Learning how to be frugal to save money is labor intensive work, just like anything else we do that brings us great value or happiness in our lives, it requires a bit of elbow grease, patience, Google Chroming, and brainpower.
As I work on being more frugal, I converted my tiny sized kitchen or extra bathroom (which ever one is available first) into a science lab for mixing, experimenting, and testing for a few hours a day several times a week.
My sweet husband thinks I’m in over my head (or just plain crazy) some of the time as he usually finds me up to my arm pits in some kind of random hot mess frugal type work that involves mixing, stirring, grating, cutting, glue-gunning, heating, bottling, packing, cooling, cooking, baking, combining, fusing solids, dry powders or liquids together.
Rather than saying out loud, he thinks, I am crazy, or ask what I am doing, he remains patient with me, while walking in the other direction ignoring my temporary insanity!
Being a one income family has really motivated me to stop my wasteful non-frugal habits for good! As a stay at home mom, I am looking for as many frugal alternatives to save on food, make cleaning products, handcraft toddler clothing, decorative crafts and gifts!
I am making frugal habit changes through various learning mediums such as books, blogs, talking to friends and family and of course, adopting ideas from YouTube vlogs!
I made a list of things we don’t use / buy anymore along with our frugal alternatives, so Grab a cup of coffee, first, because it’s a long list!
Here we go:
|Things we don’t use/buy any more||Frugal alternatives|
|1.Paper towels (we still have the same ackage we purchased 8 months ago)||Kitchen cloth rags for all purpose cleaning|
|—–||Hand towels for hand washing and drying|
|—–||Cloth napkins for eating|
|2. Swiffer dry / wet pads||I use cotton 11×11 inch rags as replacements|
|3. Baby food||We make homemade baby food in our slow cooker using frozen or fresh fruits and vegetables|
|4. Store brand or brand name All purpose cleaner||Instead of throwing newly emptied dish liquid soap bottles with small amount of soap at the bottom, We add filtered water + one cup of vinegar to sanitize counter surfaces and mop floors|
|5. Disposable diapers||For our new baby, we will be using cloth diapers + diaper liners (for easier clean up)|
|6. Dry laundry soap||We make our homemade dry SUPER soapy detergent mixture at the beginning of the year to last for 12 months.|
|7. Liquid fabric softer||We use baking soda to make our clothes soft, which is added into the dry laundry soap mixture|
|8. Fabric dryer sheets||We skip this optional step in our laundry process, saves oodles of money for us! Plus, we prefer not to smell like a bouquet of flowers|
|9. Plastic baggies||We use glassware with lids, sturdy plastic tubs, or recycled glass jars|
|10. Plastic squeeze condiment bottles
|We reuse/repurpose maple syrup, liquid dish soap, ketchup, mustard, and siracha sauce, honey condiment squeeze /squirt bottles|
|11. Body wash||I make our homemade DIY liquified body wash using Dove white bar soap+ vegetable glycerin+ filtered water, this will last us for 12 months|
|12. Face cleaner / toner||Brown sugar + honey / witch hazel|
|13. Liquid drainer (for sinks only)||Baking soda and vinegar, and strong pipe cleaner for scrubbing|
|14. Dog food||I prepare and cook my dog’s food on a weekly basis, a random combination of chicken, beef + with 2 or 3 choices of vegetables, and rice|
|15. Store bought bakery goods||We buy baking ingredients in bulk only as they go on sale, and bake at home|
|16. Bed time diapers||We add a cloth diaper in our daughter’s regular disposable diaper to keep her dry at night|
|17. Carpet deodorizer||I make a dry powder mixture by combining baking soda + Purex Crystals into a re-purposed spice bottle|
|18. Coffee filters||We now use a paperless Pour over coffee dripper to make our coffee|
|I spritz alcohol on my windows and mirrors and wipe off with a microfiber rag|
|20. Carpet cleaner||Cheap hair shampoo|
|21. Tile grout cleaner||DIY laundry detergent + super baking soda + vinegar + tap water + scrubber|
|22. Liquid dish soap||Using different DIY dish soap recipes found online|
|23. Baby wipes||I make DIY baby wipes using paper towels, pure aloe vera, Witch Hazel Extract and Liquid castile Soap|
|24. washer and Dryer (we don’t use these appliances between the hours of 6am to 9pm, Monday to Sunday)||We wait to run these major appliances at night when have free electric usage!|
This is an extensive list for one post. My intent is to expand it in the next few months. Do you have things you don’t use or buy any more because you found a more frugal alternative? Let me know, I would love your feedback!