Why I No Long Hate Waiting In Line

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Why I no longer hate waiting in line

I use to hate waiting in lines. I have so much to do in a day, I don’t have time for lines. I am an introvert so I don’t strike up conversations to pass the time unless I feel really convicted that I should.

I would try my best to avoid having to wait in line.  I would leave early for the bank.  I would grocery shop while others were mostly at work or at school. I would avoid the post office right when it opens and at lunch hour and right before it closes, but still I had lines to wait in now and again.

Then I started my challenge to read 24 books this year which grew into a challenge to read 75. While brainstorming how I could fit just a few more minutes of reading into my day, it hit me, I could start reading in lines.

I am not talking about dragging a paperback book or the family iPad everywhere I go with hopes of fitting in a few moments of reading. That would be awkward and heavy. Instead what I do is keep my kindle app.  on my  iPod (because I don’t own a smartphone) filled with a few free titles scored from one of my favorite sources for free ebooks.

I will admit sometimes I start a free ebook pick and go “oh my I can see why this was free” and then I stop reading it. However, more often than not I find that I really enjoy the free titles. Currently I am reading “Becoming A Frugalista ” and  I am discovering a lot of website resources for saving money that I have not heard of before.

I have also enjoyed titles such as “10 Ways to Be A Better Learner” and  “If You Can’t Fail It Doesn’t Count” . These titles were read entirely off my iPod while waiting in lines, or for my exercise class to begin, or for a friend to show up to begin a run.

Now instead of dreading lines, and time spent waiting, I embrace them with a smile and whip out my iPod and start reading. Sometimes, I am even sorry to see the line dissipate so quickly as I find myself wanting to read just a page or two more.

What do you do while waiting in line?

Looking for time management tips? Follow the Goal Setting & Time Management Tips board on Pinterest.

thrifty bookworms and swagbucks the perfect romance (smallest)For those times I can’t find a free ebook I would like to read, I use Swagbucks to pay for a discounted one I like.  Thrifty bookworms and Swagbucks really is the perfect romance.

How To Grocery Shop Faster

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I view grocery shopping as a necessary evil. For fun I like to see sometimes just how fast I can grocery shop and still do the things necessary to keep us on budget (like shop at 4 stores in one outing). My current record 4 stores with a driveway to driveway time of 1 hour and 30 minutes, and that is with 20 minutes spent driving.

how to grocery shop in less time

My tips for how to grocery shop faster

Please note, we are a family surviving off of one income, to meet our tight grocery budget, I shop several stores, shop sales and use coupons. If your family is financially able you can cut more time off your trip by sticking to one store with fairly good prices overall.

It Starts with at home preparation

Make a menu

A menu does not have to be complicated. A simple piece of paper with lunch and dinner written on it and the numbers 1 through 7 under each and something to eat beside each number is fine.Personally I don’t add breakfast or snacks as we eat the same things over and over so I just know to add those items to my grocery list.

Make a list

Now that you know what you are eating make a list of ingredients you are going to need. Then check your cupboards for other day to day stuff your are running low on. Don’t forget the bathroom cupboards too,and the laundry room,cleaning cabinet, and dog supply area.

Check flyers on line

I sometimes skip this step and when I do it always takes longer to shop (since I am scanning each aisle for sales) and costs more money. Note what items are on sale that your family uses regularly and put them on the list.

Clip and organize coupons

I spend a few minutes checking the coupon listing on Swagbucks ( earn points and savings) and printing out those for products we use each week.

I also try to print out coupons listed on Money Saving Mom that I know we will use as Crystal posts them (internet coupons disappear fast so grab them as you see them).

I put those I know I am going to use this week in the envelope with my grocery money. I place the rest in my small coupon organizer.

For a more detailed list of all the goes into shopping for groceries the thrifty way check out my post

Step By Step Grocery Shopping With A Thrifty Person

Prep yourself for the event

Comfortable shoes

Think of grocery shopping as a race, you want shoes you can race in. I know I am losing the fashionista moms with this tip, but when you are zipping from aisle to aisle at a fast clip you can’t do it in heels (well most of us can’t).

Fully belly

If you are full you are less likely to waste time getting distracted by all the food not on your list that looks really good.

 Bring the right tools

Your list

If you don’t have a list you are going to waste time wandering from aisle  to aisle trying to remember what you need . It is almost a guarantee that with no list you are going to forget purchases you did need, meaning you are going to have to go to the store again. That is a huge time waster

Your wrist watch

I have experimented with this and found that I cut my grocery shopping time by as much as 1/3 when I wear a watch and am mindful to look at it as I go. It helps me stay on task.

