In the Kitchen:
1] Shop around your local grocery stores to find the cheapest prices. There's no point in spending more if you don't have to.
2] Make your own lunch. Make his lunch as well. Fast food seems so cheap when ordering, but if you think about it, it adds up very quickly!
3] When cooking, cook large amounts and store the rest to eat throughout the week. Make sure to look up how to properly store certain foods.
4] Whether permitting, cook outside! You don't need to use the energy of the stove or microwave, if you have a perfectly good grill ;)
5] Make your own coffee or morning beverage instead of stopping at convenient stores. Bring cans of soda or bottles of water and bring snacks from home to work to avoid vending machines. Vending machines have huge mark-up rates.
6] Buy in bulk (only when it makes sense.) Use as many coupons as possible. Yea, become the crazy coupon lady! I stood behind a woman in the grocery store last week who had a STACK of coupons... know what she saved? $42.00!! WHAT?!
7] Plan the grocery trip once a week with a strict budget and try not to go during the week for fill in items. A trip to spend 5 dollars usually ends with a basket full of 50 dollar junk, right?
8] Buy generic. I swear, I've been buying Oreo's for my fiance' for years and have never noticed the off brand ones right next to them are a whole 2 dollars less! Luckily, he didn't notice either when I switched them out ;)
9] Save the grocery bags to use as liners for the smaller trash cans ;) duh, I know.
Around the House:
1] Anything that can be made at home, make it! I have tons of DIY tips above in "Learn the Tricks."
2] Practice regular upkeep. It's far better to spend a little here and there to keep up appliances and such than it is to have to replace something!
3] If you shop online, make sure it's worth it... Find sites that offer free shipping, etc.
4] Unplug things that are not in use. I've heard that leaving things like phone chargers plugged when not actually charging your phone, it's wasting energy!
5] Keep air condition filters clean and changed regularly.
6] Insulate your hot water heater... I have no idea what that means, but the honey said I don't have to worry about that one.
7] Always make sure the water is turned all the way off!
8] Turn off all lights when not in use.
9] Cut the family's hair at home... if your brave enough ;) I've been cutting and coloring my own hair for years. It's a great way to save money!
10] Sign up for savings on websites that offer coupons or club savings!
11] When putting aside money to save, it always works better with change! We put aside 10 dollars a week in change every week for emergencies. If I put in a 10 dollar bill and I know it's there, I always find a use for it! If it's in change, it becomes a hassle to cash in at Coinstar; therefore, most of the time, I don't touch it ;) Smart right?!
In the laundry room:
1] Follow the instructions on the washing machine as closely as possible. I've read that more detergent than needed can make the machine work harder, thus raising your electricity bill.
2] Whenever possible, hang dry your clothes. I personally LOVE the smell of clothing that has been dried in the fresh air... mmmm.
3] Use cold water whenever possible.
4] Use liquid detergent instead of powder. My grandmother always told me that washing powder can clog the washer, and nobody wants an unplanned bill for a new washer :/
5] Wash only full batches. Set aside the clothes to wash once or twice a week if you can.
6] Keep the dryer filter clean! This not only helps energy use, but prevent dangerous situations.
7] Anything and everything that you can make yourself... Make it!! It saves a ton!
Homemade laundry things here!
In the Bathroom:
1] Don't fill the tub up when bathing. Cut showers shorter than normal.
2] Turn the water off when brushing you teeth.
3] I know this sounds silly, but use a WHOLE bar of soap before opening another one. I've noticed around here that if we put a new one in while we still have half of one left, no one uses it and we throw it away. So wasteful!
4] Make products last twice as long by adding water!! Shampoo, conditioner, leave in products, hand soap, body wash... all of these things work just as good when half the bottle is water! I wouldn't add water to mouthwash (it will dilute it!)
1] Use the rain water to your advantage. Catch it in barrels or buckets to water the flowers and plants when it doesn't rain for a while! Also, wash the fruits and veggies off in the actual garden, not to waste water ;)
2] Use solar powered lights and lamps.
3] Wash the vehicles yourself.
4] Motion sensor lights are not normally necessary and they can stay on more than you'd like!