Refurbish your sneakers to save $3,991

Choosing sneakers

Ever wondered why so many sneakers are white? It’s a strange choice for something that will be in close contact with dirt. Unless you are selling them. I stopped buying white shoes a long time ago, and now buy only ‘earth’ colors. Recently I have been buying Merrell ‘stretch’ shoes that allow you to just step into them. No laces and no need to bend over or sit down when putting them on. Of course I get them at the lowest price I can before and after the purchase.

Time to clean them
Dirty sneakers. Merrell stretch shoes. Clean your sneakers
Not too dirty, but not OK to wear in public

So either you’ve had them awhile, or you ‘stepped in something’ on the homestead. I am pretty good about wearing dedicated shoes for dirty jobs or hiking. But inevitable they do get dirty. I have seen people use washing machines, but that’s more wear and tear on them than I like. Instead I have a pretty simple way to clean them. Continue reading “Refurbish your sneakers to save $3,991”

Two ways to save money on Amazon

Save money at Amazon. Frugal living. In the wheat
Camelcamelcamel tracks the price of Amazon items
Method 1. CamelCamelCamel

The camelcamelcamel website tracks the price of an item on Amazon and when it goes down the website will email you. Then you buy it quickly before the price goes back up. I use this approach for larger ticket items and several non-perishable repeat purchase items on our homestead like vehicle oil and air filters. Steps: Continue reading “Two ways to save money on Amazon”

Easy whole wheat bread

easy homemade bread
Fresh out of the oven
Why bake your own bread?
1) eliminate preservatives
2) tastes great
3) can make it anytime and eliminate a run to the store
4) It’s satisfying to make something yourself
5) It’s cheap and can speed your path to getting FI


With a bread machine it doesn’t take much effort, but it does take some. It’s probably best to be honest with yourself and if you don’t see yourself making bread on the weekend or evening as a fun activity, then don’t spend the $ to go down this path. It’s not frugal to store an unused bread machine in your basement. Another consideration is it takes a bit of skill to cut bread slices, if that is not something you are into, again, maybe don’t go down this path. Continue reading “Easy whole wheat bread”

Buy quality clothing to get FI

Buy quality clothing to be frugal for financial independence
My go-to cool weather outfit on the farm. Fleece shirt with 1/4 zip and fleece pants.

What goes into choosing a shirt in the morning?

I own about 50 shirts but I only regularly wear about 20 of them. So 30 just sit in my closet. They are all in good shape, close to new condition. But they all have something not quite right with them. So I wear my favorite shirts and the rest just hang there. It took me quite awhile for me to figure out that I have a long torso relative to my arm length. This means when I buy shirts I have to pay attention that they are long enough, or they just come untucked when I wear them. I also figured out that when I wear T-shirts I like the ones that are loose fitting. I am a large but different brands make larges at different sizes. So some fit a bit tighter than others. Those tight ones stay in the drawer because when I pick out a shirt I choose the ones that feel good. Now I buy XL depending on the brand.

I like high quality socks

I grew up in the era where white tube socks were cheap and everyone wore them. Later I migrated to darker poly-cotton socks and found a brand that was pretty good. But then I found Lorpen socks. Lorpen makes a bunch of different types with different materials like merino wool and coolmax, and they are not cheap. They have reinforced areas and feel solid. They also make socks that are anti-odor that are great for travel or camping. When I put them on I can’t go back to the thin cotton-poly socks. Lorpen socks last a long time. Now my other socks just sit in the back of the drawer.

Who cares about what shirts or socks Mr. Wheat wears?

Good question. My point is not to convince you to buy long shirts or Lorpen socks. My point is that it’s worth figuring out what works for you, and then putting some thought and effort into a wardrobe that you like to wear. Just because a piece of clothing is a good deal, doesn’t mean it works for you.

5 Strategies for getting value for your $ in clothing:

1. Spend some time shopping, from your favorite couch: Amazon has become the 800 pound gorilla of commerce for a reason. You can search a product and sort for the highest reviews. It’s like surveying a hundred people who have tested your product. I rarely buy a product with less than 4 star rating. And I actually read some of the ratings, it’s worth your time. You don’t have to buy from Amazon, I actually buy a fair amount of clothes from Sierra Trading Post. Continue reading “Buy quality clothing to get FI”

Staying fit on a budget; mountain biking, hiking and working out at home

On the path to FI, keeping fit is a good investment

Everyone wants to keep in good shape but it’s a challenge to find workouts that can keep us motivated and interested. Today I am going to share how I keep in shape while staying frugal towards getting FI.

Mountain biking has major advantages

If you enjoy cycling but don’t enjoy riding in traffic and do enjoy the woods, mountain biking may be for you. One of the big advantages over running is the lack of impact on your knees. Riding up 1000 feet elevation getting your aerobic workout can be followed with a thrilling descent on trails. This is one reason why I enjoy mt biking over hiking. Once I’ve put in the effort to get to the top of and see the view, I am usually only a fun 25 minute quick descent back to the car. The downhill is the reward for the climb up. And everyone can pick their chosen approach in terms of how to descend. Nowadays people tend to think of downhill mountain bikes that bomb down steep inclines. But there are plenty of winding, smooth, banked trails around that allow for fun but controlled descents.

mountain biking in the Palouse
Fast flowing downhill, the way I like it

Mountain biking can be a low expense sport

Continue reading “Staying fit on a budget; mountain biking, hiking and working out at home”