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Frugal Calendar For Frugal Living

Updated on October 8, 2013
Embracing the frugal life
Embracing the frugal life | Source
A frugal calendar
A frugal calendar | Source

RANDOM THOUGHTS ON FRUGAL LIVING

"Most of the luxuries, and many of the so-called comforts of life, are not only not indispensable, but positive hindrances to the elevation of mankind."
-Henry David Thoreau

Now there was a guy who understood what frugal living is all about. Thoreau was light years ahead of his time, as he was warning us about consumerism and needless spending 170 years ago. I wonder what he would think of today’s world?

I know that for some of you out there, frugal living is like a trip to the Twilight Zone. I understand that we live in a society where spending is King, bigger is better, and there are those who feel we are measured by the number of possessions that we own.

Silly of course, but there you have it.

There are others, though, who understand that one does not need to spend excessively to be happy. There are others, still, who believe that the economy is not going to get better, that the middle class is disappearing, and that those on the low end of the economic scale have virtually no chance of rising any higher.

Those are the ones who are now embracing frugal living. Those are the ones who understand the difference between need and want, and who are taking steps to insure that they will never be without those things that they need, but also will never be held down by too many “wants” and too much credit debt.

I understand that it can seem to be a very daunting task to take on frugality all at once. Selling off everything, going on a Spartan budget, and learning to live off the land is a bit too much for some people to accept. That is why I propose you dip your big toe into the frugal waters rather than dive in headfirst. Start out slow, see how you like it, adjust to a few small changes in your lifestyle, and then add on as you feel comfortable in doing so.

This calendar is for you! This calendar gives you one suggestion to try each month of 2013, a dipping of the proverbial toe. None of these suggestions are hard to do, and none will seem to be too large a shift in lifestyle. Try one frugal idea per month and maybe, just maybe, they will become natural to you and you just might like them.

Shall we begin your new outlook on life?

Source

JANUARY

Plan meals according to what is on sale that week! Instead of always buying New York Steak for the family, buy a lesser cut of meat that is much less expensive. Instead of buying a premium coffee, go with one that is discounted down that week. Instead of buying whole chickens, go with another turkey since they will be discounted in January.

Challenge yourself to find cheaper products that will still allow you freedom in preparing meals. Which is cheaper, ground beef or ground turkey? You can make the same meals out of both of them, so why not go with the cheaper of the two for one month?

FEBRUARY

Cook only on Sunday! Make enough on Sundays to last the entire week. You will be surprised how much money you save by doing this. Prepare a chicken and roast, and then coast the rest of the week eating leftovers. Boil that chicken carcass and make soup. Use the roast leftovers for sandwiches. Stretch those Sunday meals out and don’t choke under the pressure and do extra grocery shopping or extra cooking during the week.

Only cooking on one day per week saves money, and it also saves time during the weekdays that can be better spent relaxing and enjoying down time.

MARCH

Shop thrift stores for one month for all clothing and household items! No cheating now! For the entire month you may not buy any new clothing or accessories.

This writer has purchased two new pairs of jeans and one package of underwear in four years. Period! Everything else I needed, from fleece outerwear to socks, have been purchased at Goodwill. If I can do that over a four-year span, you can certainly do it for one month.

Alternative option: build a small greenhouse using plastic sheeting and flexible tent poles. Get some seedlings started so you can reap the benefits of fresh produce in the summer.

APRIL

Start a garden! You can either build raised garden beds or dig out a garden in your yard. What do you say? You have no room in the yard? Well then make a container garden on your patio, or make a vertical garden using an old pallet.

Every penny you save growing your own veggies and/or herbs is a penny you can use for some other need; you also get the peace of mind that comes with knowing that your food is safe from pesticides and from chemicals injected into the store-bought produce.

MAY

Turn off all lights in the house during the day, and leave them off….for the entire month. If you absolutely cannot do without lights on, then lessen the number of lights that you use. You get bonus points if you unplug your microwave when you aren’t using it. You get double bonus points if you lower the thermostat in your house by two degrees.

Less energy used + less energy paid for = happy frugal homeowners!

We do it and you could too
We do it and you could too | Source

JUNE

Hang up a clothes line outside and begin hanging your washed clothes on the line to dry. No using your dryer unless absolutely necessary!

What’s the benefit? Are you serious? First, you are saving money because that dryer is not gulping energy, and secondly your clothes will have that wonderful fresh smell and feel to them, like they did when you were a kid and your mom hung the laundry outside.

If you don’t have a backyard then put up a clothes rack out on your patio or deck.

