Budget Thursday

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Even though I haven’t kept up with blogging, I have definitely kept up with the budget.  It hasn’t been the prettiest, but we are doing pretty well.  My June budget is ready to go!  I will do a full June budget overview tomorrow, but for now I want to tell you how I keep things from busting my budget!

We all have expenses that are irregular.  You know the ones: car tags, taxes, vet bills, co-pays, etc.  These are ones that are hard to budget for because they don’t come up very often.  We had one today: vet bill.  No biggie, just vaccinations and getting heartworm medicine for Bandit.  Here is how I managed to take the dogs to the vet without worrying about the budget:

Every month the dogs have two line items.  One is cash that I pull out each month.  They get $50 a month that goes into their joint envelope.  Sometimes this money doesn’t get spent in a month.  If it doesn’t get spent, it rolls over to the next month.  They currently have $26 in their envelope right now, and the next $50 will get added on June 14th.  This cash is for food, dog biscuits, and any other things I would buy at a pet store.  It almost always goes to food, as we do not buy many extras for the dogs.  Very rarely do I have to refill both dogs’ food in one month.  Usually it is just one or the other.

The next line item is another $50, but this money gets transferred into their joint Capital One 360 savings account.  This money also rolls over (and earns a very tiny bit of interest).  This savings account is for vet bills, medication, vaccinations, etc.  Today when I took the dogs to the vet, they had $297 in their savings account.  Both dogs needed vaccinations (Bandit needed 1 and Rose needed 2).  I also got Bandit a 6 month supply of heartworm prevention medication.  (Rose inherited some from my sister, so she didn’t need a refill).  The total came to $122.00.  I was able to use our debit card to pay for it, and then as soon as I got home, I transferred $122 from their savings account to our checking account.  We only end up using this account about every 6 months for these same types of expenses.  By the time we use it again (in 6 months) we will have almost $500 in there.  We have been lucky that we have not had any recent emergencies or anything major with either dog lately.  We have in the past, but we have always had enough money in their savings account to cover it.

How do you save for those irregular expenses?

What to eat Wednesday

So Meal Plan Monday doesn’t work during the summer.  I like to go grocery shopping during the week, and have landed on Thursdays as my day to go.  Because of that, I now meal plan on Wednesdays.  Today was the best meal planning session I have had in a while:

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Spent my time outside in the beautiful weather while Miss C played in the wading pool.  I think we have a little fish on our hands!  She loved playing in and around the pool.  (That is definitely a trait she gets from her daddy, as I am not a fan of water or swimming at all.)

Anyways, one of the big changes in the past few weeks is my food intake.  I have really been trying to focus on buying ingredients at the store and eating healthier.  I know that I will not be perfect (especially with the Reese’s in my pantry calling my name), but I know that whatever changes I make will be positive.  I have been blessed with a high metabolism and have never had to worry about what I eat.  Unfortunately that has lead me to have very bad eating habits.  I am trying to change those habits, not for my size, but instead for my health.  Because of these changes, I am very aware of planning everything, not just dinners.  I now plan breakfasts, lunches, dinners, and two snacks a day.  I would give myself a C at this point for how it is going.  The first week was fabulous!  This past week has not been going as well.

Without further ado, here is my menu for the week:

Thursday, May 28:
Breakfast: Banana pancakes, eggs, fruit
Lunch: Chicken enchiladas with avacado cream sauce
Dinner: Chicken salad sandwiches, salad
Snacks: 1) toast with peanut butter and bananas, 2) yogurt with cinnamon, granola, flax seeds

Friday, May 29:
Breakfast: Oatmeal, fruit
Lunch: Chicken stir fry with quinoa
Dinner: Creamy corn fettuccine with grilled shrimp, salad
Snacks: 1) fresh fruit, nuts, 2) granola, raw veggies

Saturday, May 30:
Breakfast: Eggs with spinach and cheese, toast with jelly
Lunch: Mac and cheese and hot dogs for the family, big salad for me
Dinner: Tacos
Snacks: 1) yogurt, 2) fresh fruit, nuts

