One year later…

I remember starting my blog last year on March 3 – my daughter’s birthday. At the time, I was six weeks into a surprise layoff and super stressed about being a single unemployed mom.

Not spending money became a game. How many days could I go without spending a thin dime?

Sometime in April I landed a writing gig (whew!) and money began to trickle into my accounts only again. However after months of not spending, I kept my belt tight so that my money muffin top (aka my emergency fund) could spill over my belt quite nicely.

One year later I still…

  • Avoid shopping
  • Take my lunch to work
  • Repair things
  • Make do with what I have
  • Don’t hire things out 
  • Cook meals from scratch
  • Eat mostly vegetarian 
  • Buy used clothes
  • Eat whole foods
  • Use the library
  • Rarely eat out
  • Compost
  • Don’t have cable or broadcast TV
  • Buy nothing on credit
  • Air dry my clothes
  • Avoid disposable products

Some of these things I do to save money and some I do to save resources. None of these things feel like a sacrafice to me. Instead, they just feel like my life.

How about you?

What do you do to save money or resources? 


  1. Love this post :). Especially the bit where you say it’s not a sacrifice – this way of life is so doable, and is not about sacrifice, more about not living to excess.

    Well done on your anniversary.

  2. All these things are basic good sense, and it is such a shame that most people dont just do them automatically. I grew up that way and returned to it when I became the sole wage earner in my family, but We’d be a lot richer if I had done things that way all along. I applaud you for arriving here and only hope enough people can convert in time to save this planet.

  3. You’re an inspiration! Congratulations on your one year blog anniversary. Keep sharing and inspiring us!

  4. Happy blog anniversary! :)

    I do many of the things you listed above. I also ask myself before buying: Do I need or want it? Can I make do with something I already have? Where will I put it? How was it made/who made it?

    Those questions halt me in my tracks more often than not.

  5. I also do a lot of the same things. I also subscribe to many of the same blogs that you do.

    One thing I don’t do is eat mostly vegetarian. I am interested in it though. Any pointers? Have you always been vegetarian?

  6. I too do some of what you do and I am always trying to do better. I have 4, soon to be 5 grandchildren and I want them to have a livable world to live and grow old in and to also learn from early on how to live and act in a responsible manner. The best way to teach them, I feel, is to act in the ways that I talk about and that will, hopefully, lead to the kind of world that is worth living in.

    My 4 year old grandson will already remind me if I forget and do something wrong. We are still working on wanting everything he sees.

  7. Jean,

    It’s great that you’re teaching your kids about frugality and making green choices.

    I remember when my kids went through the want everything they touch phase – mine. Thankfully, they are over that phase.

  8. Hi Kate! I’ve been meaning to make a comment ever since I first read this a few days ago- congrats and I totally agree that incorporating these things into our lifestyle is not a sacrifice. I’m happier, and feel more self-sufficient!

    And thanks for the shout out about the meatless recipes- same for us, little by little, more veggies equals less meat. Without even trying to be “vegetarian,” which we’re not.

  9. Hi Kate! I really liked your post and your positive attitude. And congratulations on your anniversary!

    I do a lot of the same things that you do, including repairing things (often with interesting learning experiences along the way!). Not so good at eating vegetarian but I cook almost everything from scratch.

    My biggest money saver has been on the grocery shopping side of things. I now check the sale circulars, plan menus around the sale items at my favorite stores, then make a list and go shopping. The menu plan builds in planned leftovers for busier nights during the week when I get home late, and also things to include in my sons’ school lunches. I also use Costco judiciously and our local Trader Joe’s for great $5 bottles of wine! I’ve brought my grocery shopping budget down by about a third by doing this.

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