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Our oldest son is in the middle of eighth grade.  While that means we need to learn how to manage life at the high school, I’m slightly alarmed to find out how quickly we have to jump right in to college prep!

Higher education is important to open yourself up to more job opportunities.  But to me, higher education doesn’t automatically mean college.  So it’s time for us to learn about the different options our students have.

I’ll be learning as much as I can about avoiding debt for college, trade school, or whatever our kids choose to do with their lives.  And once I feel like I know enough about this, I’ll be sure to pass information along to you!

Every Friday, we look back on our week to pick out 5 ways that we saved money.  This keeps us on track for finishing up our debt payoff.  Later, it will help us be more intentional about the way we spend.  Spending money isn’t a bad thing, but letting it drip away from your checking account is!

If you love ideas for saving money, grab your copy of the super money saving book!500 Ways to Save Money





The 5 Way We’ve Saved Money This Week

Ideas for saving the most money each week.

Barn Electric

We have baby goats due any day now, so we’ve been prepping the barn for their arrival!  Since we use heat lamps with them, we needed to run some extra electric.

Hubby worked out his plans and headed for the hardware store.  But once he got there, he rethought those plans and decided to use different materials.  Checking out different methods saved us some money and lots of time.

Recreations Outlet

Our four year old needed to get out of the house!  Since we can’t head to the park in this wintery weather, we decided to try out a new-to-us place.  It’s an indoor park of sorts, with trampolines and lots of big playground equipment.

For just $6, he got to play until he was tired and ready to go home!  Totally worth it.

Are you signed up for the weekly newsletter? It’s a quick email with extra money saving tips you’ll love.  Sign up and you’ll get some free bonuses you can use right away!

Make Ahead Meals

I mentioned last week that I am getting back into the habit of cooking from scratch.  It occurred to me that I often think I don’t have time for make ahead meals.  But the truth is that you can do a few small things in less than 5 minutes that will save you money!

So I built a resource of recipe ideas.  I sorted it by the amount of time and effort it takes to make each thing on the list.  So if you only have 5 minutes, you still have options!  If you’ve got 5 minutes of effort in you, but  you don’t mind reading a book while the food cooks for 30 minutes, there are choices for that.

I think this is going to be helpful to a lot of us who just don’t think we have the time for make ahead meals!

Make Ahead Meals: Ideas That Will Fit Your Schedule Today


One thing we decided was worth spending some money on last year (even in our #yearofno) was date night.  We need to nurture our relationship!  Getting out of the house for some fun is always good for us.

In the process, we discovered how much we love a good concert.  So when we heard that Elton John would be bringing a farewell tour concert to our city, we decided to splurge on tickets.

But not a huge splurge.  Life in the #newnormal means that we looked for compromise tickets.  Not the most expensive seats, but nothing so high up it would spoil the experience.

We can’t wait to go!  (I’ve had Yellow Brick Road in my head for days now!)


I tend to buy a lot of produce when I go grocery shopping.  I prefer the kids snack on an apple rather than chips.  But the truth is that having a lot of produce on hand usually means a lot of waste happens.

It might be that an apple gets overlooked because it was too lumpy (and then it goes bad).  Or a child takes two bites and decides that he’s done with the whole pear.  Either way, having a lot of fruit on hand seems to give them permission to be wasteful.

So this week I bought less produce.  Scarcity reminds us to appreciate what we have.

I also took advantage of my favorite 49 cents per box pasta deal!  Learn more about my method for grocery shopping here.

I’m constantly pinning money saving tips and ideas for getting out of debt!

Follow Medium Sized Family on Pinterest and get even more money savers.

Those are the 5 ways we saved money this week!

So many people requested the recipe for Cranberry Orange Bread that I posted it this week.  You won’t want to miss this amazing recipe!


Cranberry Orange Bread Recipe

How did you save this week?