I've spent the better part of the morning listening to Bernanke talk about the sad state of our economy. I'm discouraged. He keeps talking about how we got here, but not a lot about good solutions for improvements.
Gas prices are up. Food prices are up. When income can't possibly keep up with inflation, what is there to do?
Well, here's what we're doing.
- We're driving a lot less. Hubby is picking up things we need at Target, or Walmart, or Home Depot on his way home from work. He drives right by the stores, so why make a trip when we don't have to? The local grocery and hardware store are within walking/biking distance, so if we need something right away, we're using our own physical power, instead of gas.
- We're eating out less. We don't go out to eat very often anyway, but now it's really not an option.
- We're using our Sam's Club membership much more. Since we're eating at home more, we're buying in bulk. It absolutely saves us money.
- We are absolutely not installing the window air conditioner this year. On hot days, I close up the house by noon, and use box fans to keep the air moving. It was 101 degree heat index last Thursday. Our house stayed at a comfortable 83 degrees.
- We are turning off lights when we don't need them. They throw heat during the day, so keeping them off keeps the house cool.
- We're tending and nurturing our garden. Right now, we have raspberries, black raspberries, peas, cucumbers and tomatoes starting to come in. Have you seen how much tomatoes cost at the grocery store?! Not to mention the salmonella scare? Our gardens are organic, and we know whose hands have touched the food.
- We are watering our gardens with rain water we've collected in plastic barrels. I refuse to pay for water, when it's only used for watering.
- On cool days, we make our own bread. Granted, the Kitchen Aid mixer my mom bought for us years ago, makes it a much easier process, but still, when a loaf of bread is almost $2.00, making our own is cost effective.
- We're buying 3 to 5 dozen eggs, instead of a dozen at a time. Much cheaper.
- Our kids are drinking much more water, much less juice and pop. It may even save on dentist bills down the road.
- And, we are using our library cards.
I'm sure there are other things we're doing, but these are the ones I can think of right now.
What are you doing to cut costs?