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January No Spend Challenge~ Ringing in the New Year with $$ in our Pockets!!! - Page 5

post #81 of 485
Originally Posted by Crunchy*VT*Mom View Post
I LOVE stories like this.  Because everytime I get the urge to "organize" I have to catch myself because so often what I really want to do is go to Staples and spend money.  It is nice to hear that happens to other people too.  Glad you caught yourself and found a free solution at home.  Good work, Melissel!


You are so right! I yearn for an organized home, and that so often seems to mean that I get carte blanche to spend money because being organized is important. And it is, but throwing more money at it is not the way to do it. Thanks orngbiggrin.gif


Originally Posted by LoveOurBabies View Post


Oh mama, I'm very proud of you too!!! This is awesome. It's so hard to tell yourself 'You don't need that' when you've told yourself the opposite for so long. I did that the other day and was immensely proud of my efforts too. Since then, it's become easier to just say no. Good on you for prettying up those manila folders and keeping your hard earned cash in your pocket!




Thank you, but oh my goodness, I think you did better than I did! I think it's easier to say no to bringing something in than it is to actually go out bring stuff back to the stores. And then to come right home and apply that money to your credit card? Really well done thumbsup.gif


I forgot how helpful these threads can be!

post #82 of 485
Originally Posted by meandk0610 View Post

a. Who you are:  sarah, mom to dd(7). we homeschool and i work PT as director for a local after school child care program where i can take my daughter. we're homesteading too!

b. Where you are going (your financial goals) and:  working on trying to stay current. i don't get paid when school is out so i'll have to keep the budget super tight due to time off for christmas/new year's break. it's already hand-to-mouth pretty much here so i'm not sure what's going to be able to bend.

c. How you plan to get there:  i already track everything. i have started rack drying as much as possible. i'm trying to do a load a day so that i don't get buried and too tempted to use the dryer. i'm drying things in the living room to help with humidity in the house (plus the fireplace is in the LR). the heat is down to 64 and i've been using the fireplace like crazy while we've been off work during break. i had several days where i only heard the house heater on about 3 times during the day because the fireplace had it so warm. i guess i may end up paying for it in wood if i can't find a way to find more free. we have a heater in the bedroom (i share with dd) that we'll put on 68 when we got to bed i tried putting this on 67 but i'm just too cold (i have fibromyalgia and adrenal fatigue). i started bringing a hot water bottle to bed also. ooh, i also cancelled netfli this month; we don't have any other tv except dvds.



no spend-thumb.gif     

budgeted spend-winky.gif       

over budget or not budgeted-greensad.gif   

hung clothes on line- hang.gif


1/1: thumb.gif  hang.gif

1/2: thumb.gif  hang.gif




no spend-thumb.gif     

budgeted spend-winky.gif       

over budget or not budgeted-greensad.gif   

hung clothes on line- hang.gif

used the fireplace at least part of the day treehugger.gif


1/1: thumb.gif  hang.gif

1/2: thumb.gif  hang.gif

1/3: thumb.gif  hang.gif treehugger.gif



@LoveOurBabies - you put the money straight to the credit card?! i would've been so afraid to do that straight away! congrats to both of you on your strength!

post #83 of 485
Originally Posted by melissel View Post


What?! I would not be happy about that greensad.gif


Oh I'm not. Now they say I'm considered to have a medical condition. 

post #84 of 485


No Spend/Paying Bills thumb.gif

Budgeted Spend eyesroll.gif

Unbudgeted Spend irked.gif

Did Something Frugal at Home treehugger.gif


**6/25 No Spend/Budgeted Spend Days**

**$180/$180 Grocery/Med Budget**



December 28: thumb.gif Paid rent, electric, water, adt, credit card and van payment for $1,232. But our van payment is now current so we're current on all bills! 

December 29: thumb.gif We'll be spending the day with the inlaws. 

December 30: thumb.gif Budgeted spend on pizza, we got home from out of town at dinner time and I needed to buy groceries! We also got some snacks for the road but my dad had given us "coke money" for the trip (I had gone to the store for him and he told me to keep the change).

December 31: thumb.gifirked.gif Ah groceries. I spent $150 almost even on food, herbs, meds and wipies. My DH will be going to the other store here in a bit to get our milk and produce. My unbudgeted spend was a pair of sweat pants on sale for the little one who didn't have any (and it's cold enough he needs warm pants around the house). They were $4. I also got 3 packs of toss and go sippy cups for $6.

