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~March No-Spend Challenge~ The Day of Reckoning...how did you do? What did you learn? What will... - Page 2

post #21 of 636
I really need to do this in March. I had a rough February with dh's grandma dying, finding out I was expecting #4 and then having a miscarriage. I really need to get things back together.

a. Who you are
My name is Heather. I'm a SAHM of 3 kids.

b. Where you are going (your financial goals) and
I'm paying off debt.

c. How you plan to get there
The things that will ultimately help us will be to make a menu and eat out of the pantry more to keep grocery costs down, no new clothes unless it's very deep clearance for an item needed (kids are all outgrowing their clothes), and making a realistic entertainment budget and sticking to it. The month of March has my dd's birthday and our 10th anniversary. We are driving the kids to grandma's house over spring break and we'll come back home. It'll only be for 3 or 4 days, but it will be nice to relax and do some stuff as a couple.

10 no spend days
$400 grocery/eating out (not including anniversary)
$200 gas
$500? entertainment (anniversary and bday party)
make $50 selling stuff
post #22 of 636
Thread Starter 
Welcome newcomers!
post #23 of 636
Hi all.

I'm gearing up for March.

I'm a single mom currently living with my parents, but planning to buy a house in the next two months. I earn very little right now (I work for my parents too) but once on my own, my salary still won't be that much after the house payment. That's all fine and dandy, I'm just working on being really frugal.

My pitfall is that I'm an emotional spender. If I'm feeling blue, I head to the store.

So, I need to avoid that.

And I have to take my kids to NY (from WY) to their dad's house every month for 4 days and those days I tend to blow my whole budget. I'm just lonely and sad and end up wandering stores, buying things I don't need.

I also plan to pay off as much of my credit card debt as I can with my tax refunds. I need someone to hold me to that goal b/c I can think of a lot of other uses for $10,000. But, it'll feel good to get those cards off my back (and are required for buying that house.)

So, my goals are as follows:

* 10 no spend days
* $100 total (cash) for food/entertainment while in NY (I plan to do a cleanse while I'm there next month, so this should more than cover it.)
* $50 misc total for the month
post #24 of 636
2/25 - : -$20
2/26 - : -$13
2/27 - :

1/15 :, $33/$150 :
post #25 of 636
a. Who you are: Lactivistmama, mama to 2, also a student and a working mama..

b. Where you are going (your financial goals)
we are going to Disneyland in Oct., so I really need to start saving for that, we are also trying to get more $$ in our Emergency fund, and I have a few "larger purchases" coming up in the next few months.. so I must save NOW!

c. How you plan to get there
Budget, budget, budget..
Keep grocery under $100 a week..
post #26 of 636
i'm in for march!!

i'm carrie. i've stalked this thread for months because i always had just one more co-op to finish but this time i'm stepping up!

we have a goal of moving next year and we are trying to save $5,000 to do that. so far, we've not done well with sticking to the budget but i vow this month it will happen!! i'm hoping to come in under budget for food since we just did a HUGE stock up run.

so, goals for me:

21/31 no spend days
10/31 budgeted spending
non-budgeted spending
29/31 get outside days : (i know this has nothing to do with money but it's needed)

28- :
post #27 of 636
Originally Posted by Crunchy*VT*Mom View Post
oooh...that would be lethal for me...
yeh...my goal this year ios once in spring and not again until fall.

last time i was there the girls behind the counter said "oh, you got your hair cut".....i was like "omg im obviously here wayyy tooo much" lol

in my defense though, its the only place i shop for my kids
post #28 of 636
I dropped out of February, partially because my budget got demoloished due to a couple of spending sprees and so I was to depressed to report that yes, I had another no-spend day but that didn't make up for the falling off the wagon and the fact I had no money at all to spend.

But this month is going to be better!

a. I am a substitute teacher which has made budgeting very difficult for me in the past. Luckily, this month I have a full time teaching job until at least early April so that makes budgeting a little easier for now.

b. Financial goals include paying off my provincial loan, starting paying back my federal loan, and paying down some more of my CC debt.

c. I'm going to keep track of my spending but this month I don't have as strict a budget so it'll be easier to stick to. So I'm giving myself $150 spending money for the first two weeks and $150 for the second two weeks.
post #29 of 636
joining in- will post more later- I have done pretty well on personal spending lately- my only personal spending was $27 last month for new panties (to replace holey ones)! But grocery spending is my downfall- I have some bulk items(chicken and beef) to buy so I need to cut back there. I amhoping for $250 for that and $75 for eating out- will be doing cash budgeting.
post #30 of 636
I am seriously thinking about doing cash budgeting for my food spending this month. How much are the points on the Amex really worth, anyway? And whatever's left over at the end of the month could go in my cash drawer for upcoming expenses! We get paid 02/28, so I may take out my $500 and put it in an envelope today.