JULY

Hold a garage sale! Spend June gathering all of your unwanted items and yes, you do have unwanted and unneeded items! Plan on having your sale any weekend other than the 4th of July weekend; make up flyers, put signs at the major intersections, and then sit back and collect your cash.

Frugal living embraces de-cluttering, and nothing de-clutters like a garage sale. Anything that you do not sell, take to the Goodwill and donate it.

So easy to do
So easy to do | Source

AUGUST

Do not spend any of your change! For one month you are forbidden from spending even a penny. All change goes into a central holding container. All family members have to empty their pockets into that container each night. If you are at the store and the total of your purchase is $6.04, then give the clerk seven bucks and get change back; you may not give her six bucks and four pennies! No cheating allowed!

Why? Because this is a quick way to save some money for other needs, and you just might find it becomes a habit, so that by the end of November you have enough money for Christmas gifts.

SEPTEMBER

No television for one week this month! Just one week! I was going to suggest for an entire month but decided I was pushing my luck with that one. J

Unplug the television, or put it into storage, for one week. The kids have sports and homework, and of course they have computers for entertainment. This writer has not had a television for six years, so I’m thinking any one of you can go one week without it. Why would you? Of course I could say to save money on electricity, but the truth is that television promotes spending through the ads. It also takes away from quality time that a family can spend together.

OCTOBER

Do not use any credit cards for one month! Pay cash for everything you need for the entire month. If you don’t have enough cash to pay for needs then you can use that change that you have been saving for two months. If you still don’t have enough cash then sell some items on ebay, or have another garage sale.

Credit card debt is killing this country. Try for one month not adding to that debt.

What do you think? Can you do this for one week per month?

See results

NOVEMBER

Give your time to a local charity! I did not say give to a local charity; I said give your time to a local charity. Big difference! There is a huge difference between giving ten cans of food to the Food Bank and working at the Food Bank for an afternoon. There is a big difference between tossing a couple bucks at a homeless man, and working at the Soup Kitchen serving the homeless.

There are people who are absolutely miserable every single day of the year. November is the month that we give thanks, so give your thanks by giving your time to help others.

DECEMBER

Set a budget for gift-giving this holiday season and then stick to the budget. Instead of buying gifts, make them yourself. Homemade gifts say “I love you” so much better than store-bought gifts.

If you really want to get into the spirit of the season, give one less gift to everyone in the family and buy a gift for someone in need.

And if you really want to dazzle the frugal gods, do not put lights up outside. It just wastes energy and flushes your hard-earned money down the toilet.

Let's chat about simple living

ONE YEAR BUT A GREAT START

Can you do it? Can you make one small change in lifestyle each month? I’m betting that you can, and I’m also betting that you will enjoy the change.

If some of these suggestions just won’t work, you can rest assured that I will be writing an alternative calendar that will be out soon. It will have different suggestions for each month, so you can pick and choose between the two…..or…..you can use both ideas during each month, and then you will be well on your way to being a frugal guru!

2012 William D. Holland (aka billybuc)

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    • Janine Huldie profile image

      Janine Huldie 4 years ago from New York, New York

      Bill, awesome Calendar suggestions for the upcoming year. I am pinning this article to refer back to. Thanks seriously for the wonderful article and am going to try to do a bit of this in the upcoming year. Have of course voted up and shared all over!!

    • btrbell profile image

      Randi Benlulu 4 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Up, awesome, useful! This is great, Bill! There shoulbe a physical down loadable calander because these are great, "doable" suggestions for everyone! Thank you for these great ideas that will hopefully get more people on board! One added note, I dry my laundry in the house on a free standinding clothes rack. Boy does my house smell good on launbdry day! Great job, my friend!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Janine, thank you as always. I thought i would make it as simple as possible for people....just one week! How hard could that be? :)

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Randi, I love that, and we do that too! It's a shame more people don't do it, but we live in a convenience society where everyone is in a hurry. Oh well, change happens slowly at times. :) thank you Randi!

    • midget38 profile image

      Michelle Liew 4 years ago from Singapore

      Awesome money saving ideas, Bill. Thanks for sharing them! I am like you, I usually turn the lights off during the day and will budget this Christmas too. Thanks for sharing, I share as well.

