Thursday, April 22, 2010

Guest Blogger for Thrifty Thursday: Mama Mia McMasters

My friend Linda is a frugal living mother, who has some ideas to share with us.  
When you are done reading her guest post here, check out her blog - Mama Mia McMasters!

Well, I have learned a few things from Erin about creative ways to save a few bucks. I think Thrifty Thursday is a great idea considering there are so many other ideas on the internet about buying rather than saving! Go Erin!

My idea for this week is actually two in one and even more than that, a lifestyle choice. I think what it really boils down to is community and sharing. I was really struck a few years ago by the passage in the beginning of Acts where the believers shared everything in common and gave to each other when there was a need. It made me really think. I threw around the idea of a 'common purse' with a few friends we were moving to Santa Cruz with. We didn't go all the way to sharing the same bank account or anything, but I feel like that season of my life God really impressed on me some great values about sharing and taking the word 'mine' out of my vocabulary as much as possible.

Okay, okay, get to the point. I hear you. This is Thrifty Thursday and you want a little tip about how you can save a few bucks. I'm getting to it! The tip is this: share!

One specific way I have implemented this in my life is buying bulk and splitting the cost. It works great at Costco where we get a big bag of apples and share half of it with a friend. We have roommates, so we all pitch in for groceries and Costco works great. We even split a Costco run with our neighbors about once per month. I share with them (a really young couple) our list of things we are thinking about getting. They look at it and say, "Yeah, that sounds good." Then I go shopping. When I come home I split it all up and bring them over a great box of groceries and they pitch in to pay their share.

Another thing I have done that I really want to continue is pot sharing. No, not that kind of pot, a pot of sauce or soup! I think I make a pretty mean spaghetti sauce. Since I shop bulk I get the huge can of tomato sauce and spice it up with sausage and things to make a huge batch of yummy goodness. We love it. But it's a lot even for my family of five and our two hungry man roommates. So, I called a friend and told her I'd trade her a pot of spaghetti sauce for a pot of her soup. I love her soup and really miss it since we don't live together anymore. It was a really selfish trade and I think I got the better deal. But in reality I think we both got the better deal. We made a dish we are really good at then ate good food the next day that only needed reheating.

There are lots of things that are amazing about living in community (even if it's not in the same house). I have had times in my life when we did live in the same house or on the same property with people. The benefits are amazing. But even when seasons change there are so many things I can incorporate into my life that keep the same value of community. This value is my inspiration for today's Thrifty Thursday, as well as so many other things in my life. Thanks for letting me get on my soap box here. I guess that was a bit more than frugal advice. My thoughts don't always fit in the nice categories and boxes.


Krista said...

Great post Linda, I have been thinking about this same thing lately! I was actually going to ask some friends if they would want to be part of a bread exchange group. You know, because it is so easy to make tons of the same thing at once- so one week I would make a few extra loaves of bread and pass them around, and then the next couple of weeks I wouldn't have to make any because the other people in the exchange would be making some and passing them around!

Charlotte said...

Thanks Linda for such a great post! I love this idea.

For about 4 months my sister in law and her family lived with us while they were buying a house. This was about 7 years ago so my kids were much smaller...there were 6 of them with our families combined. The great thing was we split the housework, laundry, cooking....we actually made up a schedule for who was cooking and doing the laundry certain days. (Those Mormon polygamists have 1 thing in their favor...) I loved it.

Now I don't know how it would work long term, but I love the idea of sharing the load, like someone doubling the spaghetti sauce and another making extra bread then getting together and swapping. This does make me wish I lived closer to you all, but also makes me think of who I could do this with...

Stef said...

this was an awesome post, Linda!
I used to do this type of food sharing with my parents (since there was only two of them at home, Costco was too much bulk) and then often times my neighbor and I would make "too much dinner" on purpose and we'd exchange some leftovers with each other. More often than not though, I would have them over and then they'd return the favor.

Linda's post goes well with your last post, Erin!

Melissa Joy said...

Great thoughts - thank you!

LindaFaye said...

thanks for letting me add my two cents. :)

Melissa Joy said...

Great thoughts - thank you!