<< Back to all Blogs
Login or Create your own free blog
Layout:
Home > Category: Food / Groceries
 

Viewing the 'Food / Groceries' Category

I'm not going to make it

April 25th, 2016 at 10:52 pm

Big Bummer. While I slashed by credit card balance by 80% I'm not going to be able to pay it off in full like I wanted with this upcoming paycheck. I have to put the check toward my quarterly tax bill instead.

I think it's going to be okay but I also think I might have to skip going home to visit my family this year and maybe even a trip I had planned to go to a cousin's wedding unless I get a good deal on the flight or get a raise or something.

It's a real bummer but the thing is unless something changes I know I can't afford it. I didn't think I'd get hit with all these house expenses right off the bat. And the dental work last year whipped out my savings that I'd had for potential house expenses.

It's just putting out fire after fire since about October of last year. I'm tired and I'm broke. So broke that for the first time in years I had to put charges on the credit card for monthly bills not knowing when I'll be able to pay them. Juggling juggling. I'm one disaster away from breaking my back.

I'm hoping that in the coming month having some structure again will really let me know what I'm working with here.

I couldn't get to the bank last week to get the few bucks I have left over for grocery spending money after taking out bills, taxes, gas money and some savings. I started using the grocery card for the 3% cash back and then found myself using it too much. I bought that kitchen stuff, some groceries, household items and charged an insurance bill but then I spent an extra $50 dollars on coffee and snacks.) So that's gone too before $50 turns into $500. I hid it in the house. Don't want to shred it though since I have no emergency fund right now and I'd need something in case of emergency type deal.

While I'm still putting chunks of money toward my cc bill, I am also putting a small amount of money toward my emergency fund each week and when things stabilize it'll go up. I'd like to ideally make it go up a few bucks every month but we'll see how much money I have left over.

Things are going to be tight for a while but at least my expenses are finally somewhat fixed.

I know what the bills are going to be each month and I know I won't have a rent increase now that we have a mortgage. I just need to not get discouraged.

I've been here before and made it, I'll make it by again. I've already started planning meals so we can control food costs and eat much healthier. And that at least is a start.



Fridge died and ate all our food more cc debt to pay now :(

July 19th, 2014 at 05:36 am

Luckily we live in an apartment and luckily I hadn't done the food run yet but our fridge broke and warmed up what little food we did have. So after they replaced it I was about $30 in the red on my credit cards to replace some items (that I had just bought too).

Then I noticed that some Family Dollar's were closing so I thought it would be best to stock up on cheap things that we usually get there on sale as the one nearest to us is closing down. That put me another $80 in the red although it means not having to buy cleaning products and other household products for about a year or so. Also Target had a sale on paper products so another $40 in the hole but again I won't have to buy that stuff for months now.

Then today I realized I only have one pair of pants that fit and I decided for some reason that I deserve to eat out after a meeting with work. So between goodwill for pants and food out so now I am another $40 in the hole.

I can pay this from the next check but man did it add up quickly. Funnily I have no idea were my most of credit and debit cards are but know they are in the house or car somewhere as misc charges are not popping up. The only card I had left on my person has 5% gas points only right now so I was even more mad that I lost out on good points with the card that gets 1.5 per dollar although that might have helped curb my spending.

I did need pants though as my others are falling off. I didn't need to eat out but stuck to something cheap. I did splurge on groceries and household products but we should be set for a while so I'm not going to beat myself up about it. I do need to find my cards though. If I remember right I hid them from myself and boy did I do a good job because I have no idea where they are!

That temp gig fell through at my job so now I'm just waiting to hear if they have anything else. Right now I'm focusing on exercise, eating right and home cooking. I even made pizza dough last week when I normally would have spent $25 to order it out. Also stayed in my normal budget for gas groceries etc aside from the those few splurges. So I'm confident next week will go much better.

The at home coffee habit is harder to slide back into but after wasting almost $10 on out coffee I'm pretty much back on track.

