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What are some of your frugal tips?

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I am 51 years old and in debt. I did not want to work full time because of health problems and wanting to enjoy life. (I spent 21 years raising a disabled child who is now in a group home)
To reduce my debt I moved into an older travel trailer which I bought for 3,000. I am living at a campground
and pay a monthly rate of  $265. 00. That includes rent, water, utilities and satellite.
Although to many what I am doing sounds extreme, it has allowed me to pay my debts off faster. My goal ois to become debt free and buy a motorhome to travel around the country.
For income I do home Health and ebay...

Cook 2 or 3 meals at once (depending on oven size).  For instance last night  made barbecue pork and chicken.  Be careful to put food that takes longer in first.  Last week I made a stuffed chicken (make soup and sandwiches from leftovers) and lasagna (freeze extras for another meal).  You could cook a roast and used left overs for sandwiches and soup.

After cooking the main meal I use leftovers to make casseroles and other meal thoughout the week.  

When I make meals, I make two batches on occasion and freeze one.  When I make cookies, I always make two batches and flash freeze one batch. Then when the oven is on for something else, I can take out a dozen cookies and bake them along with dinner.

I use half of what is recommended for shampoo. I stopped using makeup other than mascara.  I don't use hair products other than a little hair spray.  Don't color my hair anymore. I've earned the gray ones.

We wear our jeans and slacks twice before washing. DH wears his work T's twice also.  Also use our towels for a week before washing them.  We have a separate small miracle towel for our hair.

We got married and had a sit down dinner and drinks for 70 people and did the whole thing for under $2200.00. I had a suit that I bought on clearance for $15.00, I made the bouquets and bouts. I had a wreath bouquet and it is now on our door.  DH and BM wore suits they had.  We hosted the rehearsal dinner and a wedding day breakfast for 15 people in that price also.

I use hot water and tea tree oil in a spray bottle to clean surfaces.  I don't make my own laundry detergent because it just isn't worth it. Too much hassle when I can buy 200oz for $2.00 on sale.  I make my own bath salts and salt scrubs.

I only use coupons on products that I normally buy. Just because it is a 'new' product or a buy one get one offer, doesn't mean it is a good deal.  I rebate on things I use only, not just because it will only cost me $.37 in the end.  Already have too much clutter.

I don't give a Christmas or birthday gift just because someone gave me one. I don't do the secret spook or secret santa thing at work.  I don't feel guilt for saying no to all of the items coworkers sell for their kids at work.  Most of that is not a good deal.

I get my calendars free at church, the bank, etc.  I buy my stamps through the mail. Not a frugal step but a time saving one.  

We do not have long distance on our phone but have a phone card for .03/minute.

I am sure there are more things...


Quit going out to eat
The more prepared your food is the more it costs.  Quit buying frozen and convience meals.
Hang your laundry out to dry. They will even dry in the winter. Our Grandmothers and great grandmothers did it.

I have two tips.
First a fantastic recipe for window cleaner.
In a non-reactive bowl, combine 1/2c. Rubbing Alchohol. 1/2c Amonia,(non-sudsing)
1/2c Water. Pour into an old Windex or other spray bottle. If you care to, add a drop of blue food color.
Spray on windows , mirrors, glass table tops, and wipe off with newspaper, Things shine like you wouldn't believe! If you don't want the ink on your hands, wear rubber gloves.

Always weigh bagged produce. Recently a local supermarket had appled on sale 3# bags for 99 cents.
I gathered up 4 bags, went to the scale & weighed them.
Three bags held 3.25#, the other, 3.5#, so I got 1.25# free, and free is VERY good.
Blessings, GrammaJ


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