Ways We Save – Part 2

Last week, we shared some ways the Fetch clan saves a little moolah.  Here are a few more ideas that work for us.  We would love to hear the ways you creatively save as well.

We use cloth paper towels/napkins.
Last year, we made the switch to cloth “paper” towels.  We keep maybe one roll of regular paper towels on hand for those messes that just need to be tossed.  Otherwise, we’ve gotten completely comfortable with the cloth towels.  
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Stock up on sale or buy-one-get-one free items.
When certain items go on sale at our grocery store, we generally try to combine that sale with a coupon for added savings, and we stock up on that item since sales tend to run on about a 6-week cycle.  We don’t stock pile, we just get what we think we’ll use in that 6-week time frame.  There are some standard items we buy in bulk from our local warehouse store as well.  We’ve done the math and it really makes sense to buy certain items in bulk.

Use credit cards that offer rewards.
There are all sorts of choices out there:  airline miles, cash back, gift cards, etc.  Definitely use one that offers something in return (just be sure to pay any balance you have at the end of the month to avoid any crazy finance charges.)  Recently, we got a new blender and a new waffle maker by cashing in our points.  We were excited to get those free deliveries!  We’ve also been able to snag gift cards for dinner and home improvement stores.

We skip coffee shops.
Okay, we do treat ourselves when we’re out and about every now and then.  But for day-to-day coffee consumption we have a great espresso/coffee maker and we make ourselves a delicious coffee drink in a to-go cup each day.  Much better than spending $4-$5 per beverage at an expensive coffee shop.  

Vacation with a kitchen.
The past few vacations we’ve taken with the kids have been awesome!  In order to avoid the expense of eating out every meal, we’ve booked lodging that includes a kitchen.  The cost really isn’t much more than booking a couple of hotel rooms and we save a lot by not eating out every meal of the trip.  Plus it allows us to eat a little healthier.
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Bake your own bread.
Lucky for me, my husband is an excellent baker.  Usually, each week, he bakes two loaves over the weekend, which allows us fresh, tasty whole grain bread all week.  Have you noticed how expensive whole grain bread is?  
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Update the way you do laundry.
Having well water is a definite savings, so that’s a plus.  But it is not so kind to laundry, especially whites.  In our efforts to remedy this issue, we researched and eventually purchased the Pure Wash Laundry Purifier.  This method uses no, that’s right NO, laundry detergent or fabric softener.  So you can cross those two expenses off your grocery list.  And it uses only cold water, so it’s an energy saver too.  We occasionally add a little detergent if it’s an especially grimy load, but otherwise, the Pure Wash performs as promised.
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We also line dry some of our wash.  The kids cringe at the sight of laundry hanging and are worried that we’ve lost our minds.  “Isn’t that what they did in the olden days?!”  But, I gotta tell ya, it makes for fresh laundry – and don’t forget a lower power bill!  Typically I line dry and then throw some items in the dryer to fluff for a couple of minutes.  And we don’t line dry everything.  We really love fluffy bath towels and you just can’t get that from drying on the line.
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We DIY what we can.
I must brag that my handy husband really can do just about anything.  And with me as his lovely assistant, well, there’s just not much we can’t tackle.  In our current home, we’ve remodeled the kitchen, installed wood floors, changed out lighting, built a chicken coop, and have many more projects on the docket.  Often our biggest obstacle is time, so we do carefully weigh all options when selecting those things that we’ll pay someone else to do.  For example, we just paid to have someone replace our 25 year old fence.  And since it took 4 guys 5 days to do it, it was well worth our time and energy to have that task completed by someone else.  Our kitchen was a project we looked forward to tackling head on ourselves…
kitchen-hallway to kitchen-before   kitchen-hallway to kitchen-after

We are happy to share any other ideas we come up with.  Hope you will too.  Every little bit helps!

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