Maybe you're broke. Maybe you're just frugal. Either way, there's no need to overpay for your specs -- or, maybe, to pay at all.
"It's also helpful if you like their Facebook pages because that's where you'll find coupon codes, free shipping offers and other opportunities for savings," noted Charissa, who also linked to an organization that offers free vision screenings for uninsured, lower-income U.S. residents.
Nice work, Charissa. But allow me to add that there are several other options for free eye exams -- and that there's a way to get additional discounts on those already übercheap specs.
Even if your 'back 40' is actually a balcony 40, try veggies or herbs in containers.
The Renee's Garden seed company even offers container zucchini, which means that now city dwellers can have squash surpluses, too.
'Pay what you can' means frugal entertainment. A dollar (or even less) can get you through the door at a theater, comedy improv show or museum.
Admission by donation at a museum or live theater is like happy hour for the lively arts. It's a chance to get out of the house without going over your budget.
A few years back, while still a broke midlife college student, I paid $3 on pay-what-you-can, or PWYC, night at Seattle's Intiman Theatre. As I apologized, the ticket agent told me not to sweat it -- some people had paid as little as a quarter.
At-home meals will save you a bundle. No more excuses: If you can read, you can cook.
Anyone else but me wonder how these folks made it to adulthood?
Seriously. At some point they didn't know how to walk, read or tie their shoes. They weren't born knowing Facebook either. But they learned.
The popular online program lets you earn Amazon cards, PayPal cash and other rewards.
The cards also helped me pay for Christmas presents (read "Christmas for less than $100") and for things like flax seed, quinoa and vitamins. It's great when your get-healthy New Year's resolution costs nothing out of pocket.
I sold a little plastic baseball guy for a startling sum. Are you sitting on a gold mine?
Bob Feller funded my Roth IRA. Part of it, anyway. One of the items I got from my divorce's community-property split in 2006 was a Hartland Figurine of the Cleveland Indians legend.
I always meant to put it on eBay. The closest I got was taking the box out of a closet and setting it on the couch to remind myself to sell it. That was probably two years ago.
Last month, I finally put the statuette up for online auction -- and it sold for an amount that frankly startled me.
The right coupons can mean great deals. Just make sure they're not creating a 'need' where none exists.
And I fell for it.
Stray nails, bolts and other odds and ends not only save you money, but also can spare you aggravation.
Since I don't own a thimble, I did what any frugalist would do: I headed to the junk drawer. There I found a tiny plastic container that once held a gumball-machine prize. Fitted on my thumb, it made needle-pushing possible.
Yes, I once picked up a gumball container off the supermarket floor. Like all the other things I pick up, I figured it would come in handy sometime -- and it did.
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WHAT IS FRUGAL NATION?
Donna Freedman's Frugal Nation blog is for readers who want to live cheaply -- whether due to necessity or a lifestyle choice. It explores living sustainably and making life more meaningful at the same time.
ABOUT DONNA FREEDMAN
Donna Freedman, a writer based in Anchorage, Alaska, writes the Frugal Nation blog for MSN Money. She won regional and national prizes during an 18-year newspaper career and earned a college degree in midlife without taking out student loans. Donna also writes about the frugal life for her own site, Surviving and Thriving.
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VIDEO ON MSN MONEY
Start of summer already? Better get shopping. But give the grills and new electronics a miss for now, according to the experts at Dealnews.