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~October No Spend Challenge~ The economy declines, MDC familes SAVE!!!!!! - Page 2

post #21 of 481
Greetings Everyone

I am on board. Our debt is starting to scare me, and I really need to get on top of this. I am a SAHM Homeschooling Mother of 4, and I have let my darn plastic card pay for way to much.

my goals are simple really.

1) No spending on anything other then NEEDS at the grocery store for 31 days
2) No eating out
3) Stay Home and be content with what we have
4) report here everyday on things spent if I do spend anything.
5) redirect my hubbies buying

I need to do this , we need to pay this down, and we need to get our ducks in a row.

post #22 of 481
Alright! I am in this month:-)
I'm Jen, and I am joining this thread because dh and I talked last night and we have decided to turn our finances around. So, for six months we are going to try to spend as little money as possible. I am totally stressed though, that is is 6 months starting now, because we have both our daughters birthdays and Christmas and our anniversary during it! But, these threads will help me out:-)
Other than dd2's birthday and one dinner out for dh and I for our anniversary this month, I am not spending ANYTHING (except a small amt. for food) I need help! I'll be here for accountability and inspiration from you other frugal mamas:-)
So, spending will be on dd2 birthday-- $200 includes pressies and party, anniversary dinner $80, food-- $100 every week (that includes diapers, etc. )
Let's go!
post #23 of 481

I'm in!

Hi, I'm coccinelle, mom to a 3.5 yr old dd. I've been reading the September thread for inspiration and have finally delurked so I could join in this month!

I'm here because I want to build our emergency savings, pay down our auto loan principal, and get our budget under control. DH has a new job and we've just moved to an area with a higher cost of living. We're still figuring out what our paychecks will be after all deductions and what our outflow is each month--I really need to get a handle on our numbers!

My main goal for October:
-record all spending. DH is not participating in no-spend month, but I think I've convinced him to record spending also to give us a complete picture.

Additional goals:
-15 no-spend days
-10 no-driving outside of commute days
-Make 1 extra car payment toward principal
-500 toward emergency savings
-100 toward 2008 Roth savings

Planned expenses:
-I've just reentered the workforce after 3 yrs and would like appropriate autumn weather clothes. This is my month to discover the Goodwill and thrifts of our new hometown! Budget: $50
-duvet and cover for DD's bed, autumn/winter clothes. Budget: $40
-slippers for my mom
-perhaps carseat: must check height limit and remeasure DD, think she will soon outgrow Roundabout
-pair of canvas shoes to make myself Obama shoes!

Game plan:
-Document my spending here daily. Prepare a spreadsheet for my husband to enter data
-Do grocery shopping on my 2 shorter work days
-Plan ahead: meals so I don't end up wasting food, packing lunch and drink so I don't run into a store because we're thirsty, etc.
-When facing temptation, ask myself what item will contribute to our lives; is it worth more to us than our savings? If it is, then could I hold off a week? a day?

I'm ready!!
post #24 of 481
I'm in. I was trying to be in last month and failed. Not too miserably, but I did. We need to save because we have an annual Jack o'Lantern party.

But I think I've come up with an idea to do it pretty cheaply - we're going to have a potato bar and soup and ask people to bring their own pumpkins this year. And I bought a ton of stuff last year in November at Target for just a few dollars - decorations, napkins, bowls, etc.

Anyway, I digress. I'm in, and hope to do great! Good luck everyone!
post #25 of 481
I am in for October.

Having read the forums here for a few months, I am totally inspired. I am newly coupled : since the begining of the year, but we have just taken a bigger step in sharing our lives. Having been a single parent to two beautiful boys for four years, last month I moved house so that my partner, myself and the children could grow and share and explore life together.

So we are joining money for rent, bills, gas, water, food etc - all the 'household' payments. We each pay half. I am used to paying it all, some it is going to mean that I will be able to save a little too. But, I lose some tax benefits. It actually just about balances.

I dont have any credit cards (a decision that I made a long time ago) but I do have a overdraft facility of £2500 that I pretty much use every month until payday. I tend to stay around about the -£800 mark after my deposits.

I already am a Compacting Mama since April 2007 but I am starting to find that I am using thrift in a similiar way to new - it is still to satisfy an urge/need to buy 'something'! I go browsing in the second hand shops and all of a sudden I really NEED a new pair of curtains/trousers/top/book/whatever...

