Sunday, January 6, 2013
updated Feb 2013
#1-I love education but we have saved bundles in this department. I (because of an earlier pregnancy in our marriage than expected) finished an associates degree in computer information systems and use it for photography instead of finishing my traditional four year degree. For our family (our family) it was a wise move. Luke has plenty of loans to pay of for medical school, so not having any myself has been delightful. I home school the kiddos as well and have saved bundles in comparison to private education. Not that private school is necessary, but we would have considered it if the boys weren't at home.
#2-car loans. If at all possible, we pay cash for older cars. Our first car loan was interest free for the whole duration.
#3-we pay extra on our home loan each month.
#4-I buy clothes at Goodwill and mix them with things from H&M with results I am very happy with.
#5-I don't go to the mall. Hardly ever. I would rather spend money on experiences than clothes which helps me not feel depraved. I do a lot of online ordering with free shipping and return if the fit's not right. I'll hit TJ Maxx if I need jeans...goodness knows you've got to try a million of those on to find good ones.
#6 Luke and I cook together for date nights when we are in the mood once the kids are in bed. It's delightful and much cheaper.
#7 We pay nothing for TV or internet currently. We watch free shows online or on occasion grab a Red Box movie. But I can count on my hand how many times I've been to the theater to watch a movie I just had to see on the big screen. Our neighbor gave us the passcode for their cable internet since it was faster than our current connection as a nice gesture. We swap favors since I meet their son off the bus every now and then if his mom's not home yet. Trading baby sitting or other favors with a neighbor or friend will save a bundle longterm in my own experience at least. :)
updated again Jan 10th 2015
#8 Now that Luke is on a better paying salary, most people assume we will move into a bigger house. Our current home is nice and cozy for eight people, but we are by no means cramped. We plan to wait it out as long as possible in our moderate sized home with four bedrooms so we can pay off all of his med school loans in good time. Our goal is to have them paid off 6-7 years post residency.
#9 I'm sort of a health foodie person but not 100%. Figure out what food are important for you to buy organic and which ones aren't. For example, I like to buy organic potatoes and apples because I feel like they taste better. The best place I've found for these items is trader Joe's grocery. There may not be one close to you, but that not the point, get into a routine of where you get certain things and stick to it. Limit impulsive buys or trendy purchases like stocking up on gallons of Agave syrup only to decide a few months later it's not healthy (or not healthier than just getting corn syrup :). Find your regulars...find your rhythm and when you make a big pot of soup freeze half of it for later. :)
#10 Limit buying pre made frozen good like lasagna. It's way more expensive in the long run and doesn't hit the spot to boot. Just make a bunch and freeze it for later use yourself if possible.
#11 You don't have to good a meat for every meal to make it complete. We eat a lot of noodles with added protein and it's much cheaper than a meat every night.
#12 We buy limited dry clean items if possible.
#13 I buy darker colored shirts for my boys to reduce stains. I like grey and slate tones anyway so it's not like I'm settling for something I don't like. Otherwise you'll be tossing out clothes that are ruined more often.
#14 Buying high quality shoes usually pays off if they are dress shoes. We pass them down to the next kiddo and save a bundle in the long run.
Posted by L, Ann and boys at 1:52 PM