Getting pants at the store that fit made me realize how much of my gut I had gained back which is great motivation to go back to the gym. I feel tired and stressed lately and other times over energized with no outlet so hopefully exercise will even that out. So just waiting to hear then about some more gainful employment. In the mean time I'm doing the best to be kind to myself while not breaking the bank and since those deficits are all taken care of, from now on sticking to the darn budget.

Car issues, keeping up with frugality and reflection on total debt

April 30th, 2014 at 10:31 pm

I got in a minor car accident this weekend. My car wouldn't stop in the parking lot for some reason so it hit another car. Such a bummer. Went in the store and found the person then exchanged info. I'll pay the deductible on the car insurance to keep my car checked out.

Right after that I called the dealership about getting my car fixed up for the recall and the parts are not in yet thats a bigger bummer.

Been feeling really down lately so work has been slow going. Started doing that thing where I internet browse items I cannot afford.

This time was a little different though. I realized because I have paid off as much as I have I am that much closer to actually affording those things if I wanted. That was kind of nice.

My grocery budget is busted so we are shopping out of the pantry until midnight tomorrow when I get paid. I have made a solid commitment to not touch the credit cards and have stuck to it. It is not fun but it is nice to know I don't owe anything to any body right now aside from my established loans and the bills. All extra money is going to the hotel stay for our trip and saving some spending money for the trip as well.

I wanted to pay the car insurance bill in full again but I'm not sure I can do it. I will need some help or have to take money out of the savings to close the gap. I think I might just do that it will be easier to cover things if I don't have the bill hanging over my head. The first priority is the car though. The car payment is much more a month to month than the insurance and if I'm not mistaken owning the car should even lower the insurance a bit.

It of course once again depends on the job situation. I am trying to commit to fitness as well so I have something else to focus on other than stress and it might mean I'll look good on the trip too.

I realized not that long ago when stressing out about debt that I have not only done a great deal in eliminating debt in the past year but have actually basically halved my debt since I got out of school and started working.

When I got out of school I had 7K worth of credit card debt, 21K worth of student loans and I got my car which was another 14K for a grand total of: 42K.

Now it is actually a little over 20K with no credit card debt (save for 400 on a 0% interest card that is being paid off each check), under 18K worth of student loans and a little over 2K on the car.

That made me feel really good. Not bad for a permanent temp!

Challenge completed

February 6th, 2014 at 10:00 pm

This week was great. Not only did I eat healthy but I also lost a pound. And have plenty of grocery money left over in my wallet.

I think I will just keep this up. I'm going to take it one week at a time though. One night the husband ordered in so I don't count that. That salad I made a week ago is almost gone now. Feels great not to have wasted that. And the veggies will be mostly going into one dish tonight. It feels quite great to be doing something good for myself and financially saving me a bundle of cash.

A week controlling what I can by eating in with healthy substitutions

January 29th, 2014 at 07:17 pm

There is nothing more that I can do about my job situation other than what I am already doing. It will end when it ends. Instead of obsessing and hoping that there will be more money all I can do is work with the money I know I have.

I finally just decided to allocate my remaining paychecks on:

1) Building a Dental Fund, I will have insurance soon but dental insurance is iffy and I have a lot of repairs. I'm thinking 800-1000 would be a good start.

and

2) If there's something left over, I'd like to pay off enough on the car (~$900) so that there wouldn't be negative equity should it require a repair that is not covered by my warranty and so costly that I'd just need to trade it in for a new one.

Now that that is settled in my mind I have realized that I have to take steps toward my next goal which is being more healthy in general. Since I've been somewhat successful at money and often tell myself that I can't afford food that I want to cook, I am going to call my own bluff.

For the next week beginning today I am going to eat in. If I conceive of something I'd like to eat out I will just make the at home equivalent instead ensuring that it has nutrients and protein. This is great financially because in most cases it will be about half the cost.

At the end of the week I should I have proved to myself that I can eat healthy for what I can afford comfortably for groceries.

Today I have already talked myself out of eating a croissant or cookie from a coffee shop by subbing it with a PB & J Sandwich. And I will be making a cheese pasta dish at home with a side of beans instead of ordering a little bowl of mac and cheese from Panera.