Sunday, May 31:
Breakfast: Oatmeal
Lunch: Cheese quesadillas
Dinner: Grilled meat and veggie packets
Snacks: 1) raw veggies, 2) toast with PB and bananas

Monday, June 1:
Breakfast: Homemade waffles, fresh fruit
Lunch: Grilled teriyaki pork tenderloin, quinoa, salad
Dinner: Leftovers
Snacks: 1) fresh fruit, yogurt, 2) raw veggies

Tuesday, June 2 (My birthday!):
Breakfast: cereal (I love cereal, but I am trying to cut back on it because of the sugar content)
Lunch: Out!  Mexican for this girl!
Dinner: Grilled BBQ pork chops, salad, homemade rolls
Snack: 1) nuts, fresh fruit, 2) cheese and crackers

Wednesday, June 3:
Breakfast: Oatmeal
Lunch: Chicken parmesan meatballs, pasta, homemade tomato sauce, salad
Dinner: Creamy chicken and asparagus pasta
Snacks: 1) fresh fruit, nuts, 2) raw veggies

If I find out that some of these lunches make a lot of food, then we will scrap dinner plans and just have leftovers.  Right now Hubs works 2-10 in the evenings, so it is just Miss C and I for dinner.  I try to make a good, somewhat big meal for lunch, so Hubs gets a homemade meal each day.  This also usually gives us leftovers for the evening.

What are you having this week?

Sweet Summer

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I can’t believe it has been over 2 months since I last blogged.  It wasn’t on purpose, but the last quarter of school was a tough one.  The class I had this year had its ups and downs.  I would come home from work absolutely exhausted.  Near the end, there was a lot of other stress with things out of my control.  (Possibility of losing good teachers due to budget cuts.)  In the past two months not much has changed around here.

I am now on summer break and am bound and determined to make this summer a productive one!  I have already gotten a lot done around the house, and have been doing my best to stay on top of regular chores (laundry, picking up, etc.)  I have so many things I want to get done, and I have made mini to-do lists to help keep me on top of everything.

One of the biggest things that has happened in the past two months is that we have paid off our first student loan!  We are now snowballing our payment to the next student loan, which should be killed this fall!  We haven’t been able to put all of our extra money into our debt snowball, but it’s for good reason.  My car is currently 13 years old.  Besides regular maintenance and upkeep, we have never really had to put too much money into it.  Unfortunately we are getting close to the end with it.  My catalytic converter has caused my check engine to go on twice.  It hasn’t caused any problems yet, and the people at Midas said not to worry about it until I start to notice “symptoms”.  I haven’t yet, so no biggie at this point.

I did take my car in for a routine oil change and tire rotation today.  They said I would need new tires soon.  The tires they quoted were almost $500 (for all 4).  That is getting to the point of too much money to put into this car.  We have known for a while that I was going to need a replacement car sooner rather than later.  Once we paid off Hubs’ car, we have been putting $450 aside each month for a down payment on a vehicle for me.  I am hoping to nurse my car through the summer, but would definitely need something new before fall/winter.  We live in an area that typically gets snow and ice in the colder months.  I would not want to risk bald tires come winter.  I hate the thought of taking on new debt, but I do think it’s time for a new (to me) vehicle soon.  My car is a compact car, and I am starting to get to the point of not feeling safe driving around with Miss C in it.  It is very uncomfortable for even the three of us to sit in.  We need something bigger.  If we can hold off until the end of August to buy a vehicle, we will have around $4,000 for a down payment.  With that down payment, we should be able to keep our payment very similar to what we are putting aside each month.  Again, I hate adding new debt, but I do feel some pressure to have a decent car since I am hauling around the munchkin in it quite often.  I guess we will just wait and see when the time comes.

Now that I am done with my school year, I hope to get back to blogging on a regular basis.

