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Archive for January, 2008

Walgreen's $5 off coupon

January 31st, 2008 at 02:54 pm

If you go to the web site there is a coupon to print out that lets you save $5 when you purchase $20.00 (sales tax is not included in your $20 total).
It is only good for today-- Thursday.

I did go and use it on staples. I did not want to spend but I decided it was a prety good deal. I got a ton of stuff some items were found in the clearance bin. Happy saving!

Staying away from temptations

January 30th, 2008 at 07:13 pm

On the way home from dance my DD asked if we could stop and get a quick Taco Bell. My heart was so happy as I had purposefully left all cash at home! So we could not stop! Beautiful plan!!

That seems to work great for me. At work I can not use the vending machine cause....I have no money in my purse!

Nothing really good for free at work today. I got some rubber like drawer liners that were leftovers from a new resident. They were new. Not sure where I will use them.

With high ---very high winds we lost power from 4am till 9am. My house was very cold! Luckily I turned on the gas fireplace.....so we all got ready for work and school via firelight. It was kinda fun and very humbling to be powerless. Lots of residents where I work are sick with the flu....many are now in the hospital. I hope I stay well!

I hope to bake on Thursday--brownies and banana bread and I will make apple salad as well if time permits. It is my day off so I will be staying home and not spending money or using up too much gas.
Friday is payday...yahoo again!

Staying away from the stores

January 29th, 2008 at 02:53 pm

I am trying this week to stay away from the stores and eating out. Boy is it hard!
Today I made my last stop at Walgreens to buy TP and paper plates via a coupon. I looked at the marked down and clearance area. Good deals.....but everything I picked up I said do I really need this and can I make do or can I get this cheaper?? Boy that helped.
I pretty much never have big time problems at stores...but a little bit here and a little bit there really adds up. Thursday is my day off....I am planning on not going anywhere. I will stay home and find things to do here. Should be easy if I plan ahead to not spend on silly things.

I have an envelope started with $20 to use for dance recital costumes. This will be hard but I am determined to save as much cash as I can to pay for them as "painlessly" as possible.

Today I washed my son's little FOCUS in the driveway. That was fun since the weather was warmer...for now. I washed quickly and used as little water as possible. I did a good job I think getting the winter crud off. I think it was cheaper then a car wash.

My kids are set as far as a summer vacation goes. They will be going for a week to my ex's partner's summer house in Kiwahah Island. I am glad as I am not taking them anywhere big like that. I hope to work alot that week they are gone.

Free Items

January 28th, 2008 at 04:49 pm

Back to work and of course I have my share of free things.
1. 3 Rolls of TP
2. Nice gold colored metal tin from someone's cookies. (good for storage or re-gifting)
3. Newspapers galore
4. Coupons galore
5. Local townie magazines I like to read that are from Jan and Feb 2008
6. 3 cans of Folgers coffee. Two new and one half used.
7. Stationary/Notepaper and stickers from March of Dimes throw away junk mail

Nice stash I would say. I did share one Folgers can with my friend who is really strapped for cash. That was fun to bless her. She gladly accepted my freebie.

I am still saving pennies and nickles in my change jar. It is fun to do and fun to save. Bills have slowed down a bit.....thank goodnes. I now have to start a slush fund for dance recital costumes.....I am way too embarasses to say how much it will be! It will be a huge amount. Due in March....so I putting some cash away here and there for that fund. Girls are with me all week except for Tuesday they will eat dinner with dad.
So one less meal to make. They ate a huge late dinner at his house Sunday afternoon so I did not have to cook dinner on Sunday as the girls were too full.

I did spend some money on Saturday at the dance competition. $48 on dance souviners....and dinner out with dance parents and girls for $36.00. That is always to be expected at these events.
I lucked out as one of the dad's does plastic surgery. We were seated next to each other. I decided to ask him about tummy tucks. He was happy to answer my questions and then he was happy to write off his dinner as a business expense! I learned alot. It helped me gauge how much money it will take to have one someday. Interesting to say the least. I think he was happy to answer all my concerns.

