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February 2011 - Posts - The Dollar Stretcher Review
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The Dollar Stretcher Review

My take on articles and ideas presented on Dollar Stretcher.

February 2011 - Posts

  • Counting Pennies

    I am that funny old lady who stops and bends over to pick up a penny from the sidewalk. I've also been known to walk over to pick up squashed pop cans from parking lots. Pennies add up to dollars and what's wrong with an extra dollar here and there?  Maybe it's because I enjoy dealing with the small things, but this is the way I think.

    It's small wonder that my favorite article of the week is Every Penny Counts

    Actually doing the math (as Scott Bilker did here) shows without a doubt that a penny really does count whether it's earned, saved or spent. Adding a penny or two when we can, makes a difference and how many times are you so broke that you can't add a penny?

     


    Posted Feb 21 2011, 09:28 AM by Pat with 1 comment(s)
    Filed under: ,
  • Cloth Diapers

     Ok, it's been a long time since my babies were in diapers, but...wow. Do people really spend a hundred dollars a month on disposable diapers??  Really? That's what Jennifer S.figures in her article "$1,000  in Diaper Savings." That's a lot of money to throw into the garbage. 

    I could go off on a tale of "when my kids were babies..." and tell you how I used cloth diapers on all three of them, and I could tell you how much cheaper it is to wash diapers than to buy them and I could tell you what awful rashes my son had when I used disposables for a short while... but I won't. I'm still reeling at the cost of disposables. A hundred dollars a month.

    With the present economy, jobs still being lost, things still not stable, many families without emergency savings or retirement funds, prices on essentials going up and up, it might be time to rethink some common practices and I don't mean just disposable diapering, but take that into consideration, too. What would you do with a hundred dollars a month? 

     

     

  • Organic Food

     "Organic" and "cheap" sound like complete opposites, don't they? If you've ever compared the price of a half gallon of organic milk to a half gallon of "regular" milk, you know what I mean. Organic is expensive!

    Or is it?

    There is that deferred cost called health care that adds to the cost of cheap "regular" food. There is also the cost to the environment, as many foods deplete the land and add chemicals.

    All that aside, it's not always easy to pay twice the price for good food. You may not have to, though, if you follow the advice here: Cheap Organic Foods. 

    As usual, I just have to add  my two cents' worth.  

    Growing your own is a great idea, but not everyone can grow enough of their own because of lack of space. If that's you, look around for a vacant lot and then see if you can use it for your organic garden. This might be a huge job for one person, but getting a few friends together can make it a wonderful experience. 

    In addition to that, look for organic food coupons. There are some very good ones, especially for dairy products and fresh vegetables. One site that lists many coupons for organic products is well named: Organic Food Coupons. Besides that site, go to each organic food brand and look for coupons.

    Natural food stores have sales just like other grocery stores, so watch for them and stock up when you can. 

    Use the same tactics with organic food that you know from other shopping: Use coupons, shop the sales, buy in bulk, avoid the junk food. (Oh, yes, there is organic junk food!) 

    Organically grown food has been shown to have more nutrients than "traditionally" grown food. This in itself should be enough to encourage you to do what you can to make sure the food you eat is safe and healthy for you and your family. 

  • Use and Reuse Jars and Containers

     I thoroughly enjoy most of Dollar Stretcher's articles, probably because I can relate to most of them.

    This one is special, though. You see, it's about reusing jars and containers and... well, you should see my cabinets. Or maybe you shouldn't. They're crammed full of mayonnaise jars and pickle jars and cottage cheese containers. I even saved the bottle that juice came in one time because it was a nice shape and sturdy plastic.

    There, now. I've confessed. I did leave out one little fact, though. My cabinets are more stuffed at certain times of the year than others.

    Why? Well, it's because I slowly use up the supplies I put by last summer and fall. The empty containers go in the cabinet to wait until next harvest. By late spring the cabinets will be overflowing and I'll be more than ready to fill them up again and put them back in their places in the pantry.

    There are other things, of course, like the grated Parmesan cheese containers mentioned in the article, but they're in the pantry all the time. I use a large spice jar with shaker lid to store baking soda under the sink. Not only does it keep odors down, it's handy for cleaning the sink.

    This reminds me of when the question of using plastic grocery bags instead of the ones that come in boxes, came up. Why on earth would you buy something that you already have? If you just have to have it in a box, get a box and put some in it. And if you just have to have containers that all look alike, only save the ones that look alike.

    It makes sense to me

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