Living A Frugal Life http://www.livingafrugallife.com A Frugal Life is a Rich Life Wed, 21 Jan 2015 23:13:16 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.0.1 Get over $1200 in Craft and DIY eBooks, Courses and More for $34.95!!!! http://www.livingafrugallife.com/get-1200-craft-diy-ebooks-courses-34-98/ http://www.livingafrugallife.com/get-1200-craft-diy-ebooks-courses-34-98/#respond Wed, 21 Jan 2015 18:54:00 +0000 http://www.livingafrugallife.com/?p=29273   There aren’t enough hours in the day, right? With work, helping the kids with their homework, preparing meals, cleaning up after everyone and putting yet another load of laundry on, there’s very little time for sleep – let alone DIY and crafting!  While I am SUPER busy with so many things I have found […]

Get over $1200 in Craft and DIY eBooks, Courses and More for $34.95!!!! is a post from Living A Frugal Life

]]>

 

There aren’t enough hours in the day, right? With work, helping the kids with their homework, preparing meals, cleaning up after everyone and putting yet another load of laundry on, there’s very little time for sleep – let alone DIY and crafting!  While I am SUPER busy with so many things I have found that when I am creative or give myself an outlet, life is much easier to deal with and to remain sane!  Like I said on my facebook page last week, you have to work some sanity money into the budget.  This is a great way to get the most out of that sanity money!

Do you look at that bare wall in the den and that tatty tablecloth on the kitchen table, and just wish you had a few hours to do something about them? Or do you browse through those wonderful crafting successes on Pinterest and think to yourself that “one day” you’ll have a few more minutes to yourself so that you too can create something incredible?

You’re not alone – there’s a huge community of people out there who are feeling just as frustrated as you are! They are not all millionaires or made of money either.  Just people that want to have pride in their creations.

Thankfully though, there’s an exciting new product to help you quickly and easily get into (or back into) the creative projects you’ve been desperate to start. It’s called The Ultimate DIY Bundle, and it’s a collection of carefully curated DIY and crafting eBooks and eCourses from the world’s leading authors and bloggers in the industry.

For the crazy low price of just $34.95, you get access to a carefully curated library of over 76 eBooks and eCourses. And let me reassure you that this really is great value: the Ultimate Bundles team (who produced the resource) has spent MONTHS seeking out the most respected experts in the industry and asking them to contribute their premium-quality eBooks and eCourses. These really are the best of the best when it comes to DIY and crafting advice and information.

Topics in the bundle include:

  • Home decor
  • Furniture painting
  • Photography
  • Chalk pastels
  • Handmade gifts
  • Homemade skincare products
  • Cake decorating
  • Photography and photo-editing
  • Paint colors and interior design
  • …and a whole lot more (76 eBooks and eCourses in total) – to help you be inspired or get started with your next DIY or crafting project!

There’s no need to worry about information overload though: The Ultimate DIY Bundle comes with a complete guide to getting started, so that you can know exactly which resource to use for your specific crafting or DIY project and jump straight into it with confidence!

 

 

Hurry though! The Ultimate DIY Bundle will only be on sale for 6 days – from 8am EST on Wednesday, January 21 until 11.59pm EST on Monday, January 26.

You can buy with complete confidence because you’re covered by the Ultimate Bundles 30-day money-back guarantee. That means you have a full 30 days to enjoy all the eBooks and eCourses in the bundle, and if you don’t think they provided enough value, you’ll get a full refund.

Not only that, but The Ultimate DIY Bundle comes with 4 awesome bonuses, worth over $118. That’s 3x the price of the bundle alone! These include…

A free $15 Store Credit PLUS 8×10 Art Print from Hope Ink ($43 Value), a free online class from Craftsy (up to $60 Value), free $15 store credit to Fawnsberg.com, a free sewing pattern PLUS a Premium Video Class from UpCraft Club ($19.99 Value), and free, full digital copies of Where Women Create Magazine and Greencraft Magazine ($20 value) from Stampington and Co.