Well I hope to get more free stuff at work. I really like that part of my job. One never knows what one will find. It is like a treasure hunt. One sweet grandma's junk becomes my treasure!

Spending Nightmare

January 24th, 2008 at 04:59 pm

Today I had to go to WalMart and purchase a large assortment of what nots for dance team. Makeup and many go withs,it is utterly insane. I walked out very bummed out. It is two steps forward it seems and about twenty back. HOPEFULLY these supplies will last the entire year and I will not have to re-purchase anything.
Still it hurts to look at the receipt. I really have not been so bummed about money in a long time. I am really feeling it for some reason. Maybe I should stop watching the TV news!

My son called and wants to come home from college. He was just at my parents house last weekend. My girls are with dad part of the weekend---we have a dance team competition so they will be with me for a time. So I have to take my son BACK on Sunday to school. Part of me is happy to do it.....to have him home yet, part of me wonders why he is in college since he never seems to be there on the weekends! Part of me wanted the weekend to be alone. I was not looking forward to having company. I feel badly saying that. He is thinking of transferring. Maybe if he goes farther location wise, he will be less likely to come home alot. I did not come home as much as he does when I was in school. He says he is bored. I don't really get it I guess. So my Sunday is now shot since I will be driving for 6 hours. Hopefully I can get to the library and get some music CD's to listen to or a book on CD. We will see.

It is very cold here.....I have the heat as low as I can stand it and when the girls are home I do turn it up a bit.
Was going to buy some clothes today for me but decided I can wing it with what I have. Thank goodness for work scrubs! What a HUGE life saver!!!!! I literally have about 8 things hanging in my closet. I decided last week to get rid of most of my fat clothes. They are just too big.
It felt good to do that. Thankfully I have a quasi boring life social wise.....so I need nothing really. I never really go anywhere that I have to look dressed up or too over the top. I do need a pair of jeans. I have not owned jeans for about ten years....no lie. That is one item I really want.

I delivered the newspapers....a job I am really starting to hate but I like the small amount of money I get for it. It went quickly since it is so cold I threw faster to get it done QUICK!

I have a TARGET gift card my daughter got me for Christmas for $35.00. I will probably use it for food/staple purchases for next week. That will help stretch things. TP goes on sale on Sunday at WALGREENS.....I have a bunch of coupons to get a small stash going. I have set aside the money.

This weekend will be very stressful I can tell already. I will really have to work on staying sane, calm and prayerful. One day at a time.....or ONE HOUR at a time will be my motto! I WILL make it thru all hurdles I will be facing. It will be a piece of cake....chocolate cake with chocolate frosting. YUM!

OMG Bills Galore!

January 23rd, 2008 at 05:25 pm

Wow what happened?? It was all quiet on the western front and then BAM the bills went crazy! I got my property tax bill and a medical bill for $500.00 which please do not get me started on! Just uterrly ridiculous! I am scheduled for an ultrasound....routine of course....that my frugal friends..... I promptly cancelled! You know like 20% of it is covered.....so a....no way. A $400.00 car repair bill and then stuff my son can't pay me back for "just yet". So I am dipping into my precious and I MEAN precious savings account. No spending unless really a needed and I MEAN REALLY NEEDED ITEM. The new clothes I wanted and the new floor lamp.....forget it.

Tough times call for tough and tight reins. The sad part is I am not sure things will be getting better. What is going on????? Lord helps us all!

Glad and thankful for---
1. my part time job and thus a paycheck.
2. my house is not in foreclosure
3. kids and I are healthy
4. ex pays me what he owes me on time
5. I have all the basics of life covered
6. all my blessings

I can now stop complaining.

Keeping grocery costs down.

January 17th, 2008 at 05:48 pm

This week as I pass the small grocery store near the kid's school I stop in for fresh fruit. I have noticed we seem to eat more fruit when I pick a few things every few days. We seem to eat the fruit and it stays fresher??? It just seems to work better and there seems to be far less waste. I used to buy it by the bag full...that method overwhelmed us for some reason. Alot of it we wasted. I really like making a pit stop and purchasing a small variety to eat. The girls seem to like it far better. The result seems to be a better budgeted food budget.

