September No-Spend Challenge: We're in the home stretch! Stay Strong Finish with us - Page 3 - Mothering Forums

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#61 of 1358 Old 08-31-2007, 11:30 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Crunchy*VT*Mom View Post
Tomorrow is the start of our challenge.

Is there any way you could better set yourself up for success today?

For me this means:

1. Filling the car up with gas today.

2. Writing out a monthly grocery menu and going to Costco for groceries.

Gas and groceries are both necessities...and I'll be getting them throughout the month and won't be recording them BUT..... I have found that going to Costco or Walmart or even the grocery store is a big trigger for me.

When I'm there to get essentials, I want to buy other things too.

So I'm trying to limit the trips to these places in September.

Is there anyplace that is a trigger for you? Target? A thrift store? Starbucks?

What can you do today...while it is still August...that would maybe allow you not to go there in September?

We are going to have a rockin' money-saving month!!
I will fill up the car with gas. I will also stay out of the grocery store as much as possible this month. HUGE trigger for me. I would also like to stay out of Super Target. Maybe I'll make my goal 2 trips to Super Target this month. I recently got some Evert-Fresh produce bags so hopefully I can get more produce and have it last longer.

I figured I can spend an average of $36.60 per day for the month of September and stay within my budget. So I will need to "save up" for a few days for larger purchases.

This is going to suck .

BUT if I had been more careful and responsible with my money recently I wouldn't be in this situation, so it's time to suck it up and work on saving.
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#62 of 1358 Old 08-31-2007, 11:48 AM
 
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Hi Everyone!!

I'm in again for September..

My goal this month is to start making money on ebay.. And this time I mean it. It was my goal for August too, and I have yet to set up the seller/paypal account...

Also, will pack all snacks for outings since that sucked a lot of my spending money in August..

Good Luck Ladies!!!
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#63 of 1358 Old 08-31-2007, 11:51 AM
 
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I know it isn't September yet but I wanted to say.... I'm all ready 1/2 way to making my September credit card payment on the BIG card and all the way on the small one!!!
That's great!!!
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#64 of 1358 Old 08-31-2007, 03:01 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Crunchy*VT*Mom View Post
Tomorrow is the start of our challenge.

Is there any way you could better set yourself up for success today?

What can you do today...while it is still August...that would maybe allow you not to go there in September?

We are going to have a rockin' money-saving month!!
I got gas today and my last hoorah of fast food..a pepsi and a breakfast burrito!

Dh is bringing home cash for our envelopes

I did forget that i have a textbook to buy for one of my classes I am guessing that will be abut $100:
But I am very excited about starting the challenge!!
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#65 of 1358 Old 08-31-2007, 03:29 PM
 
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I know it isn't September yet but I wanted to say.... I'm all ready 1/2 way to making my September credit card payment on the BIG card and all the way on the small one!!!
yea! *high-fives* i did too!

i paid off my amex that i charged last month. our only credit card with a balance now is hubby's chase and i have already paid $200 for next month.

i have not paid it off yet because it is 0% until february 2008. i hate looking at that balance so as soon as feb comes, i'm paying it off. i just don't want to at the moment.

most of our utilities due in sept are already paid, including the 2nd loan on our mortgage (we have a 20/80).

i want to save some money!!

anyone have some spreadsheets they wouldn't mind passing around? thanks!

shellie - momma to two adorable girls and my cutie boy
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#66 of 1358 Old 08-31-2007, 04:54 PM
 
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Okay I'm back now and have figured out my budget. So let's try this again.

Introducing me:
I'm a SAHM (bartend on weekend nights) to a 2yo DD and 2mo old DS. DH makes fairly good money and I make a nice extra chunk at work. DH justed started a new job about a month and a half ago. We are finally caught back up from the bad job before but have been splurging since and need to quit.

