I had an interesting conversation today with a fellow blogger oh her post, which led to this post. I have spent more than I should on things I don’t care that much about but I’ve cinched the mouth of my money purse pretty tight since. Remember my public breakup with the gorgeously well-endowed shopping site? Even though I still haven’t unsubscribed from the mailing list (everyone likes to keep tabs on their exes), I haven’t relapsed, I swear! Not even in the face of 50% off on my favourite brands.
I did buy a few necessary things in the last month though, this keyboard I am typing on, a membership for an exclusive travel club (details in a later post), and two swimsuits. Yes, because I really needed them, no joke. And I got them at super steal prices on Amazon, the package will reach me on the glorious 23rd of this month. I got this one and this one – see if you like any they have on offer.
The thing is, when we stop splurging on the latest trend and evaluate our consumerism-driven lives, we can save more money. Why? Travel, nothing more to be said. I thought I’d share some of my saving methods, maybe they can be incorporated into your life too:
Coffee: Make your own. I don’t know (and don’t care) who’s responsible for the notion that any coffee worth having comes in a certain type of cup – they lie! I for one, prefer a handmade cup of coffee over a chokingly sweet caramel crappiato.
Body scrubs: The pretty packaging on the shelves is attractive for sure, but people have been exfoliating long before brands decided to cash in on them. A homemade scrub is as simple as some salt and/or granulated sugar along with an oil of your choice, and some drops of an essential oil you like the smell of. You can do without the latter, just zest a lemon or orange, add some great smelling herbs, mix and use. You can also use coffee grounds instead of sugar or salt.
- Believe Jamie: Jamie Oliver that is. He isn’t lying when he says 15 minute meals are possible, especially if you live in a country where you get chopped veggies and the like at the grocer’s. Even if not, it is possible. I wouldn’t consider half an hour of my time too high a price to pay to eat a freshly cooked hot meal. Soups, pastas, stirfries, even curries can be whipped up in under half an hour. Make extra of your favourite sauce or gravy in the case of curries and freeze in an ice cube tray. This ensures a piping hot meal is that much closer to your mouth.
- Creative gifts: I have been giving people handmade cards and personalized gifts since I can remember. For me personally, it is highly satisfying to know that I have taken great care to gift someone something meaningful. It is also the best indication of how much someone means to me. The more they mean to me, the more the efort that went into picking, personalizing and making the gift.
- DIY: Inexpensive purchases such as a ball of yarn, some jute string or glitter can breathe life into those mason jars you have lying around, and you too can flaunt your DIY skills proudly when you next have guests over. It isn’t limited to mason jars, Pinterest the world is your oyster.
- Clothes: In a time where people are obsessed with designer labels, this can seem a weird thing to do. If you have the money to splurge, go ahead but I’d rather spend my money on more enduring things like the experience of travel. I’m no expert and yet, I have a handful of wearable clothing items that I’ve put together from scratch.
- Workout at home: There’s no need to go to a gym to stay fit. There are so many videos online that you can download, and mix and match, according to your mood. I for one have never had a gym membership, and though not at my target fitness, I’m getting there day by day, from the comfort of my own home. Try Blogilates, she is an awesome motivator. I also do Shaun T workouts.
Skip movies: I have only watched one movie in the last year at the cinema. I don’t find the need to when these movies sooner or later find their way to the television screen in my house. And it doesn’t matter that everyone else already knows the story, you weren’t the first one to read The Alchemist were you, and you still enjoyed it.
Haircut: This might seem like the funniest thing but as of November ’14, I’ve cut my own hair. I went and got an A-line bob back then, and chopped off long, long curly locks. And in growing out the bob, I kept cutting my own hair after looking up this video. And while it prevents my hair from growing back super fast, and gets rid of any splits I may have, it’s way easier on the pocket too!
Were any of these tips helpful to you? Do you think it’s the small things that add up to huge expenses? What do you do to add to your travel fund?