or Connect
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Natural Living › The Mindful Home › Frugality & Finances › ~January No-Spend Challenge~ Let's start 2010 out with a bang! Everyone is welcome to join at any time :)
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

~January No-Spend Challenge~ Let's start 2010 out with a bang! Everyone is welcome to join at any...

post #1 of 233
Thread Starter 
This post copied from Crunchy*VT*Mom with permission

This is a support thread to help you ~not spend your money~.

Everyone is welcome to join and you can start tracking your spending at any time. It doesn't have to be January 1st.

The plan is simple (although tough to execute):

1. Vow not to spend any money on unnecessary purchases.

2. Come on here everyday and record your spending.

We all record our spending in different ways. There are no rules. You record and update however you would like -- pick a way that will help you spend the least amount of money.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Please write an introductory message when you decide to join our thread. We would like to know:

a. Who you are

b. Where you are going (your financial goals) and

c. How you plan to get there

Good luck MDCers!! Keep that money in your wallet.
post #2 of 233
post #3 of 233
Thread Starter 
I didn't see one of these started yet so I got it up and started. I was going through my budget for this month and it's going to be tightened right down for us. We have almost no income this month so unfortunately it looks like we'll be dipping into savings. I need to keep our output as low as possible.

a. Who you are
~Alison... mama to two fabulous little people. I own my own business and I need to really work to get sales up this month as much as possible.

b. Where you are going (your financial goals)
~We are DR people although this month we are almost certainly going to have to dip into our BEF

c. How you plan to get there
~Keep spending as low as possible this month and work at getting income in to get back on our feet

Goals for the Month of January
1. Half the month with no spend days: 0/15
2. Unplanned spending 5 or fewer days: 0/5
3. No eating out that we pay for all month: 0/31
4. Bring in extra money from my business: 0%
5. 185 items decluttered: 0/185
6. 13 days with exercise in them: 0/13

Key:
- No Spend
- Planned Spend
- Unplanned Spend
- All meals eaten at home
- Exercise

Running Totals:
Budget set spending (tithe, rent, utilities, internet/cell, insurance, bank service fees, debt repayment, hosting fees, RESP): $0.00
Budget discretionary spending (everything else on our budget): $0.00
Groceries: $0.00
Unplanned/Uneccessary spending: $0.00
post #4 of 233
a. Who you are
Married momma of five little monkeys. I am working with a midwife, while I learn to be one myself (Living life on call is tricky! I have decided to use being on call as a reason to become prepared and organized, instead of accepting that I am always behind because of being on call.)

b. Where you are going (your financial goals)
My dh is recently (as of the day before Christmas Eve) unemployed, as weird as this may sound, I feel good about the change in our life, and am up to the challenge of getting ourselves together.

c. How you plan to get there
We actually sat down this am and wrote up our financial goals, along with a step by step plan to get there. I hung the list up in our closet, I think seeing it every day will be motivating.

In general, my goals are to take control of our finances and make the most responsible and ethical choices possible wrt where we make purchases and the resources we use doing so.

I don't need to drive much - I live across the road from the midwife I work with so I can walk to appointments, and I ride with her to births and home visits. I have to drop off/pick up the kids from school twice a week, so my plan is to be mindful about coordinating little trips one day a week, in "order" so there is no backtracking. I love to be efficient.

No Spend =
Approved Spending =
Unapproved Spending =
Ate at Home =
No Car Day =
post #5 of 233
a. I'm Denise. Mama to 2 (soon to be 3!) girls, 3 doggies, a bunny, and wife to DH. I was working out of the home 2 days/wk but just gave my 2 weeks notice. The 9th is my last day working. So our income will be reducing by around $550/month.

b. My goal is to be more mindful of my spending. Until March, our finances will be SUPER tight. So my smaller goals in January are:

-25 'no spend' days (for me this means nothing unnecessary, groceries, bills, etc. don't count!)

-20 no driving days

-Sell wedding dress (hoping to get $250-$400), massage table (hoping for $250-$300), diapers (hoping for $75), a sling (hoping for $65), and *maybe* my DSLR (which I would sell for $450 firm). If weather permits repairs to be made, sell DH's car ($500). Potential profits from $640-1790. This money would be used for a couple of baby items, then the rest would go into savings.

c. Don't drive anywhere. I don't really do a ton of online shopping, so if I'm not driving, I'm not spending. And I'm at the point in the pregnancy where my belly is getting closer to the airbag anyway (short legs) so I am naturally cutting back on my leaving and driving. It also saves gas money, so it's a double whammy.

Plan meals better. This is really hard for me and we wind up picking up pizza or going out more than we should. I need to realize my shortcomings and have more ready-made foods handy so when I don't feel like cooking, we aren't left only to eat out.