Why I need to save:
We have to save about $4000 for atty. and surveyor fees to be able to sell our land. If we can get this done and sell the land then we can finally try to buy land and build a new house. (We REALLY need a new house)

Goals:
* No spend days: 15
* No more than one meal out a week.
* Plan out a monthly menu and stick to it!
* Cook more at home and do some feed the freezer so we'll have quick meals on hand and not eat out.
* Quit spending on things we don't need. (i.e. buying more clothes just b/c its a good deal... well not if we don't need it~!)

Budget/Exemptions:
* Bills
* Groceries: no more than $200mo
* Gas/misc.: no more than $50wk
* Christmas gifts (I'm starting early and making some gifts so I'll allow for buying ONLY things to make gifts: yarn, etc.): $50mo
* Cloth diapers (I need to buy supplies to finish out our stash): $50mo
* DH is getting a day out tomorrow. He deserves it. He never goes anywhere and he works hard. He'll be taking $30.
* Supplies to fix our camper (been putting it off. DH is going nuts): $100

I don't think we should have any other exemptions later. I'm not really sure how much we'll really need for groceries, gas, etc. but I think these amts. seem reasonable. Maybe I can stick to my budget now.
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#67 of 1358 Old 08-31-2007, 05:18 PM
 
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Okay I'm going to go ahead and start. I'm going out of town tomorrow so today will be my 1st post. I'll post my spending tomorrow later.

I figured our wkly budget from DH's check. After the Christmas gift, cd's, his day out, gas/misc for this wk, camper, and groceries for the month (I figured w/ the monthly totals for all these except gas *just 1 wk* although it may not actually be spent this wk its in the bank and reserved now.) I transferred the balance of the acct to our second/savings acct.

So far for Sept: $200 saved Yeah!!

All money from my job this wkend, including chk, will go in a jar at the house to be saved. I'll post those amts later. But one day and $200... wow! I hope I can stay on track all month!
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#68 of 1358 Old 08-31-2007, 05:48 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Crunchy*VT*Mom View Post
1. Please introduce yourself and tell us anything you think it would help us to know about yourself.

2. Please tell us why you have decided to spend nothing (or spend significantly less) for the Month of September. Memorize these goals and recite them to yourself before all purchases.

3. 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?
I'm Sara. SAHM to two (3 yrs and 18 mos). DH works long hours & our house is for sale (so I put half the toys away and hate to get the house messy so we leave the house a lot) and I shop for recreation and "therapy."

DH is retiring from the military in a couple months adn ont only do I need to get used to living on less, but I don't want to be kicking myself in 6 months for all the money I squandered on Starbucks, fast food, and way too many cute outfits for the kiddos.

I can spend money on:

1 dress or 1 skirt for DD (at consignment sale)

1 sweater for DD (consignment sale)

hat and mittens (just one set) for DS (at consignment sale)

groceries

But, no:

eating out

shopping at the mall or anywhere else just for fun

Both the kids start preschool two days a week for a couple hours and on another day we go to a bible study in the morning. This will alleviate a lot of the stress all of us feel from being bored at home and that makes me want to shop. Afternoons are for naps and in the evenings DH is home.

For us, not spending money will be all about staying busy and bringing a couple of sandwiches for the road!
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#69 of 1358 Old 08-31-2007, 07:07 PM
 
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1. Please introduce yourself and tell us anything you think it would help us to know about yourself.

Hi ladies! 2nd no spend challenge month for me...whew! I am a WOHM and my DH is a full time student. We have one DS :

2. Please tell us why you have decided to spend nothing (or spend significantly less) for the Month of September. Memorize these goals and recite them to yourself before all purchases.

One full time student and one DS makes for a tight budget, even more so now that DH has to take day classes for the first time and we need childcare. So here are the goals:

1. DS deserves good childcare
2. DH and I deserve to be debt free
3. Living isn't living when you're barely making it and we refuse to live that way.
4. DH and I deserve to go away overnight for our anniversary, we can't do that if we spend, spend, spend.


3. 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?