So, my goal is to reach £0 in my bank balance by payday on 20 December 2008. So when my salary deposits, I am PLUS for the first time in 3 years. In order to do this, here is my plan -

1. NO unnecessary car trips.

I will do the grocery shopping on the way home from work in the week, not on weekends. Or, even better, we may decide to order online.

2. Record my planned spend.

My partner and I are in this together! : He is making a spreadsheet so we can work on this as a couple. And he is doing me a separate ss so I can do my personal finances too.

I have a little box for receipts and I will give myself 10 mins at the end of every day to log it in my ss and record it here.


I 'need' about 3 items for the winter - a pair of boots (they are not under the Compact so I will buy them new), a Good Black Poloneck Jumper and a pair of trousers.

4. Make my lunch for work.

I dont give myself enough time in the mornings to make lunch. My partner makes his lunch (he leaves MUCH earlier than me, so if he can do it, so can I!) and so we have the supplies here. If I dont, I spend between £3 and £4 on lunch 4 days a week = £80 per month! eeeek.

5. Parking.

If I have to park for work, I tend to park in the nearest park, but it costs more. So - leave 10 minutes earlier, park for free on the outskirts and WALK. At £3 per day, it will all add up.

That is it for this month. I dont want to set myself up too harshly for the first month - I already buy organic fruit/veg/pulses (partner and I are vegetarian) and organic meat for the children. BUT we make it go a long way. I used to meal plan and I slacked for the last few months with moving house etc, but I will add this back in and SHOP FROM THE LIST .

Wow, this feels good to be accountable to myself.
post #26 of 481
Back in the saddle after a pretty crummy financial end to September - FIDO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :

1. My name is Kim; our family includes DH, DD (12/03) + DS (9/06). I run my own PR/consulting businesses from home and also earn $ freelance writing. DH works FT + is in nursing school FT, + kiddos are always with one of us, so life is pretty busy in every moment.

2. Get the budget back in the black and STICK TO IT. Refocus and commit to attacking the debt snowball.

3. Game plan:
* INCREASE income - business goals: Freelance writing - 30 queries in 30 days (taking 10/31 to celebrate); work/life balance consulting - confirm (4) new workshops; PR - bring on (1) new client; coaching - bring on (1) new client
* SELL rental house - P&S signed; scheduled to close by 10/31
* Sell/donate unneeded items
* Pack snacks + water whenever we go out
* No more late library materials!
* ORGANIZE! Majority of overbudget/frivolous spending can be prevented with improved organization.
* Exercise: feeling good = decreased emotional spending

* Less than $50 in frivolous spending: month to date $0
* At least 25 days (no spend or spending w/in budget): 0/31
* Pack snacks/water for outings: 0/31
* NO library fines: month to date $0
* Stay within grocery/eating out budget: $0/$500
* ORGANIZE/declutter (lack of organization = spending): 0/25
* Exercise (feeling good = decreased emotional spending): 0/25
* Meal plan created: 0/4 weeks
* Sell rental house by 10/31...

Past Progress:
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; $769.02 groceries/eating out, 27 Organize/Declutter days, 21 Exercise days[/QUOTE]
Sept. '08: Have not tallied yet...it wasn't pretty.
post #27 of 481
Yay! Oct. 1---a new month and a new beginning for dh and I's financial life! Thanks for all the inspiration, and here's to accountability! I'm actually *excited* to not spend any money!
post #28 of 481
I'm in. I spent much less in September than in August, but still need to improve a lot!!

Here is my key...
= No spend
= Budgeted or necessary spending
= Un-Budgeted spending
= No drive days
= Mindful spending/purchase

12 No Spend Days
5 Eating Out Days
6 No Drive Days
$500 Groceries
$175 Gas
$200 Costco
$200 other consumables, stocking up on sale items to build a 'stash'
Total Un-Budgeted spending $80
post #29 of 481

Okay this is gonna be hard but count me in!

I am Holly (also from VT). We recently paid off our car YES! so now it's on to trying to pay off the credit card! We have already cut extra expenses from our budget (we have no cable, i don't have a cell phone, etc.). However, I want to see our credit card get paid off as fast as possible. It is actually our goal to have it all paid off before TTC number 2 (in 2010). So anyway. I'm here because i REALLY need help in giving up my daily mocha lattes. I'm spending 6-8 dollars a day on them (depending where i go). They are just so yummy and scrumptious! Also since i'm breastfeeding I get huge cravings for them...sigh.

