Thursday, January 15, 2009

Facing Down The Final Frontier

We all have final frontiers in our frugality - that line we've thought about crossing but haven't yet taken the plunge. Maybe it's baking bread from scratch or switching from paper towels to a cloth alternative. But whatever your frugal final frontier is, I challenge you to give it a trial run and then decide if you're ready, once and for all, to take that leap.

I know for our family, there are quite a few final frontiers we haven't crossed yet. For example, I have yet to try making our own laundry detergent. I really want to and there is no real excuse why I haven't yet. That is the challenge I am going to undertake the next time we run out of detergent.

I think when it comes to these individual final frontiers we all have, an open mind and a willing attitude is very important. Baby steps are also important. I know baby steps always helped me in the past. But once I developed an "I'll just give it a shot" attitude, things became much easier.

I started testing this method by not instantly adding things to our grocery list. When we ran out of barbecue sauce, I thought I'd try making my own. If we didn't like it, then I would add it to the list. The same can be said of making homemade tortillas and crackers. The tortillas flopped initially, so they got added back on the list. Then I kept trying and I'm now at the point where tortillas are never purchased from the store.

So, I'll try out homemade laundry soap next time. I'll either stick with it or not. The important thing is that I'll try. And after that, I'll look for the next final frontier, because I'm sure there's always a next.

What is your frugal final frontier and what keeps you from making that leap?

Stop by Crystal's blog for more Frugal Friday.

8 comments:

Jessica 11:04 PM  

Great post. I am going through the same thing. I am trying to save money by cutting things off of my grocery list. Last night I made homemade onion rings instead of buying them. I wanted to make them healthy so I dipped them in some milk and then into seasoned bread crumbs and sprinkled with salt and pepper. Then I sprayed them with PAM and baked them. They weren't perfect but they were cheap, healthy, easy and everyone liked them.

creative gal 12:44 AM  

Thanks for such a great post!

missourimom,  9:10 AM  

I made laundry detergent for the first time 2 weeks ago. The great thing about it, other than the price, is that it makes enough for several months. It doesn't make bubbles like regular detergent, but it cleans great. I also added some essential oils for fragrance. I used the duggar family recipe because I wanted the gel kind, I was told the powder doesn't disolve as well. Good luck!
http://www.duggarfamily.com/recipes.html

Stephanie from Texas,  10:53 AM  

i made the laundry soap leap 6 months ago. i love it! i have been entertaing the idea of sewing some reusable pads to replace the cotton squares i use twice daily. i got the idea from another blog i read. she cut some soft fabric diapers in squares and sewed them to double thickness. i thought it was a great idea. i just need to get the diapers or suitable cloth!

Niki 3:46 PM  

I love making detergent. Success really depends on water quality. Same goes with dishwasher detergent (which I make as well) I still have some small steps I have to make, but I keep telling myself, one step at a time.

Ira 11:06 AM  

A low cost, green eco friendly, healthy natural way to do laundry is to put 3 or 4 soapberries in the laundry. They grow on the Chinaberry tree and have been used for thousands of years. They work very effectively.

Mary 1:12 PM  

We started small by cutting out Starbucks and Snapple last winter. Kicked it up a notch in the spring by cutting all bottled beverages and using a Britta filter. This summer we started removing packaged goods and shopping more at the local farmer's market. This month we cut seasoning packets. I have developed my own recipes for chili, roasts, soups and more. We still have quite a way to go, but have enjoyed the process. Thanks for a great post!

Erica 12:15 AM  

I think this is a great idea, but sometimes it cost me more to make things on my own, at least initially, because I don't already have everything or because I can buy it really cheap if I want! Like I often buy Sun laundry detergent which is pretty cheap! I really need to get a water filter though as we spend way too much on water!

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