The first hurdle in my No Spend Month Challenge was brought to my attention at 1:00 am on January 1 (it was New Year’s Eve + I have teens = I was awake). My daughter was thinking about an upcoming school project and remembered she needed a bi-fold presentation board. This didn’t make my mental checklist when I was preparing for the month.
The next day, I remembered that I kept many of the presentation boards from past projects and maybe, just maybe, she could reuse one. Most of the boards were unusable due to the copious amount of glue used, but one had scotch tape, so I was able to remove the previous project with little damage to the board. My daughter is a good sport and said she could work with the blue board. No shopping, no money spent. Win-win!
Alan did end up spending a small amount of money at the home improvement store. We’re planning to finish the rest of our basement by adding a bathroom and bedroom/office. As avid DIYers, we plan to do it ourselves, of course (and slowly this time – to save money and sanity). This week, he noticed a sale for electrical supplies with an additional 15% off. We’ve been saving our rebates from this particular store to make a purchase for the basement project. He thought he could make the purchase with our rebate certificates at no cost to us. He was wrong. The certificates did cover most of the cost (total was $152.18). He spent $8.60. I decided to let it go. 🙂
Food wasn’t an issue this week. We had leftovers from the previous week, plus we were still stocked up from December. One thing I did notice is nothing, and I mean nothing, went to waste this week. This is a great side benefit of the no spend month and something I’d like to continue beyond this month.
Here’s what we ate for dinner, not including veggies and fruit (lunches were leftovers + fruit/veggie):
- Leftover pulled pork (this lasted for 3 days!)
- Pork Sausage Casserole (from my favorite cookbook, More-With-Less Cookbook)
- Breakfast (omelets)
- Korean Beef and Rice
- Pizza (take-out, purchased by my parents for a family birthday)
I admit, I had a hard time looking at the grocery store flyers without scoping out all the sales. I swear, I was just looking through the ads to see what produce was on sale. I couldn’t help but glance at the loss leaders. Don’t worry, I restrained myself.
What about entertainment, you ask? There wasn’t much excitement in this category, which really isn’t all that unusual. Each kid was sick for a for a couple of days, plus we naturally spend a lot of time at home. Here’s what we did:
- Took down holiday decorations
- Watched football
- Played games (we played video games with the kids, plus Alan and I played cards a few nights)
- Tae Kwon Do class
- Watched movies on Netflix. One was Minimalism: A Documentary on the Important Things, which I highly recommend)
- Celebrated a family birthday
- Looked at a potential rental property
Food: $23.77 (just the produce!)
Gas: $71.16 (both tanks needed filled and we didn’t fill up before the end of December)
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