The first strategy for frugal living I'd like to explore is: Reduce Waste.
Waste can be defined as anything that is unwanted or unusable. One way to reduce my waste is to make it wanted or usable then it is no longer waste. Another is to find items that take the place of a waste product.
Here's my brainstormed list of things I have done or would like to do at my house.
- Buy in Bulk - Less packaging means less to throw away. It also means that companies will charge less for bulk-type items because there is less cost in producing/packaging them. (Not always though make sure you do the math.)
- Composting - I really want to try this. Not only will I be changing those unusable apple cores and potato peelings into something usable I will be getting a ton of free mulch for my garden and yard. Now I need to figure out how to make it work in my small yard.
- Reusable Grocery Bags - Did you know Smith's, Target and many other stores will give you money if you bring and use your own bags. True it's only $.05 per bag, but that really adds up after time. Plus, the reusable bags are so much bigger and nicer to use than those puny plastic ones.
- Recycling - Whenever I have an empty ink cartridge I turn it in to Staples and they give me a $3 credit at their store. Not bad. I know there are other items I could collect and turn in for cash. I just need to find them. Or, I know many of the local elementary schools collect tons of things to turn into cash for their own use.
- Reusable Packaging - Along the same lines as the grocery bags. After going through almost half a box of sandwich size Ziploc bags just since school started. I know I need to begin looking for some small plastic containers we can use and wash over and over again.
- Reusing - I need to do better about evaluating boxes and containers I'm about to throw away to see if I can use them somewhere else. Hey! I could make these boxes for my kid's lunch bags instead of buying new tupperware type boxes.
- Mending Clothes - I've done a small amount of this, but I know I can do a better job in making our clothes last longer. Check out these super cute mended jeans from Make it Do. Don't be surprised if you see my girls running around in similar pants sometime soon. Those kids put holes in their jeans in record time!
What other frugal things would fit in this category?