So, don’t miss your chance to grab The Ultimate DIY Bundle, and get 76 incredible eBooks and eCourses for just $34.95. All you need to do is take action by midnight on Monday, January 26!

This amazing deal ends in just…

motionmailapp.com
Pick up your copy right now, before it’s too late. Or, learn more here.

 

 

Disclosure: I have included affiliate links in this post. Read the fine print about this bundle and read the answers to frequently asked questions about the bundle.

 

Get over $1200 in Craft and DIY eBooks, Courses and More for $34.95!!!! is a post from Living A Frugal Life

]]>
http://www.livingafrugallife.com/get-1200-craft-diy-ebooks-courses-34-98/feed/ 0
How to Manage Accounts and Organize Your Money + Free Printable http://www.livingafrugallife.com/how-to-manage-accounts-free-printable/ http://www.livingafrugallife.com/how-to-manage-accounts-free-printable/#respond Mon, 19 Jan 2015 16:10:54 +0000 http://www.livingafrugallife.com/?p=29171   Managing accounts is the first step to getting your finances in order.  I know accounts are really sacred in families, but you have to keep track of this information somewhere. I know that when we started keeping better track of our money, we wanted to make sure both of us had access to all […]

How to Manage Accounts and Organize Your Money + Free Printable is a post from Living A Frugal Life

]]>
how to manage accounts

 

Managing accounts is the first step to getting your finances in order.  I know accounts are really sacred in families, but you have to keep track of this information somewhere. I know that when we started keeping better track of our money, we wanted to make sure both of us had access to all accounts. A spouse can’t help feel in control of the money if they do not have access to accounts. We tried a few different options to manage accounts and get passwords back and forth.  none of them worked really well for us and we would always forget to add things to it.

The First Step to Manage Accounts and Track Your Money

Since everything is “online” nowadays, we often forget to write things down that will help us remember what our account log in and passwords are. That’s why I wanted to create a printable that would help you be able to track every account you own, where it’s located, and of course the username and password.

Be sure you keep this page to manage accounts in a safe place where others wont easily find it.  I would recommend putting it into a safe or other locked filing cabinet.  This will keep it only in the hands of the right people.

#5

 

I hope you find this free printable useful. I know we’ve used it in my family several times and I always recommend it to friends and family who are trying to keep better track of their finances. Download the free Account Information Worksheet right here…._Account_Information_Worksheet.

Be sure to check out the other family budget printables!

You can also get more tips on a perfect family budget here!

How to Manage Accounts and Organize Your Money + Free Printable is a post from Living A Frugal Life

]]>
http://www.livingafrugallife.com/how-to-manage-accounts-free-printable/feed/ 0
The Debt Hole We Dug and How We Are Digging Out Using a Budget http://www.livingafrugallife.com/debt-hole-dug-digging-using-budget/ http://www.livingafrugallife.com/debt-hole-dug-digging-using-budget/#comments Tue, 13 Jan 2015 16:02:47 +0000 http://www.livingafrugallife.com/?p=29249 I will get into the whole story of why we made the choice to go into debt later.  For now, I am going to just share with you some real numbers and the depth of what we dug.  I knew it was coming when we made our choice but to look at the number we […]

The Debt Hole We Dug and How We Are Digging Out Using a Budget is a post from Living A Frugal Life

]]>
Family Budget report

I will get into the whole story of why we made the choice to go into debt later.  For now, I am going to just share with you some real numbers and the depth of what we dug.  I knew it was coming when we made our choice but to look at the number we have now to pay off it seems crazy!

Honestly sometimes I wonder what the heck we were thinking.  I can’t say we would do it the same way if we went back, but there are 2 things we feel it is OK to have debt for.  One is a house and the other is an education.  Now, knowing that, that doesn’t mean it was easy for me.  I don’t care what the reason is for getting debt.  It weighs me down big time.  So we are on a path to pay this off as fast as possible so we can enjoy the money my husband is making and have a real life with a house and vacations and fun that we have dreamed of our whole life.

A lot of people think it is impossible to pay off your debt quickly when you have as much as we do.  But we are doing it!  Before I get into how we are paying this off, here is the numbers of what we owe.

