The Survival Mom » Budget Tips http://thesurvivalmom.com Helping moms worry less & enjoy life! Thu, 20 Nov 2014 11:00:40 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.0.1 5 Halloween items to buy for your safety (it’s not what you think!) http://thesurvivalmom.com/5-halloween-items-buy-safety-think/ http://thesurvivalmom.com/5-halloween-items-buy-safety-think/#comments Sat, 01 Nov 2014 06:00:02 +0000 http://thesurvivalmom.com/?p=19103 Did you know there are several Halloween props that can be useful for your safety? I’m not talking about glow sticks and paper products (although those are great to have) – I’m talking about the makeup, body parts and costumes. Read More

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halloween

Did you know there are several Halloween props that can be useful for your safety? I’m not talking about glow sticks and paper products (although those are great to have) – I’m talking about the makeup, body parts and costumes.

Imagine a long power outage where people start scavenging for food. Imagine a long-term lockdown or quarantine where supplies might be in demand or confiscated.

Dress Up for You and Your Home

There could be a time and place where you might want to stage your house to deter unwanted visitors and by scouring the after Halloween sales, you can come up with quite a few supplies for cheap that could be useful.

  • Costumes, wigs, and temporary hair coloring
  • Makeup
  • Fake blood and body parts
  • Caution tape and cobwebs
  • Spray paint

Caution tape and a little makeup could make your house an instant quarantine area.

Various body part decorations could make your house look like it’s already been attacked. Coupled with some caution tape, it’s a crime scene.

Spray paint and cobwebs can make a house look abandoned. And costumes, along with wigs and makeup, can change how a person looks.

Makeup and fake blood could also be used to create various medical conditions that could keep people away or help you get whisked to safety.

Use your imagination …

I’m not advocating out-right lying or deceiving people about serious situations for fun. I’m also not advocating anything criminal, like impersonating a police officer, but how many doctors do you think actually have things like scrubs or a lab coat – “doctor-y clothing” – with them outside of the office? It is entirely possible that you, someone you know, or a stranger you shelter could be an off-duty professional and a few select items could give them some instant credibility for their profession.

A few prop weapons, and you could fake an attack on someone that scares off would-be intruders without actually hurting anyone. Some glow-in-the-dark hair spray, body paint, etc. and it’s suddenly easier to find the kids or follow each other on a path in the darkness. Of course, it’s also easier for others to find you without you seeing them.

If we ever did face desperate times, it could call for desperate measures to keep our loved ones and property safe. If  you needed your kid out of school right now in an emergency and wearing a simple costume like a lab coat or gas mask would make it happen, would you really hesitate?

By making your house look abandoned and already rifled through or already searched by authorities, people may steer clear and move on to another area, keeping you safe. If you wonder why this would be good, just think about what happened in New Orleans post-Katrina.

Go take a look at the Halloween supplies and imagine what ways you could change the look of your home, and possibly even your loved ones.

Have you thought about staging your house? What supplies do you have on hand or would you recommend people getting to change its look?+

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Five Ways to Learn New Survival Skills on the Cheap http://thesurvivalmom.com/learn-new-survival-skills/ http://thesurvivalmom.com/learn-new-survival-skills/#comments Fri, 31 Oct 2014 06:00:01 +0000 http://thesurvivalmom.com/?p=15988 As I say over and over to both new and experienced preppers, skills trump stuff. The more you know, the less you need to buy or carry with you. This knowledge also comes in handy should you need to improvise Read More

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5 survival skills cheapAs I say over and over to both new and experienced preppers, skills trump stuff. The more you know, the less you need to buy or carry with you. This knowledge also comes in handy should you need to improvise a solution to a problem.

The best part is, you can learn new skills without having to spend a ton of dough.

Tap the internet to learn new survival skills

Your first thought is probably, “I can learn it on the Internet.” Between blogs, YouTube, and sites like Instructables, you can learn just about anything you can imagine. However, there are a few other resources that are sometimes overlooked.

