Saturday Cents

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I went to the grocery store today, as Miss C and I are heading out of town starting tomorrow.  Hubs will be all alone at home with the two dogs.  I am sure they will have a great time!

I needed to make sure that I had enough at home for Hubs to eat without forcing him to out each day and night.  He had a couple requests (pizza, mac and cheese, etc.)  Luckily I was able to score some good deals! I also spent a bit of my birthday money on a book.  It was $10.50, and I figure I will get some good reading time in these upcoming days.

I plan to go back to the store on Wednesday to get more actual food for meals.  I will start back up with cooking when I return.

Here is a breakdown of my shopping trip.  I went ahead and subtracted the amount I spent on my book, since it was not from our grocery budget.

Total budgeted: $120 (what is leftover is what I will use on Wednesday)
Total spent: $58.70
Paper coupon savings: $6.49
eCoupon savings: $4.50
Mega Event Savings (buy 5 save $5): $5.00
Sales savings: $6.12

Here are some of my best deals:

DiGiorno Frozen Pizza (x5) 
Regular price: $5.99 ($29.95)
Sale price: $4.99 ($24.95)
Mega Event: -$5.00
Total spent: $19.95
Total saved: $10.00

Plum Organic Tot Food Pouches (x2)* 
Price: $1.59 ($3.18)
eCoupon: -$1.50
Total spent: $1.68

Gerber Graduate Tot Food Pouches (x3)* 
Price: $1.53 ($4.59)
eCoupon: -$1.00
Total Spent: $3.59

Dole Squish ‘Ems 
Price: $2.79
Coupon: -$1.00
Total Spent: $1.79

Gillette Deodorant (x2) 
Regular Price: $4.45 ($8.90)
Sale Price: $3.99 ($7.98)
eCoupon: -$2.00
Total Spent: $5.98
Total Saved: $2.92

Dillon’s Brand Laundry Detergent
Regular Price: $5.99
Sale Price: $3.99
Coupon: Free Detergent -$3.99
Total Spent: $0
Total Saved: $5.99

*I typically do not buy these foods, but I had coupons, and they travel well.  We will take them in the car with us on our trip.  

Have you found any great deals this weekend?

Feeling Accomplished

Here are the to-do lists I showed you yesterday:

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I had nothing crossed off yesterday, and today there is so much crossed off (actually I highlight the things I get done because I think it looks prettier.)

Here are also a few things that I got done that weren’t on the to-do list:

Took Miss C to story time
Met up with my parents to run errands and have lunch
Went for a walk with Miss C
Folded/put away all previous clean laundry
Took out trash (as in took trash can to curb)
Destroyed 2 ant colonies (one in our mailbox and one in between stones in our back patio)
Sprayed Round-up on numerous weeds
Remembered to put flea/tick medication on the dogs
Actually did 2 loads of laundry, not just 1
Did a little bit of training with the dogs
Showered and made myself presentable enough to leave the house
Hung curtains
Loaded, unloaded, and loaded again dishwasher

So, even though I still have a number of things on my list that did not get accomplished today, I sure do feel good about how much did get done!  Tomorrow I have no plans to go anywhere.  It will be the first day this summer that we stay at home the entire day!  I hope that the weather cooperates, as I would love to get all the bedding in the house washed.  I would also like to go on a walk in the morning if it is nice out.

I will probably try to get the fridge cleaned, junk basket organized, and bathrooms cleaned during nap time, but I may just curl up and take a nap myself.  That is really what I wanted to do today, but I am happy that I resisted and got so much done.

Did you get a lot done today?

To-Do Lists

You know what I am really good at?  Making to-do lists.

You know what I am really bad at?  Getting things done on the to-do lists.

I have been really wanting this summer to be productive.  It seems as though by the time school rolls around in August, I look back over my summer and realize that I got next to nothing accomplished.  I wanted to make this year different.  It started off well.  I had gotten quite a few things done, but I have plateaued.  My motivation is lacking, and I haven’t been able to get back with it.  I know that realistically I will not get everything done that I want, but I also know that I will be hard on myself if I don’t get much done.  (It is just how I am.  I don’t know how to let it go.)

Here are my to-do lists for today and tomorrow:

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As you can see nothing has been checked off.  That is partly because I haven’t taken the time to check anything off.  The only things I can check off are “Dogs to the vet: 9:00 am” and “Lunch: Out w/ladies.”  That is it.

