Festival Of Frugality #71: Definitions Of Frugality Edition

by golbguru on April 24, 2007

Welcome to the 71st edition of the Festival of Frugality. Before we start with the festival submissions, here are some thoughts. Sometimes, when we are engrossed in squeezing out every ounce of worth from a penny, it is easy to lose sight of reason and rationality. Hence, every once in a while, to put our actions into perspective, it is beneficial to take a step back and look at the bigger picture. In this spirit, let’s first review *frugality* before we jump to the articles.

What is Being Frugal? by Dawn @ Frugal for Life.

Because I live frugally, doesn’t mean I don’t spend money and don’t find enjoyment. I become more thoughtful about my decisions and how it will impact me in the future. I decide if this item is something I need or can use multiple times. Frugality is about restraint, discipline, finding the best value and using the item up till it can’t be used anymore.

Frugality as defined by Wikipedia.

Frugality (also known as thrift or thriftiness), often confused with cheapness or miserliness, is a traditional value, life style, or belief system, in which individuals practice both restraint in the acquiring of and resourceful use of economic goods and services in order to achieve lasting and more fulfilling goals. In a money-based economy, frugality emphasizes economical use of money in meeting long term personal, familial, and communal desires.

What is frugal living? @ eSSORTMENT.com

Frugal living isn’t about giving up the good life; it’s cutting out unnecessary expenditures. Most families who practice frugal living do so, not because they’re in a financial bind, but because they’ve made a conscious decision to take control of their spending and that means not keeping up with the Joneses or maxing out credit cards.

Now, let’s head over to the festival’s entries. 29 articles were accepted for publications.

Frugality Food for Thought

think frugalityFrugal vs. Cheap by Andy @ Money Walks. In this post, Andy expresses his thoughts on defining frugality. This blends in very well with the theme of this edition. Here is one of his thoughts: “Living well for less money is frugality. Leeching off of people to get by is cheap.

Sometimes, You Should Indulge by ISPF @ Grad Money Matters. ISPF thinks outside the conventional frugality box and recommends indulgence once in a while. If you are truly frugal, you could probably find frugal ways of indulging ;)

Frugal Entertainment

soap bubblesBeing A Big Kid - Frugal Entertainment by Super Saver @ My Wealth Builder. This is frugal entertainment plus quality time with the kids in one package. Seriously, kids don’t distinguish between “expensive” and “cheap” entertainment…all they care is about getting *entertained*.

Fifteen Free Things To Do During A Money-Free Weekend by Trent @ The Simple Dollar. Got a lot of free time on weekends and not in a mood to spend a dime? Trent has the perfect solutions for you. Here is one of them:

Blow bubbles. This is a great one if you have kids. Get a gallon of water, then slowly stir in some liquid dishwashing detergent (a cup or two), slow enough not to make suds. Bend an old coat hanger into loops, dip it into the stuff, and blow through the loops. Experiment with different quantities to get the kind of bubbles you want - there is no “perfect” recipe.

I want to quickly mention here that by adding sugar to the soap solution (and after some practice) you could actually make larger bubbles. :) Try it out and see if that works.

Frugal Vacations

frugal vacationsVacation: Need or Want @ Living Almost Large. How do you discern whether a vacation is a need or a want? Do you feel that sometimes people have this overrated sense of *entitlement* for vacations or certain indulgences? It’s one thing to take a frugal break to vacate your mind of daily routines, and it’s other thing to go on unaffordable trips to justify a *break*.

Vacation on a Budget by Stephanie @ Stop the Ride!. Stephanie shares how she planned her frugal vacation to the beach.

Automotive Frugality

car and garage frugalityDo You Really Know How Much It Costs To Own Your Car? by Silicon Valley Blogger @ The Digerati Life. Always think in future terms when you look for a car. Cars that seem cheap now may turn out to be expensive in the long run due to horrible repair and maintainance costs. SVB explains this with a neat breakdown of numbers and types of costs.

How I Saved 37% on My Car Repair Bill by FMF @ Free Money Finance. FMF shares how he used coupons and credit cards to cut down the repair bill on his Subaru Forester.

What You Should Know About Your Local Auto Body Shops by David @ My Two Dollars. A commentary on a Kiplinger’s article about things to consider before visit an auto body shop.

Frugal Meals

bread butter frugal mealCheap Work Lunches @ Cents You Asked. Some ideas to save money on lunch. Hmm…I see Healthy Choice frozen dinners in the list…some people will find that debatable. :)

Tuesday’s Lunch by Viriatha @ Cordova Creations. In this post, the author visits “lunch factor” (on the lines of latte factor) and encourages homemade lunches to cut down on cost and calories.

Last Minute Spring Cleaning? Don?t Forget the Cupboards by John @ Queercents. John characterizes his cooking as a race against expiration dates and shelf lives. Throwing out food is one of the most painful money wasters out there, so he dishes out some frugal advice to make the best of such situations.

Creative Frugality

creative frugalityHow I Decorated My Son’s Room for Under $60 Tricia @ Blogging Away Debt. Tricia tells us how she decorated her son’s room for $59.96 (yeah!…not $60) ;) This post is a fine example of frugality in practice.

Instead of buying expensive border, I used some printable sticker paper to print out construction trucks to cut out and stick on the wall for a border. I also used some stickers to decorate the light switch plate and his bed. Total cost: Probably around $2.00.

What to Do When You Forgot to Read Directions by Frugal Babe @ Frugal Babe. The author had a minor bummer situation that turned into a great example of a creative and a frugal solution to a problem. A $1.50 remedy to hold a storm door glass steady is not bad at all.

