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Q&A: Amy Suardi, the Frugal Mama

Amy Suardi prefers the simple life. That’s why the Terrace Park native and mother of four created Frugal Mama, a money-savers blog that has gotten the attention of national media outlets like TLC and The Washington Post. Now living in Washington, D.C., Suardi explains the mindset behind

Why did you start blogging?

I realized that it is possible to live a high-quality family life on not much money. I started getting more interested in the free-play kids movement, where kids are playing on the playground, reading, drawing, coming up with their own games, and it’s all basically free.

What is a frugal life?

It’s not playing the same game as the mainstream culture. It’s taking yourself out of the competition for who has the biggest house, the nicest car. I realized I could not compete with my friends who had things like that. So I had to find my own satisfaction in doing as much as I could for little. Frugal is green. It’s slow. It’s simple. It ties into a lot of movements that are good for us in general.

How has your blog evolved?

It’s gone through several changes. I thought that I would try to turn the blog into a business. A lot of people try to monetize their blogs because they’re spending so much time on them. I found that that was impossible to do and also maintain the life that I was writing about. I like living this life just as much as I like writing about it.

Originally published in the January 2013 issue.