ellie is organizing and exploring
- We cut up our credit cards.
- Refinancing the mortgage was a big one. $100 less a month.
- Joined netflix, receiving only four DVDs a month for $12.71 a month. We can account for how many movies we’re watching; plus we’re watching four films for $3.18/each. (We’re not perfect here … sometimes, we’ll walk over to Blockbuster and rent an extra movie.)
- Don’t go out to the movies, unless we really want to see the film on the big screen. We’ve seen about a handful of films on the big screen in 2005.
- We’ve seriously reduced our impulse buying … like seeing a book we want and instantly buying it without thinking about it.
- My husband (Mr. F) has been learning how to fix problems with our cars. He changed the oil himself in both of our cars.
- I’ve stopped going to a hairstylst to cut my hair. Mr. F isn’t comfortable with buzz cutting his own hair.
- We try to eat out at restaurants less … though this is probably our one splurge/overindulgence.
- When we do go out to restaurants, we try to share one meal.
- Slowly, we’ve been replacing as many incandescent lightbulbs as possible with florescent ones. We’ve been doing this for awhile; however, have picked up the pace in the past six months.
- Mr. F walks and rides his bike more, instead of using his small pick-up truck.
- Instead of purchasing birthday/special event cards, we either make them from paper we already have or use old calendars to make cards.
- Attempting to convince Mr. F that it’s a wonderful habit to turn off lights upon exiting a room. We really need those timed-lights for our hallways. On for a minute, then turns off by itself. Plenty of time to walk through.
(There are more … but I must go for now.)
In the past, we’ve reduced these expenses:
- Bought a battery recharger, which recharges regular, brandname batteries in the most common sizes (ie., AA, D). Batteries can be recharged up to ten times.
- In the winter, keep the house cold at night, and wear layers of warm clothing, including hats, wool socks and even gloves; pile on the blankets.
- Dropped our landline, and use only cellphones. Many of our phone calls are long distance.
- We stopped having a person clean our house a couple of years ago. That was $8/hour for 2-3 hours once a month, or $16-$24/month.
- Installed a low-flow showerhead in the bathroom. That dramatically cut down our water bill. I take loooong showers … it’s part of my anxiety-reducing habits I’m not willing to give up.