Friday, September 14, 2012

2 Weeks In!

Hello, friends!  Well, my family and I are two weeks into our new lifestyle.  Some nights have been hard, but for the most part, Pen and I know what we're doing it better in the long run.  We've never even discussed eating out instead of making our dinner.  Having a weekly schedule has really helped us for knowing what we're doing for dinner every night, and not having the option of eating out has really helped us.

We haven't eaten out once in two weeks.  This is just amazing to me.  We have always eaten out at least once per week (pizza on Fridays), but we haven't in two weeks!  I am so excited about this! 

Pen and I have gotten "snacks" only once this month, which is a lot better than the almost every night that we were getting "snacks" before.  By "snacks", I mean running to the gas station and getting a fountain soda and candy.  We spent $1.69 for the drinks and and $1.07 for the candy.  We went to Family Dollar for the candy and got more for our money, which is fantastic!  I put $10 into the budget for these special runs after the kids go to bed.  We very rarely have soda in the house, and Piglet 1 can only have soda on Fridays and Saturdays as a family rule, so this is a special treat for just Pen and I.

I am eight pounds lighter!  I can't believe I've lost eight pounds in two weeks, changing nothing but how often we eat out.  That's amazing!

I've also curbed how much I'm spending at work.  I've only eaten lunch at work twice, once out of necessity (timing issues between meetings), and once because it was pouring down rain, and I work far too hard to get my hair straight every day to ruin in with a lunch run!  Both times I ate for under $3.  Not too bad!  Before this month, I had been eating out every day, be it at the cafeteria where I work, or out in the community.  I used to go out once a week with my girlfriend from work, and I've found an excuse to not do it so far this month.  I also have stopped purchasing soda and snacks from the vending machines.  I've been eating a later lunch, and that's helping curb the afternoon snack time.

We've been lucky that we haven't had to do much grocery shopping so far this month.  We haven't had to buy any meat so far because of what was already in our deep freeze.  So far this month, we've spent $60 on groceries.  I've been making bread, marinara sauce, and jelly.  We've been careful about what we're spending money on at the grocery store, and it seems to be working out that Pen goes grocery shopping on Wednesdays for the following week's groceries.  Pen does most of the grocery shopping because he works in a town with a Wal-mart, and I don't!  It works out, because he really only buys what's on the list, and I hate grocery shopping.

Piglet 1 turns six next Saturday, and we've been planning his Avenger's themed birthday party.  This has been a challenge, as generally I go a tad crazy with his parties.  I spent $18 on birthday party decorations, including an Avenger's banner, some balloons, an Avenger's cup (he always gets a cup for his birthday in the theme he's chosen, it's a tradition), and Avenger's cake plates.  My dad buys his cake every year, and my mom (divorced parents) always help with the food.  I am very lucky that I have this help, but if I didn't, we would have just fed everyone hot dogs, and I would have made the cake!  The menu is simple, hot dogs for the kiddos, hamburgers for the adults, and chips.  We're also doing cheese, summer sausage, and crackers (this is my favorite... any excuse to have this and I'm in!).  We spent $15 on Piglet 1's birthday present this year.  He gets so much during his birthday, and Pen and I thought it was ridiculous to buy him an expensive birthday present when he gets so many others, plus his birthday is three months from Christmas!  Another thing we did this year was limit the amount of kids we invited to his party.  I am very close with my cousins, and they all come to Piglet 1's party with their children, so there's plenty of kids to play with.  Piglet 1 picked five kids to invite, and I think that's plenty.  It's important to Pen and I that he have his friends at his birthday parties, because Pen was never able to.

Financially we're doing really well.  Pen has started working overtime, and the money is really helping us get back on track.  Last week he made $150 more than what I budgeted for!  Pen gets paid every Thursday and I get paid every other Friday.  By next Wednesday, we should have around $200, which is a lot better than what we have been in the past.  By my calculations, at the end of the month we should have around $600 left over.  I'm estimated we'll spend around $200 the rest of the month on groceries.

The only bill we're late on right now is our car payment, which was due on the 8th.  We would have had the money to pay it, but we're still paying catch-up on our old bills.  Normally, I won't have to pay two utilities payments in a month, or three months worth of Internet bills! 

We're also making plans for October.  It's unrealistic to expect ourselves not to eat out ever ever again.  We're still coming up with our budget, but right now it's looking like we'll get pizza the 19th of October (yes, that's specific, but it's the Friday that I get paid!). 

Thanks for following me on this journey.  2 weeks down, and things are already looking better for us!



  1. Wow, this is really encouraging! I just came across your blog after reading Imperfect Homemaking (love that blog). Your dedication and planning AND your success are all inspiring as my family also aspires towards a simple life. Eating at home is such a huge way to watch your diet and your wallet, we've found. Keep up the good work!

  2. AH! My first comment! I am so excited and honored that you took the time to visit my lil blog! I love Imperfect Homemaking - isn't she amazing? I love what she's doing with the Year of Less, and I'm trying to follow her lead to rid ourselves of things we no longer need. We're starting with the stress that comes from overspending. I hope you'll visit again soon, Becca!

  3. at this point the only way we are surviving is through my husbands constant overtime....i miss him!!