Being frugal isn’t always easy. I’ll be honest and admit there are some weeks I’m much more frugal than others. Sometimes I do it all. I shop three different stores, carefully matching coupons to sales prices. I make breakfast from scratch in the morning. I line dry my laundry on nice days.
And then there are other weeks. We hit McDonald’s, instead of eating at home. I realize I’m out of bread, so I run to the nearest store with the highest prices to pick up a loaf. I don’t plan my errands well enough to get gas at Costco, and I end up spending more at a different gas station, because I need gas NOW. But why? Why is it easier to be frugal one week and not another? It comes down to a couple of reasons.
Not Enough Time
Between homeschooling and blogging, I don’t have a lot of free time. What little free time I have, I want to spend with my family. Some weeks are better than others, and I can squeeze everything in. But other weeks are insane. We rush from activity to activity, and I fill in the spare moments with my blogging. It seems on some days I barely have enough time to do a load of laundry at all, much less spend the extra time to hang a load on the laundry line.
Not Enough Organization
More often, a lack of organization is my problem. Yes, I’m busy. That’s a fact. But if I were more organized, lack of time wouldn’t be as much of a problem. For instance, I know there are going to be days that don’t go as planned. That’s a fact of life. If I have dinner in the freezer or pantry ingredients on hand for nights like that, I don’t need to stop by McDonald’s on the way home. But that’s not always the case. Sometimes I’m prepared, and sometimes I’m not.
Adjusting to homeschooling really threw me this year. It took a lot of mental energy to learn a new routine. In the end we excelled at school. I found time to work. But my household organization suffered a big blow. When school is over in three more weeks, I plan on working a little harder on a system to keep the household running smoothly, so I don’t have as many “what now?’” moments.
These are my two top struggles when trying to live frugally. What are yours? Peer pressure? Lack of frugal know-how? Is being frugal easy for you all the time? Or are there weeks when you struggle, too? If you struggle, what seems to trigger it?
Photo by LWY.