1. Any budgeted spend money comes out today IN CASH. The debit cards get put away NOW.
2. If we are low on budgeted spending money there are no good excuses, we can come up with fun, alternative plans with friends and family that are FREE!
3. DH is on board. This is HUGE for me this month.
4. Bye, Bye Diaper Service, hello laundry.

Rachael ~ Wife to : DH ~ Son 4-24-07 ~ 6-24-08 ~ Daughter 7-22-09
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#70 of 1358 Old 08-31-2007, 10:27 PM
 
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1. Please introduce yourself and tell us anything you think it would help us to know about yourself.

I'm frog. I live with my partner, turtle, and our five ridiculous cats who we love beyond reason. I was here in August, but, well, there was some sucking. Rather a lot of sucking, really. I hate that.

2. Please tell us why you have decided to spend nothing (or spend significantly less) for the Month of September. Memorize these goals and recite them to yourself before all purchases.

We're in serious credit card debt. It started while we were trying to get me pregnant last year--those swimmers aren't cheap!--but it continued as we made really bad decisions. We've figured out what's at the root of that for each of us, agreed on a plan for how to spend/save moving forward and we're down to one credit card (which I carry, and which is used only for gas and car repairs) and the debit card (which I also carry, and which is used only to withdraw our spending money). We have a large mortgage, but no student loans or car loans.

In addition to the above, there's a good chance we're going to be adding two children to our lives sometime soon. I haven't owned the house long enough to have decent equity in it, so I'm going to need to withdraw from my 401K to pay the fees, should this adoption go through. If this one falls through, I suspect we'll put ourselves on the interested parents list and see what happens. Of course, there are fees related to that, too, and I'd really like NOT to have to dip into my retirement to make this happen, but that's my plan if necessary. Fortunately, I have another 30 years in the workforce and my employer matches my contributions 1:1 up to 5% of my salary, so I should be able to recoup my money fairly quickly.

3. 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?

-- Cash only for groceries, take-out, treats, etc. Whenever possible, we'll barter or swap.

-- My goal is 15 no-spend days. I know that's low, but I've got to start somewhere.

-- Continue swapping for and making holiday gifts.

-- Cut back on the smoking.

-- Cut back on the mail-based swaps; at a minimum, commit to swapping lighter items. Postage is killing me.

-- Have a successful garage sale on 14/15.
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#71 of 1358 Old 08-31-2007, 10:51 PM
 
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Frog, that is wonderful about the children that may come into your life! It sounds very meant to be .


Okay, after hemming and hawing about doing this again, I'm in. I really only questioned doing it b/c I feel like I have been doing the past 2 no spend months very, well, half assed is the phrase that comes to mind. It is one thing to join the challenge, but quite another to go through it and really spend less. I am going to really do it this month. I know that my spending is why our budget is always tight at the end of the month, DH spends practically nothing ever. It is my little purchases or things bought online/coops that eat up our money. Gosh, why is it so hard to type that? I am the one who has read all the financial books and does the research and work on our budget, so why am I the one making it harder?

Oh, I'm Nadia, SAHM to dd 4.5, ds almost 3, and ds almost 3 months.

I am going to no spend so that we can get some things done around the house that need doing and so we can buy the bigger things that we would like for cash.

Goals:

No spend days: 20/30
Blow $: $20 or less for the month
No out food: 26/30

Allowed spending:
~$50-75 for diapers for the babe. He's outgrowing all the smalls we have already. I am hoping to fund this from my pp balance and not from our monthly budget.
~$25-35 for FILs bday present
~Shoes for dd for school if I don't have anything put away in the closet for her. Less than $20 if I buy them.

Baking mama to dd (7.5), ds (6), ds (3.5) and someone new in April
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#72 of 1358 Old 08-31-2007, 10:57 PM
 
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"My best change was my frame of mind about it. I'm not depriving myself, I'm furthering myself. I'm not going to buy something because "I deserve it". I'm going to turn it away because I don't need it, can make do with cheaper alternatives, and "deserve" to reap the savings of doing so"

There is an awesome quote from the frugal living thread for some great inspiration!