All of our debt is student loan debt.  Which is all managed by the government now.  We have 3 years of 2 semesters each where we took out these loans.  We were able to get a couple scholarships during those 3 years which helped a small amount to lessen the debt we took out, but we took out money every year we were there.  So as of Jan. 10, 2015, we have $194,633.80 in loans to pay off.

Yes that number is a house.  We “bought a house” when we decided to go to school, but we have no house to show for it.  We have a degree that has helped him get a job.  While I think the amount it cost us to go to school is crazy, we decided to do it and we now have to be accountable to pay it off.

So we sat down after my husband got his job and we started looking at how we would budget this new amount of money we receive each month.  The first decision we made early on in our decision to go to law school was that when we were done we would not change our standard of living until we were done paying off our loans.  We are luck to live in a great place where the rent is rather low for the area we live.  We live in a 1200 sq feet, 3 bedroom apt.  We are a little cramped in here but after living in a 950 sq ft 2 bedroom place, this one feels HUGE!  We plan to stay in this place until we pay off our debt.

Ok, so now you know the HUGE amount of debt we have here is our plan to get it paid off by the end of 2019 (hopefully sooner).  Yes I said in 4 years.  We will be paying off our entire debt in 4 years!!!!!  If we do some side jobs or sell some items in our house (which we will) it will be sooner, but the longest we will take is 4 years!

To help us to do that, we are going to be posting our budget and our end of the month report on what extras we were able to do to pay things off faster.  We are going to be VERY open with everything so you can see what we do and how you can also make needed changed to live a better life.

January is the first month we have been able to make a budget like this so you will see little changes over the next couple months as we iron out how much we need in different categories. Due to my husband having a bi weekly paycheck, we are having to use a different budget then we have ever made.  It makes me a bit nervous because it is so new tome.  I am not sure I am doing this right because he will get checks 2-3 times a month, so each month will be a little different.  So I may switch us to a strictly every 2 week schedule if I can’t work it out to be a monthly one.  So Here is our budget for the month.

Real family budget

 

As you can see we are having to scatter some of our bills between the 2 checks and other things we are splitting between each check.  We are doing this because some of these are monthly bills due at certain times and the others are yearly or every 6 month bills we are saving for.

I am hoping we will be able to get some more income from selling unneeded items and by earning more on the blog.  If Ww do earn a little more, we will be able to put $3,000 on our loans and be 1/2 way done with 1 of our loans!!!!!  so excited for that!  Can’t wait to check it off our list!

Now to press forward and make more huge dents in our debt so we can be financially free again!

How is your budget this month?  What suggestions do you have for us???

Be sure to check out how to budget if you are new at it!

The Debt Hole We Dug and How We Are Digging Out Using a Budget is a post from Living A Frugal Life

]]>
http://www.livingafrugallife.com/debt-hole-dug-digging-using-budget/feed/ 4
After Many Months of Trials http://www.livingafrugallife.com/many-months-trials/ http://www.livingafrugallife.com/many-months-trials/#comments Mon, 05 Jan 2015 15:15:35 +0000 http://www.livingafrugallife.com/?p=29230   I can’t say the last couple years have been easy for me. In fact I have seen myself going from loving my family and being debt free and care free to becoming someone that is not the real me, probably pretty depressed and becoming crazy about the money.  It is hard for me to […]

After Many Months of Trials is a post from Living A Frugal Life

]]>
paying off debt

 

I can’t say the last couple years have been easy for me. In fact I have seen myself going from loving my family and being debt free and care free to becoming someone that is not the real me, probably pretty depressed and becoming crazy about the money.  It is hard for me to put into words what has happened these last few years, but I have not been in a great place.  I have never admitted to anyone the toll this took on my emotions and I have never talked about it very openly at all.

I stopped blogging back in July because my husband was studying for the bar, we had lots of debt and no savings to live off of.  We had to make a change and I had to make more money.  So I started to focus on the thing that I could use to bring us in enough money to live until he got done with his test.  I had started to sell Lularoe is June and I was doing a lot of boutiques and was making just enough to get us by.  I just couldn’t keep up with everything and all the pressure.  So I let go of the blog for a bit to help my family get through all this.

