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Corn Cob Living

Last post Tue, Apr 22 2014 11:00 AM by Tinamarie. 366 replies.
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  • Wed, Mar 28 2007 1:00 PM

    • Brandy
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    Inflation fighter [IF] Corn Cob Living

    A long time ago in a galaxy far far away...err make that about eight years ago on another message board, I encountered a discussion that remains with me today. I never discovered if the poster was serious or not but he suggested that if someone was really frugal then they would go to extremes. One of the extreme tips he thought others might want to try was ahh replacing toilet paper with corn cobs.

     
    And that was just a bit too frugal for me! It made me stop and think about what frugality meant to me, how far I was willing to go. I have a quirky sense of humor for those who have not had the benefit of being shocked by it yet...I have tagged the extremes in frugality as corn cob mentality or corn cob living.

    It's a humorous way to look at frugality and a funny little name. We may see each other's extreme measures in the same light as some of us saw that tip to replace toilet paper....just too weird to do. But the truth is most of us have a "corn cob" or extreme activity in our efforts to live on less. There is nothing wrong with going above and beyond what might be considered the "norm" as long as we are content with that choice. 

     So what are the corn cobs in your life or are you a hard core corn cobber?

     

     

     

     

     


     

    The Dollar Stretcher Community Manager



  • Wed, Mar 28 2007 1:19 PM In reply to

    • Brandy
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    Re: Corn Cob Living

    I think to others around me there is a lot I do that they would call corn cobs but those who live naturally or frugally may think is everyday stuff. So here are my extreme things:

    •  I have cloth diapered, cloth wiped and made my own baby bath products
    • I make my own bath and body products...my latest is using baking soda to wash my hair
    • I make my own cleaners and household items..I am currently planning to try my hand at candle and soap making
    • I have used and finally am using cloth table napkins again
    • I homeschool on a very small amount of money
    • I want chickens for the fresh eggs and I may consider for eating
    • I am collecting wooden pallets to build things for the yard 


     

     
     

    The Dollar Stretcher Community Manager



  • Wed, Mar 28 2007 1:46 PM In reply to

    • Pat
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    • Joined on Tue, Mar 6 2007
    • Colorado
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    Re: Corn Cob Living

    I like the term "Corn Cob Living." Hard core corn cobber, though... LOL

    I've done most of your list, but maybe I shouldn't tell about my tea bag string stash. (I do have a purpose in mind. Really!) One day I got to thinking about all the little things I throw out, so that's where it started.

    Does that qualify as corn cob living? Smile
     

     
     

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  • Wed, Mar 28 2007 1:54 PM In reply to

    • Brandy
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    Re: Corn Cob Living

    What can you possibly do with tea bag strings, I am at a loss on figuring that one out.

     

     

    The Dollar Stretcher Community Manager



  • Wed, Mar 28 2007 2:14 PM In reply to

    Re: Corn Cob Living

    Wow, I thought the corn cob things was just a myth LOL....

     

    But I have done everything on your list except cloth napkins. Right now we are having septic "issues"due to my automatic washer so I have had to reduce the wash load as much as possible. I'm considering a wringer washer in the near future. I may change to cloth "things"then....  ; )

    Michelle in Northern Michigan

    "Those who would surrender liberty for security deserve neither" - Ben Franklin

  • Wed, Mar 28 2007 2:22 PM In reply to

    • Brandy
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    Re: Corn Cob Living

    I am sorry to hear that you are having septic issues.

     I have actually washed by hand in the past with a scrub board and tub. I forgot to add that to my list of corn cobs, LOL! It wasn't easy and my husband thinks I am nuts for wanting to do some of it that way in future.

     

     

     


     

    The Dollar Stretcher Community Manager



  • Wed, Mar 28 2007 2:40 PM In reply to

    Re: Re: Corn Cob Living

    I forgot there was life even before a wringer washer! Why didn't I think of a scrub board? how simple. I don't know if i could do everything that way, but it would sure help now that the weather is nice!

    Problem is, the elderly couple that owned this house before us lived by themselves and had a wringer washer. The septic field that's here can't handle the enormous amount of water that gets ejected from just 1 load of wash, let alone what it takes for a family of four! So dh is looking into frugal ways of diverting the wash water into another drain field. Still it looks like about $450. And the transmission went out on my van at 100K. So it may be put on the back burner for awhile.

