The Scrooge Factor #ColdIsCheap

I'll be honest: there are some months we do great with budgeting and paying down debt, and other months when we get a little out of control with our spending. Stewardship is a lifelong practice, not a "once and done" lesson. However, there is one area where we are steadfast when it comes to our frugality, and that's the temperature of our house.

During the winter months, we set the thermostat on 61° (16° C) during the day, and 55° (12° C) at night. When I worked as a pharmacy tech, one of the few bright spots of the job was the fact that I knew I would be warm for the 8 hours I was there. However, considering that 55° is a good 20+ degrees warmer than our house in Lesotho on a winter morning, I often give myself a reality check that it could be - and has been - worse.

When we first started thinking about ways to save money and bumping the heat down came up as an option, we started at 69° during the day and 65° at night - and that felt cold. Over the years we have adapted to the chill, and I now recognize that my frugal tendencies are starting to become a bit more ingrained as I find myself wondering if we couldn't move it down another degree or two.

However, frugal has a price. Since I've been freelancing from home for the last year and a half, I find my frozen toes and fingers to be a bit distracting, and I look forward to taking a bathroom break because it means I can turn the wall heater on for about 2 minutes to thaw out. But there are other ways that I have learned to cope with the cold, and whether you decide to crank your thermostat down quite as far as ours or if you're just cold all the time, I have a few items that I would like to recommend that make my life a little warmer. (NOTE: No affiliated links, just honest reviews of my favorite products.)

Shortly after we returned to the States and started thinking a little more frugally, Peter gave me a pair of Wicked Good Moccasins from L.L. Bean. A pricey initial investment, these slippers have more than lived up to their name and paid for themselves as they keep my tootsies toasty. Cough up the dough (says Scrooge-ette), and put these puppies under the tree this year (they come in 5 colors - for men & women).

Available at L.L. Bean and L.L. Bean.com

Last year, Peter purchased the Biddeford Heated Micromink and Sherpa Throw from Target. Machine washable, but still a hefty little investment at $50 (though it was just on sale for $35), this blanket keeps my legs warm and toasty as I sit in our home office all day. When my fingers get too cold to type, I stuff them under the blanket for an instant warm up. Know someone cold natured? This blanket is perfect!

Available at Target and Target.com

My addition to the personal warmth factor came this fall when I popped onto Eddie Bauer's website after receiving their catalog in the mail. Normally, I stay away from EB due to the price (& fit) of their clothing, but this year, I was sucked in by the Flannel Lined Washed Pants. I put them in the online cart and let them sit for a few days, ended up hitting a sale, got free shipping and free return shipping (not needed), and they're easily my favorite winter trousers! I love the fit (though they might be a bit low rise for some), I love the feel, and I LOVE the flannel. And no, I don't wear them rolled up.

In fact, I liked them so much, I even decided to try the Flannel Lined Jeans, which also made the cut. A word of warning, however: I went with the petite (I'm 5' 2.5"), and they work great with boots, but they are RIGHT at my ankles, so if you like things a little bit longer, you may want to keep that in mind. I went with the Harbor color, and they're still a bit washed for my taste, but I love everything else about them so much, I figured I could deal with it. Best of all? They got the Husband Stamp of Approval, which is saying something.

Available at EddieBauer.com

How do YOU stay warm when the weather (or your house) gets chilly?


  1. I can't believe you don't roll them up!! :)

  2. Thanks for the ideas to keep warm. I'm going to check into the slippers and blanket. I, too, keep my house on the cold side as it's only me and my house is all electric. When the heater come on I can just 'see' the dollars leaving my checkbook. I sure enjoy your blog and always looks forward to your Friday blog of thankfulness.


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