Image courtesy of samarttiw at freedigitalphotos.net

Monday Menu Plan

Before I get started on the menu plan for today, let me share with you a few things I have learned in the past couple of days:

*Miss C has a crazy fear of bees.  One flew by her yesterday while we were playing, and it sent her into hysterics!  It did not sting her, just flew by.  Poor girl was traumatized for the rest of the time and wouldn’t go more than a foot away from me.  She actually clung to me the majority of the time we stayed out.

*Rose is not a hunting dog.  (Nor is Bandit, but we already knew that).  In the past few months a family of bunnies have built their home in our fenced in backyard.  I am pretty sure Rose is oblivious to this fact.  There was a hole a while back, but I cleared it out in hopes that the bunny would not come back.  I checked it yesterday and sure enough it was full of bunny hair and there was movement in there.  I don’t know how long until Rose finds them, but I am going to guess they have been hiding for a while.

*Making a meal for the crock pot ahead of time is pretty useless if you forget to tell the adult in charge at home when to put it out and start it.  I prepped chicken parmesan this morning, popped it in the fridge, and forgot to leave a note for Hubs to put it in the crock pot and start it.  I did not realize this until 2:30 in the afternoon, which was too late to call and have him start it.  Oh well!  I guess we have dinner prepped for tomorrow night instead!

*Since beginning my journey to a more fit lifestyle, I am constantly amazed at what my body is able to do.  I push hard sometimes and am in awe of the strength that God has given me.  I pushed hard today and broke a personal record.  I ran a 10’03” mile.  My typical pace is around 10’30”, so I shaved almost 30 seconds off my regular mile.  I was *thisclose* to not running tonight, but I knew I had to, and I am glad I did it!

*I seriously have the most supportive and amazing friends and family around.  I already knew this, but this past weekend has been proof that they are the best any girl could ask for!  I know I wouldn’t have been able to reach my goals without them!

And now on to the menu plan…

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Saturday– Chinese food out with my sister’s family

Sunday– Tacos

Monday– Crock Pot Chicken Parmesan Cheese Quesadillas

Tuesday– Crock pot chili Crock pot Chicken Parmesan

Wednesday– Chicken Fajitas

Thursday– Spaghetti

Friday– Homemade Pizza

Since we won’t have the chili this week, I will probably save it for the weekend or sometime next week.  My spring break is next week, so I am hoping to try some cooking/baking things that I don’t get to do because I work full time.  I would love to attempt to make bread from scratch or at least try to use the bread machine that my sister is letting me store borrow while they are packing their house.

This week is definitely a nice and easy week to get me through the last week before spring break.  I am looking forward to possibly grilling soon, but we desperately need a new grill.  (Yes need.  We have had our inexpensive grill for over 5 years and it is about on it’s last leg.  I have it in our budget to start saving for once we get done saving for and purchasing our new lawn mower.)

What is on your menu this week?

Wonderful Weekend

This weekend has been almost perfect!

First and foremost, I DID IT!!

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I ran my first 5K race!  One of my best friends and I ran it together.  I honestly felt like an impostor when I first got there.  There were all these real runners.  They are competitive and ready to run.  I couldn’t believe that I was going to run this race.  Here we are before the race:

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It was pretty chilly at this point… maybe 40 or so.  We were trying to stay warm in the sun, but it wasn’t helping much.  Once we got going, though we warmed up nicely.  There was even a nice breeze on the way to the end that helped cool us down a bit.

I am still somewhat in awe that I actually ran in a race.  You must understand: I have never been a runner in my life.  I still don’t feel like I am a runner.  I still struggle to get up and run in the mornings.  The first mile is still the hardest.  I have to convince myself to get my training done.

When I started my running journey back in October, I started with the Couch to 5k program.  If you aren’t familiar with that, it is a 6 week training program that is for non-runners.  The first week you go out 3 days and you run 90 seconds, walk 60 seconds.  You do this for 20 minutes.  I seriously thought I was going to die that first week.  It was the hardest thing for me to do.  After about the 9 week mark, I ditched the Couch to 5k program and just ran.  I usually set a time or distance goal for the workout and attempt to reach that.  I still do that now, whether I run on my treadmill or outside.

