Sunday, December 30, 2012

Who needs a budget?

Well apparently we do...Bleh.
We aren't completely broke, we have some in our savings, but that is money we really don't want to have to touch, so for the time being we are really cutting back.
I was able to keep Christmas costs under $300 for 6 kids and 10 adults because of my contest winnings and that really helped.  But winter just costs more.  Higher gas bills to heat the house, higher electricity costs.

When Rob is cutting back on lunch during the work week then it must be serious. I did win a ten dollar gift card to Mcdonald's which I gave to him and that will give him lunch for a day or two.
So I'm on a use up what food we have in the house kick.  I had leftover celery and baby carrots.  I cut those up and along with some onion. I added those along with chicken flavoring cubes, some noodles and a pound of boneless skinless chicken breasts cubed and cooked up.  And then I have homemade chicken noodle soup.  Plus it made quite a lot so I froze some of it to heat up another day.  I had to buy nothing for it and it probably cost around $5 and I will get a couple meals out of it.
I don't really make home-cooked meals.  I've mentioned it before, but generally probably 85% of what I make comes right out of a box or can.  A meal might look like a box of mac and cheese, a can of carrots and a can of fruit cocktail.  Part of it is laziness and part of is the fact that Rob doesn't like leftovers so I don't make meals that will have leftovers often.  I freeze them when possible and it is nice to be able to reheat it in the crockpot.

Extra Money
So my next move is to try to sell some stuff online or through consignment and hopefully that will bring in a little big of extra money.  
We don't go out to eat often (a few times a month), we don't have cable (just netflix), & Rob has a 3 year old iphone while my phone doesn't even have internet access on it.  We have basic internet and that's it.  I shop at Aldi's and generally only buy things on sale.
I also use swagbucks (I do get some sort of credit if you sign up through this link  Just a few minutes a day and I average a $5 amazon gift card every other month. I use zoom panel (a survey site) to earn amazon gift cards also to use as gifts.
The last thing I do is use save up.  I have been using this for almost a year.  I won an ipad3 in May.  I legitimately won and I use the thing daily.  The premise of the site is link your accounts (savings and loans) and when you save money or pay off loans you earn credits which you can use to play for prizes.  I have never had anything suspicious happen with any of my accounts for people who may wonder.  I hit the top ten  for weekly average this week.  I am in the mid 300's overall, but I don't know how many people use the site.   I recommend it.

My spending/saving plan.
I'm going to write what I spend to be held accountable here

Day 1 December 30
$20 Church tithe.

Help me
I need really cheap meal ideas, free date ideas and other ways to earn money.

Thanks for all the help.  I very much appreciate it.

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