Friday, April 3, 2009

New Freevorite Things

With all of the talk about the economy, I don't know about you, but we sure feel like we should be spending smarter and saving more. There are small changes I have made over the course of this year. And some cool stuff I have found.
  • I completely gave up my addiction to buying coffee out. Now we buy the Dunkin Donuts big bag at Sam's Club and it is a nice morning routine to get up and make a pot. I don't miss it at all! And 6 cups of coffee brewed each morning costs us 84 CENTS. Not each, that is total, each cup costs 14 cents.
  • We have also, this year gone paper towel and paper napkin free in our house. This was a MAJOR change and we see a difference in the amount of trash we generate, the amount of bulk purchases at Sam's, and we feel good about it!
  • Potty training Molly was also a nice boost to the budget :)
  • I also love music, and love having new music and creating mixes of the music I love. Have you checked out LastFM? This is a free site that you can tag your favorite music and it will create a radio station for you. I am enjoying this A LOT! I use it at work, in the kitchen, etc.
  • We also love movies, we have Netflix, but I have seen that Redbox has a free movie rental code every day. So you can go, use the code, and get a free movie - and you can use the code multiple times a day - you just have to use a different credit card for each rental that day.
  • Books. I love books. But since last fall I have limited what I buy - instead I borrow or steal my dad's. Or I go to the library. I have never really used the library but it is great. I can get books on hobbies I want to start, like baking bread, cake love, sewing, and then return them as needed or use birthday gift cards to get the ones I really think I will use.
  • The library is also great for music. I like listening to different music in the car with the girls and we have been listening to a lot of show tunes that I picked up at the library - lots of Andrew Lloyd Weber. And did you know if they don't have something, they will get it from a different library for you?
  • Doug has been using the library too for TV show DVDs, like Entourage, or some Western show, or some Iraq war show. Don't be like him, return them on time so you don't get charged.
  • We have used Vonage for our phone service for a couple of years, but they raised their prices so we did some shopping and found magicjack - and after a couple rough weeks and tweaking the settings it ROCKS - and is like 20/YEAR.
  • Amazon also has lots of free music downloads, I got a couple of albums, including Dan Zanes kids album - FREE - and they have different free downloads all the time!
  • I have also found some interesting blogs about saving and being frugal:
  • Go Frugal Blog
  • Budgeting 101
  • MotherLoad they have a free friday post about free things to do or get in stores or online.
What are you doing differently, in this economy, that is turning out to be fun?

3 comments:

Lydia said...

I have never had time to stop for coffee in the AM. (The joys of teaching high school!) And I have stopped buying CRAP that I don't need. (Except books) I also have always bought in bulk, used shami clothes in the kitchen for a while, and stock up when things are on sale.
But I have NEVER calculated how much each cup of coffee costs to brew.....CRAZY GEEK!!

3XMom said...

Goodwill. I am a huge goodwill believer. I started shopping there for some fun 80s clothes for a thing I was going to. But I happened to find a really cute work suit - for $5. $5!! Now I am addicted.

Jessica said...

We also dropped the paper towels and Vonage, although paper towles are still needed for abcon grease and cleaning the griddle. Stil, we've been on the same roll of paper towels for at least 3 months now, which is a world record in our house!

Check out paperbackswap.com, swapadvd.com, and swapacd.com...not quite as easy as the library, but it lets you get rid of stuff and in theory, you can keep the book/cd/dvd forever if you want!

Ebay has been the maternity clothes lifesaver for me...my old pants are just not fitting, but I have picked up some 'new' ones, as well as dresses to get me through the horrible humid summer, at a fraction of the cost of going to the store!