In Thrifty Living

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Line Drying

Drying clothes in the winter

Drying clothes in the winter

When I was little, my mom hung out our clothes to save money. As we got older, we had the privilege of helping her. Now, I hang out my laundry year round. We try to plan our laundry days around the good weather so that we can hang it out.

But what about dryer sheets? Instead of using dryer sheets, I use about a 1/4 cup of vinegar. When I tell people that, they may look at me like I am crazy. Recently, one person walked up to me and smelled my clothes (thank goodness I didn’t just finish exercising!!!) to see if they smelled like vinegar. They didn’t detect any vinegar.

How much do I save by line drying? Well, it depends on the cost of drying with your particular dryer. How much electricity does it use during a typical load. According to The Simple Dollar, the average dryer uses 3.3 KWH of electricity, or about 36 cents, for a small load. 36 cents adds up. My mom always reminds me that, at present, the government doesn’t tax savings. I do 10-12 loads in an average week. I’m saving between $3.60 and $4.32 per week plus my clothes last longer.

Cook From Scratch

Homemade pizzaAs a part of our homeschool, we do home economics from a young age. So, the kids are learning how to cook from scratch. Last night, my 7 year old son, Ethan, made homemade pizza from scratch with the guidance of my 12 year son, Jared. I didn’t keep track of the cost of the ingredients when I got them because I wasn’t planning to blog about how much money I saved. The slice looks a little small because I took a few bites out of it first.

However, I’m sure we spent significantly less than we would have for a medium stuffed crust pizza. Yep, Ethan was ambitious. His first homemade pizza couldn’t be ordinary, it had to have a stuffed crust.

This is the homemade pizza recipe he used, by Ann Freeman:
homemade pizza dough recipe by Ann FreemanHe substituted mozzarella with cheddar. For meat, he used sausage. He likes to put on the toppings then the cheese because it causes the toppings to flavor the sauce and crust, plus he thinks it will make the cheese and the toppings stay on better. He used spaghetti sauce one time and pizza sauce another time.

Earlier in the day, my 10 year old son, Isaac, made whole wheat bread from scratch because his younger brothers and sister wanted bread. It saved me from going to the store to buy bread. Next time he makes it, we’ll post pictures. Here’s the recipe that ALWAYS works for us by Pam Reid:

homemade whole wheat bread by Pam Reid
We all know what happens when we go to the store for just one thing. We usually end up buying more, sometimes an entire cart full. The key is to have basic ingredients on hand so that if you change your meal plans, you can accommodate them without going to the store.

Update: Ethan wanted to perfect his pizza making skills. After practicing a few times this is how his pizza looked. Delicious, right?

Ethan's Rectangle pizzaEthan's Round pizza






So, what do you do to be thrifty? Are you likely to try any of these suggestions or have you already tried them? Tell us about it!

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