Okay, a few more things have caught my attention on the topic of saving money. So here are the ideas, in no particular order.
We make our own laundry detergent. Here are some recipes for homemade laundry detergent, we use recipe number three. I've had good sucess with it, it even gets my diapers clean. And I love the fresh scent of the Fels Naptha soap. Mmmm...
I (usually) bath BuggaBoo in the utility sink. This is a new one, I stumbled onto it a few weeks ago. It started because he has a SUPER poopy diaper (yup, I'm a mom) and I didn't want to rinse off his bum the tub. Low and behold, the sink in the laundry room worked great. I love it because I don't have to bend over, Baby loves it because I'm not squishing him/her by bending over, and BuggaBoo loves the novelty of being in the sink. It saves a ton of hot water to bathe him in the sink, which is just the thing I like to hear.
We own a li'l scooter for The Hubby's commute in the summer. This thing can go a loooooong way on a tank of gas. He only has to fill up once for an entire work week, which for him is 3-4 days a week. We save so much money that way.
We buy a student public transportation pass in the winters. When the weather gets too icky to safely drive the scooter The Hubby gets a Tri-Met pass through Portland State University and uses it to go to school and work. This is also nice because it leaves me with the car. This semester he is driving to school and work but that's because my due date is so near and he doesn't want to have to be sitting on the train trying to get back to me if I'm in labor.
I breastfeed. Not only does this save on formula costs but it saves on medical costs. BuggaBoo has gotten sick a few times, but very rarely and never seriously. He's never had an ear infection. Breastfeeding helps with your child's immune system EVEN IF YOU'RE NOT PRODUCING MILK. A lot of the antibody transference is from the areola and nipple area, so just the act of breastfeeding protects your child from illness.
I know how to sew. Do you HAVE to sew to save money? No. And sewing from brand-spanking-new fabric is hardly cost effective. But altering clothes, especially free, oversized clothes, is a great money saving strategy. And it's even easier to make children clothing from adult-sized clothing. It helped me make cloth diapers on the cheap. I was able to pick up some free flannel bedsheets to use, my MIL bought me some uber cute fabric (thank you!) and I was able to pick up more flannel fabric/bedsheets at the Goodwill Outlet, a thrift store where you buy stuff by the pound.
We're on a "Time of Use" plan from our power company. The "Time of Use" plan, or TOU, is where energy is less expensive during off-peak hours and more expensive during on-peak hours. There are also mid-peak hours. The different prices for us are $0.04/kwh, $0.06/kwh, and $0.12/kwh. The hours change from winter to summer, but basically power late at night and all day Sunday is cheap while power in the evening is expensive. When I had more time in my life this saved us more money, but it's still working for us. Our cheap power starts at 10pm, so that's when I wash and dry diapers. I'll also cook things overnight in the cockpot, or do prep cooking on Sundays for the entire week. This also helps us when we decide to heat the bedroom since we heat it when we're sleeping and power is inexpensive.
Okay, my brain is mushy again. Have a great day!