What do you do at home to save Chuckie Cheese money?Posted: July 8, 2012
For some reason, planting season inspires me to more self-sufficiency. Once I get my hands covered in dirt, I start to feel like I could do this for real, like I could actually feed my family with my little plot of land, and put up all I need for the long cold winter as well. In reality, I know I can’t, my life has lots of things that interfere with complete sustainability. But I love the thought, and even now that I am working I still make the time to do some things at home that take a little time, but save money.
If you are wondering about the title of my post, when my kids were little, we rarely went to Chuck E. Cheese Restaurant, so we always told them that we chose to do (insert way to save money) to go out for pizza – “Shut the door, you’re letting out the Chuck E. Cheese money!”
I will do a little write up about freezing and canning in a later post, but today I am going to list a few things that I do at home that make me feel a little more self-sufficient. Maybe you could share some of your own tips that I could adopt, too!
1. Kitchen towels! I rarely use paper towels. I own lots of kitchen towels and use them to clean and wipe up. I can’t say I never buy paper towels, but it is such a rare thing – mostly for the rare times we are feeding lots of people, and they are needed for messy food. And when I need more kitchen towels, more are easily made from old bath towels (any extra old towels that don’t become kitchen towels can also go to the animal shelter).
2. Cloth napkins. Yes! I have known for years the cost savings of cloth napkins, but it wasn’t until last year when I received a new sewing machine that I gave it a try. I love using cloth napkins! They are so pretty, and using them really does save a lot of money. If you are curious how much, let me know in the comments and I’ll give you the example I refer to.
3. Reusing glass jars. The photo shows how I used one to create a cute soap dispenser in my bathroom. I still love it! And I also use glass jars instead of using Ziploc or Tupperware. Of course I have plastic ware. It travels great! But my awesome sister-in-law showed me the trick of reusing old pickle jars (& such) not only for things like draining oil, but for saving leftovers. Sounds simple, and it is, but how many people do this? Another thing I use those old jars for is gifts – I Mod-Podge pretty paper around the center of a cleaned jar, and fill it with candy or cookies. Makes a cute gift! And if it is for an office colleague, a decorative jar full of candy can sit prettily on their desk. If you plan ahead, you can even it match it to their decor.
4. Composting – this is so easy and it not only makes my veggie garden grow SUPER lush, it also gives me soil for potting flowers. There are a lot of resources for this on the web. Keep a jar by the sink and when you are cleaning up from dinner prep, scrape the composting materials into the jar. Every day or so, dump the jar into an area you have designated as your composting area in the yard. This does NOT have a be a large area. If you search online, you can find ideas about how to make a compost bin out of a garbage can. Simple! Just note – don’t put any meat scraps or pet droppings into your compost pile! Do a google search for what can and what cannot be composted.
Okay, I think I’ve touched on enough for now. If you have some examples for me of some other tips for self-sufficiency, let me know either here or on twitter or FB. I’d love to hear them!