How To Save Like Your Mother

September 21, 2017

Just a heads up in case any of you have totally blanked out-This Sunday is Mother’s Day. So… yeah. You’ve got a two day heads up. Anndddd you’re welcome.

Now, don’t you dare go rushing to your nearest store to buy the latest and greatest trinket for the special lady in your life. [Random thought: What is it with women and trinkets?! I mean, I get the whole- decorate your house and create a safe space- deal, but really, who needs a collection of angels or Precious Moment figurines? If you have any insight into this phenomenon, please share with us as the CCC is thoroughly perplexed.]

Instead, consider a USEFUL gift. We are giving homemade dishwashing detergent this year as a mother’s day gift. It is a useful and cute gift when put in a mason jar with ribbon and a name tag. Consider making your own cards for Mother’s Day. When I am a mother YEARS from now, I will require that all cards and gifts are either homemade or thrifted, and they MUST BE useful.

Observing the women in my life, I have to be grateful for the solid line of thrifty ladies that I come from. My two grandma’s and my mother could all impress you with the different ways they could spend a penny- and generally they chose to save it. Just for some fun I will tell a fun and thrifty mini story on each of them.

Mama: My Mama LOVES the Walgreen’s ads. Just check under her counter and you’ll see tons of makeup, hair, and hygiene products that she got for free using rebates and coupons.

Maternal Grandma: I remember going to a theme park (one of the few ones that has decent food, but of course for an outrageous price) with her and my Granddad. We walked past all the food stalls and restaurants with tasty fried food and headed straight toward the…hotdog stand. She had scouted out the cheapest lunch choice available, and I had no choice in the matter.

Paternal Grandma: When my brother and I were little, she would give us “water bottles” that were really empty and washed mustard and ketchup bottles filled with water. You better believe we got some strange looks. It looked like we were drinking straight condiments!

So, in honor of these thrifty ladies, I will let you in on a few tips I learned from them over the years.

HOW TO SAVE LIKE YOUR MOTHER:

  1. Don’t ever buy Lunchables for your kids (or for yourself…duh).- For the price of 1 Lunchable you could eat lunch for 2 days.
  2. If you don’t have a coupon, then don’t go out to eat.– Mom can make something tastier at home for half the cost. Healthier too!
  3. Don’t forget to sign up for free birthday offers and Kids Eat Free nights at your local restaurants.- My most vivid memory is getting the children’s meal at Bob Evans for free for my birthday, and still being hungry when we left. (Don’t worry. Mama fed me a snack at home.)
  4. Pizza night is for making pizza, not ordering it from Dominos.- My mom used to let us make stuffed crust and we would try to make funny faces with pepperoni and cheese. Memories and pizza for half the price of delivery.
  5. The clearance rack is your friend.- My mom never pay full price for a shirt on one rack, when the next rack over is marked 75% off!
  6. Getting hand-me-downs is just as fun as shopping.- I remember my mom bringing home bags of hand-me-downs from my next door neighbor who was a few years older than me. It was always the highlight of my  day month.
  7. Watching home videos is way more fun that going to the movies.– My brother and I used to beg my mom to watch funny home videos. We were (ok still are) obsessed with seeing a miniature version of ourselves.
  8. If you have stockings at Christmas or baskets at Easter, fill them with dollar store items.- There are treasures to be found at the Dollar store! My best memory is getting a dollar store squirt gun for Easter  from Maternal Grandma and having a water fight with all my cousins after lunch.
  9. Carpooling is awesome.- Save time and money by agreeing to carpool with a few neighbors. My mom and her 2 friends had a pretty sweet gig going. Plus, your kids love the extra time with their friends!
  10. Utilize the library and other free activities in your area.- My mom used to take us to the library and let us read and play educational computer games for hours. The library has tons of fun stuff to do with kids, and your town should have a lot of free programs and events for families.

Now, go give your Mama a great big hug and tell her how much she means to you. To be loved and appreciated is what all moms want anyway.

Do you have a frugal mom? What are some ways you learned to save like your mother?

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31 Comments on "How To Save Like Your Mother"

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Mark Adam Douglass (Minimalist Couple)
Mark Adam Douglass (Minimalist Couple)

Sadly, I came from an anti-thrifty family, barely living within their means, so it took me a long time to dig myself out of those habits.

Thanks for sharing those great tips!

Vanessa
Vanessa

Haha! Well, my grandma is like no other. She is a sweet lady that really knows how to reuse most things!

Anne @ Unique Gifter
Anne @ Unique Gifter

Lots of fun things in here. I love the ketchup water bottles though, I have never heard that one before!!

Kim@NewlyWoodwards

Can you check your spam comments? I think my comment may have been caught there. =)

Kim@NewlyWoodwards

These are such awesome tips! We’re still working to be more frugal (okay, I’m still working – hubby is already there and actually sent me the link to this site), but we’ve had good luck with lots of these tips, too. Especially the food – why go out for pizza or anything when it’s better at home? 😉

Also, I’m waiting for the day that my little guy is big enough to enjoy the library. Someday, he’ll stop EATING books and want to READ them, right?

Really enjoying your blog.

Anastacia Maness
Anastacia Maness

What a beautiful picture of you and your mom! I love finding a great deal on clearance racks. My 5 year old needed pants. He had outgrown all his others and no hand-me-downs were given us. I took him to the store and found a discount rack exactly the size he needed. I bought him 3 pair for $2 each. Sometimes I’ll go to a resale shop and get special deals that way too. That’s my favorite way to buy my younger kids shoes.

Sharon
Sharon

Number 5 & 10 are my favorites. I love the clearance rack and I never go below 75% off. Not only do I save but I only have to look at so many clothes. The library is a must for our free movie renting and new books that have come out.

cj
cj

Jolly frugal and smart ladies. May we all learn from their excellent spending habits!!! Many from previous generations understand the value of frugality and they had some obvious and good reasons. Your site helps create the urgency for responsible spending that is so badly needed today.

Tammy R
Tammy R
I love how you include what your mom and both grandmother’s did. I would have fought for the mustard bottle. What a great idea! My maternal grandmother reused almost everything. I remember a pile of foil on the kitchen counter. I think she bought one roll in her whole life. She also used the first sheet of toilet paper to blot her lipstick, so I remember wondering, “How pretty! Should I really use that to….?” She didn’t want to waste one square! It really helps me to think of what she did to save a penny. Thank you for the… Read more »
Pauline
Pauline

lol about the ketchup bottles. Sounds like something my grandmother could have done too, raising 7 kids just after WWII she had to be resourceful. And we bring picnics to attraction parks 🙂

Meghan
Meghan

I’m gonna go ahead and advise that we not save like MY mother. 😉

Glen @ Monster Piggy Bank
Glen @ Monster Piggy Bank

I used to agree that carpooling was awesome, but since I have started listening to audio books I hate having other people in the car with me 🙁 I know it will save money, but I love that time to myself now.

Shannon @ The Heavy Purse
Shannon @ The Heavy Purse

What a lovely tribute to your Mom and grandmas. They sound like wonderful women. 🙂 My mom was never the saver – that was my dad. He was the planner. You and Jacob will be great parents someday!

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