This Is What Frugal Looks Like: A Journey to A Simple Happy Life

by This Is Frugal · 8 comments

in This is Frugal

This is What Frugal Looks Like is a series that highlights different ways that people can be frugal in their lives- after all, frugality doesn’t have to be drastic or just about clipping coupons. Frugality can be fun and easy. Each respondent answers the same four questions.

Today’s interview is with Imene from A Journey to a Simple Happy Life.

What does frugality mean to you?

I am not frugal by nature I am trying to be one. I started thinking differently about money after we purchased our house and realized that even though we doubled our mortgage payment we still managed to save . So where did all that money go? We didn’t take any vacations or bought expensive items. That’s when I realized that we were wasting a lot of money. So Frugality for me is about using your money in a smart way. It is being conscious of where your money goes , differentiating between your needs and wants and being a good steward of our planet.

Another reason for my change of perspective is that living in the USA has brought a sense of fragility I have never experienced living in Algeria or France. Loosing your job here can have dire consequences. That has changed the way we use and see our money. Our savings have become our safety net when they used to be just extra-income we stashed for big projects in the future.

What is something that you do that is ‘typically’ frugally?

I tend to be frugal when it comes to buying clothes or large purchases such as fridge, computer…I shop around, read consumer reports and try to get the best for my money. I think it’s better to buy few things of good quality than cheap ones you will need to replace all the time. It’s better for us and better for the environment.

In that spirit there are two places I try to avoid Target and the yarn store. The first because I always end up buying things that were not on my list, that store is just too tempting. And the second because I walk in there and my brains stops functioning. My primal instinct of hoarding kicks in and I feel the urge to buy it all.

What is something frugal that you do that is unusual?

I can’t think of anything unusual. Frugality seems to come more naturally these days and is in line with my yearning for a more simple, minimalist life. Oh think of it..I use the library more often. I am book lover and I use to buy all the books I read. Now I check to see if my library has them.

What are some of your longterm goals that being frugal will help you to accomplish?

We would love to save enough money to be able to pursue our passions in life. My husband dreams of managing a soccer team and my dream is to own a bookstore just for the fun of it. Maybe we’ll get there after the house is payed and the kids are done with college. It helps when you are looking at that pair of boots that you have to have.

About Imene:

Imene and I first ‘met’ through a comment she left on Almost Frugal. We’re similar in many ways (two boys and a girl, living in countries that aren’t our own, trying to move towards simplicity and authenticity) and different too. She’s a technical sort of person, who’s now a stay at home mom, while I don’t do technical and prefer to work outside the home. No matter the differences, however, her’s is a blog that I always enjoy reading and enjoys a prominent place in my bookmarks list.

She has her own series on A Journey to a Simple Happy Life: Blogviews.


1 Trish January 14, 2010

Nice idea for a post. Not buying books is definitely a key step I’ve had to learn. Also, DH and I made a great leap forward when we stopped eating out and shopping for fun.

I would add that ditching the TV (and magazines) is helpful to. I find that both encourage consumerism.

Anyway it’s fun reading about other people’s efforts. Imene, what country do you live in–if you don’t mind my asking.
.-= Trish´s last blog ..Pulling pumpkin soup out of the cupboards: this week’s dark day’s challenge. =-.

2 Kelly January 18, 2010

She’s from North Africa, lived in France for a while, and now lives in the US.

3 Kayla K@Kayla K's Thrifty Ways January 14, 2010

Yeah, those yarn shops will get you every time!
.-= Kayla K@Kayla K’s Thrifty Ways´s last blog ..Saving Money on Textbooks, And, How I Planted A Tree in Guatemala =-.

4 imene January 14, 2010

Thank you Kelly!!! It is amazing to be featured in your series. Your blog was one of the first ones I read and I still read.You are one amazing lady!!
.-= imene´s last blog ..WIP Wednesday =-.

5 Kelly January 18, 2010

{Blush!} Thanks Imene!

6 Melissa January 14, 2010

I love to hear that other people avoid discount stores for the same reason I do…you ALWAYS spend too much money and can never quite place a finger on what it was that ended up costing so darn much.

7 Kristen@TheFrugalGirl January 15, 2010

I rarely go to Target either. I prefer to grocery shop at Aldi (nice and simple, very few temptations to go off-list) and Goodwill (where I can get Target merchandise for cheap!).
.-= Kristen@TheFrugalGirl´s last blog ..Food Waste Friday | I don’t think this is my fault. =-.

8 MamaRuck January 22, 2010

I feel the same way about Target! Glad to know there is someone else out there with the same affliction. I limit myself to one trip every two months for household supplies and try and bribe my DH to come along. He helps me stick to the list. It equals out to about $15 a week on household and other if I do it this way. Ah…Target why are you so tempting?
.-= MamaRuck´s last blog ..Snow Day =-.

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