Help to Make Ends Meet
These days, online browsing turns up an abundance of websites and blogs showing people how to make the most of what they have, rather than bemoan what they had. Some examples are Dollar Stretcher at Stretcher.com, AllThingsFrugal.com and FrugalMom.net. Tips range from refinancing a mortgage to gas and grocery shopping to frugal fashion. Many are based on good old common sense—backyard gardening, line-drying laundry, clipping coupons and borrowing movies from the library. But, original new ideas can surprise even veteran budgeters—such as swapping clothes and furniture, as well as DVDs. Local frugal living groups, too, are growing in popularity.
“I recently heard a phrase: ‘Never waste a crisis,’” says Kellee Sikes, of Kirkwood, Missouri, who was interviewed for a New York Times story about the trend. She now uses organic cloth napkins until they get threadbare, become cleaning rags, and then end up in a composter. “I love it,” she adds. “This is a chance for us to reexamine what’s important.”