I enjoy reading books about saving money. Not so much for the tips - they are often similar between books. But I read them more for the personal stories behind the money-saving tips, as well as specific ideas that work for that particular family.
So I was excited when I was asked to read The Good Life for Less: Giving Your Family Great Meals, Good Times, and a Happy Home on a Budget by Amy Allen Clark with Jana Murphy. Clark is the creator of MomAdvice.com, an online community where mothers and homemakers can discuss the issues that are most important to them. (I link up my giveaways to The Motherload, one of the MomAdvice blogs.)
She starts the book with her personal journey to frugality - always my favorite part of these kinds of books! She then presents how to make and stick to a budget - the downfall of so many. I really like her suggestions on double-checking every bill you receive, and her advice on checking medical bills is so vitally important to all of us trying to keep our health care expenses low.
Then, she moves on to the kitchen, where so much of our energy and time is spent. She gives lots of ideas of keeping a frugal yet generous kitchen, and there are 75 pages full of great recipe ideas, from do-it-yourself mixes to an entire menu of soups, main dishes, breads, and desserts. The recipes look easy to follow and delicious! I also loved her advice to have five "magic meals," which can be made entirely of ingredients that you have in your pantry. I know that some days I just forget to purchase a needed ingredient or to defrost meat I planned to make; it's a great idea to be prepared for these kinds of days, since I know they will happen at some point.
Lastly, she gives some great tips on saving money during special occasions like Christmas, birthdays and family gatherings, and gives good advice on keeping your home clean and organized while on a budget.
Overall, I enjoyed this book. There wasn't anything too groundbreaking in its advice, but I will definitely keep it around for the recipes, as well as for an occasional read to pick up a new idea or remember an old one.
Would you like to read The Good Life for Less? It's available at Amazon.com, or ask at your local bookstore. I hope you enjoy the book!
(I received a free copy of this book for review. All opinions are 100% mine. This post may contain affiliate links. Please see my disclosure policy for more information.)