Your Local Library (Online Ones, too)

When was the last time you visited your local library? Not only are these vast repositories of knowledge, they frequently hold classes, taught by local experts, on a wide range of topics. Most of these classes are absolutely free to attend. Plus, they are great opportunities for networking with others who may be interested in prepping and such, depending upon the class topic. My library has had classes on such topics as worm composting, basic disaster readiness, and water bath canning.

And today, many libraries – including the Library of Congress – have an online component. Not only can you borrow e-books, but you can reserve items in advance and search to see if you need to go to a specific branch for the items you want. Just Google “online free public library” and check out the search results!

By the way, if you’ve developed an expertise in one area or another, maybe you could offer a class at your own library! Help spread the wealth of knowledge!

Parks and Recs Classes – Local and Beyond

Many municipal park and recreation departments also sponsor classes throughout the year. Some may be free, others require a small registration fee. As with the library classes, these are usually taught by local experts. Locally, I’ve seen classes in self-defense, backyard chickens, and seed preservation.

State and National Parks may also offer classes. We have a local state park that has regular geocaching and outdoor cooking/pioneering classes, among many other offerings.

Auditing Classes

If you have a college, university, or technical school in your area, contact them about auditing classes. For a reduced fee, you can attend the class and learn the material, even take exams, just like any other student in the class. The only difference is you won’t receive official credit for taking the class. Not all schools offer auditing but it is definitely worth the time to inquire. This could be an excellent way to learn advanced first aid skills, for example.

Family, Friends, and Neighbors

Don’t overlook family, friends, and neighbors as resources, too. Grandma Sally would probably be thrilled to spend an afternoon or two showing you how to can chili. If your neighbor built an excellent rain collection system, ask him if he’d be willing to show you how to do it for your house, possibly in exchange for a six-pack or maybe a pan of your famous lasagna.

Of course, all the learning in the world won’t do you much good if you don’t practice the skills regularly. The more often you do something, the more ingrained the knowledge will be in your brain. This leads to quicker recall under pressure, should it come to that.

What resources have you found for free or cheap in your area, online, or in your travels?

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Frugal Fall Planting http://thesurvivalmom.com/frugal-fall-planting/ http://thesurvivalmom.com/frugal-fall-planting/#comments Sun, 28 Sep 2014 06:00:00 +0000 http://thesurvivalmom.com/?p=17788 Great tips here! Pin for later! Fall is not necessarily considered a time for planting, especially for folks in the colder growing zones. However, fall plant sales at your local nursery or greenhouse should not be passed up when thinking Read More

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Frugal Fall Planting - The Survival Mom

Great tips here! Pin for later!

Fall is not necessarily considered a time for planting, especially for folks in the colder growing zones. However, fall plant sales at your local nursery or greenhouse should not be passed up when thinking of long-term food gardens and self-sufficiency needs. These sales give us a great opportunity to purchase plants at a super discount while also allowing the plants time to develop healthy root systems. Use this time of year and the sales provided at greenhouses to look beyond the mums and plan a self-sufficient perennial garden – consider it frugal fall planting for an abundant future.

Fruit & Nut Trees

Fall is a great time to plant fruit and nut trees. Trees begin moving their energy from producing leaves and fruit to using that energy to build deep strong root systems. Look for trees at the nursery that are free of disease and are generally healthy looking. Water well and as often as necessary until cold temperatures set in or the snow begins to fly.
In the spring, your trees should bud and produce leaves. Depending on the variety and age of the tree when purchases it could take several years to produce fruit. It’s a good future investment, as fruit and nut trees can provide much nutrition and calories in a survival situation and are generally good keepers for long-term storage.

Berries

Berries too can be planted in the fall and local greenhouses will likely have these marked way down from their spring prices. Be sure to plant deeply and cover well with mulch to keep tender root systems protected in especially cold climates. Remember to chose location well. Some berries, once they take root, can be a pest, so put them somewhere that won’t disturb the rest of the garden.

Herbs: Culinary & Medicinal

Fall of 2011

There can often be found very good deals in this department. Don’t overlook the plant that is perhaps a little brown or wilted. Take the one that is root bound and marked way down. Often these plants look about dead above the ground but are actually thriving root systems. Plant these deeply into flower and herb beds with a good sized scoop of compost and cover with soil and mulch.

