Monday, February 1, 2010

snow days, freebies and not-so-full-disclosures

Snow days in the south are fun. Everything shuts down and neighbors hang out in the streets and play. Yesterday the kids and their friends all gathered at a local sledding hill and enjoyed the rare treat. The roads today are sheets of ice...that's what happens when they are not plowed and cars pack the snow down. But it's fun all the same.

Daily Buck: This morning my husband and I walked (no gas expenditure, free exercise) to Walgreens and CVS to pick up the good deals and freebies: Walgreens has the following free with register rewards: Zicam cold sore swabs 10ct, vitamin schtick lipcare.14oz, Blink gel tears.34 oz, Joint Juice 30pk and Scalpicin wipes 12 pack. CVS has Doves men care body wash and Riteaid has Blink Tears or AMO contact solution (one or the other). I could list a whole bunch of other deals, but I'll stick with the freebies for now. I usually buy freebies whether I can use them or not, then I either sell them at a yardsale or donate them to someone who can use them.

I've been thinking about what it means to be frugal quite a bit the last few days. Mike and I will celebrate 18 years this summer, and up until 2003, our combined incomes rarely hit $40,000.00, and some years that was much less. The first year we were married, Mike hired in as a teacher making $17,000.00 ---that was 1994. We have always tithed at least 10% of our gross income; we have incresed this amount as our salary has increased. Several years into our marriage, we started taking advantage of the retirement plan through Mike's and then my work, increasing slowly the amount we put in until we were at 10%. I have always strived very hard to save money. When Mike was at a different Christian school, we had to make a choice. Either I could work full time and enroll the kids there, or I could work part time and homeschool (public school is not an option for us). I chose to homeschool and really loved it. I clip coupons, shop at yard sales and frequent thrift stores. We've always saved for and purchased used cars and bought houses that were valued considerably less than what we qualified for. Even though we make more money now, our lifestyle hasn't changed. I don't care if you make $12,000.00 or $200,000.00, you should still learn to be a good steward with what God has given you. That's really what this frugal life is all about and that's what I want people to walk away with.

Any thoughts?


  1. I concur Trish. I read this quote by C.S. Lewis 20 years ago or so and it slapped me in the face. I have tried to live with this in mind ever since. Knowing that Mr. Lewis was a wealthy man made it have a greater impact for me.

    If our expenditure on comforts, luxuries, amusements, etc., is up to the standard common among those with the same income as our own, we are probably giving away too little. If our charities do not pinch or hamper us, I should say they are too small. There ought to be things we should like to do and cannot because our charitable expenditure excludes them.
    C.S. Lewis

  2. I forgot to say that to be frugal is to be able to do the above.

  3. Great quote, Dawn! I may have to steal that hehehe!