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Home Economics 101

Welcome to the Home Ec Section. Matters of the family sometimes bring joy and other times bring grief. But it is never trivial: Family matters! Feel free to discuss topics such as the sanctity of marriage; the awesome responsibility of raising children; the struggles of communication problems; the grief of losing a loved one; or anything else that relates to the home and family. However, due to the more personal nature of this section, I ask that you would be especially thoughtful of the readers' feelings. My earnest hope and prayer is that the discussions in this section will help families grow in the love of Christ.

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Budgeting

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  • Budgeting

    So we've never been big spenders or attempted to live outside our means. But here lately we've had to figure out how to stretch our dollars REALLY far. As in how to make less than $100 last two weeks for a family of four. It can work but it has to be done carefully especially when essentials are needed. But we're making it. Here's a brief breakdown of it.
    We had a stock supply of toothbrushes and toothpaste, no need for anymore. We also have bought tissues in bulk, and previously when the cash has been available have bought a small supply of diapers wipes and formula so the baby has her needs met for the next two weeks. Same with shampoos I frequent the bargains after Christmas, so we have plenty for 2-3 months.

    I recently noticed the cleaning supply was running low, so instead of buying cleaners, I used the bulk cleaners, and Diluted them into empty spray bottles which roughly costs anywhere from 3-11 cents per bottle. However the bulk cleaners were also previous purchases.
    Laundry I found a good deal on powder detergent and the spread cost is 12.5 cents per load.
    We made our way and found low cost food. That left us with enough for gas in one car, and a weekly purchase of fresh produce.
    I'm considering looking into canning our own vegetables, I think that way I can use the farmers market in bulk during the summer months and not have to purchase any vegetables and fruits in the fall or winter.

    What is it that y'all do for money saving?
    A happy family is but an earlier heaven.
    George Bernard Shaw

  • #2
    My wife is really good at couponing, and regularly gets a heck of a deal at CVS Pharmacy. In fact, I think she was in the top 1% of CVS savers last year.

    I occasionally donate plasma for some easy cash. If you have a Biolife Plasma Center near you and the thought of a rather large needle in your arm doesn't bother you, you might look into it. It usually takes about an hour each time, and if you do it twice a week (the max) you can make about $200 a month. Bring a book to read.
    I DENOUNCE DONALD J. TRUMP AND ALL HIS IMMORAL ACTS.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Catholicity View Post
      What is it that y'all do for money saving?
      One of the biggest things was eat out less. OR when we DO eat out, skip the appetizer and dessert. We often will share a meal, and in that case may add an appetizer. But we ALWAYS drink water as opposed to soft drinks, because that can easily add $5.00 to the meal. We started this when we were in a Stewardship class many years ago when we were young and broke, and I have just learned that I don't need soft drinks with meals.

      Many times, it's little things that add up.
      "Neighbor, how long has it been since you’ve had a big, thick, steaming bowl of Wolf Brand Chili?”

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Zymologist View Post
        My wife is really good at couponing, and regularly gets a heck of a deal at CVS Pharmacy. In fact, I think she was in the top 1% of CVS savers last year.

        I occasionally donate plasma for some easy cash. If you have a Biolife Plasma Center near you and the thought of a rather large needle in your arm doesn't bother you, you might look into it. It usually takes about an hour each time, and if you do it twice a week (the max) you can make about $200 a month. Bring a book to read.
        Interesting.

        We had a person who donated blood because he had a very rare blood factor they wanted.. He had to take leave to do so like about once a month.. My top boss found out, and had all his leave restored. Class act. But I didn't know they paid you for your blood. Thanks for the info. I guess the people I overheard weren't joking about selling their blood.
        Watch your links! http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/fa...corumetiquette

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        • #5
          I stock up on hair products and toilet tissue big time. I'm trying to be more creative with my foodstuff but maybe that's for the other thread...
          Watch your links! http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/fa...corumetiquette

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          • #6
            I'm trying crockpot rice. If it works out, that's another way to stretch a budget without too much effort.

            I've also been blessed with a 25 pound bag of bread flour. I'm told this will work for anything even tortillas.
            Watch your links! http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/fa...corumetiquette

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            • #7
              A little specific, but if you have a wood stove, you can save money by using a wet paper towel, dipping it in the wood ashes, and using it to clean the stove glass instead of a chemical cleaner. Works really well.