Dental woes

January 17th, 2008 at 05:43 pm

I spent money this morning before the closet re-do. I had a back tooth removed. It cost me $153.00 since I do not have dental insurance. My face hurts now---I had nothing to eat today but a cup of soup. So another med. bill for the tax folder.
Hopefully I am set now as far as dental work goes for some time. I am blessed with average teeth that always seem to need some work!

Fun at work on my Day Off

January 17th, 2008 at 05:37 pm

Today I had a side job at work on my day off! I cleaned an entire walk in closet for one of the elderly ladies I clean for. It went really well! I cleaned out 8 HUGE trash bags of non needed clothes and misc. Then I got the handyguy to hang a low rod. I re-organized everything top to bottom. It took me four hours. I made $60 in cash. Lovely! She went to lunch when I was just getting going....so I am hoping she loved it when she rolled back into her apartment! I know before she left she hugged me alot. I was really happy to get the money and a nice hug. Honest!

I then heard her bragging about me in the dining room as I stepped off the elevator. Talk about free advertising!
Really fun to see results and make someone so happy. Another reminder that one can live without so many clothes and shoes and whatnots! Keeping it simple is best.

Work Today

January 14th, 2008 at 11:01 am

Not too much free stuff today---newspapers with tons of coupons, some TP and also some more Christmas greeting cards.....fun to cut up and re-do new ones.

I also got the money for my ring. I got via a personal check...good Lord I hope it is legit! If not.....what the heck! Hopefully it all is fine and dandy.

My girls came home from dad's crabby as usual. My ex runs them absolutly ragged all weekend and then they are so overly tired and just so beat...they end up being very crabby with me. They do so many things it would make anyone crabby I guess. I have learned to give them plenty of space and down time. It seems to help. If I get too much into their "space" they really get emotional.

All in all a good day. Lots of running the girls to dance classes tonight. So a busy night is ahead of me.
I wanted to stop by the Dollar Tree but I am resisting spending....what on earth could I need??????? Nothing!

Crossed off everything!

January 13th, 2008 at 01:28 pm

Whew! I did it all--got everything done on my weekend without the girls list. I did super clean the fridge and freezer as well. Of course something spilled everywhere...so I had no choice in the matter. So I cleaned it out top to bottom.....a job I just hate but love when I do complete it.

Met my neighbor at the grocery store. I said to her..."shopping for the week?"--she sweetly repiled..."oh no for a couple of days". Well her cart was filled and she lives alone with her husband and they both work all day. Hmmm....interesting.

I am trying to really work on using it up and making due. Well in that vein I decided to buy myself a small $2.97 frozen pizza for my treat instead of Taco Bell. I decided to just not waste the time or gas and just stay put. Oh my that took a small amount of self control. Not a problem.....as I munch on my pizza I can work on my journal.

I got to bed last night at 9:30 and slept till 8:30!!!! Boy that felt so good. Sleep is such a wonderful healer. It does a body and mind so well.

All in all a great weekend of accomplishment. Now it is full steam ahead for the new week. I am so looking forward to my girls coming home--will be so good to see them.

Work Today

January 12th, 2008 at 02:45 pm

Not much free stuff. I did get about ten absolutly beautiful Christmas cards that I will re-use of course!!! Most were 3-d types or Hallmark brands. I had some free newspapers which I read on break time.
Someone was throwing away a footstool.
It was a fake leather type. It was pretty worn out....so I munster my frugal will power and placed it in the dumpster.

I returned the high priced handbag I got for Christmas....I got $187.00 back on a MACY's gift card. Now what to do with that thing??? I will spend very very carefully and make it last and last. I still feel badly taking my mom's gift back-- I just DO!!! I am glad she does not see me often. Because she would wonder I am sure.

Tried to sell something at HALF PRICED books....why do I bother???? What a total rip off that store is. It is so awful there....would you like $6.00 for it???? the sales girl rip off artist asked with a huge smirky grin on her face?????? Good Lord.....what a total waste of gas. Why do I go there....please stop me someone if I ever speak about going to HALF PRICED RIP OFF BOOKS AGAIN! UGH!

