Last night it was brought to my attention, through a chat on facebook with an old junior high classmate, that there are people who look down upon those of us who take on the noble profession of housewife. He asked me what I was up to these days, and I answered with, I'm married, living in Southwest Missouri, and I am a housewife. He then continued on with telling me that he didn't believe in women being completely dependent upon their husbands, and that a woman should be able to support herself should something happen (making me think that he is saying that because I am a housewife, I am unable to work or unable to make a living for myself). He also went on to tell me that he and his live in girlfriend both work full time, and are going to school full time to be nurses. The subject slightly changed to how much "work" is involved in being a housewife or house husband (as he told me he would love to be a house husband someday). I told him that most days I do alot harder work than my husband does at his job, although mine is more physically taxing and his is more mentally taxing. This "friend" went on to tell me that house work was not hard, it was not work, it just took time. So.... I decided that I would blog about this tonight. About the hard work that I do as a housewife, and how much money we are saving by doing this hard work, and by me staying at home.
*We hand wash all of our laundry, and hang dry. Most of the time I make my own laundry detergent. By hand washing, the clothes get cleaner, and whiter, and usually they smell cleaner, not of chemicals.
*With me not working, we are able to cut our gas consumption by over 1/2. We walk to run most of our errands, or we ride the local trolley. My husband most of the time walks to work. Mostly the only car running we do is to take him to work on nights that the weather is bad or we're running late, to go to church, to run errands to far away to walk or ride the trolley, or to go out of town. We can usually make a tank of gas last 2-3 weeks, if not longer.
*With me at home, I have time to cook, and cook from scratch. I use the internet for most of my recipes. We do use some convenience as of now, but we are hoping to soon stop using processed foods and do everything from scratch. This not only cuts costs but also is healthier.
*We don't have cell phones. Currently our only bills are Internet, Skype, Electricity, Water and Rent. We pay $43 a month for Internet and roughly $5.45 per month for skype full phone service for the U.S. and Canada. So for less than it would cost us to have landline phone service through AT&T we have internet and home phone.
*Obviously, I coupon. By couponing, I have been able to "buy" free HBC products, free food, and almost free cleaning chemicals. I have been able to donate them and help out friends and family members when they couldn't afford to buy food for themselves. For the past month and a half, I haven't had to buy groceries, and when I did go buy groceries or we went out to eat, it was because it was something that we wanted special. And I still have a freezer full and 2 pantries full of food! When I was working, I didn't have time or energy to do this.
*I make the internet work for me. Currently I have 3 different websites that I use to "make money". I do Inbox Dollars, Mypoints and Listia. Inbox Dollars pays me to check my email, and sends me out a check for $30 when I reach that amount. Mypoints does the same thing, but you rack up points to redeem for gift cards. Listia is an ebay style auction site where you bid points for free items. You can obtain more points by listing items you want to get rid of, among other things. I have been able to get many wonderful things so far through this site. If you would like to join me on any of these sites, please use these urls, as they give me a bonus for people signing up from my site. Inbox Dollars and Mypoints: I have to send a referral email, so contact me. Listia: http://www.listia.com/signup/27823.
Feel free to ask me any questions about these sites, or about any of the other things that I've talked about.
These are the things that I can think of so far, I would like to hear from you, my readers, things that you do to save money. Also, if you are a housewife, how you stand up for this noble choice of staying home to take care of your family.