January 1: thumb.gif Well I was going to send DH to the post office but it's closed, so no spend!

January 2: irked.gif Found out that when my dentist talked me into a "deep clean" it turned me into a periodontal patient and my insurance doesn't cover all periodontal cleanings so I have to go every 3 months to be tortured and can't stop being a periodontal patient until I "get better". Sigh. $30 copay for that today. $9 for stamps. $22 for paper kitchen items (plates/bowls/etc) and tissues because I'm trying to get over the flu and can't keep up with the house. Sigh.

January 3: thumb.gif treehugger.gif I'm still getting over the flu and now DH has gastroenteritis (Lord help us) so another day inside until we have speech therapy at 1:30. We only have $50 left and I'm not touching it! Next pay period will be more challenging because I'll have more $$ available which makes it harder not to spend it! For my frugal thing done at home I made a quadruple batch of steel cut oats for breakfast and divided it into qt sized jars for quick breakfasts later this week. :)

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post #85 of 485

I'm in for January. I need some accountability since there is NO wiggle room in our budget this month and we've lost DH's extra part-time income (hence the NO wiggle room).


a. Who you are

Mother of two, on maternity leave with a hubby in school (just entering a co-op workterm this semester, but we are saving every cent he makes, which means our household budget is going to be tight)

b. Where you are going (your financial goals)

We are on DR's BS3 (debt-free, saving towards building a 3-6 month emergency fund....while also saving for a new roof in the spring, a second clunker of a vehicle for when I go back to work and next year's tuition). This month's goals: keep the budget in the black, even when missing a chunk of income.

c. How you plan to get there

Putting our heads down and soldiering on. We've been working on our finances for almost 4 years and BS3 is taking f.o.r.e.v.e.r.

We've already had a few un-planned expenses, let's hope this is it!!

1: -

2: $40, replacing a broken lock and drill bits

3: $60, safety boots for work-term





post #86 of 485
Originally Posted by willfulmama View Post
kathirynne - Do you have any tips for going to the grocery store just once a month? It came up on another forum I'm a part of and it's intriguing me. I guess my concern is that when we got home from the store, we'd feel food-rich and eat like maniacs.. only to have little left for the end of the month. What about fruits and veggies?


I hosted a thread on meal-planning on this site a few years ago.  It had the nitty-gritty of how I shop for groceries.  I'll go hunt for it and post a link.


As far as veggies and fruits go, I usually buy seasonal produce, and things that have a longer life (in the winter this means citrus and apples, cabbage, hard squash and carrots, for instance).  After the fresh is used up, I switch to frozen, either bought from the supermarket or home frozen from my garden or the Farmers' Market in the summertime.


I also use things like tinned pumpkin puree in the winter, to add lots of vitamins to our menu without having to worry about spoilage.


I find that we don't "feel food-rich and eat like maniacs" when I have a meal plan.  Without a meal plan, though, all bets are off, so I know exactly what you mean about that.

Edited by kathirynne - 1/3/13 at 11:18am
post #87 of 485
Originally Posted by eirual View Post


c. How you plan to get there

Putting our heads down and soldiering on. We've been working on our finances for almost 4 years and BS3 is taking f.o.r.e.v.e.r.


We are right there with you on this. We keep getting to four months' EF (I want six) and then DH hits a down phase (he's in sales) and we have to start dipping into that money and next thing I know we're down to one month. So frustrating!

post #88 of 485
Originally Posted by kathirynne View Post


I hosted a thread on meal-planning on this site a few years ago.  It had the nitty-gritty of how I shop for groceries.  I'll go hunt for it and post a link.


I remember that thread! Wasn't it a series of threads, even? That was awesome.

post #89 of 485

Here is the link to my meal planning thread.




I'd be happy to host a 2013 version, if there's any interest.

post #90 of 485

Originally Posted by wildmonkeys View Post


smile.gif      Did something specific to save money

thumb.gif    No spend

Peace.gif  Made a conscious decision to spend


irked.gif      Spent on budgeted/necessary item
dizzy.gif   Blew it


1/2 irked.gif  $10 prescription for ds2  smile.gif My mom doesn't like to cook with hambone so she gave me her's from Christmas dinner.  Will combine with some cheap pantry staples to make lentil soup and feed the whole family for a couple of dollars tonight. I also turned down the thermostat when the kids left for school.  We spent New Year's with friends whose oldest is about to start college and I am VERY motivated to find some extra money to set aside for college savings each month.

