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Money Saving Tips

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Re: Money Saving Tips

Post by Diva Cassie on Sat Dec 20, 2008 2:33 am

I like the premoistened towlettes for removing makeup but they're a bit pricey so I take scissors & cut them in half or even in thirds depending on the size. One package lasts two or even three times as long.

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Re: Money Saving Tips

Post by Diva Cassie on Sat Dec 20, 2008 2:35 am

For those who are using basics for cleaning (baking soda, vinegar, etc.) you can buy baking soda much cheaper at a feed/country store or mill/elevator. Just ask for sodium bicarbonate. It is in a 50 # bag (lasts us a year) that says rumen normalizer or something. I wouldn't cook with it, as it is feed grade, but it works just as well as the boxed stuff for cleaning and laundry. 4# box at WalMart $2.12 (53 cents per pound) vs. 50# bag at feed store $12.99 (just under 26 cents per pound). Maybe split with a friend; stores nicely in pails with lids.

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Re: Money Saving Tips

Post by Diva Cassie on Sat Dec 20, 2008 2:37 am

I have found that for work clothing, shopping at the end of January is best. This year I got tons of $160 - $200 suits and career dresses for anywhere from $12 to $39 each.

Because most are 2 or 3 pc sets they can be turned into summer wear for the office also by just adding a different shoe or blouse, etc...

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Re: Money Saving Tips

Post by Diva Cassie on Sat Dec 27, 2008 9:57 pm

I save change and have been doing it for years. It is for my special treats. I actually went to Alaska on change saved. I bought my digital camera for ebay. a bicycle and many other presents for myself. I felt I was not using my household money or bill money. You will be surprised how it adds up. When in a store I will ask for 4 quarters as part of my change and it goes into jar.

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Re: Money Saving Tips

Post by Diva Cassie on Sat Dec 27, 2008 9:58 pm

If you are going on vacation, instead of leaving your house empty, rent it out. There might be people out there that would like to vacation in your town.

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Re: Money Saving Tips

Post by Diva Cassie on Sat Dec 27, 2008 9:59 pm

If you have DITCHES out in front of your home that are maintained by the county (or parish) ~ You can ask them to DUMP THE ORGANIC DEBRIS they scoop out of the ditch - into the front of your yard (they will need easy access) + then tip them a twenty!

GREAT FOR COMPOST / MULCH ADDITIVE!

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Re: Money Saving Tips

Post by Diva Cassie on Sat Dec 27, 2008 10:05 pm

We was talking tonight about what bills we had and what we have now and the total that we saved since 2002 per year. Since we started changing the way we lived and what we needed or what we can live without, we have droped our total bills a total of over 8000.00 a year to less than 1000.00 a month. It can be done but you have to want to do it and not try to keep up with the Jones.

We both had a new car or a truck, cable, cell phones and so on. So we sat down one night and went through EVERYTHING. Then it came down to getting rid of things that we don't need. First off was the truck and car. Took both back to the dealer and said they was yours and never had another payment on them. Cell phones was easy. Now just one phone bill and it is about 30.00 a month.
Our light bill was out of sight so we changed EVERY light buld to the new ones and dropped our light bill 22.00 first month. Then we unplug EVERYTHING that is not in use, like computer, washing machine, tv , dryer and so on. That cut it right at 17.00 a month. Now since we don't sell on ebay no more and the computer is not on all day as it was before that dropped another 15.00 a month.
We got rid of the cable tv and saved 56.00 a month. Then we got rid of the cable internet this year and went to phone line and that went from 66.00 a month down to 15.00 a month. There is more that we did but I haven't got all night , just some of the things we did.

Since we have cut so much my wife quit here job of 32000.00 a yearin 2002 and now is a stay home cook and saver and loves every second of it. She is the one that started all of our cutting back on things in 2002.

My wife dries all our cloths out side in the summer. It don't save a lot but 2-3.00 a week on the gas and electric bill, and it up for a month 8-12.00 a month x 8 months = 64-96.00 a year. Put it in the bank.

We heat the house with wood, piped in. The first year was the cost but after that it costs us about 100.00-150.00 a year to heat the house and my furniture refinishing shop. Put the savings in the bank of just last winter of over 1500.00

Our food bill was over 180.00 a week now we spend at most during the summerless than 80.00 a month to the most of around 150.00 a month. Put the rest in the bank.

