Attempting a 2nd No Spend Week

Last week went so well that I’m aiming to try it again. This time though it can’t be truly no spend.

This week The Goal is to spend less than $20 between Bunny and a few groceries. As we didn’t do our groceries this week ML & I once again planned our menu.

We made the chickpea tacos though the mayo bombed. I finally made a version of Woolton Pie and mushroom gravy. I had used stir fry veggies which in retrospect I should have added the potatoes and carrots.

Those 2 meals will take us until Wednesday. At that time we’re thinking of Mac n Cheese. It’s a grey, cold and dreary week so heavy comfort food feels like a great option.

I’m hopeful that my lessons over the last two weeks will help me when we opt to do groceries.

How’s your Monday?

No Spend Week

The week has gone well! I didn’t give in to the temptation to purchase snacks at work because I ‘wasn’t feeling for my apple.’ More importantly, I saw two friends without spending. The first I took chocolates to from the gift closet, the second was a bit more stressful.

I hadn’t planned on giving her dinner but I couldn’t starve her. My own plan had been to have avocado toast. Filling enough for me but I knew wouldn’t be enough for her. I was really tempted to order in and claim, “Life happens!” However, the freezer saved me as I found a frozen lasagna.

I’m sitting with Bunny and we’re struggling to not do a grocery run tomorrow. We made the mistake of peeking at one of the flyers and noticed tinned beans on for $0.88! Then we saw a couple items for the freezer and a some snacks for hosting

I spent an imaginary $30 in 2 minutes. I can easily justify these purchases to myself as stocking the pantry or wait until  Sunday as it will  be a new week.

I am really tempted to take the Sunday option but the thing that is holding me back is I still have almost all the food from my last shop. In fact my tangerines haven’t been touched! I desperately need to do something with them before they turn. I may try my hand at preserving them this weekend.

ML and I are going to menu plan this weekend with what we have. If we feel we’re running low or really want a few sale items I’m going to set a strict budget for them.

How’s your spending been?

Here’s a Wrinkle

I had decided to have an Uber-frugal January, so I carefully planned all my expenses. However,as Robert Burns knew, the best laid plans of mice and men often go astray.

To prepare for my spending this week I went to the restaurant’s website to calculate the amount I would spend. Two things went wrong:

  1. I made the rookie mistake of not calculating tax and tip
  2. the menu is outdated

My $50 expense turned into $80.

Both gas and Bunny are currently under budget so if I can lower my grocery spending this week I may be able to maintain my spending.

How’s your week going?

Spending Freeze…Maybe Not

I’ve played with the idea of a spending freeze before but found that it wasn’t for me. I am still drawn to the idea though so when Kelsey over at Warm House and Heart brought up the idea of a no spend week I was intrigued.

I like the idea of taking a week off spending. I currently count the number of days that I don’t spend in a month but it’s been a bit of a surprise that I don’t seem to be able to go more than a few days without spending money. At first I was gung-ho about the idea for next week. I had it all worked out:

  • Girls night in – I have apps, martini ingredients and pop at home. I don’t need to go over board on this
  • Lunch with a friend – I’ll ask to brown bag it
  • Dentist – as bills are allowed on this freeze I think I’m fine
  • Music Lesson – payment due; see above

Then I saw this:

  • Game night – I promised my friend a double date at the new cafe

Immediately I knew that I couldn’t cancel on my friend for the sake of an experiment. So instead of a spending freeze here’s what I’m going to do: I’m going to make a conscious effort to buy less. Though i track my buy nothing days is in my monthly debrief, I haven’t been putting a lot of effort into increasing this number. My biggest culprit is groceries. Since I live 5 minutes from a grocery store it’s easy for me to pop out and pick up sandwich fixings if I’m in the mood for it and it’s in the budget.

In the past few months I’ve ranged from 9-16 buy nothing days I’d like to see that number be around 15 days. It doesn’t need to be all in a row but I’m hoping that by making a conscious effort to purchase less I’ll be focus on one of the things that matter to me that I’ve been neglecting: being good to my environment.

For a day to count as a Buy Nothing Day I will not have:

  •  purchased food, entertainment or lifestyle items
  • paid for non-essential services e.g. music lessons

I can spend money on the following items:

  • household bills
  • necessary car maintenance
  • Fuel for the car
  • healthcare visits
  • debt payments

I’m not sure if this is really going to help my budget but I think it will help me be a more organized and thoughtful consumer.