Friday, January 6, 2012

Carla's Low Spend Challenge - Late to the Party

Carla is having a Low Spend Challenge this month.  Since Mr. Goat has major job uncertainty right now (his CEO quit the week before Christmas and, before leaving, said that his company was out of money) it is a good month to be frugal.  My goal is to save as much as possible this month while not neglecting any purchases that need to be made anyway.  I'm late in posting my goals, but I've been trying to keep to them since the beginning of the month.

Carla's Rules (with my annotations):
1. Track purchases! Write down every single penny we spend! 
2. Continue with my “sealed pot challenge”. Any coins smaller than $1.00 go into my pot! (I'm not participating in this challenge)
3. Menu plan & shop from a list Make the effort to eat all the meals I have stocked up in the freezer, rather than buying more groceries, as they won't last forever! This will probably be the best single way we’ll be able to stick to the budget!
4. Find free & cheap activities to have fun! 
5. Focus on simplicity, organizing, & donating/tossing as much as is possible with 2 month old twins. Before my January challenge starts I’ll be posting a list of projects I’d like to accomplish during the month right below this
6. Medicines/medical care doesn’t count. If something comes up & we need meds, I’m buying them. 
7. No “pre-stocking-up”. I won’t spend $800 on groceries the week before my challenge starts in order to “get by”. It’s business as usual this month. (It is too late for me to restock anyway)
8. No purchasing anything unnecessary.  If it would be nice, but not essential, to have, it can wait until I know if we have a paycheck coming in.  This means that the toy budget for this month is $0.  I have also cut the household budget (bills, gas, food, etc.) by 13% in the hopes of socking that away at the end of the month.
Projects to Accomplish:
(1) Clean out kitchen pantry.  We had mice last month (ugh) and I am dreading cleaning this out.  No more procrastinating; it needs to be clean and usable by the end of the month.

(2) Organize Dining Room.  The dining room has become the "catch all" room and we are not making efficient use of the space at all.  I'd like to get it set up in such a way that we could put a couple of rockers in there for babies, as well as eat dinner without shoving piles out of the way.

(3) Organize and Clean Fridge.  Some of out food waste comes from the fact that our fridge has not been cleaned thoroughly in months.  I need to find all the spoiled and expired food and throw it out so that we can see what we have easily.

I know it sounds like I have the nastiest house in the world, but the truth is that I've devoted my small amount of cleaning time and energy to keeping the babies' areas clean and organized, to the detriment of the adult areas.  Some parts of my house are actually quite nice, I promise.  The bathrooms and kitchen have been cleaned every week without fail.  And once I get these projects done, my home will be almost acceptable again.

So far, I have spent 23% of the monthly budget and we are 19% of the way through the month.  I'm a bit behind, but I shouldn't need to shop for groceries for another week, so I'll be on track if I can maintain the same spending pattern until then.


  1. Good luck on your challenge. I am doing it to! I cleaned out my pantry this week, and I am so happy I did it. At least now I know what I have/don't have. I need to clean fridge before I go for groceries. I'll check back with you to see your progress!

  2. You have TWINS!! I could barely find the time to pee with one baby, Nevermind two!! lol! ;) I've added you to my challenge page! Good luck!! :)

    Ps - Do you have an iPad/iPod? Cause there are some really good reading/devotional plans on the YouVersion Bible APP. :)

  3. Hope hubby's job is OK, we are on thin ice with the job market as well we nevr know when the shoe might fall. Good luck with the challenge this month, looking forward to following along