Saturday, October 12th, 2013
If you want to see exactly what I purchased, check the posts under My Deals for more details.
Ugh! I went over budget again this month. I kind of knew that I was but I still don’t like seeing it. The thing is, I’m not really worried about it and here’s why. A lot of my spending the last couple of months has been because I was buying lots of fruits and veggies to preserve. I’m done with that now so I know I won’t be spending as much during the next couple of months. I also have about $60 worth of gas rewards that I earned in September and will use in Oct. So that will help me out too.
Still, I obviously need to be aware of my spending and mindful of what I purchase. Being over budget like this is a good reminder for me about that! I want to be more intentional about asking myself, “Do I really need this?” when I go to buy something. There will be times that I can definitely say no and just do without. After all, that is one of the biggest ways to save!
Monthly Grocery/Household Budget: $200
Total Spent: $261.38
Total Saved with Coupons: $174.50
Total Saved with Sales: $144.25
Total Saved: $318.75 + 103.50 in gas savings* (thanks to grocery purchases)
* for details see individual Weekly Spending Summaries
Week 1: $40.26
Week 2: $38.65
Week 3: $129.01
Week 4: $53.46
Ending Monthly Balance: $61.38
This is the amount that I am over budget for the month!
Ending Annual Balance: $92.42
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In case you are confused, this is the amount I am over (yes, OVER) budget for the year. Last month I was a bit over budget as well, so by adding that amount to this month’s spending it obviously put me even more over.
Friday, October 11th, 2013
Trying to figure out how to set up a budget? Having trouble sticking with the budget you already have? Sign up for LearnVest’s free online budgeting tool and get on track today!
It’s a known fact that one of the best ways to save is to have a budget or spending plan. And for us, knowing where our money goes and how we spend it has been invaluable in paying off our home mortgage in 6 yrs. time (we borrowed almost all of it to begin with- not recommended!!), staying out of debt since then and paying for my husband’s current schooling without borrowing money. I can’t recommend budgeting enough!
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Monday, October 7th, 2013
Some of you have wondered where I get my printable coupons. Here are the main coupon sites that I use: Coupons.com, Coupon Network, Smart Source, Red Plum and Saving Star. Manufacturer websites and Facebook pages are another great source.
I didn’t do nearly as much shopping this week. The deals at CVS just weren’t worth going for and pretty much the only deals at Giant this week were gas deals, which I didn’t need since I already have enough points for a free tank of gas and the points expire this coming Sat. So, I took a little break from shopping which is always nice since it helps keep me from getting burnt out doing coupon shopping.
Favorite buys this week:
- Moneymaking Colgate mouthwash
- FREE Lindt dark chocolate truffles (my favorite!)
- Moneymaking shampoo
- Wholly Salsa for $0.25
- Carrots for $0.35/lb.
Total Spent: $24.76
Total Saved with Coupons: $15.60
Total Saved with Sales: $7.46
Total Saved: $23.06
Rite Aid: $0 (used cash)
Saved with Coupons: $15.60
Saved with Sales: $7.46
I had some grocery cash that I used for this purchase which was $1.44.
The Colgate was a tiny moneymaker of $0.11 after coupons/sales, the Lindt truffles were free and the Simple and Suave were part of a promotion where you get a $5 UPReward when you purchase $15 of participating products. Unfortunately they were out of the 2 bottles Tresemme shampoo that I wanted to purchase as well so I had to get a rain check for that. But once I purchase that, the Tresemme, Suave and Simple will be a moneymaker of $2.75 total!
One thing on the Lindt truffles. They are so good. Like as in my favorite chocolate ever. I’m a dark chocolate fan and so I got the dark chocolate truffles…totally decadent! And I’ll confess, I’m being pretty selfish with them. I linked to the coupon for them below. You should be able to use it to get either the truffles or the Lindt chocolate big bars for free or very inexpensively at many stores.
- Colgate mouthwash $2.99
- 2 Lindt Truffles $3.00 each
- Simple Facial Cleansing Cloths $5.00
- Suave Shampoo $3.00
- $1.10 Colgate printable coupon
- Two $2.00 Lindt printable coupons (from Lindt Facebook page)
- $2.00 Simple coupon from Sunday newspaper coupon inserts
- $2.00 Simple Rite Aid Video Values coupon
- $1.50 Suave load-to-card coupon (manufacturer coupon that you can load to your Rite Aid card via Rite Aid’s website)
- $5.00 in UPRewards (Rite Aid coupon that print at register for purchasing specific items)
- $2.00 UPRewards coupon for purchasing the Colgate (can be used on next purchase of any item)
- $2.00 UPRewards coupon for purchasing the Lindt (can be used on next purchase of any item)
- $1.25 via Ibotta for purchasing the Suave
By the way, if you been regularly reading these posts, I just wanted to make sure you noticed that I actually managed to skip going to Aldi last week!
