“A Penny Saved is a Penny Earned”

I love this famous idiom by Benjamin Franklin because it sums up my new “job” in our household.  I am no longer helping to earn a living to add to the family budget but instead have been left the responsibility of “saving” a living.  Every penny not spent is another penny that is added to a savings account to be used for a greater purpose.

This week I was fortunate enough to snag a free Kindle book from Amazon titled “The American Frugal Housewife” by Lydia Maria Francis Child published in 1832.  Wow, how the world has changed when it comes to viewing a frugal home!  I haven’t had a lot of free time to read the entire book, but what I have devoured has really been eye-opening to say the least.  I love her opinion of what economy really is!

In early childhood, you lay the foundation of poverty or riches, in the habits you give your children.  Teach them to save everything, – not for their own use, for that would make them selfish – but for some use.

Economy is generally despised as a low virtue, tending to make people ungenerous and selfish.  This is true of avarice; but it is not so of economy.  The man who is economical, is laying up for himself the permanent power of being useful and generous.  He who thoughtlessly gives away ten dollars, when he owes a hundred more than he can pay, deserves no praise, – he obeys a sudden impulse, more like instinct than reason: it would be real charity to check this feeling; because the good he does maybe doubtful, while the injury he does his family and creditors is certain.  True economy is a careful treasurer in the service of benevolence; and where they are united respectability, prosperity and peace will follow. (pp. 136, 149)

Why are we in the process of trying to sell our nice, comfortable home and move out to 20-acres of nothingness?  Why are we cleaning out closets, cabinets, shelves etc. and selling as much as possible?  Why are we investing our time and energy in researching alternative water, electric, heating and cooling elements for the home we are in the process of building ourselves on that plot of nothingness?  The list goes on and on with questions the public might ask when they see the lifestyle the Tim Kinnard family has adopted.  The answer is this – we are doing all these things so we can live debt free therefore freeing our resources to then help those around us to the best of our ability and along the way teach our children the value of hard work and the joy of giving.

In the spirit of “saving a few pennies” here is what I’ve been up to recently….

A few days ago a family member gave me a huge bag full of yellow squash and a ginormous zucchini.  There was no way my family could eat all of the squash before it went bad, so I found a way to preserve the vegetables so that none would be wasted.  Considering the fact that yellow squash is on sale for $0.99/lb. right now this gift saved us around $10.  Yay! 

The one zucchini was enough to get 6 cups when shredded.  I froze two packages of 2 cups each then used the remaining 2 cups to make 2 loves of fresh zucchini bread that day.  The frozen shredded zucchini will make either 4 more loaves of bread or 2 large cakes.





I washed and cut up all the yellow squash leaving a medium container full inside the refrigerator to use as a side dish to go along with tonight’s dinner.

I am still loving my little FoodSaver gadget I purchased a few months ago using a printed $10 off coupon.  The best part is that it works GREAT with the Ziploc brand vacuum seal bags which are a fraction of the price compared to the FoodSaver bags.  At Amazon you can get a box of 34 FoodSaver quart bags for $14.99 ($0.44/each) with free shipping.  Using a coupon at Kroger along with the sale price, I picked up this box of 12 Ziploc bags for only $2.49 ($0.20/each).

If I end up having an abundance of veggies to freeze this summer, I will go ahead and process them by steaming for 3-5 minutes then blanching in order for them to keep up to 12 months inside the deep freeze.  Simply washing and cutting up before freezing will only give them about a 3-month freezer shelf life.


2 thoughts on ““A Penny Saved is a Penny Earned”

  1. I just started reading that the other day, and I was surprised at how little has really changed since the 1830’s. Her advice is still relevant, and the people she used as her examples, were just the same as people today!

    • I know! Of course some of it had me laughing out loud like the part where she says, “Don’t be wasteful and only purchase vinegar by the gallon. Purchase it buy the barrel or at least by the half barrel.” Hahaha!

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