Five Things I've Done to Save Money Lately


Good morning friends! The cold winds are blowing, the rain is pouring, and we went 12 hours without television or internet yesterday! How's it going at your house?  Seriously, it's such a strange thing to have no internet type connection to the outside world. On the other hand, it was peaceful and I accomplished so much more yesterday. Including a nap. :)

There is a certain type of blog post that always catch my eye. I love to read posts and articles about saving money. Now to be perfectly honest, I'm a shopper yet I will pinch a penny as hard as I can on certain things. I call it being selectively frugal

Are you selectively frugal? Or are you downright frugal? My inquiring mind wants to know!

Today I thought I'd share five things I've done lately to save a little money. These are not extreme money saving ideas...like capturing the shower water or taking ketchup packets...these are little things I like to do pretty regularly.

#1  No more magazines at the grocery store checkout. This decorating/magazine loving girl just cannot pay $9.99 for a magazine. Not doing it!! I do have a subscription to Cottage Journal which has been my favorite for several years now. Cottage Journal is beautiful on every page and its arrival in the mail is an event for me. 


#2  Grocery pick-up at WalMart (referral link) is one of my favorite things now. If I'm being perfectly honest, I hate shopping in the store at WalMart but to shop online and have those sweet people put the groceries in my car is life changing! This started for me when I hurt myself last year. I was feeling really slovenly and guilty having someone else do these tasks for me. Then, I read an article that said you will spend less with grocery pickup because you aren't wandering the aisles getting random things you don't need. Hello! Thank you for taking away all the guilt feelings and sign me up, please. 

#3  Our son moved out last month and left us with two bedrooms to decorate. I purchased the most gorgeous bed ever from a sweet lady on CraigsList and the rest came from our very full closets...there was a trip or two to HomeGoods. The bedrooms are still works-in-progress but they are turning out beautifully. Oh, in a totally different area of the house, did you see the dining room tablerunner I made last week? Free! It was free because everything was already here. 

New rooms coming soon!

#4   I have always loved the library! For book club, we need a different fiction book each month and I am almost always able to find the book at the library. Once I bought the book at Half Price Books and once or twice from Audible but I avoid buying them because they will not be read more than once. Lots of people get videos, read magazines, and there are social activities at the library too. The library is where the cool kids hang out!

#5  We are eating at home more. We are eating at home more. I will keep saying that to remind myself that even when you are tired and running errands and have no plan, what you eat at home is better than eating out. Maybe we are too picky but the majority of the time, we think the food we eat out is just pretty average. We are trying to eat out only when we are with friends or doing something special.


There you have it - five selectively frugal ways we've been saving a little money lately. This is something we want to continue to work on so I'd love to hear your ideas too. Painless ways to save - maybe I should have called this post by that title. :)


38 comments

  1. Great post! I am frugal, too...magazines have become quite expensive,,,I'm going to check the library, too! I need to check out the Walmart pick-up...no impulse buying!

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  2. These are great tips and wonderful suggestions! I wanted to add... you can also find free digital downloads of books from a great selection at Amazon!

    I'm pretty much selectively frugal, as well! I always search for a promotional code whenever I shop online, and if I'm successful, even with free ship or 10% off... I feel like I've won a contest or something! :)

    Thank you for this post today! Blessings, Net

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    1. Oh yes, a promotional code always comes in handy when ordering. I feel great about that too. :)

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  3. I love this post. I am doing all but #2 as well. Well, let me say this about the magazines. I agree --no way on the price anymore. I still am getting two in the mail and am about to whittle it down to one..just haven't made my decision on the one:) I saved a good many of the Christmas ones from the past couple of years to keep me from needing a new one. I even noticed that many of the same homes show up over and over.
    I too am using what is in my closets to decorate rather than buy new. Honestly, I am kind of over buying so much. It took staying out of the stores, but I haven't gotten better with being satisfied with what I have. Doesn't give us as much to blog about, but I am okay with that too:)
    I seriously love books, but I have tried to limit my book buying and have been visiting the library. I have visited the new releases bookcase and have read two books recently that I really liked. Now, I don't have to find a shelf for them although I liked doing that:)
    Eating at home safes tons of money and is healthier too. I haven't done the pick up yet, but my daughter has and I know if I were still working out of the home I would. I do better with a list!
    Great post Stacey. You hit the nail on the head!
    I am having great trouble commenting these days...
    Sandy @ homeemajor