    • carol7777 profile image

      carol stanley 4 years ago from Arizona

      What great economy ideas and think if people just did a few of these suggestions..money saved and that wonderful feeling of recycling and creating our own food etc. Love these ideas. Make a calendar with artsy stuff on it to represent each month. Print on heavy paper and voila you have a calendar for the year. Sell it to all of your fans here on Hubpages. Bet you will make some dollars here. First in line.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Michelle, thank you! I'm always a bit surprised by the number of houses I go by during the day that have all of their lights on. What a waste!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Carol....LOL....you just put two words together that don't match....Bill and artsy! :) I do like the idea....a frugal calendar....they just might sell. Now you have me thinking. Thanks a lot, Carol; one more thing for me to get involved in. :)

    • Lord De Cross profile image

      Joseph De Cross 4 years ago

      Extraordinary calendar from the guru of frugality, but every now and then you could spare some dollars to make some pies for the needy. Someone hinted me! This needs to be bookmarked and carefully re-read the month before. Thanks my friend!

    • rfmoran profile image

      Russ Moran 4 years ago from Long Island, New York

      Simple yet excellent tips. I especially like the one about saving your change. It does add up fast. Following this calendar (I'm not sure about the unplugged tv) will make life simpler and more serene.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Rfmoran, I know, television is a tough one for many. Oh well, we start small, right? :) Thank you and have a great weekend.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Joseph, you are right of course....we have extra pies from Thanksgiving in the freezer and they are earmarked for the needy. Feels good to give, you know?

      Thank you my friend and have a great weekend.

    • LaThing profile image

      LaThing 4 years ago from From a World Within, USA

      Great ideas to save for the whole year! Love it.... But I think I will have little difficulty with March, but I promise I will try the other ones as much as I can! :))

      Your hub is very encouraging..... These are simple things yet very practical. Thanks for sharing, Billy, really enjoyed it, voting up and awesome!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Lizzie, you won't be the only one having trouble with March. LOL Hey, eleven out of twelve isn't bad at all, right? :)

      Thank you my friend and have a great weekend!

      I just noticed your profile now says From a World Within....didn't it once say North Country, or Northeast? I don't know why I notice the little, mundane stuff, but I do. :)

    • krsharp05 profile image

      krsharp05 4 years ago from 18th and Vine

      We started a change jar one year and boy the kids were upset! They hated contributing all of their change to that jar! We made it mandatory that everyone in the house put their extra change in the jar every day. At the end of three months, we had more than $100 which helped pay for the kids and I to go the the water park....think they mind throwing their change in the change jar now? They run for it! Hallelujah! This is fantastic and what a perfect time of year. The only thing I cannot bring myself to do is hang the laundry out on the line. I'm a sucker for the dryer sheets. At least I buy the cheap ones though :) I hope you have a wonderful holiday! Blessed be. -K

    • shiningirisheyes profile image

      Shining Irish Eyes 4 years ago from Upstate, New York

      Although I am certainly not off the grid, I appreciate and practice many of the helpful suggestions you point out. And some of my favorite hobbies include frugal living. Gardening, cruising thrift stores and garage sales are many of my best pass times.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Beckie, I have no doubt that this calendar has your name on it. :) Off the grid? Not yet for us, either, but we are getting closer to that day.

      smiles and love coming your way

      billy

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      K....love that story about your kids. Good for you, and what a great lesson for them to learn.

      As for the dryer sheets, I get it, truly. I guess I'm just an old-fashioned boy. :) Thank you my friend, and I wish happiness to you and yours over the holidays.

      bill

    • LaThing profile image

      LaThing 4 years ago from From a World Within, USA

      LOL, Yep, it does say that.... Just wanted to make it little different, hehe.... northeast sounded little boring! :)

      And forgot to ask you, IS THAT YOU up top?? My you had lot of hair! :))

      Have a great weekend!

    • Crystal Tatum profile image

      Crystal Tatum 4 years ago from Georgia

      Wow, what a great hub! I like how you break everything down by month to make these major changes more manageable. Voted up and awesome!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Lizzie, yes, that was me. I had years when I had more hair than that....somewhat of a rebel when I was younger. :) Happy to say I haven't lost my hair over the years; I wonder what I would look like bald? Scary thought. LOL

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Crystal, I figured I'd better do that so I didn't scare people off before they gave it a try. LOL Thank you young lady; it's nice to see you.

    • lrc7815 profile image

      Linda Crist 4 years ago from Central Virginia

      Well, this was creative and makes it easy enough for anyone. I agree with Randi. It should be printed and glued to the refrigerator in every home to serve as a reminder. Everything you suggested can be done without pain for the tme periods you have suggested. Putting the toe in the water was the perfect analogy. We can all do that! Loved it, Am sharing it. Voted it up and across the board. Think of all the conversations that would happen if every family turned off the television, even for one night. The possibilities are infinite.

