Frugal Living

Time + Money Management: We Have a Choice

posted by Andrea | 06/7/2018 | 60 comments

Over the years, I cannot tell you how many times I’ve heard someone say “I can’t afford that” or “I don’t have time for that”… and I guess it just bothers me that so many people seem to have such a “defeatist” attitude towards their lack of time and money.

The reason it bothers me is because I personally feel that in almost every situation, we have a choice as to how we will spend our time and our money… I’d love to know if you agree with me or not (and why!)

How Food Prep Positively Impacts Almost Every Aspect Of My Life

posted by Andrea | 05/29/2018 | 21 comments

I’ve always known food prep was an important piece of the puzzle for my simplified, organized lifestyle; however, it really hasn’t been until the last 9 months of my life that I truly started to realize just how much my entire life “falls apart” when I slack on food prep. 

This knowledge is more than enough for me to continue my not-so-loved task of food prep… as you’ll read in today’s post, it really does positively impact almost every area of my life!

Frugal Summer Fun For Younger Children

posted by Andrea | 05/22/2018 | 20 comments

Summer break sort of snuck up on me this year… and while I’m excited to have everyone home all day again, I also realize our schedule and routine will look very different.

I’m trying to prepare by having lots of different fun activities for us to do as a family — many of which are completely free (or very frugal). I’m sharing so many of our favorite frugal summer fun ideas in today’s post!

Our Mini No-Spending Challenge

posted by Andrea | 03/30/2018 | 14 comments

Five years ago, I shared the self-inflicted no-spending challenge Dave and I did during the month of May. It was a great experience for us, and we learned a lot!

Since our first no-spending challenge back in 2013, Dave and I have done several smaller no-spending challenges — most recently, a no-spending challenge for fast food and restaurants (which is what I’m sharing more about today!)

Reader Question: How Do You Handle Kids and Money?

posted by Andrea | 03/15/2018 | 38 comments

Kids + money has been a hot topic in the Dekker house these past few weeks, so I thought it would be the perfect time to share a recent Reader Question I got regarding how we handle kids and money!

Since our children are still so young, I definitely don’t feel like I have all the answers — so I’d love it if those of you with more experience in this area of parenting would enlighten us all in the comments!

My Crazy ‘Should I Buy This?’ Decision Process

posted by Andrea | 03/13/2018 | 10 comments

As many of you know, I try to be mindful about what I bring into my home — thankfully, I’m not a big shopper, so it’s relatively easy for me to resist impulse purchases!

However, when I DO purchase something, I mentally think through several questions before bringing the item home. Today I’m sharing those questions, and how they help me resist extra clutter in my home!

How We Recently Saved Almost $100 on Insurance in About 5 Minutes

posted by Andrea | 03/9/2018 | 13 comments

Two years ago, I shared 9 tips to save on insurance (home, auto, medical, dental, life, etc.) and I believe those tips are all still very relevant today. 

However, after a recent email conversation with our home/auto insurance company, I thought it was worth reiterating how ridiculously easy it can be to save money on insurance… simply by asking a few questions every now and then. 

You’ll Never Guess Our Largest Monthly Expense!

posted by Andrea | 02/12/2018 | 39 comments

I’ll be honest, I haven’t been overly aware of how much we’re spending in what categories over the past 6 months (I blame it on baby #4 arriving 5 months ago!)

However, curiosity got the best of me last month, so I quickly opened our Finance Tracking Workbooks for the last several years… and I was totally shocked at what I found! 

9 Reasons We Use Credit Cards to Simplify our Lives

posted by Andrea | 01/25/2018 | 116 comments

I’ve had a credit card since I was 16 — and Dave and I use credit cards to pay for almost everything we buy.

I definitely don’t think that credit cards are the best financial decision for everyone — and at the same time, I don’t think a cash-only budget is the best financial decision for everyone. That said, here are just a few of the ways credit cards majorly simplify and organize my life.

How I Clean our Secondhand Treasures

posted by Andrea | 01/22/2018 | 17 comments

It’s no secret that we LOVE buying used and secondhand items whenever we can. Of course, buying used items means I will need to thoroughly wash everything before we use it!

If you’re new to buying thrift store items or if you’re interested in how exactly I clean our thrift store finds, I will hopefully cover most items in this post!

Because 40% Off Is Still 60% More Than Not Buying It In The First Place!

posted by Andrea | 01/15/2018 | 11 comments

Although I generally dislike shopping, I often find it difficult to pass up a bargain — especially at thrift stores , online, or if I get freebie coupons.

Today I’m sharing a couple recent stories about how I (almost) got sucked into using a coupon just because it was a great deal… tell me I’m not the only one with this problem 🙂

How to Clean Up Battery Corrosion

posted by Andrea | 12/19/2017 | 16 comments

I can’t even begin to add up how much money I’ve saved buying used toys, electronics, games, and other battery-powered items over the years — especially once I learned how to quickly clean up battery corrosion!

If you use batteries, you’ll want to read today’s post!!  

Increase Your Saving and Investment Potential With Automatic Deposits

posted by Andrea | 12/13/2017 | 24 comments

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again — automating our savings and investments has been one of the most important reasons we’ve been able to stick with our lofty financial goals for the past 11+ years.

As we approach another New Year with new goals, I’d encourage you to set up a monthly auto-deposit into a specific savings or investment account. Then commit to leaving that money untouched for as long as you possibly can!!

How I Organize and Keep Track of My Digital Receipts

posted by Andrea | 12/4/2017 | 21 comments

If you do the majority of your shopping online like I do, you probably get what feels like 10 million emails regarding your various online purchases — when the orders are places, when they are processed, when the products are shipped, when the orders are delivered, etc. etc. etc. 

It can feel overwhelming if you don’t have a system. Thankfully, you do NOT need a fancy system to track your digital receipts — I’m sharing my super simple system today!

The Saving Power of Waiting 24 Hours

posted by Andrea | 11/16/2017 | 32 comments

We’re quickly approaching the time of year when there are so many sales and “great deals” that it’s often easy to make quick decisions and impulse purchases we might later regret.

If you’re hoping to avoid extra impulse purchases this year, today’s tip might help you do just that!

Clara’s Birth Announcements

posted by Andrea | 11/9/2017 | 19 comments

In the age of social media, I definitely don’t think it’s necessary to send out an official birth announcement — however, I personally like sending them out and I know some of our non-techy relatives enjoy getting them in the mail!

Today, I’m sharing Clara’s birth announcement — as well as how I made them myself for a bargain!

My Super Simple, Super Frugal, Quick Fix for Faulty Technology

posted by Andrea | 11/8/2017 | 26 comments

Over the years, I have learned one super simple, super frugal, quick fix for faulty technology that has worked over and over and over again for me…

It might not work for every tech issue you encounter — but considering it’s completely free, super easy to do, and only takes a few seconds, it’s probably worth a shot the next time you experience an issue with your technology!

My Favorite Dollar Store Buys

posted by Andrea | 08/28/2017 | 30 comments

Not everything at the dollar store is necessarily a great bargain, but there are definitely some amazing deals if you’re willing to browse!

Since we love our local dollar store so much, I thought it might be fun to share some of OUR favorite items to buy on our monthly walks to the dollar store.