My Motto: Save Where You Can So You Can Spend Where You Want

photo © 2011 Steven Depolo | more info (via: Wylio)

This is an old post I wrote when my blog was still pretty new. In fact, my blog was only 5 days old when I wrote this post!

I wanted to revive it (and add to it!) because it’s still so true (although I do splurge on haircuts nowadays 😉 ) and it’s kind of my motto! I think we all should save wherever we can so we can spend where we want!

So much of our budgets are uncompromisable. We need a roof over our heads, we need food in our tummies and clothes on our backs. While we can cut costs in these places, they are expenses that we cannot get rid of entirely. We need insurance for our homes, our cars, our health, our lives.

So many needs can leave very little room for wants.

The most boring expenses are typically the most essential.

Even though I know this, it still can feel like a burden when it’s August and I have a $300 electricity bill. We live in Texas, we have 2 small children. Electricity (Okay, air conditioning) is something we can’t compromise on. We can haggle a better rate, we can keep lights off and fans running, but at the end of the day…that bill is not going away.

This is why I work so hard to find ways to save money. I am human and I have wants. The less I spend on our needs (without compromising my family’s health, safety or comfort) the more we can spend on the fun.

And we do!

I am never going to claim that we live on a beans and rice budget. We don’t. You will never see me take my grocery budget down to $25 a week. That’s produce for us and nothing else. It won’t happen. But I will cut from where I can and get the most out of my dollar.

I am never going to claim that we don’t watch TV (we actually have a VERY expensive cable package) or that we don’t go to the movies or out to eat. We absolutely do. I try and find a coupon and we definitely try to find ways to make things cheaper, but we enjoy it so we do it.

I am never going to claim that I have things all figured out and I have six figures in my bank account. I don’t. Not even close. We’re young, we’re new to this saving money thing.  While one day that is my goal, there is so much I personally am not willing to sacrifice to get there. We made a lot of mistakes when we were younger and we’re not financial gurus by any means.

I am never going to claim that I don’t like shiny new gadgets or fun toys for my kids, or buying good expensive food. My house looks like toys r us, and I am not the least bit ashamed of that.

We truly save where we can, so we can spend on the things we want.

Life is about choices, priorities and enjoyment. Where I cut fat from my budget might not be an option for you ( I rarely buy clothes for myself, cut my hair, get pedicures or pamper myself), but we can all stand to evaluate things. There is money to be saved out there if you look hard enough. Why wouldn’t you want to stretch your hard earned dollar? I think everyone should make an effort to make more out of their money. No matter how much you have. Some of the richest people on the planet are also the thriftiest!

I hope this blog can serve to make people feel good about every little bit that they do. Not make you feel overwhelmed by all you are not doing. I sew clothes, if you have no desire to do that, don’t! And don’t feel bad about it for one single second. My goal is to offer money savings ideas that are easy to implement or at least serve as inspiration. You can do as much or as little as you want.

If you take one tip from my blog and use it, and save your family $20 a month, I have done what I have set out to do. Now take that $20 and spend it on something fun. That might mean you go out on a date with your significant other, or it might mean you stick it in savings. Whatever floats your boat.

No matter who you are or what your income is, strive to save wherever you can and watch your discretionary income and savings grow. And who wouldn’t want that!

10 Ways to save on essentials so you can save more money and spend your money where YOU want to spend it!

  1. Use coupons strategically (learn more by reading my series Strategic Shopping)
  2. Negotiate lower rates on your monthly bills
  3. Make money online
  4. Earn cash back for purchases you make online
  5. Cook from scratch at home
  6. Become a DIY-er and learn to do things on your own without out sourcing
  7. Live within your means and forget about what the Jones’s are doing
  8. Take advantage of freebies, special offers and low stock up prices whenever you can
  9. Save your money! If you have money in the bank you are more likely able to plan for life’s hiccups.
  10. Follow Family Friendly Frugality 😉

Every little bit helps. Small trickles make for a big stream. You don’t have to save $1000 today, but if you save $1 every day for the next year…that’s $365 back in YOUR pocket.

What has saving where you can so you can spend where you want done for you lately? 😉

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Heather is the creator and owner of Family Friendly Frugality. She calls Texas home and is married to her best friend. With 2 children 22 months apart, she has her hands full. So full that she decided to start blogging as a hobby. That hobby blew up into a full time job. Now she's got the husband, the kids and the blog. We're not exactly sure what she was thinking, but she's too busy for us to ask. Find Me On Google +

8 thoughts on “My Motto: Save Where You Can So You Can Spend Where You Want”

  1. This is a message I have been trying to drill into my 13 YO’s head lately.
    I don’t know what’s gotten into her, but she’s suddenly oblivious to even the simplest money-saving tactics. Particularly frustrating for me, as this is how I (we!) have always lived. She can’t seem to “get it” that a couple crummy meals at a fast food place add up to one nice dinner at Red Lobster (which she loves).
    I’m hoping this is just a phase–or I’ll feel like a total failure in my financial parenting skills!

    1. I hope it’s just a phase! I bet it is. I remember being 13 and really the only thing I really cared about was me me me, LOL.

      I don’t think that’s a reflection of parenting, maybe just a reflection of adolescence?

      Okay, come back here in about 9 years and remind me of what I just said 😉

  2. Love this message! It is so nice to read a blog like this where I don’t end up feeling guilty for buying the brand that isn’t on sale occasionally or for not having that $20 grocery bill… but I’ve been reading this blog for about 3 weeks now and our grocery bill is down by about 1/3 because I’ve started paying attention to this stuff… and a lot of the guidance is coming from your blog, so thank you!

  3. I am planning on calling my phone/internet/sattelite provider and asking for a lower rate. Do you have any tips to do this? I will be losing my job at the end of September and if I can’t get a lower rate we will go down to the basics.

    1. Do your research. Know what their competition is doing including any sales/specials. Make sure you are armed with that knowledge before you call. Be willing to walk away and change providers if they won’t meet your demands. Good luck! Sorry about your job 🙁

  4. wow, thanks for the advice. i always find myself spending more every month that when there is a little change i don’t save but use it as well and i end up telling myself that i will save when i have more money next month. so from now on, save save save. no matter how little money i have.

  5. wow, thanks for the advice. i always find myself spending more every month that when there is a little change i don’t save but use it as well and i end up telling myself that i will save when i have more money next month. so from now on, save save save. no matter how little money i have.

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