    • tipstoretireearly profile image

      tipstoretireearly 4 years ago from New York

      Great idea to break up these frugal living ideas into manageable chunks that are appropriate for the time of year. Its so much easier to get one thing done (and do it well!) then to try to tackle a bunch of things at once (which usually results in them not being done well at all). Nicely done!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Linda, if I knew where to start, I would have these calendars printed up for sale. I'm just not clever enough to do it. Thank you as always my kindred spirit. You are appreciated greatly.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Tips, it's always good to see you. Thank you for the visit and I'm happy that you like these ideas. Big movements start with a single step, right?

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      I love it. These are all excellent ideas that can work well with nearly every life. If you will miss your Christmas lights, put them up from Christmas eve to New Years Day. It will still feel like Christmas, but maybe not for a full month.

    • mpropp profile image

      Melissa Propp 4 years ago from Minnesota

      I really like the frugal calendar idea! It doesn't seem quite so overwhelming this way...And thanks for planning ahead, because some of us procrastinators don't plan a year in advance. Also, thanks for making the "no tv" only a week! J/K

    • profile image

      irvinetraveller 4 years ago

      Thoreau must have noticed in his time the same basic human weakness which everyone wise enough can tackle and control. I really appreciate your campaign for frugal living.

    • JayeWisdom profile image

      Jaye Denman 4 years ago from Deep South, USA

      Hi, Bill....Great article! The calendar with monthly suggestions is a great way to present this information. Voted Up+++

      It's gratifying to know I'm already doing many of these things. I haven't bought any clothing in years. As a retiree, I live in jeans and tee shirts--short sleeves in hot weather, long sleeves in the short winter we have where I live--which are getting pretty faded, but will "do" for a while longer. When I need to dress up, I go "shopping" in my closet. When I was purchasing clothes for my career, I bought good quality. Some of them I've already sold at a consignment shop, but I kept enough to probably last me forever!

      I gave up TV years ago, too, though I do pay $8.99 per month for Netflix. I don't spend a lot of time (or use a lot of electricity) watching what it has to offer. I allow myself an occasional "fix" of British TV, using two or three evenings to watch an entire season of one of my favorites, then don't do it again for several weeks.)

      I can't do a few of your recommendations because of physical limitations (gardening, standing for long periods in a soup kitchen), but I try to make up for those in other ways.

      Anyone who wants to transfer your ideas to a "real" 2013 calendar for reminders can find a blank calendar online and type in the phrases of what to do (or not do) each month, then tape or paste it to cardboard and hang it some place it will be noticeable or place it on a desk.

      Jaye

    • tobusiness profile image

      Jo Alexis-Hagues 4 years ago from Bedfordshire, U.K

      Billy, the calendar is a brilliant idea. However, the frugal Christmas will take a bit of getting use to. :0.

      Hope you're having a frugal weekend. :))

    • Michele Travis profile image

      Michele Travis 4 years ago from U.S.A. Ohio

      This is a great hub. In fact I bookmarked it so I can print it out and then work on it next year. The only thing that might be a problem is turning the TV off for an entire week. My husband and I could probably do that, but our teenage daughter? Probably not. Anyway, I am going to print this out and turn it into a calendar.

      Voted up!

      Thanks!!!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Deb, I like the Christmas lights idea. Thanks for checking in!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Melissa, it was obvious I wasn't going to win that tv battle with most people. I thought I would try something a little bit easier. LOL Thank you and have a great weekend.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      irvine, thank you for your visit. I'm amazed that Thoreau was worried about this in 1840, a time that to us seems so simple. Little did he know!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Jo, I thought we'd start with baby steps and work our way up from that. :) Thank you and yes, I will have a frugal weekend. I don't have enough money to do anything else. :)

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Michele; I like that you are printing it out....I love to hear that. Yes, the tv thing is a bit tough on teenagers...maybe you could shoot for two days to start. :)

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Jaye, thank you for that suggestion about the blank calendar. I appreciate it. You seem to have the same movie habits as I do. I will not watch anything for weeks and then I'll go on a marathon and watch an entire season in a couple nights....then I've had my fix and I'm good for several more weeks.

      Short winter? Wow, I wonder what that is like? We'll never know here in Washington.

    • Bobski606 profile image

      Bobby 4 years ago from U.K

      This a great challenge for those starting out on the frugal lifestyle. Most of these things I am doing now: no tv, no christmas lights, a change jar, no dryer, no credit cards, I'm starting to make my own clothes, and I want to have a few vegetable pots. Let's see if I can add a few more things to our lifestyle next year.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Bobski, I am truly impressed. Look at how young you are! I love that you are doing all those things. Well done, and thank you for the visit.

