So this week, I’m working on the concept of less. It’s all part of my “Less is More” mantra for the new year.
It started, rather unexpectedly, with less TV. A power outage caused our beloved DVR to bite the dust, so we were without the ability to record our favorite shows for a few days. We got a refurbished replacement for $21, and while I’m happy it’s back, the brief time without it makes me think more about how much TV we watch and what we could be doing instead. Next week is Screen-Free Week. I know that for school and work reasons, we could not go entirely screen-free, but we could certainly stand a little less time in front of the TV/computer/iPad/videogames.
My husband and I pulled all of our clothes out of our closet and dressers and went through them, choosing to only keep what we truly love. That means we were able to take 3 garbage bags of gently used clothing that no longer fit us or that we never wore to Goodwill. I still have to deal with the upper shelf of the master bedroom closet, but I am pleased with the major progress on getting rid of excess stuff.
Speaking of spring cleaning, I’ve been thoroughly enjoying The Big Spring Clean series over at Counting Willows. Michelle (who writes for us here at Northern Cheapskate) has a true gift for making the most mundane household tasks interesting and more importantly, inspires me to tackle them in my own home.
Several products I’ve used this week had coupons inside the packaging, which always makes me happy, because who doesn’t like to pay less for the stuff you use? I was also thrilled to get another $10 off a $10 purchase coupon for JCPenney. My local JCPenney has some fabulous sales, and I’m hopeful I’ll be able to use the coupon to get a needed item for someone in our family. (A few weeks ago, I was able to get a shirt for myself and a much-needed pair of dress pants for my son with only $1 out of pocket).
We’ve had a week of rain, which is fabulous, because that means less SNOW! It’s been a long winter here in northern Minnesota, and it has been wonderful to spend less time indoors and more time outdoors.
We lost two trees in the yard during some high winds this week. While it means less shade in the summer, it means more natural light in the winter, which I think means more to me than shade given how long our winters are!
My son won a $25 gift certificate to a local greenhouse in a raffle, and he was sweet to give it to me! I’m already thinking about how best to use it so that I get the most plants for the money. I’m hoping that once my garden is growing, I’ll be spending less on the grocery bill.
I stumbled across this awesome “Buyerarchy of Needs” on the interwebs this week. I think it sums up a smart, frugal approach to life. Don’t you agree?
Anyway, I’m a work in progress (as we all are), so I’ll be sharing more updates soon.
Until then, what things are you doing to spend less and live more?