So that is the biggest reason why i'm here, i want you ladies to YELL AT ME if i mention wanting a latte so i won't go buy one! Also, i want to give up unneccary spending as well. We tend to eat out ALL THE TIME. Like at least one meal a day, plus snacks, etc.

so here i am, wanting to take ds down to the little local, organic, wonderful coffee shop down the street from me, where there are toys for him to play with and a comfy couch for me to sit and drink in the mocha latte yumminess....HELP!
post #30 of 481
Hey all
I started yesterday, cuz, well I was ready......and I need this....

No spending yesterday at all....and no driving. I told my hubby what I was trying to do and he was on board. He wants to do it too! So were going to do this together , so that we can try and get our budget back in blanace and pay off some credit card debt.

Technically though, this is Day one.
Its Day one for alot of things for me...whew..october the month of change.

Heres to another day no spending!
good luck everyone!!

post #31 of 481
I'm in! September was the best I've ever done, so I am psyched to see if I can do better in October. I'm trying to beat 14 no-spend days and $301 flexible spending.
post #32 of 481
I'm ready! I'm ready! I'm ready!

......chanting a la Spongebob

Car insurance premium and taxes coming up--will not come out of savings!!!

Christmas will not go on credit cards---even if I pay it off Dec. 26!

Stay home and keep my money in my pocket!
post #33 of 481

im in!

I've watched this thread occasionally and sort of tried to implement it for a few days and then I get distracted...

I'm Chelsea, mother to Grace who is 14 months. I work full time at Whole Foods Market, which is both great (yay discount on food!) but also bad (its a half hour drive each way). I'm sort of single, sort of trying to work it out with her dad....which means, I have my own apartment that I moved into in August when I moved out of our old apartment (he still lives there), I have his help financially but it drives me nuts not being able to make it by myself, and I'd really like to make some changes because living consciously is so important to me and I haven't been doing that as well as I'd like to. I'm here for accountability, and for a kick in the butt to finally do something that will have long term results.

So! Happy October! Money is tight, I have credit cards that I want to pay off, school bills, I just got an IKEA card last night so I could have some furniture....eep.

I do have to go out today to get diapers, wipes, an extension cord, groceries...so today most likely be no-spend for me, but my goals are to have more no-spending days because right now, my way of unwinding (and I seriously convince myself that I need it) is to go to Target, or where ever, on my way home from work. I'd also like to make good purchases - used whenever possible and absolutely justifying what I bring home and consume.

I would really like to find some meal ideas, things I can make that are easy and nutritious (aka veggies please!) for myself and my daughter, things I can freeze....right now, my easy meal is pancakes...mixed with a jar of baby food. I make a ton of them and then freeze them so I can pull a few out when I'm too tired to cook dinner. My cooking skills are kind of limited, and more often than not I'm too exhausted at the end of the day to actually make anything more than peanut butter and jelly, but obviously my daughter can't eat that, so meal ideas would be appreciated!

Another thing that gets me is coffee....I usually get 79 cent coffees at work, but on my days off or on days that I work late, I like to go to Starbucks. I try and only get drip coffee because its cheaper, but um....pumpkin spice....oh my goodness.

AND. I have an etsy shop, and I want to boost my sales and list EVERYTHING I have stashed away in my closet waiting to be photographed and posted. My goal is to do that by the end of this month, so that I can have a little extra income. I also want to get rid of my daughter's old clothes...I was hoping I could get a little money for them, but ebay intimidates me and I've already tried selling them to OPAC...the clothes are great and clean, but I think OPAC hates me.

Hmm...anything else? *breathe*
post #34 of 481
Ok, after a few months off, I'm back for another month!

1. Please introduce yourself and tell us why you have decided to spend nothing (or spend significantly less) for the Month of October.

I'm Jamey, 27 years old, wife to M. We're TTC our first starting March 09. We need to get our spending under control, pay down our debts (my scary student loans), and increase our very meager savings. We've just moved into an new house, and I'm excited about having a frugal, peaceful household!

2. No spending is hard work. You need a plan. Please tell us your game plan -- how do you plan to approach no spending for a month?

Stay within the amounts I budgeted the last time I did a no-spend month (July), and put a minimum of £250 in savings NO MATTER WHAT. Also, make a plan for holiday spending so that it doesn't all come down on us come January.

3. Be specific! What are your goals? How many no spend days is right for you? Do you have a savings goal? Debt repayment goal?

