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Archive for August, 2012

Wednesday frugal

August 23rd, 2012 at 04:44 pm

My teeny tiny frugal thing done for Wednesday was to flip my shampoo bottle over so that I can get the very last bit out of it! It's such a habit, I never even thought about putting it on here--but it is something frugal!

Looking forward to a quiet night tonight. Bf is out of town, so it's going to be a night of curling up on the couch with the cats! I have some shows on the DVR and a good book to read, so I'm not worried about being bored. I love nights like tonight!

Sunday, Monday, Tuesday

August 21st, 2012 at 09:50 pm

What frugal things have I done?

Sunday: spent NO money. Stayed home, cleaned the house, didn't surf shopping sites. Very frugal.

Monday: darned a black sock where I wore a hole in the toe. It's not perfect, but my toe doesn't poke through!

Tuesday: going to a work picnic for the free dinner food!

For the first time in a long time, I'm excited about something. One of my aunts posted a picture on facebook of her in full backpacking gear. I commented on it and we've started a discussion about maybe going for an out-and-back hike with gear on our backs. I'm geeked about this! I've read so much about people who hike and I've always wanted to do it. But the cost outlay for all the gear is scarily expensive and I didn't want to take the plunge without trying it out first. She has offered to go on a weekend trip with me. YIPPEE!!!!

I've done day hikes, but nothing that involved a full pack. I'm thrilled that I might be doing that sometime in September.

Heh, I guess it's 31

August 18th, 2012 at 08:55 pm

31 days of frugal. Since August is a 31 day month, I guess I'll be doing 31 days instead of 30 days. Oh well, it's worth a shot.

Thanks to all that might join me in my daily frugalness! Feel free to comment or post on your own blog what you've done for the day to be frugal.

Yesterday at work we had pizza for lunch. It's getting near the start of classes, so we normally get a few free meals out of it. They ordered a lot of pizza and had leftovers. At the end of the day, they told people to take pizza home--so I took home most of a large "everything" pizza to eat for the next few days. Free pizza!

Spent a bit of money yesterday and today. I seem to not spend any extra money for a while, then once I spend some on a non-essential, it seems to open a dam and I buy a few other things on my want list. Yesterday I bought new headphones for my iphone (mine no longer work clearly). Today new undies, nail polish, bubble bath, a pair of running shorts, and two pairs of pants (admittedly, these came from Goodwill). I'm not spending 100s of dollars, but spent a bit more than if I had just stuck to the basics. Weeee!

I also want to say that a while ago, I was reading an essay where the woman said that she always felt like she could never have "nice" stuff. That she wasn't quite good enough to have nice things. I kinda knew what she meant. I will wear undies until they are in pretty sorry shape, then hem and haw about buying new. I decided to not feel that way and buy them before what I was wearing was falling apart!! Smile It helped that they were on sale!

Can you say "justification?" I can do it all day long!

Frugal:
8/16 cut open toothpaste tube
8/17 took home leftover pizza
8/18 shopped at Goodwill

I need a schtick

August 17th, 2012 at 08:32 pm

I need incentive to write in here. I need a new schtick. When I was doing the low spend month, I did really well at writing. Now that I don't have something to really update, I don't write.

So I thought of a new schtick. For the next 30 days (August 16 - September 15), I'm going to see if I can pinpoint something frugal I did that day. I don't know if I have 30 days worth, but I'm going to try.

August 16: I cut open my toothpaste tube to get one more use out of the toothpaste before tossing it.

Update on my monthly goals:
Track all WW: Not even close. I obviously have a problem with doing this.
10 NSDs: I have 9 so far
Save $320: I'm at $370! I didn't even realize that!
Work out 20x: I'm at 10

Wed, Thurs, Fri

August 10th, 2012 at 07:01 pm

Yay Friday! It's cool and rainy here--first time in months. I'm so glad to see the rain--we so need it.

