This weekend was a fairly frugal one.
I spent $23 at the store Friday, for chili fixings and some snacks that I took to the lake on Saturday.
Z and his lil brother 'X' spent the night Friday night and then the thee of us went to the lake on Saturday and spent the day. Today I made chili - which then became a batch of chili bean burritos for the freezer.
DD2 ended up taking Z to urgent care on Saturday with an earache that went from zero to 60 in just a short time. Poor lil guy. He really was miserable until they put him on antibiotics. However, once he started the antibiotics, he felt much better and is on the mend now.
Today I cleaned, did laundry, and just hung out at home. No spend day...
Update on Z and X:
The caseworker is filing all of the necessary paperwork Monday to start the court process of severing parental rights and starting the adoption process. BM is continuing to do drugs...but has started trying to get into an inpatient rehab program. If she doesnt get in by next week, she likely will do jail time.
Baby daddy 4 is still in jail and baby 4 is still in foster care in a different state than her brothers.
Viewing the 'No Spend Days' Category
This weekend was a fairly frugal one.
I am working on getting my frugal rhythm back this week. When the hub is home, we spend more than I do when I am home alone. So far so good. I am using up the last of my chili that I made last weekend, minus the 10 chili bean burritos that are still in the freezer. Those are still waiting for a later date.
I always have free coffee at work, rather than buying coffee on the way to. I used to spend about $3.50-4 a day, everyday...but about a year ago, I stopped. Now I prefer regular coffee over foo-foo coffee. I have even broke myself from needing creamer and just use a little sweetener.
Ive been taking lunches and trying not to spend. I did have to get gas today.
Tomorrow will be a spender though. It is DD2 and my granddaughters birthday, so I will be taking them out to dinner tomorrow night.
I am starting to plan Christmas gifts and love that I can use verizon points to give magazine subscriptions as an option. Rachel Ray, Oprah, womens magazines, teen magazines...I will see how well I can utilize those options!
Football starts tonight! I am so excited that it is once again football season. I love making soup and watching the games. I am a HUGE Packers fan. Any other Packers fans here? If not, WHO is YOUR team???
I still havent turned in the pennies. I have been pretty busy at work...but...tomorrow, I plan to bite the bullet and get it done.
Z had an awesome day with DD2...and sis made it to her first day of school. The plan is that all 3 kids will stay with DD2 again tonight. Another day for the kids to feel safe and secure. BM and BF did sleep in their car last night. They were hoping welfare would come through today so that they could get a hotel room tonight. FOr the unborn baby's sake, I hope they were successful.
Today was a no spend day. Actually, the last several days have been no spenders with the exception of Monday when I ordered the ironing board, which arrived this afternoon! How bad is it that you get excited about an ironging board--but I have gone without one for so long that it feels like a real treat to have one again.
I spent my lunch hour today working on our budget for the rest of the year. Because I am salary, my paychecks are the same every other week.
I budget the lowest amount that the hub has brought home each week to calculate his pay. The tough part is making sure I add the correct number of paychecks for the month, because he works 4/2 in the winter and 3/3 the rest of the year...which means every month is different.
I keep our budget on an excel spreadsheet with a different tab for each montn. Until today, I had projected through August, but now I have it through the end of the year. It is reassuring to see the budget for the whole year and to know the ebbs and flows for those months depending on how many weeks he actually gets a paycheck.
As I was working through it, I realized that I messed up in March and we will actually get a week of pay I hadnt budgeted for. That one week will pay for 3 of his airline tickets. Those tickets would have slowed down repayment of CC#3, but now that money will go there instead.
I have leftovers for lunch tomorrow, but dinner tomorrow night will have to be creative. Perhaps a PB&J sandwich...but I bet I can stretch out at least one more no spend day..or two. Hmm...
This has been a good week.
I received my eval on Monday, and it went way better than I expected!! Not that I thought it would be bad, it is just the first time Ive been evaluated by this boss. My raise is 5.75% which is really good! However, the scale raised and even with this increase, I am lower on the scale than where I was before the increase. hmmm. So, I asked for that to be corrected. I am on the list that will be re-evaluated after evaluations are all done and the budget is finished. My argument has been acknowledged as valid and so it is very likely that the additional increase will happen.
Tomorrow is my last work day before vacation. I have been going full throttle since December with the changes we have had at work, and so I am ready for a break...however, my calendar that first week I go back is already booked solid. There isnt an end in sight for a while..so I plan to unwind as much as possible the next week and a half.
I mentioned that I bought new clothes and a new pair of shoes last weekend. My oh my...those new shoes are WAY comfy and were a good investment. My feet feel soo much better at night now. And the new clothes have put a bounce in my step. It has been great having a few new things to wear.
Z turned two this week. He is getting so big. Still no new word on what his future holds, but for now, he is safe, happy and loved.