Honestly I couldn’t have done this without the support and love of my friends and family.

I am not sure what my favorite part of Saturday was.  Here is a list of the things that are on the list:

*Running the 5k with my dear friend.

*Beating my personal record for a 5k (33 minutes, 23 seconds).

*Having Hubs and Miss C at the finish line with special homemade signs for me.  (They are the signs in the first picture.)

*Coming home to a scavenger hunt set up by Hubs.  It ended with a beautiful note written by Hubs.  Definitely a big highlight!

*Treating myself to some yummy Mexican food for lunch after the race.

*Going to my sister’s house to help out with some pre-moving chores.

*Watching Miss C play with her beloved cousins.

Overall Saturday was pretty awesome!

Today has been a very productive day.  For how great Saturday was, I did not get much done around the house.  I did manage to make a menu and grocery list for the week.

Today I have been super productive!  I do have to say that the lovely pre-spring weather has definitely been a big motivator!  I have had the windows open and have been as busy as a bee today!

Here is what I have gotten done today:

*Went to the grocery store
*Put away groceries and cleaned the kitchen
*About 4 loads of laundry (wash, dry, fold, and put away)
*Emptied the dishwasher, loaded it, and started it
*Clipped some coupons
*Made lunch and dinner for the family
*Lesson planned fort he entire week
*Played outside with the munchkin for a while
*Picked up my bedroom
*Ran to the grocery store a second time to pick up two things for dinner (that I forgot earlier)
*Cleaned up the dishes and whatnot after dinner

So that is how the weekend is going so far!  I do think that my March is off to a better start than my February!

How was your weekend?

February Wrap-Up

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February has ended, and I am happy to say that I survived.  It was a pretty crummy month overall.  I started out sick with a cold or sinus infection at the beginning of the month.  We suffered a miscarriage in the middle of the month.  And I ended the month sharing a stomach virus with my family.  (Or they shared it with me… Either way it was not fun for anyone.)

With how icky the month was you can imagine how terribly my goals turned out.  Just for fun, let’s take a look at them and see how it went:

Financial

 Save $855 in Capitalone 360 accounts- Ended up putting $1,055.  Now one of the accounts was for the consignment sale which was at the end of the month.  We did end up withdrawing it so we could purchase what we needed.  I am still counting this as a win!
Save an additional $130 for consignment sale (it will be spent before the end of the month)- Did this!  We ended up with $260 for the consignment sale.  We only used $160 of it, so I am already ahead for the next consignment sale in August/September.
Put $100 into emergency savings- Put in $875.  This number is so huge because we got our tax returns.  Even without those, though, we would have gone over and above the $100.
Track spending- Done!  I love my new spreadsheets that I created on Google Docs.  I need to do a bit of tweaking, but I love them!
Create or edit a Google Docs spreadsheet for our budget/tracking expenses- Done!  See above!

Marriage

One date night (we have a gift card to help with dinner expenses, but if we want to do anything else, we will have to figure out where the money will come from)- Negative ghost rider… unless you count going to the doctor’s office together.

Health

Run 50 miles this month- Ha!  Between all the sicknesses and whatnot I ran a grand total of 5 times in February.  This came to 11.33 miles.  Not great at all!
Drink 5 cups of water a day and track it- Nope.  I think I did ok with drinking, but did not track it.
Continue with no pop- Yes!  I did have a Sprite the day we went to the doctor, and I did have some ginger ale while I was so nauseous with my stomach virus.  I am not counting any of those though.  
Finish 30 Days of Yoga series on Youtube (I am on Day 8)- Still on Day 8.
Do strength training exercises 3 times a week- No real exercising happening here.
Cut back on sugar intake- Nope.
Sign up for a 5k with my best friend- Yes!  We run this coming Saturday!  Yikes!
No coffee drinks from the coffee shop on the way to work- I think I get an A-.  I did stop and get 1 during the month.  This is a huge improvement considering I was getting about 2 a week there for a while.

