~ October No-Spend Challenge ~ The treat is having money in the bank. The trick is keeping it there. - Mothering Forums

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Old 09-28-2010, 08:34 PM - Thread Starter
 
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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 October 1st. Now is a good time to start.

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.

 

 

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Old 09-28-2010, 08:54 PM
 
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I am in! I have done this challenge before and it is great. I keep track of daily itemized expenses on my computer. But I like to come onto MDC and report a daily spend/no spend/frivalous spend day.
I'm Vicki a stay-at-home, homeschooling Mom of 4 girls.

My goals this month are to...
Get as close to an extra $1000 in savings as possible
Cash Only- NO Credit Cards
Eat out 1x per week
Make more foods from scratch
Keep an itemized, running list of "wants" and research/plan before we buy
5 No Spend Days

My Key:
Budgeted, planned spending (includes groceries, gas, other necessary or well planned items- NOT impulse items)
No Spend
No Drive
Impulse, Unnecessary Spending
Eat Out

Vicki- Homeschooling Mama to 4 girls
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Old 09-28-2010, 09:52 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Keep an itemized, running list of "wants" and research/plan before we buy
I need to do this too.

 

 

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Old 09-28-2010, 10:14 PM
 
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I am IN!!!

We have been on BS3 forever in the Dave plan forever, largely b/c I really want 12 months in savings and have not had any luck sticking to my guns on that one.

I have a spreadsheet that mocks me every time I open in, but am really wasteful in my spending--huge impulse buyer (magazines), not a good meal planner, etc.

So I will really try to buckle down this month.

No real goals, but I just want a place to track my spending and be accountable so that I don't have any waste.
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Old 09-29-2010, 12:35 AM
 
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Hi everyone.

I'm Chandra. Married, with 2.5 year old son and a daughter due any day now.

October is going to be a big month for us. We are moving this weekend (Oct 1-3) and baby sister is going to make her entrance sometime.

My goals:

No unnecessary spending
Keep moving expenses to a minimum
Make due with what I have before a "quick trip" to Target that always costs way more than I think it will
Restock the pantry and fridge, but be efficient
Our first month of a quasi-Dave Ramsey budget (September was information gathering for us. What an eye-opener)
Join financial forces with husband for first time in our almost 6 year marriage

And most important: Find a peaceful way to welcome our daughter amid the inevitable moving chaos!! Ok, that one's not a financial goal but important to us.

Chandra

Mama to Ryan (03/23/08) and Baby Sister (EDD 10/19/10). Co sleeping, extended breastfeeding, delayed vaccinating, baby wearing, cloth diapering attached family.
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Old 09-29-2010, 01:20 AM
 
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My ultimate goal is to have enough saved so that DH and I don't have to teach summer school and our new baby can stay home from the nursery with us for those 10 weeks.
This would mean a lot to me.

Plan--Spend $ on groceries, laundry (detergent and about $4 a load for the machines), subway fare, and one date-night meal out a week plus stamps, phone, cable and electric bill and our mega expensive student loans and mega expensive rent.

I have never tracked my grocery spending before so I'm thinking this will be a real learning experience. I'm a little nervous to confess how much I spend on food--but I think it will help me save for a summer together as a family.
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10. book-$7
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Dude, I really suck at this. Totally lost track of grocery receipts and didn't even make it halfway through the month before I did some unplanned spending. (Although I consider the peppermint oil and pest control system to be justifiable purchases as I saw a mouse in the apt. the other day.)
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Old 09-29-2010, 04:00 AM
 
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I'm Marissa, a working mom to a 16 month old girl, and another baby arriving in March.

October is going to be our first month really tracking our spending. I'm trying, as always, to make sure we have more coming in then we do going out this month. I'm trying to set some money aside for visiting family at thanksgiving and for buying Christmas presents. we have $700 put aside right now, but I want to get it up to $1,000 (DF and I both have large families to buy presents for, and I like round numbers. what doesn't get used for the holidays will be moving into the emergency fund afterwards). at the same time, DD just moved to her own room, and I really want to get it decorated for her, because right now it's still set up as my library.