I had the check in my wallet to pay our utility bill, but I forgot to stop by today.  It isn’t due until the 10th, so it won’t be late or anything, but I had planned to get it done today.  I also had my check to deposit and post-it note with what I needed to get out in cash.  I did not make it to the bank.

Everything else was my laziness.  I procrastinate and procrastinate, and then at the end of the day I feel super lazy.  I don’t have a lot of time to get things done during the day, usually just during nap time, and by then I am exhausted so I just want to rest.

I will probably adjust my lists so that I do in fact get things done tomorrow.  Miss C and I will head to story time at 9:30, and then hopefully actually go to the bank.  I also plan to pay our bill tomorrow as well.  And I have to make my client disc, as I plan on seeing my client tomorrow and giving it to her.  The weather is a little uncertain, so I don’t know if I will do laundry, as I hang everything out to dry.  If the forecast looks ok, then I should get at least 1 load done.  I probably need to focus on getting all the current clean clothes folded and put away before I start washing more.

Who knows when everything else will get done.  Isn’t summer supposed to be a time to relax?  I am not feeling that way at all! I suppose I do it to myself. 🙂

What do your to-do lists look like?

Menu Plan Monday

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Don’t worry, I haven’t forgotten about my menu plan.  In fact menu planning has gotten twice as hard since I now have to plan lunches as well as dinners.  When it was just me, I would end up just eating a bowl of cereal or snacking through lunch.  Now that I am in charge of a little munchkin, it is important that we have well-rounded meals, including lunch.  I have been trying to incorporate more fruits and veggies into our meals lately, and I have found out that Miss C is a fruit monster.  She loves it!

It has been a while since I have done a menu plan, so let me review how it goes.  Since I go to the farmer’s market on Saturdays and grocery store on Sundays, I usually plan my meals on Friday nights.  That way I can know what fruits and veggies I need from the farmer’s market.  Then whatever I don’t find at the farmer’s market, I can still put on my grocery store list.  My meal plan starts on Sunday at lunch and ends Saturday at dinner.  Since Hubs works late on Saturdays (noon until 10:00 pm), Miss C and I plan to meet him for dinner out those nights.  It is much easier than trying to cook a meal with a toddler during witching hour.  I have budgeted $20 a week for those meals out.  It is a lot, but considering Hubs doesn’t get to see the little one much on Saturdays, it is a nice break for him and a chance for us to be together as a family.

Now on to the menu:

Sunday, June 1:
Lunch: Homemade mac and cheese (with broccoli), cut up hot dogs, fruit salad
Dinner: Spaghetti, corn on the cob, bread

Monday, June 2: 
Lunch: Out for my birthday
Dinner: BBQ chicken tenders, corn on the cob, fruit salad, bread

Tuesday, June 3:
Lunch: Out with friends
Dinner: Homemade margherita pizza, salad

Wednesday, June 4:
Lunch: Chicken salad sandwich, fruit salad
Dinner: Slow Cooker Salsa Chicken, green beans

Thursday, June 5: 
Lunch: Turkey sandwiches, leftover green beans, strawberries
Dinner: Smothered beef burritos, mixed veggies

Friday, June 6:
Lunch: Out with a friend
Dinner: Breakfast for dinner: pancakes, hash browns, fruit salad, sausage links, eggs

Saturday, June 7:
Lunch: Deli sandwiches, raw veggies, fruit salad
Dinner: Out with Hubs

The times you see that I am going out with friends, that money will come from my MAD money/birthday money.  It will not come from our budget, as it is just something I am doing and not something the whole family is doing.  I have gone out to eat with friends last week and this week, and I think I may have to pause on lunches out for a couple weeks.  It is starting to drain my MAD money, which I don’t want to use up completely.

What is on your menu for the week?

Sunday Cents on Monday

It’s my birthday!  I need to update my “About Miss Jessie” as I am no longer a 20-something!  I have started a new decade today, and I sure hope it is a good decade.  My 20s brought about a lot of wonderful things: a husband, two dogs, a daughter, a house, a job, a graduation from college.  But they also brought many sad times: two miscarriages, the deaths of my grandfather, sorority sister, great aunt, husband’s grandfather.  My 20s allowed me to grow so much and learn so much about myself.  I hope that my 30s allow me to become comfortable in my skin and bring about a self-confidence that I was lacking through the past decade.

For my birthday, we enjoyed some free fun at a nearby farmstead.  Here is my darling girl feeding some goats there:

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It was her favorite part!  After our fun there, my parents took us out for lunch.  We ate at a steakhouse, but had to cut our lunch short as there was a very exhausted, worn out toddler who was in desperate need of a nap.

