Thursday, 28 July 2016

Thrive Through Thrift Thursday - July 2016

"Thrift is the basis of Self-Help, and the foundation of much that is excellent in Character." ~ Samuel Smiles

According to Samuel Smiles thrift meant private economy, and that it is the object of private economy to create and promote the well-being of individuals. He went on to write in his book Thrift that "Wealth is obtained by labour; it is preserved by savings and accumulations; and it is increased by diligence and perseverance."

That does contrast quite markedly with today's consumer culture. It is interesting that Smiles thought that economy was not a natural instinct. It is developed through growth of experience, example and forethought. Today we are lucky to have many examples we can turn to on the internet for inspiration and information regarding exercising wise economy in the home. I have some of these blogs listed on the right hand side of my blog under the heading Inspiration and Information. These blogs are my "go to" places when I need help or just  motivation to keep on going on my path.

What I have done this month to thrive through thrift:


  • This month all nine ceiling fans were cleaned mostly by me but Don did clean two of them.
  • Don finished the repairs to the railings and gates around the pergola. They also have a nice fresh coat of paint.
  • I cleaned the bathroom vanity cupboard and drawers and reorganised contents, including our stockpile of shampoo, soaps etc. I also cleaned out the bathroom vanity drawers and reorganised the contents such as putting numerous tubes of lipsticks into a ziplock bag. I also washed my makeup brushes.
  • I e-tidied by removing some old internet bookmarks.
  • I have made some very slow progress on the vest I am knitting.
  • We were gifted some food this month- both produce and cooked meals, and all the rest of our meals were made from scratch.
  • Prepared weekly menus
  • Prepared shopping lists for groceries
  • Topped up the soil in the keyhole garden ready for planting out.
  • Planted out a Wisteria tree and a Rose of Sharon shrub.
  • Created a scale plan for our perennial food garden. Morag Gamble has provided the inspiration for my efforts in this area. 
  • Re-potted our elderberry cuttings - these were gifted to us some time back.


  • I saved money by doing my own pedicure.
  • Don saved money by repairing and re-painting the pergola railings himself rather than paying someone else to do this.

New Practices

  • I lifted my chive plant and divided it to make more plants. I haven't divided this plant before so I am hoping I haven't killed it!

Today I am letting Samuel Smiles have the last word

"But thrift is not a natural instinct. It is an acquired principle of conduct. It involves self-denial--the denial of present enjoyment for future, good--the subordination of animal appetite to reason, forethought, and prudence. It works for to-day, but also provides for to-morrow. It invests the capital it has saved, and makes provision for the future."


  1. You have had a busy month, Sherri. I got more done in the week when it was warm than I have during the rest of the month. It is warming up again so I hope I become more motivated then.

    1. I didn't get as much done in the garden as I would have liked Chel due to the rainy weather during the month. However the last week or so has been perfect gardening weather. I hope the warm weather hangs around out your way, I remember how cold it can get where you are. Brrr.

  2. Thank you Sherri. I had not heard of the book "Thrift" but found it online to read for free! It is a great read and so relevant for todays economy.

    1. I have an "Aha" moment every time I dip into that book Kaye.

  3. I am slowly realising that thrift is a much more mature and well-rounded way of living that just the single dimension of frugality. I remember you telling me to think about the wider topic of thrift about 18 months ago.....that planted seed is growing for sure.

    1. I like the way Samuel Smiles expressed the thought that wealth is preserved by savings and accumulations. This was what I was trying to say in the comment on your blog a few days back but couldn't express myself so clearly or succinctly as Mr Smiles managed to do. Cheers.