Another thing I really want to do is organize some closets and drawers. I'm terrible about sticking a purchase out of sight and forgetting all about it, so this process should yield some goodies for my birthday/holiday gift stockpile.
post #31 of 636
I'm Michelle. On Monday I start back to work part time from maternity leave.

Our goals: fit in the budget the money for a mortgage payment. We either need to buy a new house (current one is paid for) or finish the basement. We don't have enough in savings to pay cash for either upgrade so it will be a loan. We need to find the money without dipping into what we are putting away for college/retirement.

How will we get there...tracking spending for the month. I have an allowance and I will be seeing how well I do. Then we'll go from there.
post #32 of 636
These threads have been so, so helpful to me the past 2 months! Somehow no other method (spreadsheets, notebooks) has ever worked for me in keeping track of spending and financial goals. Now it is starting to become a habit to make a mental note of every penny I spend (and to think twice about spending in the first place).

Who I am: Part-time WOHM to 3-year-old DD, with Little Guy due to arrive 5/09.

Financial goals: Just paid off last credit card, so no debt right now except mortgage. Current goal is to sock away money for my maternity leave (which starts in April) and also save $ for a new(er) vehicle which we plan to buy in September, preferably without needing a car loan. Another goal is to work much less after new baby is here (cutting down to 10-12 hrs/wk), so all the more reason to reduce expenses.

How we plan to get there: Continuing to make a plan for each month and sticking to it. Coupons and sales to reduce grocery expenses. Continuing to use cash envelope system for groceries and other day-to-day expenses. Avoiding thrift stores and paperbackswap (used books are my downfall)- using library instead. And using this thread to keep myself accountable!

March budget and goals:

Groceries $450
Gas $65
Homeschool stuff $20
Kid clothing $20
New baby items- $300 carseat, $40 for misc, $55 for cloth dipes
: <$20 self spending
No spend days 0/20
Declutter days 0/10
post #33 of 636
a. Who you are...
My name is Kim; I am a SAHM/PT WAHM (freelance writer/PR) to 2 great little kids. DH works FT and also goes to school FT.

b. Where you are going (your financial goals)...
1. Keep budget in the black + stick to it.
2. Continue to hit the debt snowball hard.
3. March - Break $240K in debt paid off since we began to snowball in Feb. 2008.

c. How you plan to get there...
2. Sell/donate unneeded items
4. No more late library materials! Or parking tickets!
5. ORGANIZE! Majority of overbudget/frivolous spending can be prevented with improved organization.
6. Exercise: feeling good = decreased emotional spending

* Write Daily: 0/31
* Less than $25 in frivolous spending: month to date $0
* At least 25 days (no spend or spending w/in budget): 0/25
* NO library fines: month to date $0 / NO parking tickets: $0
* Stay within grocery/eating out budget: $0/$600
* ORGANIZE/declutter (lack of organization = spending): 0/25
* Exercise (feeling good = decreased emotional spending): 0/25
* Meal plan created: 0/4 weeks

Previous months:
June '07: 20 days; $210.42 frivolous; $519.54 groceries; $117.55 eating out
July '07: 16 days; $325.62 frivolous; $825.40 groceries; $112.84 eating out
Aug. '07: 23 days; $144.47 frivolous; $593.09 groceries; $643.07 eating out
Sept. '07: 22 days; $128.37 frivolous; $598.19 groceries; $121.48 eating out
Oct. '07: 25 days; $139.55 frivolous; $472 groceries; $129.55 eating out
Nov. '07: 25 days; $192.50 frivolous; $608 groceries; $101 eating out
Dec. '07: 28 days; $55.20 frivolous; $503 groceries
Jan. '08: 27 days; $19.90 frivolous; $555.85 groceries/eating out
Feb. '08: 18 days; $131.80 frivolous; $668 groceries/eating out
March '08: 28 days; $19.40 frivolous; $500 groceries/eating out
April '08: 24 days; $39.16 frivolous; $768.65 groceries/eating out
May '08: 21 days; $53.41 frivolous; $920 groceries/eating out, 23 Organize/Declutter days, 26 Exercise days
June '08: 21 days; $137.20 frivolous; $621 groceries/eating out, 17 Organize/Declutter days, 23 Exercise days
July '08: 20 days; $88.44 frivolous; $892 groceries/eating out, 15 Organize/Declutter days, 20 Exercise days
Aug. '08: 21 days; $286.33 frivolous; $740.81 groceries/eating out, 27 Organize/Declutter days, 21 Exercise days
Sept. '08: FIDO
Oct. '08: 27 days; $18 frivolous; $769.02 groceries/eating out, 21 Organize/Declutter days, 25 Exercise days
Nov. '08: 23 days; $55 frivolous; $1,178.77 groceries/eating out, 24 Organize/Declutter days, 14 Exercise days
Dec. '08: 25 days; $8.95 frivolous; $859.01 groceries/eating out, 27 Organize/Declutter days, 14 Exercise days
Jan. '09: Got away from me...onward!
Feb. '09: 22 days; $110.51 frivolous; $740.94 groceries/eating out, 26 Organize/Declutter days, 16 Exercise days, 18 Writing days
post #34 of 636
I am back again, but hoping to do better this time. I really didn't spend that much last month, but did buy a new ipod and some other random things. I also ate out more than I wanted to... so this months goals:

$50 eating out budget!
$50 household budget... I need some jars.
$850 food... we eat tons of fresh fruits and veggies and I can't seem to get this lower.