Marissa, Partner to J geek.gif, SAHM to A (05/09)fly-by-nursing1.gif and I (03/11)stork-boy.gif. we cd.gif
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Old 09-29-2010, 12:26 PM
 
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Who you are

I'm Sarah. Married WOHM to DD and expecting DS in January.

Where you are going (your financial goals) and

I'd like to start saving more money. We have no debt, except the mortgage (8.5 years remaining on that one), but our savings have been eaten away by recent renovations. Currently, I put away $200 every two weeks to replenish medium term savings. I'd like to increase that to at least $500 every two weeks.

How you plan to get there

Spend less money? I actually hate going shopping, so staying out of shops isn't too hard for me. But staying out of online shops is more difficult. My goal for this month is at least 15 no spend days. I have some expenses that I know are coming up this month: our front porch is getting replaced, and I want to establish my veggie garden for next year (I'm putting in raised beds). So, the goal savings wise is to put in my usual amount and not withdraw any extra to pay for this month's expenses.

0/15 no spend days
0/$400 added to savings

Mum to DD 9/07 and DS 01/11

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Old 09-30-2010, 08:12 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Last day before we start...

 

 

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Old 09-30-2010, 09:58 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crunchy*VT*Mom View Post
Last day before we start...
I'm so ready for a new month!!

Vicki- Homeschooling Mama to 4 girls
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Old 09-30-2010, 11:42 AM
 
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Who you are
I'm Kim, mum to 2 little monkeys + transitioning from a 32 hr/wk gig leading a nonprofit to WAH as a freelance writer/editor (DH works FT + is in school FT).

Where you are going (financial goals)
Have 2-3 months of regular salary remaining. Excited to embark on a new adventure, delighted to have more time w/ our homeschooled kiddos, + occasionally overwhelmed trying to make the new budget #'s work.

GOALS:
6-12 months: positive cashflow after leaving job + don't touch (meager) savings

12-24 months: hardcore debt assault

How you plan to get there
For October...
* Do Something DAILY to earn/save money: (0/31)
(recently examples - switched DH to Tracphone for <$10/mo. including cost of phone, selling unneeded Britax, cancelled infrequently used Y membership)
* Food Spending: 0/$500 (this would be really low for us + will require lots of planning)
* No Drive Days: 0/6
* Practice gratitude daily

###

This thread has been enormously helpful to me in years past. Looking forward to posting regularly and drawing inspiration as I make the scary, exciting, ripe-with-possibilities transition to WAH. Fingers crossed our budget survives.
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Old 09-30-2010, 01:29 PM
 
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Cute thread title, CruncyVTMom! Thanks for all of your work in keeping this going.

a. Who you are

Laura, a suburban SAHM to two small children. I may not work outside the home, but through this Challenge--as well as various financial choices and acts of frugality--I am "earning" more for my family than I would have in the workforce. Yes, Virginia, I've calculated it!!

b. Where you are going (your financial goals)

My most pressing goals are to pay off mortgage in 4.5-5 years and to save up an Emergency Fund consisting of 6 month's worth of DH's take-home pay.

c. How you plan to get there

1. Groceries at < $120.00 per week.

2. Garage sales and thrift stores for other NECESSARY shopping.

3. Maintain my successful weaning from the almighty Daily Latte Out.

4. Drink more tea. This sounds unusual and bears explaining. I'm a coffee addict, and buying coffee takes a big bite out of our grocery budget. Tea, by contrast, is a heck of a lot cheaper, so I'm trying to develop a taste for it.

5. Two no-drive days per week. (This is tough. I live in Suburbia).

6. Buy sewing machine and learn to sew. I should note that the motive here is to learn how to repair, recycle, hem, and create items to be used for frugal purposes, such as cloth mama pads.

Here's my key:

= No spend or budgeted spending
= Unnecessary/unbudgeted spending
= No-drive day
= Had tea today
= Hung clothes on the line.

OK, ladies. Bring it on!! (I say while securing padlock to wallet).