My husband took the bar in July and we started the long and painful wait for his results.  In CA you take the test in July but you don’t get any results back until the week of Thanksgiving.  These months were not pretty for us.  I was dealing with a fried husband who had sent the last 3 years studying and testing with the hope that we will make it to the next step, then studying day and night for this test in the hopes that he will make it past and be able to get some income.  I was dealing with the pressure of making enough money to make ends meet and to manage the money.  But the biggest thing I felt was the pressure to balance everything and keep my family taken care of at the same time of doing everything else.

My kids were in a new house, new schools, new life, new everything.  As there mom, I felt it was my responsibility to be sure they got everything the needed emotionally so they could adjust well.  My husband was in burn out mode.  He sat around a lot the first week or so after he finished his test, just vegging.  I didn’t mind at first but after a while I got really tired of seeing him there.  I would voice my frustrations and he would begin to move and help and would do good for a couple days then be fried again.  It took ever ounce of patience I had to not get really angry with him and lash out.  I knew he had felt a lot over these last years but I also knew I had felt a lot too.

I just kept going through the motions and tried to keep my brain from being a ball of mush.  It was a loosing battle for the most part.  I took it a day at a time and learned again to rely on the Lord to make it through.  I didn’t know how it happened, but the day finally came for him to get his bar results.  He had told me a couple days before that he wanted to look at them by himself.  He was really nervous to look so it took some time for him to get in the room and look.  I on the other hand just wanted to get this over with and wanted to know if we were going to continue this crazy cycle or move on to the next piece of our life.  But again I tried to be fair and wait for him to find out before I did…. I felt a little annoyed by that I am not going to lie.  I had gone through every step of this just like he did.  I made sure the house was functioning each day and made sure the kids didn’t kill each other.  I was working to bring in money when he couldn’t do it.  I had worked just as hard as him through all of this.  But I had to put those feelings aside and let him look.

About a minute after he went into our room he came out screaming that he passed running into the front room.  I couldn’t help but sit and cry.  I felt so much relief knowing that that horrible dark time in our life was past and that we could finally move on and begin to dig out.  That limbo phase was horrible and even though he didn’t have a job, the pressure and the fear of what would happen if he didn’t pass was gone.  Just. Like. That.  I began to search facebook and text friends to see if they were also hearing good news.  Then the joy and the fun came to a stand still for a second.  A good friend of mine whose husband had taken the test 5 times got news that he didn’t pass.

At that point I realized that we were being hugely blessed.  This sweet family had been living in So Cal year after year hearing bad news each time he took the test.  They have shown so much faith and so much strength during all this.  You never knew what a hard time she was having and you never knew the feelings of fear and struggle they were having.  They were always so positive and loving and giving.  They still had more to endure.

I began to wonder why we were blessed and not them.  They deserved it so much more then we did.  They had had their trials and endured them well and remained faithful.  Why did they not get blessed and we did?  I didn’t have an answer.  I would have given that moment of joy to her in a second.  Just so she could feel that relief she has hoped for for these many years.  I wished more then anything at that moment that I could have given her husband a pass and we taken the second time testing but there was nothing I could do to help her.  I knew that she was struggling with the same feelings I had had these last few months.  If only I could take them away.

Over the next 3 weeks we did the needed things for Matthew to get a job.  He was sworn in, he got his bar number and he began looking for a job in the new options he had since he passed.  He had his first interview and had one other scheduled.  Before he could get to the second interview he got a call from the firm who interviewed him first.  They offered him a job.  I was so happy, but scared s this ment we had to face reality and the hole we dug these last 3 years.

As I begin to reflect on our last 3 years, I can’t tell you how real the fear is and the struggle.  I hope that through my story you can feel those feelings and understand how to better cope with these times then I did.  It wasn’t pretty.  But I had gotten through it and so can each one of you.  There are lessons I have had to learn and am still learning each day.  I ran from the feelings rather then letting myself be real and feel them.  And even though I wasn’t the best servant of the Lord, he still saw us fit to be blessed.  I think at times he probably knew I couldn’t take much more, but whatever His reason was, I am grateful for the blessing and hope we can bless others with our story and be better servants in the future.

