Posted in budget, Financial Fast, Groceries

Grocery shopping

The inevitable grocery shopping day. It’s necessary at least once a week, but many weeks it’s much more often. Groceries in Hawaii are ridiculous. I likely spend on average of $150-200 a week on groceries. I’m starting to limit the frequency of shopping and I Derrick my best to stick to my list.

However, yesterday, I indulged and chose to shop at Target instead of Safeway. Except there were a few things I could not find, so I need to shop again at another store tomorrow.

There were a bunch of items on clearance, which meant I splurged a bit. I think it’s quite worth it and will save me the cost of buying the item at a later date when it is not on clearance. So, I bargained with myself at the store.

Other than my chai tea latte mix that I drink every morning and the tomatoes and basil to go with my mozzarella cheese, I’m fully stocked for at least a week, hopefully more. So I’ll make a quick stop for these items before work tomorrow and hold it in my work refrigerator. Then possibly get some bread and milk next week and we should be good for a while.

I’m learning to use what we’ve got, so the lunch and dinner menus are limited until my next payday, which isn’t until September 19.

Luckily a few items are on my rebates app on my phone, so I get a few bucks back! And it got me some shopkick points for another app, in my attempt to get a decent gift card for Target on a later date. Maybe I should shoot for $100 gift card, which means I need to use the app more frequently!

This might save some cash for Christmas, I better stop in for shopkick points more often!

How are you budgeting for groceries? Christmas? Leave a comment to share!

Posted in Groceries

Taco night

My 5 year old insists it’s HIS night to make dinner. I asked him, “What would you like to make for dinner?” He shrugs. Great, you want to make dinner but don’t know what to make.

Min order to make him feel like he’s contributing to the dinner making process, I suggested several different choices. Tacos was the winner! Therefore, tonight is “Taco Night”.

Unfortunately, we have no shredded cheese, lettuce or salsa. So here goes another trip to the store! Yay! Another chance to spend money I don’t have, great.

Today’s grocery list is VERY specific:
-cheese
-tortillas
-salsa
-lettuce (maybe)
-toilet paper
-paper towels
-creamed corn (I feel like making corn chowder!)

I have some coupons and I’ll check out the deals. We may end up at various stores for the deals, I’ll try to go to no more than two places, though!

We’ll see what the damage looks like later. Hoping to spend no more than $40. Can I do it?

Posted in Debt management, Groceries

Paycheck gone!

Today was payday. What can I say? After paying the many bills that I’ve fallen behind on and set aside my tithe, there’s barely anything left. Surprise, surprise. This is the problem every single payday. How will I ever get ahead if I’m constantly catching up?

Well, I’ve started getting into sites that pay for emails and pay for surveys and such. That lasted a whole day before I didn’t want to even LOOK at my computer. I still get the crazy emails and I hope to someday spend more time on it.

Needless to say, after working 8 hours and cooking dinner and giving the toddler a shower, how much energy is left for such tediousness? I really should treat it as a business and set aside times to actually work on these. I will not know the results until I seriously work on these for several months at minimum.

It’s the Friday before Daddy’s Day. I was too lazy to cook, so I splurged and ordered pizza. Sometimes coking is not my idea of starting a relaxing weekend.

Tomorrow we’re fellowshipping at the beach with some friends and I will likely cook a yummy dinner and breakfast for Daddy’s Day. If only everything were cheaper in Hawaii. Couponing is becoming my new friend. I’ve found many great coupon and rebate apps as well as websites to lower the costs of groceries.

Posted in Groceries

Coupons and rebate apps

My coworker is big on couponing. She brings coupons to work to share after she’s grabbed what she uses. I’ve taken a few, and used a couple, but often times I forget the coupons in my desk. This doesn’t help much when I’m at the store and the coupon is at work!

What is the purpose of coupons, anyway? If the manufacturer is offering a discount, why don’t they just lower their prices from the start? I suppose it’s all in the marketing and living in this crazy capitalist society.

I’ve never been big in couponing, but I can see the value in it when it’s done on a regular basis. $0.50 here, a $1 there, it adds up after a year. When I lived in Indiana, we had double or triple coupon days. Although I never took advantage of these, I wish I had! Here in Hawaii, we don’t have such discounts. It’s a bummer!

However, in addition to carrying around these crazy little slips of paper for a discount here and there, I also have added coupon and rebate apps onto my phone. It’s been pretty handy to watch the rebates grow.

I also have a rebate app that if can enter a sweepstakes to get $500 after spending $60 in groceries. Needless to say, I enter it as often as I get to the store. Maybe one day I’ll get lucky!

