March No-Spend Challenge ~ The finish line is in sight...almost there! - Page 5 - Mothering Forums
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Frugality & Finances > March No-Spend Challenge ~ The finish line is in sight...almost there!
becoming's Avatar becoming 03:03 PM 03-03-2008
I'm in!

GOALS:
1. $600 or less on grocery/household expenses
2. $300 or less on spring wardrobes
3. $1000 to savings
4. 25 suppers at home
5. 25 brown bag days (bringing lunch to work)
6. 10 no-spend days

3/1 - $19.01 (lunch out), $193.57 (groceries/household)
3/2 -

xekomaya's Avatar xekomaya 03:03 PM 03-03-2008
I'm a little late posting my intro. I joined last month in the middle of a mini-crisis and motivation from this thread helped us keep our spending in check. I'm happy to report we pulled through with flying colors. As long as we run a tight ship this month, we'll be back on track, and with any luck my car will sell so we can pay off our tax bill & get our emergency fund back.

DH and I are also expecting our first in April, so any extra money we can find in the budget will be great as I'm sure there will be more spending/takeout etc. happening after the baby arrives and I want to be prepared.

I'm only going to report groceries and unnecessary spending
Goals:
Groceries = $250
Unnecessary < $10

1:
2:
EnglishRose's Avatar EnglishRose 03:20 PM 03-03-2008
1. Please introduce yourself and tell us anything you think it would help us to know about yourself.

My name is Elizabeth. I am the mumma of 8 children (blended family)

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

My husband worked as the accountant for a small real estate company that went out of business last month. We have some savings, and I am starting a part-time job next week (in the dining hall of my children's school), but we really have to be frugal.

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 am doing kathirynne's "Frugal Meal Planning" like it's my second religion.

We're planning a garden this year. Even if all we grow are tomatoes and spinach, it will be something.

I am also being more dillegent about mending and repurposing clothing (even to hand down to the next size child) instead of throwing out and buying more when things get ripped or stained.

We've all been using "alternative transportation methods" recently; the only time we're in a car is to go to church on Sundays.

We're turning the thermostat down to 50 at night (and when no one is home), and 65 during the day.
my2girlz's Avatar my2girlz 03:37 PM 03-03-2008
March 1~
March 2~
March 3~$4.xx for some groceries

2/10 no spend days
$4.xx/$400 grocery budget
0/2 gas fill ups
0/$30 bday gifts
0/$25 eating out
greeny's Avatar greeny 03:51 PM 03-03-2008
I'm new to this thread. Heck, I'm new to this whole forum! But I really need to spend less.

Today I spent money, BUT (but, but, but) it was at the thrift store, where I got a whole huge bag of kids' clothes and a leather jacket for me, all for less than $20.

Okay, but that's not the point of this thread, is it?

My goal is to see how little I can spend this month. Dh and I really want to get our finances in order. We have no credit card debt. Our "only" debt is student loans and mortgage, and we'd like to pay off the student loans asap. We also really want to build up our savings. Spending less will be key, obviously.
BrooklynDoula's Avatar BrooklynDoula 04:37 PM 03-03-2008
March 1: Farmers market (29.50), $3 toy for son, $35 books for work
March 2: $11 bagels, fruit
March 3: $93 co-op, $23 csa order, $2 kid treat


157/600 food budget (grocery, eating out)
5/100 kid budget (homeschool, clothes, trips, gifts, holidays, etc)
0/100 dh & I fun money
35/200 business/household (this month it will include a gift for my dad, a couple books I need to buy, supplies of dh's studio, etc)
0/1300 to cc
pay taxes!
0/300 - car repair? Not sure what it will cost, lets hope less!
0/45 metro/gas
0/45 laundry
0/10

= no spend on anything
= spent within budget (and only on needed things)
= blew it
xekomaya's Avatar xekomaya 04:44 PM 03-03-2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by greeny View Post
I'm new to this thread. Heck, I'm new to this whole forum! But I really need to spend less.
Welcome! You're in the right place!
*andiflipping*'s Avatar *andiflipping* 06:58 PM 03-03-2008
March 1st.. no spend and no drive
March 2nd.. spent $10.50 on city garbage bags/stickers...budgeted for
March 3rd... $77.76 groceries budgeted
$33.35 gas budgeted




Goals

20 no spend or spend within budget days

$300 groceries
$300 gas (Dh works far from home)
Try to drive a lot less.