Additional Tips

Shop Early

I have shopped all times of the day and found I can get it done quickest when I go early. The last store on my list does not open until 9 a.m. so I plan to hit my first store at  8 a.m. so  that I hit the last one just as it opens.

Shop alone

I know this is not always possible but shopping without small children really does make the trip go faster. I also find shopping with the hubby slows me down, so when he comes I try and view it as “date time” and enjoy his company and conversation.

Bring An Older Child To Help

Yes this sound opposite to my last point, but I am talking about bring children who are old enough to take part of the list from you and grab the items from it. My daughter and grocery shop this way most weeks and it really does save me time. We chat in the car between stores and I let her pick out a snack as a thank you for helping me.

Have Everyone Help Put It Away

This is something I have discovered recently. I always thought that having my three children and, when he is home, my husband help put the groceries away would cost me time later on as they wouldn’t put things away where they belonged. I was also afraid fresh produce would go bad because my helpers would bury it in the fridge. I was wrong. With just 2 or 3 trips of me acting like a supervisor showing them where it all goes, now we work like a well oiled machine and together we get the groceries put away in under 5 minutes, and so far no food has gone missing, and no produce has gone rotten.

 I want to know! Do you love or hate grocery shopping? Got any other ways to grocery shop faster? 

Linked To Titus 2sday,

Looking for time management tips? Follow the Goal Setting & Time Management tips board on Pinterest.

 

My Advice For New Homeschooling Attendees

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my advice for new homeschooling conference attendees

I have one word of advice for newbie homeschooling attendees

Do not enter the Exhibit Hall

Yes, you read that right, “don’t enter the exhibit hall”.

Let me explain.We are what I would call collective curriculum homeschoolers, and have been since the very beginning,  meaning we use a different publisher for just about each subject our children learn. So when I entered an exhibit hall at a homeschool convention as a newbie homeschooler  it was not a simple matter of walking up to Curriculum A’s booth and buying all of my supplies at that one booth and then leaving.

No, instead, I would need to wander from booth to booth deciding if what the vendor had to offer would help my tactile learner in math, or my visual learner in science, or my very distracted learner stay focused in ….well any subject.

When I was new to homeschooling and not yet confident in how and what I was teaching  vendor spiels of “why this is the best for my child” (even though they have never met them) mixed with only so many hours to make decisions,  caused me to snatch  up curriculum that did not work for my children at all.

I was coming home with a tonne of supplies and ended up using a fraction of it through our school year, and  then sold it at a loss at a second hand curriculum sale or eBay.

After attending homeschool conventions for several years in a row, my eyes were opened to the amount of wasted money, mental strength, and time I had spent in homeschooling convention exhibit halls, so I just stopped going.

I still went to the homeschool convention. I just didn’t enter the exhibit hall AT ALL.

I simply decided what speakers I want to hear ahead of time, and went and listened to some great uplifting and inspiring speeches grabbed my convention goody bag, and left.

80% of the catalogs I needed were in the convention goody bag, and the others were available by requesting one online. I also found that most of the catalogs came with free shipping codes attached, which I had been told was one of the main reasons to purchase in the exhibit hall.

I did all my thinking and shopping at home without the rush and without the vendor spiels. It reduced curriculum waste, thus saving me money. It also eliminated on the spot decision making thus reducing my mental anguish.

A compromise that works for me now that I have a few years of homeschooling under my belt

Now a few years later, I do enter the exhibit hall but only with a written list of needed curriculum in hand. I first look at the map of the exhibit hall before entering; this helps me go directly to the vendors I want and avoid window shopping. If I see something not on my list, I don’t buy it but instead ask for a catalog, in which I circle the item and then I let the catalog sit for at least a week before I look at it again and decide if we really need it.

A solution for newbies that gives hand on experience with curriculum without the pressure to buy…

If  you really want to see hands on what the curriculum looks like, try organizing a  curriculum preview event through your local homeschooling group, rather than entering the exhibit hall and risk become prey to impulse buying.

How it works is that you set aside a few hours where all the parents can meet in one large room with tables on which they can set out all the different types of curriculum they use in their homeschool.

By hosting a homeschool curriculum preview night, you will not only get a hands on look at various curriculum but advice from real moms and dads like you trying to find curriculum to best educate their child with.

I have even been able to talk to children at these preview nights and see what they think of the curriculum and since they are the actual ones using it I treasure their advice.

Looking for tips on homeschooling? Follow my Homeschooling board on Pinterest.