Author Topic: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run  (Read 12171 times)

Elaine

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Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« on: September 13, 2013, 12:30:23 PM »
Ok, so this might not be as impressive as training for a marathon or building a house, but something I've noticed on my (admittedly new) journey of stubble is that being frugal is actually leading to me treating myself a lot better, a lot more often, and I think you should all join me!

In an effort to curb my money spending I've been doing all sorts of things that are actually making me feel like a total fancypants while being wayyy less expensive! Share your luxuriously pampering frugal tips if you're into this too, so far I have:

1. Rediscovered reading in the bath. I bought bulk epsom salt and some oils and I can make various relaxing bath mixes, I just sit with some candles and a book. In the rash of my "going out all the time" 20s I totally forgot that I love doing this. Now I finally have the time, and it's a lot better for me than unwinding with drinks after work.

2. Bought a plate and bowl for work. I already bring lunch and breakfast to work, but I realized the other day that eating out of tupperware is really depressing to me. I went to the dollar store and got a bowl and plate, and now I heat up my homemade food, put it on a REAL plate with a REAL fork and walk past all the other cube workers who are eating out of bags and plastic containers from takeout. Everyone stares when I walk because it smells/looks so good (cost of food per day for me is $2.49 total). It sounds so small but even just taking time at work out of my day to hand wash a bowl makes me feel more human.

3. Skin. So this one is more applicable to the ladies, but I used to spend a laughable assload of money at Sephora. Since growing out my stache I have ditched all the products and now just buy Ponds Cold Cream Cleanser. It has moisturizer in it already and it's so much faster to get ready in the morning, afterward I splash on some witch hazel and I'm good to go. Hilarious side effect: as if by pure mustachian magic my LIFELONG acne has disappeared and my skin has literally never looked better. I think it's because I decided to stop agonizing over it all the time, less stress = better health! All the spendy ladies at work have been asking if I got a facial, hah!

5. Iced Tea & Coffee. My fella has been cold brewing Iced Coffee at home and he's also great about making iced tea, nowadays we have two kinds of tea on hand at all times. It feels so luxurious to just walk over the the fridge and think, "hm, which delicious beverage at my disposal should I choose?"


My goal is to get back to a good workout routine, because like all of these things that in my consumerist days I just didn't have time for, I know it will benefit me to do it again. I know I'll feel better about my whole life in general. And I also want to unplug a bit more, I tend to always have netflix playing whether I'm watching or not, just as a distraction- I really want to enjoy the moment I'm in more- how do you enjoy your moments and what would you like to improve on?

 

Matt K

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #1 on: September 13, 2013, 01:05:32 PM »
Good stuff!

My wife and I routinely eat fancy-pants meals. Butter garlic shrimp, fancy veggies, roasts, you name it. All cooked while the radio plays some jazz and boxed wine flows. It's a party for two and costs less than a meal for one at burger chain.

imustachemystash

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #2 on: September 13, 2013, 10:30:24 PM »
I really liked your ideas!  I'm so overwhelmed with starting the new school year and running after my kids, the idea of frugal pampering hasn't even crossed my mind lately.  It's important though, so I will try to be more conscious about it and report back when I have something to share.

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #3 on: September 14, 2013, 06:28:07 AM »
Yes! I like to think of home and shower as a DIY spa. So I enjoy making luxury body products like: hair/body moisturizer from essential oils (many of which have medicinal properties) and coconut oil; luscious body powder from essential oils and rice powder; facewash from raw local honey; body balm from beeswax, essential oils, etc.

These are the kinds of things that cost a fortune if you buy them in the shops, but on your own they don't take much time, cost very little, and you can tweak them to your own tastes.

Thanks to the MMM forums I found many of these recipes on http://crunchybetty.com

DocCyane

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #4 on: September 14, 2013, 06:32:57 AM »
Excellent! I'm going to try #3.

cdttmm

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #5 on: September 14, 2013, 07:49:10 AM »
I need to do #2 -- I think it would definitely add a little (frugal) luxury to my work day. Thanks for the reminder!

CJMcF

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #6 on: September 15, 2013, 08:03:04 AM »
Great post - you can live a good life whatever your means - I love nice tea and coffee - enjoying a pot of Lady Grey tea as we speak - its great!

swick

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #7 on: October 04, 2013, 11:09:04 AM »
Finally getting back to this thread. Read it a while ago and said to myself, I need to think about this some.

the frugal part we have no problem with, the "feeling rich in the moment" part I have trouble with on a personal level - most of the time because I just don't take the "time" for myself, everyone else, sure!

