No Need for a TVDue to a divorce that left me with no retirement at age 60 I do not pay for cable TV or any other TV service. I have to watch every penny and try to create some kind of retirement plan. I love to read and my garden and yard keep me busy except in the winter and then I catch up on home repairs. I don't miss TV.
Being Frugal Around My HomeGrowing up in Kentucky wasn't that easy as a child. However, as an adult, life was easier and wonderful until I ended up sick and my life changed. I am a single mom raising 2 teenage children and had to stop working and go on disability. How in the world could I make ends meet on the small checks that came in the mail once a month?
What Are We Saving All This Money For?I was reflecting this morning, "what are we all actually saving this money for?" I guess there are as many diverse answers as there are readers here: Are we saving to reduce our bills and get out of debt? To buy a house? To take a special holiday?
Keeping Bees Away from a Hummingbird...We have hummingbird feeders and its horrible to see the little hummingbirds trying to eat at the feeders with all the bees. No matter how many feeders I put out the bees are all over the feeders.
Solutions for Slippery SidewalksWinter weather can quickly make sidewalks and footpaths difficult and dangerous for pedestrians to navigate. Over the years, several effective and economical deicing products have been developed to give us a safer foothold.
How to Grow ColeusColeus has remained a popular plant ever since it rose to favor during the Victorian age. The leaves of this inexpensive and versatile plant come in a bewildering array of colors, patterns, shapes, and sizes.
Get Into Your Growing Zone - USDA Plant...As every gardener knows, different plants are adapted to growing well in specific climates. Plant hardiness zones help to define the optimum growing climates. By knowing what hardiness zone you live in, you can properly select the plants that are best suited to your growing conditions.
Do-It-Yourself Trash Can CompostingComposting is an easy, economical way to keep nutrient-rich plant food at the ready. Not only is it good for your plants, if you pay by the can for waste removal, it can also be good for your garbage bill!
Struggling with my Small BudgetI have been working hard on my credit score. I had bad vision up until yesterday when I got my glasses. I was able to read the fine print on some bills. I went to read the billing statements and found the interest rates horrible.
Using Smartphone and Tablets To Save MoneyRecently I've been researching ways to save money shopping online, in stores, and how to find the best rebate offers available. One of the best ways that I love to earn a little extra cash is with my smartphone and tablet. Here are some great tips for you to save money, find rebates, and get cash back when you shop for food.
My Frugal Life - Lessons From The AmishI am going to start this by saying that I believe I was born in the wrong era or else I was given up for adoption by an Amish family! I truly believe that being frugal helps simplify my life. Go figure, when some of the things I do to save a dime are more time consuming!
The Significance or Meaning of a...I actually found out a tree story about my brother and his new wife. I guess her grandparents got a tree for one of their wedding gifts and it was a Japanese Maple so wherever they moved to they would dig up the tree and take it with them. So, I thought that might be a good idea.
When is Enough Enough?A friend of mine, for as long as I can remember, would say, "A loaf of bread costs what it costs, and you can eat only so much bread. Why would you buy more bread then you could ever use?". In my younger years I would chuckle to myself.
Adult Pads as Alternative to "Puppy Pads"Most everyone I know owns a pet. They can be expensive but I try to cut corners and save where I can. There is nothing like the unconditional love of an animal. I rescued my dog on what was, to be her last day.
How to Grow Houseplants in WaterYou don't need to have a green thumb to grow houseplants in water. Even if you've killed every houseplant growing in soil that you have ever had, your success is almost guaranteed when growing them in water.
How to Bring Light Into Shady Garden SpacesSome corners of the garden seem to be in a state of perpetual darkness. Cast into shade by a nearby building, shed, or even the shadow of your own house, these areas present a unique and difficult gardening challenge.
Growing Roses in ContainersHave you always wanted to grow beautiful roses but can't find the extra garden space? Are there varieties you want to try that are not hardy to your zone? Do you wish you had greater ability to move color to where you need it throughout the growing season?
Pinch Those Pennies When You're YoungMy great aunt and uncle were very frugal. They made their own furniture out of pressed wood. They had a schematic of the property, where every wire was buried outside, location of all piping, cable etc. They ordered kitchen cabinets to put together themselves and bought parts for repairs in bulk; plumbing, sprinkler, electricity, basically anything that could break and need repaired. They bought the best quality gloss enamel paint so everything was easy to maintain with washing.