The plant will establish is root system during the winter months and with proper watering and fertilizing come spring likely make a permanent and flourishing home in your garden. I started this herb garden in the fall of 2011 with sale plants from a local nursery.  You can see that in 3 years, it can grow to be rather bushy and productive.3 years

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Prepping for Back to School http://thesurvivalmom.com/prepping-back-school/ http://thesurvivalmom.com/prepping-back-school/#comments Thu, 28 Aug 2014 06:00:49 +0000 http://thesurvivalmom.com/?p=17118   Amidst the joy of summer time swims, cold Popsicles, and sleeping in, the new school year sneaks up on us. I dread the whirlwind back to school shopping as advertisements plague the airways, and other media. I feel my Read More

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Prep_Backtoschool

 

Amidst the joy of summer time swims, cold Popsicles, and sleeping in, the new school year sneaks up on us. I dread the whirlwind back to school shopping as advertisements plague the airways, and other media. I feel my wallet emptying before I even make the shopping list. Not to mention the kids exclaiming, “I must have this one!”

Here are a few things I have learned to prep for back to school season. It will help save money, time, and some sanity.

School Supplies

Every year, we use the same basic school supplies. Most stores overstock these items. I’ve learned to wait until the end of the back to school rush, when the stores mark the items for clearance, then I stockpile crayons, ruled paper, printer paper, composition books, pencils, glue, etc.

Also, the teachers will love you in the middle of the year when they run out of some supplies. With the low cost, I never mind sharing from my stockpile.

My ongoing school supply stockpile also saves us a bit of money each year. With the savings, each child can pick out a few of their “must have” items without breaking the bank.

When picking out a back pack, I spend a little bit more money for one with a lifetime warranty. That way if it gets over filled and breaks a seam, I simply return it for a new one.

School Clothes

One way I save on school clothes is not to buy them only at the back to school sales. Instead I buy clothing year round. At the end of the seasons, when items are on clearance, I try to buy the next size up for the following year. This especially great for basic items like jeans, socks, undergarments, etc. (Side note on underwear: all tightie whities look the same; if you buy every male in the house a different brand, sorting laundry goes sooo much faster.)

On gift giving holidays, I buy each child a new outfit and shoes. I work it into the gift buying budget. This helps balance out the cost of clothing my ever growing brood during the year. Plus, it freshens up their wardrobe.

Online Shopping

Skip all the driving around and shop online. Scoping out deals is a click of the mouse and most websites offer free shipping over a certain amount spent.

I highly recommend Amazon Student. I sit down at the beginning of my college semester, and put in one big order for the kids and myself. With the student discounts and Amazon Prime shipping it is a double win. (Living overseas as a military wife, Amazon Prime has been a true life saver.) Another plus: I can find all my college books used and sell them back later, or I can simply rent and return books.

While online shopping I also use MyPoints.com, a free online points system resulting in gift cards, and RetailMeNot.com. You can look up any website you are shopping at and get online coupon codes. Both of these web sites yield a good return, $5-$25 on average.

Setting a Budget

The most important part of school shopping is setting a budget. Even more important is including the kids. I sit down with them, show them how a budget works, and what our plan of attack is.

They help me compile our supply list. When it comes to the actual shopping part, I usually give them a small budget of their own to buy their wants. The catch is they do the math, and I help them make conscious decisions on quality and usefulness. The rest of the list, which is mostly basics, comes from the stockpile.

Prepping for the school year can be a tedious repetitive task. Enter the new school year fully prepared by creating a small stock pile of the basic necessities. This will save you time, money, and some sanity.

