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Viewing the 'no spend' Category

Electric Bill Went Up and Odds N Ends

July 29th, 2008 at 02:22 pm

Booo! The electric bill went up. $94.97! Still under budget, but I'm not too happy with the amount. I got the amount online, but I'm waiting for my paper statement to see what the usage was. With the rates going up, its hard to tell if that bill is really all that out of line.

I've been home all day with a migrane. So its been a no spender. All the things on my to do list went out the window. Oh well.

Today, I've set the AC at 78, but it hasn't kicked on in hours. I've kept the window shades drawn and thats helped. I am utilizing a fan in the living room. A bit before going to bed, I'll lower the temp a little more and use my bedroom fan to keep things cool.

I get paid tomorrow and I've worked out a zero based budget for this pay period. My goals are to stay within the budgeted amounts for entertainment spending ($39.75), groceries ($50.00), gas ($60.00) and cat expenses ($31). I'll hold myself accountable here because I really need to get back on track with this kind of spending.

I've also premade food for work tomorrow. Cheerios and milk for breakfast. Salad with chicken for lunch. Popcorn as a snack. I've made a tentative meal plan for the rest of the week.

Wednesday Dinner: Chicken and baked fries
Thursday Lunch: Meatloaf muffin and pasta salad
Thursday Dinner: Sloppy joe over pasta
Friday Lunch: Salad with chicken
Friday Dinner: Turkey BLT

Another No Spender

July 16th, 2008 at 06:52 pm

Today was another no spender. Brought food to work, ate dinner at home. I picked up a few movies from the library. I'm working my way through the TV show Angel.

I've applied at a well-known shipping company for a part-time job, but have yet to hear from them. And on the roommate front, I'm still searching. I'm planning to put an ad back on Craigslist. But not until after the weekend, when I do some deep cleaning Smile

Getting back on track... again

July 15th, 2008 at 06:08 pm

Today was a no spender. Boy, has it been a LONG time Smile Packed breakfast & lunch for work. Ate dinner at home, buffalo shake n bake chicken, which was YUMMY!

Took a walk with a friend at the park. One hour, approximately 3.5 miles. It was pretty nice out, but hot.

I've already packed food for breakfast/lunch tomorrow. I'm hoping for another no spender.

I am planning that sometime this week, I need to get kitty litter, gas and groceries, but I'm hoping to wait til the weekend.

I think the key to getting back on track with spending, just like my diet, is planning Smile

Busy Day, but no $ Spent

May 17th, 2008 at 05:12 pm

Yep, today was a no spender. I haven't had one in quite a while. Today my nephew came over to play with the kitten and we watched The Bee Movie (borrowed from the library). Then I drove him to his Little League game, where I hung out with my mom.

Afterwards, my nephew went with my mom & I went to the park for a 2.6 mile walk. It felt great.

After that, I stopped back at my parent's house, because I promised my nephew I'd play Wii with him. Spent an hour doing that while my mom ran a few errands. (My sister, who is my nephew's mom, was at work today).

After that, I came home, got a shower, make myself meatloaf muffins, baked fries and a tomato salad.

Now I'm cleaning up and organizing and watching tv. Tomorrow will be more cleaning and laundry, with a walk at a different park. I will be spending for gas, though.

I have several outings planned for this upcoming week, but I'm trying to keep my entertainment spending low. We'll see how that goes.

Tuesday, my work group is going out to dinner with a peer from a site in a different state. He doesn't know anyone here, so we're trying to keep him company in his off time. I'm hoping I can keep my dinner bill under $10.00.

Wednesday, a group of coworkers from my old department are heading out to a local pub. We have reservations for the upstairs deck and we plan to enjoy cheap drinks, dinner, and good company. I'm hoping to keep my bill under $15.00

Thursday night, I'm meeting my sister and some of her friends at a different pub. This night could probably be accomplished for under $15.00.

Other than those outings, my entertainment will have to be free. I'm planning on taking food to work, and entertaining myself at home or at one of the great parks around my house.

No spenders 2 days in a row (long)

May 6th, 2008 at 09:53 am

Yesterday & today are/were no spenders due to being sick. I had to leave work early yesterday.

This morning, I did run to Walmart (5 mins from my house) to return a Redbox movie that I had meant to return yesterday. And I returned a shirt and pair of pants that I had bought a few weeks ago. $26.00 credit back to my account.

For the rest of the day, I'll be lying around. I tried some food, but its not sitting too well. I REALLY have to go back to work tomorrow, so I'm going to take things VERY easy.