We cook just about everything from scratch and it is better for you. Like I said before we cook out just about 4-5 times a week and most days 2 times each day.


We grow all our own fruit and veggies. We do get some things like a soda once in a while but not very much.

Just about everything we grow is heirloom so we save seeds and replant the next year, again a savings of not buying seeds every year, unless we try something new that we don't have. Just like the mator out break a few weeks ago. If the would quit messing with the dna with the food things would be better, like fish dna in some veggies. Like some of the soybeans that have roundup in the bean, now where is that roundup going to end up that is still in that bean, in vegatable oil that you cook with, items cooked with at stores, in your food that you buy , in your meat you buy and so on. Just a couple reasons to grow your own food.

Try washing your hair with ivory bar soap, you will not buy shampoo again.

I like cold showers so that saves on the water heater.

We cut our own hair , and it goes in the garden.

We DO NOT buy anything such as endust and so on. She cleans EVEYTHING with a damp rag. Cleans better and don't weaken the finish at all. Throw all that junk away.

How many of you have fans? Have any of you had one of the old brass blade fans? We have 2 of them and they use LESS juice than the new ones -plus they move 100 x the air. If you want to get one make sure that the amps is less than one ,both ours are .70 and they use 84 watts. The new ones use more juice and push less air. So you use the air for your house less so you save money there.

Since we don't buy anything in cans or bottles our trash bill is gone. When we get gas I dump it in the barrel at the station. About the size of 1 walmart sack a month.

Ask you insurance man/woman to pay for it once a year on your house and get the 1000.00 deductiable. You will be surprised how much you can save that way.

So guys and gals I have had all the good stuff new cars and trucks and so on and thought I was living the good life, not any more. When you can do it yourself and save money it makes you feel good. I set back and put money in the bank while others are paying for there new cars and grip they can't do anything anymore. Just to impress their freinds, I would rather have the money in MY pocket then giving it to someone else.

You and your family has to set down and make a list of what you can do without and go from there. Start small or go for the top one and go from there. Food is a easy one - keep track of everything for 3-4 months right down to a candy bar- I mean everything. Then see what you can do without, what you can make and what you can grow. If you have a 4x4 area or larger that gets sun, plant something that you can eat. We live on a lot 105 x 175 and we grow about everything we need plus all my work is done here too.

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Re: Money Saving Tips

Post by Diva Cassie on Sat Dec 27, 2008 10:29 pm

1. Ditch the home phone and use just a cell phone. If you must have a home phone, get Vonage so you can have all the features (voicemail, caller ID, etc) included instead of being little add-ons.

2. Buy things when they are on sale and stock up.

3. Downgrade or get entirely get rid of your Cable TV or Dish service. Despite protests from your kids, once you have no TV, you don't miss it that much. I got tired of paying for TV service a while ago and once I got rid of it, I could only get a few channels off the air and there was never anything on them, so I just never turned the TV on anymore. I sold all of my TVs in the last garage sale and I honestly don't miss them.

4. Mow the grass less often. If you have a big yard, mowing it every 4 days uses alot of gas. Mow it every other week instead.

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Re: Money Saving Tips

Post by Diva Cassie on Sat Dec 27, 2008 10:46 pm

If you like to watch new-release movies, skip the cinema, where movie tickets are about $10 each. I don't even know what popcorn and a coke costs these days. I haven't been to the cinema in YEARS.

We have movie nights. My family and friends take turns renting movies and we all gather at one person's home to watch them. Each guest brings some dish or snack for the movie party. To make things fun, we consider the theme of the movie to create the theme for our party. When we watch the Harry Potter movies, we wear witch's hats and eat magic bars and drink witch's brew.

We recently gathered at my home for The Bucket List (fabulous movie by the way). I served chips in black buckets (kettles from Halloween decor). And we used up some of the black napkins, plates, and plasticware left over from my brother's Over the Hill party in Apr.

We have so much more fun than going to the cinema. We can talk during the movie and pause and rewind as needed. It's much more comfortable with a big variety of healthy foods in addition to the chips and dip. And we each save a few bucks.

