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Here’s a few quick, money and earth saving tips:

  • Use the bottom of a two-liter bottle under plants to catch extra water
  • Wash your fruit and veggies in 1/4 Cup hydrogen peroxide to 1-gallon water
  • Dry your ears from swimming with a cotton ball soaked in rubbing alcohol- place in ears and tilt head to the side
  • Ask your utility company about borrowing a free meter that registers how much wattage each of your appliances and electronics uses.  My local library also had one to borrow.  Once you determine the items that draw a lot of current, you can put them on a power strip and flip the switch when the items are not in use and save the electricity (yes, things draw electricity when they are plugged in and not being used- some not enough to worry about, but others more than you would think)
  • Re-use flyers, junk mail and the like that is only printed on one side for scratch paper

These are just a few ideas to get you started but, every little bit helps!

© Marie Boyum, July 7, 2010

Happy Holidays!

There’s still time to check out craft and idea books from the library to make your own gifts to give this holiday season.  Soup and quick bread mixes (put all the dry ingredients in a bag and attach the recipe, if you have  a few more bucks, put the mix in a basket and add a few tools that may be needed to make the soup or bread, i.e., wooden spoon, measuring cup, etc.  These are inexpensive and personalized.  It lets you be creative and show you put some thought into the gifts.

Since it is the spending season, I thought you may wish to have links to sights that are frugal minded.

Stop Buying Crap:

www.stopbuyingcrap.com

Five Cent Nickel:

www.fivecentnickel.com

Mighty Bargain Hunter:

www.mightybargainhunter.com

Coupon Album:

www.couponalbum.com

Coupon Cabin:

www.couponcabin.com

Coupon Code:

www.couponcode.com

Deal Catcher:

www.dealcatcher.com

Hope you find some bargains, savings and interesting reads!

Until next time…

Marie

© Marie Boyum, December 10, 2009

It’s tree decorating time!  Here are some great ways to make your tree homey while saving money.

  • Hang old cookie cutters on the tree using bright cloth ribbon.
  • Cut shapes, using cookie cutters as a stencil, out of washed Styrofoam veggie and meat trays (the ones that come free under your food from the grocery store). Decorate with glue and glitter, sequins, ribbon, whatever you think will make it special.  This is a great project to do with children!
  • Buy an inexpensive bag of batting or cotton stuffing  from the craft store (many times Goodwill or Salvation Army stores have these as people who no long sew do not know what to do with it) and stretch it out to lay on the branches as snow cover.  A little goes a long way!
  • Don’t have  tree skirt?  Use an old sheet.  You can even use puffy paint to draw pictures on it if  you have talent in that area.
  • Using the netted bags that oranges come in, cut  the bag in the corner making a small pouch.  Place cinnamon sticks and whole cloves in the pouch and tie with colored yarn or a bright cloth ribbon; hang from the tree and enjoy the scent!

Using these ideas not only saves money, but also allows for creativity and a recycling of things you may have thrown away!  Have a wonderful holiday season and may you enjoy the simple things life has to offer!

Marie

© Marie Boyum, December 2, 2009

Here are two sites I found that may save you money.  The first lists manufacturer’s rebates.  The second is for coupons- gotta love those!

You never know where and how you can save money!  You may wish to bookmark these pages and check then before and after  you make  purchases.

Hope it helps; I will keep hunting for more money saving tips and websites to pass along!

http://www.rebateplace.com/

Use this tiny URL or try coupons.com

http://tiny.cc/H7bN6

Marie

Here are some quick and useful tips to help in the kitchen:

To clean stuck-on foods from your countertop, use a pancake turner that is made from a non-scratch material.  When I bake, especially pies and breads that have to be rolled out or kneaded with flour on a flat surface, this helps enormously in cleaning.

Don’t have a rubber scraper handy to clean out that bowl while baking?  Cut a plastic lid from a margarine dish into a triangle (make it as large as you can, using most of the lid but eliminating the seal edge.)  The wide end can be cupped in your hand and the tip can get into tight spaces such as rims and edges. Use the wide end to scrap larger areas.

A clean kitchen is a happy kitchen!  Bon Appetite!

© Marie Boyum, October 9, 2009

When was the last time you felt you had the funds to get away?  Many people are taking very short, close to home trips or none at all.  With just a bit of creativity you can save money and “get away” without going far or even leaving home.

It may go without saying that if you are traveling, pack your own food to save money.  Not just the snacks for the car, but sandwiches and muffins for lunch and breakfast.  You don’t need to grab the “travel” sizes or the individually wrapped muffins you pay a fortune for, wrap them up at home and dig out that old Thermos.  Don’t have one?  I have seen so many at rummage sales and Goodwill stores for a little bit of nothing, anyone should be able to find one.

When was the last time you camped in your living room?  Have kids?  Mine used to love taking the cushions off the couch and creating a fort.  Lay out blankets on the floor and have a picnic.  That idea is not just for kids as it can be very romantic with two adults.  Turn off or down the lights, cover up the TV with a blanket and bring flashlights, sleeping bags or extra blankets and grab a great book on stargazing from the library.

Don’t put away the swimsuits yet, have a in-house beach party!  No, you may not want to cart in sand, but you could put some in a large tub (if you want to play as an adult or you have well-disciplined children;) it’s very therapeutic to draw and play in the sand.

There’s no need to get down as the weather gets cold, or the finances look a bit shy.  “Get away” in your own house (use a room you hardly ever go in for a change) and see how creative you can be.  Have fun!

These are just a few ideas to get you started, I’m sure you can think of more, and when you do, write me and let me know how great it was and just think of all the money you’ll save!

© Marie Boyum, October 1, 2009

Although I realize not everyone thinks like me (and I’m sure in many ways that is a good thing!); I have to say I tend to negate ideas I feel everyone may already be doing.  It has, although, come to my attention that it is a good idea to state basic thrifty ideas as a reminder, as well as, a helpful tip for those that may not always think as thrifty as I.

So, here is Thrifty Household Tip # 9 :

After using all the margarine or butter, cottage cheese, yogurt and any other foods that come in plastic tubs with lids, wash and save for leftover storage.  You can freeze cookies, soups (just leave enough air space for expansion to avoid overflow) and whatever else fits in each container and can be frozen.  They work great for storage in the refrigerator; just remember to label with masking tape and a marker so you know what is in the container, as well as the date when it was put in the refrigerator.

Do you get meats and cheeses from the grocer deli department?  Most times, they come in zipper bags.  Once the last slice is used instead of automatically reaching for the sandwich bags, re-use the deli bag.  Those small things may not add up to huge savings dollar wise, but you are helping save one more thing from going in the landfill and if everyone only does that once, it will add up to a huge savings for the environment.

So, before you toss, think of the cost; is there a way to use that for something else?  Not sure?  Write me and I’ll help you think of creative ways to re-use what you are going to throw away.  Together, we can save money and the environment- a true win-win situation!

© Marie Boyum, September 19,2009

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