Here are my ideas I am/will start to incorporate:

1. Nurture myself with some aromatherapy. I have the supplies, I have the training, I help everyone else out, but not myself.
2. Make food with ingredients I enjoy - even if no one else does - and occasionally buy something only I will eat.
3.Spend time making myself tasty food, I have a bad habit of not wanting to put in the effort if it is only me.

Our fancy pants  "home indulgence" purchase was a Soda Stream which we use almost daily and make our own shrubs and syrups with botanicals and honey and what not. Way better for us and the environment then soda and makes us feel really good:)

Also I make my own chai concentrate in the crockpot, which is a totally cheap (if you have the spices) and indulgent way to unwind and hide from the cold :)

edited: Because it would be awfully hard to concentrate chairs in a crockpot...no matter how long you had em on for :P
« Last Edit: October 06, 2013, 10:51:50 AM by swick »

Melody

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #8 on: October 06, 2013, 04:12:02 AM »
Laze in the hammock! 100% free as the hammock was put there by my housemate.... and feels soooooo good!
But on a side not, devoting less time to consumerism, should allow more time for enjoying ourselves. Go MMM!

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #9 on: October 06, 2013, 08:25:21 PM »
I wish there was a +1 or "like" button so I could click on it for all these posts! 

So many times we forget that it is the simple things in life that give great pleasure.  Costs of the item or activity are often disjointed from the actual pleasure or satisfaction derived from that item or activity. 

Everyone is so busy these days, that it is quite a luxury to simply take a short while (minutes or just a few hours) to do whatever you want without feeling guilty about wasting time.  Time seems to be the luxury.

Now that I'm retired, I have the time to slow down a bit.  Sit in the hammock more.  Cook more elaborate meals.  Go shopping and try new foods or learn new recipes. 

My little "feeling rich" moment was sitting down on a Saturday morning after a long week at work.  Good book in hand, hot coffee steaming next to me.  I shut the door to my office and prop my feet up for maybe an hour or two till everyone is up and I'm summoned to do something.  Now I can have my quiet time just about anytime.  Once the kids are asleep in bed.  :)

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #10 on: October 06, 2013, 09:56:16 PM »
Elaine - thanks so much for this list!

I'm on a tight budget right now and was wanting to make things a little more interesting. This will help!!

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #11 on: October 09, 2013, 11:51:35 AM »
Awesome ideas! 

My big indulgence has been cooking at home.  I've always gone out to eat for most of my meals.  Now I actually cook food...and it's usually pretty good!  Plus, I have leftovers for lunch...so I'm not stuck eating crackers for lunch on days that I can't get away from my office. 

Today, I'm going to have homemade chicken noodle soup for lunch.  It's my favorite!

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #12 on: October 09, 2013, 05:06:22 PM »
I've been spending every free moment picking raspberries at the local U-pick farm (conveniently, it's located between my two work locations).  For $3.50/lb, I'm getting delicious no-spray red and yellow raspberries.  And I get to eat the ones that fall off the vine and are too ripe to put in my basket. :)

Luxurious!

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #13 on: October 11, 2013, 08:27:35 AM »
Awesome ideas! 

My big indulgence has been cooking at home.  I've always gone out to eat for most of my meals.  Now I actually cook food...and it's usually pretty good!  Plus, I have leftovers for lunch...so I'm not stuck eating crackers for lunch on days that I can't get away from my office. 

Today, I'm going to have homemade chicken noodle soup for lunch.  It's my favorite!

We splurge a little on cooking food at home.  For example, occasionally we will make artichoke dip, and it costs around $6 for an 8x8 dish full, or $12 if we are making a big dish for a party.  Pretty pricey dish, but when I think about the $10 (incl tax and tip) artichoke dip appetizers that are about 1/6 the size of our $6 artichoke dip, it is a really great value.  I justify spending the money on the grounds that if we had beans and rice every day, we would go out to eat more and spend way more money overall. 

Elaine

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #14 on: October 14, 2013, 12:04:17 PM »
Just thought I'd add a few more recently discovered frugal luxuries! So glad everyone is enjoying this!

