Saturday, September 20, 2008

More Cost Cutting Tips

This has been quite a week! Lehman's, AIG, another bank failure (Ameribank) & government bailouts. I've never watched so much programming on the financial news networks before! I think that even if you're in a good financial position, it would be good to institute some cost cutting measures. There will be many people in need in the times to come. Cutting back on some things to save money will allow you to help others even if you don't really need to. Also, please remember that a lot of people are already having a hard time feeding not just themselves but their pets. Most food banks are happy to take donations of pet food.


  1. Cheryl (Copper's Wife) said that her Coinstar machine gives the option of getting an Amazon GC. Amazon has everything so that's a good way to use that change. I checked mine (at Kroger) and I could only donate or cash out.

  2. Chris suggests using empty glass jars with lids to store leftovers etc. Recycle - Reuse!

  3. Paula gave a recipe for toothpowder - equal amounts of sea salt, baking soda, a little ground sage (for teeth whitening). She also said you could use peppermint. She keeps this in a recycled glass spice jar, wets her toothbrush and sprinkles on the powder.

  4. Jen (Fiddle Dee Dee) packs her husband's lunch (leftovers) before they eat dinner. I do the same thing. If I want enough for lunch the next day I have to put it away before we eat. If it's there it gets eaten, if it's not there nobody misses it!

  5. Buy a cheaper brand of coffee. Save the better stuff for weekends or special events.

  6. Use the Pumpkin Spice creamers (both brands have their variety) instead of getting Pumpkin Spice Lattes at Starbucks. It's not exactly the same, but comes close and you can save the Lattes as a treat. There were copykat recipes out there when they first came out with this coffee. All I remember is that you used real canned pumpkin. If you Google "homemade pumpkin spice latte" you'll get all kinds of recipes.

  7. Use less dishwasher detergent, liquid dish soap, laundry soap than recommended. Decrease it little by little until you get to the point where you're not happy with it and then take it back up a notch.

  8. You can freeze milk, cheese, and butter. Buy it when it's on sale. I buy the grated cheese when it's on sale and just throw it in the freezer. Same with butter. The gallon milk jugs will expand a bit but I've never had one pop open. You can open them before freezing and remove a bit so there's room for expansion.

  9. Use cloth napkins instead of paper. You can make your own out of old sheets etc. We use ours all day unless they're really messy.

  10. I turn off the oven about 10 min before the food is done. The trapped heat it still cooking the food and I'm using less electricity.

  11. Learn to maintain your things to make them last longer.

  12. Do not buy things for which you can't pay cash!

  13. It doesn't take money to have a lovely house. Cleaning your house, moving things around, using your creativity and decluttering go along way to making your home look great.

For more tips I'd like to recommend Brenda 's Recession Ponderings at . Just scroll down her sidebar on the right until you get to that topic heading.


Anonymous said...

Great post. So glad you are back in blogland....I missed you. Connie

Cyndi said...

Great tips Maneula, we can always use new ideas in this area.
I really like the one about setting aside leftovers before you eat your meal.
Thanks, Cyndi

Tracy said...

Wonderful post filled with good ideas, Manuela!

Thank you for visiting my blog a few days ago and leaving a comment. It's nice to "meet" you. :)

Salmagundi said...

I loved your idea of cost-cutting even if you don't need to so that you can help someone else in need. "Live simply, so that someone else can simply live!" Sally

Screaming Meme said...

I love #13! You are so right!!! Thank you so much for your sweet comment...It meant the world to me!!!!

Anonymous said...

Hi Manuela,
Thank you for sharing these tips.

Frugality due to necessity is how we live, although even if we were in a better position, I would always live frugally. I really think it's wrong not to when there are so many in need in this world.

Much of my frugal living comes down to many things we don't do (although there's a lot I do) - we don't vacation, we stay home instead of wasting precious gas. I try to stay out of stores and don't even go to thrift stores or garage sales. Spending to me is still spending and I'm always tempted, so I stay away. We focus on paying the bills and taking care of what we already have. There's really not much we need.

It's the lack of contentment that gets many into trouble. I'm not perfect but I really work on this and I'm able to be home full-time while living on a smaller income. I'm grateful for that.

Anonymous said...

I just thought of an idea and wonder if you could post on it in the future.

