My New Year Resolution on Saving Money in 2012

Almost six years ago when I woke up from my a 4-day induced coma so that the doctors could treat me for septic shock, I immediately thought about how life can be simpler and what to do with my second chance to live. Although I took the normal course of action to determine whether I had a claim for malpractice, I immediately set that thought aside when the one law firm we consulted said that we did not have a claim. I had almost 3 months to think about my life. The ideas that I valued then will still be carried to 2012.

Carbon Footprint

A carbon footprint is a measurement of the impact of our activities onto the environment, thus affecting climate change. I am a firm believer in reducing the amount of my carbon footprint. My kids often asked me why we cannot just leave the light on since we make our own electricity through solar panels. My reply is that we do not always make the maximum amount of energy, especially in wintertime,which is also when we use a lot more energy. Even though we make solar energy, we still use gas to heat the house. Likewise, I recycle whenever I can so that this material can be reused. I also try to reuse the packaging that comes with the food that I purchase.

Repair What You Can

Of course one shouldn't repair to the detriment of our pocketbook, but it can be less costly than buying something new. A good example of a costly repair is our broken frontloading washing machine that cost us a fortunate but it was supposed to save water. I wished that someone told me that it could not handle sand from kids' playground. To replace the drum would have cost at least $900. We said no thanks and bought an "open box" Maytag toploader for under $300. We figure that by the time the dryer that went with the Frigidaire frontloader broke, it wouldn't be too costly to find another combination set. It has been 5.5 years since the younger child was in preschool, and the toploader is going strong.

On the flipside, around this time of year, i would be at the Old Navy sales buying numerous pairs of girls' leggings. Instead, I sewed and ironed patches onto her torn knees. If I had to buy the materials for this repair, it would have added to the overall calculation of whether the repair was worth it or not. But I have ample sewing supplies.

Never Paid Retail Price

Unless you never eat out or you are alone, there is always a reason to keep an Entertainment book handy. Recently, I purchased 2 of them through Fatwallet so that I can receive the 17% cashback. There was already a sale since the new book started in the summertime, but I also received a discount for acquiring a second one. Anytime you eat out and don't use a coupon, the eating establishment made money off you. My son would play the devil's advocate by saying that our family is not fueling the economy. However, my paycheck is not enough to be fueling anybody's economy.

Also, Fatwallet is the best cash back site. I will try to look at the site to see if cashback is available and never buy direct.

If it does not appear in the Entertainment book or at Fatwallet, Retailmenot is another place for discount codes. We spend a lot of money at Home Depot and Lowe's and usefully we can find a $10 off $50 on the internet.

Buy Less Perishable Food and Use All of the Perishable Food

When people are going hungry, why let grocery in the refrigerate go to waste? If that is happening, you are buying food that you do not consume. We purchased a Foodsaver last year to make smaller portions to freeze and use later. My husband mocks me sometimes when I tell him that it is not necessary to eat large chunks of meat. Asians tend to cut up a steak to serve a family. I am hoping to return to my roots and eat smaller portions of meat, make meal plans so that food does not go to waste in the refrigerator, especially cheese.

More Exercise

I notice that when I exercise, I tend to eat healthier such as fruits and vegetables, which are less expensive than processed food. It is a win-win situation to eat healthful food and maintain good weight. Plus, most of us have exercise equipment that we have not used. By using the equipment, you will not think about joining a gym. There are a number of exercise routines that can be done at home with some basic items such as canned food or packs of rice. Recently, when I needed 2 pound weights for some physical therapy routines, I sewed pouches that contained 1/2 pounds of rice.

I am sure that there will always be a need to spend money, e.g. paying for my girl's cavity fillings. However, I will make an attempt at saving money in 2012.

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Comments 14 comments

teaches12345 profile image

teaches12345 5 years ago

I like your ideas of exercise, less waste in foods and mending what you have. I am glad that you were given extra years to enjoy. Sounds like you came up on top. Have a great 2012.

formosangirl profile image

formosangirl 5 years ago from Los Angeles Author

Teach12345, thanks for your comment. Happy New Year.

prospectboy profile image

prospectboy 5 years ago from Texas

Excellent article. This write up is very inspiring. I will make an effort to be more conscious of some of the ideas you brought. I already implement a few of them, but there is always room for more ideas to better our lives. It's also inspiring that you came through your ordeal and that you have a second chance to live. Happy New Years to you, and best wishes for 2012.

formosangirl profile image

formosangirl 5 years ago from Los Angeles Author

Thanks Prospectboy. Happy New Year! I also started Jan. 1 with chanting and rowing. Off to a good start. According to one of the new year countdown shows, saving money is the #1 new year's resolution.

alocsin profile image

alocsin 5 years ago from Orange County, CA

I think these are all resolutions we can get behind for ourselves. Voting this Up and Interesting.

formosangirl profile image

formosangirl 5 years ago from Los Angeles Author

Thanks, Alocsin, for commenting on this article. I appreciate it. I am pretty hopeful about 2012.

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soumyasrajan 5 years ago from Mumbai India and often in USA

I like your article very much formosagirl. Nice simple ideas. Why call them frugal, such ideas should become just part of normal life.

Have you heard of this general observation from doctors about people who had near death type experiences or about behavior of a person coming out of very serious disease, that the person after that experience becomes calmer and often a little more spiritual too. Perhaps you had also similar feeling generated after than coma experience.

Nice feeling any way, makes life better.

formosangirl profile image

formosangirl 5 years ago from Los Angeles Author

Soumyasrajan, I did not know about the calmness. I am calmer. Unless one faces near death, one does not stop to evaluate what is important. People are caught up in the rat race. Like actors in their career, how many people actually can say that they have won the "rat race" and are truly happy? Happiness must come from within. The most important people in history weren't known for being the best carpenter, etc.; they were know for being the kindest and wisest individuals. I have always been a bit mystical, but since my coma, I feel a lot more spiritual. Nirchiren Daishonin wrote in his article called Happiness in this World, "Suffer what there is to suffer, enjoy what there is to enjoy. Regard both suffering and joy as facts of life, and continue chanting Nam-myoho-renge-kyo. no matter what happens. " Thanks for visiting and your insight.

Jennifer Essary profile image

Jennifer Essary 5 years ago from Idaho

Very useful tips that are not only good for your wallet but also the environment. I always search for coupon codes before I buy something online. Voted up and useful. Thanks for SHARING!

formosangirl profile image

formosangirl 5 years ago from Los Angeles Author

Thanks, Jennifer. I enjoyed your comments.

Millionaire Tips profile image

Millionaire Tips 5 years ago from USA

These are all great ideas - good for the environment, good for your health, and good for the pocketbook. I know you are helping the economy, because you are showing people that it is still possible to eat out, and you are buying what you need.

formosangirl profile image

formosangirl 5 years ago from Los Angeles Author

Millionaire Tips, thanks for your comment. Recently I ate at a local restaurant where average entrees started at $9 but most were in the $15 and up. Three out of the five at the table threw up to half of their entrees away, including untouched sandwiches. Only two of us took our leftovers home. My two children were able to sample linguine with clam in red sauce and the rest of the delicious herb rolls, and none of my entree went into a landfill.

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soumyasrajan 5 years ago from Mumbai India and often in USA

I liked your reply formosangirl. I quite agree "Happiness must come from within." It does generally, only lost in rat race we do not realize it some times.

formosangirl profile image

formosangirl 5 years ago from Los Angeles Author

Thanks, Soumyasrajan, for your kind words.

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