5. Library swap trips. My boyfriend and I have started a new game where we try to choose books for each other at the libraries nearest to our respective workplaces. We know the general topics/genres that each other likes, but it's still tough to choose for one another, you really have to think! It has resulted in me reading some things I wouldn't have thought to pick up, and him being introduced to some new ideas he wouldn't have sought out himself. PLUS, it kind of feels like we're getting each other presents when we unveil our picks for each other! Cost: $0

6. Roasting Chicken. I know this is so stupidly simple, but buying a whole chicken (at least in my area) is much cheaper per pound than buying just specific parts (breasts, legs, etc.). There's something about roasting a whole chicken that's been drenched in butter in the oven as the weather is getting chilly that just makes me feel so homey and cozy and weeeeee! Plus it gives you a ton of meat, we're a household of only two and the meat from one chicken lasted us about two and a half weeks (I froze some, obviously).

7. PICKLES. I am pickle crazy, I would choose pickles over sweets any day but they are expensive. Lately I've been making what I call cheater pickles, or refrigerator pickles. I made a ton of spicy carrot pickles last week, there's something so luxe to me about having a snack that you can eat AS MUCH AS YOU WANT of. Plus I don't put salt in mine, so win/win.

8. Branching out on hobbies. So this is more of a goal for myself, but my fella agrees that we need some better cheap/free hobbies to enjoy together. When we met we were big bar hopper/concert goer types, now that we've gotten away from that (for myriad reasons) we find ourselves just vegging out to netflix many nights and weekends. We decided we'd both like to try hiking and then maybe extend to camping if we like it. I think this weekend we will start out easy by going to a local park and doing the 8 mile circle hike there, I'll be packing a cheap yet gourmet picnic as well from money in our grocery budget, so the only cost will be taking the train to the park!

Let's keep these ideas rolling! Who has awesome cheap/free hobbies?

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #15 on: October 14, 2013, 03:01:22 PM »
Awesome ideas! 

My big indulgence has been cooking at home.  I've always gone out to eat for most of my meals.  Now I actually cook food...and it's usually pretty good!  Plus, I have leftovers for lunch...so I'm not stuck eating crackers for lunch on days that I can't get away from my office. 

Today, I'm going to have homemade chicken noodle soup for lunch.  It's my favorite!

We splurge a little on cooking food at home.  For example, occasionally we will make artichoke dip, and it costs around $6 for an 8x8 dish full, or $12 if we are making a big dish for a party.  Pretty pricey dish, but when I think about the $10 (incl tax and tip) artichoke dip appetizers that are about 1/6 the size of our $6 artichoke dip, it is a really great value.  I justify spending the money on the grounds that if we had beans and rice every day, we would go out to eat more and spend way more money overall.

I might have to start trying to make restaurant dishes.  My husband likes heavy restaurant dishes.  I don't, so I've never tried to cook any of them. I just thought they're expensive to make and we might not finish the dish.

To the group, What type of oil do you use for your body?

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #16 on: October 14, 2013, 03:33:11 PM »
Yes! I like to think of home and shower as a DIY spa. So I enjoy making luxury body products like: hair/body moisturizer from essential oils (many of which have medicinal properties) and coconut oil; luscious body powder from essential oils and rice powder; facewash from raw local honey; body balm from beeswax, essential oils, etc.

These are the kinds of things that cost a fortune if you buy them in the shops, but on your own they don't take much time, cost very little, and you can tweak them to your own tastes.

Thanks to the MMM forums I found many of these recipes on http://crunchybetty.com

I've been doing the same! I'm continually amazed that I can get "spa quality" soaps if I make them myself, and NO worrying about what creepy ingredients are in there. I made a liquid hand soap with grated Dr. Bronner's, liquid glycerin and lavender essential oil that is so silky and nice, way better than the equivalently priced bulk budget soap full of sodium laureth sulphate.

RootofGood

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #17 on: October 16, 2013, 07:43:10 AM »
We splurge a little on cooking food at home.  For example, occasionally we will make artichoke dip, and it costs around $6 for an 8x8 dish full, or $12 if we are making a big dish for a party.  Pretty pricey dish, but when I think about the $10 (incl tax and tip) artichoke dip appetizers that are about 1/6 the size of our $6 artichoke dip, it is a really great value.  I justify spending the money on the grounds that if we had beans and rice every day, we would go out to eat more and spend way more money overall.

