February 18, 2015
Other things we have been doing for years to save money:
- cloth napkins
- stay home (consolidate errands, invite others over)
- make everything from scratch (bread products, canned products, convenience foods, etc.)
The next thing I am trying is going no-poo (water-only).
But one big thing I have had to do in order to really save money:
Change My Way of Thinking
When I started going meatless, I felt like I was ‘depriving’ my children by not feeding them meat and dairy (especially cheese and ice cream). I tried to keep other (costly) things to make up for that. Things like cheerios, coconut milk, raisins, etc. – all expensive things. I recently started to realize that those things are not necessary and dropping them will save us close to $10/week. That is a HUGE savings!
So I dropped them from the grocery list. We eat oatmeal about half of the week for breakfast. The kids used to not like oatmeal so we would only have it once a week. Now that we are having it more, in order to make it more special, I am letting them choose the toppings. Every child has a day they get to choose what we put in our oatmeal. The choices have been weird but they like it. One child chose, jelly and walnuts, another chose peanut butter and honey, another chose dried mango and cinnamon.
Does it take more time and effort to cloth diaper and use soap nuts? Yes. Is it worth it? Yes. I could say, ‘It’s a sacrifice I am willing to make’ but really, it’s not a sacrifice. It is just a choice. A choice to not have instant gratification all the time. A choice to slow down.
Is homeschooling difficult? At times, yes. But it is a choice. A choice to stick it out with my kids, to learn and grow with them, to invest in them.
I have REALLY had to change my way of thinking in order to grow all of our food! (I am still doing that). If I really want to take this seriously, I have to be willing to go out in the cold and uncover the hoop house so the plants don’t overheat. We have to be willing to not take time off when things need to be planted and harvested (that doesn’t mean we don’t take time off, it just means we plan it around the busy seasons). I have to be willing to wake up at the crack of dawn in the heat of the summer to pick blueberries and plant more seeds.
With my American, suburban upbringing, I could say, ‘It’s just not worth it. I’ll pay someone else to grow my food. I’ll send my kids to someone else to learn. I’ll buy for convenience. It’s just not worth it.’ If only I change my point of view…I see it truly IS worth it! 🙂
I hope you have enjoyed this series of posts and maybe you have gotten a few ideas to try. I hope the posts coming up will be all about gardening! It is still terribly cold here – I’m ready to start this new season!!