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Chester Country Library in Exton, PA- Borrow books, DVDs, and save money!

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This past week, my four-year old and I made our usual, highly-anticipated weekly trip to the Chester County Library in Exton. I absolutely love that place. It’s enormous, it’s peaceful, beautifully organized, meticulously tidy.  Basically, it’s everything my kitchen is not, but I digress.Chester County Library in Exton, PA.

This last week, as Robbie and I made our way through the aisles and collected our books and videos for the week, I started thinking, frugalista-style, as to how much money this one trip was saving our household. Even I was surprised. Six books for Robbie – which if purchased retail would be eagerly read and then rapidly discarded – would have cost $65.  Instead, we eagerly read them day one and dropped them back in the return slot within 48 hours.  

Money saved: $65

Our household also finds itself among the zillions out there that is embracing gluten free eating. It’s had a fabulously beneficial effect on us, but it can also be ridiculously expensive!  To the rescue: countless books on gluten free living!  No need to buy pricey meals out, or expensive ready-made meals at the supermarket – have a look at any of the outstanding books on the subject (better yet, check them out for a week or two!), and learn some easy skills that will save you hundreds on your grocery bill.  Don’t bother buying the books for retail.  Rather, check them out, look them over, and copy the recipes you love on the library’s copy machine.  

Money saved: $50+ for cookbooks, plus heaven-knows-how-much on the gluten free meals you can now create at home!photo: dvdyourmemories.com

Then, there’s the enormous DVD section, which I like to call “Date Night for Frugalistas.” Amongst all of the newer offerings this week was “Tower Heist," with Ben Stiller, Eddie Murphy, Matthew Broderick, Casey Affleck and Alan Alda.

Considering my husband I adore just about everyone on the lineup, I grabbed it and ran to checkout. Okay, I walked – we’re talking about a library, after all – show some respect.  (And I was holding six books, a four year old and a DVD to boot.)  If I had seen this fabulous flick in the theatre, the cost of tickets, snacks, babysitter, gasoline, etc. would have easily totaled $50.  Instead, we watched it at home, popcorn and sodas in hand - after the kids went to bed – for $3.  

Money saved: $47

All in all, I found myself tallying up over $160 in savings on one weekly trip – save that every week and we’re talking about $8,320 in yearly savings!  That kind of cash can buy you all kinds of gluten free deliciousness to cook up at home, no?

One more reason to love your local library – they have dozens of classes every month, many devoted to saving you even more money!  Case in point (and shameless self-promoting plug), my upcoming Brilliant Frugal Living Lecture “Give Yourself a $5,000-$10,000 Raise This Year!” scheduled at the Chester County Library in Exton at 7:00P on Monday, April 30th, where I’ll share my top strategies for saving your household thousands of dollars in one year’s time.

If you’re free, jump online to www.ccls.org, or give Melissa a call at 610-280-2624 to register. I’d love to see you there!  If you get there early, I’ll be the one on the comfy couch with her nose buried in the well-read copy of “Living Gluten Free For Dummies.”  

Frugal On!

Kristen Hagopian hosts “The Brilliant Frugal Living Show” Tuesdays at 11A on Philadelphia’s WFYL 1180AM.  Her next Brilliant Frugal Living Conference is October 22nd in West Chester, with $5 of every ticket sold being donated to the Chester County Food Bank to assist families in need.  Log onto www.BrilliantFrugalLiving.com for more information!

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library photo: dsf.chesco.org

dvd photos: dvdyourmemories.com