Baking mama to dd (7.5), ds (6), ds (3.5) and someone new in April
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#73 of 1358 Old 09-01-2007, 12:41 AM
 
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1. Please introduce yourself and tell us anything you think it would help us to know about yourself.

I'm mama to Henry, who just turned two (I really need to change my username!). I'm a SAHM; DH is an engineer who also plays/records/mixes music in his spare time. He also has three teenagers from a previous marriage who are with us some of the time. And finally, we're hoping to add one more baby to the mix -- we're doing a frozen embryo transfer next week Tuesday!

2. Please tell us why you have decided to spend nothing (or spend significantly less) for the Month of September. Memorize these goals and recite them to yourself before all purchases.

I've dabbled in frugality most of my adult life, but I go through periods when I sort of close my eyes and spend -- mostly on things like organic bedding or essential oils or other things that seem like a good use of our money and that I can sort of justify. I also splurge at Starbucks or on Amazon. This sort of spending needs to stop. We moved last February and while we thankfully have no other debt payments besides our mortgage, the house payment is over 50% of DH's take-home and we have NO SAVINGS. If I get pregnant again we'll need to pay for a midwife and we also need a new roof. Money in the bank would be good, too.

3. 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?

I do a budget every month and intend to transfer the money over for any cc purchases immediately, but I've been getting so far off track that it's all thrown out the window after a few weeks. This weekend I plan on catching up on balancing our checking account, paying off our credit cards (we do have the money this month to do that), and writing up a new budget. I also want to re-do my household binder (of which the budget is part) to get more organized. I think being organized is key to this, for me anyway. I also like the idea of trying not to use the car. One of the reaons we moved here is that there's so much within walking distance. I could easily be taking Henry to the library and the park several times a week -- I don't know why I haven't been.

I'm not going to post my goals for no-spend or no-drive days...I'm going to take it a day at a time. I can't think of anything we really NEED besides food and gas. Oh, and DH and I are each allotted $30 per week in spending money, and I'm going to start saving ALL of mine. I really don't know where it goes usually!

Formerly New Mama to Henry, born August 2005 and Silas, born November 2010.
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#74 of 1358 Old 09-01-2007, 12:49 AM
 
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I'm back for September. Let's see how many smiley faces I get this month. .

I will do my VERY best to stay away from ebay, amazon. I just paid off 2 credit cards, and have banned myself from using them. I will use my debit card for everything so I can keep better track of where my money is going. I would take $20 out of the ATM when I only needed $5 and would end up spending the whole $20 in a day or 2 just cause I had it. A week later I'd wonder what in the world I'd spent my money on.

I like coming here to "report", makes me wanna post a smiley face or a thumbs up.

Proud mama to : Nicholas James born 3/19/09
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#75 of 1358 Old 09-01-2007, 01:02 AM
 
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I am excited and nervous about this but rarin' to go!

I have to buy fresh produce tomorrow and milk. But that's a need. I am making a list and sticking to it!

I plan on leaving my debit card home whenever I go out. And not taking my debit card for the account with my spending money. I will take my card with my savings..I would never touch that but I want to have that on me in case of emergency.

I am going to buy my produce/perishables this week and whatever that comes to will be my budget from now on..so if I spend $40 on fruit, veggies, eggs, milk and bread that will be all I take in cash for the week.

I am trying to set myself up for success.

Good luck everybody!
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#76 of 1358 Old 09-01-2007, 02:13 AM
 
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Is there any way you could better set yourself up for success today?

My biggest thing is take out pizza! If I take a look at my credit card bills from the past year sadly it's mostly pizaa!

I think that if I have food in the house that I will enjoy eating then I won't want to order out. Also if I have a few frozen pizzas to satisfy the craving I won't be tempted. I don't really like it much,but there is one kind I really enjoy. Dr.Otker!!! So I think when I hit the stores this weekend I'll pick one or two up.

