Frugalwoods

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How We Bought Inexpensive, Awesome Glasses Online

Mr. Frugalwoods needed glasses. After years of competing over who could discern distant signs on roadtrips first, age finally caught up with my mountain/computer man. Both of his vocations–software engineering and forestry management/homesteading–require the ability to see clearly. As does, you know, life in general. Last year he started getting headaches and complained of blurry vision and so, the time had come. I sent him to the eye doctor. Verdict: his vision isn’t terrible, but it’s...

85

Why Be Frugal? One Word: Options.

Frugality gives you options. I’ve long thought this and I’ve seen it come to fruition in my own life many times. I figured I couldn’t be the only one so I polled our amazing Frugalwoods Facebook group to find out exactly what options frugality has facilitated for all of you fine frugal people. Turns out? Quite a few of you had stories to share and we’ll get to them in a moment. But first, I feel the need...

121

Why We Buy Used Cars And You Should Too

Buying a brand new car has to be one of the worst financial decisions a person can make. I’ve said this before and I continue to harp, even though I know it sounds a tad… oh what’s the word… hardline? Crazy? Like a frugal evangelist? Nevertheless, I persist because it’s one of those purchasing decisions with the power to impact your longterm financial health in a profoundly negative way. My past harping on this topic is enshrined in...

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Reader Case Study: Can We Buy Our Dream Home?

Welcome to this month’s Reader Case Study in which we’ll address Jack and Elizabeth’s question of whether or not to buy their dream home. Case studies are financial dilemmas that a reader of Frugalwoods sends to me requesting that Frugalwoods nation weigh in. Then, Frugalwoods nation (that’d be you), reads through their situation and provides advice, encouragement, insight, and feedback in the comments section. For an example, check out last month’s case study. P.S. Another way to get support on your financial...

35

This Month On The Homestead: Town Meeting, Apple Tree Pruning, and a Pancake Supper

If you’re just tuning in, this is a recurring series in which I document each month of our lives out here on our 66-acre Vermont homestead. After leaving urban Cambridge, MA in May 2016 to chart this wholly different life, we’re experiencing a constant learning curve of exploration (and plenty of stupid novice moments). Check out last month’s installment here. March in Vermont started off with a tease of spring. From the bay window in our living...

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Vegetable Garden Seeds And Other March 2017 Expenditures

While snow storms raged outside all March, inside we planted the seeds for this summer’s vegetable garden. In a cold climate like Vermont (we’re in plant hardiness zone 4 for all you gardening aficionados), it’s necessary to start growing vegetables from seeds indoors. The reason for this is that it won’t be warm enough for a long enough period of time for the veggies to ripen if they’re planted outside. It’ll be too cold too late in the...

85

Deprivation Or Abundance? Turns Out, It’s Your Choice

Seven years ago, Mr. Frugalwoods and I moved to Washington, DC so that I could go to grad school (while working full-time) and Mr. FW could advance in his career. For the previous three years, we’d lived below ground in a sunlight-challenged basement apartment in Cambridge, MA. We were ready to upgrade. Our underground existence made us feel deprived and we thought we deserved something better. We wanted to be above ground, we wanted more than one...

120

How To Find Anything and Everything Used: A Compendium Of Frugal Treasure Hunting

I have a used couch and used cars. And used clothes, used tables, and almost every single thing Babywoods owns is used–from stroller to socks. Even my dog is used (sorry Frugal Hound, it’s true). Just how did I get all of this second-hand stuff? If you’ve ever wondered how to similarly outfit yourself and your family with such illustrious things as a coat from the trash and a dining room table from Craigslist, then today...

121

Moving? Wait Before You Renovate

Moving into a new house is surrounded by as much consumer fanfare as a new baby. There’s a temptation–and a goading by the likes of HGTV–to buy all new furniture, renovate immediately, and deck every wall in a trendy palette. But this urgent wish for everything to be precisely perfect is detrimental to both budgets and longterm planning. Hard as it might be, the frugal route is to bide your time. Impose A Waiting Period Before we...

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Reader Case Study: The Grad School Dilemma

Welcome to this month’s Reader Case Study in which we’ll address Emily’s question of where to attend graduate school. Case studies are financial dilemmas that a reader of Frugalwoods sends to me requesting that Frugalwoods nation weigh in. Then, Frugalwoods nation (that’d be you), reads through their situation and provides advice, encouragement, insight, and feedback in the comments section. For an example, check out a previous Case Study. P.S. Another way to support each other on our financial journeys is by participating in...