1. Robin

    To me, “cheap” means that a person is willing to negatively affect others with their money-saving efforts. By being deceitful, selfish, petty, aggressive, etc. A frugal person finds honest ways to avoid spending money/spending more money.
    I worked at one place where a person returned a garden hose that they had used for ten years. The manager gave them cash for the cost of a new hose.
    Not to mention things that I’ve seen extreme couponers do.

  2. To me, frugality is the art of living well cheaply. In other words, if you do frugality right, you sacrifice nothing. And I say your sight is a prime example of my understanding of frugality. You are frugal, madam. Those people over at the Plutus Awards know what the hell they’re doing. Cheers.

  3. Congratulations! I love your frugal blog :).
    “Frugal” is a weird identity to embrace, as it conjures images of eating beans under a burlap blanket. I’m a minimalist and a frugalist, and it’s not something I lead with when I meet new people… but it does tend to come out when they’re drinking bucket wine in my micro-home.

    • It is a hard opener. In fact, it’s not always something I claim because it’s so misunderstood. Post coming soon 😉

      “…it does tend to come out when they’re drinking bucket wine in my micro-home.” This is sheer gold, friend!

  4. Congrats!!! Totally agree that frugal and cheap are NOT. THE. SAME. I define frugality as living below my means and being aware of and comfortable with less expensive options and challenging the status quo. Also quick frugally awkward story – drinking water at the bar while my friends crush fancy cocktails and asking me 6 times if I want another drink! Another one similar to your bad food shelf peppers is my boyfriend catching me staring at the clearance rack at the grocery store for 20 minutes!

  5. Your awksome series reminds me of several stories. We are a DIY family, and as we have lived in nicer neighborhoods over the years, our neighbors often question why we “don’t just hire someone to do that?”

    When we lived in the Deep South, I was in the front yard doing yard work when an elderly lady stopped and asked “Do you enjoy doing gardening?” When I said “Not particularly,” she asked why we didn’t have a gardener. Since she was a complete stranger, I didn’t want to get into the particulars of our finances and our values, so I mumbled something and she kept walking. Years later, when we moved into our dream house, I thought about that incident and “answered” her in my mind – “THAT’s why we did our own yard work!” Our frugality made it possible for us to buy our dream house.

    Of course, *now* we’re the weirdos who DIY in our new neighborhood. The neighbor across the street doesn’t understand why we patched the hole in our vehicle tire ourselves, rather than calling AAA (like he did when he got a flat tire) to come tow the vehicle to a garage so they could change the tire. We paid a few bucks for a patch kit – he paid $500.

    After several more major DIY projects, one day the neighbor came over and said, “You’re not replacing your roof by *yourself,* are you?!?” 😀 😀 😀 “No, we actually hired a roofer for that. But we *are* installing the gutters ourselves.”

    I’m sure they think we can barely afford to live in our neighborhood. But DIY made it possible for us to fully FIRE seven years ago. Meanwhile, our neighbors are all still working.

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