Being frugal is a family affair at my place. My kids help with making things that help us cut costs like this cleaner, pancake mix, and applesauce from the five bushels of apples that we pick in the fall in addition to clipping coupons, tolerating “well worn” things that we just don’t feel like replacing, and riding their bikes places so we can save on gas.
This year we are even tolerating sitting on couches with holes in them. Literally. At this point, nursing school is about the only “extra” we can afford, which means we will continue to tolerate couches with holes in them. It would be really nice to have new ones, but since we choose to only pay cash for things buying them on credit isn’t an option, either.
It makes me laugh when even my youngest kids correct a sibling who whines about not having a particular cereal by reminding them that we only buy things that are on sale. Most times, my kids ask about when something will be on sale rather than asking, “When can we get…?” It’s interesting to see that shift in perspective.
Most of my kids’ clothes are not new, which they are fine with, but they really appreciate when they do get new things, too. We are blessed to have friends and family members pass on clothes to our children, which means when we get a bag of clothes from someone it is like Christmas!
When my kids have fundraising opportunities for the activities they are a part of, they know they are to work hard selling in order to help offset costs. This has taught them the value of working hard and also helped them realize that every little thing adds up.
As they get to be around 10, they start looking for jobs out in the neighborhood whether they are shoveling snow, raking leaves, or babysitting. Again, this has provided them with the opportunity to establish a strong work ethic.
Living frugally has taught my kids how to appreciate things, how to be mindful of everything from how much syrup they use to turning lights off when they are done with them. Although we are frugal out of necessity, I am glad that my kids have learned these skills to take with them throughout their own lives as adults.
If you live frugally, is your whole family on board?
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