Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Back on track...

We are empty nesters. We went a little crazy with our spending. We are now back on track.

It happens to most people. You no longer have many children to finance, so you eat out more. Spend recklessly at the grocery store. Go to movies and museums. It's just money, we'll make more.

Then your grown children are in financial trouble. Of course you help them. Good bye savings account. So long IRA. Time to start back at the beginning. Time to get real.

I went to the grocery store and brought home $52 worth of groceries.($52 after the store loyalty card deductions) We use a store Visa card for the cash back rewards. We use it for most purchases, and pay it off every month. That hasn't changed, I still have my frugal mind. It's back there coming into the light! haha

Anyway, after using paper coupons, ecoupons and the cash back rewards, I ended up spending $9 for the groceries. I'm so very excited. I have made my 2 week menu plan and have all ingredients necessary. We can do this. We can rebuild savings.

I will, hopefully, use this blog once again to hold myself accountable. We still have a mortgage and hubby recently purchased a new car, so accountability will look like this: Pay off mortgage and car, rebuild savings and lost IRA before penalties kick in. Ready...set...GO!

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Just read this book

I've been reading the blog Living Well Spending Less for a while now. I really enjoy the  Thrifty Thursday blog hops. I bought her book at Barnes and Noble with a much appreciated gift card.

My thoughts? It's really good! There is so much information in there, that I already put into practice. But, for a new couponer/frugal life convert, it would prove invaluable!
I enjoyed her personal stories and how vulnerable she was in telling them. That takes guts!

I signed up for her daily videos, meant to accompany the chapters. I'm not sure what I was expecting, but it was basically a repeat of the book. So, I would recommend either watching the short videos, or reading the book. Both may be over kill if you've been at this a while. (I've been living a frugal life for 20 years, starting with Tightwad Gazette)

This is the link to her site, telling you about the book. I highly recommend it to novice and pros alike! It was a great read and I couldn't put it down! While you're there, take a look around. She has a lot of great information to share.

Happy days,

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

A pretty good shopping trip!

It is the day of a major snow fall, not the best time to pick to do my weekly grocery shopping!  ☺

Otherwise, It was a pretty sucessful trip, just a bit crowded.

I brought home $225.00 worth of groceries and spent $90.12!!! After the store loyalty card savings and ecoupons, the total came to $155.12. After paper coupons and rebate checks, I spent $90.12! Not too shabby, if I do say so myself. 

Here are a few of the bigger deals that I scored:

*Yakisoba on sale for $0.69, used a $1.00 off coupon and spent $0.36 each. (normally $1.19)
*Pantene on sale for 3 for $10.00. Stacked a $5 maufacturer coupon with a $1.00 store coupon, spending just $1.33 each. (usually $5.29 each) 
*Jenos pizza on clearance for $0.69 each, used a $1.50 e-coupon on 
top of that, spending just $0.44 each. (usually $1.00 each)
*Lara Bars on sale for $0.89 each, used a $1.00 coupon, spending $0.56 a
 piece. (usually $1 or more)
*and the Easter candy and gum were free on my store loyalty card.
 (value $1.60)

Thursday, January 8, 2015

My coupon savings

I like to track how much I save, when I use coupons. I count the savings from digital coupons and paper coupons. The digital coupons are ones that I use from my smart phone or ones that I load to my grocery loyalty card. So basically, if I clipped it or loaded it, it gets counted. These savings totals include not only grocery coupons, but also restaurant, automotive, movie theater, thrift stores etc.

Here are my last 5 years' totals:

2010- 1,053.92

2011- 1,656.51

2012- 1,468.99

2013- 1,865.28

2014- 2,366.29

2012 wasn't my best year, but excluding 2012 I increase the amount year by year. It becomes my personal challenge, to save even more this year compared to last.

So for spending about 30 minutes every week this past year clipping coupons, I earned about $45 weekly average in savings. I count that a success!

Have a blessed day!

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Baby steps to a solar future

I envision my future to be completely off the grid. I want the sun to produce all of my power for me. That is the goal!

Financially, we aren't able to be there yet. I'm starting with baby steps. I first bought a Nokero solar lightbulb. It looks like a light bulb with a solar panel on the side. It comes with a small hook, so you can use it as a tent light. Our power was out recently. I just went to the window sill, where the light bulb lives, and turned it on. It was just as bright as a conventional flash light! I've also used it to read in bed, at night. Its bright enough for me to read but not so bright it keeps hubby awake.

Next, I bought a small solar panel. Its called a Nomad 7 portable solar unit. It can be used at home or on the go. It comes with 2 small panels and can be hooked to a backpack. I just keep it in my window and charge. It doesn't have a battery, so it just charges your devices,it doesn't store the power. I now charge my phone and laptop and no cost to us.

The very best part of these purchases is that I found them at discounted prices! The solar lightbulb was about $6 cheaper than retail and the solar panel was $20. That's $80 off of retail!!!!! The reason? The box was smooshed. Seriously!

Next step, solar lights for our outbuildings. No more using a flashlight to try and find something in the shed. Just flick a switch and the solar lights come on.

One day.....whole house solar. One day...

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Ways I saved money last week


I had BOGO coupons for the Pantene and free coupons for the popcorn and Breakfast On The Go. Yay! (retail value $13.96)

I bought a few Crest coupons online and saved them for the $1.00 per tube sale. (paid about $1 for them) My store still 8 free tubes of toothpaste! I still have 3 left from my last stock up, so I will share the wealth. I had 2 $2.25 coupons off of 2, for the vitamins and they were BOGO, so 4 vitamins for $13.50. (retail $36) Thats 200 days of vitamins so this will last a good while! (just in time for cold season) :-)

While I was running errands, I stopped at Arbys with my free drink coupon. Yay.

I went to the thrift store, looking for new work clothes, and used a 50% coupon on one item and a 25% coupon on another.

I found stocking stuffers, on clearance, at Hobby lobby. (at 50% off) I am now done with stocking stuffers!

I found a great gift for a good friend there as well. She and I both know we shop clearance sales for gifts, so I don't even have to hide the sale tag on the gift! That makes three people I'm done shopping for. Come on Christmas! Sweet!

Monday, September 23, 2013

future empty nest syndrome

After raising a few kids, which includes LOTS of mess and stress, I'm missing the chaos.

I have just one more at home.

It's too quiet.

Luckily I get my grandbaby once or twice a week.

That little booger can sure make a mess. I remember how upset I would get at my kids destroying the house I had just cleaned.

I wish I hadn't done that.

I need a time machine. I want a do-over.

I feel like empty nest syndrome is going to destroy me.