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  4. I also have a couple of subscriptions - Cottage Journal being one. It saves you so much money over the newsstand prices. We seldom go out to eat, but if we do it is usually lunch. Love the bedding!

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  5. And what I love here is that you are describing a flourishing life--not a life of deprivation!
    It's good to read posts on frugality that also come from a place of abundance!

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    1. Thank you, Michele. I love that you used the word "flourishing". That's a wonderful descriptive word. :)

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    2. I love this comment! Sometimes this concept is hard to put into words! Thanks!

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  6. These are such great tips. I am a big fan of the library. I even get magazines to read there - either check out paper copies or use flipster to download on my ipad. I need to try the grocery pick up sometime.

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  7. Great frugal tips Stacey! I am intentionally frugal. Just love finding a bargain. :) I have not done the grocery store check out thing, but may need to try it out. And yes, always shop our homes!! :)
    hugs,
    Jann

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  8. These are all great ways to save money Stacey. I love the one with the magazines. I save on that by using up airline miles for the magazines. :) Yes it's sometimes the little things that help us save money.
    The bedroom is decorated so beautiful and I like the colors you chose.

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  9. Oh, this is one of my favorite posts too! I love getting tips from smart shoppers...like you! I'm frugal! I don't mind paying for something that is good quality but I'm pretty careful in my every day shopping. We don't eat out much. We buy quality ingredients to make great meals at home. And as much as I love magazines I don't buy them any more. I will say I have been tempted lately to get a subscription to Southern Living. I miss getting a magazine in the mail. Thanks for your great ideas! Hugs!

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  10. I love posts like this also! I have done the Walmart grocery pickup several times now, but during this time of year, I like to go in and browse sometimes, too!
    You are right about those magazines. I try and wait until I am at Costco because their magazines are 30% off.
    Great post!!

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  11. Great post, Stacey. I haven't done grocery pick up and only rarely pick up a magazine anymore. We eat out on the weekend when I just cannot cook another meal. Thanks for sharing these fine tips. I can't wait to see the guest room.

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  12. Wonderful post, and beautiful bedroom!! I can't wait to see the reveal.

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  13. I so agree with saving money by eating at home. As well, I sign books out of our library regularly. I won't read a book (fiction) more than once, so paying for it is unnecessary if I can find it in the library. This was a great post! -Jenn

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  14. I cook almost every night so a dinner out is a treat! You do good, I too no longer buy check out magazines, so expensive. Have a wonderful day!

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  15. I can't wait to see your rooms! And I'm with you on saving on little things. I'm curious, how is the quality of the fresh produce with online grocery ordering? I am super picky about choosing the lettuce without the brown edges or making sure I get the very best yellow bell pepper of the bunch ;) I do order things like coffee and baking ingredients online already for delivery, so it would be convenient to do it all at once! Great post!

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  16. Love this post! I am frugal and thrifty. I am always looking for a deal or seeing if there is a coupon available. Being raised by grandparents that were frugal just stuck with me all these years. And I guess I am pretty much like everyone else. If I see something that I really want I buy it whether it's a frugal move or not. My SIL says whatever is our priority is what we do. That is true. It has become quiet funny as when I walk into a department store it seems the first place I go to is the clearance rack. My husband reminds me that I can shop off the regular racks! LOL! I remind him that If I find something on clearance that I like then I save enough money to buy something else!!! Great post. Hugs and blessings, Cindy

