Hello, and welcome to this week’s Festival of Frugality! It’s a bit scary hosting one of these things all by myself for the first time, so I brought along a good friend of mine today – Mr. Frugal Gump. I hope you don’t mind ;) As many of you know, Frugal has led a very financially rewarding life, and I thought we could all learn from an experienced man like himself.
We sorted through all the chocolates in this week’s box of frugality, and now share them with you for all to enjoy. We hope you get as much out of them as we did!
Mr. Gump and I’s Favorite Picks
“Mama always had a way of explaining things so I could understand them.”
I couldn’t agree more! And when it comes to personal finance, there can be some pretty complicated issues out there. Lucky for us, we have some pretty fabulous bloggers who can break it down and get the points across easily – and we love them for it. Here’s to our favorite picks this week, and here’s to mama!
- Bad Acne = Credit Card Debt – Need i say more? haha.. Brandon Patchin from One Chance to Live compares little pimples with credit card use – AWESOME. (his writing style also reminds me of someone else’s ;) )
- Save Money, Get A Divorce! Jim from Blueprint for Financial Prosperity does it again with another devil’s advocate post. I love a little controversy every now and then, and Jim’s really getting good at it!
- Yard sale shopping with my daughter posted by mbhunter who adds, “It’s easier to splurge at a yard sale.” You know it! Three of my favorite things going on here: yard sales, splurging, and children :)
- What I pay for health care by Jacob from Early Retirement Extreme. This guy cracks. me. up. Seriously, i dare you to read it without laughing. It’s definitely a “way of thinking” that’s for sure!
“Now you wouldn’t believe me if I told you, but I could run like the wind blows. From that day on, if I was ever going somewhere, I was RUN-NING!”
We live in a different world that Mr. Gump these days, and unfortunately we can’t rely on our feet to get us where we need to be all the time. We’re not totally out of luck though! Check out these bad boys for some great travel tips to help lighten the load this week.
- Fun and Frugal in Western North Carolina posted by Stephanie over at Stop the Ride! adding, “Who says vacations have to be expensive?”
- 10 tips to save money on gasoline posted by Nina at Queercents.
- Gasonline is Cheap – Graphical Cost Of Liquids by The Happy Rock.
- Top Ten Tips – Taking A Staycation by Tip Diva. With gas prices and travel costs rising, many people opt just to stay home on their vacation time – hence, a “staycation.” But being at home, or close to it, can make it seem like less of a break. Here are ways to ignore the fact that you’re home and enjoy your time off.
- 10 Ways To Reduce Petrol Costs presented by Tejvan Pettinger from Economics Essays.
- When Fuel Prices Go Up, America Slows Down by Lisa Spinelli over at Greener Pastures, who adds “The face-paced life of many Americans has a new ball and chain: fuel.” Well put.
“It was so clear, Jenny, it looked like there were two skies one on top of the other. And then in the desert, when the sun comes up, I couldn’t tell where heaven stopped and the earth began. It’s so beautiful.”
Mother Earth loves you, so it’s time to love Mother Earth back! Here are some green pointers to help get you started.
- 10 Ways to Reuse a Glass Jar posted by Tiffany Washko over at Natural Family Living Blog.
- People helping people by Joanna at keeping feet who’s found a couple easy, low-cost and targeted ways to be generous and donate to very specific projects & causes around the world.
- Reusing the waste: Home Edition from Jason Isbell over at Tired Garden.
- 12 Recipes for Homemade Cleansers posted by Jennifer Derrick at Saving Advice Blog who adds “With the prices of everything skyrocketing, making your own cleaning products can be an easy way to save money. In addition to saving money, most are non-toxic, environmentally friendly, and safe for use around pets and children.” Sounds good to me!
“The best thing about visiting the President is the food! Now, since it was all free, and I wasn’t hungry but thirsty, I must’ve drank me fifteen Dr. Peppers.” Enjoy these frugal-tastic posts by some pretty damn frugal bloggers ;)
- Frugal Habits that Have Improved my Life posted by the Coupon Artist at artofthecoupon.com.
- How to dine at fancy-schmancy restaurants on the CHEAP by sarah at SARAHSPY.
- 3 Tips On How To Save Money On Baby Clothes presented at The Financial Blogger, who learned a few tricks in order to save some bucks on children’s clothes.
- Simple Tips To Save Money At The Movies by Fitz Villafuerte at Ready To Be Rich. With a lot of great movies coming out now, here are some tips on how you can save on spending without limiting the fun.
