This little tree was made from a larger tree. The angel on top was made by my Hubby in kindergarten. It is over 70 years old. I am surprised that it has held up as well as it has. I am waiting for our new tree skirt to arrive and it will be finished.
Now that we have put up our little Christmas tree, have written our cards, and have all of our Christmas giving taken care of, my mind has turned to the little tips and hacks that we will use to help us save money this month and next year in this inflationary cycle. These will be in no particular order. I will just write them as they pop into my head.
We will be eating from our food pantry. As we do that we will make sure to eat the proper portions which will ration the food that we have. We will only buy meat if I see a rock bottom price and then I will buy what we have room for. We only have a small chest freezer and the regular refrigerator so not a lot of freezer space. I do have the supplies to can meat that I see on sale. However, I am running out of shelves to store it on. I will buy fresh produce and dairy as I need it. We will do our best to not waste food as I told you in a prior post. I do believe that food prices will continue to surge. There are certain things that I will not buy now because I deem the price to be too high. Red meat except for ground beef and chuck roasts, coffee, soda, most fish, bacon, most junk food, etc. come to mind.
I will be keeping track of every penny of our money and tracking what is spent with the online program that we use. I will be better about using my price book to track prices as they go up so that I know what the best deal is.
We will continue to close the heating vents in our two spare bedrooms, close the doors, and put the draft snakes in front of the bottom of the doors. We will heat them back up the day before we have company coming the end of the month. This should help with our natural gas bill. We will make sure that we keep the bathroom vent and door open in the bathroom between these two rooms so that the pipes don’t freeze.
We made a decision this year to only minimally decorate our home with lights so we could save that cost in our electric bill. So our little tree is all the lights we have. It is enough for us to enjoy each evening. As we age, it is also getting harder to drag all of the decorating items from our basement to the upstairs. I think when my son and granddaughter come the end of the month, we will share decorations for my son’s tree with him. He doesn’t have many in his new home since his divorce. I will also let my other son take any that he wants. Then we will donate the rest of them to Goodwill.
Clothing prices have gone up here. I will be buying some jeans and tops for Hubby and myself when I see them go on sale after we lose some more weight. But I will be looking for a sale at that time. And the amount we will buy will be minimal.
I do not pay for shipping unless I ship something myself out of our local UPS which I will be doing today. Fortunately we have AAA. That gives us 5% off our cost to ship. I have free shipping for anything on walmart.com because I have their grocery plus delivery plan. I only use Amazon when I have the minimal amount of money that you have to spend in order to get free shipping.
We are setting our budget for 2022 this week. It will be as bare bones as we can get without cutting things that we enjoy like cable TV.
We will be spending on things that help us stay in our home that we love like landscaping and maintenance services. They are a necessity.
We rarely eat out but when we do, we support a family owned business. The food is better than the run of the mill big chains. In 2022, we will plan on eating out about every three months. Other than those occasions, all food will be cooked and eaten at home.
We plan on repairing as many things that we can ourselves before we call a repairman or buy new. We have stocked on a number of things that we might need to do that. You Tube is a great resource when you need to know how to repair something.
I will be planting a larger garden this spring so that we can cross some more of the things we buy off our list.
We are learning to make things that we have always purchased. Hubby is now making all of our salad dressings as the prepared ones run out. His latest is Italian Vinagrette which is delicious.
We will be making the little bit of bread and rolls that we do eat. Desserts, with the exception of some ice cream when the grandchildren visit, will be made here at home.
Our one main goal in 2022 is to become as self reliant as possible. Things are not going to get better in this country anytime soon and there is nothing we can do to control that. So we will work all year on the areas that we can control. When we had a period like this in the 1970’s, we survived by being very creative with everything we did. It actually was fun to do all the little things that helped us thrive and get through it.
Most importantly we will do all of this with gratitude in our hearts for the things that we do have and can do that makes our lives so much richer.
Have you thought about how you will cut expenses in 2022?