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Re: Money Saving Tips

Post by Diva Cassie on Sat Dec 27, 2008 11:03 pm

Learn to separate needs from wants.
I need a sweater because it's cold--- I want a red Abercrombie and Fitch sweater because it's cool (LOL)
I can get a great red sweater at Target or check out the local thrift store.

Eat in--- better food and no tipping! Learn to prepare simple fast meals at home--- there are TONS of books and websites to help with this. A crockpot can have a hot meal on the table when you walk in the door. Get one with a removable liner for easy clean up--- it also allows you to prep a meal the night before. Make a big batch of your favorites and freeze for a fast convenient meal.

Cut out soda and chips---- expensive and unhealthy. Bottled water is a ripoff---- two of the leading brands are actually tap water. Look for PWS in the fine print that's PUBLIC WATER SOURCE. Use refillable bottles and take it with you.

Get the most bang for the buck. Slamming down a Starbucks everyday can slam your budget pretty hard. My husband and I enjoy a venti caffe at our local Barnes and Noble and spend a couple of hours reading the magazines and chatting------ a pretty fun evening out for under 4 dollars.

We chose Netflix over cable or going out to the theater. Pop our own popcorn and have a great evening.


Go with store brands and sale items--- this makes a huge dent in your grocery bill. Stock up on staples when they're on sale. Learn to balance your time and money against the use of certain convenience foods based on your own time and money budget. Shop with a list to avoid impulse purchases.

Keep an inventory of what's in the freezer. Don't buy more chicken if you've still got four month old chicken in there!

Check out the local paper for free or low cost activities in your area.

BEWARE of carrying credit card debt. That 100 dollar bargain could end up costing you 300 dollars by the time you pay it off. I use an Amazon visa card that on which we NEVER carry a balance. I hoard the amazon points til the end of the year for Christmas shopping.

Pay bills on time. Finance charges add up and reconnect fees can be hefty. Don't be afraid to seek help from LEGITIMATE nonprofit credit counselling agencies. PLUS a bad credit score can trigger higher interest charges on credit cards car loans and when negotiation interest on mortgages.

Do budget for some fun. Inviting friends for dinner, a nice family dinner out, seeing that superbigscreen blockbuster on the big screen--- or start saving for something special a big screen tv or a vacation. When there's a reward for saving money you'll find the family more willing to get onboard.

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Re: Money Saving Tips

Post by Diva Cassie on Sun Jan 04, 2009 12:49 am

I really LOVE movies, but I don't rent them. I get them free at the Library. The Library is a block from the Post Office, so when I go to mail stuff I swing by the Library on my way back and can get 3 at a time and keep them for a week. My library has a huge audio-visual department in a building by itself and the selection is quite good. And I can even reserve a movie if I want something that's out. They send me an email when it comes back in.

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Re: Money Saving Tips

Post by Diva Cassie on Sun Jan 04, 2009 12:51 am

Newspaper is good mulch. And so is the shredded paper from your office. It will biodegrade in time and enhance your soil.

Newspaper is also a good weed barrier for new beds. After I've killed a patch of bermuda where I want a new bed, I add a thick layer of newspapers. I get them for free from our recycling center. They'll give me all I want. Then I add mulch on top of that so the paper won't blow away and because the mulch looks better. Then I plant.

I also add fruit and veggie scraps right into my gardens. I don't have the room or time for a compost heap, so I just compost right in my gardens. I just bury the scraps under the mulch so they're not unsightly.

I also get fresh mulch from a neighbor who is a tree trimmer. He'll drop me all I want for free. He has to pay to dump it at the landfill and that's out of his way. He can just drop it at my house on his way home. People have told me fresh mulch will burn up my plants, but it never has. I've been doing it for about 5 years now. I only apply it about 5 inches thick and it does just fine for me. Plus, when it's fresh, it smells divine!

If you live near a starbucks or other coffee house, ask them for their coffee grounds and mix into your gardens.

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Re: Money Saving Tips

Post by Diva Cassie on Sun Jan 04, 2009 12:52 am

I have tubs full of fishing worms living and growing in wet torn up newpapers. It's all they need (plus a handful of potting soil) to live. Keep it constantly moist, never dripping wet. You can do it in your basement like I do.

They eat the paper and turn it into the darkest, blackest, best compost fertilizer you'll ever use.