    • profile image

      chrisinhawaii 4 years ago

      No TV for a whole month would be hard on some folks, especially with kids. But why not...

      Week 1 - no TV

      Week 2 - no video games

      Week 3 - no...um...OHmigod I almost said, "no Internet"...what was I thinking. Nevermind.

      I love the change jar. Whenever I have coins, I always put them in that little spot in my car door and deposit into our savings acct whenever I go to the bank.

      As for an actual jar, we tried that a year or two ago with the kids, but it didn't last because we never have any cash. Even now that our credit cards are all paid off, we still rarely handle cash.

      I don't think a "debit card jar" would have quite the same effect =)

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Chris, no, a debit card jar just won't work. A week without internet? Are you out of you mind? No way I'm doing that one. LOL

      Thank you my friend and Aloha!

    • RichardPac profile image

      RichardPac 4 years ago from Sunny Florida!

      Awesome tips! Each month seems like such a small challenge with obtainable goals. Month after month, the savings will start to really rack up!

    • donnah75 profile image

      Donna Hilbrandt 4 years ago from Upstate New York

      Great ideas that people can accomplish. I am working on being more frugal. Keep those suggestions coming :)

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Richard, that was my hope, to make them attainable goals. Thank you Sir!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Donnah, thank you! I've got a million of them so no worries about me running out. :)

    • always exploring profile image

      Ruby Jean Fuller 4 years ago from Southern Illinois

      There's nothing i enjoy more than shopping at Goodwell. I do plant a garden every year. Hanging my clothing on the line, i ' gotta think about. I rarely watch TV so that's cool. I love the idea of cooking one day for all week, my sis does that. I don't use a credit card so i'm good on that. Bill you should make up a calendar and put all of your ideas on it. It would sell. Thank you again. Your ideas are doable. Thank you..

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Ruby, listen to you...you are more frugal than you think you are. LOL I love it! If I had the money I would seriously consider the calendar idea. As always, short on funds. :) Thank you Ruby, and have a wonderful weekend.

    • bdegiulio profile image

      Bill De Giulio 4 years ago from Massachusetts

      Hi Bill. What a great idea. I really like some of these. I wonder how much the average person could save if they successfully completed all of these. It's amazing how much simpler life would be with just a few changes. Great job.

    • Ryem profile image

      Ryem 4 years ago from Maryland

      This calendar is very helpful. There are a lot of good ideas here. I'm gonna discipline myself and try a few out!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Ryem, I am very happy to hear that, and I appreciate you stopping by for a visit.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Bill, I don't know, but I would imagine it would be a sizable savings for sure. Thank you as always and have a great weekend my friend.

    • watergeek profile image

      watergeek 4 years ago

      Any chance the next calendar could be for apartment dwellers, billybuc? Some of these I've done already and many are not applicable, since I don't have a yard or balcony. Maybe I'll just give up and call myself already frugal, but it would be fun. I do need to give up some stuff.

    • Mhatter99 profile image

      Martin Kloess 4 years ago from San Francisco

      I wish I new how Arlene and I lived money free, so I could share it with you. Money just was. True, we were in demand, but the freebies... from 1995 till my new wife brought money back into my life. It is possible to live beyond money.

    • Life Iz Beautiful profile image

      Salini 4 years ago from India

      I loved your hub Billy. hmmm... gonna try few things from the calender and hoping like you have said ,"maybe, just maybe, they will become natural to you and you just might like them."

      Have a great day ahead voted useful...:)

    • phoenix2327 profile image

      Zulma Burgos-Dudgeon 4 years ago from United Kingdom

      Billybuc, this is an amazing calendar. Much better than what's on sale at the moment. These are clever and very doable suggestions. I'm sending this to my oldest daughter who has moved out and is starting to understand how little money goes these days. Hopefully, this will help her out.

      Thanks loads for posting this. Voted up, useful, awesome and shared.

    • Eiddwen profile image

      Eiddwen 4 years ago from Wales

      I was away from here for a whole day yesterday and wow do I have some catch up to do.However I have made myself a promise and that I would like to share ;this promise is not to get stressed if I have slipped behind in my reading because we can all relate to this and how silly are those thoughts that many will not read our hubs ever again if you don't keep up with reading. Deep breaths which relaxes one and here I go to another wonderful bright day keeping in touch with my hubfamily who are growing but every single member is so so important!!Sorry Billy I side tracked here;this hub of your s is amazing as always ;you may as well have been sitting by me side and sharing all your geat advice.I do actually live by nearly the same ideals as yourself but I have to admit that I would find it strange without the telly.I don't watch it in the day but we do at night.......!!