WATCH MY CELL MINUTES!!!! We just upped our plan, and I'm a week from new minutes and 100 minutes over our limit. I forgot my mom and little sister aren't on sprint anymore, and didn't adjust my usage to accomodate them not being in-network anymore. There's an easy $25 or so in overages this month.

KEY:
No-Spend:
No-Driving:
Sold something on Craigslist:
post #6 of 233
a. Who you are
Single mama of five amazing people, I'm a sahm, homeschooling my 11yo.

b. Where you are going (your financial goals)
I want to continue to lower my spending and continue saving

c. How you plan to get there
I am going to keep my grocery costs down with my menu plan and keep easy treats in the house so there isn't the temptation to order pizza while snuggled on the couch or to send the kids to Tim Hortons for treats.

Goals for the Month of January
1. No spend days: 0/10
2. Exercise days: 0/15

Key:
- no spend
- necessary spend
- unnecessary spend
- resisted an order out/run to TH for a treat day
- exercise

Running Totals:
groceries: $0.00/$650
household/misc necessary spending: $0.00/$350
unnecessary spending: $0.00
post #7 of 233
I am in!

a. Who you are~ SAHM to 7 kids & wife to one super hard working DH

b. Where you are going (your financial goals)~We are headed towards debt freedom one dollar at a time. Our ultimate goal is to be debt free, then sell our home and move to a different state and buy a house with cash. Then have chickens. (ok, so that part is my goal...)

c. How you plan to get there~ NOT SPENDING!!! Even if it is on sale, even if it is adorable and super cute and my kids can't live without it, even if it would A, B, or C... etc... One dollar here and there eventually adds up to lots of dollars lost on "bargains" instead of being put towards dreams. I am determined to be gazelle intense about this everyday in 2010!

=no spending outside of budget
= spent when I shouldn't have


01-
02-
03-
04-
05-
06-
07-
08-
09-
10-
11-
12-
13-
14-
15-
16-
17-
18-
19-
20-
21-
22-
23-
24-
25-
26-
27-
28-
29-
30-
post #8 of 233
i haven't participated in one of these in a while, but am going to try to stick it out this month.

i'm a SAHM/WAHM to 1 4yo dd, 2 dogs, 4 rabbits, and want desparately to sell the house we're in in MD and move, probably to KY, in the spring (if not sooner ).

we/i have quite a bit of debt that got almost all last fall while my husband was having an affair. i'm trying to pay that off as quickly as possible. i will have my DR BBS1 EF of $1000 by next week and then it's on.

i plan to budget for every expense, try to stay home more, stretch out the time between errands/groceries/library runs as much as possible, and only drive to the next county to visit ILs every other week instead of every week (a winner on several fronts ).

i also plan to bring in as much money as possible, via my website, selling on craigslist, selling aluminum and steel at the metal recycling place, selling books, anything else i can think of. nutshell.

i will probably track grocery spending because i'm also doing the grocery/pantry challenge to try to spend less money there, but will not track any other budgeted spending.
post #9 of 233
I'm afraid I can't totally do this, but I need to try!

a. Who you are: Kelli, P/T dentist, F/T mom to 2 with one on the way in 5 weeks!

b. Where you are going (your financial goals)
Big goal this year is for DH and I to buy a dental practice together that is close to the house. It would enable me to have a way shorter commute and spend more time at home.

c. How you plan to get there
Watch everything! Breastfeed, buy only food and toiletries new, everything else 2nd hand.

Good luck MDCers!! Keep that money in your wallet.
post #10 of 233
I am in. We want to simply track our spending and hen from there get a better sense of our budget. We are very fortunate to be making more money than we need to spend each month and we are working on building our savings and spending responsibly.

We are a family of 4, major urban dwellers, 2 freelancers with varied monthly incomes and wonky business expenses (lots of cabs for me, for example).

Our goal is really just to know what we are spending at this point and then set some goals from there. We have done this several times over the last few year, but our economics always shift and our family has also grown, so we are doing it again!

We have a number of fixed expenses like rent, phone bills, renters and car insurance, internet, dental insurance, health insurance, roth contribution, gas and electric, student loan repayment, netflix, etc. We also have business expenses because we both run our own businesses. And, on top of all that, we have expenses that vary like food, clothing, things for the kids (we homeschool, so some materials for that), household needs, etc. For now, we want to get a baseline on what these expenses total out to in a given month so we can budget from there.


= necessary spending
= could have done without


01-
02-
03-
04-
05-
06-
07-
08-
09-
10-
11-
12-
13-
14-
15-
16-
17-
18-
19-
20-
21-
22-
23-
24-
25-
26-
27-
28-
29-
30-
post #11 of 233
Hi! Mind if I join in?

a. Who you are: I am Hilary, mom to 3 boys and wife to a husband who is away 4 days a week.

b. Where you are going (your goals): Stop throwing $$ away on general stuff and meals out. I have never really done meal planning for a week and know I need to start so that when I go grocery shopping it is with a list I can stick with.

