My son’s Iron Giant toy just sold for $102.50 on eBay.
I have been somewhat cash poor lately. My day job as a labor and delivery nurse has been a bit sporadic of late, (C’mon suburban Portland ladies, surely a night of fun and games without birth control is worth it. Right?!) and as a result my paychecks have been lighter than a piece of space shuttle Wonder Bread. And as much as I hate not having a checking account cushion, I am not stressing. Why?
Because I know how to spend less money and how to earn more money.
Here’s how my family spend less money this weekend:
- Both my sons had soccer games over the weekend. We choose to have them play recreation soccer over classic soccer. This means a $45 playing fee rather than a $1000 fee.
- I made pizza from scratch on Saturday night. This was partly due to a bag of shredded mozzarella cheese that I was worried was soon to get funky. I bought pepperoni and sausage from my local pizza joint, which set us back $1.
- My younger son had a 24+ hour sleepover with an old friend. I rented them a movie from the Redbox near the house. I used a Groupon, which brought the price down to 33.34¢.
- My older son had his girlfriend to the house all day Sunday. For dinner I made chicken adobo, using drumsticks, which are much cheaper than chicken breasts.
- We drove nowhere except the soccer games, (for which we provided the carpool) and walked all our errands.
- I took my younger son and his friend to the nearby nickel arcade. I used a coupon for free admission, which included $5 in nickels. I cautioned them to make the money last.
- When it turned out that were at the arcade an hour before it opened, we walked over to the park where the boys played on the swings and had a contest about who could jump the farthest from their swing.
- I made sure to return my marble reference book back to the library before it was due. This saves me 25¢ per day.
- We did no recreational shopping, even to thrift stores.
Here’s how we made more money:
- I continued selling extra valuable belongings on eBay. I currently have the last of my Goodwill marbles for sale, which will end tonight. I also sold my son’s Iron Giant stuffed robot for $102.50, (he gets to keep this money) and a stack of old Mary Engelbreit Home Companion magazines for $40.99.
- I found $1.21 on the ground and in the change return slots at the arcade. I used part of this to pay off my 75¢ library fine.
- I continued selling extra plants from my garden on my front steps. This may sound a bit meshugenah, but I made $1 yesterday, and when my younger son needed $10 cash for a haircut last week, I was able to grab some “plant money” to cover the cost. I estimate this little experiment has garnered $25.
- My husband was a given a generous Starbucks gift card as a thank you for volunteering to coach the soccer team. He doesn’t volunteer for the freebies, but parents will often give him small token gifts.
- I blogged. I don’t make a fortune with The Non-Consumer Advocate, but I did receive a Blogher check for $120.05 on Saturday.
None one of these frugal hacks will set you financially free, but the combination of everything together makes a huge difference in our lives.
Today, I will spend the day whipping the house into shape, dealing with a few Monday morning chores and maybe even planning a few more eBay listings. And hopefully, the scheduler at work will let me know that I’ve been granted a regular number of shifts for next month.
What are you doing to spend less and earn more? Please share your ideas in the comments section below.