When being frugal isn’t easy…

"Hot Diggity Dog! .25 off a 48 pack of Toilet Paper!" Courtesy : thegraphicsfairy.com
“Hot Diggity Dog! .25 off a 48 pack of Toilet Paper!” Courtesy : thegraphicsfairy.com

Being Frugal ain’t easy sometimes, kids. I won’t lie.

It’s not always carts of free groceries, double coupons, and mail boxes fulla rebate checks.

Sometimes it’s getting stuck with a cart full of free food that’s yucky (once I bought a bunch of dinner kits that were free after coupon, but they tasted like what I imagine dog food resembles), a newspaper full of .35 off a huge package of already very expensive toilet paper, and an empty mail box (or a mailbox full of bills-Even Worse!).

These are all experiences that every couponer and frugal person goes through.

How do I keep my head up during the hard times were it seems like no matter how I try, money is just pouring out of my hands, and I can’t get a handle on it?

  1. This too shall pass! It’s hard to believe, but everyone goes through it. Even frugal folks like me!
  2. Count your blessings. And while you’re at it, inventory your pantry, fridge, and other stockpiles. Know what you’ve got on hand, and find ways to use up what you’ve got- That will help you get spending under control.
  3. Make a plan. How can you: Repair, upcycle, use up or do without? Don’t forget local community resources like freecycle, Craigslist free section, and your local branch of the Buy Nothing Project to help you find what you need.
  4. Forget about the Joneses.  Everyone wants what’s new, bigger, better, faster. Get out of that mindset. Forget about what your friends and neighbors have, and focus on what matters. Family, friends, and being a good person (seriously!). If you ever find yourself thinking “What kind of dining set defines me as a person?” maybe it’s time to re-assess priorities.
  5. Don’t spend money. For some people, shopping is catharsis. Buying new things makes you feel new, but at the end of the day, how did all this stuff get paid for? If you gotta get out and shop, check out a local thrift store. Support a charity and save some money.

How do you keep your head above water when living the frugal life gets hard?

 

Delectable Tuesday: Quinoa tri-color pepper salad

This is a super yummy salad that is easy to prepare and can be kept in the fridge for up to a week. I used green red and orange peppers but feel free to use whatever color bell peppers you can find in your local supermarket.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup quinoa ( I used red quinoa)
  • 2 cups water or broth, your choice
  • 3 bell peppers, cleaned and diced
  • 1/4 cup oil, your choice (I used corn oil)
  • 1/4 cup vinegar, you choice (I used pomegranate, but balsamic would be good too)
  • 1/4 cup stone ground mustard
  • Pepper and salt to taste
  • (optional 1/4 c. feta or goat cheese crumbled)

Directions:

  1. Cook quinoa in water or broth as indicated on package directions.
  2. Once quinoa is cooked refrigerate until cool.
  3. In a large bowl mix cooked chilled quinoa and bell peppers set aside.
  4. In a small bowl mix oil, vinegar, and mustard until combined.
  5. Pour over quinoa mixture and stir to combine. Taste and salt and pepper as needed.
  6. Store in refrigerator for at least four hours prior to serving.

Delicious as a side dish or top a green salad with this mixture to make a large entree salad.

Because of this salad is a vegan (sans cheese, of course), vegetarian, and gluten free it is a great option for a potluck with friends or family.

This recipe makes six side dish servings or three main dish servings