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Archive for September, 2009

Weekend Shopping Trip - Frugal Family Fun

September 22nd, 2009 at 07:17 am

A few weekends ago we had a family adventure buying socks and underwear. I guess this is what the somewhat-frugal family does for fun.

On that day I was casually reading the newspaper ads for a local store. I saw a coupon for underwear, but it was men's underwear. And buy two get one free on socks, but I had just bought tights the day before (using basically the same coupon). I commented on both of these items. Mr H doesn't seem to read the ads, but apparently he needed both of those items. Suddenly we had a mission for the day. To these two coupons we added the 15% off apparel coupon (not to be combined with any other purchase) also in the paper and away we went.

When we got to the store Mr. H veered off to get his items, while I took Daisy and we headed to the ladies section. Zounds! There they had a buy one, get the second one half off coupon! Hmm, is 15% off a better deal, or buy one get the second one half off? Should I get two packages of three each or one package of five?

I actually stood there in the store, pen & paper in hand, and did the math. Yes, despite calculators I can still do arithmetic. *

Eventually Mr. H came looking for us, arms laden with socks and underwear. We were to meet in front of the electronics department and when we didn't show in a reasonable amount of time he came to the ladies' department. I'm pretty sure he grabbed what was applicable for his coupons and did not spend time calculating.

In the end, none of the above items was as good a deal as buying a package of the very same underwear marked as a clearance item. They were almost $1 less per pair than any of the above.




* Due in large part to homeschooling Daisy and tutoring last year. I had to practice my math facts.

Catching Up

September 17th, 2009 at 09:15 pm

I spent the financial part of my day balancing my check book and updating quicken.

Next steps are reconciling Checkbook One - tomorrow - and then figuring out how the money was spent during July, August and the first half of September - tomorrow and Saturday.

How's that for geeky excitement? Smile

What I Did on My Summer Vacation

September 16th, 2009 at 09:35 am

What I did with my summer vacation:

* Daisy finished school and we had to keep ourselves busy. And we did. We visited with friends, went places and did VBS.
* Daisy and I traveled. We were gone for two weeks, at the end of July/beginning of August. We went to my hometown, about two thousand miles from our current home. . . and in the middle of no where. It's seriously hard to get there except by car, even harder than in was in my youth. We had a great time. (For those curious, my mom paid for the trip.) Mr H doesn't really like to travel and he stayed home.
* Mr H and I had another fruitless discussion about retirement savings. He did remember our "appointment" but the discussion went about like the last one did. I am working on an alternate strategy.
* Mr H and I came to an agreement on and switched our health insurance. Our discussion opened with Mr H saying, "All of our options are okay with me except for this one with a Health Savings Account. I don't know anything about them and I don't want to learn about them." Should I laugh or cry? With gentle prodding Mr H did learn about Health Savings Accounts and that is the policy we now have. At the moment, the difference between what the old insurance cost and what the new insurance costs is going into the H S A.


What I didn't do:

* I didn't keep up on my budgeting. I think we did spend some extra money, but we didn't overspend Checkbook One. I had no budget for July or August. I don't really have one for September either, but again, we haven't overspent it. I will have that together before the end of the month. I have some plans in the works with regards to our food dollars so I'll need to get back into it.

Other developments:

* I have decreased my Starbucks trips dramatically. I always knew why I went - to have a positive social contact. (Yes, this is sad.) I decided over the summer that both Daisy and I need to get out more - see our friends more, to do more new things, and to go places regularly where we see the same people. The more social outings we have planned, the less need for Starbucks. Right now my friends are the moms of children who are friends with Daisy. Many of us are in the same larger, church-oriented social circle. Mr H has a much smaller need/interest in social contact; most of these outings occur while he is at work.