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Here at Fulfilled for Less, I believe that we don’t need a bunch of “stuff” to make us happy. I’m excited to talk about why frugal simplicity is a great thing, and how to save money on essentials through frugal living!
Some people set out to live frugally as a means to an end, or as a short term fix for going through a lean financial season. But many have found the joy that frugal living can bring, and want to stick with it in the long run!
Whatever your reasons for wanting to live a frugal life, here are a few practical ways you can substitute in different areas of your life, without even feeling like you’re sacrificing!
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Switch to wool dryer balls
They last for a thousand plus loads, saving you from having to purchase expensive dryer sheets. They also reduce drying time, saving you on your electric bill each month! Finally, they’re a natural alternative to dryer sheets that are so much better for you. This one is a no-brainer! Add some to your next Amazon shipment here.
Change up your grocery shopping routine
For the longest time, I would go to the grocery store every week and load up on what sounded good for dinners for the week. I’ve never been particularly gifted at cooking or shopping, so I thought I was doing pretty good by wanting to cook at home anyway.
I’ve recently started being more strategic with our grocery shopping, and it’s made a huge difference! I actually look at the store flyers instead of throwing them away, and I get a plan together before I step foot into the store. I choose what to buy (especially meat) based on what’s on sale. And when my grocery store has their penny sales (buy one, get one for a penny) I am sure to stock up my freezer so we can save even more on our other store trips throughout the month.
Use your library
If you’re a book junkie like me, you know how expensive those hardcovers can be! I used to buy books pretty frequently, but now I save purchases for special times, and get the rest of my books free at the library. The library is just short of heaven to a frugal living person.
We moved to a new town recently so I got to sign up for a new library card, and I was amazed at all the services even my small-town library offered! I can reserve books online, rent DVDs, and even listen to audiobooks for free through an app. If you haven’t visited your library lately, check back in and see what all they have to offer. I love all the story-times and activities they have for kids too. Free entertainment anyone?
Hang dry your clothes
This one is a great way to spend some more time outside in the fresh air and to save you money.
Borrow this tip from your grandma and dry your clothes on a line instead of in the dryer. You don’t even have to do this with all your clothes to see savings. Start with towels and sheets and see how you like it. Eventually you can work your way up to the rest of your laundry if you like!
Use up the bits and pieces
A big part of frugal living is not letting good things go to waste. I think we see this a lot with leftovers (especially produce.)
If you’ve got some extra veggies leftover that you don’t quite know what to do with, make some soup. Simmer the veggies in broth or tomato soup, and throw in some ground meat or pasta to beef it up some more. You can also throw leftover spinach, kale, etc. into a smoothie for an easy boost of greens!
Entertain at home
Make home your favorite place to be! Instead of going out to dinner or a movie, enjoy them at home. Cook something a little more special, or skip the cooking and have a finger food night. Rent a new release from the library or Redbox (or enjoy an old favorite from your shelf.) All a night needs to feel special is a little intentionality. Light candles, put your popcorn in a fancy bowl, and buy that movie theater candy from the dollar store.
It’s also great to entertain others at your home from time to time. Next time you and your friends want to meet up, invite them to your house instead of going out. Ask them to bring an appetizer or dessert, and cook something easy that will stretch like tacos. Enjoy each other’s company over cards or a board game! I don’t think anyone will miss your usual “spot.”
Test out store brands
Make a challenge out of this. Experiment with some of the name brand items you purchase on a regular basis by buying the store brand instead. You’ll find the things you’re definitely not willing to switch on (Kraft mac and cheese for me!) and you’ll find some stuff you actually prefer the store brand to. I love Target’s makeup remover wipes better than any other ones I’ve tried!
Every penny counts when it comes to frugal living
I hope this quick list of frugal swaps has been an inspiration to you. The frugal life is a good one, and it encourages us to slow down and enjoy the simple things in life. Start with a few of these tips and add in more as you go along!
What can you think of to add to the list? Leave a comment down below!