Our family spent most of the month of April with only one vehicle.
That may not seem like such a big deal except we live about 30 miles from everywhere. And the bus for preschool does not come out to get the kids from the woods.
I was forced to rely on my neighbors (also known as Mom and Dad) to help me get the kiddos to preschool and to shuttle me around for errands. I offered to pay for gas numerous times, but only once did they take me up on it. (They’re awesome that way!).
Fortunately, I had amassed a decent stockpile and didn’t need to do much shopping. Because I didn’t want to put too much of a burden on their time and gas budgets, I had to get creative when it came to getting errands done.
I realized that there is so much I could do online without ever even leaving the house:
Online banking and bill pay. I set most of my bills to auto-pay from my rewards credit card and have been happy with the results. I use online banking to pay off that credit card bill in full each month. It’s so easy and I save time and money on postage.
Shopping online. You can buy just about anything you could possibly need online from groceries to household goods. So many places offer free shipping and coupon codes (especially when you shop through Ebates), that it is actually cheaper for me to shop online than it is for me to go to town and buy the same thing in a store.
Entertainment. There are so many ways to be entertained when you have an internet connection: movies, TV shows, games, and my personal favorite, free online books. I never once felt like I was missing out on anything because I couldn’t go to town.
When you can’t go to town, you start to get creative and make do with what you have around the house. Sure, there are always things we’d like to have, but when you think about what you really need, you realize you can survive.
My experience of living with one vehicle helped me to realize just how easy it is to avoid trips to town. And avoiding trips to town is the BEST way to save money on gas!