Wednesday I did the monthly trip to Sams. Because of how bf and I divide up our expenses, I go to Sams and shop--he pays for it. Well, as long as it is household stuff. If it is obviously something just for me (say, a book or a shirt), I'll take that out before telling him how much he needs to pay me back.

Anyhoo, I worked, went to yoga until 6:45, then drove the 1/2 hour to Sams. I bought a Diet Coke (gotta quit those things!) to fortify me for the shopping ahead when I left yoga. Spent $234 at Sams, but none of it was totally mine. So that isn't actually $$$$ out of pocket. Then I went next door to WalMart to use the $50 in gift cards I have accumulated. Ended up spending $14 out of pocket. Bought boring stuff like dry milk powder, Febreeze for laundry, dry cat food, and coffee beans. Went to McDs for dinner and bought bf pizza from his favorite pizza place. I didn't get home until 9:30. Whew. I just don't really like shopping. I get in, get the stuff on my list, and get out.

Thursday was a NSD, thanks to the spin class teacher working us extremely hard. I was sweating buckets. Yuck-o. That was my last spin class until mid-September because of the change in my work schedule. I'll be working from 9 AM to 6 PM instead of 8 AM to 5 PM. So, no more spin for me! I'm excited to actually just go home from work all next week!

Today I've spent $25 at Meijer for apples, cherries, peanut butter pretzels, and tomatoes. I'll be going out for Chinese after work and I need to pick up a couple of things at Save A Lot.

It looks like on Saturday I'll be at the dirt bike track all day. Not sure what is going to happen on Sunday yet. Maybe on the boat; maybe getting some chores done around the house. I'm trying to be OK with the by-the-seat-of-the-pantsness, but I admit, I'm rather anal and would just love a plan.

I have been struggling lately with making myself do things that I know are good for me, but I just don't want to do them. Go to spin class? I don't wanna! Eat my carrots? Pfffftttt. 2 mile run before going into work? NooooooOOOOooooo. I'm not sure if it is because I'm tired or I'm doing too much or I'm just basically lazy. I'm hoping that this little break from yoga and spin will recharge me again.

Spend it on Monday

August 7th, 2012 at 08:40 pm

After 3 NSDs, I had to go grocery shopping yesterday. I spent about $23 (thanks to another Save A Lot $5 coupon!) on groceries. Also 'rented' my textbook for the Fall semester and bought some more dried apples on Amazon. Love them for keeping in my desk to add to my oatmeal in the mornings.

I finally got the approval to take my class for the fall. I am employed by a university and they allow us to take classes for free! I'm working on my 2nd bachelor's--this time in accounting. So I had to pull the trigger on the book to have it in time for classes to start later this month.

Trying for a NSD today. I'm going to spin class after work, so I'll be too sweaty to stop somewhere on my way home. At least, that's what I tell myself to keep myself away from the stores!

Incoming included returning $1.80 in cans, received my $25 WalMart gift card from mypoints (a rare occurrence meant that I had enough points for a $25 gift card. I normally cash out at $10), and $10 from my Speedway Reward Points. I also found 3 pennies in my wandering.

I have a trip to Sams in my near future and since Sams and WalMart are right next to each other, I'll be spending my gift cards then. Since I received $50 in gift cards, I put that much money towards savings out of my normal allowance money. I almost have enough reward points on my CC for another gift card--but I may pick something like Bath and Body Works this time. Can't be practical all the time, right?!?

3 NSDs

August 5th, 2012 at 10:53 pm

My car hasn't moved since Thursday. Friday was spent at home, just reading, watching some DVRed shows, and thoroughly cleaning the frige. I did read The Frugalista Files, which was OK, but didn't really apply to my life. It is a book about a woman who is learning to live on less, while still living fabulous. Well, I've never aspired to live fabulously--I just want a small house in the country and not to have to worry about looking like I'm fashionable. It was a quick read, and I expect that she pretty much just took some of her blog posts to make the book.