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Survival Survey: Shopping & comparing the dollar stores http://thesurvivalmom.com/survival-survey-shopping-comparing-dollar-stores/ http://thesurvivalmom.com/survival-survey-shopping-comparing-dollar-stores/#comments Mon, 10 Mar 2014 21:30:13 +0000 http://thesurvivalmom.com/?p=13168 Dollar stores can be very useful when looking for items for emergency kits and overall preparedness. I’ve scoured the aisles of various dollar stores and left with everything from office supplies to canned foods. Once I was able to stock Read More

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dollar stores

image by www.CourtneyCarmody.com/

Dollar stores can be very useful when looking for items for emergency kits and overall preparedness. I’ve scoured the aisles of various dollar stores and left with everything from office supplies to canned foods. Once I was able to stock up on a large quantity of Himalayan pink salt.

We haven’t done a Survival Survey in quite a while (where I ask a question and you answer!), but I’m really interested in your experiences with the various dollar stores around the country. The most widespread seem to be:

  • Dollar Tree
  • Family Dollar
  • Dollar General
  • 99 Cents Only
  • Real Deals Dollar Store

How do these dollar stores compare with each other? Do you have any strategies for shopping at certain stores on certain days? What survival and preparedness products have you found?

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52 Week Savings Plan: March prepping bargains to keep your savings on track http://thesurvivalmom.com/52-week-savings-plan-march-prepping-bargains-keep-savings-track/ http://thesurvivalmom.com/52-week-savings-plan-march-prepping-bargains-keep-savings-track/#comments Wed, 05 Mar 2014 17:00:00 +0000 http://thesurvivalmom.com/?p=12972 If you are on the 52 Week Savings Plan, then you are likely looking for super savings on just about everything you buy! The month of March brings with it opportunities to save on all kinds of items that will Read More

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PicMonkey Collage 52 weeks 2.4If you are on the 52 Week Savings Plan, then you are likely looking for super savings on just about everything you buy!

The month of March brings with it opportunities to save on all kinds of items that will help you become more prepared for everyday disasters and worst case scenarios. Here’s a summary along with some helpful links.

(Be sure to print out this chart to track your savings!)

1.  Frozen foods

When you find these at rock bottom prices, especially if you have accompanying coupons, then buy, buy, buy! March is National Frozen Food Month, and you’ll find coupons in the newspaper as well as in the special Sunday coupon fliers.

Why frozen food? Well, you can stock your freezer with frozen veggies and fruits, in particular, but take that a step further and dehydrate those foods for a much longer shelf life. After all, when the power goes out, just how much meat and frozen foods can you eat in a 48 hour time span?

Dehydrating frozen veggies and fruits is the absolute easiest way to preserve food. Spread the frozen food on a dehydrator tray and push the ‘start’ button. That’s it. The foods have already been washed and chopped for you, so you save on all that prep time. For larger pieces of food, broccoli, for example, cut the large pieces in half before dehydrating.

Store your dried food in canning jars along with an oxygen absorber or vacuum pack the jars using something like a Food Saver. Store the jars in a dark, cool place for the longest possible shelf life.

2.  Winter coats and cold-weather gear

Stores want to get rid of this, you want to buy it at super-low prices for next year. It’s a win-win for everyone! Shop online as well as in local brick-and-mortar stores, and be sure to store your winter purchases somewhere where the clothing will be safe from insects.

Also look for items like snow shovels, hand/foot warmers, and ice scrapers.

3.  Craft supplies

March is National Craft Month, so look for coupons to stores like Michael’s, JoAnne, and Hobby Lobby. You may find products to organize your emergency supplies, plain t-shirts (buy the kids brightly colored ones so they’ll be easy to find in a crowd), yarn and other supplies for crochet and knit, sharpies, supplies to keep kids busy during power outages, and super glue.

4.  St. Patrick’s Day treats

If you love corned beef, cabbage, and potatoes, then this is your month! All these foods can be canned, and both cabbage and potatoes are easily dehydrated.

To can corned beef, you’ll need a pressure canner. Although this gigantic pot looks intimidating, canning expert Diane Devereaux says that canning meat and chicken is the easiest thing to can. Here are two recipes to get you started:

5.  Spring cleaning supplies

Again, watch for coupons and store sales, but for some reason, product manufacturers think that all of us will be spending our beautiful spring days indoors, busily scrubbing and cleaning…stuff.

image by Pink Sherbet PhotographyThat’s not my idea of fun, but you will likely find very good prices on all sorts of cleaning supplies for stocking up. Some to use now and some to set aside as part of your preparedness efforts.