The hub is supposed to come home tomorrow. But as Lucky Robin described in her blog today, there are extreme conditions on the Slope and it is questionable if he will actually get out and all the way home or not tomorrow. We dont leave for our get away until Tuesday morning, so we have a little wiggle room for travel delays.
DD3 is doing wonderful at her job up north. She is learning so much and aside from all the snow and extreme weather this week, she has really enjoyed being up there.
Monday and Tuesday were no spend days, I stuck to the food plan and ate leftovers. Today I went to lunch and had grilled salmon and rice pilaf ($15). It was so tasty and it was soooo nice and relaxing to get away from the desk for an hour.
Tomorrow will be super busy getting everything ready for being gone next week..but knowing when I leave work tomorrow night I have the next 10 days off will make it worthwhile.
Life...is really good. I am so blessed.
Today was a no-spender. We had a potluck at work with our new team, so lunch was potluck food. I always love the variety...and seeing what others bring. It was mexi themed, so I brought a 7 layer dip with chips. One co-worker brought a spinach-artichoke cheese dip. It was so yummy! There was shrimp cocktail, tacos, deviled eggs, veggies and dip, cake and sodas. An interesting mix. But it is always fun to join in a collaboration like this. And, we have lots of left overs for tomorrow too.
My SIL sent me a text invite for dinner tomorrow at their house. This is a first..and I thought it was really sweet...but my daughter told me tonight he is making chicken picatta (my favorite) because he knows the hub is in Alaska this year for Valentines Day...talk about brownie points!!..Its looking like tomorrow will be a no-spender too!!
Wed, I will have dinner at work (free) because I have to make a presentation at the board meeting and they provide dinner at the meeting.
So, that just leaves dinner Thurs...and I have a chicken in the fridge thawing to cook up in the crockpot...
So dinners are all planned for the week until we leave for Sacramento on Friday.
Can I make it to Friday with no spending?? Thats my plan...we shall see!!
My self evaluation was due today. I always struggle scoring my work- but also feel better after I am done and have outlined my accomplishments for the prior year. It was a very busy year with lots of checkmarks. If my boss agrees with my score, I should get a 5.25% raise, which will be nice - expecially in a year that many financial institutions have wage freezes or are laying staff off. I have also aksed for consideration for a merit increase since I am taking on new responsibilities..but I will be happy whether or not the merit increase is approved. (This is the first time Ive ever asked for anything above what was offered so I am interested to see what happens.)
Today was a no-spender. Pre-planning for weekly meals really does help. Tomorrow I will need to get gas, but I shouldnt have any food or other expenses the rest of the week!
All in all, the first day in my new job went well. I am in limbo still as all of the changes are in process, so my new stuff doesnt officially start until the 9th...and I have already passed my old stuff on to the person taking that job on...so I am using the free time to uber organize my office and set some goals for this year. I will have a job description on Thursday and will meet with the team on Friday to discuss the reorganization. Change is not always the easiest thing, but this one feels like a good one - especially once I wrap my head around the expectations.
I am very blessed.
This was a tough year for Holidays. I have always wondered how people can be upset during the Holidays..but this year I found a new empathy for those who struggle during the holidays. I really struggled not having my parents or my brother (only sibling) here...I guess no matter how old you get, you miss having someone from your nucleus family...
I mentioned that my job is changing. Before starting the Holiday I moved my office to my 'new home'. I am glad to be done with the move. I got pretty sick for a few days...high fever, missed some work...but ended up being back to work to settle in to my new office.
Christmas was nice, with all my kiddos here for most of the day. The lil guys had so much fun with their gifts.
The hub wasnt here for Christmas, but we will take a trip to Vegas in January. He is working a ton of overtime. This will help us build up savings for the summer and a few little trips. Plus we are paying down debt. I hope to retire in 5 years...but that is negotiable depending on how the next few years go.
However, my focus is on making a 5 years retirement plan work....
I hope everyone had a wonderful Holiday. I plan to catch up on your blogs...
I spent yesterday working on homework, preparing my oatmeal for the next few days and making/ planning meals for the week. It paid off, because today was my second NSD in a row- well, at least for food. I did spend $520 today on the hubs RT airline ticket for his 3 week rotation home. Usually the RT ticket is closer to $600- so this was a deal!
Tomorrow should be another no spender, and then Wednesday I am taking my friend, who just lost her 21 yo son, to dinner.
I got 100% on my two first week assignments for school. I have two tests coming up, so lots of study time ahead.
Last night I tried a new recipe and it turned out really good. Chicken and dumpling casserole :
Just a really good dish of comfort food! When I make it again I will probably add carrots- but the dish turned out very similar to the picture on the recipe.
Well, time to stude before bed.