I do sometimes crave Tim Hortons or a bubble tea. Luckily I'm to lazy to walk all the way there for a drink!

I know in a month or so I'm going to get a blender so I can make my own ice caps and smoothies and not spend as much money.
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#77 of 1358 Old 09-01-2007, 02:20 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Yeah! Frog that is wonderful news!!!! I am really hoping everything works out for you and your family.

 

 

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#78 of 1358 Old 09-01-2007, 02:32 AM
 
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That's amazing!!! I'm so glad that some of us have been able to pay a big part of the bills we need to pay in September all ready!

My goal is to be debt free by December 21. I'm not sure if it will happen for sure,but I'm going to do my very best.

I am using a spreadsheet too. Just something my computer came with.It's very simple.Actually it had all these dumb extra things that just confused me so I changed it up a bit. Now it has what I earn,what I need to spend each month and what my debt is. Each time I make apayment I deduct a little bit. It makes me feel so good to see that number go down. It makes me feel like the debt is actually disapearing. The amount I have in there isn't the exact number though b/c it's always changing with the interest and all that,but it's close enough for me.
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#79 of 1358 Old 09-01-2007, 02:34 AM
 
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Okay I am in...my name is Kureen and I am a SAHM to my almost 4 year old DD and my 2 year old DS.

Goals-
no eating out this month except for my birthday dinner
absolutely no frivolous spending
meal plan
sell cloth diapers for extra money
report here everyday for accountability

We really need to crack down if we are going to be able to start the adoption process next year. Our first paycheck is always the tightest! If I make it the first 15 days then I should be good. We can do it!

Homeschooling Momma to DD 8 years old, DS 7 years old, DS born 03/11 by adoptionheart-1.gif , waiting for DD born 07/10 and two furry labs. Wife to my wonderful husband of 12 years.
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#80 of 1358 Old 09-01-2007, 02:53 AM
 
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Congrats on your adoption plans!!!
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#81 of 1358 Old 09-01-2007, 03:40 AM
 
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Is there any way you could better set yourself up for success today?

My biggest thing is take out pizza! If I take a look at my credit card bills from the past year sadly it's mostly pizaa!
One of my big things is padding the shopping cart... I start with my list and then think, "Gee, what else shall I get while I'm here?" and it adds up quickly! Especially if I decide that I need a little snack, or to buy lunch, or a juice, or a latte. I can easily spend $15-20 picking up the $3 item that i actually needed to begin with!

Drugstore.com shopping is another one! For example, right now I'm out of borage seed oil. I could order it from D.com (where my credit card info is conveniently stored) and I KNOW that I would round the order up so that I could get free shipping. So then I wind up with $50 worth of stuff, only a portion of which I actually needed right that minute. I fall into that trap with Amazon orders too.

I'm trying to really strategize about 1) what I need and how soon I really need it and 2) what is the least expensive place/format to get it in. I just discovered that I can get twice as much stevia if I get a bottle of the powder instead of the ready-to-use paper packets.
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#82 of 1358 Old 09-01-2007, 04:15 AM
 
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Well, The struggles begin! I have shut down my Diaperswappers window twice already!! AHH..At least I have shut it down and not bought anything!! I am off to study..I am beginning to work towards my Lactation Educators certificate, so that will hopefully distract me for a while
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#83 of 1358 Old 09-01-2007, 06:02 AM
 
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Well today is the first day. I have the $200 saved from this last week's leftovers that I already reported. I plan to save all the money I make this weekend too. So for tonight I had $95.75 more.