I might have to start trying to make restaurant dishes.  My husband likes heavy restaurant dishes.  I don't, so I've never tried to cook any of them. I just thought they're expensive to make and we might not finish the dish.

Some dishes can be expensive to make.  But put it in context - the cost at the restaurant is typically ~4x what the cost at home is.  For the artichoke dip I make, I could cut the recipe in half and it would make a large appetizer for 2-3 people.  At a cost of ~$3.  We love artichoke dip, and would probably be tempted into ordering it occasionally at a restaurant if we didn't know how to make it better at home. 

Marinated artichokes in a jar aren't cheap (~$2 at Aldi, maybe $3-4 at the regular grocery), but at some point you have to get over the fact that you are spending $2 for a small jar of artichokes if you want to recreate that $10 appetizer at home. 

We cook a fair amount of ethnic foods, and the ingredients aren't cheap for those either.  We made a huge pot of pad thai this weekend at a cost of around $20.  However we have been eating on the left overs all week, and it keeps Mrs RootofGood from spending $6 in the work cafeteria each day if she has delicious bag lunches.  I figured the per meal cost of pad thai at around $1 for a medium size meal portion.  At a restaurant, the same portion would cost $5-10 at least. 

For heavy dishes that involve creamy alfredo sauces, you use heavy cream (typically) and/or olive oil.  It seems unhealthy (because it is in large portions), but that plus a bunch of salt is what makes restaurant dishes so delicious.  The heavy cream isn't that expensive compared to the restaurant, and pasta is dirt cheap.  Throw in some seafood or other meat and some vegs, and you have a typical heavy italian white sauce pasta dish. 

We also keep store bought real bacon bits and a jar of capers on hand at all times.  Those two add a lot of flavor to heavy white sauces or lighter olive oil sauces.  Bacon bits = poor man's pancetta or prosciutto.  I'll also cheat sometimes and use my real half/half (for my coffee) in my white sauces (or even in curries!).  I rarely buy heavy cream, so if I'm hankering for a white sauce pasta dish, I make do.  I also use the jar alfredo sauce as the sauce base sometimes.  Makes cooking quicker and easier.  Cooking totally from scratch every time means we would go out to eat more often given time constraints. 

My thoughts on expensive ingredients - try to get them cheap if they are on sale or clearance.  Don't be afraid to try a dish even with expensive ingredients.  Worst case - you bungle the dish and toss out $10-$20 worth of ingredients and have a slightly disappointing PBJ instead.  More typically, the first try of a dish will come out "okay", and you'll eat it and figure out how to make it better next time. 

I consider risking $10-20 in order to discover a way to save $20+ every meal (vs restaurant prices) as an excellent investment.  For us the savings are double because we have 3 kids. 
« Last Edit: October 16, 2013, 07:46:58 AM by RootofGood »

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #18 on: October 21, 2013, 07:18:15 PM »
Reading in the bath = ultimate luxury.

Sitting on the balcony (or veranda, back patio, etc depending on your house) and drinking a coffee or hot chocolate when the weather is nice and you can just watch the trees, birds etc.

At the moment I'm focusing on luxuries that are actually really cheap if you DIY them - like RootOfGood's restaurants meals at home. I'm currently wearing two bracelets that cost me all of $15 in beads (black onyx for one and lavender amethyst for the other) and are reasonable replicas of ones I've seen and wanted at $500 a pop in jewellers' windows.

Sleeping in to whatever time you naturally want to wake up :-) now that's a luxury I plan on enjoying a lot more after FI.

4alpacas

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #19 on: October 24, 2013, 03:22:49 PM »
We splurge a little on cooking food at home.  For example, occasionally we will make artichoke dip, and it costs around $6 for an 8x8 dish full, or $12 if we are making a big dish for a party.  Pretty pricey dish, but when I think about the $10 (incl tax and tip) artichoke dip appetizers that are about 1/6 the size of our $6 artichoke dip, it is a really great value.  I justify spending the money on the grounds that if we had beans and rice every day, we would go out to eat more and spend way more money overall.

I might have to start trying to make restaurant dishes.  My husband likes heavy restaurant dishes.  I don't, so I've never tried to cook any of them. I just thought they're expensive to make and we might not finish the dish.

