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Being a Stay-at-Home-Mom has always been my dream. I wanted to have cute babies, teach them to be sweet kids, volunteer in their classrooms, and just be SUPERMOM! Thankfully, I met a sweet man who had the same thing in mind when looking for a wife! The only hiccup was that he’s a teacher! Doesn’t exactly scream, “Cha-Ching!” One family, one income. It’s not too common these days, but we are making it work. Now, my job is being home with our little one and making the money he brings in be enough! Sometimes, I’ll admit, it’s tight, but I’m doing it! Here are a few ways I save money, so I can keep being a Stay-at-Home-Mom!
- I shop the sales. My goal is to ONLY buy things when they are sale. I get so excited when I get the monthly Costco ad in the mail and weekly Target ad sent to my email! The key to shopping the sales is to still only purchase products you need. For example, when Target has their “Spend $20 on Personal Care Items and Receive a $5 Gift Card,” all I buy are products we use. Then I spend the $5 gift card on other necessities. It’s so tempting to go a little crazy and get some fun stuff (and sometimes I do!), but I really try to stock up things we need when they are on sale. It’s quite satisfying to open our bathroom cupboard, see my plethora of spare toiletries, and know I got them all for a really good price!
- I use coupons. No, I’m not a crazy coupon lady. I don’t have a basement full of 300 bottles of laundry detergent because they were a good deal. 🙂 But, if I can easily get a coupon for something I could use, you bet I’m going to use it! I look at the ads in my parents’ Sunday newspaper and cut some coupons for products THAT I USE. I quick look through the Tuesday ads that come in the mail, praying for a Cold Stone coupon. I go to Target’s website and print out deals. For just a few minutes of effort, I can often get pretty good deals!
- I don’t have cable. We just have Netflix, Hulu Plus, and Amazon Instant Video (comes free with an Amazon Prime account). We had cable when we were first married. I couldn’t believe how much we were spending to channel surf through all our stations and still find nothing to watch. With these 3 streaming services, we have plenty to watch (and binge watch during Sunday nap time).
- I don’t have a landline. We also had a landline when we were first married. Literally, for 6 months, we got 2 calls from family who meant to call us, and a billion telemarketer calls at dinner time. It’s 2017. Personal cell phones are where it’s at!
- I meal plan and grocery shopping once a month. I can’t tell you enough how much I love this. Having a plan helps you stay away from spending extra on take out or fast food. You can read my whole post on how I do it here!
- I go crazy on my birthday. It’s amazing how many places will give you a good deal on your birthday! Red Robin, Farmer Boys, Starbucks, DSW, Kohls, Black Bear Diner…all give you a good discount or even FREE stuff on your birthday. Farmer Boys even gave me a free ice cream for my half birthday!
- I highlight my own hair. This is not for everyone. I get it. You’re not allowed to get mad at me if you try this and it’s a disaster. There’s my disclaimer. 🙂 I’ve been doing this since high school and it works pretty well for me! No, I do not get $70+ salon quality results, but who cares?! I highlight my hair for $10 and it looks pretty darn good! This is what I use (and is the best price I’ve found).
- I don’t use a credit card if it doesn’t have a rewards program. You still need to stick to your budget, but why not get something back?! When my husband and I got married, we got a travel rewards credit card together. We recently celebrated our 5 year anniversary and finally spent our reward points. They covered half of our trip to Hawaii! Find a card that works for you-whether you want travel credits, cash back…whatever!