Day 1: $295.75 saved
I'll report any spending today later.
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#84 of 1358 Old 09-01-2007, 11:21 AM
 
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I ended last month by making a space for all of my bills to be filed, including the cc statements, so that I can begin to make a realistic budget. While looking over the statements, I realized that most of what I buy is food while out working. I drive from job to job and pick up stuff on the way. Horrifying! So, I bought an insulated lunchbox (clearance $2.00) and went to the store and purchased food that is packable for everyone. Last night was the first time that partner & I went to the store and didn't argue about the grocery bill! Amazing! Huge advantage seems to be going after our Friday dinner out night; kids are full and don't put so much crap in the cart and there was no one there! September is going to go well. DS is actually happy packing lunch, especially when he saw what the school is passing off as food!

Money is security...not things...I am happy with the time I have at home...they want me, not more things...no target or landsend.com...
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#85 of 1358 Old 09-01-2007, 11:45 AM
 
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I'm baby-stepping my way through this challenge, so my goal today is to spend nothing. Our big trip out will be to a larger city library to get cards. The town where I live is really small and the library is terrible. Luckily there is a large city just to the south of us where we are eligible for cards. Best thing: they don't charge late fees for their items! My biggest weakness with returning things is the late charges, so that's really good for me.

If I spend nothing today, that will add $36 into my budget for the future. I'm planning a big shopping trip on Monday, so I need to save up for it this weekend.

My strategy for Monday is to take cash to the store and leave all credit/debit cards at home.
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#86 of 1358 Old 09-01-2007, 11:54 AM
 
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Are all of you tracking but no-spending and saving?? Or just no spending? Since one of my goals is to increase my savings, I was thinking of tracking that also..
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#87 of 1358 Old 09-01-2007, 11:59 AM
 
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Okay can I come here to vent scream yell or whatever.

In the month of August my cuisnart grind and brew the grind function stopped working. I love my coffee maker its one of my few indulgences. Same day my blender cracked. It looks like I need to just buy a new one. Its 20 years old. My dryer died two days ago. Not only did it die it took 1/2 a load of the babies clothes. They caught fire and burned. The dryer was not fixable. I bought the parts before dh took it apart and to return the parts we have to pay 20% restocking fee, sigh. So we had to buy a new dryer, which I was not in the market for. Dh wanted to buy a $20 used one but I am not willing to take the chance with it burning a load of clothes. Besides I do not think its bad that we have had 2 dryers in 18 years and the first one was used. So anyway I am really trying to get my house decluttered. I am neat freak but we just had a year from Hell and one of the things we did not do is throw things out. I try to do it every 6 months. Okay my point is, the vacuum cleaner died. Dh worked and worked on it. I have all carpet. I have no money for a new one. I cannot live without a vacuum cleaner. Value Village is having a 50% off sale on Monday so maybe I can find one there.

Heidi
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#88 of 1358 Old 09-01-2007, 12:06 PM
 
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Heidi, that is a lot of stuff that died on you at once . I can't imagine how frustrated you are right now!

mumkenna&lucas, you can track spending, saving, whatever works for you. I think we all do it a bit different according to our goals.

I will have spent about $22 of my allotted dipe money today, found some deals on dipes to try. I'm going to wait until I get these and see what we like before I buy more.

Baking mama to dd (7.5), ds (6), ds (3.5) and someone new in April
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#89 of 1358 Old 09-01-2007, 12:48 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mum4boys View Post
In the month of August my cuisnart grind and brew the grind function stopped working. I love my coffee maker its one of my few indulgences.
Our Cuisinart grind & brew stopped grinding too! Weird! Don't lose heart, though. We ground our beans with the little electric grinder for about a week and then found that the grind function was working again. So maybe it just needed a vacation... It might not last, but was a nice reprieve.

Sorry about your mass appliance death. Things like that always seem to happen just when you think you have it all figured out.
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#90 of 1358 Old 09-01-2007, 12:57 PM
 
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Oh I forgot to add my little mini blender thing died too. That one cost me $1.00 at the dollar store and I used it almost daily for 3-years. I would make mock lattes with it and whip the boys' hot chocolate.

SIGH, this too shall pass right?

I keep on checking the grinding option to see if its working not such luck. So I do have a little grinder every night I grind my beans and then set it up.

Heidi
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