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Old 09-30-2010, 03:56 PM
 
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I am in again! I these threads!!

a. Who you are

Kristine Mom to 3 girls. I continue to strive for a simpler life which means less stuff....

b. Where you are going (your financial goals)

More savings...no debt

c. How you plan to get there

Keep living within our means. Keep track of every penny and of course keep coming back to these threads so I am accountable.
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Old 09-30-2010, 04:40 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks guys! These threads have saved me a TON of money these past three years so I'm happy to keep them up. I appreciate you long-timers hanging with me!

Soooo...my October goals:

0/15 No Spend Days...I made 12 last month, I'm aiming for 15 this month.
0/3 Let the Car Rest Days
0/25 Fast Food Free Days -- Cook at home, woman.

I spent a boogatinormous amount of money last month on groceries ($900), cookbooks ($60), cookbook holder ($43) and a black lace totally-frivolous apron ($25). So don't you think I should be staying at home and cooking some of that up? I agree. My goal is to prepare food in our home for at least 25 days next month.

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Come on big ole long string of ...I want my posts to look like Jenny's and Kristine's!

 

 

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Old 09-30-2010, 10:37 PM
 
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Goals:

2/15 No-Spend Days (paying bills doesn't count!)
1/10 No-Drive Days
3/25 Eating-At-Home Days
Planned/Acceptable Purchases
Frivolous Purchases

Also I'm *not* putting down eating out as a spend - I'm going to try to keep the total down for that too obviously, though.

1/1 Thrift Store Day
$95/$300 Grocery Bill



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03.. (I kinda cheated cos we used the deli from the grocery store and bought some processed junky snacks that we don't normally... but hey, it wasn't a restaurant or fast food place, so I'm putting it down anyway!)
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Old 09-30-2010, 11:03 PM
 
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a. Who you are
Heather, SAHM to my beautiful girls. DD1 is 3 1/2 and DD2 is 22 months. Im also due with a little peanut in Feb. We currently live in Japan (just in case anyone wonders why Im posting a day ahead of everyone else..)

b. Where you are going (your financial goals) and
We need to save as much as possible between now and December because we might be moving back to the states in December depending on what the military decides to do with us.

c. How you plan to get there
Big thing with us is disorganization and clutter. I find that I spend so much time/energy finding and repairing things that a lot of time I just end up replacing them because Im tired/sick/just plain out of time. I need to start organizing and decluttering the house so that its better and more useable. No use having stuff laying around (like a cat carrier when we haven't owned a cat in over 2 years) that we dont' have a use for.
Need to stick to a food budget.
Need to make a budget for birthdays/holidays and not overspend this year. Try to make as many presents as possible or get them from the thrift store/on clearance.
Make whatever clothes for DD I can't find at the thrift store since the little girls clothing selection over here leaves alot to be desired.
Don't go places after DH gets off. Whenever we do we tend to eat out.
Limit eating out to 2 days MAX
Remember to pack snacks/lunch/food for whereever we go so I dont' end up getting the kids snacks/drinks.

GOALS:
Food budget 400.00 (usually its 300 but after going over every single month we decided to up it and see where we land. Usually we spend around 350 on food)
DH budget- need to talk to him but Im trying to convince him not to use his debit card during the week to leave it at home.
DD2's birthday budget- 40.00 (need to get stuff to make a cake and a couple of misc things)
Christmas budget: 500.00 total for all gifts/meals/cookies/whatever
Baby budget: still working with DH on this one. We find out the gender hopefully next week. What gender it is depends on what we get.
Organization budget: 100.00 (I need to get some containers and labels so I can organize things. Part of the reason everything is so cluttered is I have no place to organize things in so they just get thrown in the cupboard.)
Thrift store budget: 40.00 (need new dresses for DD1 since she outgrew almost all her clothes and my hand me down network is going dry now that shes bigger, also need to pick up some more maternity clothing since Im wearing the same 2 skirts every day)

~Heather~ Mama to Miss E (1/07), Miss A (11/08), Mr.T (2/11) and Miss A (10/12) Expecting our newest blessing sometime late Sept/early Oct.. Wife to my Marine since 11/2005
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Old 09-30-2010, 11:07 PM
 
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No Spend:
Budget spend:
Oopsies:
Eat at home(): 0/29
No drive days(): 0/20
Pack a snack(): 0/31
Declutter my life days(): 0/25
Working on presents/clothing days (): 0/25
Food budget 0/400
DH budget- 0/150
DD2's birthday budget- 0/40.00
Christmas budget: 0/500
Baby budget: 0/????
Organization budget: 0/100
Thrift store budget: 0/40
Personal spending: 0/100 (wasn't going to add this but DH says if he gets money to spend so do I, silly man).