6.  Junk food

March brings with it March Madness and with it, discounts on all sorts of junk food for sports fans. The only effective way to lengthen the shelf life of junk food is to repackage it, either in canning jars using a food vacuum sealer or in jars/mylar pouches with oxygen absorbers.

If your family typically eats junk food and you can find it at super low prices, you might as well stock up, keep it under lock and key, and then use it up over a period of a few months time. As long as it’s stored in a cool, dark location that is free from pests, the food should last at least 6 months.

7.  Easter ham

Follow these instructions for canning ham, so you’ll have it all year long. Go ahead and freeze some as well, but be sure to cut it into meal-size chunks before freezing.

If you can, hold off on buying Easter candy until after Easter. That’s when you’ll be able to scoop up bags of pastel colored M&Ms and boxes of Peeps. Why stock up on candy? They’re comfort foods for a lot of people and can be vacuum sealed for a nice long shelf life.

8.  Produce in season

Continue to think canning and dehydrating while watching for best prices on these foods:

Keep saving your coins and dollars and stay on track with your 52 Week Savings Plan!

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52 Week Savings Plan Revisited http://thesurvivalmom.com/52-week-savings-plan-revisited/ http://thesurvivalmom.com/52-week-savings-plan-revisited/#comments Mon, 10 Feb 2014 18:42:05 +0000 http://thesurvivalmom.com/?p=12952 Last year in January I posted this article on a 52 week savings plan. I want to encourage all of you to try it again this year! Even though it’s the second week of February, don’t panic! It’s not too Read More

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Last year in January I posted this article on a 52 week savings plan. I want to encourage all of you to try it again this year! Even though it’s the second week of February, don’t panic! It’s not too late to start! According to the plan, by the last week of January, all you needed to have saved was $15. Add $7 more for the first week of February, and you’re completely caught up until the end of this week when you’ll want to put $8 more aside. If you stick with it, you’ll have $45 saved by the last Saturday of the month and you’ll be off to a great start. After completing the full plan, you’ll have a nice pile of cash ($1378 in all) ready for anything from car emergencies to a small vacation!

52 Week Savings Plan

Don’t worry if you’ve never done much saving before. As I wrote about previously here, you aren’t alone. However, that doesn’t change the importance of saving money. The 52 week savings plan is a great way to get started on saving even if you have very little experience.

So how ’bout it? Will you commit to setting aside some money every week for the next year? Have you ever done this plan or a similar plan in the past? Join the discussion at the SurvivalMom forum!

Download this cool savings chart here.

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New VIDEO conference! “Frugal Back-to-School” TONIGHT! http://thesurvivalmom.com/new-video-conference-frugal-back-school-tonight/ http://thesurvivalmom.com/new-video-conference-frugal-back-school-tonight/#comments Tue, 03 Sep 2013 20:20:35 +0000 http://thesurvivalmom.com/?p=12416 There’s something new and very cool in the Survival Mom’s bag ‘o tricks! Beginning tonight, Tuesday, September 3, we are beginning a series of video classes for you. Everyone is invited! Tonight’s Video Vibe is all about beginning the school Read More

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moneyThere’s something new and very cool in the Survival Mom’s bag ‘o tricks! Beginning tonight, Tuesday, September 3, we are beginning a series of video classes for you.

Everyone is invited!

Tonight’s Video Vibe is all about beginning the school year on a budget. How do you save money on school supplies, groceries for packing lunches, clothes, and more? This is the time of year when parents are hit hard with sports fees, the cost of school uniforms, expenses for extracurricular activities, textbooks, and the list goes on and on!

Join our panel of experts, who will share creative ideas for saving money, not just this month but throughout the year!

Donna Miller hosts “Surviving on Shoestrings” and will be talking about ways for families to cope during tight times and timely money-saving tips.

Gary Foreman is a former financial planner and the founder of The Dollar Stretcher. This man knows every trick in the book for saving money and establishing a sound financial future for your family.