Plus, if you fish, you'll have tons of free worms and nightcrawlers. If not, you can sell them to fishermen. They multiply faster than rabbits.

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Re: Money Saving Tips

Post by Diva Cassie on Sun Jan 04, 2009 12:52 am

But be careful with coffee grounds - sometimes, if they are very acidic, they will kill the plants rather than help them. I fertilize only the pine/spruce trees and bushes with coffee grounds. I made the mistake of believing someone on the net who said that coffee grounds are okay and I killed half my lawn!

Also - be careful of what organic material you put in compost piles. Some plant scraps - like black walnut shells - can also kill off your garden.

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Re: Money Saving Tips

Post by Diva Cassie on Sun Jan 04, 2009 12:53 am

Freeze your bread heels, when you get a handful, you can toast them, break them up + use the crumbs in meatloaf or whatever needs breadcrumbs. Keep adding the bread heels to the same wrapping in your freezer so as not to waste the wrap!

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Re: Money Saving Tips

Post by Diva Cassie on Sun Jan 04, 2009 12:55 am

Look for yardages of cotton fabric at auctions or garage sales. Even if the colors are wild, they can be used for fun summer pj's and short sets. I made some pj's this weekend and shortened a pattern intended for hospital scrubs. Dust off the sewing machine, save a few dollars, and have some fun.
This pair of pj's cost about 50 cents to make. That's one less thing on the shopping list this week.

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Re: Money Saving Tips

Post by Diva Cassie on Sun Jan 04, 2009 1:00 am

Look for yardages of cotton fabric at auctions or garage sales. Even if the colors are wild, they can be used for fun summer pj's and short sets. I made some pj's this weekend and shortened a pattern intended for hospital scrubs. Dust off the sewing machine, save a few dollars, and have some fun.
This pair of pj's cost about 50 cents to make. That's one less thing on the shopping list this week.

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Re: Money Saving Tips

Post by Diva Cassie on Sun Jan 04, 2009 1:00 am

You can also use cardboard. It's great to actually kill out the grass and weeds. Just lay it over the patch you want to transform. Be sure to overlap the edges well, so the grass won't grow between two pieces. Pile mulch on top to hold it down. And leave it for a few months. It will smother out anything underneath. And then it biodegrades and enriches the soil.

Your recycling center will probably give you some boxes. Furniture and appliance stores will let you raid their dumpsters for nice big pieces.

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Re: Money Saving Tips

Post by Diva Cassie on Sun Jan 04, 2009 1:02 am

When the dollars are low and you need to give a wedding gift, you might want to try what I did years ago. I haven't done one in a while but here is the general idea. The cost is very little as long as you don't mind a few hours work. It probably won't take as much time as driving to the mall, shopping, and fighting the traffic back home:

Trace a simple heart pattern on white paper. You may want several shapes and sizes or just one. I usually used one only and a small size about 3" tall when stuffed. Use colors and fabrics the bride likes. If she's an old fashioned gal, surprise her with feedsack hearts or vintage fabrics decorated with lace. You may have everything needed in your stash.

Machine sew the front and back heart pieces together, leaving a small gap that you can get a finger or two in. Turn and stuff. Whip stitch closed. Fill a pretty basket with the hearts or an antique china piece from your family or whatever suits your fancy. If a basket, the handle can be decorated with leftover bits of ribbon. Wind it closely around the handle. Decorate each end of the handle with pretty bows.

If you have easy access to a store, put in a package of heart candies or something similiar. Heart lollipops if you can find them.

Each basket can be different. A medium sized basket may take 30 hearts or so.

I had many requests for these and had a blast making them. I did one for our daughter before she left for college and she still talks about it. There is just something about hearts that make people smile.

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Re: Money Saving Tips

Post by Diva Cassie on Sun Jan 04, 2009 1:02 am

I, too, save old bread and use it to make bread crumbs. Anymore, I will stretch ground meat using them (I remember my mom doing the same thing in the "old days" and just add a touch more seasoning. We all grew up healthy and full).

I also buy any "manager's specials" I find at the stores. If it isn't yucky or brown, I buy it and freeze it for future use. Have gotten some really great stuff that way, and can often make really nice meals for pennies on the dollar.