I have all the windows/doors open in the house. Two days ago, it was back into the low 60s, now its in the mid 70s. I'm enjoying the weather tho.

As for spending, I now have the two days of no spending. But I did waste some food. I packed a sandwich, salad and milk for breakfast/lunch at work yesterday and I left it there. The milk will be salvagable since it was in the fridge, but not the sandwich/salad.

In other news, I sent an additional $65.53 to the student loan. I've been slacking lately because of all my clothes spending. I pretty much got myself a whole new wardrobe. And it was worth every penny Smile

For the month of May, my focus is on my grocery spending. I joined the challange over at Krystal's blog over at Give Me Back My Five Bucks.

My budget is $50.00 per every pay period ($100.00 per month). I've spent $22.60, leaving $27.40 until the 15th. Definately doable since I will only need some veggies, lunch meat and soda between now & then. I'll keep updating on how I do.

Snapshot of my spending this month

March 16th, 2008 at 05:48 pm

I track every penny spent and have been doing so since January 2007. I was looking at my March spending and thought I'd share. Its been a really conservative month, except for groceries. I've gone a little overboard, but mostly I was stocking up on some REALLY great deals. Like whole-wheat pasta for 67 cents. You really can't beat that!

I've been lucky at having lots of free entertainment with friends and family. And yesterday I even got to enjoy some AWESOME time outside thanks to some nice weather. Most months aren't like this.

March 1
Cell phone $38.61
Student Loan $767.05
Groceries $20.16
Gifts $33.48

March 2

March 3
Groceries $21.29

March 4
Car Repairs $338.84

March 5
Groceries $11.99
Library Fine $1.25
Drinks out $10.00

March 6
Gas $46.24

March 7
Groceries $13.82

March 8

March 9

March 10
Groceries $3.84

March 11

March 12

March 13

March 14
groceries $32.48

March 15

March 16

Another no spender

March 13th, 2008 at 06:34 pm

Today was a no spender. I packed breakfast & lunch again -- its actually starting to get a little boring saying that Smile

I had a busy day at work. I did get a freebie bottle of water though.

Tomorrow, I am hoping to leave work a little early & go for a nice long walk at a park. Its been warm in the sun the last few days. So maybe it won't be too cold to do that.

I plan on reigning in my eating out & entertainment spending this pay period. I have some stuff I want to do around the house & I'll be taking funds from those catagories to do that.

We'll see how it goes. As we say at work, Everything's subject to change Smile

Weekly Meal Plan & Weekend spending

March 9th, 2008 at 02:09 pm

First, about weekend spending. There was none! I vegged Friday night after a long work week. I did pop back out around 9pm to go to the grocery store. I didn't want to have to deal with the Saturday morning crowds.

Yesterday & this morning was hanging out with the nephew. This afternoon has been all about cleaning and watching Agatha Christie's Miss Marple. And recovering from the Nephew's visit Smile

I have gotten a LOT accomplished. Its amazing how changing your sheets & dusting and vacuuming the house can change things Smile

As for the upcoming week, I drop my car back to the repair place for work tomorrow. The window motor was fixed and the window will go up & down if you use the passanger controls. But they do not work from the driver side controls. I'm hoping its an easy fix that would require no extra charges. But if its the driver side controls that have the issue, I'll have to decide if I want to have it fixed (for a cost) or leave as is for now.

I'm trying not to spend until payday on Friday. I have a full tank of gas and tons of groceries. So unless some entertainment spending comes up, all of the extra funds in those 3 catagories can go to the Student loan as of Friday.

In an effort to keep up with eating at home & my lunch challange, I've made a meal plan for the week.

I have a desk drawer of oatmeal, crackers, granola bars and microwave popcorn.

Breakfast: oatmeal & pears
Lunch: Salad, cheese sandwich
Dinner: Pasta, baked potato

Breakfast:Cheerios with milk, hard boiled egg
Lunch: Pears, large salad
Dinner: Meatloaf muffin, baked fries, green beans

Breakfast: Oatmeal, hard boiled egg
Lunch: Cheese sandwich, salad
Dinner: Sloppy joe over egg noodles, green beans

Breakfast: Cheerios with milk
Lunch: PB&J sandwich, pasta salad
Dinner: Pasta w/ sauce; salad

Breakfast: Oatmeal, fruit cocktail
Lunch: Pasta salad, cheese sandwich
Dinner: Turkey BLT; baked fries; salad