Groceries and Shopping Frugality

groceries and fruitsCutting Grocery Costs (without clipping coupons) by Amy L. Fontinelle @ Personal Finance Advice. Amy presents six simple tips to save money on groceries without clipping coupons.

How To Pick Perfect Fruit by Baselle @ Baselle’s Financial Diary. Must read tips on choosing good produce…must read because Baselle is a PhD in Botany. I am sure there are things in this article that you have never heard about before.

Do You Get What You Pay For? by TFM @ Tight Fisted Miser. High price does not equate to high quality. TFM gives examples to make his point:

The recalls of pet food and peanut butter showed that the same manufacturers were making both the store brands and the higher-priced brands. Often the only difference between a store brand and a name brand is the label. In that case when you buy the name brand you are paying for advertising and packaging, not for higher quality.

How To Save Money On Shipping When Shopping Online by Ben @ Money Smart Life. Ben shares some useful tips on lowering your shipping costs when shopping online. Ah…those love-hate feelings about items worth about $2 that require about $8 of shipping.

Bargain Hunting at Outlet Stores @ Ask Mr Credit Card’s Blog. Mrs. Credit Card tells us how she got a good deal on a piece of furniture by buying it through a scratch ‘n dent sale at Pottery Barn.

General Frugality

frugality frugality

Free Money – Small Money Adds Up Big by Steve Faber @ Debt Free. Steve pulls up some numerical examples, again along the “latte-factor” approach, to show how small things can turn in big piles of cash in future. He also considers a couple of big ticket items like HDTV and cruise vacations.

Ask the readers: cheap wedding ideas by Sara Goldstein @ The Bargain Queen blog. Look for frugal wedding suggestions from readers’ comments in this post. Here is an example:

I used wildflowers for the flowers, and the florist was a friend’s mom, so for her labor and the trimmings it was $35. We got married in a little church, and our friend took the photos. Our reception was potluck and Dad provided the bar on his own dime. Another friend played ukelele and sang vaudeville songs on the porch for entertainment.

101 ways to save a dollar by Colleen Caldwell @ Simple Kind Of Life. Colleen points towards a list of ways to save money and shares a few personal thoughts on they are practicing frugality.

…like all families, we’re always looking for a way to save a few bucks. In the past year, we’ve decided to eat out less, shop sales more, and try not to spend money just for the sake of spending money. Sometimes, it’s easier said than done.

Recycling Batteries by Phil @ Phil for Humanity. Did you know that non-rechargeable batteries are not recyclable? Phil encourages us to use rechargeable batteries and do our bit towards the environment.

20 tips to keep from spending money by Beth Dargis @ My Simpler Life. Some practical money saving tips from Beth. Here is one in particular that caught my fancy:

Remember, the thrill is in the hunt of finding the “perfect” thing. Once you buy it, the thrill is gone.

Frugal Art

frugal artWorks for Me Wednesday: Framing Free Art @ The Family CEO. The authors tell us how he decorates his walls by framing free and meaningful prints - like his son’s art class drawing and such.

Recycling Crayons by Melanie Rimmer @ Bean Sprouts. A fun easy way to recycle broken wax drawing crayons into chubby multicolored crayons.

Implied Financial Frugality

money and financial frugalityIrregular Income And Unplanned For Expenses by NCN @ No Credit Needed. NCN describes how he accounts for unplanned expenses. I have a somewhat similar system in place, except that I don’t budget to the penny.

How to Make Your Finances Automagical by Leo @ Zen Habits. Leo has a few tips on putting our financial management on an auto-pilot. Suggestions include automatic fund transfers to an online savings account and automatic bill payment.

Investing Is a Luxury by Peter Maclennan @ Peter Pays Paul. This article is really about investing, but there are some good, generally applicable thoughts towards a financially sound life.

That’s all for this edition of the Festival of Frugality. Click here to submit your article to the 72nd edition to be hosted at Frugal for Life.

Image sources: Think: ed-thelen.org; Soap bubbles: www.lunararchives.com; Vacations: www.ontariosailing.com; Automotive: www.supershuttle.com; Groceries: www.dorsetforyou.com; Bread-jelly: spacebar.blogsome.com; Money: www.bloggingblog.net; Art: www.britishcouncil.org; Creative: www.thehypnosiscds.com; Saving Money: www.mandlers.com

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{ 14 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Super Saver 04.24.07 at 2:49 am


Wow! Quite a number of submissions this time. Excellent Festival. I like the organization.

2 Stephanie 04.24.07 at 3:06 am

Looks like a great and large festival! Thanks for hosting. Wonderful job!

3 Ben 04.24.07 at 3:47 am

Well put together! I agree, being frugal is a balance between being obsessive and being reasonable. Thanks for hosting!

4 Andy 04.24.07 at 4:11 am

Thanks for hosting Golbguru, awesome job!

5 Blain Reinkensmeyer 04.24.07 at 5:41 am

Wow, huge list here Golb! This will take me a while to get through them all, heck, is it even possible?!

Great post!

6 david 04.24.07 at 7:07 am

Thanks for including me and nicely done with the 7 billion articles! Nice job!

7 Cheryl 04.24.07 at 8:50 am

Nice job, love the definitions of frugal living!

8 Peter Maclennan 04.24.07 at 9:53 am

Thanks for including me in the festival. I appreciate it.

9 TF Miser 04.25.07 at 7:06 am

Thanks for hosting. And thanks for highlighting my post!

10 ~dawn 04.25.07 at 7:27 am

Thanks for adding me, that was nice. I like your organization, it is easy to read

11 The Digerati Life 04.28.07 at 7:39 pm

Thanks for hosting this Golb. Sorry I was late in commenting… but heck you did such a great job as usual! Very cool layout!

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