A fantastic example - my local Gerbes store (subsidiery of Krogers) had packs of Tandoori Naan bread marked down to .25 per pack. They were due to "expire" in about a week. The original price on them was $2.25 per pack. Well, I bought them all.

I have a deep freezer - that thing has paid for itself may time over since I bought it ten years ago! Anyway, it says right on the naan package that you can freeze for at least 6 months. My kids and I love it! And it turns out great after defrosting! I also bought 6 packages of Oscar Meyer cold cuts turkey/ham mix at 60% off. I grabbed all of those, too.

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Re: Money Saving Tips

Post by Diva Cassie on Sun Jan 04, 2009 1:03 am

Keep an eye open for delicate, unchipped china cups and saucers at garage sales. They usually sell for 25 cents or so. Buy a few and put them in a safe place.
If a coworker or friend is sick and you'd like to give them a little something to cheer them up, fill a cup with some hard candies, a few chocolate pieces, a tea bag and maybe an envelope of cappuccino mix. Or small homemade cookies and some herb tea bags. whatever suits your taste.
I bought a package of green plastic wrap on sale and put it aside for such things. Some wrap over the whole thing and tucked under the saucer will keep everything in place.
I took one of these to a 90 year old lady and you'd think she'd been given the moon. It's these simple things that mean so much.

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Re: Money Saving Tips

Post by Diva Cassie on Fri Jan 09, 2009 11:36 pm

If you have stainless steel appliances, instead of buying the expensive stainless steel cleaner, use white vinegar! It will clean it and shine it all in one step!

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Re: Money Saving Tips

Post by Diva Cassie on Fri Jan 09, 2009 11:38 pm

When heating something on stovetop ALWAYS USE A POTLID!
That cuts time waaaay down = less electric / gas used.
I tear paper towels in half as I use them. They are MUCH bigger then you ever really need.
Im fortunate enough that I can afford to really stock up when something I use is on sale. Kmart has Folgers coffee on sale fairly often and when they do I buy 10 cans which saves me anywhere from 30 - 50 dollars (depending on sale price).
Im also planning to buy a TON of canned food items & staples (detergent,etc)-- with gas prices going up and up so will prices for EVERYTHING and now with the flooding food will go up even more.
I have always bought clothing for my grandson at the END of the season -- HUUUUUGE SAVINGS.
I was thinking the other day that if a tee shirt for him (he wears size 5T)
is about $5 now (not on sale) then when he's ready for size 8 or 10 the regular price could very well be 8 or 10 dollars each so Ive been buying shirts/underwear/socks for him that will go in the closet for 3 or 4 years but which in the end will save me alot of money.
I dont buy pants because its hard to guess what he might wear (slim, regular, who knows?) in a few years.

I also cook quantities enough for at least two meals -- pretty much the same amount of cooking time but much less electric/gas usage.

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Re: Money Saving Tips

Post by Diva Cassie on Fri Jan 09, 2009 11:47 pm

On another note if anyone had heart burn a lot. Don't take the purple little pill or any of that other crap. Eat pickles that has vinegar or take a teaspoon of apple cider vinegar.

I also heard that you can wash/shower with vinegar - especially women, it keeps you....um...."balanced" in certain places. It's supposed to be better for your skin than soap.

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Re: Money Saving Tips

Post by Diva Cassie on Fri Jan 09, 2009 11:49 pm

there are hundreds of uses for vinegar.

Making sweet pickles, taking white rings out of wood floors, I use it out in my shop when I am gluing boards together and one slips and I don't see it in time, put a little on the joint and in about 5 min. it will come apart to reglue again. We clean all our glass windows with it. Use it in the rinse cycle, use it on our arm pits for instead of rollons or spray. All the rollons and spray do is swell up your pours in your skin so you will not sweat, which is bad for you and your arm pits.

We picked another 2 gal cherrys today and we have enough cherries for this year. Monday when I go get furniture stripper we are going to get about 4-5 gal of blueberries and put them in the freezer. Picking red and black raspberries now too.

We eat a lot of fruit. Just so far this year we put 59 pints of strawberries, 14 quarts of cherries plus what we picked tonight and so far 6 quarts of raspberries.

Had a bunch of windows gave to me so now when I get them all home I will be building us a green house, a bigger one. That way we can have stuff growing just about all year round.

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