A New Beginning
by, 09-28-2008 at 03:41 PM (1066 Views)
I am new to this whole frugal living concept, so I highly doubt that anyone will find anything especially helpful here. What you might find are humorous stories about a City Girl trying to figure out how to live a frugal lifestyle.
To give you some background, I live in Chicago where the cost of living is pretty high. I have a good job and make a decent living. My lifestyle is quite comfortable, but I have recently realized that if I didn't change my ways, I wouldn't achieve my dreams. My dreams are pretty simple. I want to buy a 2 bedroom, 2 bath condo in Bucktown with a patio big enough for a grill and my friends. And I want a dog. All before I retire.
In order to afford the condo (and dog) I will need to get rid of my credit card debt. There is no way I could afford my credit card payments AND a mortgage.
A few weeks ago, I sat down and looked at my spending for the previous month. It wasn't a big surprise that the area I spent the most was on dining out. My busy schedule didn't seem to allow for time to make dinner or pack a lunch. What was surprising was how much I spent! I figured this would be a good place to start cutting back. The problem? Beyond boiling water, I don't know anything about cooking and the only isle in the grocery store I was familiar with was the freezer section where I could find my frozen pizzas and Lean Cuisines.
In addition to the challenges of learning to cook and navigate the grocery store, I make a fraction of what many of my friends make. I'm trying to find ways to spend time with my friends without spending a lot of money. I'm having to cut back on the happy hours, dinners/lunches out, jewelry making classes, black-tie fundraisers, etc.
This is going to be long road, but with a sense of humor and some hard work I hope to achieve my goals in 5 years. Wish me luck!