Monday, March 15, 2010

Pinching pennies...

When Scott and I joined our bank accounts and started to talk about the financial part of our relationship, he let me be in charge of the checkbook.  I am anal about saving and keeping track of finances and he was trusting enough in my skills.  I've always felt blessed by this.  When we made the move to Nashville, it was a pure leap of faith for many reasons.  One of the most significant was that we were decreasing our household income by me staying home with the girls.  So I had to become tighter on the budget than ever. 

I have learned a lot about couponing and finding sales and stretching a dollar through this entire process.  But I admit it - I am cheap.  When our January electric bill came back to be $275, I almost croaked.  So I turned the house thermostat down low and put space heaters in all the rooms and only turned them on (to 65!) when we were actually using the room.  There is no colder feeling than to step out of the shower when your bathroom thermostat reads 59!!  And then to come out and see your husband on the couch...
I realized I was probably being a little ridiculous then and turned everything up a couple degrees.  Now this was all before the baby came, so please don't think I'm freezing out a newborn for the sake of saving a couple bucks.  Although I will say that we saved over $100 on February's electric bill by putting an extra blanket on the bed.

This being said, I have come to the conclusion that some things are worth paying full price for, even if I don't have a coupon or it isn't on sale...which is saying a lot for me.

1.    Name brand garbage bags with the odor blocker.  I bought generics the last time and they stink to high heaven.  Luckily, we average filling up about a bag a day right now, so they're not in there that long.  But still, they stink.  Never again.

2.     Dreft for a new baby.  There is just something about that smell of new baby clothes washed in Dreft.  We were given a bottle with Elizabeth (thanks Tammy!) and bought a bottle for Rachel.  After it's gone, her stuff will get tackled by All like the rest of ours.  But until then, she will smell like a baby.

3.     Speaking of smelling like a baby, Johnson's baby lotion.  I will not buy generic.  As long as my kids will let me slather them with the pink lotion, I will.  

4.     Crackers.  I don't know what's the difference between Ritz and the store brand, but they taste completely different.  Normally, I do have a coupon for these, but if I don't, I'll suck it up and buy the Ritz.  Same with goldfish...uh-na-na's, as my daughter calls them.

5.      Razors for my husband.  I can normally find a deal, but I made the mistake of buying him the cheapies one time and he got cut up with them. 

Keep adding to my list!  What will you not scrimp on?


  1. I will not buy "off" brand cheese, graham crackers, or papertowels. The papertowels always have to be Bounty select-a-size. hehe

  2. I completely agree with the odor blocking trash bags. Even though I don't change them as often as you do, my kitchen has never smelled better than since I got them. Almost! I am always hunting for a good and cheap frozen pizza and I finally found it! It doesn't look like much but Tony's Pizza in the frozen food isle is the best. Even when I have coupons for other ones, I always hesitate because yes, I have a $1 coupon for that Kroger Pizza but for only $2.50 (total before tax) I know what I'm getting and it's yummy! Ps! I don't know if the Tony bowling alley's are still in exsistance but they have a coupon on the back for a free game (always). Gotta love cheap but still great and even comes with it's own coupon!

  3. I agree with the trash bags...Gary will not let me substitue anything for Doritos...even when they are so expensive....he said he may not have much but he works all day and he is going to have Doritos

  4. ha! Tonya, I totally forgot about graham crackers. Agreed! And I don't think I've ever even tried off brand Doritos, Tammy...we've always bought the real thing too. Although I can't tell a difference in regular potato chips.