Using Dwarf Conifers in the GardenDwarf conifers can be grown in compact beds or containers and are easy to maintain. This makes them particularly useful for gardeners with limited space. Incredibly diverse in color, texture, and form, their miniature stature allows you the luxury to grow several different species in a small area.
Fencing Your Vegetable GardenHow many times have you carefully planted a vegetable garden, only to have the fruits of your labor eaten by wildlife? The only real solution is to erect a fence that keeps the animals out.
Obsessed with CouponsTo say that I'm obsessed with extreme couponing is almost an understatement. What started as a special television program in January has become a weekly program, teaching viewers how to become extreme couponers who take home four carts of groceries for under $50.
Organizing an ApartmentIf you live in a small apartment, you might find that organizing it and keeping it free of clutter can be difficult. Where do you put all of your stuff when you don't have enough room to store it in?
Old Fashioned Soda Fountain Treats (Part 2 -...Vanilla Milk Shake (White Cow): 4 scoops vanilla ice cream, 1 Tbsp. vanilla extract, 1 1/2 cups milk. Put into a blender container and blend until smooth.
Keeping Weeds Out of Flower BedsHow can I keep grass and weeds out of my flower bed? I have a beautiful flower bed and am having trouble keeping the weeds manageable. this is a direct sunlight area. What products do you suggest we use?
Finally Starting Out Being ThriftyMy partner and I are on SSDI with SNAP and I am enforcing a budget for 4 people in this household. We consume a lot of tea so we get the gallon bags on our main shopping trip. My partner brews it up in a large Dutch oven like pot and makes 2 gallons out of that, one for him and one for the rest of us.
Affording Real FoodRecently, I was talking with a friend about the difficulty of feeding our growing families affordably but also in a healthy way. She was talking about the extra cost of buying and preparing "real food", meaning not processed and mostly from scratch. I started wondering if it is really more expensive?
Hydroculture: Growing Your Houseplants in WaterWho needs dirt? Not your houseplants, at least not all of them. Many can be cultivated using a technique called Hydroculture, where soil is replaced with water and a liquid fertilizer, and a clay aggregate is used to support the plant's roots.
Ten Things to Do with a Blind CompanionSomeone recently asked me what I like to do. I didn't have an answer then, but I've been thinking about it. I'm not into extreme sports like skydiving or mountain climbing, but I have read of blind people who do those things. Here are some ideas for the rest of us.
Things To Consider Before Growing...Growing climbing ivy has its pros and cons. It's easy to grow. It looks beautiful. If you're thinking about planting climbing ivy near your house or in your garden, here are some things to consider.
Growing WisteriaFew plants can rival the dramatic spring beauty of a wisteria vine in full bloom. With the right growing conditions and some occasional pruning, wisteria is a beautiful, fast growing vine - and a worthwhile addition to nearly any garden.
Tips For Growing Moss on RocksTips for getting moss to grow on rocks and planters in your yard. Post your own techniques here.
My Frugal Life: Surviving On Social SecurityI'm retired due to a disability, but because of the career I chose, I have no retirement fund and no pension and must live on Social Security alone. Therefore, frugality has become my middle name. Here in west Michigan, our supermarkets offer remarkable savings every week. They love to BOGO (buy one, get one free!).
Using Old Multi-Pane WindowsCreative used for reusing old multi-pane windows. Post your own ideas here.
Loving FrugalMy frugal life began in about 2006. My mother came to live with us due to having Alzheimer and my finance (hubby now) volunteered to stay home with her. One income meant cutting back.
I Hope You Dance to HeavenMy sister was diagnosed with cancer in the year 2000. She was not expected to live over one year, but God gave us seven years to watch her journey through this cancer and her spiritual journey to Heaven. The last Thanksgiving that my sister was on this Earth, she was wheelchair-bound and I was asked by her to prepare Thanksgiving dinner for her and her family.
My Personal Guide to Frugal LivingEvery person has his/her own way of living. There are different types of people and each one's lifestyle is unique but for sure, we all wanted our lives to be easier to fulfill our desires, to fully enjoy the things we possess and live a better life.
Homemade Kool-aid Playdough RecipesI am looking for recipe to make playdough using koolaid.
Baby Modeling and Beauty PageantsThriftyFun does not run any pageants or hire any models so this page is just for informational purposes. Please do not post your child's photo and email address here for help. There is a lot of good advice on this page and more in the feedback. And remember, all babies are beautiful!
Inexpensive Stepping StonesStepping stones are an easy way to add functional creativity to your garden. Here's a simple and inexpensive way to make your own in just 10 easy steps.