Key
true no spend
spend within budget
spend outside budget


__________________
liangel's Avatar liangel 07:16 PM 03-03-2008
Not sure what happened, but my report for the day is below.
liangel's Avatar liangel 07:16 PM 03-03-2008
My key:

:= groceries
= gas
= no spend
= spending other than gas or groceries

3/1-: $174.55 groceries,
---- $67.53 (Amazon for ER Season 8, High School Musical 1&2)
3/2-
3/3-
katheek77's Avatar katheek77 07:21 PM 03-03-2008
Forgot to add to my post...my mileage last month was 256, and that included running around on 3/1.

I'd like to keep mileage below 250 again this month. Will add that to my list of goals.
Aubergine68's Avatar Aubergine68 07:39 PM 03-03-2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by Crunchy*VT*Mom View Post
I had that same thought! I read about how she organized her kids' clothes in "Tightwad Gazette" and I'm going to start a chart like she made.
How did she do that? Is there a link to that article or do I have to find a back issue in paper somewhere?

Looking for all the tricks I can find... I like the Tightwad Gazette stuff, but I've never directly read it, just references to it.
monkey's mom's Avatar monkey's mom 07:58 PM 03-03-2008
3/1: Flowers donated to town $41.99
3/2: Flowers donated to ME $15.74
3/3:

Planted onions and salvaged some kale and cabbage plants. Harvested compost and turned the garden. Wonderful no-spend day!!


Groceries /$550
Gas /$100
Gardening $15.74/$100

My key:

No spend
Budget spend
Over spend
mumkenna&lucas's Avatar mumkenna&lucas 08:57 PM 03-03-2008
So I have a new short term goal I really want something on another boards fsot, and I am going to not spend anything until Sunday, so I can justify purchasing it hey hopefully I will have a bunch of no spends before Sunday

3/1
3/2
3/3

March Spending Goals:
No Spend days: 3/25
No etsy/DS/ebay: 3/27
Non-necessary Spending: <200

Exceptions that I won't count against me
A few items for dd and ds's easter baskets
Kids pictures taken
1 new to me pair of jeans
scrapadoozer's Avatar scrapadoozer 08:59 PM 03-03-2008
3/1
3/2 Poodle toy & game for dd @ Goodwill $2.00
3/3

Unnecessary spending: $2.00
No spend days: 2/14
PrettyBird's Avatar PrettyBird 09:05 PM 03-03-2008
3/1:
3/2:
3/3:

Well, I did put $100 in DD's 529 plan but I am not counting that as "spending" since it is planned investing. I am not counting Roth IRA contributions either, they are just automatic deposits every payday.

No spend!
Spent within budget
Unplanned, but necessary expense
: Blew it
MissLotus's Avatar MissLotus 09:08 PM 03-03-2008
3/1: Train $10.75/ subway $4/ gift $8.50/ lunch $6.50
3/2: matinee movie $6.50/ snacks (bought at store, not at movie theater ) $3.50/ $67.26 groceries/ Gained: $8.76 from returning stuff to Home Depot
3/3: spent nothing

Spending totals:
Groceries/Household/Pet supplies: $67.26
Eating out, including snacks: $10
Miscellaneous: $29.75
ladyinred's Avatar ladyinred 09:54 PM 03-03-2008
My Key:
- No spend
- Spend within budget
- Neccessary but unbudgeted
: - Unneccessary and unbudgeted

