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Tuesday, April 5, 2016

A Never Ending Story: Rising Prices-Ways to Cut Your Costs, Urban Farming Contest

Poor Man Survival

Self Reliance tools for independent minded people…


ISSN 2161-5543

A Digest of Urban Survival Resources

Yiddish proverb: “With money in your pocket, you are wise and you are handsome and you sing well, too.”



A Never Ending Story: Rising Prices-Ways to Cut Your Costs, Urban Farming Contest


How to Squeeze a dollar from a dime…that was my mother’s mantra, a child of the Great Depression.  She could make an apple pie from a box of Ritz Crackers that could fool a county fair judge!


No doubt you’ve noticed that manufacturers have continued to shrink the size of their product

while charging the same price. The packaging looks the same, but you’re getting less toilet paper, less ice cream, less coffee, etc. while spending more.


This is one reason why we frequently shop an area Amish bulk foods store where we get 50lb. bags of rolled oats for less than $18 or 10lbs of homemade sausage of $11 – it’s worth the trip and we often have friends tag along to take advantage of the savings.


In reality, Wall Street heard that Americans have reached epidemic proportions of obesity and they’re simply trying to curb this problem.


Manufacturers and government often offer a lame [and usually nonsensical excuse as to why prices go up…most recently everything was blamed on high fuel prices despite the fact we’ve seen record LOW fuel prices… yet Wall Street profits are up and CEO compensation is in the stratosphere – after all, Goldman Sachs, for instance, can afford to pay Mrs. Clinton $640K for three speeches and don’t forget “she’s one of us, just looking out for the little guy.”


While the cost of living continues to reach Pluto…workers in most parts of the nation are still being denied a living wage and the doomsayers say a hike in the minimum wage will cripple business….yet massive raises never seems to threaten CEO compensation. 


Never mind that government mis-spending and red tape has helped cripple the economy for years.  I often wonder why they can’t get their simple brains in gear AND just simply NOT TAX ANY low income citizen on the first $25-$30,000 of income at the city, state and federal level [no tax of any kind]…that would give an immediate boost in spendable income without hurting small business or the little guy which supposedly politicians are in favor of helping [yeah right].


It’s just my humble opinion, but I guess politicians would rather see record numbers of Americans on food stamps while Wall Street firms, like the maker of Oreo cookies, sends jobs to Mexico. [While Mexico sends it poor to the United States to collect welfare-oh, the irony]!


Some Proven Ways to Save a Buck of Two


Many people join wholesale clubs such as Costco and Sam’s Club to save money.

While there is nothing wrong with the quality offered at either, you can save just as much

money by shopping the sales at Wal Mart, Costco and grocery stores if you shop their

sales and use their shopper loyalty card. Kroger supermarket, for instance, offers a 10 cent a gallon reduction on fuel purchases as a reward for using their card.

My problem with wholesale clubs is that one must buy a membership and most often,

one needs to purchase large quantities. That’s fine if you have a large family and plenty of storage space.  I might suggest instead that folks create a neighborhood buying co-op.  Compounding the problem for me personally is that we live 50 miles from the nearest wholesale club!


It has become rare in today’s scattered, disconnected society but if you do happen to live in a tight-knit community, many cooperatives take place such as tool lending, baby sitting, even barn raising  as in Amish areas.  That’s the way our grandparents lived but too often in our so-called connected society, we live disconnected lives.


One area which is especially challenging to save money on in America is a car…lenders now offer six-year auto loans due to high costs and most dealers advertise leases versus purchases as many folks can no longer afford a new car.  Financial planners have always suggested buying a car a few years older to save money and most Americans are holding onto their vehicles longer.  America’s public transportation system is a national embarrassment and the added expense of auto insurance along with maintenance, vehicle tags and other costs create a burden for many.


Alternatives include ride sharing, bicycles, motorcycles and trikes [even these have become expensive], electric bikes, mopeds, subways and bus systems where available or if you don’t require an auto very often, consider renting one when needed.

Leasing a Car: How to Be Smart About It
In a few cases leasing can be at least as financially viable as purchasing a new or used car. In some cases, you can even come out ahead.


These sites help you find restaurants to eat at & more. Subscribe to Groupon & get a $10 off coupon.

These sites offer handy tools whether you’re a local looking for a cheap meal, a service, or as tourist visiting a new city.  Members of AARP can use their membership to find discounts in cities throughout the USA as well – check their site.      


·  Super Frugal 7 Day Meal Plan
How much do you think you could reduce your grocery bill?


Home improvement & DIY resources

Find a whole bunch of animal care reports here…chickens, goats, deer, etc. – free!



What did our grandparents know that could help us now?