What Do You Do If Your Pet Gets Lost?It is a horrible thing to think about: your pet slips out the door and seems to disappear. How do you get your pet back safe and sound? This timeline can help you out.
Easter Basket IdeasHere are some good thrifty Easter basket ideas that are healthy and fun. Post your own ideas here!
Eat Leftovers And Be GratefulI've made reference in other posts to the fact that, when I was a child, we were quite poor. We didn't have a car. Few families in my neighborhood, did. I think we were the last to get a television.
Sunken Beds for Arid ClimatesIf you garden in an area with poor soil fertility and drainage, you're probably familiar with the advantages of planting in raised beds. Less familiar, however, may be the concept of sunken beds - beds dug down to sit slightly below the soil surface.
Freezing Turnips or ParsnipsA Guide to Freezing Turnips or Parsnips. Select small to medium, firm turnips or parsnips that are tender and have a mild flavor. Look for crisp green tops as an indicator of freshness.
Making Your Own Maple SyrupThe freezing and thawing temperatures of late February and early March signal the start of maple syrup season. Although historians disagree on who was first to tap the tree, the basic recipe for gathering and producing maple syrup has stayed essentially the same for over a thousand years.
Planting a Memorial GardenLosing a loved one is never easy. For those of us left behind, creating a living tribute in the form of a memorial garden offers us a place to grieve, reflect, and pay homage to our loved one's memory.
Two Easy-to-Make Compost BinsNo matter how much you pay for a compost bin, breaking down organic waste requires four things: water, air, a few naturally occurring microbes and a fair amount of patience.
A Gardener's Guide to CompostingComposting recycles organic matter into a nutrient-rich soil amendment. Although the finished product is a complex mixture of organic matter, bacteria and enzymes, the process of making compost isn't complex at all.
A Fortnight's Lost IncomeThis is a story from my past, which taught me that when you have to you can do it! It was the day after payday and I had the cash on the table, working out where it would be going. There was a knock at the door so I hid the cash. It was an hour or so before I got back to my budgeting task. Unfortunately, I had forgotten where I'd put the money!
My Frugal Life: Planning AheadI used to be proud of being spontaneous, of living on a whim. Now that I can no longer afford to have anything I want at the moment that I want it, I have come to savor the far deeper pleasure of expectation, of waiting for something and looking forward to it.
Preventing Winter Damage to Trees and ShrubsIf you live in a climate where winters are severe, you've probably already discovered that the snow and cold weather can cause severe damage to trees and shrubs.
Using Leftover Pork RoastHere are tips for using leftover pork roast from ThriftyFun community: Take your leftovers, toss 'em in the crockpot with a jar of salsa, and shred it up for pulled pork sandwiches. Cook on Low for 8 hours, or High for four.
Eight Reasons Your Lilac Bush Won't BloomAs far as a shrubs go, lilacs are a dream come true for the gardener. Once established, these landscaping beauties will throw out heavenly-scented, long-lasting blooms for years.
Living Within Your MeansNow on a very small fixed income, I kept finding myself running out of money before the end of the month to pay my monthly bills and living expenses. So I wound up drawing money out of my savings account every month to pay bills until my next monthly check came in. I realized that my savings account was shrinking at an alarming rate. In looking at my lifestyle, I realized I had to change some of my habits.
Recycled Dinners as Easy as 1-2-3As grocery prices rise, the skill of recycling leftovers becomes even more valuable (as if it weren't already crucial in most family meal planning.) To ease the strain of grocery shopping as well as meal planning, try a 1-2-3 recycling plan to lengthen the life of your leftovers.
Using ArtichokesArtichokes are in the thistle group, native to the Mediterranean. First brought to the Americas in 1600 but not popular until the 1920's. Often known as globe artichokes, not to be confused with Jerusalem artichokes. Artichokes are high in Vitamin B, C and don't contain fat.
Treating Common Insect Problems in...If your houseplants have been given all the food, water, and sun they need and they still seem to lack vigor, you may want to inspect them closely for insect pests. Insects and mites can appear on houseplants at any time of the year and they are not always easy to see.
Game Rules: 7 Hand RummyEvery time my family gets together for Thanksgiving or Christmas, we all look forward to AFTER the meal. It is at this time we play 7 Hand Rummy, a card game that has been a part of these holidays for us since before I was born.
Reuse Sofa Cushions As A Pet BedWe recently got a new sofa, and found out the old sofa cushions fit perfectly in the XL doggie crate we have for our Lab/St Bernard. So we kept them, and will use them as a nice, sofa-like bed for Barli.
