Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Making Do?

As a frugal retiree, I consider myself to be frugal rather than a tightwad. Admittedly, on some occasions I can be extremely frugal.  However, I pride myself on not being "tight", mainly as that is not how I choose to live my life. You'll never see me wearing my socks after they have holes, or even darning them. While I may re-purpose the socks into rags or anyone of a dozen other things, trust me, they are out of my drawer.

There are definitely things I don't spend money on, that I have identified here on more than one occasion. Some of the things I don't spend money on are things that would be important to others but not to me-expensive make-up and grooming, eating out multiple times a week, and other things. There are also those things I don't buy because there are too many free alternatives-such as my trusty library, where I can get both digital books and old fashioned paper books for free (as well as movies, games, and more).

For the rest though, I simply prefer to find good quality things at the cheapest price, rather than do without. Socks are bought on sale with coupons added and hopefully with gift cards I've earned through rewards. Instead of giving up on the movies I go during the weekday and unashamedly use my senior discount (and also my movie rewards card which gives me both discounted munches and a free ticket every so often). You get the idea.

Which is why I had to laugh recently when my son looked at me and said "Mom, why don't you just go and get some winter nightgowns?".  You see, before I moved from Texas to Colorado, I had purchased a huge amount of sleepwear, all of which are short sleeved knee length silk nightgowns, appropriate for the temperature. Then I got to Denver, where I truly met cold weather again, as I have the past week. Denver weather is psychotic, in that it can be seventy five in January, and yet April is the snowiest month. All you folks elsewhere who say things like "Wait two hours and the weather will change", have yet to live in a place where, because of the mountains, the weather can drop forty degrees in fifteen minutes.

Anyway, to get back to the tightwadish-ness at hand:  In the three years I have lived in Denver, I have bought a whole two pairs of winter sleepwear. Trust me, this is not because I am always warm, I am the girl who keeps her house at 74 in the winter and 68 at night. Rather, I did not want to waste that couple dozen of expensive mild weather night gowns. Instead, I had two long sleeved fairly lightweight sweaters that had been purchased at Walmart and given to me. Having cold feet, I also have a veritable plethora of those fuzzy socks. So up until now, I have slept with a sweater over summer nightgowns and fuzzy socks as needed.  Next year, I'll probably have to actually get some velour or flannel pajamas or gowns. Meanwhile, this works for me, as strange as it looks or sounds. And since I'm fairly new to sleepwear in general  (my late husband was one of those people who gave off  heat like an oven, requiring me to only have something warm for when I got out of bed), comfort is of the most importance.

When I began visiting my family in Denver while in Germany and Dallas, I had purchased my own bed for the guest room. Being a person who needs a really firm bed and lots of pillows, I purchased my own firm bed and basic bed frame without headboard to replace the guest room futon. It worked at the time.  In Dallas, I ended up selling my expensive bedroom set (with large sleigh bed, double wide end tables, and a four drawer wide dresser with mirror) before I moved.  Remember, I thought I was moving into a condo with small to moderate bedrooms. Since then, I have been sleeping on the expensive, firm mattress I bought-on a bed frame with wheels that are blocked. I ended up taking two large sofa pillows from a couch set partially left behind, and pilling up the pillows against them-all against the wall. At the time I thought it was a temporary solution. I still have not purchased the bed frame. Heck, I have not even looked for one. This temporary rigging has been so comfortable (and actually looks so very good) that I have never bothered to date to serious look for a solution.

Now, if you asked me, I would probably not say that either solution is "making do". Rather I would say, "But this works for me". The end result though is that I have avoided a new purchase-whether deliberately or accidentally I'm not sure.

In the end I expect, it goes back to priorities, as does all spending. It is what it is.

Meanwhile, I'm off to get a few more socks. It is sandal weather, but I need them for working out. And while I'm there, I may even look for queen sized bed frames-who knows!


  1. I agree wholeheartedly! We sold a large bedroom set when we moved back to CO and still don't have a headboard, our spare bedroom has a freezer and pantry in it which is much more useful to me than another bed,we don't get visitors anyway. I love the "It works for me"

  2. Sleeping in comfort is important! I have chronically cold feet and have used a corn bag, heated in the microwave, to keep my feet warm at night. Just love it.

  3. I think we have similar attitudes to spending money and to saving money. Some things for us are must haves, such as healthy food, often organic, and favorite books.

  4. I agree with you and everyone else. I'm making my money go as far as it can but if I love it and/or really need it, then it gets a good consideration.


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