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  17. I love "selectively frugal"! That describes me perfectly. I try to be frugal in all areas but sometimes.... I love your new bedroom. I think we would all love to shop in your closet! I've thought about grocery pick up but I'm always nervous about something new. Do I tip? What if I'm a few minutes late/early? Crazy, I know. Also, I rejoined WW this year and at the very beginning a girl who was asked how she lost 8 pounds in two weeks replied " I didn't eat anything that came from a window". We all laughed but what she meant is that she didn't eat out anymore. Like you, we aren't that impressed with eating out anymore. So we've been trying to eat at home almost all of the time - which is sometimes hard when there is just two of you. Great ideas Stacey! Thanks.

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  18. Love this post, Stacey! Yes, I am also frugal, can't help it. I have been known to not buy an item that I want unless I have a coupon. My husband just shakes his head and laughs. Well, may be is all the years of watching every penny while serving in the military and raising three kids. Some habits are hard to break.I am with you about the magazines. Ten dollars is a bit much got something that eventually is going to end up in the recycle bin. When it comes to books, my daughter is the head librarian at one the Air Force bases here in town, so she keeps me well supplied with anything I want to read. It is pretty nice. LOL
    Enjoy the rest of the week and thank you for a wonderful post. Take care, Maria

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  19. Hi Stacey,
    I too will not pay the price of the magazines anymore. With pinterest you can gather fun ideas there that are all in the magazines and most of the magazines have pinterest boards or are on IG. I too only get Cottage Journal and enjoy that. I do love to see that pretty magazine arrive in my mail box too. Every once in awhile you need a sweet magazine to physically look at. Cottage Journal I love for how nice it is made and the covers are always so pretty. I have found some magazine back issues in half price book stores that are marked down significantly. Happy Wednesday.
    Hugs,
    Kris

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  20. All good tips! I haven't tried the grocery pick up yet. I'm a little confused as to whether you're supposed to tip or not. On one hand, there's a small fee (is that the tip?) and you're paying a little more for each item (at least at HEB) so I never know what to do. The only reason I haven't tried it at HEB yet is because you can't use their store coupons if you do pick up and I use a lot of those, lol! One other thing I do is use my rewards points to purchase things on Amazon. I just ordered two printer ink cartridges and didn't pay a dime. :)

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  21. Great post! We also moved recently and have been shopping from my own stash as we decorate the new home. Your new bedroom is so pretty. I enjoy finding new uses and places for the many things I've loved for years but did have our living and dining room seating reupholstered. We shopped new for a couple of pieces but found none we liked better. My husband is recently part time retired and has developed an interest in visiting antique and consignment shops so we've had lots of fun. I did not feel "at home" until I got acquainted with our town's library! I get my mom's books there too as she is in a nursing home and reads a couple every week. I take my old So Living & Country Living magazines to the free bin there and take home those I don't subscribe to. They even a sewing machine area for use (although I am a long time accomplished seamstress with several machines). I make all our drapes and have only the 2 guest rooms left to do. We ate out so much after moving that I gained 12 lbs so now we're eating home so I can lose it. My husband loves to go to the grocery store and he buys TOO MUCH. we are working on it! I've been putting up things in the freezer which takes time but defiantly saves money. Also I use you tube on our TV as my gym. As I read over your frugal ideas and the comments it occurs to me that we are practicing good stewardship of the resources we have. Also, being in and using what is in our own houses makes such good financial sense because it really is our most expensive asset so why not make it work for us? Pamela

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  22. Great ideas Stacey! I love magazines and refuse to buy them at the stores too. How in the world can anyone justify (including the magazine) $10.00?! We eat out way too much. I hate cooking. I wish you could find me a cheap way to have a chef!

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  23. I've not heard of Cottage Journal Magazine and will check it out. I see it is on Amazon for $25 (5 issues) but even that seems a bit pricey. I've whittled down my subscriptions as of late and now only get Real Simple and Southern Living. I do love a good magazine.

