Saturday, March 1, 2008

SSSTTRREECCCHHHH- February Frugal $400 Final

It came down to the wire, but we made it. I came in $4.08 over my budget of $400. But whose counting right?

Obviously things were again tight, but it didn't feel nearly as restricting as last month. I think this was in part to the fact that I spread the money out more effectively and that I got a lot of chocolate from CVS :) A girl with a stash of chocolate never feels deprived.

I also started using newspaper insert coupons again. I saved about $20 alone using these this month. With some organization on my part I think this could be better.

We are now officially out our freezer reserves except for one turkey that I was surprised to find at the bottom. We'll use that one in March.

I've discovered that the one thing I'm having difficulty keeping on hand is produce. I'm not willing to give up fresh fruits and vegetables, but need to find a more economical source to deal with the shear numbers of mouths here. I'm going to try out Sam's Club produce this month and see if I'm able to make it work. I know I'll like the quality and that the quantity will be more. It's just a matter of whether or not it will be a cost saving. We'll see.

We turned in all of our change from the month and came up with $11. 53. These will be going to buy compact florescent light bulbs. When it is all said and done and we replace all 16 bulbs in our house it will be a savings of:

$ 355.10

energy bill savings


pounds of C02 prevented

I found this by entering in our numbers on a nifty online calculator. Give it a try.

These are my goals for March:

1. Prepare some freezer meals with my sister Barb.

2. Buy bulk produce at Sam's twice this month.

3. Work on coupon organization.

4. Start stocking up on free CVS items for a garage sale this spring.

5. Declutter, declutter, declutter and use, give away and resell whatever I can.

Many of you comment to me personally about how you are saving. Share it with the rest of us and leave a comment. Your ideas and savings might help me or someone else!! Tell us- what did you do right in February and what are your plans for March?


Sarah said...

I'm not nearly as disciplined as you are, you inspire me!

Doing freezer meals with my friends helped us to save a lot this month. We have not ordered any takeout (a big achievement here) and I haven't done any quick trips to the grocery store to get something for dinner.

In March I am determined to save all of my receipts so that I have more than a ball park idea of what I spend every month.

Alyssa said...

In February I went on a $100 grocery budget. We came in at about $96. (it's just me and Steve so it's not that hard; or it shouldn't be that hard.) But I did have to stop impulse buying. Something I guess I really love doing. And I made a list according to sales and coupons and stuck faithfully to it.

And I have yet to figure out the whole 'free stuff at CVS' so I don't even have that going for me. Someday I'll get the hang of it and then I'll be saving even more.

We also stopped eating out, like the quick and convenient trips to McDonald's and such.

Monica said...

You are doing a great job with your budget! In March my goals are to work with a monthly menu plan with several freezer meals. I am planning to cook a large batch of spagetti sauce from scratch to see if this saves us a lttle compared to jarred sauce. I also have planned to make your recipes for taco soup and peach cobbler!
I think you will be pleased with the prices at Sam's for fruits and veggies. You will get much larger quantities for a comparable price of less food at kroger and walmart. I have always been very pleased with the quality and often it is organic.

Alaina said...

I came in pretty close on my food budget in February which was good but I want to do better. So we are going to a weekly cash envelope. It will help me spread the money out and plan more effectively. We are also doing a household budget instead of breaking up every category which will also help! I'm planning to eat out of the pantry more since we currently have a lot in the freezer and pantry. My menus may be a bit boring but that's okay. :)

We'll see how it goes - we definitely need to save more for growing our family and buying a van! :)

Kathy in WA said...

Dh and I had a nice LONG talk about finances this afternoon. Okay, it was long but not so nice.

Thanks for sharing how you are doing. We are carrying quite a bit of debt right now and need to be more careful with our money.

It's hard!!

Duckabush Blog

Sniz said...

Tif and I were just talking about this tonight. I wish grocery budgeting and meal planning were easier for me. You have a gift, Monica.

eally said...

I've been reading your blog and you are an inspiration! I've really gotten into the whole CVS/Walgreen's rewards programs. I told my husband the other day this is addicting! LOL
To see how much I can get without spending any of my own money! Thank you for posting all of your helpful information and goals. I am going to begin setting goals of my own now...haven't taken that "leap" yet. :-)