I am not a fashion diva. I actually am a poster child of the 'before' shot. I own exactly ONE pair of slacks for work, that I wash several times a week...how they have held up as long as they have is beyond me. And I have exactly ONE pair of work shoes. I have a weeks worth of shirts that go with my black slacks and black shoes, I rotate this wardrobe week after week. Seriously, this has been my wardrobe for more than three years...could be more.
The snap on my shoe broke Friday which cause the strap to just hang. I totally forgot about this over the weekend, and so yesterday when I went to get ready, all I had was a broken shoe. Thank goodness for super-glue. I glued the strap and wore the shoes yesterday and today with no problem...I guess I will see how long I can make the shoes work.
I am not sure why I dont desire to buy work clothes, I just dont. What I have works...
Today was a no-spender. Because of all-day meetings this week, meals are covered by my job.
I have six grandbabies...aged 7 to 1 1/2. They are all so different, and all so precious. Today was my middle grand-daughter's 4th birthday party. All of my kids and their families were here...plus the birthday girl's other family members...All in all, 10 kids and 16 adults.
My DIL came prepared with lots of food- and I made a few dips to go with some chips plus cut up the watermelon that I bought last week. I didnt spend any money today. It was a great day for everyone!
My son and DIL planned a great day. The kids enjoyed a slip n slide, a pinata, bbq chicken and beans, cake and ice cream...and just tons of fun. They came happy and left tired and ready for a nap.
Barely got the litte on in his car seat before he zonked:
Then, we drew names for stockings. I drew my SIL's name. I always hope for a girls name, and always get a guys name. I enjoy shopping for candles and bathsalts more than I enjoy beef jerkey and camping supplies...but- this is the first year I have ever drew his name, so I am happy. He and my daughter have a daughter together, and he is the stepdad to my oldest grandson. He also has supported keeping the two foster kiddos. He is an amazing dad to all of them, so I see this as an opportunity to say thank you to him.
I loved getting to see my son. He is enjoying the job in Cali...and looks so much happier and relaxed after not worrying about his own business anymore. I hugged him lots today. He heads back "home" tomorrow..todays party today was for his oldest. sigh.
My oldest grandson convinced papa that he should stay and hang out with us this afternoon...so he and papa are hanging out in the bedroom playing x-box.
What a great day.
I am a big fan of Amazon. I remember when DD3, now 19, was just a little girl and she asked for a pink unicorn. Where on Earth would I find that?? Someone suggested looking on Amazon? I had plenty of concerns.. Shop online? Was it safe? What about giving my credit card number online??? But I gave it a shot.
Not only did they have a pink unicorn, but they had several choice and prices. I found one and ordered it...and it was delivered to my door three days later...shipping...no charge.
Years later, Amazon is my first stop for many, many things. This week, I needed a battery for my laptop. I dont have time to run to the stores, so Tuesday night looked on Amazon where I found an array of choices, prices, customer reviews... a $23 battery was waiting for me today when I got home.
Much of my Christmas shopping is done at Amazon..(I even catch great black Friday deals there) I watch movies and TV shows for free (amazon prime, via my job), I am on auto ship for several household items like dishwashing soap and dryer sheets...which I get discounted and delivered free.
My school books...from Amazon used books...my free kindle books...Amazon...my point is, that Amazon has nailed my needs and expectations...and I am thankful.
Today was a no-spender for me. (yay!) We had a potluck at work- so I enjoyed some yummy treats..one in particular, a seven layer dip. Those are always popular!
I froze several loaves of my most recent zucchini bread from a couple of weeks ago...so I just pulled one out to take to work tomorrow. A small payback for the wonderful lunch I enjoyed for free today.
Life is good!
Well, the sore throat got much worse during the night and I ended up calling in sick today. I rarely do that, but honestly couldnt go in. I slept until 12:15, got up and took some ibuprofen, and fell back asleep until 4pm. And even though Ive been awake less than 5 hours, I feel like I could easily go to bed again.
It is pretty easy to have a no spender when you sleep all day.
Not much else to blog about today.
Today was a no spend day. My first in a while- I had a free donut at work that was leftover from a meeting, and then had a lunch meeting, so the job picked up the tab. The hub made dinner before he went to work, so I will have a burger in a bit.
Tomorrow my morning starts at 4am...will get to work at 5- so I will be off by 2pm. Tomorrow night is the party Ive planned for the kids and grandbabies to watch the meteor shower..I rented a jump house for the kids. Then we are making s'mores over the bbq and sleeping under the stars. Should be fun.
Saturday, I plan to pull some of the veggies from the garden and enjoy them with something bbq'd. Last year I only grew zucchini...so having so much more variety is so nice! I cant wait to do a bigger garden next year! Im not sure that my garden saves me money...yet. But I do know the veggies are just so much better tasting fresh off the plant.
My friend sent in her application for Extreme Home makeover...my fingers are crossed for her!