Save a little green

From the editor

No matter if you are rich or poor or smack dab in the middle, the price of gas and groceries is probably cutting into your budget and making you think a little longer on the big purchases, such as a new car, and maybe even about the little splurges you used to take for granted.

It seems everyone is talking about the economy, from the presidential candidates to the woman who sells you your morning coffee. With back-to-school shopping just behind us and holiday shopping just ahead of us, we all might be feeling a little uncertain, especially with the daily media headlines of job cuts and layoffs.

In my house, my wonderful husband handles all the worry about money and the bills, so I was shocked the other day to discover I’m spending more than $500 a month on gas getting to and from work and getting the kids to dance classes. Add to that the $800 a month I’m spending on groceries and suddenly I see the writing on the wall: I definitely need to find more ways to save money. If you do, too, this month’s issue offers some really great ideas.

One of the many reasons I love Chicago Parent is the parents who are so willing to share what works and what doesn’t work to help each other. You get the fact that we are all together in this wondrous, exhilarating, and sometimes exhausting, role of raising our children as best we can. This month, parents share their own best tips for navigating around a tighter wallet and you’ll find even more online at Please feel free to add your ideas in the discussion forums as you think of them.

We also found a few ideas for saving money at the grocery store. One involves using the freezer more often for meal planning and we’ve offered you a few yummy recipes that can be made cheaply and still be nutritious for your family.

Then there’s that crazy price of gas that can fluctuate radically overnight. While going green with your next vehicle might or might not ultimately save you money in gas, we’ve broken down some of the best family-friendly green cars, should you be in the market. We’ve also included some tips on saving gas in your existing vehicles.

Of course the economy will rebound and we can go happily back to the way we did things before it softened. But if we learn a few new money-saving tricks and make a few changes now in how we live, we’ll be all that much better off when the economy makes its uptick.

Have a great September.

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