After Many Months of Trials is a post from Living A Frugal Life

]]>
http://www.livingafrugallife.com/many-months-trials/feed/ 5
Edible Thanksgiving Kids Craft: Teepees http://www.livingafrugallife.com/edible-thanksgiving-kids-craft-teepees/ http://www.livingafrugallife.com/edible-thanksgiving-kids-craft-teepees/#respond Wed, 26 Nov 2014 22:42:28 +0000 http://www.livingafrugallife.com/?p=29201 Thanksgiving morning can be crazy and there is always lots of things happening. This thanksgiving kids craft is a great way to keep kids occupied and give them a little snack to keep their fingers out of the dinner foods! These adorable ice cream cone teepees are great for using as representation of the indians […]

Edible Thanksgiving Kids Craft: Teepees is a post from Living A Frugal Life

]]>
Thanksgiving Kids Craft

Thanksgiving morning can be crazy and there is always lots of things happening. This thanksgiving kids craft is a great way to keep kids occupied and give them a little snack to keep their fingers out of the dinner foods!

These adorable ice cream cone teepees are great for using as representation of the indians and also a tasty treat for dessert! You can use these as just simply decoration or you can actually use them to eat out of! They are super easy to make and they look adorable and awesome! I hope you enjoy, let’s get started on how to make them!

Supplies:
-Sugar cones or Waffle cones
-Chocolate
-Sprinkles
-Straws, pretzel sticks, OR carrot sticks

Procedure:
-First you need to cut off the tip of the ice cream cone using a knife
-Next, melt your chocolate. I used semi/sweet chocolate chips and the bag tells you how to simply melt your chips into a great consistency for this project!
-Now, taking your cones take the open side and dip it in your melted chocolate, immediately put the sprinkles on as your chocolate might dry too fast if you don’t!
-If you have pretzel sticks or carrot sticks you can use them as the tops of the teepees as this make the whole thing edible, if not you can use something simple like straws, this is what i did and they still look adorable!

-ENJOY!

What is your favorite thanksgiving kids craft you have done with your kids?

*You can use these as ice cream cones still, throw it a little chocolate over the hole you cut in the tip and allow it to harden!

Edible Thanksgiving Kids Craft: Teepees is a post from Living A Frugal Life

]]>
http://www.livingafrugallife.com/edible-thanksgiving-kids-craft-teepees/feed/ 0
5 Tips for Raising Smart Money Kids http://www.livingafrugallife.com/5-tips-for-raising-smart-money-kids/ http://www.livingafrugallife.com/5-tips-for-raising-smart-money-kids/#respond Wed, 03 Sep 2014 13:05:48 +0000 http://www.livingafrugallife.com/?p=29051   Raising kids is a tough job, but someone’s got to do it. Raising smart money kids is an even tougher job. Are you up for the challenge? When kids are raised as smart money kids they become smart money adults that will be good managers of money.  This should always be our goal as parents […]

5 Tips for Raising Smart Money Kids is a post from Living A Frugal Life

]]>
raising smart money kids

 

Raising kids is a tough job, but someone’s got to do it. Raising smart money kids is an even tougher job. Are you up for the challenge? When kids are raised as smart money kids they become smart money adults that will be good managers of money.  This should always be our goal as parents to raise good managers of life.

These five tips on raising smart money kids will help you focus on raising kids who are smart about their money.

Tips for Raising Smart Money Kids

#1. Talk About Money

Don’t spend their whole child hood not talking about money. Kids need to hear their parents talking about money and solving their money problems. It’s important that your kids don’t grow up thinking you’re perfect with your cash because you’re not. Do not be afraid to talk about money in every light possible.