I also gained a huge amount of weight after a really good start to the year. I would like to drop at least 10lb this month by exercising and following my meal plans.

c. How you plan to get there : Not buy frivolitys and cook at home more.

Key:
- no spend
- necessary spend
- unnecessary spend
- ate out
- exercised


01- followed by Brusters icecream. total about $50. All thanks to dh!
02- (pet food)
03-
04- Groceries $120 $16 pizza
05-
06-
07-
08-
09-
10-
11-
12-
13-
14-
15-
16-
17-
18-
19-
20-
21-
22-
23-
24-
25-
26-
27-
28-
29-
30-
post #12 of 233
Thank you for starting the thread, Alison! I hope Prudence enjoys her break!

1. Who you are: Smithie, SAHM to 3 (5,3, and 7 mos), with a WAH dh, hoping to add to our family through older child adoption in 2010!

2. What you are going: We are going to have to do more with less in 2010. We're coming out of 2009 in the black thanks to cash gifts and selling a car. In 2010, there will be no cash gifts that I'm aware of and we will not sell a car. Simultaneously, we will have expenses associated with our adoptive placement (or so I hope!), a second child in preschool starting in September, plus classes for my homeschooled ds plus ballet for dd#1 plus - and this is a dream goal - Disneyland with some dear friends. I want a lot. I want it all.

3. How you plan to get there: I'd really love to TAKE CONTROL OF THIS FAMILY'S EATING HABITS. Plus, trimming down the craziness at holiday time and buying more kid clothes at the huge consignment sales that we have around here.

Recording the daily transactions makes me ill, so I'm just going to post the running total.
post #13 of 233
Thank you for starting this thread! I'm in again although I didn't finish out December.

a. Who you are - I'm Aileen, wife to hubby, stepmom to five kids, two youngest stay with us part time; I have one daughter and a 4 year old grandson, 9 month old granddaughter and another one on the way!!

b. Where you are going (your financial goals) - get medical bills paid off this year, cc paid off, car loan paid off hopefully this year, too. Also, build up the 3-6 month living expenses.

c. How you plan to get there - continue keeping grocery bill and non-essential spending down. Extra paycheck we have coming this month will go toward the medical bills.

necessary spend
no spend
unnecessary spend

January
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
post #14 of 233
This is my first time giving this a try, so wish me luck!

a. Who you areI'm Cari from Australia, mum to 3 little boys at home, and wife to a very cool dh Hoping to add my 16yo son to our home within this year sometime as well. I'm a sahm/homeschooling mum, dh is a contract/self employed courier.

b. Where you are going (your financial goals)
Our financial goals are to 1. plus the hemmorage of cash that we have 2. save for a deposit on a house 3. have the $ needed to get my son a visa and tickets to move here with us

c. How you plan to get there
I've set up a strict budget and we will take the 'petty cash' misc fund out in cash on payday, hubby will get a bit and I will keep the rest on me (but in the back of my wallet where it's not the first thing seen!) We plan to put at least 25% of dh's pay every fortnight in our savings acct.

Goals for the Month of January
1. 25days of no spending (not counting rent, groceries & required bills.. I mean misc spending)0/31
2. Unplanned spending 5 or fewer days: 0/5
3. Eat out as little as possible (we do friday fish & chips, so aiming for ONLY that: 0/31
4. 15 days with exercise in them: 0/15

Key:
- No Spend
- Planned Spend
- Unplanned Spend
- All meals eaten at home
- Exercise

Running Totals: Just keeping running totals on things that get out of hand for us... which is groceries, and misc unplanned spending! Dh has his van in to be serviced this coming weekend, which we hadn't budgeted for but is still required, so in here it goes.

Groceries: $0.00
Unplanned/Uneccessary spending: $0.00

Jan 1:
post #15 of 233
Love to join this group!

I will post the information tomorrow.
post #16 of 233
Can I jump in too? I'm new to these boards, but have done a bit of the no-spend challenge thing before, with limited success. This year I'm really working on doing a serious no spend in 2010.

a) Who I am: Jane, from Australia, live with DH, DS, two DDs, 2 dogs, 2 cats, 7 chooks and a bird.

b) Where are you going: We are working on paying off consumer debt (credit cards and line of credit) due to too many years with difficult financial situations. Finances are looking better this year, but I would like to work harder at erasing debt. On another note, I'm trying to declutter, stop hoarding and learn to live a simpler life with less.

c) How we plan to get there: There will be no non-essential spending at all. Kids and hubby will get pocket money, I will not be buying anything, no matter how cute/cheap/desperately wanted it is. I will be using my stash of craft materials, books and magazines to keep myself amused this year. We will be utilising free things as much as possible, and making do or going without if we need to.

