This was a monthly feature back in 2015 on the blog and while I enjoyed it, I haven’t decided if I’m ready to bring the feature back. What do you think? I do know that January was a good month for saving money and so I wanted to share the little and big ways I saved, complete with Instagram pictures as fun, frugal proof.
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I cashed out $21 from Checkout 51 and redeemed several offers from Ibotta. If you haven’t started using coupon apps, now is a great time to start! Ibotta is my go-to coupon app but I use a couple others too. Checkout 51 is slow and steady but I was very happy to cash out with money for my grocery budget! Savings: $24
I borrowed the Magnolia Story from the library as well as several other books. I had been on the hold list for months (I think I was 82 in line?) so I was very excited when the book arrived. I read it in less than 24 hours and I now love the Gaines more than ever. What a great story and family! Add it to your reading list, friends. Savings: $15
I redeemed another Amazon gift card from Swagbucks. I am determined to use Swagbucks more again this year and earn the free money. This post goes into detail about how I earn on Swagbucks. It does take some time but I love getting free money to spend on my Christmas shopping. It’s a perfect little bit for us stay-at-home moms when every penny counts! Savings: $25
I used that Amazon Swagbucks gift card to buy a generic $8 toner refill for our laser printer. We bought a wireless laser printer (similar to this) on a good sale several years back and it has proved to be a great purchase. Not only do we get quick, clear prints but the toner lasts forever! We go through one refill a year and I’ve found that the generic ones work really well, too. I highly recommend spending a bit more on a laser print initially to save on ink down the road. Savings: $20
I shopped Christmas clearance and my best finds were at Meijer. My handy father-in-law built us a beautiful mantel for Christmas and so we picked up stocking holders for 70% off after Christmas. I also managed to pick up a new rug for our front door at 90% for only $1! Why a plain rug with some silver accents was Christmas decor is beyond me, but I happily snatched up the bargain! We also bought tins, Christmas lights, extension cords, wrapping paper, cupcake liners, and even soap on Christmas clearance. Savings: $100
I bought 9 containers of Mrs. Meyers soap for only $0.52, thanks to RecycleBank and One Twine. You see, years ago, I used to participate in RecycleBank, an online program where you earned points for answering surveys and clicking on Recycling facts. I hadn’t touched my account in over a year but received an email from them and decided to check my points. I discovered I could cash out half my points for a $50 to One Twine. One Twine had some pricey things but I did discover all their Mrs. Meijer soaps were $5.61. Now, there is no way that frugal me would every pay that much for a soap – unless I had a free gift card! So, I added 9 to my cart which took me right over $50. Plus, shipping was free if you spent $50. So, after gift cards, I only had to pay $0.52 to get all these soaps shipped to my door. Savings: $50
I stocked up on Huggies diapers with coupons and catalinas. Neither worked as perfectly as they should have (as you may have seen in my grocery posts), but I saved $21 on diapers in coupons and then earned $20 in catalinas on those 8 packages of diapers. Savings: $40
I updated my entire wardrobe thanks to some generous hand-me-downs from a mom at church. I went through 5 bags of hand-me-downs that were just my size and style. What an amazing gift! And the things I didn’t keep, I was able to pass onto another friend who kept quite a bit, too. I loved all the cute tops and tee-shirts but I was especially excited to get several pairs of jeans that actually fit me! Savings: $150
Our family traveled to Nebraska for a long weekend and stayed with friends on all three nights we were away. You see, my husband and I graduated from Concordia Seward. It’s part of the Lutheran system of 10 colleges. Every January, 4 of the colleges have a basketball tournament. My husband has been to 19 in a row and Nathan hasn’t missed one yet (in 3 years – ha). So, we loaded up the car and made the 11 hour drive to Seward. It was so good to see dear teacher friends, who had moved to Iowa, as well as college friends, and several of my cousins who are now at college. We got lots of good visiting in and saved on hotel money! Savings: $300
Now, those were obviously some big events mixed in with the little things. But where you adding it up? I was amazed to see that I saved $715 from these 9 things. And that’s not counting all the other coupons I used, the Mperks I redeemed, the day out with my friend Andrea where I spent only gift cards…it really is amazing how the savings add up.
January was a good month for savings! Now, let’s see how we do in February as we get ready to start our first ever no spend challenge. Want to join in with us and see how much you can save? The details are all here.
What was your best source of savings in January?