Check out Paula Wethington’s blog Monroe on a Budget for tips for the newly single. I really love the one about not paying for a storage locker. Thanks, Paula!
Tag Archives: Finances
Last week I discovered that my beloved Luna bars were recalled due to the peanut butter issue. This was a crisis – I eat a Luna bar (Peanut Butter Cookie, to be precise) every day. I buy them by the box at Target and take them to work so I don’t have to think about breakfast in the morning. Well, I went to Target and they didn’t have any. They had Lemon Zest and other flavors, but not mine. Later in the day we checked the peanut butter recall online and discovered that my Luna bars were recalled. I don’t like any other power or energy bars, so I had to figure out what to eat in the morning. I grabbed a handful of instant oatmeal packets (that, I believe, have been in the pantry since the somebody came home from college, and I’m not sure that it wasn’t the older daughter… so they’ve been there a while) and brought them to school. I have a microwave in my classroom so it’s easy to heat the water. Know what? I ate those oatmeal packets every day and lost three pounds last week. Now, I can’t be sure it was the oatmeal, but I didn’t really do anything differently, so it’s worth continuing. And, I saved somewhere around $5.00 on Luna Bars and ate stuff that was already in the pantry.
I also didn’t have any 100-calorie packs of chips for my lunch, so I used snack size Ziploc bags and took 100 calories worth of the Roasted Gorgonzola Crackers from Trader Joe’s instead. If you haven’t tried those crackers, give them a shot. They’re really flavorful and you get a good amount for 100 calories. And they’re around $2.00 a box, which makes them waaaaay cheaper than pre-bagged 100-calorie packs. One box is good for lots of lunches (well, it is if you don’t eat them when you get home from work and you’re starving — not that I ever do that), which also saves on trips to the grocery store.
Trips to the grocery store – I just hate ‘em. Mr. Ex used to do that (I think he really loved it), but I do not love. More on that next week – how the frugal single avoids constant grocery store runs.
One more thing – did you know about the five-buck club from Kerasotes Theaters? You can sign up online and get a card that gets you a ticket for $5.00 at selected shows. The catch is that you can only buy one ticket per card, but that’s perfect for the frugal single! Since that’s the theater that I usually go to on Saturday to meet girlfriends, I’m lovin’ it. They even send you an email wth participating theaters and times.
I’m lucky because I know that I can probably support myself, but, still, I’m nervous about “enough.” You know, enough for the bills, enough for spending, enough for groceries. Ahem, and perhaps manicures. For sure manicures (and I pretty much go to the Red Door, to boot). Enough.
January is the first month that our finances are separate. So, this month, I can really get a handle on what I will spend to support my home.
To that end, I am designating January cash month. What that means is that I’m taking cash every week for my spending (as opposed to debiting or charging). I’m also writing everything down as I spend it, so that at the end of the month I can really see what I spend. I’m not doing it so much to curtail spending (not that that would be a BAD thing), but rather to help with my budgeting process going forward.
Here’s the recap since Sunday:
Dinner out at CPK (yum, yum): $15.50 (really; we split the Chicken pesto pizza and I had soup, my friend had salad. No beverages)
2 framed pictures at HomeGoods: $37.00 (an extravagance, but I have to make the house MY house and he took some pictures when he moved out)
Parking at the hospital when I took my mother to the audiologist: $7.00 (do I take that out of her money? I don’t have the heart)
Walgreens (stuff for my mother – again… take it out of her money?) $9.00
Target (2 cartons of Diet Coke – truly a necessity, and a bottle of hair gel – also a necessity): $10.75
Stamps $8.75. Now I don’t generally mail much, but I had to mail thank you notes for Hanukkah gifts from students. Bad news – had to debit since the machines at the post office don’t take money. Oh well
Boy, it adds up, doesn’t it? I don’t have a whole lot left until the weekend. I figure if I always take the week’s money on Sunday, it’ll really curtail my weekend spending. I may have to reevaluate, but it’s a beginning to financial independence and security.
What’s your method?