Goals for January:
Pay bills (lots!), stick to budget for first two birthdays of the year, limit takeaway to one meal a month (maybe two for each birthday this month), pay any extra money off visa, stay away from op shops (thrift stores), buy only essential back to school supplies (school start end of Jan in Aust), amuse kids over summer holidays by using what we have and free resources round town.

Jane
post #17 of 233
a. Who you are - I'm lach! I have 2 kids and a DH and I live in Massachusetts.

b. Where you are going (your financial goals) - I'm trying to save up for a really cool travel opportunity with DH's step-mother, who is a reporter. Unfortunately, the trip will cost several thousand dollars. In order to justify spending that, I have to start saving! I was going to start doing this in December, but I knew I'd be doing too much for Christmas.

c. How you plan to get there - Um, by not spending anything? Which isn't realistic, I know, but that's my goal! Ideally I'd like to put a thousand dollars a month into savings between now and May. I already know that there is at least one, if not two major purchases that we've been living without for months (a dishwasher and a couch), and instead of us getting used to it, we're just getting more and more annoyed. The question is whether we'll break down in January and finally bite the bullet. I think DH may divorce me if I don't acquiesce to the dishwasher soon... and a divorce lawyer is probably even more expensive.

1. Aaaaand... I fail already. D'oh. DH's last day at home before he begins a new job so he begged to go to Chinese buffet. $26. Thank goodness both kids are still free!
2. DH is ruining this for me! Not that I'm really complaining, because he went and got tasty, tasty french pastries. They're sooo good. $18
3. $47 on gas, $39 at the supermarket, and DH took out $40 cash for lunch this week.
4.
5. Had to order diapers: $45 (we buy them by the case), and DH threw in a video camera for $200. Blerg. But it will be nice, as my old one died and we have no way to send videos to relations now. I also spent $45 on clothes and dinner, after returning $250 worth of Christmas gifts. Sooo... we'll call that even?
6. $80 to the house cleaner
7. $80 for toys for DS's birthday. I know, I know, but it was the Plan Toys parking garage and airport and a few other accessories that I really wanted to get, and an amazing deal. Also, DH and I went for dinner out because it was the first time in a year and a half we had a sitter, but I don't know how much that cost. I'll say $140. $50 for the sitter (not just for dinner, but for a school event we had to go to), and $90 for groceries.
8.

--This month went from bad to worse, spending wise. It was too embarrassing to list everything. I'm going to try again next month--

Running total:
Unnecessary expenses: $163
Necessary expenses: $311
Fixed expenses: $80

Key:
Unnecessary expenses
Necessary expenses (groceries, gas... things I do need, but could probably work on cutting back on)
Fixed expenses (bills and various loan payments)
Spent NOTHING!!!
post #18 of 233
1 - + - $10 on garbage tags
2 - + - food at the Russian food stand at the mall, a kitchen calendar, medicine, postage, groceries for supper, and a snack at the Bulk Barn
3 - +
4 - +
5 - +
6 - - bad bad bad - gave into cravings in a HUGE way
7 - + +
8 - +
9 -


Key:
- no spend
- necessary spend
- unnecessary spend
- resisted an order out/run to TH for a treat all day
- exercise

Running Totals:
no spend days: 2/10
groceries: $15.32/$650
household/misc necessary spending: $148.45/$350
unnecessary spending: $75.21
post #19 of 233
a. Who you are ~ Kristina, Mama to 3. DH will be retiring from Active Duty Air Force in September.

b. Where you are going (your financial goals) ~ With DH's impending retirement, my goal is to save as much as possible through September. My goal is to save $1000/month.

c. How you plan to get there ~ Since we have no debt other than our mortgage, we can definitely save more by reining in our spending. I am sitting down today and making a written budget (a la Dave Ramsey) and sticking to it. Every month.
post #20 of 233
1. Who you are: A mother to one child, age 8. Am divorced, so my financial goals are solo.

2. Where you are going (your financial goals): I do have quite a bit of debt. But for the immediate future, I have the goal of paying off one credit card before summer, and of building up more savings. Also, realistically, it's important for me (along with my son) to have some travel experirences each year (plus it broadens my horizons as a freelance writer) so I want to put money aside to do that. I'll re-evaluate for the second half of the year and set new goals then.

3. How you plan to get there: I don't spent a lot of money to begin with, but will continue my increasingly "thrifty" ways... buying more second-hand, etc. I love cute stuff but am trying to be more crafty. The main thing is, I'm starting to bring in more writing work, and have a lot of specific goals with that this year. Given the nature of freelance work, it's hard to project amounts, but obviously the more work I get, the better off we're going to be! I have some other ideas, but this is a good start! Good luck to everybody!
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Frugality & Finances
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Natural Living › The Mindful Home › Frugality & Finances › ~January No-Spend Challenge~ Let's start 2010 out with a bang! Everyone is welcome to join at any time :)