              I also stopped buying/drinking pop and instead get water with a lemon slice in it. Helps with weight control too.

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              • #8
                Welp...rice came out ok. Note to self: read directions that said to put said crock pot on high. Left it on low for a whole hour. A little soggy, but...and it turns out it was done anyway. Power went out.
                Watch your links! http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/fa...corumetiquette

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Catholicity View Post
                  So we've never been big spenders or attempted to live outside our means. But here lately we've had to figure out how to stretch our dollars REALLY far. As in how to make less than $100 last two weeks for a family of four.
                  It's been a long time since my starving grad student days, but I can still remember being where you're at. Cath, I don't want to offend, cause I know how some folks — okay, me! — could never stand the idea of asking for help but ... it's time to swallow some pride and hit up the food pantries. And speaking o' ... you're tight? Humans don't live by bread alone. Put together an Amazon wish list, and put a link to it in the thread. There's plenty of us around here who've got a bit more than we need to get by nowadays, and prefer to help out one-on-one instead of subsidizing CEO salaries at organized charities like the United Way.



                  Here's some habits I picked up back then that I never lost.

                  Library. Of course nowadays I can get any book I want for free just by writing the publisher, but inter-library loan works nearly as well for civilians, which is especially useful if you live in the boonies.

                  MagicJack. Okay, it wasn't available back then, but it's in the "monthly bill" category, something you want to eliminate as far as possible. I double-pumped the five-year renewal last time and my phone bill is now bumpkiss for the next ten years ... and Skype.

                  Flea market pressure cooker and dry beans. There is no cheaper meal known to man. Pair 'em with any grain — rice, bread, bulgur, etc. — to make a complete protein. I lived on that and nothing else for months at a time as a grad student. That, and sprouts.

                  Bicycle, with a sturdy rack ... and the best lock you can afford. The easiest way to save on gas is not to buy any. First time you have a wheel stolen, you realize how much that last one can save you.

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                  • #10
                    whatever you do, don't give in to the temptation to just charge it on a credit card. That works only in the very short term and pretty soon you are spending all of your extra just trying to keep up with the payments. Instead even when it's hard, put away a little bit each week into savings and let that be your emergency fund. Even if it is just a dollar or two a week.

                    Also you might need to make bulk foods like soups, chili, pasta, that can last several days. You can freeze some and switch up your left overs.

                    also if you are good at crafts or something, you might think about selling some hand made stuff on Pinterest, Ebay, or someplace like that.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by DesertBerean View Post
                      Interesting.

                      We had a person who donated blood because he had a very rare blood factor they wanted.. He had to take leave to do so like about once a month.. My top boss found out, and had all his leave restored. Class act. But I didn't know they paid you for your blood. Thanks for the info. I guess the people I overheard weren't joking about selling their blood.
                      I'm not too sure of the specifics, but plasma donation is different than whole blood donation. The plasma is actually separated out and the red blood cells are returned to you, which is why you can do the donation twice a week. At Biolife, which is where I donate, you'll typically make $20 for the first donation of the week and $30 for the second. They regularly have promotions though, so for example this February you could make $50 on the second donation of each week rather than $30.
                      I DENOUNCE DONALD J. TRUMP AND ALL HIS IMMORAL ACTS.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Zymologist View Post
                        I'm not too sure of the specifics, but plasma donation is different than whole blood donation. The plasma is actually separated out and the red blood cells are returned to you, which is why you can do the donation twice a week. At Biolife, which is where I donate, you'll typically make $20 for the first donation of the week and $30 for the second. They regularly have promotions though, so for example this February you could make $50 on the second donation of each week rather than $30.

                        I sold all of my organs on Ebay.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Oh and I know that KG likes to fish. Hunting and fishing are great ways to save money. And if you have a yard, you could grow veggies.

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                          • #14
                            The Dollar Store is not a bad place to pick up cleaning products inexpensively.
                            That's what
                            - She

                            Without a clear-cut definition of sin, morality becomes a mere argument over the best way to train animals
                            - Manya the Holy Szin (The Quintara Marathon)

                            I may not be as old as dirt, but me and dirt are starting to have an awful lot in common
                            Stephen R. Donaldson

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                            • #15
                              It might be worth looking into cloth diapers and a toilet-mounted diaper sprayer.
                              I'm not here anymore.

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