I have been researching ways to cut back and save some extra money. I have read a lot of very interesting blogs regarding couponing and getting great deals at the supermarket. This is fantastic, but unfortunately they don't coupon fresh fruits and veggies. While I think it is great that I can use a coupon, double it on a product already on sale making it practically free. I am just not willing to substitute twinkies for apples for my family. In the long run is it really a bargain? What about the effect to their health by switching from freshness to processed just because I got a great deal. This is one area where I am willing to spend more and I think it is worth it. Even though I love a good bargain, that should not be your ultimate goal when it comes to feeding your family.
What about non-food items? I have learned the hard way that a deal is only a deal if it something you truly need. There have been many times that I have bought a top or shoes because it was on clearance and thought wow I saved a lot of money. But, that top or pair of shoes stayed in my closet with the tags still on them before I finally caved and donated. So, that item was not a deal. I was actually out the money I spent on it because I got caught up in the bargain of the item and didn't think, is this really something I need or even want. I was seduced by the sale price. Being frugal is not about buying as many things as you can as cheaply as possible, it is not about getting a lot of stuff at low prices. Its about consuming less and consuming more intelligently. If you apply this mind set, this is how you will save. I recently read an article that had a great passage "Our relentless effort as a culture to obtain as much as we can as cheaply as we can has cheapened our lives and made Wal-Mart the largest and most profitable business in the world."
Did you know that Americans spend nearly seven times as much time shopping as they do playing with their kids? Next week-end focus on spending time with your kids, ask them what they want to do. Play a game with them, whatever it is just enjoy their company. Both you and your families lives will be the better for it. Stop wasting your time in the mall....and wasting your money!