#2. How to Spend Money

Some parents don’t teach their kids how to spend money. When your child reaches adulthood and are faced with all of this “pressure” on how to spend their money, they may not spend it right. That’s why it’s important to talk to your kids about spending money. Let them spend their own money and make mistakes. It’s okay if you’re there to guide them, but let them make the majority of their decisions. Isn’t it better if the learn about money mistakes as a child (where it’s harmless), then as an adult? Adults have larger repercussions then children when it comes to spending money the right way.

#3. Balancing an Account

Spending money and not balancing an account is how the majority of Americans spend their cash. However, balancing an account is one of the best ways you can raise kids who are smart about their money. You can teach this lesson when children are little by having them write down everything they buy. You help them subtract it form the overall balance they had before they started spending. When it comes to money lessons and children, this should be on the top of the lesson list.

#4. Handling Money

Kids should know that not all money comes in the form of credit or debit. Your children should be able to touch and feel the cash they are about to spend. Most money experts would agree that cash hurts when you spend it, using a card doesn’t. Allow your kids the chance to handle the money they own. Also, let them pay with cash when they do make a purchase. This is something they really need to experience to understand.

#5. Money isn’t Free

A lot of children grow up with a sense of entitlement about money and “things.” From an early age, all children should understand that money doesn’t come free. There’s always a price to be paid. Whenever you spend $50 on a meal eating out, that is a couple of hour’s worth of work. You should teach them that time is money and it’s important to be wise about where it’s spent.  Talk to them as you spend your money telling them the price that was paid to earn that money.

Try these tips for raising smart money kids this year with your child.  They work with any age and always be open with your kids about your money.  Your kids will see your example and you will be able to help them get a good grasp on how to be good stewards of their money.

Check out more ways to teach your kids to save money!

5 Tips for Raising Smart Money Kids is a post from Living A Frugal Life

]]>
http://www.livingafrugallife.com/5-tips-for-raising-smart-money-kids/feed/ 0
How to Keep Track of Individual Bills + Free Printable http://www.livingafrugallife.com/how-to-keep-track-of-individual-bills-free-printable/ http://www.livingafrugallife.com/how-to-keep-track-of-individual-bills-free-printable/#respond Tue, 19 Aug 2014 13:07:03 +0000 http://www.livingafrugallife.com/?p=29111 Wouldn’t it be nice to have a place to keep track of each individual bill you own? This Individual Bill Worksheet is perfect for this. It allows you to see when the you paid the bill, the amount you paid, and what your balance is. This is great for keeping track of your bills without […]

How to Keep Track of Individual Bills + Free Printable is a post from Living A Frugal Life

]]>
How to Track Individual Bills

Wouldn’t it be nice to have a place to keep track of each individual bill you own? This Individual Bill Worksheet is perfect for this. It allows you to see when the you paid the bill, the amount you paid, and what your balance is. This is great for keeping track of your bills without having to keep track of each actual bill in your home.

Individual Bill

Since we went from not having many bills to have a TON of bills, I was looking for a way to simplify things. We are currently using these bill worksheets as a way to make sure our bills are getting paid and as a way to keep track of things. Paying down debt is not easy at all. However, I’d like to make it easy because no one has time for nonsense.

I’d like to share this printable with you. You can actually download it by following this link… Individual_Bill_Worksheet.

Be sure to check out the other family budget printables!

You can also get more tips on a perfect family budget here!

How to Keep Track of Individual Bills + Free Printable is a post from Living A Frugal Life

]]>
http://www.livingafrugallife.com/how-to-keep-track-of-individual-bills-free-printable/feed/ 0
Saving Grocery Money By Cooking From Scratch http://www.livingafrugallife.com/saving-money-without-coupons-cooking-from-scratch/ http://www.livingafrugallife.com/saving-money-without-coupons-cooking-from-scratch/#respond Fri, 08 Aug 2014 13:07:01 +0000 http://www.thesassysaver.net/saving-money-without-coupons-cooking-from-scratch/ If you are new to this series you may want to start at the beginning HERE.   Saving grocery money can be tough.  People like certain tastes and sometimes those tastes cost money.  One simple change you can make to save some money is by cooking from scratch.  This has always been something I have loved to […]

Saving Grocery Money By Cooking From Scratch is a post from Living A Frugal Life

]]>
Saving Grocery Money

If you are new to this series you may want to start at the beginning HERE 

Saving grocery money can be tough.  People like certain tastes and sometimes those tastes cost money.  One simple change you can make to save some money is by cooking from scratch.  This has always been something I have loved to do. I never realized the benefits it has to my family or to my pocketbook until I was married for a few years.