Shopping on a Low-Income BudgetIt gets harder each month, when the prices of food keep climbing up, and your money coming in does not! Well, that is why I have to shop frugally. I make 3 lists.
Winterizing Your Gas-Powered Lawn MowerA well-maintained lawn mower starts effortlessly in the spring, runs cleaner, and helps make yard work just a little bit more enjoyable. Here is a basic overview of how to prepare your gas-powered lawn mower for winter storage.
Pecan Trees With Rotten PecansI live in Alabama and have pecan trees that have produced abundantly for years. But, the last two-year the crop has been rotten and this year I don't see many if any pecans on them. The pecans that have fallen off are rotten with bugs or something. What is the problem and how can I fix it?
Growing Fruit In PotsContainer gardeners (and fruit lovers) rejoice! You don't need a big yard to grow delicious apples, plums, or pears. With the right fruit, the right pot, the right compost and the right care, you can create your own little fruit orchard right on your balcony or terrace.
What to Wear While GardeningThe best clothing to wear while gardening is the kind that feels comfortable while you are reaching, bending, crouching, and sitting.
Cloning Rose BushesHave you ever tried cloning rose bushes? If you have with out success, here is a simple tip that will get you started on your way.
Microwave Safety TipsSeveral times, I used the microwave oven, only to have pitted "microwavable bowls," and the inside of the microwave, a food mess. I discovered on my own, to use a smaller "heat" setting for a longer period of time.
Things to Consider When Building a Garden ShedGarden sheds are valuable for storing garden tools and other garden equipment, but before you set out to build one (or buy one), there are several things you will want to consider.
Breed Information: Bernese Mountain DogThe Bernese Mountain Dog is a large, self-confident and attractive breed with a hardy frame and moderately long silky coat. They were originally bred for work in the farm areas of Switzerland and are known for being calm-natured and people-orientated.
Dehydrating Fruits and VegetablesThe next time you go to the grocery store and they are having a great sale or your garden is overproducing, try my friend Amy's trick for easy winter soups.
Late Winter PruningProper pruning is a good way to help your plants and shrubs stay healthy while preparing them for budding. It's best to prune shrubs that bloom in the summer and fall in the late winter or early spring prior to bud development.
Hanging Baskets for Attracting...Hanging baskets are a great way to attract hummingbirds to your garden. Once they find your flowers, they will return again and again, to dine on them all season long.
May Day LuncheonWhy not invite your friends to a May Day Luncheon? The foods could be as easy as finger sandwiches and lemonade but I am going to give you a recipe for a really easy and simple quiche and ideas for decorations that will make your May Day party an easy success.
Frame Your Garden With Landscape EdgingLandscape edging is a great way to create clean, well-defined borders between garden spaces, and give your garden a finished appearance. It's also functional-keeping grass out of your plants, while keeping soil, rocks, and mulch from spilling into your lawn.
Pet ChinchillasChinchillas are small rodents native to the Andes Mountain region of South America-Peru, Bolivia, Chile, and Argentina. Domesticated species have been bred from a species found exclusively in northern Chile that is easily recognized by its giant ears and long, bushy tail.
Living the Best Frugal Life I CanI will stock up and buy three of anything to keep me from running out too fast. Tonight, they had soap on sale for 99 cents, so I bought 8 bottles. There can never be too much dish soap.
Why Is My $20 Bill Only Worth $5 Bucks?With a $1000.00 balance on your card and $20.00 minimum payment due ($15.00 will be for interest. Only $5.00 will be for the principal to actually pay down the balance. Your new balance is $995.00. Yep! You paid $20.00, but it was only worth $5.00
Frugal Camping TipsMany plans for vacation travel and events have been cancelled this summer, causing a renewed interest in camping trips. Camping is seen as a cheap way to vacation but the costs can really add up if you are not careful and wind up buying forgotten items. Here are some tips to keep your camping trip affordable and enjoyable for all.
Silence Is GoldenWhen I was a child, I would take long walks down unpaved, winding country roads. Much of the land was undeveloped and sometimes there was two, three miles distance between houses. Often, I would hear a cow mooing in a pasture to my right or left, tiny birds chirping happily, even the occasional buzzard or chicken hawk overhead.
Frugality And A Question Of MoralsI recently voiced my opinion, maybe too loudly, on a post about asking for extra condiments when dining out. I felt keeping extra condiments automatically given to you was OK, while asking for extras to increase your at home stockpile was not.