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  24. Hey, Stacey! Love the post, I am frugal as well. I cannot believe the price of magazines now, and I love reading but try to use the library and a really fun used bookstore near us where they give you buying credit for donated books, and also ebooks at good prices. I do believe in supporting authors that are special to me, but try to save a little. Hope you saw my post yesterday about upcycling old jeans to jazzy, frugal at its best, ha!

    Lori Jo - 50 With Flair
    www.50withflair.com

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  25. I would say my husband is definitely frugal (how else could you retire at age 50?!), and I am selectively frugal. The nice thing is we complement each other. I've influenced him to loosen up (or rather, get used to me doing what I want when it comes to spending, hehe), and he has helped me be a little pickier when I do spend.
    A thought-provoking post, for sure.

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  26. Stacey,
    The main ways I am saving money is with large ticket items. 1) I negotiate my electrical rate each time my old contract runs out. I look online at the website that lists all the Texas electrical carriers to find the best rate. This has saved me thousands of dollars over the past 3 years. 2) I negotiate my TV service by requesting a customer loyalty discount. This has saved hundreds of dollars in just one year. 3) I negotiate my telephone service. 4) I have an independent insurance agent who compares quotes with about 50 companies for my house and car insurance each year. This year my car insurance quote was about $240 more than last year. I called my agent who checked to see why. The insurance company had a traffic ticket listed on my record. I did not have any tickets and was able to get a copy of my driving record from the Texas state driving records which my agent submitted the insurance company. They removed the erroneous ticket report and issued a new insurance quote.

    I also have a CPA who helps me with my IRS taxes each year. She is knowledgeable about the new laws and was able to make a suggestion for me that has saved about $500-$600 dollars in income tax for 2018.

    Yes, I am also frugal with the small things, but staying on top of the big ticket items really saves thousands of dollars. It does take time, research, and talking with representatives, but has paid off BIG.

    Judith

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  27. Oh Stacey I love reading this post! I've always been very careful on how I spend money. I also love getting books from the library and I by used magazines from antique shops, usually they sell for a dollar or two for a bundle. I also donate my magazines back to shops. I too have been thinking of ways to save money and working on making life here more simple.

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  28. Stacey! I could not love this post more! I really need to do all 5 of the ways you listed! I did stop getting my nails done and its killing me! I subscribe to magazines to save...thats better then paying full price, right!? Eating out is an ISSUE though!!!!! Would love to figure out a way to save on cable! Cable bills put me in bad moods, LOL! Nancy

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    1. Nancy, the AT&T bill just gets me mad every single month. We would not have cable if it weren't for college football. We just started watching Netflix this summer and love it!

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  29. I love love love grocery delivery! I had Shipt for a year when I hurt my knee, and my daughter has instacart now because she has 2 toddlers and a demanding career. We use her account when we are at the beach house and don't want to waste time going to the grocery store. And we both agree, you save a ton of money with no impulse buying, it more than pays for itself!
    Jenna

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  30. My husband has a lot of travel points from work, that I recently traded in for a ton of magazines. Honestly, I gave up on buying them years ago, way too expensive and I never had time to read them with the kids underfoot. It's been fun to get them all in the mail and then I pass them on to my sister who adores them too...because we were raised frugal...but yes, selectively so!!

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  31. Stacey, I laughed (at myself!) when I read the first thing -- For some reason, magazines have always wanted to give me ridiculously cheap subscriptions, so I had several. And they were mounting up! Once I stopped all subscriptions and purged all my mags, I have only picked up the occasional single copy. Believe, it's better for me! :D Number 5 is sooo true. I'm trying to plan ahead for busy days so I'll have something homecooked ready to go and not have to resort to takeout. Beautiful guest room!

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  32. Those are all great tips. One that I go by is purchasing my clothes on sale or clearance prices. I also shop at thrift stores. Our downfall is eating out.

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    1. Us too, Terra. We make promises to each other that we won't eat out and then we fail. I'm always mad at myself for it too because I just don't think the food is that great usually.

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