- Five Ways to Entertain Yourself for Free (Or Cheap) posted by Redd Horrocks-Maier from Earthlier Happy is the Rose Distilled. Five easy ideas for when you can’t afford to go to the movies (if you don’t use one of the tips above, of course).
- House Bling on the Cheap by Wenchypoo over at Wisdom From Wenchypoo’s Mental Wastebasket, who adds “Here’s a quick, easy, and cheap way to get the look of stainless steel appliances without having to go out and buy them–great for selling homes, staging homes, upping the estimated market value, or just a general spruce-up.”
- Make Your Own Home Scent Diffuser posted by Kelly at My $mall C€nts.
- How to Make a Versatile Cloth Wall Chart posted by HowToMe. Are you looking for a truly custom, perpetual calendar or a very versatile wall chart? If so, here’s your spot.
- Do It Yourself Projects As A Source Of Alternative Income written by The Shark Investor.
- My First Project On My New Sewing Machine by Frugal Babe. Great job!
- Frugal Food-Part Three: Beans! posted by Jenn at Frugal Upstate, who’s compiling a list of tasty, inexpensive dishes to help us all stretch our food budgets. Sounds good to me :)
“And cause I was a gazillionaire, and I liked doin’ it so much, I cut that grass for free.”
While we can’t do everything for free this Summer, we sure can cut down on the costs! Peruse through some of these articles for helpful tips this season.
- Summer Savings Series #12: Save Money and Get Fit with These Summertime Activities and Programs by Prime Time Money.
- You Know What I Did This Summer – Save Money! posted by Are You Going To Be This Way The Rest of The Time I Know You?
- 8 Cheap Summer Fun Ideas posted by Broke Grad Student.
- Tips for finding cheap day camps for your kids presented by Yi Hui Chang over at The Simple Wealth.
- How to Save on Summer Cooling Expenses by Dana at Not Made Of Money.
- Keep Your Kids Entertained for the Summer from DJ at The Family Wallet.
- Our Frugal Summer Birthday by Grey over at Frugal Fu.
- 11 Fun & Frugal Summertime Activities from Madison at My Dollar Plan.
- Viva Simplicity posted by GP from Making Montana Memories – Come on Inn.
- Frugal Events for the 4th of July presented by Bryce from Save and Conquer, who’s wonderful wife has been looking into things to do with other family members on the upcoming 4th of July weekend.
- One Hundred Pushups For A Healthy Fit Frugal Summer by FFB at Free From Broke, who gets into a free exercise program to help you get in shape this summer!
- 10 Money Saving Vacation Tips presented by RC from Think Your Way to Wealth.
Questions, Questions Everywhere
“Now for some reason I fit in the army like one of them round pegs. It’s not really hard. You just make your bed real neat and remember to stand up straight and always answer every question with “Yes, drill sergeant.”
These bloggers throw out some thought-provoking questions. Luckily, they give you the answers too ;) And before you ask, “Yes, drill sergeant” isn’t one of them (Sorry Gump).
- Do You Hide Purchases From Your Spouse or Partner (Apparently Like Many Americans)? posted by GBlogger from CAN I GET RICH ON A SALARY. I’d like to answer this with a solid Maybe ;)
- What is Rich? asks Phil from Phil for Humanity. Everyone has their own definition of being rich, and Phil sums up his pretty nicely.
- Is being frugal patriotic? wonders Christa at FrugalMomLA. My vote is YES, but it really depends on what day you catch me ;)
- How high is inflation? aks LAL from LivingAlmostLarge, who adds, “Do we feel it more because of our stagnating wages?”
- Success: Are We There Yet? asks David B. Bohl at Slow Down Fast Today! who also aks, “What’s your perception of success? Do you see it as ever-elusive? Is it a work in progress? Or is success more of a final destination for you?”. Don’t worry, he gives you answers :)
- How Much House Can I Afford? How to Find the The Right Answer For You posted by Steve Faber from Getting Debt Free.
“Lieutenant Dan got me invested in some kind of fruit company (Apple). So then I got a call from him, saying we don’t have to worry about money no more. And I said, that’s good! One less thing.”
Oh man, i love that quote :) That Gump is hilarious! But it’s true – you get investing/saving down pat, and you can continue on living happily knowing your money’s working for you. Of course, getting a firm grip on it is the hard part, so perhaps these will help!