Saturday we woke up early and took the boat out. We didn't get home until 9 PM at night. We drove 3 hours to meet some friends and hung out on the water for something like five hours. They took us to dinner to thank us for taking us out on the boat, then we drove the 3 hours home. I was only tempted to spend money once--on the way home I was thinking of buying a Diet Coke at a gas station, but I didn't. Smile

Today was another chill day at home. I can't honestly say I've done anything really today. Did a few loads of laundry, cooked some food, ran my 2 miles, but that's about it. Took a nap. Read a few more magazines (which I will put in the free magazine bin at the library).

I really need to go shopping soon. I am running out of certain supplies, like the stuff to make homemade pudding pops. I'm trying to wait until I get my other $25 gift card for WalMart, so I can use that (and only have to go to WalMart once--I'm not a big fan of shopping there, but I'm not turning down free money either). I have my lists, but I also am playing with the idea of doing some personal shopping, not just grocery shopping. I would really like one more short sleeve running outfit.

And maybe some socks. Yeah, more socks.

What I learned

August 3rd, 2012 at 01:10 am

I will say that $300 wasn't as much of a stretch for my No Spend Month. Yeah, I only had $2 for gas at the end of the month, but I think you spend what you have. If I only had $250, I would probably still "run out" of money at the end. You fill the container you're given.

I could have cut back on a few things. Been a little cheaper about groceries, not eaten out when I did. However, I normally use at least $75 in gas for a normal month. The vast majority of that is just driving back and forth to work. This month was different because I had vacation time where I didn't need to drive to work. But I did drive up to the beach house to hang out with Mom. If I gave myself $250, then take $75 from the top for gas for work, I'm left with $175. Maybe that's do-able, maybe not.

While bf and I have separate finances (and I like it that way), I do pay for the groceries, so my No Spend Month affects him. If it didn't affect him, he wouldn't care what I did with my money. But when you don't know if you can buy lunchables for his lunch because you're running out of money...it seems a bit not fair to him. Why should he "suffer" for me trying a money experiment? (I'm only using lunchables as an example of something he may have wanted from the grocery store that I may or may not have gotten because of low funds).

We have lots of food in the house still. This did not clean out the cupboards as much as I thought it would. I don't feel I had any major breakthroughs about money and spending. I'm proud of myself for achieving my goal and I guess I could say that I could live off of $300/month if I needed to. Like, emergency.

As my rewards, I used some of my amazon gift cards to buy 3 pairs of new work out socks and a pyrex 8x8 glass pan. Spent $27 out of pocket. I love fun, funky socks. I also had Chinese for dinner last night. And now, back to normal spending life. Groceries, gas, etc. etc.

To keep up with my goals for August:

Aug 1 & 2:
Tracked WW both days
Saved $50
Worked out both days (yoga and spin)
No NSDs yet (but I anticipate the next two days could be that way)

I have a vacation day tomorrow and I just stopped at the library on my way home from work, so I hope to not leave the house and read and just hang out at home. Ahhhhhh.

Whoohoooeeeeyyyy! And Goals for August.

August 1st, 2012 at 12:55 pm

I did it! I only spent $300 for all the non-bills for the month! Yippee! Next time, I'm going to do this in February. Wink

Here is the breakdown:
Out to eat: $36 (McDs, Panera, a couple of drinks while on the road, lunch with bestie)
Food: $203
Gas: $52
Cats: $1 (kitty litter, bought with Sams club gift card)
Goodwill: $1 (soap dispenser for the squirty top to fix the doughboy by the sink)
Sunglasses: $7
Total: $300

I hope to do a longer post about what I learned from doing this. It definitely was a learning experience! I normally would have spent at least $480 for this same kind of stuff, so I did save some money. As a reward, I'm going to go shopping for some new workout socks. Cuz I'm a little weird like that.

Goals for August:
Save $340
Track all my food in weight watchers
10 NSDs
Work out at least 20 times for at least 20 minutes

Day 31 Numbers:

Spend: $2
Left: $0
In: Found a grimy dime, a nickel, and two pennies