My goals are no more than 1 time per week eating out (any meal), no coffee by myself, finish making holiday gifts for at least 3 family members, and budget for my spending when I go on holiday later this month!
post #35 of 481
Hello! My name is Amanda, and I promise to do better this month!

lol, so I started the challenge in September, but didn't finish. I got very discouraged that at the beginning of the month I had a lot of days that I spent a lot of money ($140 for Opera tickets, bought all of ds' winter clothes... oh dear it goes on and on), and didn't want to look at the tally anymore However, it did give me a shove to be more accountable, and me and my lover (tehe) spent very little money! On top of spending less, I got more mat leave/baby bonus than I was expecting so we ended up banking almost $1,500! I also put $4,000 towards my student loans, so will save money by not paying interest on that! I only have $2,500 to go before I am completely student debt free, and can start saving for - school lol. The one expenditure that I am truly upset about is eating out - $116. We could have gone to a couple really nice meals for that much, but instead it was piddled away on coffee, dh's lunch because he didn't bring it, my lunch because I forgot to eat before leaving the house, fast food during long road trips, and lots of ice cream - our guilty pleasure during long walks together.

This month, I will be more accountable. I will (try to) post on here everyday that I am at home, in addition to keeping track of our expenditures on our budget - every last cent that leaves our hands will be accounted for. I started buying Christmas gifts last month, and have a list of inexpensive ideas. I will continue to spend 50/month on that. Our grocery budget is 400/month. Gas and auto upkeep is 150/month.

So, here it goes:


0/400: Groceries
0/50: Gifts
0/150: Gas
post #36 of 481
1. Please introduce yourself and tell us why you have decided to spend nothing (or spend significantly less) for the Month of October.

My name is Sara. I am a 26 year old SAHM to 2 little boys. We are expecting our third son in January. I'm jumping in because I want to make sure that we do not go over our budget. We are at a point that we need to spend some money, particuarly on decorating our house, but I want to do this as wisely as I can and to stay within our budget.

2. No spending is hard work. You need a plan. Please tell us your game plan -- how do you plan to approach no spending for a month?

My husband and I have a budget and we track every penny that we spend. But we've been a little lazy and we often do this 1-2 months late, so we end up loosing track of a few categories of spending. The one I want to focus on this month is spending on kids, especially as we prepare our home for baby Zephan.

3. Be specific! What are your goals? How many no spend days is right for you? Do you have a savings goal? Debt repayment goal?

I'm on bed rest and I cannot go shopping, so in general this makes it easy to have lots of no spend days!

My specific goal for this month is to decorate our baby's nursery without spending more than $200. This will include paint, bedding and art.
post #37 of 481
I am in!

I am Aurora. I am a home schooling mama to 4 beautiful children ages 10-2. I am a SAHM and I am in school part time (I am taking one internet class). Dh works full time out of the home.

Goals for this month:

1. This month I am going to work on documenting our spending so I know where the money goes.

2. Cancel the cable.

3. Look into canceling the cell phones (I think we are locked into a plan and there are fees ($500) for canceling early).

4. Cook more from scratch. We spend an obscene amount on groceries.

5. Cut eating out/delivery to 5 times this month.

6. 2 of our children have birthdays this month and some warm clothes are needed. I will buy from thrift stores/sales.
post #38 of 481


0/20 No Spend Days
0/10 Let the Car Rest Days :

I spent big bucks at the grocery store today, but I only count unnecessary spending on this thread, so I get a no-spend since there was only FOOD in my cart.

And I double checked on the way through the register line to keep myself accountable. Yep, just food.

Not very yummy food either -- I just read Tosca Reno's book about Eating Clean and I'm trying to buy no refined suger. Oooooh that is hard for me.

I also committed to buying a gas grill from a good friend, but I won't count that as a spend until the money actually leaves my pocket.

So yahoo...off to a good start.

September was an abyssmal month for my budget -- here's to a better October!
post #39 of 481
Pru, how in the heck do you spend $47 on panties??

(Please smack me if that is a rude question and not something you want to discuss.)

You ask this of a woman who spent $130 on tank tops and $236 on running shoes last month?

I was on a TEAR...it is actually scary how much I spent on clothing last month. (over $750)

$47 was for nine pairs of panties, so they were approximately $5 each. We are talking JCPenney's here, so not silk or anything. It just added up.

But this is ALL in the past.

From now on, I am a hard-core-money-savin' frugalista.
post #40 of 481
Oh...and for the record...it would have felt MUCH better to send that $750 off to the credit card.

No clothing can make up for that.

Woulda, coulda, shoulda. Lesson learned.
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