Every Friday, I like to post about ways we have saved money this week.  I try to share ideas that go beyond skipping Starbucks daily.  (You can go ahead and assume I made my own coffee at home every day!)  When you are raising 5 kids on one income, you have to look for deeper ways to be frugal.

Here are the ways we have saved money this week.

5 Ways We've Saved Money This Week

I’m not sure that this one counts, but it is so exciting that I am sharing it anyway.  My cousin was selling raffle tickets for the chance to win a quarter of beef for the freezer.  I bought one ticket for $5 and WE WON!  I am so excited!  You can bet I’ll be saving up the money I’d have spent on meat (since we also just bought half of a hog for the freezer) for future meat purchases.

Use a Shopping List  If I know one thing about myself, it’s that I tend to be lazy!  If you want to indulge your lazy side, the best way to do that is to be organized.  So I created a standard grocery list to make it super easy for me to plan out my grocery shopping.  Now I can cross off items if I don’t happen to need them this week, and I can easily add to my list.  Less chance of forgetting items I needed=less trips to the store.

Meal Planning  I know that meal planning can save money for a lot of reasons, but here’s one more.  I was sick earlier this week and wound up going to bed the minute my hubby got home from work.  I assumed he would just order pizza.  Instead, he looked at my meal plan to figure out we had on hand that he could cook easily while watching all of the kids.

Turn off the air conditioner. Keep in mind that we don’t have any crazy Texas heat here.  While I need the a/c to sleep, during the day I can generally function just fine without it by using fans and open windows.  So for the most part we don’t use air, but we do turn on our window unit at night.

Cheap birthday toys.  I was able to find some toys that will make great birthday gifts on the clearance rack at our local drugstore.  They were only a little over $1 each.  They will be given to kids who have birthdays soon (I don’t like storing things for a very long time!) or held for the next random birthday party invitation we get.

And for a bonus tip, I am joining The Peaceful Mom in her Fast Track Savings Missions.  I pledged to save $200, which is definitely a BHAG for us!  I will really have to stretch to reach that goal.

How have you done this week?  Share the creative ways you have saved this week in the comments! (Feel free to share a link to a related blog post!)