Guest post from Amy
My husband and I are saving money to buy a home, so we have been cutting back on our expenses. Right now, we are tackling our grocery budget and trying to make it smaller. Crystal has often mentioned a book called Miserly Moms.
I was curious to check it out, so I ordered a copy for $0.01. It’s been the best cent I’ve spent in years.
I have been implementing two of the book’s principles so far:
1. Make things from scratch.
2. Don’t waste food.
After reading those chapters, I realized we throw away food all the time! My two young children often only eat half of their meals. We save the food in the refrigerator for “later”, but later never comes. So we end up throwing it away. This book suggests that we re-purpose that food for later use by freezing it.
We also buy unnecessary items in order to “make things from scratch”. I make things from scratch all the time, but I buy convenient foods to make those things. We love smoothies and I’ve been buying frozen fruit to make them. As I show in the following example, I could buy in season fruit at a cheaper price and cut it up myself, then freeze it for later.
Based off of these two principles, I would like to share my recent savings.
Make things from scratch:
I love buying organic whenever possible. My warehouse club is currently carrying delicious, sweet organic strawberries at 2lbs for $4.99. Let’s just round it out and say it costs $2.50 a pound. When I buy frozen organic strawberries for smoothies, I spend $4.65 for a pound!
Buying it fresh (and in this case in bulk), and spending 5-10 minutes washing and cutting it myself gives me a savings of $2.15. Imagine the savings if you don’t buy organic!
Don’t waste food:
My children ate strawberries for a snack, and didn’t completely eat any one. So I took those half-eaten strawberries and quickly chopped them up and added them to my frozen strawberries bag. That adds up to a lot of strawberries that would have normally been thrown away!
My daughter always takes the crust off of her toast, and instead of throwing it away as normal, I’ve been putting them in a freezer bag to make bread crumbs, French toast, or for use in casseroles for the future. You would not believe how many bread crumbs I save in only a few days!
Through this book I’ve realized that there is more we can do to save money and stretch our dollars. I hope these principles will be helpful to someone as it was to me.
Amy is a stay-at-home, part-time working mom of two adorable and precocious preschoolers. She loves saving money, gardening, and reading good books.