I had never heard the term “freegan” until today. My husband pointed me to this site http://freegan.info/ that outlined some of the practices of a freegan. My basic translation is that a freegan does all they can to live life paying for little, and where possible, nothing. Being able to live without the need for much money means a reduced need for a personal finance app. Living this way allows freegans to have a job with little income (low wage/low hours). This helps reduce stress levels and the feeling that you have to work more to pay for life’s expenses. Thus you have more time to do as you want, more importantly, you have more time to be with your family.

As I read the article about freegans I thought it was a very interesting way of life, but I would have a hard time living as a true freegan. There are some frills/comforts that I do not want to live without. I think we all like a good deal, so the basis of freegan is in us all to some degree. For example,  I couldn’t pass up some outdoor chairs and a workbench I saw my neighbor getting rid of.

The workbench was taken quickly by another neighbor, but I took the outdoor chairs just before the garbage men arrived to take them and crush them in their big garbage truck. The chairs weren’t in mint condition for color, but a spray can of paint easily fixed that and would be a fraction of the cost of purchasing the chairs new. Plus it also helps prevent the trash landfill sites being filled as quickly.

I think I do live a partial freegan life where I am very happy to help anyone with my abilities/talents where I can. I think it’s very fair for anyone to ask me for help with a skill I have and I really appreciate it when people offer their skills/time/materials to me and my family. In the past, I had an older friend that had a hard time with computers. She would ask for help with learning how to use her computer, so I’d go to her house to help her get familiar with her computer. In return, she has been very kind to do my sewing repairs for me and has babysat a few or all of our kids for an hour or two. When people ask for help from me, I don’t look to receive from them what is equivalent to what I’ve done, but I am grateful for anything they give. It’s how they feel in their hearts that matters much more. It took my friend about half a day to do my sewing repairs that had been waiting already 5 years to be done (really she saved me at least 2 months of work with her few hours of work because I regularly have to split my time for all of my tasks).

Our family has saved greatly on the generosity of others around us sharing their extras with our family. Such things as toys, children’s/adults clothes, kitchen supplies, and other extra supplies. We have been able to save a great deal with having to care for a family of seven.

When living in a freegan society, don’t forget to show gratitude for what you receive (and in my case, one I don’t forget to thank is God).

It is probably safe to say Freegans would not have used a personal finance app.  However, CalendarBudget as an online budget tool embraces those frills or commodities you cannot live without and allows you a touch of freegan life at the same time.  Consider the CalendarBudget personal finance app to work towards those family extras you can also share with others.