I just lost my job and

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      For starters, apply for and take the help you qualify for. I know it

      can be hard to do, but this is the reason it’s there. Plus, it can

      take a week or two to get approved, and some more time to actually

      get the benefits- if you wait until you have no other option, you

      won’t have the time needed to get the benefits before things are too


      Next, before getting groceries, take stock of what you have. If it’s

      easier, pull it all out on the floor, and sit down taking stock.

      Then, make up a list of meals you can make if you don’t buy anything

      at all. Seperate that food as you list it, so you don’t count on

      having 2 cans of something when you only have one.

      Then, make a list of meals you can make if you only buy one or two

      things. Set those aside. Those are the meals you want to concentrate

      on. Buy the stuff needed to make up enough meals until you get paid

      (I’m presuming you still get 1 or 2 checks). Get the perishables you

      need, too- bread, eggs, milk, etc. Cut back on drinks- you can drink

      water out of the tap. It’s not great, but it’s healthier than juice,

      soda, coffee, or tea. And cheaper.

      Cut back on the amount of meat in your diet for now. Protein can be

      introduced with peanut butter or eggs, and both are fairly cheap.

      Peanut Butter is $1-$1.50 for a jar, and with a loaf of bread, it’ll

      provide cheap lunches for a while. Eggs make a quick breakfast, or

      can be used with pancake mix to make breakfast for dinner.

      Next- are there any consignment shops in your area? Maybe you could

      get rid of some old clothes, or housewares for some extra money. You

      won’t make much, but $5 is better than a box of old clothes in the

      closet. If you have anything you think might go for a decent amount,

      you can try craigs list or ebay. The upside to ebay is a large

      audience. The downside is it costs to post.

      Cut back on any services you don’t need- cable, internet, etc. If

      you have cell phones and can’t get out of the contract yet, then

      shut down the landline (if you have one). For cable or internet, cut

      back as much as possible, or cancel outright for now. You can get

      online to check things at the library for free for now. But in the

      mean time, it helps lower bills. Keep it off or lower until you have

      a steady job again, so you don’t incure unneccessary bills.

      If you can, lower insurance to the minimum needed for now for cars.

      If you pay for heat, lower the thermostat, and have everyone where

      socks and sweatshirts. It’s not great, but it’ll lower the heating


      If you or anyone in the house takes medications on a regular basis,

      ask the doctor for free samples to help cut down the costs of

      getting the perscription refilled. Doctors get samples of just about

      any type of medication from reps, except for controlled substances

      and antibiotics (they do get some antibiotics, but anything that has

      a fast experation date won’t be available). Explain that your income

      is limited for a while, and you can’t afford to get the

      perscription. My doctor will usually give me a month’s supply in


      Limit driving to the bare minimum, and make sure to combine errends

      when at all possible, to cut back on the cost of gas.

      Hope those help some

      Heather in MI

      — In Budget101_@yahoogroups.com, “maria”



      > need any and all ideas,tips,and or sites to help me save money in


      > areas while living on one income(sons disablity.)Thanks

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