Breakfast: Cheerios, fruit cocktail
Lunch: Large salad with penne in it
Dinner: London briol, leftover baked fries; peas

As you can see, I can never get enough of salad, be it just cucumbers & tomatoes or a big salad with lettuce, cucumber, tomato, peppers, carrots, eggs, cheese & pepperoni. I've always been this way Smile

Fun with the nephew

March 8th, 2008 at 05:19 pm

Todays a no spender. My nephew came over around 1pm. He's 7. We've been taking advantage of the rainy weather. We've played video games, go fish, had play karate fights, and watched a kids movie (free on cable). We even took advantage of a break in the storms to walk to the beginning of the neighborhood to get the mail.

Lots of fun and no spending. We had drinks, snacks, lunch & dinner all at home. Lots of fun.

AND until around 8pm tonight, the heat was off. I even had the windows open for about an hour earlier. Fresh air is SO nice!

No Spender

March 6th, 2008 at 10:09 am

Todays a no spender. I sucessfully packed breakfast & lunch today. I'll be having dinner at home as well. I plan on organizing some recipes while watching last night's Big Brother & tonight's LOST. My goal is to go to bed early, since I was out late last night.

Last night's spending was $10.00 exactly. I LOVE the Pub, its so Cheap! There was a band, loud & not that great, but we had a great time.

Frugal, Relaxed Weekend

March 2nd, 2008 at 08:42 am

Yesterday I went to the bank, did some grocery shopping, paid some bills. Then last night, I went over a friends house. They provided dinner & a movie. I only had to show up. VERY nice.

Today, I'm doing house stuff, laundry, cleaning,ect. My mom & nephew are stopping by for a visit, maybe we'll watch a library movie. I have Meet the Robinsons. All in all, today will be a no spender.

New Student Loan Balance & March Thoughts

February 28th, 2008 at 07:29 pm

My private student loan is down to $4,013.09 with another $542.05 on its way now! I am chugging along with this thing. March will be a challanging month. My budget is SUPER tight.

I have an expected large expense in the form of a car repair. I'll get a diagnosis & estimate on Tuesday, when I take the car in.

I also have several non-regular expenses to deal with this month. I am hoping to cashflow as much as possible.

-I have a bigger than usual electric bill. I budget $120/mo and its $132 and change. I have reallocated funds from other household budget catagories to cover the overage

-I need to take my Advanced Defensive driving class ($27.00 fee) to ensure my car insurance rate at the lower amount. This will be be good for 3 years.

-I have a broken bifold door on my pantry and I really want to replace it. If its within the budget at all, I'd like to replace it this month. Estimated cost $40-45

I am also working with a slightly lowered grocery budget ($40.00 from 3/1 to 3/15) since I ridiculously splurged at Walmart on Monday and stocked up on LOTS of things. My goal is to buy only veggies and a few small items until the 15th.

At least yesterday & today were both No Spenders. Tomorrow will be too. I'm hoping to keep Saturday & Sunday as frugal as possible, but plans are up in the air and I don't know what my expenses may or may not be.

I also have an unexpected hiccup in the February-March Lunch challange, which I'll go into detail about later.

Putting the car into the shop

February 28th, 2008 at 09:42 am

My car, a 2002 Hyundai Sonata has been making a squealing noise for a while. Mostly when it starts up after being cold for awhile. Its likely a fan belt, but I've been putting off the repair.

Well, the noise has gotten worse. To the point of being embarrassing. At least the car is still running perfectly. So I made an appointment for next Tuesday to have it looked at. Hopefully, it won't be a big expense, but I do have funds in my car repairs savings.

As for today's Lunch. I'm right on track.
Breakfast: Hard boiled egg, all bran crackers
Snack: Granola bar
Lunch: Turkey wrap with lettuce, tomato, red peppers & light mayo, plus a salad with light italian dressing.

I brought a soda from home and have had several bottles of water, all refilled from the free filtered water at work.

Tonight will be dinner at home, so today will be a no spender.

Also, I got my electric/gas bill, its 132. 21. Thats about 12.21 over my budgeted amount for electric/gas. Oh well, time to revamp the budget since prices are going up. I know its certainly not my usage thats increasing. I'll be able to pull the extra funds from other household accounts. I'll be fine.

Tomorrow is payday and I already have a budget in place for the funds. I plan on being ultra frugal for the month of March. I'd like to cashflow as much of the car repairs as possible, although it probably won't be much. We'll see how it goes.