On the Cheap

Who would have thought that living with flair could be. . . cheap!  I used to think that budgets and coupons and delayed gratification (blah, blah, blah) meant limitation.  But it actually offers me a different kind of freedom.  I’m free not to buy.  Imagine! 

Just today, my daughter and I made homemade hazelnut frappuccino drinks because you can make anything good with a blender, ice, and something sweet.  You put out some ingredients on the counter, start pouring things into the blender, and you ask–wide-eyed and smiling–“What can we make with this?” 

It was better than Starbucks.  I mean it.

Earlier, I took the advice of my world-traveling neighbor that you don’t need to buy expensive craft kits or distractions for your children when you travel in the minivan.

“You just need one thing,” she says.  This is the woman who drove her children from Pennsylvania to Washington in her minivan last summer.  “And it will cost you less than five dollars.”

“What?”  I’m taking notes.

“Pipe cleaners!”  She tells me that if you hand a child a bunch of pipe cleaners, they can make whole villages of imaginary animals and flowers.  “There’s no mess on the floor, either.”

I’m going to buckle them into their seats, hand them some pipe cleaners, and simply ask, “What can we make with this?”  

I like living on the cheap.  It’s never felt more creative.

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Journal:  How do you live on the cheap?

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8 thoughts on “On the Cheap

  1. Talking of a blender and something sweet: I love to make milk shakes with a ripe banana, or strawberries, or raspberries. It's so delicious and healthy.
    And can you please reveal the recipe for the hazelnut frappuccino to us 😉

  2. It's amazing how children can be happy with so little. I watch the poor children in the slums in my country (India) make up the most creative games with old tires and tins…And then I see the children of the rich so easily bored with the expensive toys they have…You're teaching your children to be happy and creative with what they have – that's a powerful lesson.

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