Some dishes can be expensive to make.  But put it in context - the cost at the restaurant is typically ~4x what the cost at home is.  For the artichoke dip I make, I could cut the recipe in half and it would make a large appetizer for 2-3 people.  At a cost of ~$3.  We love artichoke dip, and would probably be tempted into ordering it occasionally at a restaurant if we didn't know how to make it better at home. 

Marinated artichokes in a jar aren't cheap (~$2 at Aldi, maybe $3-4 at the regular grocery), but at some point you have to get over the fact that you are spending $2 for a small jar of artichokes if you want to recreate that $10 appetizer at home. 

We cook a fair amount of ethnic foods, and the ingredients aren't cheap for those either.  We made a huge pot of pad thai this weekend at a cost of around $20.  However we have been eating on the left overs all week, and it keeps Mrs RootofGood from spending $6 in the work cafeteria each day if she has delicious bag lunches.  I figured the per meal cost of pad thai at around $1 for a medium size meal portion.  At a restaurant, the same portion would cost $5-10 at least. 

For heavy dishes that involve creamy alfredo sauces, you use heavy cream (typically) and/or olive oil.  It seems unhealthy (because it is in large portions), but that plus a bunch of salt is what makes restaurant dishes so delicious.  The heavy cream isn't that expensive compared to the restaurant, and pasta is dirt cheap.  Throw in some seafood or other meat and some vegs, and you have a typical heavy italian white sauce pasta dish. 

We also keep store bought real bacon bits and a jar of capers on hand at all times.  Those two add a lot of flavor to heavy white sauces or lighter olive oil sauces.  Bacon bits = poor man's pancetta or prosciutto.  I'll also cheat sometimes and use my real half/half (for my coffee) in my white sauces (or even in curries!).  I rarely buy heavy cream, so if I'm hankering for a white sauce pasta dish, I make do.  I also use the jar alfredo sauce as the sauce base sometimes.  Makes cooking quicker and easier.  Cooking totally from scratch every time means we would go out to eat more often given time constraints. 

My thoughts on expensive ingredients - try to get them cheap if they are on sale or clearance.  Don't be afraid to try a dish even with expensive ingredients.  Worst case - you bungle the dish and toss out $10-$20 worth of ingredients and have a slightly disappointing PBJ instead.  More typically, the first try of a dish will come out "okay", and you'll eat it and figure out how to make it better next time. 

I consider risking $10-20 in order to discover a way to save $20+ every meal (vs restaurant prices) as an excellent investment.  For us the savings are double because we have 3 kids.
Thanks for the advice!  I'm looking forward to the challenge of recreating restaurant dishes!

My favorite indulgence is magazines.  I wait until the subscriptions are really cheap (less than $5/year) or use expiring airlines miles to purchase annual subscriptions.  I used to travel a lot, so I have a few thousand miles with an airline carrier that I rarely use (never enough for a free flight). 

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #20 on: October 25, 2013, 10:12:14 AM »
Thanks for the advice!  I'm looking forward to the challenge of recreating restaurant dishes!

My favorite indulgence is magazines.  I wait until the subscriptions are really cheap (less than $5/year) or use expiring airlines miles to purchase annual subscriptions.  I used to travel a lot, so I have a few thousand miles with an airline carrier that I rarely use (never enough for a free flight).

We have used airline miles for cheap magazines too.  If you like The Economist, that's the cheapest way to get a subscription.  They usually run around $100/yr and you can get a year for 3300 miles or so last time I subscribed.  3300 miles = ~70 miles (or $1 worth of points) per issue.  And for those airlines where you only have a few thousand points, perfect use of miles that would expire anyway.  Simple indulgences! 

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #21 on: October 25, 2013, 11:05:33 AM »
Honestly, the picture that comes to mind when I think about feeling rich in the moment due to being frugal is the great Father's Day we spent at the park enjoying a picnic lunch. It was relaxing, outside, and a lot of fun to be with the people I love the most. Quite an indulgence!

I am also enjoying iced tea made with actual teabags, not powdered fake-sugary stuff.

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #22 on: October 28, 2013, 07:23:28 AM »
Thanks for the advice!  I'm looking forward to the challenge of recreating restaurant dishes!

My favorite indulgence is magazines.  I wait until the subscriptions are really cheap (less than $5/year) or use expiring airlines miles to purchase annual subscriptions.  I used to travel a lot, so I have a few thousand miles with an airline carrier that I rarely use (never enough for a free flight).

