June 30, 2011

just thinking about law school

Here are some of our money saving tips while being in law school:

At Home
Do less laundry (Like, wear things more than once before washing them. It's not gross, it's green.)
Dry clothes on the line (depending on where you live)
Offer to take leftover laundry detergent from fancy people who've upgraded to HE machines
Try a "no spend month" (No eating out, no driving: no spending. For a month. We've done it. Twice.)
Shopping at Grocery Outlet has cut down on our grocery budget drastically
(they also have really great prices on shampoos, soaps, lotions etc.)
Stock up on lots of brown rice, whole wheat tortillas, & whole wheat pasta. Lots.
Crock pots can turn basically any ingredients into awesome meals (just throw it all in & done!)
Drink water. From the tap (again, green!)
Accept hand-me-downs when needed and make them work
Never buy new when you can buy thrift/Freecycle/Craigslist
See what programs you qualify for (After B was born, we qualified for WIC. Free breast pump! Woo hoo!)
We both wear glasses. We buy new ones online for insanely cheap rates
(Our insurance can't compete with this place).
Toph cuts his own hair & B's. My MIL cuts mine.
I stopped dying my hair (Ombre is in, right?)
We bought our car with cash from Craigslist (It better make it through law school!)

At School
Our school gives every student money for printing, there's no need for us to have a printer at home.
Toph buys all of his textbooks online (usually through Amazon)
He sells his books back on Bookbyte after each semester
There are always free lunches on campus from some event or other (Always!)
Check to see what Grants you qualify for (since having B, we qualify for ones we didn't know about until we looked into them)
When possible, get in-state tuition
Check to see if your school has good rates for on-campus housing (we live on-campus and LOVE it!)

At Play
For the past couple of birthdays we've been given Netflix subscriptions by our parents (such a great gift!)
Dollar movies/cheap local activities can be your best friend
Internet and t.v. are included in our rent
Swap babysitting with your friends who also have kids
Mini splurges every now and then will ward off big splurges (I suggest Pinkberry visits. Highly suggest.)
Enter free giveaways/free trial programs. Lots of them (Toph got a free laptop that way. SO COOL!).
Find yourself a free hobby (Hello, blogging!)
 Even with all our scrimping and saving,
we're gonna be up to our earlobes in debt after three years of law school+taking the bar.
So why even bother?
Sometimes I wonder the same thing.

But we still plug along, hoping to do the best we can while still enjoying this phase in our lives.