Recreation

Read 1 book this month- You would think with all my sickness I would have read.  You would be wrong.
Blog at least 3 times a week- Yeah, didn’t happen.
Get together with friends- Nope. :(  I was supposed to have coffee with friends before work one day, but it ended up being the Monday I went to the doctor for my miscarriage.

Home

Take boxes to Salvation Army- There is still a box in my closet and one on the kitchen counter.
Get rid of all the cardboard boxes that are taking over our lives- Yes!  Woo-hoo!
Clean the basement- Still a mess!
Scrub out the fridge- Nope.  Still needs to happen.

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So February was a rough month for many reasons.  That is why I have decided to only have one goal for March:

Have a better month than February.

I think I can actually achieve that goal!  Hopefully I will be back to blog more often.  I do miss it quite a bit, although I am not sure there are that many people who still read.

How did your February end up?

Ups and Downs

I guess it is time for me to come out of hiding.  After the week I have had, though, it was nice to snuggle with the family and try to ignore everything going on around me.

There are bad weeks, and then there are weeks that you don’t even have adjectives for.  That would be what this past week was for me.

It all started out a week ago… on Valentine’s Day.  Miss C and I went grocery shopping.  While we were out, I picked up a box of two pregnancy tests.  My period was a week late, so I just wanted to check.  Both tests were positive, which were a bit of a surprise, but a very welcome surprise!  Hubs and I have been “not preventing” pregnancy since our last miscarriage last March, so I was very excited about this news!

I put the positive pregnancy tests in a ziploc bag and wrapped them up as a Valentine’s gift for Hubs.  I thought it would be a cute way to tell him.

He opened the gift when he got home, and all was happy and lovely.

Sunday morning we went to my parents’ house.  My nephew was over there, and we wanted Miss C to have some cousin time.  My sister, brother-in-law, and other nephew came over for lunch.  While we were there, we told them our news (everyone except the young nephews).  I planned to call my brother later in the day, as I knew he would be at church and I wanted to talk to him and not leave a message.  Hubs called his parents and texted his siblings to tell them the news as well.  It was all happy and rainbows for everyone at that time.

We left my parents’ house around 12:30 to get home and get the little missy down for a nap.  I went to the bathroom, and the spotting had already started.  Less than 24 hours after finding out I was pregnant, the bleeding was starting.  Of course I burst into tears and snuggled up with Hubs.  In my heart I knew what was going on, but part of me wanted to believe that I wasn’t miscarrying again (my 3rd time for those keeping track).

I decided I would call my doctor’s office in the morning (as I knew there was nothing that could be done for me at this point on a Sunday), and hopefully they would get me in to see what was going on.

This wasn’t the only part of my weekend that sucked… because at 3:00 in the morning Sunday night/Monday morning, Miss C woke up and threw up all over her crib.  This was our first experience with her throwing up.  She didn’t act like she didn’t feel well, but we knew something was going on.  We gave her a bath, threw her bedding and a menagerie of puke-soaked stuffed animals in the wash.  Then we all proceeded to stay up with the munchkin.  At this point I decided I would not be going to work, even though it was just a day of meetings.

We were up until 7:00 AM, when she finally decided she was tired and wanted to go back to bed.  We were all very excited by this, and the three of us promptly all fell asleep for a nap.

At 9:00 I woke up and went to the bathroom again.  The bleeding was heavier and at that point that I needed a pad.  It was also becoming bright red.  The reality of the situation was still not wanting to sink into my brain.  I called my doctor and left a message for a nurse to call us back.  She finally called us back at 10:00.  They would get me in for an ultrasound and go from there.

My wonderful mother came to our house to watch a sick Miss C while we went to the doctor.  I still showed positive on the pregnancy test, but the ultrasound showed nothing.  There was no sac, no fetal pole, nothing but an empty uterus.  The doctor I saw was not my usual midwife, but I loved her!  She explained that this was probably a chemical pregnancy.  (A chemical pregnancy is one in which the egg is fertilized but one of two things happen: it doesn’t implant, or it implants and just doesn’t grow.  The only proof of pregnancy is the chemical, hcg, that is released from the fertilized egg and causes a positive sign to show up on a pregnancy test.)  She was very optimistic and encouraging, though.  We went ahead and drew some blood to check my levels (progesterone, hcg, etc.).