We have used airline miles for cheap magazines too.  If you like The Economist, that's the cheapest way to get a subscription.  They usually run around $100/yr and you can get a year for 3300 miles or so last time I subscribed.  3300 miles = ~70 miles (or $1 worth of points) per issue.  And for those airlines where you only have a few thousand points, perfect use of miles that would expire anyway.  Simple indulgences!

I love The Economist and I have some Virgin Miles that will never get to be enough for a flight! Perfect! Thank you!
This would also be a great gift for people!

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #23 on: October 28, 2013, 09:27:50 AM »
Love it! This past Saturday, we had some friends basically insist that they watch our two kiddos for the night, so the wife and I could go on a Big Date Night. We haven't had much time to ourselves lately, so we were happy to oblige. My wife asked me what I wanted to do on our date, and I admitted I hadn't really thought about it. There is only one nice restaurant in our town, so that tends to be our de facto date night destination. Wife told me, "You know, we really don't have to go out tonight. We could just stay here and cook." That sounded better to me anyway, so while wife took the kids to our friends' house, I whipped up a quick dinner: Grilled turkey and swiss sandwiches on whole wheat; steamed peppers, onions, and mushrooms in red wine, olive oil, and Greek seasoning; and fresh grean beans wrapped in bacon: all of it then cooked over a bed of oak coals in our firepit out back, with a glass of red wine. We felt rich and relaxed and enjoyed far better conversation than we would have had we gone to a restaurant!

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #24 on: October 28, 2013, 01:48:55 PM »
Thanks for the advice!  I'm looking forward to the challenge of recreating restaurant dishes!

My favorite indulgence is magazines.  I wait until the subscriptions are really cheap (less than $5/year) or use expiring airlines miles to purchase annual subscriptions.  I used to travel a lot, so I have a few thousand miles with an airline carrier that I rarely use (never enough for a free flight).

We have used airline miles for cheap magazines too.  If you like The Economist, that's the cheapest way to get a subscription.  They usually run around $100/yr and you can get a year for 3300 miles or so last time I subscribed.  3300 miles = ~70 miles (or $1 worth of points) per issue.  And for those airlines where you only have a few thousand points, perfect use of miles that would expire anyway.  Simple indulgences!

I love The Economist and I have some Virgin Miles that will never get to be enough for a flight! Perfect! Thank you!
This would also be a great gift for people!

You're welcome!  And these miles for mag programs often have the "seedier" mass consumption magazines for 300-500 miles as well (a few bucks).  I got the wife a couple subscriptions to these type magazines last year just to keep the points from expiring.  She likes to flip through them and skim the articles but would never pay $20/yr for a subscription. 

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #25 on: October 29, 2013, 05:23:28 PM »

Marinated artichokes in a jar aren't cheap (~$2 at Aldi, maybe $3-4 at the regular grocery), but at some point you have to get over the fact that you are spending $2 for a small jar of artichokes if you want to recreate that $10 appetizer at home. 



Check out frozen artichokes.  I've found them to be much cheaper than the jarred ones.

RootofGood

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #26 on: October 29, 2013, 06:49:17 PM »

Marinated artichokes in a jar aren't cheap (~$2 at Aldi, maybe $3-4 at the regular grocery), but at some point you have to get over the fact that you are spending $2 for a small jar of artichokes if you want to recreate that $10 appetizer at home. 



Check out frozen artichokes.  I've found them to be much cheaper than the jarred ones.

Are they in the frozen section at regular grocery stores?  I'll have to check them out. I think the jars are 10-12 oz for $2. 

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #27 on: October 30, 2013, 08:38:09 AM »

Marinated artichokes in a jar aren't cheap (~$2 at Aldi, maybe $3-4 at the regular grocery), but at some point you have to get over the fact that you are spending $2 for a small jar of artichokes if you want to recreate that $10 appetizer at home. 



Check out frozen artichokes.  I've found them to be much cheaper than the jarred ones.

Yes, I think they are birdseye brand...or at least the ones carried by our local grocery store.  I don't know the weight offhand, but a frozen block of artichoke hearts has a lot more artichoke hearts than the same weight or artichoke hearts and oil...because of the weight of the oil.

