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Do you give your kids gifts for Easter?  I’ve heard of some parents that decide to gift an item they were going to have to buy the kids this time of year anyway (like boots or a folding chair for ball games).  Then there are the parents that want to go all out for their kids no matter what we’re celebrating.

I’ve done both.  On baby’s first Easter, he was 4 months old.  But I decided he needed another fun toy to kick at during floor time.  (Really?  What was I thinking??)

These days I recognize the beauty in simplicity.  I like the idea of keeping this holiday focused on Jesus.  So even though some kids need new shoes and I’d like to get the little guy some toys for his sand box, I’m resisting.  Besides, who wants to start the race where you buy something for one kid and then have to even it up for the rest of them?

Try simplifying something and see how it feels.  I bet the sigh of relief is worth more than the extra money in the bank!

5 Ways We’ve Saved Money This Week

5 Ways We've Saved Money This's all about simplifying!

Easter Clothes

Speaking of simplifying, I used to think everyone needed a shiny new outfit every year for Easter.  For a while that was true.  Little boys grow like weeds, and we didn’t have many hand me downs.

These days, most of us have overflowing dressers and closets full of clothes.  So I’ve backed off on the need for brand new clothes.  The boys couldn’t care less anyway.  The girl?  Well, she doesn’t get many church dresses handed down from friends, so I did splurge on a dress for her.

When I say “splurge”, I mean I spent $13 using a coupon at JC Penney’s.  She’ll get a lot of wear out of this dress!  That girl loves dressing up.

Used My ECBs

I love CVS.  We have one right here in our little town (it’s a 20-30 minute drive to most stores from here).  If you play your cards right, you can use coupons from their in store printing stand to match with sales prices and then get ECBs back after you make your purchase.  (ECBs are Extra Care Bucks…kind of like a free gift card back to the store.)

While running errands, I noticed a $5 ECB floating around in my purse that was about to expire.  I decided to swing into the store right away.  It always aggravates me to find an expired ECB…that’s like throwing away money!

I grabbed a box of cereal and a gallon of milk.  That got me to $4.60 something.  On my way to the register I looked a bit for a small item to round out my purchase.  I didn’t find anything in that price, and I realized that I was actually better off using less than the full $5 than spending extra change on something I didn’t need anyway.

There might not be any such thing as a free lunch, but we got a free breakfast!

Free Fun

Some family friends were getting rid of an old outdoor play set.  They passed along the house to us.  Our 3 year old is getting a huge kick out of having an outdoor toy that is all his own!

Big Debt Payment

I got some paperwork in the mail that made me realize we’d somehow gotten 3 months ahead on our mortgage payment.  Don’t get me wrong, I’d rather be a little ahead on our bills.  It’s like an emergency buffer all its own.  But 3 months seemed like too much, especially when our focus is on paying off credit card number 2.

After some discussion with the Hubby, we decided it was best to send this month’s payment to the card instead.  So now we’ve already cut that card down more than we could have imagined at such an early stage in the game!  Just the boost we needed to encourage us to pay it off even faster than we’d anticipated.

Learn more about our debt plan here:

SMART Goals and Our BIG Plan for Debt Payoff April


I was told that we owed the school cafeteria money.  But I didn’t think that could be the case, because we rarely let our children buy school lunches.  (It’s so much cheaper to pack!)  So I asked for a statement of the activity on the account.

They had made an error months ago, and we didn’t actually owe anything.

It’s always a good idea to ask rather than shrugging and paying anyway!

Those are the 5 Ways We’ve Saved Money This Week!

Have a blessed Easter weekend!

Be sure to check out How to Develop Self Control: 5 Tips for Getting What You Want Most.

How to Have Self Control: 5 Tips to Get What You Want Most

How did you save this week?