Two days later I had to go back and have more blood drawn to see if my levels were going up or down.  Unfortunately they were going down.  This meant that for sure there was no pregnancy and no baby.  The bleeding continued for a few more days, and it is finally tapering off.  I go back to the doctor this coming Thursday for another blood draw.  This will check to make sure there is no hormone in my blood at all.  They want to do this because we would like to move forward with testing to see if we can figure out why I have had so many miscarriages.  If everything is clear next week, then we wait another 6 weeks, and I will have a full workup done.  Hopefully we will find some answers.

While all of this was happening, Miss C was still recovering from her stomach virus.  She is still not 100% yet, but today has been much better than the past few days.  Another fun piece of the story is that my mom got the stomach virus on Wednesday.  She was ok in the morning when she came to pick up Miss C, but by the end of the day, my dad had to bring the munchkin to me because my mom felt so bad.  Hubs ended up taking the day off work on Thursday so my mom could recover.  Luckily Mom is back to normal and was able to watch Miss C yesterday.

In the end, I know I have no real control over what happens in my life.  It is all up to God.  He has plans that I do not understand and may never understand.  What I do know is that I am beyond thankful to have the little family that I have now.  Yes, I want to expand our family.  Yes, I feel sad and somewhat bitter whenever I see yet another pregnancy announcement.  Yes, I feel anger when someone complains about a pregnancy symptom.  I would give anything to have another pregnancy.  But I am also over the moon grateful for the one beautiful little munchkin I already have.  I know many women out there who would give absolutely anything to be in my shoes.  I never want to take it for granted.

5 Frugal Things

At least once a week, Katy from The Non-Consumer Advocate makes a list of 5 frugal things that she did.  I liked that idea, so I thought I would give it a try.

1.  I brought leftovers for lunch 4 out of 5 days this week.  One of the days school served taco salad which I really enjoy.  I still had some money in my lunch account, so I had that on Thursday. The other 4 days, though, I brought leftovers!

2.  I spent nothing today at Kohl’s and got a candle holder and hoodie for Miss C.  Since we bought our TV from Kohl’s, I had $30 YestoYou rewards.  The candle holder was originally $49.99, but was on sale for half off.  Here is what it looks like.  It is currently on top of our cabinets in the kitchen.

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The hoodie was originally $16.00, but was on clearance for $3.20.  I guess when you use the rewards you don’t have to pay sales tax for whatever reason.  The total ended up being $28.19.  I still have $1.81 left, but don’t think I need anything at this point.

3.  I actually went to Target and (almost) only bought things on my list.  While I was there, I scanned each item to see if there were any discounts on the Cartwheel app for any of them.  And there was!  There was a 5% discount on some snack mix that Hubs and Miss C really like.  It saved me $0.25.  The hangers that I bought were also on sale and saved me $0.99.  The only thing I bought that wasn’t on my list was a group of Frozen bracelets for Miss C for Valentine’s Day.  They were $1.00 at the Dollar Spot.  I made sure to pay with our cash from our envelopes, so we were good to go!

4.  We had a very frugal lunch today!  We tend to eat the same things over and over for lunch (mac and cheese, grilled cheese, quesadillas, frozen pizza).  Today I thawed out and warmed up some rotisserie chicken that had been in the freezer for a little while.  I also had some potatoes in the pantry that needed used.  We had some mashed potatoes and gravy.  The only “new” item was a bag of corn that I bought at the store yesterday.  Everything else were things we already had on hand!

5.  Instead of buying Miss C new toys to play with outside on these few gorgeous days.  I have been bringing up some old play trucks that belonged to Hubs.  She loves playing with cars and trucks, and she was so excited to have “new” ones!

What frugal things have you done this week?