1/3 irked.gif dizzy.gifOkay, I am off to a bad start in 2013...today I had to spend a lot on medical issues (ds2 has some chronic health conditions and today they cost us over $100) I also took the car for an oil change to check my mysterious light and after paying for the oil change they recommended I take it to a "full service mechanic to identify the problem"....sounds BAD.  I also bought two kitchen chairs... though I don't feel as bad about this as I probably should Sheepish.gif We have had the same 4 chairs the entire 16 1/2 years we have been married - then we were up to 5 people but they only sell these chair in pairs so I had a mismatched chair I bought for $5 for the last 4 years.  Well ds1 broke one of the chairs about a month ago and I pulled in another mismatched chair because the sets were too expensive, but I flagged it for sales and they were 50% off today.  So even though I spent $60 - for the first time in 4 years my kitchen table will match. That being said - I am feeling pretty down about my lousy start...



Micah_Mae - I am so sorry about your dental woes.  I had some "preventative" dental work done last fall that caused me so many problems and was painful and so expensive. I am still angry when I think about it.


Good job Melissa - that is the kind of no spend that is impressive.  It is one thing to not go, but another to have a cart full of stuff you are ready to use and put it back and find a creative solution. WELL DONE! 

post #91 of 485

January Spending. 

NO SPEND - joy.gif

Budgeted Spending - thumb.gif

Unquieted Spending - eyesroll.gif



Dec 29 - thumb.gif

Dec 30- joy.gif

Dec 31 - thumb.gif

Jan 1- eyesroll.gif   

Jan 2 - thumb.gif  


Yesterday I did a HUGE trip to Costco. Got toilet paper on sale, enough for two months!  Stocked up on a lit of things I've always wanted to stock up on, like rice, and olive oil (we are a dairy free home, we use a TON of olive oil). Spent more than I wanted to as I bought some bulk snack items, but we are really set of the month! I'm very happy with my choices. Not sure about my run to the convience store last night though. spend $1 on a needed item and $5 on ice cream for DH. I felt bad that he didn't like the kind I got at the store, so I grabbed a little ben and jerrys for him for the rest of the week since ice cream was the only treat I bought this week.... Since its that or have him run out to the ice cream parlor I'll call it budgeted... whistling.gif  Oh and filled up my gas tank for $65 at costco!! Thats amazing! If I keep driving to a minimum I will come out WAY under budget on gas this month! 



Even though I don't have time to reply to a lit of individual posts I gotta say, you guys are really inspiring!!! Today will surely be no spend or just paying bills. :) 

post #92 of 485

Tonight is poker night, so DH will be spending money.  But I only track myself, not him.  wink1.gif


I'm not spending.



Originally Posted by Crunchy*VT*Mom View Post

My Goal = 15 thumb.gif No-Spend days


My progress = 2 No-spend day so far


01..  $258 lessons for the kids

02..  thumb.gif

03..  thumb.gif


















post #93 of 485


jammin.gifcarrot.gif= Excellent

oops.gif / shrug.gif = Not so good

dizzy.gif / surrender.gif= Very, very bad


12.31  carrot.gif  Errand day.  Groceries/ eat out= $55/ $18/ $28  oops.gif  Forgot to record library fines--  22 DOLLARS!

1.1  jammin.gif  No spend.  Staying home.  Nothing's open.  But I'm taking it anyway.

1.2  carrot.gif Happy Veggie for now, because we kept snack and treat purchases to a minimum.  Azure Standard order.  Co-op stop for a handful of items.  $211 basic groceries, $10.50 treats.  Total so far: $266 (basics)/$18 (groceries for homemade snacks and treats)/ $38.50 (snacks and treats).

1.3  shrug.gif  Planned a Burgerville stop for dd2 and I for our long drive to the dermatologists.  I could have made it home, thought it would be fun since dd2 likes the food there.  She ate 5 fries and an apple juice.  I ate the rest of the fries and a cheddar cheese pepper-bacon burger with chipotle mayonnaise. Sigh.....  so very good...... except I could have packed snacks and a lunch for me.  This was supposed to be a treat for her, not me.  Somehow, though, I'm not feeling that guilty.  I even feel a bit cocky because I did not buy the mocha perk milkshake.  Anyhow, $10 to add to our snacks-and-treats tally, now at $48.50.