      I often have a chicken for Sunday and then make a soup(Welsh Cawl) with the carcass; and maybe rissoles with the left over meat.

      Another great hub Billy my dear friend and here's to many many more and remember those deep breaths before those fingers start tapping away at the keyboard.

      Here's to a wonderful December the first to you and Bev.

      Lots of love

      Eddy.

    • Wesman Todd Shaw profile image

      Wesman Todd Shaw 4 years ago from Kaufman, Texas

      Very nice!

      I must rebel, however, as my newfound love of cooking...is still a source of great joy to me!!!!! :)

    • Hyphenbird profile image

      Brenda Barnes 4 years ago from America-Broken But Still Beautiful

      This got my frugal bells ringing. I love to save money, resources and time. I will use your calendar and thank you for the great ideas.

    • girishpuri profile image

      Girish puri 4 years ago from NCR , INDIA

      Useful calender suggestions for the coming year, great thoughts behind saving precious money, resources and value time, thank you so much.

    • profile image

      Sunnie Day 4 years ago

      Good Morning Billy,

      This was one awesome hub with so many wonderful, valuable ideas. I am sharing this for sure. Frugality is something that will help every single person, including myself if we commit it to heart. I love the cooking one day a week idea..:)

      Thank you

      Sunnie

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Watergeek, I'll give that some thought and try to make the next one more apartment-friendly. Thanks for the suggestion.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Martin, I wish you could too; it would make a great hub! Thank you my friend!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Liz, Iz Beautiful indeed! I'm so glad you have become a follower; I love your outlook on life. Thank you and enjoy your weekend in India.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Phoenix, another visit from you! Very nice and greatly appreciated. I hope the calendar helps your daughter and thank you.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Eddy, you are reading my mind again. I have the same thoughts when I take a day off....what if the Hub community forgets about me. LOL Silly for sure, but still real thoughts. Insecurity? I don't know my friend. I do know I love this community of writers, and I miss them when I am gone for a day, and that is very special.

      Thank you my dear friend; I will read your hub shortly, and I wish for you a wonderful day.

      love,

      billy

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Wesman, I can certainly think of worse habits to form. LOL Cook away my friend, and have a great day in Texas.

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Hyphen, you have made my day. A writer's dream, to know that an idea spawns action. Thank you for the smile you gave me this morning.

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      girishpuri, you are very welcome, and thank you for taking the time to visit my humble site.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Sunnie, thank you, and I agree, frugality can never hurt anyone; we can all benefit from it.

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      Mark G Weller 4 years ago from Lake Charles, LA.

      Excellent tips Bill and a great way to make it easy to do!

      Mark

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Mark! I tried to dumb it down so it was easy for anyone to tackle.

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      Tammy 4 years ago from USA

      Great calander idea. I am passing this along to my family and friends. Many of these ideas my family already does. I grew up in a frugal household, so I always thought this was the natural way to live. It took me a long time to realize that not everyone lives how we did. One of the ways we save money is by making our gifts ourselves. Instead of going out to a movie, we rotate a movie night at each others house. It saves on movie tickets and the treats that go with them. Great job!

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Tip, I love the movie night idea, and making your own gifts. Good for you, and thank you!

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      Paula 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      Attn, ALL: THIS is the only calendar you will ever need. Create one for yourself, copy it for posting in every room of your home....follow it and BENEFIT!!.....BRAVO, bill....of course, you knew I would love this!....UP +++

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      Kathy Sima 4 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Bill, I love this idea of a different frugal challenge each month for a year - it's awesome! I was relieved to find I'm already doing some, but there's a few months where it will definitely be more challenging.

      Just wondering - do I get triple bonus points in May if we don't even have a microwave?

    • watergeek profile image

      watergeek 4 years ago

      What if we don't have a TV? Quadruple bonus?

    • novascotiamiss profile image

      novascotiamiss 4 years ago from Nova Scotia, Canada

      Billy: I really hope this amazing article will inspire many people to join the frugal movement. Unfortunately we are living in a consumer driven society where status is everything. I think the first hurdle one has to overcome is the embarrassment and instead to be proud of what your doing. We've had our TV switched off last February and were recently called cheapskates by a good friend, which was a bit hurtful. We've saved almost 500 $ this way and enjoy watching free movies borrowed from the library - with no commercials. We can watch these movies at our own leisure and our life is not dictated by the TV schedule.Being frugal has made us care more for the environment and we've become better people. Once people see the perks of going frugal they will never go back to their old life. Some may be scared that this is too extreme for them, but as you mention, if you do it in little steps, it will become an automatic part of your lifestyle.

