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Monday, February 2, 2009

Bills, Bills, Bills

Alright, that does it! Our electric bill for this month was $220!!!! And for the barn, billed separately, it was $89! What?? It used to be like $16, what the heck happened? As for the house, we don't have electric heat, we have propane, so that is a separate bill (yippee, bleh) but I have no clue how the electric is THAT high! I guess the furnace has been running more (still uses electric for that, not the heat part) because it was so cold the last month but SERIOUSLY?? Its never that high in the summer when we run the air and ceiling fans. And we keep the thermostat at 67 or 68 ALL THE TIME (in winter, summer in the high 70s).

So that brings me to my point. This month I am going to do all I can to not spend any extra money. NONE. No new nothing. Not even food, except for perishibles like milk. I guess this came at a great time. Its the beginning of the month, we just went grocery shopping and our freezer, fridge and pantry cabinet are FULL. So we are going to live off of the food we have. We use cloth diapers and wipes, so no cost there. We have a well so we don't pay for water, just the electric for the pump (and no, I didn't do any more laundry than normal last month!).

So here is what I will do to reduce the electric bill:
  • Air dry the diaper inserts (I already air dry the covers)
  • Make sure I take the clothes out of the dryer when they are done and PUT THEM AWAY so they don't wrinkle and I throw them in the dryer to de-wrinkle (too lazy to iron o_O)
  • Make sure the lights are off if not in use
  • Turn off the computer (that will help me get my chores done too! lol)
  • Turn off the outdoor barn light that stays on during the day because the sensor is broken
  • Keep the porch light off
  • Do the dishes right away so I don't forget and have to fill the sink up again, causing the well pump to run
  • Turn the thermostat down to 65 (eeesh)
If anyone has any other ideas, please let me know!

As for other money saving ideas, I make my own laundry detergent (except for what I use for the diapers), I shop at thrift stores, Once Upon a Child and garage sales and hardly ever buy any NEW clothes unless on VERY good sale or clearance. I try to make most meals from scratch or mostly scratch. I have made my own taco seasoning, bisquik, etc. I can't wait for warmer weather, because I am really going to focus on a garden and growing our own veggies and some fruit this year. I have enough space, better utilize it! But that is for a later post =). I really enjoy finding cheap ways to do things, and it makes me feel like I have accomplished something. Please feel free to share your favorite hints and tips for saving money and being frugal in the comments. I will keep you all updated on the spending for this month. Y'all can be my accountability partners =) Goodnight!


frugalmegan said...

wow! thats no good. i'll bet that electric fireplace thingy isnt helping, although it helps with gas cost. boy, this is one reason it will be hard financially to move to a house...more area to heat and supply electricity to!!

Alison said...

Yeah, I forgot to mention that, but compared to the last couple months bills (when still using the fireplace only at night) this last bill was just crazygonuts! =) So it isn't the problem. Its frustrating, but I think a lot of it is just how cold it is and some lazyness on my part, so I have to do better!

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