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Special Note...

Not every article in this newsletter will apply to you and your family. Our content will change monthly, so pick out the parts that work for you and skip over the rest.



Segment 1 - Editor's Letter

Segment 2 - What's New At

Segment 3 - Thrifty Summer Decorating

Segment 4 - Free Stuff

Segment 5 - Getting Finances In Order - Part 7

Segment 6 - Thrifty Living Tips: 7 Ways to Cut Expenses on Your Next Backyard Barbeque

Editor's Letter -

As the weather gets warmer, and in some places muggier, I was contemplating the many ways people can save money and live thriftier. There's always the obvious, turn the air conditioning up or, at the very least, put it on a timer so it is not running as cold while you are gone to work.

But another thought came to mind. Over the years I have made large purchases, or even not so large purchases, and had the product break or stop working after a very short amount of time. Once it was my son's Nintendo game console, another time it was a stand alone mixer, and yet another product was a pricey scrapbooking machine called a Cricut.

In each case I packaged the product up, wrote a letter to the company that made it, and mailed it back to them. In every single case the company sent me a brand new replacement for the product.

What I found was that companies are usually more interested in making a customer happy and keeping the customer, than worrying about their return policies. So next time you buy something and it stops working in a very short time, try sending it back to the company. Send a letter that says something along the lines of: "...I purchased your product less than a year ago. Since I know you are a reputable company, I knew you would want to know about my experience." Then explain what happened to your product.

Remember to ask for a replacement and give them your full name and address. Also include a phone number or e-mail where the company can reach you. This method works for many things including small appliances, tools, game consoles, video equipment, and even electronics. Even if it doesn't work and the company doesn't replace your item, you are only out the cost of shipping. You could even look up their web site and either call or e-mail them before you mail the item back, just to make sure it's worth your efforts.

Wishing you the best in your thrifty life.

Linda Holmes


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What's New At -

Follow the links below to see what we've added to the site this month.

Visit the site blog to find out all our new updates!

Thrifty Summer Decorating -

If you look at Decorating magazines and pay attention to the pictures, you will soon notice the lack of clutter. Go ahead, compare one of those pictures to your own home.

Unless you are already a minimalist you will see a lot more clutter in your own home than they present in any of their show homes.

Of course we all live in our homes and therefore there is going to be clutter. In fact it seems to follow us around.

But if you would like a new look, try hiding some of the clutter. First clean up and get rid of anything you can.

Next, use storage bins, side tables with drawers, or shelving and put anything you can out of site. It will change the entire look of your home and you don't have to spend anything to do it.

One way to implement this idea is - if you are having company, put everything in the bathroom away. Any hair products, combs, brushes, toothbrushes and paste - everything except the soap and towels. Already your bathroom will look cleaner and more presentable. While you may not want to have all of your everyday items put away all the time, it is a good trick for when you have company.

They will get the impression you have a very nice, well kept house and they won't know why they think that.

Where Do I Put The Sofa?

Another great way to save money on decorating is to simply rearrange the furniture. But not everyone is good at this.

Have no fear... Try this new interior decorating guide and be your own designer

Here is a book that may help, Where Do I Put The Sofa?

Free Stuff -

One of the pages we added this month was Free Stuff. The research has been done for you and we will be adding more links to this page as we find them.

One word of caution though - not everything advertised on the internet as Free is actually Free. Some companies offer a free trial offer and when you sign up they put you on an every 30 day shipment. If you return the sample within their time period (usually 10 to 30 days) they will not charge your card, but otherwise they will.

So if you are trying to get something free on the internet and in order to get it you have to enter your credit card information, most likely it is not free at all.

Sign up for our RSS feed to be informed when we add more free stuff to the site.

Getting Finances In Order - Part 7 -

In January you made up your files and filed away all of your old bills and receipts.

In February you set up your end of year tax file.

In March you started maintaining your files.

In April you filed your taxes.

In May you continued filing your paid invoices and bills in your files.

In June you were in the swing of things and were keeping your bills paid on time and had an idea of your due dates and amounts due.

In July take a good look at your spending for the first half of the year. Are you spending what you intended on bills, groceries, clothing and misc items?

If you don't have a written budget, go back and look at what you are spending in each catagory and make a budget for the remainder of the year.

For example you would write: Utilities $170.00 per month (add the first 6 months utility bills and divide by 6 for the average monthly amount).

Groceries $500.00 per month (this figure varies depending on how many people live in the household).

Continue listing your expenses with an average spent for the first 6 months and see if you can stay within your budget for the last 6 months of this year.

Thrifty Living Tips: 7 Ways to Cut Expenses on Your Next Backyard Barbeque -

Summertime is the perfect time to hold a backyard barbeque.

It is also the perfect way to cook and not heat up the house. For ways to have that next get together and save money, check out this article: Thrifty Living Tips: 7 Ways to Cut Expenses on Your Next Backyard Barbeque

These THRIFTY LIVING TIPS should get you started on a fun and thrifty July.

Please be safe and enjoy your friends and your family.

See you with more Thrifty Ideas in August!