~Heather~ Mama to Miss E (1/07), Miss A (11/08), Mr.T (2/11) and Miss A (10/12) Expecting our newest blessing sometime late Sept/early Oct.. Wife to my Marine since 11/2005
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Old 09-30-2010, 11:17 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crunchy*VT*Mom View Post
I spent a boogatinormous amount of money last month on groceries ($900), cookbooks ($60), cookbook holder ($43) and a black lace totally-frivolous apron ($25). So don't you think I should be staying at home and cooking some of that up? I agree. My goal is to prepare food in our home for at least 25 days next month.
I have quite an apron collection too (though none as expensive as that one, luckily aprons are really cheap to get over here) so I need to get to using them as well. DH has asked like 3-4 times since he got home when Im going to start making bread again, he just got home 2 days ago and spent the last 29 hours at work.. I think the man wants some homemade bread.

~Heather~ Mama to Miss E (1/07), Miss A (11/08), Mr.T (2/11) and Miss A (10/12) Expecting our newest blessing sometime late Sept/early Oct.. Wife to my Marine since 11/2005
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Old 10-01-2010, 12:59 AM
 
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a. Who you are:

I'm Andrea, aka. Cyrusmama, SAHM to two beautiful boys. Cy is 6 and J is 19months. New to keeping a log of our spending

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

Very short term, Have money left over at the end of the month to poke back for Christmas. We are also planning a small trip in the middle of the month and need to have some extra for this. Longer term, have enough saved to help us if dh is unemployed this spring for a couple months as he has been in the past.

c. How you plan to get there:

1. Groceries at < $150.00 per week. (averaged as we do a big bulk grocery trip mid month)

2. No clothing purchases for the boys unless necessity. (yes, this is my weakness)

3. No more than 1 grocery run per week. Making meal planning a necessity.

Here's my key:

= No spend or budgeted spending
= Unnecessary/unbudgeted spending
= No-drive day
= eat-at-home day
= packed a lunch, snack
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Old 10-01-2010, 01:23 AM
 
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a. Who you are
Jenny, SAHM to DD (6) and DS (17 months).

b. Where you are going (your financial goals) and
I need to lay off the stuff. I keep buying crap and I am running out of places to store it. I also need to start saving for Christmas and DH's inevitable slow down at work (He's a stone mason/landscape foreman in Northern New England, not much for him to do when the ground is frozen solid! )

c. How you plan to get there
*Avoid shopping for entertainment. This includes online shopping. I certainly can find better ways to spend my time.
*I also would like to make an effort to eat out of the pantry as much as possible. Both of ours are really, really full. I need to get creative with our meals!

Jenny, proud maker of red things
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Old 10-01-2010, 02:20 AM
 
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a. Who you are
I'm Nina, mom to Libby & Elliot. I'm going back to work as a video editor part time this month. This is going to be a big adjustment for everyone since my 4-day week includes weekends and my DH Wally gets to try his hand at being the SAHP two days a week

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

Stay on budget, on budget, and on budget. We're not in terrible financial shape and that's thanks in part to our small apartment and shared car. We save every month, but I have a hard time with the little things and I really want to keep the spendy-spendy on track so I have enough for the things I *really* want, not the crap that I regret buying.

c. How you plan to get there
I will come on here and track all my discretionary spending. I will bring my lunch to work every day and never ever go to Tim Horton's. I will buy 'wants' only if I have money at the end of the month, not at the beginning or the middle because I think I'm doing fine.

