Received wisdom

I’ve recently finished reading both Zero Waste Home: The Ultimate Guide to Simplifying Your Life and The Joy of Less. These have provoked some serious thinking for me. As I’ve been pondering, I’ve realised how lucky I’ve been to have 2 frugal generations behind me whose wisdom I’ve received over the past 30+ years. Even though I may not have put it all into practise- here are some of the things my parents and grandparents taught me. I am looking to put more and more of this into practise.

  1. Cut open the tube of toothpaste/ hand cream/ tomato puree (or whatever it is) to get the most out of it
  2. Squeeze together old bars of soaps, to completely use them up
  3. Add some milk to baked beans to make them spread a little further
  4. Save old pants, t-shirts/ towels etc to use as rags
  5. Rinse out old soap/ milk/ shampoo etc bottles with water and use a diluted version. This works particularly well with fabric conditioner which is then ideal for hand washing
  6. Tip up the petrol nozzle to get out every last drop you’ve paid for!
  7. Wash out plastic bags to re-use them for other things
  8. Re-use old margarine tubs to freeze food
  9. Grow your own fruit/ veg- it’s MUCH cheaper
  10. Cut the fronts off old cards and re-use them for gift tags

I’ll try to regularly add short burst of these kinds of posts. I don’t want to overwhelm you! What have you been taught? The one thing I haven’t adopted is hanging out old tea bags on a tree/ bush/ line to dry. Yes, my grandma really did used to do this!