Saturday, July 6, 2013
Staying Out of Debt for Good: This littlePiggy stayed home...
While the Little Piggy who went to Market used wisdom in purchases, the little piggy that stays home shouldn't be discounted. The majority of savings are generated in the home.
First of all let us take note that the little Piggy who stays home is likely not spending money. Oh you can. In the old days it was easy enough to send off for items from the mail order catalogs. Nowadays it's three times as easy with online shopping. However, for the sake of argument let us say that this is a wise little piggy who knows that even online purchases are shopping and can hurt a budget mightily, so she tends to avoid it except when absolutely necessary. Instead she focuses on how to save money rather than spend it.
It begins with making at home what others might buy: breads, cookies and cakes and meals from scratch. As skills improve with each new success (and the quality of homemade foods is recognized as superior to the store items), the homemaker is encouraged to learn to make new items from scratch. I've always loved to cook, but it wasn't until I had beautiful loaves of bread lined up on my counter (and tasted how very good homemade bread is!) that I began to try to make other things that were less ordinarily homemade, at least in my realm of acquaintances. Like yogurt. Homemade yogurt is so very good, rich, thick and not at all too tart as I often find the plain store brands of yogurt. Salad dressings taste so different from those bottled ones at the store. Experimenting in the kitchen to find the right recipe that works best for your own tastes, equipment and being willing to expand your skill level is a bonus of being at home.
These days with the internet we can learn to do just about anything at all while we're at home. Sewing? Make your own clothes, quilts, soft furnishings for the home, knit, crochet, embroider. Home repairs of equipment. Learn to repair sundry machines including the computer itself which generates a further savings. Learn a marketable skill that allows you to work from home. Make what you don't have with what you do have. That old adage, "Use it up, Wear it Out, Make it do, Go Without' is just the motto that home loving souls live by.
When you're home, you can control your household inventory and nothing goes to waste. I've just completed a food inventory of our pantry and freezers. I know just what we need to use this next month and what we have on hand. I can now better plan meals and better plan stocking up for those days when I'm out marketing, keeping my eye out for sales on those items that must be replaced. I set up my pantry so that items expiring shortly will be used first. I noted which items have been on the inventory list for months because we haven't used them, even though they are well within the 'use by' dates.
I'm often asked, "But what do you do all day?" I'm never without something to do! If I'm not doing something it's because I'm too tired to do more. Generally speaking, I spend my day running my home just as any business runs. There's so much to do that I often wish I could afford help. If I'm not working I'm busy creating for my home, organizing, planning, working with my budget, etc. And when I'm too tired to work more, I usually sit down with my computer and read up on how to make things I'm interested in, like baking Challah or making yogurt. I take seriously what Granny told me long ago: Learn something new every day.
I think Brandy is a prime example of 'staying home'. Click on the link and just go see what all she accomplishes in a week's time. She cooks, gardens, cleans, sews. Her home is clean and beautiful and yet she spends very little money. Most of her time is spent doing. And may I just say this? Never think that reading a bunch of blogs is a waste of time. I have learned more from other bloggers who use their creative thinking cap to stretch their dollars. Manuela, Rhonda, and many others inspire me daily. So does Pinterest. I have learned a great many things, as well as been inspired to create items in my own home that I might have felt needed to be purchased otherwise. It might look like leisure to the uninitiated when I sit down and begin to read blogs, but I'm learning as I go!
This little Piggy Stayed Home...