I was saving grocery money each time I turned on the stove and started tossing whatever was on my shelf into the pot.  This was something that was very therapeutic for me.  When I began calculating the savings, I was even more excited!

We spent way too much money on processed stuff that was doing nothing for us.  When I decided to start cooking regularly, I was able to dramatically shrink our bill.

It is strange because I think one of the most common misconceptions is that cooking from scratch costs a lot of money.  For most people the opposite happens.  When they begin to cook from scratch you actually spend less.

How Cooking From Scratch Is Saving Grocery Money

One of the biggest ways you are saving grocery money is because cooking from scratch keeps your pantry simple. – When you cook from scratch you tend to use the same basic ingredients. This means you buy less items to stockpile in your pantry.

  1. You use the same recipes often but do variations of them – I find when I cook from scratch I have base recipes of things that I then can add things to. When we make muffins we have a few items that make the base muffin mix and add the fruits or other items to make them different.
  2. The basic items cost less – Buying base items in bulk cost less then being food pre-prepared, so it saves you money.

There are many other benefits to your family as well.  Cooking this way has less additives and preservatives.  This means your family is getting more of the bulk and goodness of the vegetables and fruits.  It helps your family to maintain a healthy weight and to have a healthy lifestyle for life.

Saving grocery money can be hard.  But making a simple change to cooking from scratch even a couple days a week can make a huge difference in your pocket book and you will start to see big ways you are saving grocery money to be used in other parts of your budget!

If you are looking for some great recipes to help you start to cook from scratch for your family, check out my Frugal Recipes!

Saving Grocery Money By Cooking From Scratch is a post from Living A Frugal Life

]]>
http://www.livingafrugallife.com/saving-money-without-coupons-cooking-from-scratch/feed/ 0
How to Track Monthly Bills+Free Printable http://www.livingafrugallife.com/how-to-track-monthly-billsfree-printable/ http://www.livingafrugallife.com/how-to-track-monthly-billsfree-printable/#respond Tue, 05 Aug 2014 14:00:30 +0000 http://www.livingafrugallife.com/?p=29053   My husband and I are not new to having to pay bills, especially since he’s been through law school and now we’re living with debt. Since he’s done with law school, it’s important we take the time to know what bills are due and when. Paying a bill late is not an option, so […]

How to Track Monthly Bills+Free Printable is a post from Living A Frugal Life

]]>
Revised

 

My husband and I are not new to having to pay bills, especially since he’s been through law school and now we’re living with debt. Since he’s done with law school, it’s important we take the time to know what bills are due and when. Paying a bill late is not an option, so that’s one reason I created this bills worksheet! Here’s a little more on this worksheet and how it can help your budget.

Bills are probably one of the most stressful parts of living the adult life. It’s hard because you need to make sure you have enough money every month to meet the demands of having bills. It’s best if you can sit down and write down what each bill is, amount owed, when it’s due, and so on. Having all of this information in one place is ideal because then you can make sure every bill is delivered on time.

What if you have a large bill you’re paying on? Well, unless you’re relying on the company to send you a bill every month, you might forget exactly what you paid. Putting this information all down in one spot is one way you can reach financial freedom.

monthly bill tracker photo

I’ve created this monthly bill tracker to hopefully make your bill paying life a little easier. With life and kids in the picture, it can be hard to remember to pay something like a bill. With this monthly bill tracker, you’ll be good to go in the bill department. It includes

  • Bill
  • Amount Owed
  • Date Paid
  • Actual Amount Paid
  • Balance

I’d suggest putting this in a binder to start with. Put it in a place you can go back to every month to check. And don’t forget that one of the main parts of this whole “bill” paying this is to remain consistent.

You can actually view the printable and download it  with this link. Monthly_Bill_Tracker.