And every time I get a receipt that asks for me to complete a survey? I totally go online to do it. Many of these offer a chance to win something, another chance for free groceries? I’m on it!

It’s wishful thinking, but maybe someday, I can write about receiving $500 in free groceries…

Posted in Debt management, Groceries

Mommy broken

Whenever I go grocery shopping for what we “need”, my 5 year old son asks for a toy. I often tell him, “Mommy’s broke, no money for toys.” And he replies, “Mommy broken?” “Yep, Mommy broken.”

Our last grocery trip was really three weeks ago. Amazing! I did, however, stop at the grocery store for a few items here and there, a couple times.

Now that the hubby’s on vacation, I said he can do all the dishes and cooking so I can have a break. He’s not working, why not do all those little things I always do since he’s got so much time on his hands.

Day one of his vacation yesterday went well. He made us peanut butter and jelly for lunch and then mini penne pasta with bacon, olive oil, and mozzarella cheese for dinner. Delicious!

Unfortunately, we’re out of fresh meats, fruits, and veggies. I suppose it’s time to go back to the store. With hubby in charge of meals, I can only hope he’ll prevent going to the store everts single day. How much sense is there in doing that?

Now, I know what we have at home. So if I develop a quick menu for the week, I think we could spend $50 on groceries for the week. At least that’s the goal!

Posted in budget, Financial Fast, Groceries, Quality Time

Financial Fast fiasco

During this Lent season, I’ve been doing a financial fast that was encouraged by a book I started reading before Lent began. It’s a 21-day Financial Fast by Michelle Singletary. This book focused on many areas I’ve learned through the Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University that I took a couple years ago, but from a female perspective, which is what I needed!

Last week, I ended up going to the grocery store to grab a few ingredients for dinner. Then the very next day it realized my son needed juice and food for his school lunches. Back to the store I went.

And then on Friday night, i was lazy and didn’t want to cook. We ordered pizza from Papa John’s. Then, I opened an email about my son’s i9 soccer that is scheduled to start April 12. It reads that first practice and meet & greet is the next day. What?! How did I miss this information? Oh, I just deleted a bunch of emails from i9, was it in there? Shucks!

The child didn’t have any soccer shoes, shin guards, nothing! Off to Sports Authority we went yesterday, as soon as the store opened. They have a deal where you can buy a ball, shoes, and shin guards for $30! I’ll take it! The hardest part was finding his shoe size. After digging in the back, I found his size hiding. Thank God they had his size!

We get him to his first practice and meet & greet to find out he has no coach!! What is going on here?! The i9 staff take care of it until a coach steps up. I’m totally flabbergasted that there’s no coach. My son gets home and says, “Mommy, you coach!” Seriously?! I’ll think about it.

Needless to say, I might have gotten paid on Friday, but some items just we’re not in the April budget!! And it’s only April 6!! What a fiasco this week has been!

Posted in budget, Groceries

Cash or debit?

Finance subject matter experts suggest using cash to help limit spending. It’s too easy to swipe a debit or credit card. Cash is the way to go.

However, there are times when cash is a downfall. Today, we headed to Walmart to buy some juice for my sons preschool lunches. Immediately after getting out of our vehicle, I’m approached by a young woman carrying a box.

She’s interested in selling cards and bookmarks from her box. When I refused she asked if I would donate.

I asked what this was for and she said it was for the youth at a Unitarian church. It’s not a church I’m all that familiar with and lucky for me, I don’t have cash on me anyway. Although, I’m sure she’s love me to charge something, but I refused. She went on her merry way.

Today, it was a good thing to not have cash!

Posted in Groceries

Budget buster – ant infestation

Ants are a huge problem in our house. They especially love dirty dishes in the sink, the trash can, and any food that happens to have the tiniest opening. I have seen ants of various kinds just in our kitchen alone.

There are at least three species of ants in our kitchen (I guess that means they’re in the whole house). From big carpenter ants with little stingers on their rear to little black ants that seem to love the dogs food and water as well as a super tiny, nearly invisible ant that absolutely love dog treats.

Needless to say, it’s caused a cleaning effect in my brain, where everything needs to be just so. It’s helped to control the ants for the most part. But, the little black ants seem to love hanging out in the kitchen countertop.

In this location, they often find any crumbs left over from someone preparing a snack or meal to sauces that spilled. These ants come in droves and work very hard to get these little treasures back to their nest.

Unfortunately, they also find the just bought, not even opened yet foods and totally infest it so I just totally bought that item for nothing. What a waste!!

Note to self: whenever we buy anything, make sure it’s in a SEALED container that the ants cannot get into!