1st: $231 Food; $124 vitamins; $52 DH's ipod
post #35 of 636
Originally Posted by becoming View Post
Coming back to set my goals for March.

12 no-spend days (up from a goal of 10 last time)
16 eat-at-home days
$700 or less on groceries/household expenses
$250 or less on eating out
$2000 to savings

- no-spend day
- only necessary spending
- planned unnecessary spending
- totally blew it
Ha, this is the first time I've ever quoted myself.

I came back to edit my goals. The above goals are a little too high. Here are my actual goals for March:

12 no-spend days (up from a goal of 10 last time)
16 eat-at-home days
$500 or less on groceries/household expenses
$200 or less on eating out
$2000 to savings
post #36 of 636
Hi. I'm back. I am - Mittenskittens, mom of two. I got laid off last month and am trying to survive on as little as possible until the situation improves. I will try for 15 no spend days, and no more than the necessities this month. I am having a hard time because I comfort spend, and I like take out coffees . So I will come on here to keep myself accountable.
post #37 of 636
Hmmm. This is intriguing ladies!

I'll start small, because if I fail miserably I'll be hiding too long to come back and 'fess up.

Our family goal is to pay off debt in 5-7 years, including our house, and save up to full-time RV across the country.

My personal struggle is not meal planning lunches, so we end up 'grabbing something' while we're running around. I don't really spend a lot of money on incidental impulse crap too much, as I'm a tightwad by nature. But I'm sure our budget would be happier without my stops at the gas station or the drive through.

So, I think I'll set a goal of only 1x/week impulse gas station/drive through run.

Now, DH loves to eat out...a lot...what do you guys do about DH pressure to spend?
post #38 of 636
Who are you?

I'm SAHMama to my 2 ds who are 6 and 2

Where are you going

Snowballing off debt to be gone by end '09 and then we will lump off mortgage to be paid in 10 years or less. My biggest problem areas (apart from dh!) are going over food budget and amazon book purchases.

How do you plan there?

Stick to 400 grocery budget
No amazon purchases this month
No unbudgeted spend
No library fines
post #39 of 636
Hi all, swooping in from February. I set a budget for the pay period for all flexible expenses, including food and gas for my family and report here trying to stick to that. So here goes!

Phew.... not a no spend weekend. But that's okay, it works with my goals.

My husband got me a 2 year magazine subscription that took a while to be billed, so in it goes!

I got a tea infuser so I can drink my pound of red raspberry leaf tea (3rd trimester now) and a new shirt. I very rarely get new clothes (I think I got a new shirt last September... that's it) so that was a special treat. So was the yarn, although half of it is a gift.

On the other hand, we really capitalized on the loss leaders at the grocery store today so we probably won't need much in the way of groceries for a while even with my parents visiting for half of this coming week. They also usually get their own groceries.

2/26 : , savings $0.16, eating out that took days to finally clear $7.84
2/27 yarn $24.96, magazine $38.00, pizza $16.20
2/28 groceries $57.71, tea infuser of awesome $14.03, new shirt for me $13.42

The spending I track is all spending other than bills, including gas and food for our family of 3+.


Use reusable bags for all shopping trips (1/4)
Total non-bill spending ($172.32/$225.00)
No spend days
No drive days :
post #40 of 636
I'm in. Kathee, part-time WOHM, part-time SAHM. Wife to a military man. We have no debt, but are trying to aggressively save money this year in our savings account, a CD ladder, and our IRAs. The goal is to save approximately 40% of DH's salary this year (my salary is variable and temporary, and we use it for splurges/extras and never ever depend on it). We saved just over a third last year, so, we're hoping (and, more importantly, planning ). Short-term goals include looking into a new car for me. Mine is 10 years old, with 130K miles. We've been "looking" for 3 years now, but, for now, we're sticking with her. Long-term goals include having enough to put down a sizeable down payment (preferably about 50%) on a home when DH retires from the army in 10-16 years.

I actually have a budget that's all set up, including what I call a "slush" fund, which is any of the little incidentals that pop up (say, DH needs a ribbon for work, or whatever).

I've got a Just Tomatoes order built into my budget already, since I know that's coming up on a coop board I'm on. Other than that, it should just be the usuals. I am still trying to figure out a Frontier coop this month.

I have to figure out what my exact goals will be, and I'll be back.
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Mothering › Mothering Forums › Natural Living › The Mindful Home › Frugality & Finances › ~March No-Spend Challenge~ The Day of Reckoning...how did you do? What did you learn? What will you do differently next month?