There is some debate over what "Frugal" is and isn't. I guess it's a personal choice. Some are disappointed in the number of "saving money" posts under Frugal, some are tired of the same old same old.
I view my money saving strategies as a way of being frugal with my families money. There is only so much of it, and it has to go a long way!
There are some things I do that are Frugal, Green and not cheap - CF bulbs for one! There is nothing cheap about them!
Then there are things that are cheap and not Green, probably not Frugal either - I use my dryer! It's cheap because we have subsidized electricity, I still hang a few things out when I can. Sheets are just better dried outside. But with my new energy star washer the clothes are usually barely damp when they come out so the dryer isn't working as hard or as long. I know it would be free to just hang them outside, but what is my time worth? And I don't have enough line to house my 2 loads a day!
We compost which is all of the above, at least when something goes bad before it's eaten it has a purpose, it doesn't just get tossed. We garden, which isn't very cheap at all! Well, the tomatoes that self seeded were freebies, so that helped! I am going to try saving seeds this year & maybe we won't spend so much on them next year!
Coupons - Well they aren't free, even the printables aren't! You use ink & paper, you have to buy the newspaper to get them. Unless you have someone give them to you, like I do, but then I still buy the papers so I have multiples. So I have to use them, and save more than the cost of the papers to make it worth my while. I spend $3 a week. This week I used quiet a few so the papers were more than covered! But I don't every week and they are time consuming, and you have to keep them organized, plus all that time spent planning and surfing the flyers.
I think that the biggest challenge with being Frugal is that it is not "normal," we have been fighting all summer with the kids about why we turned the TV off. While I was at work this week my hubby caved. He lowered our package, but it's still on. I can't say I'm happy. I thought we had decided not to bother, mostly because the package we have doesn't include a lot of the channels we watch regularly (Discovery Home, DIY, Encore) and to get them we'd have to double our monthly expense. So not worth it to me! But it's on & they had better like it, cuz Momma ain't happy!
Some other Frugal articles -
Ramblings of a Penny Pincher
Making a Difference while still being frugal.