How Frugal Fairfield Was Born


I am an info junkie, yes I admit it.  Some people collect Pez.  I collect information.  In my family, we read all the time. On weekend mornings you would find my family relaxing around the Saarinen table under the warm glow of the Venini Murano lamp reading the New York Times.  My father would often find something of interest and he would read it aloud to my brother, my mother and me.  Maybe that’s where it started. Always learning, always asking questions. 

We were library people. And this was of course before the internet existed.  If I had a school paper to write my mom would drive me to the local library and I would take out every book I could find on my subject.  And the arts were the fabric that wove throughout our lives.  My dad and mom had studied at the Institute of Design in Chicago—he, graphic design and she, photography.  My mom used to buy so many art supplies that the store thought she was running a preschool. One wall of the sunroom was painted with blackboard paint so we could draw on the walls.   Though we were not rich, we were wealthy in the enrichment in our lives as it revolved around the arts, music and general culture. I would come to learn that my parents had worked and studied with some of the best known names in the art world.  At times these people passed through our front door, but we never thought much about it, just friends of the family.

My parents taught me how to make every penny count too.  They were “Depression Babies” they understood the value of a dollar earned.  We went to early bird movies, museums on days that they were free, day camps offered by the parks or school system. I was well trained to be frugal. And frugal is not about being cheap. It’s about money well spent. It’s about value. It’s about making the most with what you have.

So you basically take someone who has endless curiosity, with great appreciation for art, music, culture and mix it with infinite access to information, now that internet does exist, and a mindset geared towards finding things “on the cheap” and that’s how Frugal Fairfield was born. It’s about having fun without breaking the bank.  It’s about living in an area where some of the richest people in the world live and living well but not spending a lot.  I have been doing this informally for many years. Building this website is just about making it easier to share the “wealth” broadly, easily, so we can all enjoy.