     

    Any suggestions how to use a wash tub and board? Aren't most of the scrub boards you see now considered aniques with a price to match?

    Michelle in Northern Michigan

    "Those who would surrender liberty for security deserve neither" - Ben Franklin

  • Wed, Mar 28 2007 3:11 PM In reply to

    • Pat
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    • Joined on Tue, Mar 6 2007
    • Colorado
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    Re: Corn Cob Living

    Brandy:

    What can you possibly do with tea bag strings, I am at a loss on figuring that one out.

    Why, I'm going to knit them together to replace the corn cobs, what else!? Wink

    More seriously, if I tie them all together, I'll have a long string I can use to tie things up.

    Ok, real seriously. (ignore the grammar) I'm going to use a piece of curly plastic that I came across and tie the strings, one by one, onto it to create a big, funky caterpillar to dress up a potted plant.

    Hmm. That still sounds corn cobbish, doesn't it? 

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  • Wed, Mar 28 2007 3:34 PM In reply to

    • Brandy
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    Re: Re: Corn Cob Living

    Washboards are still made and sold today:

    http://www.lehmans.com/shopping/product/detailmain.jsp?itemID=115&itemType=PRODUCT&iProductID=115

    My hand "washing machine" consisted of a washtub, a washboard and a toilet plunger bought and used only for this. I am sad to say my "washing machine" broke and I put off repairs due to...well letting too many other things that aren't worth doing get in the way. In contrast my costs will be far less on this than if I was repairing an electric washer. Since I have to replace the plunger, that's what $2 at most?

    Some tips for you:

    If you can put the tub where you can access water and drain used water, all the better. Trying to haul water and lift the tub to empty is the hardest part.

    Prepare to have wash days. This task takes more time than using an automatic. You will have to take breaks in between as it is a physical task. I would stop when I had my laundry lines full and give the kids lessons until the laundry was dry then wash more while they folded and picked up the clean clothes.

    The tub can be made with a number of common items:

    • a bucket- easy to empty and store but it doesn't hold as much clothes as other tubs
    • a child's swimming pool- this will hold lots of clothes but takes more than one person to empty
    • a metal or plastic tub- tubs can be found still but they aren't common. I found a plastic one that was a planter trying to look like an old fashioned wash tub for the country gardener. 
    • A Rubbermaid or other brand storage box- I was using a high sided one that worked well for this
    • An ice chest- I am eyeing my husband's that he has so foolishly left in my line of vision. It has a stopper for draining the melted water. Hmm..might not that make a fantastic and drainable tub? Maybe you know somebody looking to toss an old one that has the latches broken that holds the top on?

    Commercial detergent is not necessarily the best to use. It makes a lot of suds and that means you will be rinsing forever. It might also be hard on the yard if you are pouring right onto the ground. I started making my own laundry soap again and will use only that for the handwashing.

    The sun is your friend! It will never send you a bill for heating water in tubs left in direct sunlight, drying clothes on the line and giving those clothes extra whitening power.

    The rain will not send you a bill either if you find a way to collect rain water and use it to wash in. I am still working on this one myself so I may have comments later.

    Protect your hands by using gloves. It won't do to save money now by washing only to spend it later on pricy hand creams to repair damaged skin.

     

     

     

     

     

     

    The Dollar Stretcher Community Manager



  • Wed, Mar 28 2007 3:43 PM In reply to

    • Brandy
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on Wed, Mar 28 2007
    • Saving in South Mississippi
    • Posts 25,145

    Re: Corn Cob Living

    "Hmm. That still sounds corn cobbish, doesn't it?"

     You are dressing up a plant with a caterpillar made out of old tea bag strings and a suspicious curly plastic thing that I am afraid  to ask whee you actually found it....do I need to answer that question?

    But we'll call us even after that last post of mine, eh? Particularly since I am eyeing that ice chest that is in the middle of the yard looking quite abandoned and thinking "it has a drainer".

     

     
     

     

    The Dollar Stretcher Community Manager



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