Daily Shower Cleaner DIY

DSC02774

Hard water stains haunt my home.  I fight them in the bathroom by spraying this concoction all over the shower walls every time I shower.  It works great and it’s easy to make. Best of all, it’s much cheaper than the store bought version! I found the following recipe at pinkyhasabrain.com. I was skeptical, but once I tried it I fell in love. Here ya are, folks:

24 ounces of water
1/2 cup hydrogen peroxide
1/2 cup rubbing alcohol
2 tsp dishwashing liquid (original recipe calls for Dawn. I use whatever I have on hand)
2 tsp automatic dishwasher rinse

Advertisements

School

Someone recently told me that it would cost $50,000 per year to send her twins to college (This number is based on 2013 tuition).  Yikes.  How does one ever save up for that kind of expense? Please tell me, because I am contemplating returning to school. It won’t cost me $50,000, BUT it will take some dough.  I’ve juggled the pros and cons in my head nearly 500 times.  I have not been able to answer the following questions.

1) Will a more advanced degree increase the chances I will be hired in this economy?  I work in health care.  I thought I was set for life with the degrees I already have.  I learned this was not true when I moved to a different state.

2) Will going back decrease the amount I will be able to give my future children for their advanced degrees?  Or will I be able to help them MORE because of the investment I put in my own education.

Blurg.  Such difficult questions!   I’m sorting through my decision day-by-day.

Do you plan on paying for your children’s (or future children’s) advanced education?   Did your parents help you with your degree?


How Is the New Year Treating Your Resolutions?

Yesterday, I noticed the gym was emptier than last week. Some people must have given up on their resolutions already. Wow. It only took 7 days.

I will admit that there are some resolutions I posted on this blog that I’d like to kick to the curb. For example, I decided to save $20 of MY personal spending money every month. There’s a billion things I would love to do with that measly sum of money.

If I had not resolved to save it, I would buy a new shirt or some snazzy organizational bins. I’d sample a few tasty drinks from Starbucks or a bottle of wine. Yet, what would those purchases leave me with at the end of the year? Nothing. So, I’m sticking with my promise to save….even if Target, the Mall and other sneaky businesses do entice me on a daily basis. Next year, I will have an extra $240 in my pocket. I know that is not a lot, but it’s better than nothing!

Sometimes, I need some inspiration to save. I find that reading other money-saving blogs encourage me to quit spending money. Here is a link to a blog I recently found, down$withdebt. Happy reading!


Why I Quit Watching What Not To Wear

I used to love watching “What Not to Wear.”   The bizarre combinations of clothes people chose before their big style transformation entertained and sometimes shocked me.  The hosts of the show, Stacy and Clinton, proved to be amusing.   They were also miracle workers. After 30 minutes of viewing I usually asked myself, “How does the person I saw at the beginning of the show now look like THAT?”

After a while, I started noticing how discontent I felt after tuning into the show.  I yearned for new pointy shoes, coats tailored for every occasion and cute yet sophisticated outfits.  I wanted to shop and buy more.  So, I stopped watching.

I still love new shoes, sweaters and every other type of outfit.  I also enjoy the mall (when it is not crazy-busy with screaming children and haggled mothers running into me), but I’m glad I don’t watch What Not To Wear anymore.  I’m more satisfied with the clothes I already own.  Someday when my future children’s education is paid for and I no longer have to worry about my mortgage…I’ll tune into their program again.

Are there any shows that make you want to spend your entire paycheck?


Here’s To The Little Things That Really Add Up

Over the past few months I’ve learned how much the little things really add up. I used to flippantly spend a lot of money without even knowing it. I continually justified my purchases with “oh..it’s just a few dollars.”  I didn’t realize how much I was spending on piddly items until I started going over the bills with my husband. Here’s a list:

1) Subway-this sneaky restaurant used to eat my paycheck alive. Bag your lunch. Those $5 footlongs will take a serious chunk out of your savings if you eat at this restaurant often.

2) Soda-I’ve harped on this subject a lot. I wish I could get some of the money I spent on this product back…

3) Groceries. I cut my expenses by cooking with more beans and rice. I also reduced the amount of meat I purchase.

4) Cleaning Products. Vinegar is a lot cheaper than commercial products. I use it to clean everything except counters that have come in contact with raw meat.

5) Flippantly turning the thermostat up or down.  A few months ago I became a Thermostat Nazi.  I was shocked at the amount of cash I saved when I set the thermostat a few degrees warmer in the summer/cooler in the winter. Seriously. Our bill dropped by $60-100 per month.

Some people may think I’m cheap because I use vinegar as hair conditioner or because I get excited about good thrift store finds ( I would have thought this a year ago). I don’t really care. My husband and I are paying the bills with one income AND saving money. That’s pretty exciting.


Giving

A Couple Of Girls I Met On a Service Trip

How does giving fit into saving?  This is a difficult question to answer.  I am definitely not an expert.  I DO know that there are many families in the world who have no money to save or budget.  They do not even have food, water or much of a future.  This breaks my heart.

I have visited poverty-stricken people in Brazil, Turkey and Vietnam on service trips.  The conditions they live in SPUR me to give.  Their stories cause me to think twice before purchasing frivolous items.  I have been forced to wonder why I am so blessed.   Thus, I am compelled to give.

Did you know you could change a family’s future by giving 2 chickens for $25?  You could also give the gift of clean water for the same price. This astounds me.

I am impelled to help poverty-stricken people due to my experiences. You may not feel the same way. I do urge you to think about giving to an organization you believe in. This could be your church, The Salvation Army, and etc.  HERE are 12 great giving quotes from a blog written by someone who really knows how to save!


Organize the Little Things

This blog is all about the little expenses that add up.   Do you ever come home from a grocery trip and realize you bought something you already have? Have you ever forgotten about the left-overs until they were no longer edible?  I’ve done the aforementioned actions HUNDREDS of times.  After I bought my 100th bottle of crushed red pepper (okay, that’s a bit of an exaggeration) I decided I needed to come up with a system.  Thus, I’ve started making lists. Here’s your quick how-to:

1) Make a Spice List

Pull every type of spice you have and write them in alphabetical order, or type the list up on your computer.  Put an “H” by all the your items.  The “H” stands for “Have.”  Tape this list on the inside of the cupboard you keep your spices in.  When you use the last of a spice, cross out the “H” and write “N” for “Need.”

2) Make a Medicine Cabinet List

Cold season is upon us.  Do you have what you need?  Mark “H” by each product you do own.  Mark “N” for “Need” on items you are running short on!  Make sure the medicine is NOT expired.  Tape the list to the inside of your medicine cabinet for quick viewing.  Here is a link to help you anticipate your medicine cabinet needs.

3) Organize the Pantry

I organize this cupboard a little differently.  I keep a list of items I don’t use frequently (baking powder, cornstarch, vanilla, etc) attached to my cupboard door.  I mark those items with an “H” or “N” just like I do with the spices.  For items that I am constantly using, (rice, pasta, beans) I mark on a whiteboard in my kitchen ONLY when I run out.  This definitely helps with meal planning, too.

4) Organize the Fridge

1) Attach a piece of paper to the fridge weekly.  Whenever you have left-overs, make a notation.  This will remind you that you have food that needs to be consumed!

2) Clean your fridge as you write your grocery list.  Not only will your fridge remain squeaky clean, you won’t have to store 3 bottles of ketchup and Italian dressing.  Keeping tabs on your food will help you eliminate buying unnecessary items.

How do you organize the little things?

*This blog reflects the opinion of the author. Please understand that all information or opinions gleaned from this blog are done so at your OWN risk*