- A Dollar Saved is Two Dollars Earned but Two Dollars Earned is Twenty Dollars Saved posted by MoneyNing, who shares a new look at income versus savings! The title itself rocks, you should totally check it out.
- Picking up Pennies is a good idea says Kevin over at The Red Stapler Chronicles. Agreed.
- The idiots guide to saving presented by Michael Miles at Effortless Wealth and Abundance.
- Easy Index Investing – The Cheap Way. posted by Heather Johnson at StockWeb.
- dealing with high food prices by deepali at Paradigm Shifted.
“Oh, yes sir. Bit me right in the buttocks. They said it was a million dollar wound, but the army must keep that money ’cause I still haven’t seen a nickel of that million dollars.”
You can never have too many coupons, or discounts for that matter. You won’t always remember to bring them when you go shopping, but that’s another story altogether ;) Here’s a whole mess of goodies for ya.
- Military Discounts from Military Finance Network who shares a list of Military Discounts for military members to save money! (HOOH-RAH)
- Get a Head Start on School Supplies at Office Max posted by Pamela Grundy on Personal Finance Analyst.
- How and Where to Buy Cheap Flowers written by Aryn at Sound Money Matters. who exclaims that even on a tight budget, you can afford flowers! Amen to that.
- New Ralphs coupon policy presented by Chief Family Officer who adds, “Just when I was thinking about shopping more at Ralphs, they cut their coupon policy in half!” Well that’s not fair.
- Cheap Canon All-In-One Printer shared by Christine Talley from Chicago: cheap! Christine’s printer died! She shares her experience finding a frugal replacement, which is a great shortcut for anyone needing one :)
- Early Termination Fees Slashed at T-Mobile posted by Sun from The Sun’s Financial Diary.
- $200 Free Groceries, Over Halfway There shared by Cash Money Life. Great ideas!
- Save Over $5,000 on Sneaky Fees posted by Free Money Finance.
- How I Saved 30% on Breakfast by Kevin over at No Debt Plan who saved 30% on his breakfast for the next 8 weeks.
Other Random Goodness
“When I was in China on the All-American Ping Pong team, I just loved playing ping-pong with my Flexolite ping pong paddle. “
Some other good financial stuff I couldn’t quite tell where to put. “Random” categories are like boxes of chocolate – you never know what you’re gonna get (I’m sorry, Gump REALLY wanted to put that in here).
- Control Your Wild Wedding Costs! Set Up A Wedding Budget posted by Silicon Valley Blogger from The Digerati Life. Oh yeah, VERY familiar with this stuff!
- Personal Asset Inventory Template posted by KCLau over at KCLau’s Money Tips, who explains why one should write a will.
- Let’s Not Forget Depression is a Dirty Word by Lise from Frugal in the Fruitlands.
- Confirmed. We are getting poorer as a nation confirmed by AndyS at $aving to Invest, who talks about the sad state of our eroding wealth :(
- Wedding Tips: Get Three+ Catering Quotes posted by DMH from Daily Money Hack.
- Coins to Cash posted by Elias over at Finance Puzzle. Coinstar, here we come!
- Reader Feedback Request – Practical Tips For Personal Finance Newbies posted at No Credit Needed.
- My Mobile Phone: A Want vs. Need Example presented by Ryan Suenaga at Uncommon Cents.
- Paying By Credit Card At the Gas Pump and Refusing To Use Cash by Raymond from Money Blue Book: Personal Finance Blog.
- How I Came to Peace with My Credit Card Debt posted by Andrew Heath over at The Gift of Life who adds, “When credit card debt becomes overwhelming, you can still have a peaceful and happy life. Happiness is not easy, but it is something we can choose.” No diggity.
- 8 Ways the Bush Administration Has Caused the Oil Price Boom by Neelakantha from Currency Trading.
- Grow Your Own Recession Victory Garden by Savvy Frugality.
- Loan scams: 6 loan pitfalls to avoid posted by Joy Harrison over at Money Sense.
- The Value of Pictures and Memories from The Writer’s Coin.
- The Importance of Learning to Let Go by Dorian Wales at The Personal Financier.
WOW, so this beats my record for longest post! haha… It is now time for Mr. Gump and I to hit “publish”, and rest our tired little fingers. We hope you find some great articles in here! And if you like what you saw, think about signing up to my feed :)
Be sure to check out next week’s festival over at Squawkfox. Thanks everyone!