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Paula, I had no doubt that you would like this; thanks for the resounding advertisement. :)

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Kathy, anyone who doesn't own a microwave is way ahead of the curve. Bravo! :) and thank you!

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Watergeek, we don't have a tv either, so you move to the head of the class. :) Thank you for the visit.

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Nova, thank you again for your visit. I haven't had a tv for six years and finally my friends have stopped acting like I should be in a mental institution. LOL I think with the economy the way it is, frugal living will be the new wave that people will turn to out of necessity.

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      Maria Jordan 4 years ago from Jeffersonville PA

      Bill,

      Your ideas are sensible, doable and not at all "traumatic". I thoroughly appreciate how you recognize everyone's differences, yet spell out a variety of strategies that everyone should consider.

      We are actively reigning in unnecessary food purchases and are loving how little waste is occurring. Comparative and sale shopping from weekly flyers and freezing are amazing savers, I agree.

      I love saving our change and feel calmer as I am wrapping coin. Actually simplicity in general makes me feel calmer...

      I will also look forward to your alternative calendars. I always learn something from your work. Voted UP and UABI. Hugs, Maria

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Maria, I love your comments. They are always so glowing, and I feel better about my work after you have weighed in. :) Thank you so much; the alternate calendar will come out next week so stay tuned.

      hugs and love,

      bill

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      Dianna Mendez 4 years ago

      I do a couple of these ideas already and will add a few more. Great suggestions to help others to live well and yet within budgets.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Dianna! I have no doubt you are heading in the right direction.

    • MelChi profile image

      Melanie Chisnall 4 years ago from Cape Town, South Africa

      This has got to be my favourite hub of the week, Bill! What fun ideas!! I absolutely love ALL of your ideas and will be trying out a few of them. I'm also bookmarking this so that when I do planning during mid December for next year, I can slot in some of your suggestions. Great job my friend. Really loved this and sharing all over!

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      Rachael Cleveland 4 years ago from Woodbridge, VA

      Love it! One of my goals is to embrace more of a frugal life. It's a little bit more difficult in suburbia (yech), but I have a dream of my own little mini-homestead replete with garden and a more hands-on world approach. I love your tips, and can't wait to try them! Another fantastic hub from you. :)

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      Marissa D. Carnahan 4 years ago from Nevada

      Really great hub!! I'm extremely new to hubpages but I am enjoying it so far. Great tips - can't wait to try some!

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Well thank you Mel! I don't know where this idea came from, but I'm glad I did it. Bev and I are thinking of doing an actual calendar to sell....we are going to work on it this afternoon.

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      rmcleve, I hope you realize your dream. We have the same dream and we are three years away from making it happen, all because of frugal living. Thank you!

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      ienjoythis, thank you so much, and welcome to HubPages.

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image

      Glimmer Twin Fan 4 years ago

      What a great idea for keeping on frugal track! Just write these ideas on the wall calendar and you are good to go. I like no tv for a week....may have to try that every month, but my daughter probably won't go for it.

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Glimmer, it's a bit tough getting teenagers to sign on for that no tv idea....but worth a try. Who knows, she might actually enjoy it....but probably not. LOL

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      Shauna L Bowling 4 years ago from Central Florida

      Bill, I am going to keep this hub on my desktop as a reference. You have such a good way of determining needs from wants. Our society has lost sight of needs, such as love, communication, sharing, listening because wants have taken control. Thank you my beloved friend for bringing heart and soul back into the lives of those who have lost sight.

      Merry Christmas and Happy Every Day, my friend!

      Lots of Love,

      Sha

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Sha, you are a doll and I thank you. Bev and I will occasionally butt heads over the needs vs wants issue. :) My definition of needs is a little more narrow than hers. LOL

      Love coming your way my dear, and may the holidays be filled with happiness and wonder.

      bill

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      Shauna L Bowling 4 years ago from Central Florida

      We will be in touch throughout the season, my friend. ILYAB!

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Sha, you can bet on it. :)

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      Connie Smith 4 years ago from Southern Tier New York State

      Oh Billy, you did yourself proud with this one. Every one an excellent idea. You know, it's too bad we don't have people like Thoreau in Washington--things could be so much better! There's nothing like the smell of freshly windblown, sun-dried sheets. I totally agree that credit card debt is ruining this country; and it is amazing how much loose change accumulates. I deposit a tidy sum into my 'Disneyland Here I Come' fund every month! Hey, why not earn a reward for living frugally!