But I had plenty to get this week! The carrots and Wholly Salsa were things I hadn’t planned on buying but they were such good prices I decided they were worth it. I use carrots a lot in soup this time of year so I figured paying $1.38 for 4 lbs. was definitely worth it! (They were on Special Buy this week.) And the Wholly Salsa was marked down to just $0.25 for each 10 oz. container! It expired the next day but I just put most of it in the freezer to use later. I use salsa fairly often in recipes including my Salsa Chicken Soup, so I knew we’d easily have no trouble using it. Actually, I make and can my own salsa, but I figured this was at least as cheap, if not cheaper, than what I can make it plus I don’t have the time involved either.
Just a little tip. If your Aldi is like ours, they will often have signs on the doors as you walk in that tell you what items they have marked down. Pay attention to these and you’ll likely be able to get some great buys. Sometimes the marked down price isn’t huge savings but sometimes you can get amazing deals like I did with the salsa.
I bought the pinto beans to make easy Crock-pot Refried Beans. I love making these up and putting whatever I don’t want to use right away in the freezer. Then I just pull them out whenever I want to make things like Bean Dip or Bean and Sour Cream Enchiladas.
Oh, and a quick story about the butter. I recently did a talk about saving money for a local church’s ladies tea. Anyway, one of the illustrations I used in my point about saving money by stockpiling was buying butter for $2.00/lb. or less, which is my buy price. So I found it pretty ironic that I ended up buying butter later that week for $2.49/lb! That is the most I’ve paid for butter in years!
Here’s what happened. My husband, the organizer, recently rearranged our freezers at my request. I was pretty sure I had quite a bit of butter in one of them but could not find it anywhere. I dug and looked and dug and looked some more. Finally, I asked him to see if he could find it. He came up from our basement where the freezers are and declared that it looks like we’ll have to make our own since he couldn’t find any either! I was rather mystified because I was almost positive that I had at least 8 lbs. down there. But, since the freezer is really rather organized and since we both had looked thoroughly, after waiting a couple of days and limping along on my last lb. of butter I finally broke down and bought more. Guess what? That afternoon I went to the freezer to get some ice cream bars to give my dad-in-law and brother-in-laws and when I lifted the box of bars,there was the butter! All 12 boxes of it! I was slightly annoyed that I had given in and bought butter earlier that morning but was quite happy that I had just decided to buy only 1 lb.
- 2 Carrots 2 lb. $0.69 each
- Taco Seasoning $0.35
- Lemon Juice $1.89
- Mayo $1.99
- 6 Wholly Salsa $0.25 each
- Salmon, canned $2.69
- Canola Oil $2.59
- Pinto Beans 2 lb. $1.79
- Spinach $1.79
- Bananas $0.44/lb.
- Coconut $1.29
- Butter $2.49
- Pure Vanilla $1.99
- 2 Saltines $0.95 each
Centerville Bulk Foods: $0
I bought this stuff from a small, local bulk food store. They have great prices on a lot of baking supplies. This time I got rolled oats, oatmeal, brown sugar, raw sugar, oat bran and 2 spices. I failed to keep my receipt for this purchase and can’t remember exactly what it cost but I think it was around $10 to $15. I used some grocery cash that I had to pay for this which is partly why I didn’t think of keeping the receipt.
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- I bought this from a local farm. The 5 dozen eggs were $5.50 which makes them $1.10/doz. And the neck pumpkins were $2.00 total. I got them cook up and use for pumpkin recipes. I thought it was considerably cheaper than buying canned pumpkin but I only got the equivalent of 3 1/2 cans from this which comes to about $0.57/can. I can get canned pumpkin at Aldi for $0.89 which is more expensive but I’m not sure the work involved and the cost of the baking the pumpkins etc. is worth it. Still trying to decide!
- I also spent $3.75 of my grocery cash on milk at a local farm too.
Friday, October 4th, 2013
Amazon is currently offering a $15 credit towards any digital download when you use coupon code MACR0913 at checkout. The code can be used multiple times until the whole $15 has been redeemed. This is making lots of software free or nearly free.
Here are a couple of the deals I could find:
* Crayola Photo FX Studio (free with credit)
* Caillou Ready To Read (free with credit)
* Anime Studio Debut 7 (free with credit)
* Corel AfterShot Pro for PC (free with credit)
* Compartments Home Inventory (free with credit)
* Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego? (free with credit)
* Typing Instructor Deluxe 17 (free with credit)
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