In order to enjoy my retirement to the fullest, I need to make frugality (both active and passive) part of my lifestyle. For the most part, this frugality fits in seamlessly with my days, and I barely notice those frugal things, because they are pretty ingrained and generally not such a chore. Sometimes retirement frugality is more out of the box, and sometimes, it's even an effort. It is, however, rarely a chore, and rarely does it truly inhibit me from doing what I want to do.
A fellow blogger regularly writes a column entitled "five frugal things". In this case, I figured I would take a leaf out of her book and share the regular-and irregular things that have happened this week to keep my budget in check, as well as one, well, not so frugal thing!
- As is my regular habit most weeks, I had a full social life while spending little money. My knitting, book and game groups are all part of various meetups or newcomers group, where the cost of attendance is generally a latte or a single happy hour wine. This makes my weekly round up of fun very cheap, except for discounted supplies for knitting or sewing.
- I self-entertained cheaply as well. I'm taking a free Craftsy class, two in fact (one on learning to design and sell patterns and one on cake decorating). I just finished binging on the first season of Bosch (yes that's Harry Bosch) on Amazon and am working my way through those Midsommer Murders on Netflix. This is not a "free" activity as I pay an annual membership on one side, and a monthly membership on the other side. However since I do watch TV and movies, this cost saves me a great deal over my movie outings. Add that to my NY Times Sunday crossword, two kindles books and my sewing and designing and I've had a busy week.
- I did go to a real movie, at a matinee, using a Christmas gift card and my rewards card. My next visit will be free with my rewards. I don't mind going to the movies at a matinee, as I enjoy the quiet, and can spread out my snacks and coat to the next chair. My new favorite theater has fully reclining seats.
- I grabbed a few freebies during my quick online daily perusal. Today these included a free Cadbury creme Easter Egg, a free advance ticket to the Will Smith movie Focus, free Krispy Kreme donuts, a free Redbox rental, and a free coke coupon
- I downloaded a $10 off $25 at JC Penney coupon. I do this every week, although I don't use it unless I have a reason to go near that store. Their Foundry for big and tall men offer extra long sizes from size large onward, which means eventually I will have a pile of long sleeved turtlenecks and shirts to gift my son-which actually tuck in past his long torso.
- I used the Retail Me Now app on my phone to check for any instant coupons when I went into Joannes to get thread-I have a variety of apps on my phone offering discounts and deals that I keep handy, and lets me cut less coupons.
- I chose not to make reservations for restaurant week, when all the best restaurants have a multi-course dinner for $30.00. My readers know that I LOVE gourmet food. However the best dishes are often not available during restaurant week, and my goal is to eat well in Seattle, so for now I will forgo that temptation!
- As mentioned elsewhere, we are painting the living room and hall-with Sherwin Williams paint purchased with a coupon. Discounted paint, a few hours dusting and cleaning walls and floor on Saturday, and painting on Sunday has saved an enormous amount of money.
- As always, I spent a few minutes each day grabbing the above mentioned deals, checking loss leader grocery prices and more. This week, very few things were at my "best price" so my grocery shopping will be limited to produce and dairy products and a few other things.
- I had two medical tests: a thyroid sonogram and a trans-vaginal sonogram. My total copay for these was forty dollars. This was less a frugality issue than a good insurance issue, but a money saving one never the less. Now to get up the nerve to do that colonoscopy prep.
- Finally, I downloaded a forty five minute exercise program from U-tube. Exercise is important to health and can be worth paying for. This one is probably both a time and money issue, as I arise at 9:30 or later, and often miss the exercise classes. For now, that online class, plus some walking will fill my exercise needs.
And so it's gone, this week in retirement!