Well, I wouldn’t call it stellar, but the first week wasn’t so bad.
We were only slightly over the food budget I set for this month. That was the area I thought we’d struggle with the most, so props to us. For our family of six, we normally budget for $160/week (which includes eating out) so for the spending fast, I was hoping for around $120/week. We came in at $138. Sticking to our monthly menu apparently helps, but we could do better.
We had an unforeseen purchase: Drano. Sorry, but I’m not going to wait a month as the shower water pools around my ankles. With a backup supply it totaled $22. Worth it, in my mind.
We fell apart on the “gifts given” category. Not that it’s bad, necessarily, to overspend there, but maybe we could have been a bit more frugal. One purchase was desperately needed glue sticks for Warren’s classroom (2 packs of 24 for $12 total at Costco, no guilt there), another was the lollipop Valentines (maybe they could have been more cheaply produced at $4.76 for the pictures and $4 for the lollipops), and the last was a package of Thank You cards (I definitely could have made those myself for the $8 spent).
The first thing I’ve noticed about doing this is I really want to spend when I know I can’t! It must be that psychological appeal of the forbidden. How many times did I crave In-n-Out, just because? The other is that spending becomes too easy to justify for the sake of convenience. It’s just easier sometimes to buy a meal instead of planning ahead, especially when on an errand. Staying prepared and one step ahead is always a wise move when it comes to saving moola.
Next week, I aim to do better! Even though it’s Colin’s birthday and Valentine’s Day. Oy vey!
How did you fare the first week?