Please let me know what you think and if you used this printable (and if it helped you)!

How to Track Monthly Bills+Free Printable is a post from Living A Frugal Life

]]>
http://www.livingafrugallife.com/how-to-track-monthly-billsfree-printable/feed/ 0
Using Local Markets To Save Money On Grocery Shopping http://www.livingafrugallife.com/saving-money-on-groceries-without-coupons-shopping-at-local-markets/ http://www.livingafrugallife.com/saving-money-on-groceries-without-coupons-shopping-at-local-markets/#respond Tue, 29 Jul 2014 13:09:55 +0000 http://www.livingafrugallife.com/saving-money-on-groceries-without-coupons-shopping-at-local-markets/   If you are new to this series you may want to start at the beginning HERE. When we were first married I was a one store shopper.  This isn’t very good when you are trying to save money on grocery shopping.  But, like most people in the US we went to the closest place to […]

Using Local Markets To Save Money On Grocery Shopping is a post from Living A Frugal Life

]]>
 Save Money On Grocery

If you are new to this series you may want to start at the beginning HERE.

When we were first married I was a one store shopper.  This isn’t very good when you are trying to save money on grocery shopping.  But, like most people in the US we went to the closest place to our house and never cared to research prices or other stores that may save us money.  We had a Save Mart close to us and we went and shopped there religiously.

That all changed when I started to be aware of money and where it was going.  We were spending over $600 a month on our family of 4.  We knew we had a problem and we needed to save money on grocery shopping.  So I began to branch out when I started couponing.  I started to go to other stores and found some great deals and much better quality of produce and meats at lower prices.

Then one day a friend of mine rocked my world.  She told me about a market in down town Fresno that was open year round and sold fresh produce for mostly $.50 a pound!  I  was shocked! I had no idea this place existed. Heck, I didn’t even know they could sell produce for that cheap and make money!

I headed down town and was overwhelmed with the choices.  It took me about 30 minutes just to decide what to get.  I was so excited I came home and called everyone I know. I told them that they had to go check this out.  It was amazing to go and leave with a weeks worth of produce for about $10!!!

The produce was great!  It was a market run by local members of the community, they took cash only and were very helpful.  The fact that the market was year round was a HUGE plus because I was able to get the in season items.  During the winter I honestly had no idea what to do with 1/2 the things, but I was able to consistently get all the produce we needed for about $10 a week!!!

Using Local Markets To Save Money On Grocery Shopping

To find the market that will save you the most money takes some trial and error, so don’t be afraid to not love the first place you go.  Here are a couple tips so you can help you to find the market that works the best for you.

Not all farmers markets are the same

Not all markets are the same however.  We went to the weekly farmers market that is close to our home and the prices were higher then the sale prices at the stores.  This market is more about the feel of the market rather then the produce itself.  These types of markets aren’t helpful when your trying to save money on grocery shopping.

We have another one in the area that has prices similar to the store but it only runs a few months out of the year.  It is important to know how your farmers market runs when you are planning on using it regularly.

It is also important to know other things as when like your price points.  This can determine if a market is worth your time and your money to go to.  Be sure you also know if you want organic or non-organic produce as the markets will vary on that as well.

Finding a local farmers market

So how do you find your local market?  First off you want to search the internet.  This is a great way to find the high traffic places and to get your feet wet with local markets.

The second thing you want to do is ask everyone you know if they know of a market.  That market I talked about is not advertised anywhere, so if my friend hadn’t told me I would have never known.

Lastly, you need to be prepared.  Take only the cash you want to spend, have your own bags, and if the price isn’t right be prepared to walk away with nothing.

Finding a market you like is a learning process, sometimes you have to go through 3-4 to get the one you want and need, so don’t be afraid to try out different options the next option might be the one that will save money on grocery shopping!

Do you have any tips for finding or shopping at a local market?

Using Local Markets To Save Money On Grocery Shopping is a post from Living A Frugal Life

]]>
http://www.livingafrugallife.com/saving-money-on-groceries-without-coupons-shopping-at-local-markets/feed/ 0