It's been awhile since I blogged about ways we try to be frugal and save money. We don't have a very extravagant lifestyle, that's for sure. Our new house will be our most extravagant thing just about ever for us and the only way we are affording it is because we are willing to be frugal about so many other aspects of our life.
Clothing: we wear simple clothes. Mostly jeans and t-shirts, though of course we do have some dress up clothes, when needed (which is pretty rare these days). DH used to wear Levi's all the time. But the price got up to $35-$40 per pair. He tried Wrangler's jeans (Walmart or Target) for about $18 and likes them fine. Jackets last us a long time. I wear jeans, tops and t-shirts for the most part. I'm about 50/50 for nicer tops vs. t-shirts. In winter I layer up w/long sleeved t-shirts and sweaters. We don't have a monthly clothing budget, since we don't buy clothes that often. My last pair of jeans were from Walmart online, $10 black Friday deal. I wish I would have gotten 2! My jeans last me several years, so I only tend to buy one or two pair a year. I did just have to order DH some underwear. He only likes a particular kind (of course!) that are JCPenney brand. I was able to find a $10 off $25 coupon, which covered shipping of $8.95.
Haircuts: I cut DH's hair with some Wahl haircutting clippers. He likes it shaved almost to bald (well, that and he's now bald on top anyway LOL) and I do it about once a month. Me, I've been trimming my hair myself now, with some nice sharp hair cutting scissors for $10. It's gotten all one length now, which I'm not really liking, so I'll probably go into somewhere like Great Clips sometime soon and get some layers cut into it for about $15. Then I'll be good for at least another 6 months or so. I stopped coloring it a couple of years ago, even though it was only about $6-7 to buy the color to do myself, I just got tired of always having to do it. I was at our town hardware store this morning picking up something and the older gentleman who works there asked me where I got my beautiful white hair from. LOL. I said it was courtesy of my grandfather :)
Grocery shopping: We shop Walmart, Target and a regular grocery store. We stock up on sales. I make almost all our meals at home. We eat out about 3 times a month - either a stop at fast food in the city or a visit (once a month at most) to a local restaurant. Mostly we try to save money by just eating at home and not eating out very much. I used to know a family of 3 that basically ate out every meal of the day (any surprise they were like 300+ pounds each?) and spent $3000 a month eating out. Just blew my mind.
Vehicles: DH's truck is a 1999. My car is a 2011. We don't have car payments. We do our own oil changes and also things like air filters, fluids, etc. DH is good about keeping tires rotated. Also, since our vehicles are older, we do not carry full coverage. Just the minimums, for the most part.
Travel - nope, just don't do it. LOL. It's pretty rare for us to travel on a vacation. We are both homebodies and would rather just stay home or explore around where we live then deal with airports, long car rides and hotel rooms.
Home maintenance and yard work: we try to do everything ourselves that we can, even what repairs we can do. Sometimes we've had to google how to do repairs (like to washer and dryer) but we've figured them out and saved money.
Prescriptions: I switched to using my insurance's mail order. Aside from the obvious savings in time by not having to make a trip to the city to pick up (not always convenient) I am saving about $6 a month vs. in store pharmacy pricing and I get a 90 day supply. So much more convenient.
Cell phones: while we do have iphones, mine is over 3 years old (5s). I'll keep using it until it dies on me (knock on wood, and I'm still hoping my boss will throw one of the old 6s company iphones she has laying around, my way). We are also on the lowest data use plan they offer. Since we are usually at home (using our own wi-fi) or many of the places we visit have free wi-fi, we hardly even use the 3 gb of data that we pay for. Plus we get to carry over like an extra gig a month, so always have 4 gb to use. I wish there was a smaller Verizon plan! But, I stick with Verizon because it works great for us, here in the boonies.
Hobbies: mine is reading. That is free since I don't buy books. I borrow e-books from the library and download to my ipad mini. DH isn't quite sure yet what his hobbies are, LOL. Some stuff he's liked in the past cost too much money. I have a feeling when he gets his nice big shop he will start doing some woodworking projects. That will cost some for the tools that he doesn't already have. Mostly he just likes to sit on the computer and surf and watch tv. I'm going to try my hand at a few chickens and a chicken coop. We'll see how that goes!
Buy used! When we want/need something we look on Craigslist and often times we can find it used and save some big bucks vs. buying new. Everything we buy new online, I always do a search to see where I can find it the cheapest and look for coupon codes.
Basically, while we like to stay home, we also like having a nice house and a nice yard, so that is where our money and energy is focused. Surrounding ourselves in an aesthetically pleasing environment feels as good as a spending money on a vacation, to us.