Keeping It Simple: Cheap and Easy Lunch

While the Frugalwoods enjoy their daily lunch of rice and beans, this is what I survive on at work: I eat breakfast during my commute, consisting of an oatmeal cupcake and a hardboiled egg.  At lunchtime, I munch on peanut-butter cracker sandwiches, carrots, a granola bar, and some grapes.  The grapes …

A Frugal Valentine’s Day: DIY Heart-Shaped Crayons

It seems like we just successfully survived Christmas without succumbing to the pressure to spend, spend, spend.  Now, it’s time for another retailer-driven holiday.  Valentine’s Day is the perfect opportunity for businesses to convince the public that if you really love someone, you need to buy them lots of stuff …

11 New Ways We’re Going To Save Money This Year

We did pretty well in 2014, our first year of practicing conscious frugality. I cut back on things like buying lunch or going out for coffee.  We didn’t buy much clothing.  I started cutting everyone’s hair – including my own.  In 2015, I’ve been trying to think of new ways …

What Do You Really Need For A New Baby?

American parents should heed a lesson in minimalism from Finland.  Our norm is to celebrate an impending birth with frivolous and unnecessary gifts.  Guests are invited to a banquet hall to enjoy food, games, and admire cute baby things.  Before the baby shower, parents-to-be will head out to one of those chain stores and receive a cool …

What Is FIRE?

FIRE is financial independence and early retirement.  ERE is the other acronym commonly used, which stands for early retirement extreme.  I knew nothing of these concepts a year ago.  Now, I feel enlightened and driven by these ambitious and rebellious lifestyle designs. To add some perspective, let’s ask the question: …

DIY Fancy Hair Ties

  Looking for a cheap and easy do-it-yourself project?  Make yourself some of these fancy “no-crease” hair ties. Step 1: Go on Etsy and order a big bundle of “fold over elastic.”  They have a seemingly limitless supply of different colors, textures, and patterns.  I purchased a variety of colors of satin …

Hunting For A Better Cell-Phone Plan

  I have used Verizon Wireless for more than a decade.  The service is good, but it is just too expensive, especially in our current debt situation.  To be fair, I gave them a chance.  I called to investigate whether there were any cheaper plans.  Unfortunately for Verizon, we already …

Rescuing Food From The Jaws of Pregnancy-Brain Defeat

In working towards being more frugal, common sense dictates that you should try to avoid wasting food.  The things that we buy to eat, afterall, make up one of our largest categories of expenses, along with housing and transportation.  I have tried to be mindful of what we have, what …

2014 Financial Accomplishments and Plans for 2015

2014 Financial Accomplishments We paid off approximately $12,000 in credit card debt!  We finished payments on my car.  And, I launched this blog. How did we do it?  I attempted to go the entire year without purchasing any clothing and did pretty well.  I bought one pair of good sandals for …

DIY Christmas Presents

This year has represented a new journey into efficiency, minimalization, and frugality. However, even in past years, I have usually tried to inlcude some do-it-yourself presents in my Christmas giving. My two main projects for 2014: hidden-treasure books and personalized magnets. Hidden-Treasure Books Mr. Smith helped with this project, but …