We came home and the whole family took a nap. (In fact I think the other two members of the family are still snoozing.)  I can’t imagine a more perfect way to spend my birthday!

Now on to the good, bad, and ugly of the budget from this past weekend.

The Good
I finally sat down and got the budget under control.  I had somewhat ignored it and put it off during the end of April and May.  I now have it down on paper and feel better that I have a plan for our money and have an idea of where it is going.

We still have an ok amount in our savings. We had to use some of our savings for paying a medical bill from our miscarriage.  I haven’t updated the sidebars to show that yet.  It didn’t drain all of our savings, but I am worried that once we get the bill from my appendectomy, it will drain it.  Luckily though, it looks like we will be able to put quite a bit into savings in July.  That should fill it back up to a more comfortable level.

The Bad
Getting back to using a cash budget is really hard.  In fact, I did not stick to it this weekend already.  I went to Target with the intention of picking up a few things for Hubs (some snacks and some new boxers).  I ended up getting a few more things for the yard (weed and feed, Round-up, and a new hose).  These items were not technically NEEDS at this point in time, but they are needs in the long run.  I ended up spending about $90 that I had not planned for.  I will readjust the budget to take these purchases into account.  This means I will not take any cash out for clothing or the house this month.

I also spent some money for the dogs.  I bought a cooling pad for them, since it has been so blasted hot lately.  Our house is south facing, so it slowly heats up all day.  By the time the sun goes down, it is at 78 (which is what I keep our thermostat set at).  If I didn’t have the a/c on, then it would easily be over 90 in our house.  We are planning to put up some curtains, but are waiting for them to be sewn (by my mom).  Since I spent $50, I will not get out as much money this month for the pups.

The Ugly
There isn’t too much that is just plain ugly at this point.  Grocery prices are ugly, that’s for sure.  I went over budget this weekend, but not by much.  The prices of about everything have gone up, and I am really trying to not adjust our grocery budget.  I am also trying to be more aware of our waste.  I don’t want our money to be thrown away because we didn’t get certain things eaten in time.

Now on to our grocery shopping trip from yesterday:

I have started going to the farmer’s market every Saturday morning to get some local fresh fruits and veggies.  I usually take whatever leftover cash I have from the previous week’s grocery trip.  This past weekend I spent $7 and got 2 heads of lettuce, 2 tomatoes, and 4 green onions.  More expensive than the grocery store, but I love taking C to the farmer’s market and supporting the local farms.

Budgeted: $120
Total Spent: $134.78
Total Saved: $27.99
Number of items I bought that were not on my list: 7

Biggest deals:

3 lb bag of frozen chicken breasts
This price has gone up from $9.99 to $10.99 recently.
On sale: $9.49
Coupon: -$1.45
Total spent: $8.04
Total saved: $2.95

Dole Fruit Cups (x2)
Regular price: $2.50 ($5.00)
On sale: $2.00 ($4.00)
Coupon: -$0.60
Total spent: $3.40
Total saved: ($1.60)

Chuck Steaks (x2)
Regular price: $7.89 and $4.87
On sale: Buy one, get one free
Coupon; -$2.00
Total spent: $5.89
Total saved: $7.87

Bananas 
Price: $0.55/lb
Spent: $0.76
Checkout 51 Rebate: $0.50
Total Spent after rebate: $0.26

Milk (x2)
Regular price: $3.54 ($7.08)
On sale: $2.99 ($5.98)
Ibotta rebate: $0.50
Total saved: $1.60
Total spent after rebate: $5.48

Cream of Chicken Soup (x3)
Regular Price: 3/$5.00
Checkout 51 Rebate: $0.25
Print out $1.00 Catalina for next grocery trip
Total Saved: $1.25

Two new apps I have started using are Checkout 51 and iBotta.  They are apps that you can upload your grocery receipt to in order to earn back rebates.  You can then cash out once you reach a specific amount of money.  I have only been using them for about 3 weeks.  I have earned $4.75 on Checkout 51 and can cash out once I reach $20.00.  And I have earned $5.25 on ibotta and can cash out when I reach $5.00.  With ibotta I can get gift cards or have it put in my pay pal account.  With Checkout 51 I can have it put in my pay pal account.  I will probably just do that with both apps.  There are more money saving apps out there that I plan on checking out this summer.

How are your finances after the weekend?