Many pets have experienced side effects from commercial flea collars overly powerful



Instead, try this simple and safe herbal flea collar... Soak a piece of heavy and smooth

Twine-long enough so it fits securely around your pet’s neck—in pennyroyal oil (available at

health- food stores)  for 24 hours.  Then hang it up in the bathtub until it stops dripping.

When dry, tie the twine around your pet collar to repel fleas.  Fleas hate pennyroyal!


Caution: DO NOT use pennyroyal if you, your pet or anyone in your household is pregnant,

including other pets.



Best deals…plus don’t forget to comparison shop on Amazon


Your meds can harm your pets. Keep all medications out of handbags and low shelves.




Free Garden Planning software/downloads

Gardening & preserving your produce is like having money in the bank!


Use software to plan, re-plan your garden layout


This one is a free download from Google…3-D layouts


More Free Garden Helpers…Design your garden in minutes –



Fend off pests & find the solution by using the free Pest & Disease Detective app at:


How to Start a Small Farm




Urban Farming Contest

You don’t need acres of land to farm. In the Urban Farming Contest, share how you grow or cultivate plants or animals with limited space. Whether it takes place in a small backyard, on a fire escape, or in the couple of feet in front of your kitchen window, we can’t wait to see how you farm.

Winners will take home some fantastic prizes from PlantLink, including a soil moisture sensor, speaker, planters, and more.



Spray your lawn and deck floor with Listerine to get rid of bugs.

Don’t spray directly on a wood door (like your front door), but spray around the frame. Spray around the window frames, and even inside the dog house.


Old time septic tank revitalizer. Into a quart of water, mix 1 lb. of brown sugar and one envelope of dried yeast. Pour down your toilet and flush. Promotes anerobic bacteria action – works!


Need a tool for the day? This site helps neighbors rent equipment. Cheaper than a rental center! [You may have to click on the English tab]


Paper napkins/Towels: Instead of buying paper napkins or towels, buy different colored wash cloths and use for wiping down kitchen surfaces and use for napkins also. They save us money as they are washed and used many times over and are environment friendly. When the wash cloths start to look old and worn out they work great to use for cleaning rags.


Best Apps for Spring Cleaning

>BrightNest – is the new app to turn to if you look around your home and ‘don’t even know where to get started.’    It’ll teach you how to become a steward of your dwelling & it is loaded with useful specific tips – such as how to remove toilet bowl stains [hint: try denture tablets first]


>ThredUp – is an online consignment store that makes it easy to get something back for women’s or children’s clothing you no longer want.  Ask for a clean-out kit & mail the clothes in.  You’ll get shopping credit at Macy’s for the garments the site can sell.


A step-by-step guide on how to cut the cord, save $180 a month, and still watch sports and your favorite shows. 


Frugal Living Resources

With the results of recession hitting everyone’s life badly, frugal living has been the need of the hour and people look for all means to save those few extra dollars that they can in every small way. There are still thousands of people who are yet to recover from the after effects of recession. This has led people to reconsider the ways of buying and also the things that they buy. Add this frugal living resource to your collection.


10 Ways to Stay Poor… Forever (Money Talks): "Building wealth is for idiots. Who wants to be rich nowadays? Rich people are evil. Besides, you can have everything you ever wanted right now if you know what you’re doing.  Here’s the top 10 ways to stay poor… forever.."


More freebies compliments of your humble Poor Man-please share responsibly!

The No BS – Ready for Anything Survival Files



Yours for better living,

Bruce ‘The Poor Man’


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DAR said...

Well laddie, you outdid yourself on this week's blog. Chock full of goodies which is more than we can say for many of the manufacturers trying to rip us off...and we've all stopped packing Oreo cookies in our kiddies lunch box in our neighborhood...maybe those Mexicans can afford them now! Good job!

escapecartist said...

Wow, wow, and wow-great post, thanks for all the wonderful tips and ideas! you're the man!

YakYak said...

It is a sad fact that our standard of living has declined in America [except for politicians] and yet we spend massive amounts of tax dollars for illegals and Obama wants to bring even more here...hell, I have a tough time supporting my family. Our leaders are screwed up and they are screwing us...thanks for sharing these resources.

Ann said...

Yes, we used to have a Sam's Club membership, but we just didn't use it very much (he had gotten it while he worked at Walmart, but is now self-employed). And the frugal shopper I am, I use coupon and cards. We love Groupon for their local deals and some vacation specials. And Pinterest has a slew of DIY remedies for just about any problem you need help for.....I haven't bough any bug spray, flea and tick treatment or harsh cleaners in years! And my house is clean AND fume-free. It works for us.