dishwashing liquid and white vinegar.
Both plain white vinegar and baking
soda are relatively inexpensive, and they
are effective cleaning agents. (Here’s a
website with 1001 tips for using white
Use rags rather than paper towels to
clean, and if you have a Swiffer, make
your own washable cleaning cloths with
rags rather than buying expensive disposable ones. Ask for receipts for tax
purposes when you donate clothing and
other items to charity.
As you clean and declutter and want
a new look to change your décor from
winter to spring, look for seasonal items
at thrift stores, make new covers for your
throw pillows, or frame a free printable,
like those from Pinterest ( pinterest.com/
ing). The day or days that you dedicate
to spring cleaning will help you save time
and energy and avoid stress. Avoid the
cost of a fast-food meal by making dinner first.
Plan for Spring Break and/or
Look for good deals on Groupon. If your
family enjoys sports, consider going to
Don’t use a credit
card, unless you are
100% committed to
paying it off before it
the less expensive (and sometimes free)
spring-training games. Share a cabin or
condo with another family to reduce
costs. Stay at a place where you can bring
and prepare your own food, especially
snack foods and drinks.
Don’t use a credit card, unless you are
100% committed to paying it off before
it accrues interest. Avoid popular tour-
isty venues. Consider a staycation: no
packing, you get to sleep in your own
beds, and if you have small children,
it’s already childproof. Just make each
day special. Suspend a few household
rules, such as bedtimes and non-essen-
tial chores (yours, too, so you can play
with your family). Have a picnic lunch
every day. Take day trips and/or plan a
different, fun activity for each day. Go
out for ice-cream cones every after-
noon. Pretend to travel to a different
country—and don’t call it school. Go
camping—even if it’s in the backyard.
Look for last-minute deals at a hotel
during a weekday. Go to the movies ev-
ery night—in your living room.
Molly Green is passionate about cheerful, creative homemaking on a down-to-earth budget. Visit her online home, www
. Econobusters.com, for tips about frugal
and tasty cooking, fresh decorating ideas,
affordable family fun, simple but effective
organizing, and much more! Sign up for
her free weekly E-Newsletter and get a bonus menu-planning E-Book too!
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