Frugalizing Your Family

37 Easy, Painless Ways to Trim Your Budget in Tough Economic Times

Living more frugally doesn't have to mean giving up indulgences entirely. Earmark a small amount of money each month for more pricey treats, such as dinner out or the occasional cup of gourmet coffee.

By Susan Flynn

Dressing up like a bean burrito to save $6.50 on dinner at a local restaurant may not be for everyone. But for Angela Eckel, a mom on a mission to save her family money, such a deal is too hard to resist.

"It's not even embarrassing once you get there," says Eckel, laughing about the restaurant promotion. "You don't even have to cover yourself from head to toe."

Her philosophy for frugal living? Be creative and consistent.

Writing mom Katrina Andrews also embraces a frugal way of life. She clips coupons, swaps kids' clothes with friends and returns to Target for an adjustment if an item goes on sale after she bought it.

"I don't feel embarrassed," she says. "It takes two minutes and you get a few dollars back. We're paying $3.13 a gallon for gas, so I think we need to cut corners wherever we can."

With the cost of gasoline, home heating oil and groceries on a steady rise, many families feel strapped by the painful reality that their money doesn't go as far as it used to. The solution doesn't have to mean ringing up credit card debt, working more hours or even masquerading as Mexican food.

There are many easy, relatively painless ways to trim the family budget to net significant savings at the end of the month. Here's how to cut back on some of the most routine expenditures...

Browse the following pages to find 37 easy and painless ways to frugalize your family!


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