What not to skimp on

Garbage bags/bin liners.

Now that we’ve got the underground garbage containers in Groningen, my garbage no longer gets put out on the street on a fixed day – I just toss a bag in the container when it’s full. However, rugged garbage bags are still a necessity if I want to avoid, say, a brown, ammonium-smelling stain on my carpet after parking the bag in my hallway for five minutes before leaving the house to dump the bag update: and another one in the big chair where I don’t even remember parking the bag, but must have done. And while shopping for a birthday present today, I couldn’t help thinking that the outside smelled of garbage, or worse, that maybe I did. I’m double-bagging the next batch of garbage now, and if that doesn’t work, I’ll just go back to the stronger KOMO bags.

Other quick frugality tips: when you go to the farmer’s market, strawberries should not be the first thing you buy. Wait until you’ve got everything else, so that your strawberries won’t get crushed and leak strawberry juice over your italian herbs, Feta cheese, potatoes and mixed nuts.

August 29 Update: See also Aggie’s version of what not to skimp on – it’s much longer and more thorough than this off-the-cuff post.