest priced item on my bill was a pair of khaki pants for my son, which he desperately needed for several nice occasions. They were on sale, but not 75%. They were still less than $10.
In all seriousness, we are trying to cut the budget in everyway we can. Today I had the opportunity to save money by doing three small things:
- Raised the thermostat in our house four degrees
- it has been over 100 degrees here in Virginia for a while now. The heat is impossible to bear outside. But if it is over 100 degrees outside, it certainly doesn’t need to be 73 inside! The AC has been running CONSTANTLY and still not getting the house as cool as we have it programmed to. We bumped the AC up to 77 degrees, but I may put it up even more. We’ll see how we feel at 77 for a while first
- Replaced the filters in the vents for our AC
- while dealing with the overworked AC, I checked the filters and realized they haven’t been changed in over 8 months. WOOPS! We usually buy 3 month filters, but I have decided to go back to the one month version. I just never remember to change them on the 3 month schedule. Even if I put it on the calendar
- Unplugged the fridge in the garage
- We have two very nice refrigerators: one inside, one out in the garage. However, we have changed our grocery buying habits and aren’t keeping that high volume of food anymore. We cleaned out both fridges and had MORE than enough room to consolidate everything to the one inside. I am not sure how much this will save us, but certainly at least a little money. I am sure it wasn’t cheap keeping a fridge running in a garage that is over 100 degrees!
So I technically didn’t save any money today. In fact, I had to spend money on the new vent filters. These may have been small steps, but the more small steps we complete, the more giant leaps we’ll be able to take in the future. We have some large spending goals, both short and long term that we are trying to reach. We have always done a great job budgeting and are able to do most the things we desire in our daily lives. It still hasn’t felt like enough.
Are you looking for inspiration to change your lifestyle, spending habits and more? Mine came from one main place: my husband and I both listened to the Dave Ramsey: Financial Peace University* cds and it has completely changed the way we are living and running our finances. I have ALWAYS considered myself to be financially savvy (and used to even teach a financial math class). I have to admit I learned A LOT listening to this course. Ramsey is also able to deliver his techniques in a way that will keep your attention, AND make you laugh.
As a family we have also been trying to achieve a goal of a minimal lifestyle, placing more importance on our actions and relationships than the things we have. My sister recently pulled my attention to a blog, The Minimalist Mom, that is aimed at doing exactly that! I have barely skimmed the surface and I am already hooked. Her site has also directed me to others that I can’t wait to read. You can’t just read them and say “what great ideas these are,” you have to ACT on them too! Which I am going to go do right now as I leave you to clean out my craft room. Dun, Dun, DUHHHHHHHHN!
*These are my own opinions and in no way a paid advertisement