01/03 - spent $40.00 on paint for office (at 40% off and have been planning this one and only CC purchase this month for a long time) $26.00 on a really nice meal out with Dbf, came out of last week's tutoring money and gift certificate.
02/03 - snow bound
03/03 - primed my office, nearly bought putty to fill holes in walls then found out I could use toothpaste

Goals For March:
*20 no spend days (Feb I had 17)
*Pay off CC
*Put $15 from each week of tutoring in saving envelope
*Plan out meals for each week to reduce grocery spending
*File taxes and put tax return on provincial student loan

Budget for March:
Income - around $900.00
- $560.00 to dbf for April bills
- $45.00 to savings
- $200.00 to CC (about half coming from what's still in the bank)
- around $60.00 spending money
- $60.00 to student loan
- $40.00 paint (on CC)
josybear's Avatar josybear 10:36 PM 03-03-2008
march 1: $40- groceries, 15$- gift for a friend
march 2: nothing at all
march 3: sent dh to get applesauce and rice crackers for ds1 - he came home with 10$ in chocolate bars.

tomorrow i'm getting some yarn, perusing a thrift store and going to a health food store. i'm going to control myself. yes i am.

the budget:
100$/ week groceries/ transportation/ outings
100$/ month discretionary fund (clothes, gifts, etc)

$50 remaining for the week,
$85 remaining for the month.[/QUOTE]
josybear's Avatar josybear 10:38 PM 03-03-2008
oops, double post.
Neva's Avatar Neva 10:40 PM 03-03-2008
3/1 : Spend $ on liquor and raffle tickets at a charity event. At least it went to a good cause
3/2 We to a indoor playgym. Had hotdogs.
3/3 grocery shopping

Key
No Spend Day!
Necessary and Budgetted
Necessary Unbudgetted
Unnecessary and Unbudgetted

: Brought a Bagged Lunch
: Get Take-Out for Lunch

Goals
0/21
0/15 :
0/1 online shopping day
Car Savings $150/$300
Grocery Budget $92.65/$400
Unnecessary Spending $37.50
Bus Fare $3.75
Scribe's Avatar Scribe 10:42 PM 03-03-2008
March 1: thrifting and coffee, in budget
March 2: no spending
March 3: gift for a friend, postage, clothes, all in budget; paid $700 on CCs

MY GOALS FOR MARCH:
1. No new CC spending.
2. Pay at least $700 towards CCs.--done!
3. Stay on budget.

Crunchy*VT*Mom's Avatar Crunchy*VT*Mom 10:48 PM 03-03-2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aubergine68 View Post
How did she do that? Is there a link to that article or do I have to find a back issue in paper somewhere?
I have a copy of her book checked out from the local library. The article is in there.
JennaW's Avatar JennaW 10:49 PM 03-03-2008
3/1- $6400 for new car, $47.00 for lunch, 11.40 for dinner, $47.93 gas
3/2- $259.98 for new car detail, $69.01 REI for BOB stroller, $24.23 Costco for laundry soap, $92.19 for groceries at Trader Joe's
3/3- DH needed gas, $50.51. I spent nothing but I did drive my car to see my Mom and a friend.

Totals:

New Car $6659.98/$6000
Groceries $92.19/$350
Eat Out $58.40/$0
Baby $69.01/$0
Household $24.23/$0
Gas $97.94/$100

I felt good about today. DH spent money that was necessary and ultimately he will be reimbursed for (he gets reimbursed for work driving). I spent nothing which felt really good after a weekend of marathon spending.
Crunchy*VT*Mom's Avatar Crunchy*VT*Mom 10:51 PM 03-03-2008
01..
02..
03..

Goals:
3/20 No Spend Days
0/10 Let the Car Rest Days
3/31 Fast-Food-Free Days
janerose's Avatar janerose 11:10 PM 03-03-2008
1. Please introduce yourself and tell us anything you think it would help us to know about yourself.