Got free juice at work.....to eat with lunch I brought. I will do that every day I work. Why bring a can of soda.....drink for free at work! I did bring my own plastic cup....will do that again and I will wash and re-use it. I could use their strofoam cups (which I hate using) but I will be fair since I am getting free juice. Frugal....frugal.

Will eat at home tonight......maybe taco bell on Sunday. I am so itching to go there. I have it on my brain! Ridiculous how I think.


January 11th, 2008 at 05:41 pm

Sold my engagement ring at a house sale my co-worker held today. Got a fair price as well. Very thankful she handled that sale for me. Other ring did not sell. Will put all ring proceeds into the money market savings account. Deposited a check owed from my ex into the savings account today. Working on building up that account and saving.

Bought 6 bulbs for recessed cans lights.
Spent $9.99 for 6 at WALGREENS. Bought one treat for me for a dollar. Ate at home tonight. Low heat as well.

Will return purse to the mall on Saturday. Will pack lunch for work on Saturday. Will drink free juice at work.
Will keep an eye open for free stuff as I work. Saturday will tackle basement, also I will journal.

2 Good Reads I am Working On

January 11th, 2008 at 05:33 pm

"The Ultimate Cheapskate's Road Map to True Riches" by Jeff Yeager
Comical and yet good info that will help you learn to live more simply and frugally. How to be happy and content with so much LESS!

"How Starbucks Saved my Life" Michael Gates Gill
I am half way done with this quick read. A man of much wealth loses it all and must find a new meaning to his life.
He starts over by working at Starbucks.
A good book to reflect on. You will draw alot from reading about how he started from a new humble begining...and found joy! inspiring!


Weekend plans

January 10th, 2008 at 07:07 pm

I am working Friday and Saturday. I have not worked a Saturday for about 6 weeks! I have had them all OFF as paid days. Now it is back to working every other Saturday.....oh well it was nice when I had that going for me. Kids are with dad so it will be a cheap weekend.
I plan on doing a few things.

1. Return designer handbag I got for Christmas....yes I just can not get used to the idea of such an overly costly handbag. Sorry way too thrifty here. Please do not tell my mom. Will save money I get in return to maybe buy some pans I need badly.
2. journalling- I am behind
3. Cleaning the basement for about two hours...that is it. A quick cleanup and organize session....no more no less. Throw one bag of trash and clutter away and feel a sense of accomplishment.
4. wash sheets thru out the bedrooms (son's bed is done)
5. grocery shop on Sunday AM
6. Keep the heat WAY DOWN and not use alot of lights.
7. EAT out ONCE by myself for a treat...maybe taco bell....we will see
8. Go thru free work magazines QUICKLY for recipes and interesting items.
9. pay some bills but get stamps when I grocery shop

Free Items from Work

January 10th, 2008 at 11:19 am

Lots of newspapers to read
Magazines--very nice ones
Two BIG unused rolls of TP
Half filled bottle of Bath and Bodyworks hand soap--Lemongrass scent
25 nice red plastic party cups
Nice,sturdy cardboard fruit boxes to pack up stuff for GOODWILL.
Old Christmas cards to recycle for new greeting cards I will make.
Coupons GALORE!!!
3 garbage bags

Killer month for Bills

January 5th, 2008 at 06:39 pm

I have alot of bills due this month. Most are not covered medical expenses, taxes to the state and the IRS, car insurance for me and my son ( the son is the killer), home owners insurance and I have a ton of dance team and class bills now that my two girls are competing starting in three weeks. So far..... this month of bill paying has been rough. I am planning on cutting back as much as possble in other areas. I just deposited a wad of cash in my savings/emerg fund and I REFUSE to take any out. Fingers crossed I can meet the challenge.