Goals:
$750 or less on household account
$125 or less on personal account
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Old 10-01-2010, 03:36 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Ahhh...off to a good start. It is actually rare for me to get a no-spend on the first day.

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My Goals:

1/15 No Spend Days
0/3 Let the Car Rest Days
0/25 Fast Food Free Days

 

 

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Old 10-01-2010, 04:20 PM
 
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Hi Everyone!
I am a mainly SAHM to 2 wonderful kids. I don't usually venture into this area of MDC but something drew me here this morning. Now I know why! This thread is exactly what I need to get me back on track with spending.

Here are my financial goals for this month:
write down all purchases
spend less than $150/week on groceries
eat out/take out 5 times or less this month
only one trip to Starbucks per week (this is huge for me)
no clothing purchases for the kids-unless I find an awesome deal on winter coats/boots and a pair of jeans for DD (her current pair are getting very short)
start using the library again
research cheaper cable/tv options

Visit this forum more often!

10/1 $69.96 groceries
10/2 $0
10/3 $81.86 groceries

Week one grocerery total: $151.82
Starbucks:
Clothing:

Mama to DD1 2007, DS 2009, DD2 2012, What a Journey this parenting thing is...
 

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Old 10-01-2010, 04:52 PM
 
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Hi all! I'd like to join in (for the first time!). I've been trying to stay on track but think this will help me a lot (if I remember and am able to get back to the thread daily )

I'm Heather, SAHM to Henry, 20months. My DH brings home the bacon, takes care of the yard and repairs, and I do pretty much everything else with our money and running the household.
We're new to having one income, and we are floundering a little. Having used up most all of our (meager) savings in a long-distance move to get a great job for DH near lots of family in a beautiful area of the country (Upper Michigan), we are having trouble climbing back on top of the barrel. We incurred some debt in making improvements to our home, which sucks, but was necessary. We're basically living check to check right now, and covering all the bills without using credit.

We'd like to get back on track with aggressive debt repayment, and rebuilding our emergency fund. Once we finish with small debts (credit cards and student loan), we'd like to focus on getting rid of the mortgage and transitioning to buying some land and living off the grid in 10-15 years.

We plan to get there with careful budgeting, limiting spending and minimizing expenses as much as possible. I bake our own bread, make yogurt, can/freeze surplus, fix almost all meals at home, and my husband can make or repair most anything. We are planning our garden for next year (we moved in June, so couldn't get one in this year and had a CSA instead). Thrift/second-hand shopping for clothes and household items, scrounge from discards from family and limit driving when possible (DH bikes to work most days, and I try to limit trips to town to 2-3 days a week when I can, although for socializing, it's hard to say no when you have a chance to hang with cool mamas who also have toddlers and want you to come over to knit and drink tea!). We will try to conserve energy with heat and electric and make use of the outdoors for family fun rather than spending $ on entertainment (except for Netflix for the occasional "date night at home").

I'm going to respectfully copy cyrusmama's key (I hope that's ok!).

= No spend or budgeted spending
= Unnecessary/unbudgeted spending
= No-drive day
= eat-at-home day
= packed a lunch, snack

I'll make another post to start tracking, because this one is too long already!

Married to P and mama to DS (1/09)blahblah.gifand DD  (09/13 babygirl.gif). I'm into friends and family, gardening, exercise, yoga, reading, knitting, photos, traditional foods, breastfeeding, home birth, babywearing, and much more. 
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Old 10-01-2010, 04:59 PM
 
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01.. Refrigerator repair DH was unable to do. Boo. Paid the due monthly bills as per my budget. Ate all meals at home
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Married to P and mama to DS (1/09)blahblah.gifand DD  (09/13 babygirl.gif). I'm into friends and family, gardening, exercise, yoga, reading, knitting, photos, traditional foods, breastfeeding, home birth, babywearing, and much more. 
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Old 10-01-2010, 09:28 PM
 
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I didn't post last night. Ended up crashing early with a severe migrane.