Note:  Someone bravely added their library fines, so I did as well, on 12/31.  Hope it makes everyone feel better!  And actually, it is about half of what I paid about 6 months ago.  bag.gif


$322.50/$920 for 5 weeks ending Sunday, 2.3.

post #94 of 485
Thread Starter 


thumb.gif  No Spend/ Budgeted Spending

irked.gif  Unbudgeted/ Unnecessary Spending

knit.gif  Crafted for at least 30 minutres



1.  irked.gif  Not exactly how I wanted to start the year/ month, but all well.  Another $200 spent at Home Depot for more shelving for my kids' rooms, $40 spent at the grocery store while we continue to wrap our head around the food allergies.

2.  thumb.gif

3.  thumb.gif


2/ 20 No Spend Days

0/ 20 Crafting Days

post #95 of 485

January 1: thumb.gif and irked.gif $14 on gas; I decided to use up the change in my house to buy gas for the next two days thumb.gif

$92.05 on groceries and personal items (lotion, diapers). I let my oldest throw me off track and I bought two items that weren't on the list. Not a big deal, but I really wanted to stay at around $85. 

January 2: love.gif I only brought lunch to work even though I worked a 12 hour day.  I'm getting off of work now; I'm going to zoom home as fast as I (legally) can so I won't be tempted to make a food detour...

January 3: love.gif





post #96 of 485

Thanks CrunchyVTMom!

post #97 of 485

Hi! I have finally decided to join.


a. Who you are- I am BethAnne- mom to two boys.

b. Where you are going (your financial goals)- My goal is to be debt-free eventually (sooner rather than later)

c. How you plan to get there- one way is not by "frittering" money away. I am not a shopper but I can be enticed by little things that are only $5 or $3, etc. I also have to just deal with our debts and keep going.

orngbiggrin.gif- no spend

smile.gif- budgeted/purposeful spend

irked.gif- not planned spending


I am hoping to do some knitting/crocheting/sewing/crafting projects. I will do it by days (cause I am a newbie). 0/20 days


Jan 01- orngbiggrin.gif

Jan 02- smile.gif Went to Walmart and purchased the Transformers for the top of the little guys birthday cake. In years past I would have ordered the cake from the store but I decided to decorate it myself with the two toys on top. I also had to purchase mattress protectors which were $10 cheaper each than I was expecting.

Jan 03- orngbiggrin.gif

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post #98 of 485

January Spending. 

NO SPEND - joy.gif

Budgeted Spending - thumb.gif

Unquieted Spending - eyesroll.gif



Dec 29 - thumb.gif

Dec 30- joy.gif

Dec 31 - thumb.gif

Jan 1- eyesroll.gif   

Jan 2 - thumb.gif

Jan 3 - thumb.gif


Today we ate entirely at home! Yay! I got a lot done, including hanging up some hooks that I've needed drywall mounts for. Took a walk to our local hardware store and grabbed them for 15 cents! Paid the mortgage on our home we are renting out and about 1/3 of Credit Card balance. DH ran it up after x-mas... whatever is left at the end of the month will go to the Credit Card. Need to send out the check for our main mortgage tomorrow. Phone bill is already paid for the month, just the utilities and netflix left this month already. (and of course food food food). 

post #99 of 485

Friday 4th January

No spend day smile.gif orngbiggrin.gif smile.gif


$111.04 remaining for groceries this week.


What I did today to save money:

Ate out of our fridge, freezer and pantry and re-purposed some leftover fish to make a new dish.


Purged some items and set aside to sell. Fingers crossed it should bring in some $ in a few weeks.


A week ago I was going to part with a $30 Playdoh toy (and re-purchase it later down the track) because it had rusty screws in it. Call me crazy, but I have a thing with rusty screws. Anyway, today I decided not to part with it after all.. I'm now going to pull it apart, throw away the rusty screws, give it a good scrub and have DH put some new SS screws in it. It was my fault, I shouldn't have put in the dishwasher for a clean. Hand wash only from now on!


We ran out of ice blocks and ice cream and I decided to not replenish our stock for the hot days ahead (yes, I'm becoming a real scrooge)! Instead we agreed that icy and chilled water would be our cool down drinks. Today was scorching hot and it worked well (no one felt they were missing out), so I'm going to stick with it this summer. I'll be bringing ice cream home as a treat only.. I want to remove grabbing an ice block/ice cream out of the freezer as the default setting for a hot day.

post #100 of 485

My daughter needs a black dress for a music recital.  I had a black dress in my check out cart from Land's End.  Not an expensive purchase, but I'm wondering if I couldn't find a black dress at a children's consignment store for less.  Hmmmm....  She'll only wear it one time. 


Going shopping is usually dangerous for me, but I may try it this one time.  With a list.  And a purpose.

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