Choosing a Healthy Cooking OilThere are so many different choices for cooking oils. In a large natural foods store, there might be an entire aisle full of bottles and tins from all across the world. With nutritional studies emerging all the time that seemingly contradict each other, it can be hard to know exactly which oil is the best choice for your family. I decided it was time to find out for sure. I'm not an expert, but I thought I would share what I found out.
Coping Skills with Depression and AnxietyA few years ago, I needed help with coping with depression and anxiety. I went to classes to learn. I don't usually tell people this, but it helped me learn so much. It helped me then and it is helping me greatly now! A lot!
Another Day in Quarantine: The Best Day of AllMy day started out about the same. I have to say, I am looking at life a lot more positive these days! That is important for everyone to know. I think we (people) are just adjusting to this way of living. We are so conscientious of the possibility of catching the virus, we have given into the new way of life living in our homes We are at an accepting stage.
My Life Since Being "Quarantined"I'm not complaining at all here! One thing I want to focus on is my attitude. That is, my attitude now. Oh, I was not very happy with all of this in the beginning! Oh no!
Using Up A Surplus of FoodI had an interesting problem recently in regards to food. In response to the coronavirus outbreak, Oregon closed all bars and restaurants in mid March. They could still provide take-out or delivery but many places shut down for the duration. Because this was relatively unexpected, the businesses had a great deal of produce and refrigerated food to get rid of before it went bad.
RepurposeAn artist at heart, my brother loved doing home renovations. He also loved teaching me the basics, like how to use a power drill. This skill has played an essential role in my frugal living. Many of my frugal habits center around repurposing. It is finding another meaning in something, whether it retains its current form or not, and whether it is carefully preserved or eventually discarded.
Living on a BudgetMy boyfriend and I live in Southeastern KY. We are both disabled and living on disability. We have to budget everything, from electricity to groceries, every month. We are members of several store loyalty programs that automatically apply coupons to your purchase, which helps a lot. You can also use clip coupons along with that to add extra savings.
A Green Frugal LifeI've always been a frugal person, following in my Grandma's footsteps. She survived the Depression yet fed her family well. Even a teaspoon of leftover corn at dinner was put in a homemade soup. Pastry scraps were made into the most delicious treats, spread with either cinnamon sugar or jam, then rolled, baked and sprinkled with powdered sugar. From her, we learned how to make delicious meals cheaply.
Living in the BoondocksWe live in the country and it is 45 miles away from any grocery store. The first thing we do is to make a shopping list and only go shopping once a month. Our doctors are 180 miles from our home so, when we have a doctor's appointment, we check the shopping ads for the stores in that town and buy what we know we will use and stock up on those items at those stores.
Cancer: Health Isn't The Only Price You PayHearing a doctor tell you the hard truth, that you have cancer, takes your breath away. After a little while it becomes abundantly clear that the initial shock is compounded by the overwhelming costs involved. It's an added stress to you and your loved ones.
Jeannie Rollins ~ Frugality Without ChoiceMost of us have hard times now and then. Some of us have not just hard times but hard lives. Sometimes we all need something to jolt us back to reality. To a perspective from which we can see ' things really aren't as bad as they seem'. Some have it much worse than you.
The Most Frugal Of All, Free MemoriesWhat is your earliest memory? I will tell you three of mine as I don't know which is earliest. When I was little, the house was not heated past bed time. If the temperature was 10 degrees outside, it was 10 degrees inside, not long after we all went to bed.
13 Items That Almost Always SellThere was an internet meme going around recently that read: "See that clutter in your home? It used to be money." That simple statement was a wow moment for me. OUCH!
Getting the Most of WarrantiesNearly everything that is manufactured has some sort of warranty, although the length can vary greatly. Sellers can also offer extended warranties and credit card purchases may have additional protection as well. But these do you no good if you cannot utilize them before they expire. Here are some tips for making sure you get your money's worth from new purchases.
Be Content With a LittleIn my older years, my situation changed. I was not able to buy the things I thought I wanted or needed. Or thought I needed. Although I can't buy grass fed beef, the ground beef on sale for $2.99 a pound hasn't killed me. The fresh vegetables that grow next door to the organic are $2-$3 cheaper a pound.
Thrift Stores Are Not Created EqualI love thrift stores. My mom took my 5 sisters and me to the same store every time we went to the beach. That store is still there and I still shop there. Almost any thrift store has something I need. But they're not equal.
Living With Less Is MoreI have always been a bit of a cheapskate and as I get older I have grown to realize that I am not a "cheapskate", I am Frugal! And might I say I am proud of it! It started in my 20s.