It has become my norm.
My dh once again left for work yesterday. I have no idea how long he will be away this time. I almost never do. Usually he averages 3-4 weeks and then he comes home for a week. This week was cut shorter on account of being robbed. Those days of driving home rather than flying, cost him home time as well. While I never like it when he leaves, this is the reality of the job he has.
Another reality is that we spend a lot more money when my dh is home or at least to me it sure seems we do! For most people, this spending would probably be considered normal. I'm just so used to not spending much of anything while he is away that I feel like we are spending like drunken sailors when he is home. No offense to sailors as I once was one...albeit not a drunken one! Unless there is an unexpected expense (as was in the case of replacing his wallet and the contents), we have been sticking to our budget so I am happy about that.
For me I view my dh's time away as a time to live as frugally as I can. Nothing too weird like some of the extreme tightwads you see on some reality shows. I just watch for ways to spend as little as possible and cut back where I can. I'd rather save that money for when my dh is home or use it to eliminate some of our debt.
Today I washed sheets and hung them to dry. We have a two story home with a loft and also heat primarily with wood. Our upstairs tends to get very hot so it makes an excellent place to dry laundry. I grew up with my mom hanging laundry so I'm used to it. My dh did too. He, however, was always embarrassed by his mom doing this. For neither of our parents was it a matter of necessity. Both sets of parents just happened to grown up during the depression so they learned to watch what they spent. Many of us (including myself) could take a lesson from that. Anyhow, dh is okay with me hanging things inside the house but absolutely doesn't want me to use an outdoors clothesline. I tried using the argument that it was the "green" thing to do, but he wasn't having it. I've learned to pick my battles and this one just isn't worth the fight. At least I save a little by not using the dryer all the time.
Food is another area I save on when dh is away. My meals are simpler, yet still healthy. I'm often content with a yogurt and a piece of fruit for a meal whereas dh is definitely a meat and potatoes kind of guy. I mostly drink coffee and water. When dh is home I make sure we have other things available.
Utilities also go down. Dh likes to turn the furnace on in the morning to take the chill out of the house. The temperature often drops to around 60 when the fire goes out. Unless it is extremely cold outside (single digits) I can usually bring the house back up to a comfortable 70+ degrees within an hour or so. Again, not worth the battle over a little propane.
Yet another area I save is on gas for the car. I tend to stay home a lot more when dh is away. When I do go out, I try to combine my trips. We live a good distance from town so it really does save a lot on gas by watching this.
What are some things you do to live a little more frugally?