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No Spend:
Budget spend:
Oopsies:
Eat at home(): 1/29
No drive days(): 1/20
Pack a snack(): 1/31
Declutter my life days(): 1/25
Working on presents/clothing days (): 1/25
Food budget 0/400
DH budget- 0/150
DD2's birthday budget- 0/40.00
Christmas budget: 0/500
Baby budget: 0/????
Organization budget: 0/100
Thrift store budget: 0/40
Personal spending: 0/100

~Heather~ Mama to Miss E (1/07), Miss A (11/08), Mr.T (2/11) and Miss A (10/12) Expecting our newest blessing sometime late Sept/early Oct.. Wife to my Marine since 11/2005
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Old 10-01-2010, 11:45 PM
 
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= No spend or budgeted spending
= Unnecessary/unbudgeted spending
= No-drive day
= eat-at-home day
= packed a lunch, snack



01.. = both dh and I ended up getting home late so we had dinner out , Fridays are our crazy day unfortunately
02.. , = went to a craft show, packed a lunch and stayed under the budget we allotted ourselves, buying 4 gifts for Christmas for a total of $7
03.. = ate at home, despite a trip to the er, sick baby
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06.. = unexpected dr run but no meds needed
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Old 10-02-2010, 06:06 AM
 
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a. Who you are
I'm mama to a toddler and a pre-teen (which can get exciting at times) and a college student who is pretty involved with some organizations at school. I'm out of the house several times a week, which makes a challenge like this trickier, but I keep wanting to do it. I often feel a little intimidated by these threads because some of you folks are amazing, but I'm going to make myself post all the same!

b. Where you are going (your financial goals) and
We've gotten hit with some horrible bills... not going into it too much right here, but we really need to make an effort to save as much as we can so we can pay down those bills and (if possible) rebuild our savings.

I'm struggling with what is a realistic amount to spend this much -- I'd love to say "NONE AT ALL!" but that's just not realistic this month. There's a birthday and some other expenses coming up (those kids are growing like weeds! why can't their clothes grow with them?!), but I can definitely spend less. I'm shooting for $800 or less for the month (monthly bills excepted).

c. How you plan to get there
I plan to report on all of our spending (other than the monthly bills). To help us spend less, we'll:

Eat at home or pack a lunch or snack for when we're not at home (the birthday may be the exception)
Try to spend no more than $35/week on groceries (or $50/week on groceries & toiletries combined)
Use our pantry/freezer stockpile so we can keep the grocery bill down
Only get "treats" (Starbucks, etc.) if we have free coupons or gift cards
Shift our library day to Saturdays (so we can walk to the library instead of driving over in a hurry after dinner before they close)
Walk or use public transit more (although I'm already trying to do that with going to school)

KEY (I'm modifying the one that everyone seems to be using):
= no spend day!
= budgeted spending
= unnecessary/unbudgeted spending
= walked or used public transit
= eat-at-home day
= packed a lunch/snack

And so, my month begins...

Oct 1st. $53.66!
Went to the grocery store to stock up on a few things, but didn't pay as close attention to what was going into my cart as I should have! I guess it could have been a lot worse since I used $23 in coupons, but still! At least we stuck to the plan of making dinner at home.

I'm still determined to do this, warts and all.

Mama to Munchkin  and Chickadee ...and co-parent to 3 additional bundles of energy!
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Old 10-02-2010, 10:59 AM
 
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After soccer, off to the exceptionally cool (and totally free) "Know the Coast Day". If anyone is in NH/ME/MA, check it out; they have a fab line-up of events and activities: http://www.unh.edu/knowthecoast/

10/1:

Necessary/in budget spending: 1/28
Do something to earn/save $: 1/31
Food: 0/$500
No Drive Days: 1/6
Practice gratitude: 1/31
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Old 10-02-2010, 12:08 PM
 
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= No spend or budgeted spending
= Unnecessary/unbudgeted spending
= No-drive day
= Had tea today
= Hung clothes on the line.

1. Ran errands. Forgot to pack snacks. Crashed with hunger and went to TCBY. Ugh! What a start. But . . .
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In God we trust; all others must show data. selectivevax.gifsurf.gifteapot2.GIFintactivist.gif
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