The philosophy of Budget Savvy is to save on the things that aren’t as important to you so you can afford the things that are important to you. What do you save on and what do you splurge on?
I save on the necessities of life. I stock up on sale items. I never buy anything that is not on sale.
I splurge on Procter and Gamble products. I believe in their products and even when times were tough, I figured out a way to afford them through coupons and sales. I also splurge on making memories for my family with vacations. Also, I attend a spa once a month. It keeps me sane.
Where do you shop for food and what is your system?
I am quite well stocked at all times. I have a running list of what we are out of or low on.
I go through the Sunday sales ads and decide what our meals will be from there. I also coordinate my list by the coupons I have. I do not buy anything that is not on the list.
I typically go to four stores starting with Sam's Club for bulk items. I go to the bulk organic store for flour and other baking goods. I buy organic flour 50 pounds at a time and then freeze it. (She has four deep freezers.)
I go to the local grocery store for sale items. The produce I purchase from a local Amish man who does not use pesticides. Also, I purchased a ½ a cow from an organic farm. It was much cheaper than buying organic meat from the grocery store.
Do you ever have leftovers?
There are never any leftovers.
Where do you shop for clothes and do you have a system for it?
There is a constant shoe shuffle. Each child has three pairs of shoes – good, such as for church, casual and play shoes. No new shoes are ever used as play shoes. This helps the new shoes stay good. I had bins organized by shoe size to store hand me down shoes. I also purchase shoes from Payless with coupons.
I am grateful for hand me downs and put them to good use! As for Jon and I, in the beginning our wardrobe suffered.
How much of your time is spent in planning or virtually being the CEO of the Gosselin family?
Ninety five percent of my time is dedicated to planning. Planning the schedule, paying bills, planning the grocery shopping. It is an enjoyable challenge.
How do you make events special for the kids, birthdays, etc?
The kid's still say "our birthday". We sing happy birthday six times, once for each child. They each get an individual gift that they get excited about.
A few things I found particular interesting in my conversation with Kate.
Kate loves to cook and she is very conscientious about what her family eats. She only purchases organic products and she cooks all their meals from scratch – except on exceptionally busy film days. On those days, craft services delivers organic meals for her family as well as the film crew.
She is one highly organized individual. Like any good CEO, she tries to stay five steps ahead and is always rethinking the family's processes to make them smoother.
If you want to read more about Kate and the rest of the Gosselin family, pick up a copy of their book, Multiple Blessings: Surviving and Thriving with Twins and Sextuplets.