Scott Fitterman‘s area of expertise is using the internet to track down online bargains. He’s the founder of Coupon Cactus.

I invite you to be a part of this live, fun event!

Here is the link you need to click on, just a few minutes before our start time: http://fuze.me/21163135

To really enjoy the full video interaction, that link will ask if you’d like to download the Fuzebox app. Do it! It’s super quick and will make a lot of difference.

SPACE IS LIMITED!

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7 Food Wasting Sins! Confessions from a former food waster http://thesurvivalmom.com/7-food-wasting-sins-confessions-from-a-former-food-waster/ http://thesurvivalmom.com/7-food-wasting-sins-confessions-from-a-former-food-waster/#comments Thu, 24 Jan 2013 10:57:24 +0000 http://thesurvivalmom.com/?p=11010 Guest post by Heather who blogs at Prudent Pantry. I was once a young wife and mother to a toddler. Hard at work learning to be a good wife and mommy. I got to stay at home which meant I Read More

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Guest post by Heather who blogs at Prudent Pantry.

I was once a young wife and mother to a toddler. Hard at work learning to be a good wife and mommy. I got to stay at home which meant I made meals 3x a day for my family. I was a house wife. I had a food budget and yet I found myself calling my husband once or twice a week to pick up meals.

Old inedible foodWhen I went to my Mommy & Baby group I found that several families with double the amount of kids had grocery bills less than mine! How could this be?

Frankly I was confused. I didn’t know where I was going wrong. I had been raised in a variety of settings due to my parent’s divorce and remarriages. We always seemed to be learning to live somewhere new. I was never taught how to actually run a home.

It took time to admit it to myself but I was a food waster. I realized that I was making critical mistakes with our food starting with: what to feed my family: what to buy at the grocery store: how to cook at home: and very importantly how to put away our food.

1-      I was wasting our food money. I am a cookbook hound. I love looking at the yummy recipes in those glossy books and trying to recreate them. That is nice but most call for food that is WAY outside the budget of a college student’s family. Instead of using that money more wisely and stretching it over the full month I was buying high priced items that cut days off how far our food budget would go.

2-      I bought ONLY name brand items. This was a hang over from my upbringing when we could not afford name brand. Deep inside I saw being able to buy name brand as showing the world (or myself) that we had stepped up in the world. Again I was wasting our food money.

3-      Cooking low quality food. I had these lovely highlights of dinners that were great. But in order to get those highlights I had to skimp in other areas. That meant that Monday through Thursday meals were just scrapped together or Hamburger Helper type meals. Not healthy and not yummy. Made it that much easier to call for take-out when faced with day 2 of not so good food.

4-      Cooking too much food for our size family. At the time I had no extra freezer and we really were 2 adults eating with a toddler just nibbling. I tended to cook for a much larger crowd. That meant we tended to overeat, not healthy. Also there was a lot of food leftover. That food would generally go into the fridge and a meal of left overs might come from it but in general it was shoved to the back of the fridge and forgotten until it crawled out and pleaded to be put out of its misery.

5-      Chaos is not a good form of organization. As you can tell from the food lost in the fridge my kitchen was in a state of chaos. There was no organization. I had no idea if cans were old or spices were out of date. You just pawed through the shelf in question until you found what you were looking for, or gave up and went out and bought it again. Yeap, back to that wasting the food budget.

6-      Using food to its greatest extent! I never thought to use the turkey bones and pieces leftover from Thanksgiving to make a broth. I didn’t use the ham bone to flavor a pot full of beans. When I was done with the meal immediately in front of me I threw out the rest and cleaned up for the night.

7-      The worst food wasting sin I committed was sheer laziness. There were times when I woke up the next morning and found that I had set last night’s leftovers aside but never put them away.

Acknowledging that I had these blind spots was the first step in correcting them. There is no shame in not having been told how to cook, maintain a home, raise a family, or homestead. Many of us have holes in our skills base. Consider how to run your kitchen, food budget, and food storage as another skill that needs to be worked on. Find a mentor. Search out a great blog or book. You can change from a food waster to a thrifty foodie mom!