I am eating out on Sunday with my daughter. I know I just said this is a tight month. I am now taking each child out for lunch on a Sunday as a mother and daughter type date. I feel that I do not do enough one on one stuff with my girls. Lately my oldest one in HS has really had an attitude with me....so instead of punishing I decided to try the extra love approach. Hopefully we strike an understanding. Hopefully we just get to talk and share our hearts a bit. My girls went to the Hannah Montana concert with dad and to be honest I can not compete. Next is Disney on Ice and about three vacations.....two that are out of the country. So this is my way of carving out some time with each child. My heart just wants to connect and to let them know I love them so much. Plain and simple.


January 5th, 2008 at 06:30 pm

Thanks for all the GREAT comments on being grateful for our jobs and having the right heart attitude. It sure gives us food for thought. Lets all make a resolution to really work on our job appreciation this year. It can really apply to all parts of our lives.

Grateful for My Job

January 4th, 2008 at 07:01 pm

I am very grateful I have a job. After watching the news tonight about how the job market is so "bad" I was really counting my blessings. I had two co-workers show bad attitude at work and I can only shake my head. One wanted to NOT work the day after Christmas. She did not feel like it I think. Many of the girls had the day off due to vacation days. She was not one of them...she threw an immature hissy fit and temper tantrum in front of the boss and left early without permission on Dec 26th and then called off "sick" the next day. Another gal who I like alot who is about 19....left work cause she did feel well. Well she neglected to tell anyone and she just left her broom and walked out the door. She left her jobs undone and unfinished. I am not sure what has happened to something called work ethics....but they seem to be sorely lacking in some people. I find that rather sad and prideful. Everyone can be replaced. Everyone has a fair shot at being fired or let go for this reason or that. Not every boss is a gem.....but yet not every one of us is a ...gem. You are gettting paid to work and work a way that benefits others.

So I am grateful I am working and for the most part things at work are pleasant and fulfilling. I am sure going to try hard not to be replaced or fired or let go or downsized. I am really going to try this year to a be a good upstanding worker.
I want to model good work ethics and good habits of the heart. I promised myself I would try to smile as much as possible at work. Some times I don't feel like it. When I do smile things seems to go better.

I like getting a paycheck and I like being employeed. It sure feels good.

Free Stuff at Work

January 4th, 2008 at 01:52 pm

Free magazines I like
Free mailing envelope that is large and unused
Free Newspapers
Free manilla file folders that are brand new

Also I hit the library and got some free December magazines....which I will read and look for good recipes that are frugal.

Penny Jar

January 4th, 2008 at 01:49 pm

I cashed out at coinstar this morning.....735 pennies. Last year I had about 600 pennies. It is a silly thing I like to do. Not sure why. I may up it to pennies AND NICKLES this year just for fun. Life is short...have "some" fun!

Making a great deposit

January 3rd, 2008 at 08:27 am

I am happily going off to the bank today to deposit a large lump into my savings account/emergency fund. I was able to hold onto my December check from my ex and not do anything with it. Now I am going to safely tuck that away! I just have to be a little more frugal for January and I should be fine. Fingers crossed. I also am depositing my tv rebate check, the money my son owed me and part of my work bonuses. I just want to save, save, SAVE!!!!!!! Every little bit helps and adds up as we all know.

I got the WALGREENS sale flyer....I am resisting purchasing anything! I am fine on most supplies. I am heading to the grocery today. I will be sticking to my list...and eating out of the freezer and pantry as much as possible the rest of the week. I get paid on Friday, so I will be back at the bank tomorrow.

I have to throw newspapers today and it is very very COLD out there. I really do not like having to deliver the newspapers in the winter, but it seems worth it when I get a check each month for not much work on my part.

I have my thermostat set on 66. I am resisting the urge to turn it up. Staying warm by moving about and layering up.

Happy New Year!

January 1st, 2008 at 05:35 am

Very uneventful evening spent with children. We enjoyed some ice cream sundaes and watched some TV and listened to iPods. Today the children will go to Dad's house for most of the day. I will finsih taking the tree and ornaments to the basement for storage. That is it as far as putting away Christmas goes. I even took the wreath off the front door and replaced it with a winter type wreath.

Weds is go to the bank day and also take penny jar in to tally up the amount for the year. Little things sure excite me.

I hope to tidy up and work on my journal for the New Year. New journal...new blank pages....new year.

Have a good day everyone