With this switch I have saved myself from spending about seven dollars and insured that I am not a hungry raving mad lunatic. I think this change might get addictive...Smile

An end to credit card debt/ 2nd time credit card debt free

October 15th, 2013 at 06:47 pm

Things are going well at my contract job and so it looks like it will be going on for a bit longer.

Originally I was just going to stockpile money but now I see this opportunity to pay off my credit card debt again and it is an amazing thing to be so close to. It means to me one less payment I have to make when my contract job goes away which can be used to groceries.

Last time I had to pay $50 toward my credit card minimum and so I had $20 left to eat groceries. It was pretty gosh darn rough.

If the job goes on even longer than one month then depending on how much money is saved I will probably put my extra money in savings to build my cushion savings from 3 months to 6 months and build my EF back to 3 grand from the 1300 that it is at right now.

This next month is not going to be easy by any means but I will be so happy to know that I paid off my debt. I was credit card debt free once before and it did not last. This time I know it will since I have money in savings and did not touch my credit cards at all for the 9 month bout of unemployment I had. Weirdly or maybe not so I tend to charge on my cards when I have money thinking I will catch up.

After last weeks epiphany I do not think I will feel the need to do that anymore. I have been staying in my spending limits not buying things that I cannot afford right now. It has been so nice. And I know changing my mentality will mean I will no longer be racking up my credit cards.

My car loan is still $1500 over the worth of the car at the moment however I will reevaluate what I would like to do about that once the credit card is done depending on how long my contract employment will last and how much money is in my EF and my account with 3 months worth of expenses.

It feels so good to be that much closer to achieving my goals than sitting there in the negative because I could not wait to have something I thought I deserved or that I thought I needed.

You can't always get what you want

October 4th, 2013 at 07:19 am

Today at midnight my one check came in. I had to take so much time off from my part-time job that I didn't even get a paycheck for it this week. I was so worried about this week because my regular paycheck from my contract job would also be short and I had to pay off the balance on CC1 (now clear), and I really wanted to make a large payment to CC2 (now marked as CC). I signed up for a pasta class at my local Sur La Table and I had two more in mind that I wanted to do. I wanted to do a run and another fun event. Plus I have a doctor's appointment coming up and an appointment to check out my car plus having to fill it with a full tank of gas.

I was sitting here racking my mind trying to figure out what possibly way I could do all these things and then it really hit me. I told myself: You don't need to do all of these things and you cannot afford it! You would have to charge it and since charging it would deter you from paying off the cc balance then you cannot afford it. Besides that you have a finite amount of time at your regular contract job. You do however need to refund your EF and you need to pay down your cc balance. You are just going to have to pick a few things and let the others go.

It's just hit me if I want something I will just charge it or try to save less etc to make it happen but right now having paid off two credit cards and being so close to paying off another I realize in order to stop having a balance I need to only get things that I can afford right now, at this moment. Yes there are things I could afford and I could charge them and pay them off by the end of the month but doing that would just take away from paying off a long standing balance on other card. The past two months I have screwed myself out of paying off that card and months before that I was building up an EF. Although I don't feel bad about the EF since if I had paid off the credit card the cost of my medical bills would have just negated what I paid off putting me right back where I started.

I'm just wondering why its been so hard to tell myself no before. Why I couldn't just put my foot down and stick to the plan. Maybe its the whole growing up thing. Maybe its the fact that after paying off my credit card debt once the easy way and now the hard way I've learned my lesson and can finally use them responsibly. Whatever it is I'm glad that it happened and that I am sticking to my guns. Yes I would like learn skills in cooking classes and do fun runs. But I can imagine how much happier I would be in that cooking class knowing its paid off (like the one I will be attending) or doing that run knowing that I was able to pay for it with a debit card than having it sit on a credit card with crazy interest.

I'll be much happier doing these things later when I know choosing to do something fun didn't impede my being able to make a payment that could help to wipe out my debt.

I'm so glad I'm finally sticking to a if you can't afford it than don't buy it plan.