Are they in the frozen section at regular grocery stores?  I'll have to check them out. I think the jars are 10-12 oz for $2.

cbgg

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #28 on: November 01, 2013, 03:14:20 PM »
The number one thing that makes me feel like I'm living the good life cheaply is having an awesome picnic.  Pack up some yummy food and drinks and a picnic blanket and head to whatever area in your town has a million dollar view.  Maybe it's a look out spot up a mountain, maybe it's the beach, maybe it's a park that gets a great view of the sunset.  It's just as thrify as eating at home, but with a million dollar view and fresh air. 

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #29 on: November 01, 2013, 04:48:07 PM »
Yes, I think they are birdseye brand...or at least the ones carried by our local grocery store.  I don't know the weight offhand, but a frozen block of artichoke hearts has a lot more artichoke hearts than the same weight or artichoke hearts and oil...because of the weight of the oil.

Thanks, I'll check that out.  I think you are right on the weights.  12 oz (weight) of frozen artichokes is a larger quantity than 12 oz (volume) of artichokes in oil because they count the volume of the oil in the 12 oz. 

Unfortunately, the marinating oil gives the artichoke dip part of the flavor, so I may not be able to substitute without compromising flavor.  Worth a shot though!

C. K.

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #30 on: November 01, 2013, 08:44:40 PM »
Working so much, I just enjoy being home.

I used to feel peer pressure to go somewhere every night, every weekend or to go out of town for vacation. As fun as those things are,  most of the time I just wanted to be at home and enjoy what I have.

This is the first group that I've met who "gets" that concept. Thanks for that.

Many people in my offline life can't understand that. In fact, some of them began to pity me. They assume I stopped going out so much because I can't afford it. Ha! Little do they know...


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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #31 on: November 02, 2013, 07:33:35 AM »
Unfortunately, the marinating oil gives the artichoke dip part of the flavor, so I may not be able to substitute without compromising flavor.  Worth a shot though!

If you plan ahead a little, you can always marinate them yourself at home. I'm not sure how long it would take them to absorb the flavour, but for me it's usually 1 day. I have never "worked" with frozen or marinated artichoke hearts, because we usually get them fresh here, at a certain time in the year. We cook them, make a nice dip to eat the leaves with, then after all leaves are gone, we get the hearts and use in different recipes (unless my brother is at the table, he loves eating the hearts as is).

This is probably more expensive than buying only the hearts frozen, because we tend to pay R$1 to R$4 (when it's almost going off season) per artichoke. But we get this amazing dish of coocked artichokes leaves which we love, and then use the "leftover" hearts in other recipes.

ender

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #32 on: November 02, 2013, 08:42:45 AM »
I bought an electric keyboard about 6 months ago. Amazing what joy this brings me!

(why don't I play it more often again???)

RootofGood

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #33 on: November 02, 2013, 07:04:21 PM »
Dinner on the back patio.  Lakeside al fresco dining.  For $5 total.  For us and our 3 kids.

Roasted Thai garlic chicken with roasted fresh zucchini and carrots.  On a bed of Thai jasmine rice. 

Apple pie and vanilla ice cream for dessert, along with roasted pumpkin seeds. 

All throughout dinner, we were watching wispy altocumulus clouds drift quickly across the pink sky.  The sun dipped behind the trees as we were finishing up dinner, and a thick, dark cloud let us know a cold front is coming. 

Another wonderful ending to a wonderful day.

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #34 on: November 27, 2013, 12:27:25 AM »
Thanks for this thread.  I think that sometimes I have confused having money with feeling fulfilled, and this thread speaks to the fact that anybody can cultivate feeling fulfilled in their lives.

These things make me feel rich and fulfilled in the moment (in no particular order):
- candles burning during a clay bath soak
- getting my houseplants to re-bloom
- vacuuming out the inside of the car (well, the feeling after it's vacuumed)
- connecting with my husband while we lie down on the bed and talk after work
- molding sea-salted butter into one of those silicone flower molds, which then sits on a very fancy looking dish that I got at a yard sale for 25 cents.
- writing all afternoon on my days off


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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #35 on: November 27, 2013, 10:58:40 AM »
What a great topic! This is what I love about frugality, it can help me focus on what truly brings me contentment. My SO will argue with me that I need to spend more or make more and while the latter might be true, I have everything I could want! I want to cook dinner, tend to my plants, bike everywhere, clean and read.