Your last line talks about how you can have a nice home and not spend money doing so.

I'm wondering if you could have a post or two about this subject, while sharing some good practicals? We really do not have a budget for decorating and so I feel inept when it comes to this topic. Thank you.

Kathleen Grace said...

Great ideas. They all sound like little things, but little things add up. Just like you can nickel and dime yourself into debt, you can nickel and dime yourself into better, frugal living:>)

GlorV1 said...

Those are all great ideas and I like them. I like to buy when on sale and freeze as well. Thank you for the hints. I like your blog.

Free Art Printables said...

Love the ideas! I am a huge Dave Ramsey fan and am all over paying cash for everything!!!! I think that is a huge thing! Great tips!

Simply Me Art said...

Mauela, Welcome Back! I just surfed into to your New Home! Couldn't Agree more with this post. We have cut back more than ever and really gone back to a way of life we had when we were first married many years ago. It is such a hard time and tough not to get down. Love all your suggestions and ideas. Ill be stopping in often. Stop over to my blog, Im having a GiveAway this week. Have a Wonderful week, Jamie

Anonymous said...

It is always good to get some new frugal ideas. Thanks. I use my dish washing water to water our bushes and the plants on the patio etc. This is the only watering they get. Or it is used like you do to flush a toilet. Also I save most of my dish rinsing water and use it again that day as part of my dish washing water., adding hot water. I think this water is ok to use this way. Does anyone know differently? Lyn, I understand the need for private blogs but I was disappointed yours was private after reading your good comments...:-) Oh, on the picture from this post..could you tell us the title of the top red book? I could not read the title. I am so glad you are back blogging. Thanks again you have been a real encouragement to our home.

Mimi Sue said...

Thanks for all the great tips. Since my husband is semi retired we are living on a lot less than when he was working full time. One thing we do is when we go out to dinner (which isn't very often) we usually split an entree and order another dinner salad or dessert. It's really plenty of food and we still feel like we've had a treat. Mimi

Anonymous said...

Wonderful tips Manuela! Thank you!! Happy Monday to you!


Deanna Rabe - Creekside Cottage Blog said...

Marvelous ideas for saving money!

If it is ok, I would like to post a link to this post.


Betty said...

Thanks for the tips Manuela! My hubby would rather eat our leftovers than the hospital cafeteria food so we save money there. I should start packing them before dinner like you said.

Anonymous said...

This is a great list of tips you have gathered. I am so glad you have shared all of your ideas with us. You are doing a fabulous job managing your household and I have gained so much insight from you!
Thank you for sharing!

Manuela@A Cultivated Nest said...

Anonymous - Since I have no way to contact you I hope you see this! The book on the top is Miserly Moms by Jonnie McCoy. She has a website and she used to have a yahoo group (not sure if it's still active).


Unknown said...

Great tips, Manuela! Thanks for sharing these. I don't know why I never thought of #4, but it will become a regular part of my repetoire now.

I see you have The Tightwad Gazette- isn't that a great book?

Anonymous said...

Thankyou for the book information...I should have realized that was the title.!..I have it and Jonnie's Miserly Meals too!! :-)I use plates on top of bowls in the refrigerator instead of plastic wrap in case that is a help for someone. And the hint others gave of using left over jars with lids too for leftovers. Some one on another blog had a quote from an old book that quoted an older woman that said they used the dried corn cobs cut up in the garden to hold water for the plants. You put sections of them in the soil around the roots and I take it the water collects in them to be used later by the plants. Like an old style of the newer water beats I take it. I will try it soon. Right now is corn on the cob season so a good time to save those cobs and use them there instead of just composting them! Another garden hint I have is this...I use the black soaker hoses in the garden. After a while some of the holes in them get clogged with our hard water. I go around off and on and watch how much water is coming out to individual plants. You will see one plant drooping. Look down and the hose is dry or much dryer than the hose around this one. If you take the hose and gently move it around pinching it it will open up those holes so the plant will get water again. If you hoses are very{years} old watch and do it very gently as it can split a very brittle hose...ask me how I found this out!! ;-) Jody

Paula said...

Dear Manuela,

Wonderful tips! Thank you for so much for compiling and sharing these good things to save money! You are very encouraging!