Being Frugal Doesn't Equal Being a Tightwad

I found this article on how the recession affects frugal people interesting.  It details how some frugal people are becoming even more frugal because of the recession while others are discovering frugality.  It even had a mention of which is a great blog on frugality.

I do object to them calling frugal people cheapskates and tightwads though.  I suppose I don’t have much room to object given that I use the name Tight Fisted Miser.  The name is meant to be tongue-in-cheek and I am not sure if the article intends their labels in the same way.  One person in the article did refer to himself as a cheapskate.  Overall though I think the headline equating tightwads and cheapskates with being frugal sends a negative message.  I see frugality as a positive, not a negative, regardless of whether there is a recession.

Eating on $1 a Day

There has been a lot of press lately about a couple who ate on $1 a day for a month. This is an interesting project that has been done by several people before.  I’m not sure why this one has been getting so much attention.  I did a similar project last May and spent $31.60 on food for a month.   I got the idea to do so from Hungry for a Month that did the $1 diet in November 2006.

The results of both projects were similar.  They were able to eat for that amount but it wasn’t easy.  They also remarked that they weren’t able to eat very healthy.  Looking at their menus though I think they probably ate healthier than the average American.  It definitely isn’t easy to eat on $1 a day and I’m glad I don’t have to.  Next year I’m going to try to spend $0 on food for a month if I can get it planned out.

Five Free Frugal Resources

When you’re trying to be frugal getting something for free is a big help. Here are some great free resources that won’t cost you a dime.

  1. The Public Library- You can get books free here and also music and movies. My local library charges a dollar for movies but the books are still a good deal.
  2. 1-800-Free-411- I just recently found about this.  I just avoided using directory assistance before but now take advantage of this free deal. You just have to listen to a short advertisement before you get your information.
  3. Mint,GnuCash,PearBudget,etc.- There is lots of free money management software out there. I use PearBudget right now since my finances are pretty simple. I’m thinking of upgrading to more detailed software though.
  4.,,,etc.- These are sites where you can legally watch TV shows and movies at your own convenience online. With these sites you really don’t need cable.
  5. At this site you can take language lessons online for free. There are many other free language learning sites out there.  I haven’t tried these yet but learning a foreign language is on my list of things to do someday.

Those are just a few of the free frugal resources available. There are lots of things you can do for free.