There are so many sites and blogs around the internet about being frugal and saving money which started me thinking... again... How much money do I actually save in a year by doing things myself? Curiosity is something I seem to have a large supply of these days. Must be the short days and too much time to think.
Lets start with bread. I know living way up here I no doubt would spend much more than many of you but since I'm looking at my local area here goes.
Plain 60% whole wheat bread the cheapest possible on sale - $2.50 each - The kind we like - $4.50 each. We eat on average 3 loaves of bread a week, which is from $390/year for the cheapest to $702/year for the one we will actually eat. After taking quite a long time to calculate I figured out that making my own bread cost $1/loaf. Which works out to $156/year and even cheaper if I use my own eggs when the hens are laying. My savings on bread alone are between $234 to $546 a year.
What else? Pizza! Every Friday is pizza night. If we were to go out to eat it would cost probably in the range of $40? Not sure here as we only eat out if we are travelling. Hmm... Well, lets say we purchased a nice ready made pizza? After all its not like we can order in way out here! I have seen them on sale for $5 but usually they are in the $7 range or higher. Not to mention mine are a lot bigger. Home made Pizza dough .58 cents, Cheese (one sale) $1.50, sauce (home made) .50 cents, (almost free if I use home grown tomatoes.) Of course the toppings are subject to your likes and dislikes so I have done this using just a plain cheese pizza. Total cost? $2.58. In one year I have saved between $125.84 and $229.84. Of course if we had chosen to eat out once a week we would have spent at least $2000. Not to mention the gas to get there!
While most of the week we eat pretty healthy Mountain Man does have a sweet tooth which I indulge once a week. He used to buy doughnuts every weekend as a treat, so when I asked him if he would mind me making something for him instead he was game. His favorite recipe is my Welsh Scones. I've made homemade doughnuts many times but he always asks for the scones. Go figure! Not what I would choose but this is about what he likes. I like salty more than sweet but since I love baking I sure don't mind making it for him. The scones cost $1.26 per batch. Which is 8 scones. If I was to purchase even a six pack of his favorite doughnuts it would cost $4. In one year I save $142.48.
So, three items which I bake on a weekly basis have saved us between $502.32 and $918.32 a year... Not a bad start! I wonder how much I save by growing and canning our vegetables? That is a post for another day! Right now my head hurts from all the figuring.......
Are you striving to live a more fugal lifestyle? How do you save money? I'd love to hear from you.