A couple more cheap/free pleasures:
I like to make an herbal tea at night and chat with my SO for awhile.
Inviting friends over to bake together or have a better and cheaper cup of coffee rather than going out.
Taking a walk around the neighborhood rather than watching Netflix.

Elaine

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #36 on: December 03, 2013, 11:36:47 AM »
I just discovered a new little fun frugal activity, to make a movie in a little more date like I've taken to making several kinds of appetizers instead of a regular dinner. So I buy a loaf of bread, make zacusca (it's a Romanian vegetable spread, cheap to make- not sure if it's commonly known or not) and olive oil dipping sauce, get some pickled mushrooms, make some croquettes, deviled potatoes (like deviled eggs but potatoes), or whatever. I used to love eating out, but mostly because you could get lots of appetizers, now I make a spread of appetizers instead of dinner once every couple of weeks. We spread it all over the floor and eat picnic style and watch a movie. I love it!

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #37 on: December 03, 2013, 11:56:32 AM »
I just discovered a new little fun frugal activity, to make a movie in a little more date like I've taken to making several kinds of appetizers instead of a regular dinner. So I buy a loaf of bread, make zacusca (it's a Romanian vegetable spread, cheap to make- not sure if it's commonly known or not) and olive oil dipping sauce, get some pickled mushrooms, make some croquettes, deviled potatoes (like deviled eggs but potatoes), or whatever. I used to love eating out, but mostly because you could get lots of appetizers, now I make a spread of appetizers instead of dinner once every couple of weeks. We spread it all over the floor and eat picnic style and watch a movie. I love it!

Love this idea! Any chance you can share the recipe for the zacusca? We do appetizers too, when we want to spoil ourselves :)

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #38 on: December 03, 2013, 02:47:44 PM »
Laze in the hammock! 100% free as the hammock was put there by my housemate.... and feels soooooo good!
But on a side not, devoting less time to consumerism, should allow more time for enjoying ourselves. Go MMM!

I'm really late to the hammock party. I live in an apartment and don't have access to any private outdoor space. But what a revelation it was for me this past summer when I discovered I could bring my hammock to the gorgeous park a 10 minute walk from my home and string it between two trees. A friend asked for a hammock for her birthday so this summer the two of us would literally hang out together in the park. Such extreme luxury!!! I am already looking forward to spring when it will be warm enough to do this again.

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #39 on: December 03, 2013, 02:53:07 PM »
I just discovered a new little fun frugal activity, to make a movie in a little more date like I've taken to making several kinds of appetizers instead of a regular dinner. So I buy a loaf of bread, make zacusca (it's a Romanian vegetable spread, cheap to make- not sure if it's commonly known or not) and olive oil dipping sauce, get some pickled mushrooms, make some croquettes, deviled potatoes (like deviled eggs but potatoes), or whatever. I used to love eating out, but mostly because you could get lots of appetizers, now I make a spread of appetizers instead of dinner once every couple of weeks. We spread it all over the floor and eat picnic style and watch a movie. I love it!

Love this idea! Any chance you can share the recipe for the zacusca? We do appetizers too, when we want to spoil ourselves :)

We do this too!  Some nights we go "lazy" as we call it with gourmet dinner.  We get a good loaf of bread (can make in a breadmaker), good cheese, some salami, hummus (can make or buy depending on your inclination), cut up some veggies, add in some fruit, and a bit of olive oil for dipping (I like to put a little salt in it, and have a tiny side of balsamic to also dip in).  You end up doing the work of cutting off bits as you go, but it doesn't seem like work and more like luxury.

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #40 on: December 03, 2013, 03:02:18 PM »
We do this too!  Some nights we go "lazy" as we call it with gourmet dinner.  We get a good loaf of bread (can make in a breadmaker), good cheese, some salami, hummus (can make or buy depending on your inclination), cut up some veggies, add in some fruit, and a bit of olive oil for dipping (I like to put a little salt in it, and have a tiny side of balsamic to also dip in).  You end up doing the work of cutting off bits as you go, but it doesn't seem like work and more like luxury.

+1 on the charcuterie spread for dinner every once in a while.  And add some actual olives. 

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Re: Feeling Rich in the Moment, Being Frugal in the Long Run
« Reply #41 on: December 22, 2013, 10:05:56 AM »
Reading in the bath = ultimate luxury.


+1, with a little scented jojoba oil.  sigh...