 

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Facebook Sharing: Stocking up on books http://thesurvivalmom.com/wfacebook-sharing-stocking-up-on-books/ http://thesurvivalmom.com/wfacebook-sharing-stocking-up-on-books/#comments Wed, 19 Sep 2012 10:00:57 +0000 http://thesurvivalmom.com/?p=10230 It’s super easy to list must-have survival books and non-fiction manuals, but recently a reader left a comment on the blog about the importance of reading to escape. So far, the U.S. Army Survival Manual hasn’t caught my imagination and Read More

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It’s super easy to list must-have survival books and non-fiction manuals, but recently a reader left a comment on the blog about the importance of reading to escape. So far, the U.S. Army Survival Manual hasn’t caught my imagination and carried me away to fantastical, fairytale locations.

So, I asked the Facebook crowd where they go to find cheap, or even better,free books, and they came up with a very creative list. Here it is:

  • From Rachel: “Thrift stores and yard sales are good options.”
  • Bonnie said, “Our library usually has a ‘free’ table.”
  • From Victoria: “Our library has a sale once a year, most books are 25 cents. Aside from that, I utilize our library for books/movies/dvds. Also get ones from my mother that she has read and wants to get rid of!”
  • From Erik: “Library sales, Goodwill, Salvation Army, thrift stores, yard sales. Every year where I live they have a giant free book giveaway at an old nearby mall. Also college book stores dump thousands of old textbooks out at the end of every semester.”
  • Michelle says, “There are loads of free books available for Kindles. I know paper books are important too, in case of grid issues, but it is an option. I’ve gotten quite a few free cookbooks with great prep info (canning books, how to feed a family cheaply, etc.) free. They also have lots of the classics free. I don’t have a Kindle but I loaded the free program to be able to read them on my PC. For paper books I would say Goodwill, yard sales, library sales. I can come out of Goodwill with a whole bag of books for my kids for under $10.”
  • From Smallacre Homestead: “Ever since the economic crises started, there have been a lot of “resale” stores popping up, usually run by charities (i.e. Catholic charities). One of those nearest us has a large book section. Hubby has been perusing Amazon for the 1 cent books, but the shipping is almost as much as buying a new paperback.”
  • David’s tip: “I have found that Amazon Kindle has a ton of free books for download. I figured out that you can search for specific genres the same as you do a Google search. For example, Search for kindle + free + homesteading and I found about 30+ free books on the subject. I save these books on an SD card in a tablet with the free Kindle app downloaded. Yard sales usually yield good results as well.”
  • From Erik: “At recycling centers sometimes they will let you have books if you ask.”
  • Margaret says, “Sometimes you can find people giving away free books on Craigslist. Check the “free section.”
  • Bethanne shared this link for free Kindle books.
  • From Lola: “Our local library has a paperback exchange… you can take as many paperbacks from that section as you want, and either replace them with books you have read or not.”
  • Carol shared this: “Garage sales, thrift stores, but also sales at bookcloseouts.com and also freebies/ cheapies for kindle. If you get a solar recharger for it, the kindle can be a very portable way to store a lot of books.”
  • Gayle is already prepared, “Too funny!  This past summer I started accepting the libraries trash books. Classics actually, they said no one reads anymore and were going to throw them in the trash. I figured I’d add them to my stash because frankly I love books. I never thought about entertainment for the apocalypse lol! I am glad my selfish side can now be justified! Thank you!”
  • Greg/Teresa said, “Best place is Swap.com - all you pay is the shipping for the media form you are mailing.

Don’t forget books for the kids. Even if your kids are little, go ahead and buy chapter books for reading aloud. I read the Magic Tree House series to my two long before they could read that level of book on their own, and I’m currently reading Robinson Crusoe to my son. Oh, and don’t forget audio books!

Do you have other tips for free/cheap books? And, if you haven’t ‘Liked’ The Survival Mom Facebook page, join in! That’s where you’ll find all kinds of discussions, tips from readers, newsworthy articles, inspiring quotes and a lot more.

 

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