I'm Holly. Mama to two DDs -- 3 1/2 yrs & 13 mo. We are a low income family by choice. DH has spent most of the past 3 years in school & still has 2 more to go to get his MS. I work about 12 hrs a month at our local WIC office as a BF Peer Counselor & am working on getting my MT certification.

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

We need to start making major payments on our debt -- cc & school loans. Luckily we own our car & home. The approximatly $85K we owe is what's keeping us from serious financial freedom. We are both impulse spenders & have a hard time saying "no" to something once we decide we want it. We also eat out *way* too much!

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?

~ Restart the envelope system for our variable expenses. Based on what I know we have on hand a realistic budget for the month is:
gas - $240
entertainment - $40
groceries/household/toiletries - $80**
cats - $30
gifts/cards - $20
DH allowance - $40
my allowance - $40

**This is freakishly low because I'm also doing the pantry challenge -- we have a very well stocked pantry at the moment, plus we get WIC to help with milk, eggs, $5/mo fruits & veggies, cheese, cereal, etc. And I just did a stock up from Frontier on all our regular toiletry/household stuff with part of our tax return. For the most part all I'll by are fresh fruits & veggies.

~ Recommitting myself to cloth diapers & wipes. I'm NOT buying more once this batch of sposies runs out! At the moment I'm transitioning by going back to 100% cloth for daytimes & sposies for bedtime & long car trips only.

~ Set a goal that everytime I have an "extra" $100 set aside from not spending or selling something we don't need to mail an extra cc payment.

~ Use this thread to hold myself accountable for "our" spending. I say "our" because the MAJORITY of $$$ we spend is spent by me.
annethcz's Avatar annethcz 11:26 PM 03-03-2008
Just budgeted spending today.

March 1: budgeted spending: $129.89 household/misc., $217.63 grocery store, $209 Let's Dish (groceries)
March 2: no spend
March 3: budgeted spending: $15 school milk/juice for snack time (groceries), paid kids' monthly bowling league fees

My goals for March:
1/15 true no-spend days
3/31 no credit card use
0/5 no drive days
1/10 drive more than 50 miles in a day
$441.63/$600 groceries
$129.89/$300 household/misc.
$0/300 gas
$0/200 eating out/take out/entertainment
120/1000 minutes on the treadmill
annethcz's Avatar annethcz 11:32 PM 03-03-2008
Quote:

tomorrow i'm getting some yarn, perusing a thrift store and going to a health food store. i'm going to control myself. yes i am.
You can do it!!!!
CityChic's Avatar CityChic 11:51 PM 03-03-2008
March 1 - : $8.15 outside the grocery budget
March 2 - : $29 out to brunch with friends.
March 3 - Today I didn't really think about wanting anything. Maybe focusing is already helping!

February:
Total overspending in February $666.45
Total no spend days - 14

Key:
- No Spend/Spending in Budget
: - Not in Budget/Not Necessary
Belleweather's Avatar Belleweather 12:14 AM 03-04-2008
3/1: $11.98 photo prints of kids for my desk at work/Dinner out (counting this as our lunch for the week since it was a cheap burger joint for a friend's birthday)

3/2: : $54.09 Groceries, McDonalds for DS1 & DH, Scones and coffee for breakfast.

3/3 (But Dh bought $9.34 in groceries)

No Spend
Spending within budget
: Drat, I Blew it

No spending for ME! DH went to the grocery store for Basil and came back with brussels sprouts and Honey Tangerines, but no basil. But considering those are both things we'll eat, I'm not going to sweat it too much.

GOALS:
1/16 no spending AT ALL days (not one cent, even if it's budgeted)
Eating limited to Friday supper and one weekend lunch.
No spending on hobbies, finish the projects I have.
>2x week ordering in or vending machine at work.
>$400 on Groceries during the month. ($55.46/$400)
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