February

Oh how I love the beginning of a new month!  I just wish I could figure out how to harness this desire of wanting to make it the best month ever and hold onto that desire all month long.  I always start out so strong and then slowly taper off.  This month, though, I am starting off a little sick. :(  Boo!  I woke up with a sore throat, congestion, and just feeling overall yucky I have gone through many tissues today, and it’s a good thing that I just stocked up on them on Friday.  Between Hubs and me, we seem to be going through them so quickly!

I am so lucky that Hubs did let me get a quick nap (or two) today.  It was exactly what I needed to get some energy and feel better!  I also took some Mucinex-D and have been chugging water.  I know those have helped big time too!

I don’t know what the weather is like in your neck of the woods, but it is just gross out.  Yesterday it rained all day long.  Today it has turned into snow, but it is just a coating of snow… no real accumulation.  All I know is that I will NOT be a happy camper if we don’t get a snow day this year!  The 10 day forecast doesn’t show any good chance of accumulating snow.

It has been a pretty low key day today.  Hubs did do some dishes this morning, but besides that, there has not been much else happening.

We are all still in our jammies, just vegging out for the day.  We are currently watching the Puppy Bowl and will start watching the Super Bowl soon.  It has been lovely to just relax and enjoy the day with the family.  Unfortunately I know I will have to do some lesson planning this evening, as I have nothing ready to go for next week.

I was really hoping to get a strong start on my February goals today, but I just haven’t been feeling up to doing much of anything.  I did get one goal completed yesterday (I know I got it done before February actually started, but the timing worked out perfectly).  I broke down and cut apart all the large cardboard boxes we had just hanging out in the guest room.  This included a treadmill box, microwave box, and large tv box.  My parents had taken Miss C to watch her cousin play basketball, so I was able to load up my car and take all the boxes to recycling.   It is so nice to walk by the guest room and not have it overtaken by boxes.

I did also get spreadsheets up and ready to go for our budget.  They took me quite a while to make considering I was starting from scratch, but once I did some research and found a few that had parts I liked, I was able to create them based on what I think will work for us.  I have the budget page with my projected budget and the actual budget, and I also have a tracking page for each month.  I went ahead and made copies for each month of the year.  Now I am excited to use them and see how they work for us.  Actually putting in all the data is always the hardest for me.

Well, I guess I should get ready to watch some football!  The pregame is on, the chili is in the crock pot, and the family is ready to have some fun!

How are you spending your Super Bowl Sunday?

February Goals

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Even though January seemed as though it would last forever, it did finally end!  I am beyond excited about a new month.  January was definitely a tough one… not just at home with my goals, but I had many struggles at work as well.  My stress level was beyond belief for the majority of the month, and I was unable to focus on my goals and achieving them.

Last month I did make some goals that I knew I would meet, just so I didn’t feel as though I was failing with them all.  It helped to know that I would have something positive to post on here, so I think I will do that this month as well.

Financial

 Save $855 in Capitalone 360 accounts
Save an additional $130 for consignment sale (it will be spent before the end of the month)
Put $100 into emergency savings
Track spending
Create or edit a Google Docs spreadsheet for our budget/tracking expenses

Marriage

One date night (we have a gift card to help with dinner expenses, but if we want to do anything else, we will have to figure out where the money will come from)

Health

Run 50 miles this month
Drink 5 cups of water a day and track it
Continue with no pop
Finish 30 Days of Yoga series on Youtube (I am on Day 8)
Do strength training exercises 3 times a week
Cut back on sugar intake
Sign up for a 5k with my best friend
No coffee drinks from the coffee shop on the way to work

Recreation

Read 1 book this month
Blog at least 3 times a week
Get together with friends

Home

Take boxes to Salvation Army
Get rid of all the cardboard boxes that are taking over our lives
Clean the basement
Scrub out the fridge

That is all I can think of.  I think most of these goals are actually attainable.  I think there are a few that will be difficult to stick with, but overall I think February will be a successful month.  I am going to stay positive and hopeful that I can stay on track this month!

What are your goals for February?

image courtesy of fotographic1980 at freedigitialphotos.net