      Super article as always. Voted Up +

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Pearl, I love it...Disneyland...what better reward for living frugally? Thoreau might turn violent if he were to be in D.C. right now, and that would be a sad thing for a man of peace. :) Thank you Pearl!

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      Genna East 4 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

      I love this, Billy, and I’ve bookmarked it, accordingly. What interesting ideas. :-) I adore thrift stores and consignment shops, but we don’t have many around here any more, unfortunately.

      Wonderful hub!

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Genna, it's nice to see you again. Thank you, and if any of these ideas come in handy then great! Have a wonderful weekend my friend.

    • ishwaryaa22 profile image

      Ishwaryaa Dhandapani 4 years ago from Chennai, India

      A superb guide with helpful suggestions! I agree with your wise views on rising materialism in this world. As per my observations, people spend excessively in order to boost their social status or outdo their friends and relatives which is indeed upsetting!

      I would follow some of your suggestions. There are few that I already followed such as buying cheap food products, drying clothes outside and creating handmade gifts. Still, I wanted to follow your suggestions for a better and frugal living. Way to go!

      Thanks for SHARING. Useful, Awesome & Interesting. Voted up & shared

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      vespawoolf 4 years ago from Peru, South America

      These are great ideas and I like your suggestion of taking baby steps for those who aren't used to living simply. There's a big difference between needs and wants, that's for sure. Living away from the U.S. makes it much easier for us since we aren't exposed to all the advertising.

      I buy produce in season from the local market and on the rare day I step into a grocery store, buy what's on sale. We boil roasted chicken carcasses and use the broth to make chicken tortilla soup or chicken noodle. We have a large clothing fair where we get used clothing from other countries. If you're willing to dig through piles, you can even find new items (I suppose left over from last season) for just 35 cents!

      I always feel good when I can save money that way and wisely manage our resources. The one thing we spend a lot of money on is running the clothes dryer, but since we live in a dusty desert we haven't had success with hanging out clothes to dry. I've thought about stringing a clothes line across the living room, though. : ) Thanks so much for another great addition in this series.

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Ishwaryaa, my dear young friend, thank you! You are so gifted, and I look forward to knowing you better in the future. We have great things ahead of us; of that I am certain.

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Vespa, that had me laughing. I can just see the clothesline across the living room. LOL Thank you my friend; I really appreciate you taking the time to comment. I hope you have a wonderful holiday season.

    • Kathryn Stratford profile image

      Kathryn 4 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

      More great tips for frugal living! I love it. This list makes me happy, because many things I already do. Sometimes progress isn't noticed until you read things like this. It's easy to forget how things used to be.

      Not only do I not charge things on a credit card, but I don't have one (and haven't for a good 10 years, ever since I overspent, and had the added stress of debt over my head for years). I don't miss it. I'd imagine it's good to have something to fall back on, but I generally don't buy anything unless I have enough money for it. It was a long, terrible lesson for me, but I learned from it.

      I absolutely love budgeting, and I am usually pretty good at it. Although once in a while I do not follow it, so I can certainly work on it. I will work on adding money to savings as soon as I start my new job. It feels great when the savings account gets bigger. It is a feeling of great security.

      As for change, we recently saved ours for a few months, without touching it, and were amazed at how much change adds up! And when we cash it, we use a machine at our credit union, which is FREE. The Coinstar is better than nothing, but is a rip-off, costing around 10% of what you saved up.

      I can't have yard sales right now, but i the past I have used it to make money and cut back on "things", and it worked well! There's nothing like letting other people enjoy things that you don't need. I have also donated things to Goodwill, or some other cause. It's a good way to get rid of stuff that could find a happier home elsewhere.

      I intentionally only have the lights on when I use them, and instead of using the overhead lights, I usually use my desk lamp or the smaller lamp in our living room. I like task lighting, and we have energy efficient bulbs. I do like light, but I don't need ones that make me feel like the sun is shining directly on me all of the time!

      One more thing. Your tip on cooking is something I have thought of turning into a hub project. I want to make a basic meal, and turn the leftovers into a different meal every day. It will be a fun project. For me, many times one meal turns into the base of one or two meals. I always use leftovers up, because I don't like wasting food. Hmmm, I may start that project this week!

      Okay, that was pretty long. But only because this is a subject I can identify with, although one I still need to improve upon.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Kathryn, it was a long comment, but that makes me happy because I know that my article created some thoughts to ponder. I won't comment on all that you mentioned. It's obvious you understand this frugal living thing. As for the series of articles about leftovers, I think it is a great idea and one many people would be interested in. I hope you do it my friend.

      Have a great week and thank you!

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