In all seriousness all my life I’ve been pinching pennies. Financial stability has always been a dream, and just not in the mix for my mixed up family. At the time of writing this, I am on the cusp of breaking out of that, but for the time being I’m still pretty stuck in it so I thought I’d share some of the wisdom I’ve acquired. (When you make penny-pinching sound wisdom-ess it’s less painful, right? ;))
These are my tips & tricks for money saving on the journey to RD. The good, the bad, and the ugly, but 100% honest.
- Shopped at No Frills. No frills, no BS, no brand name, no fancy shit – just food. That’s all I ever needed – just food. I mean, I was tempted to shop with sunglasses on because that gawd-awful yellow is friggin’ BLINDING, but it was worth it to save tonnnns of money on food.
- Shopped the ‘Naturally Imperfect’ produce. This was readily available at No Frills but I know many grocery chains are jumping on board the imperfect produce train. And why not?! It tastes the same, costs a FRACTION of the price, and helps save the world, so like win-win-win, right?
- Ate lots of beans. Beans are a much cheaper protein than most meats so I started playing with them in new recipes and ended up with much smaller grocery bills. Great tip: When I would make pulled pork I’d mix cooked red lentils in with the BBQ sauce. Cooked red lentils go down practically to mush so when I mixed it in with the meat and the sauce the overall texture of pulled pork wasn’t very compromised, it literally tasted NO different, and it gave me about twice the portion.
- Used a friend’s Netflix. Those who actually pay for Netflix are angels. Especially since the price got jacked up – thanks pals.
- Walked everywhere. I mean this was in part because I didn’t have a car, but I also skipped out on public transit a fair bit. Long story short if it was a 30 minute walk or less (and like a 2 second ride), I was walking. (Even with armloads of stuff in crazy heat…)
- Traveled only with carry-ons and wore a ridiculous # of layers in airports. Do I have any friends fans out there?
- Used Uber pool. Never have I ever had a bad encounter with a fellow pool-er. Even the non-chatty ones would give you a little half sided smile like, ‘Hey man, so you’re poor as shit too? Cool.’
- Went to events with free food, just for the food.
- Got GF bread coupons
- Never bought coffee out. Ever. This is true even to this day. If you ever see me with a store bought coffee in my hands know that is out of PURE desperation and you should probably steer clear of me because I am likely to crumble at any moment.