our february budget report
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The Picky Pinchers’ February Budget Report

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Itโ€™s time for another budget report, Picky people! See how our expenses looked during February and where we plan to go in March. You can read January’sย budget report here.

Phew! February flew by in a blur. It sucks that it’s such a short month; I always want to do more and then suddenly it’s March.

Let’s see what we spent in February!

MORTGAGE: $1,086.50

Slow ‘n’ steady with our mortgage payment. We’ll start eliminating our mortgage after we pay off our student loans in 2018.ย Until then, we’ll pay the minimums on the mortgage.

I have to avoid looking at our monthly mortgage breakdown. Of our entire mortgage payment, only $200 of it goes toward the loan principal. Ouchhh. No wonder it takes 30 years to pay these things off with the minimums.

INTERNET: $ 106.64

We budgeted $110 for internet, so I guess I should be thrilled to save $3.36 this month.

Oh joy! Thanks Spectrum (aka Speculum)!

If anyone knows of super-fast internet providers that suck less than Spectrum and are cheaper, let me know about them!

We have the fastest internet package available and the speed has been okay. My issue is that I hate, hate, hate Spectrum and am getting to the point where I don’t want to give them my money.

Grumble, grumble.

get the free 30 day frugal cleanse

PHONES: $76.06

Our phones were about on par with last month’s costs. It looks like Mr. Picky Pincher is permanently out of luck with wifi access at work, so we’ll pay a little more for data usage from now on.

But hey, this is still leaps and bounds cheaper than our bills when we had AT&T and Verizon. We used to pay over $200 a month for the same damn service.

Also, if you want to try out Google FI, you can try signing up through my referral link. It’ll give you a $20 credit to your account, which means you get a pretty nifty discount off your first month. I also get a $20 discount on my phone bill, so everybody wins. ๐Ÿ™‚

I’ve been happy with Google FI. I know the phone selection with them is “meh,” but it hasn’t been too bad. The best part is that you can purchased a used Nexus 5X on eBay or Amazon instead of paying full price through Google.

It was a pain to dump our contracts, but in the long run we saved money and sanity. I’m glad to be rid of a phone contract. Ahhhh.


CAR PAYMENT: $345.36

Ayuuup, we still have a car payment. We intend to pay the minimum each month until this sucker is paid off in 2 – 3 years.

Learn more about our car history here.

INSURANCE: $145.23

Our monthly insurance costs are pretty steady. This includes our homeowner’s and car insurance since they’re bundled.

I did hear insurers can offer discounts if you pay your bills once a year instead of monthly. I think I’ll call our insurer this week to see if we qualify for this discount.

If you’re curious, this is how I lowered our car insurance rates.

UTILITIES (TRASH, WATER, ENERGY): $51.43

Another banner month for utility bills! I wish it could stay this way forever. Ahhh.

The glorious thing about living in Texas is that the winters are remarkably mild. That means our energy bills are really reasonable right now.

In fact, this month we paid $0 for energy. Our energy provider offers a rebate of up to $80 on our bill since we own a Nest thermostat. Next month we’ll see a bill again, but I’m not complaining about a discount. We’ll also get a modest discount if we use the Nest during the summer months–an infamous time of year for Texas utility bills.

Our trash bill is paid quarterly, so we didn’t have a trash bill this month.

The only utility bill listed here is our water bill, which I’m trying not to be salty about. Still seems awfully high for a water bill, but that’s what you get when there’s a lack of competition.

Sigh.

GROCERIES: $315.68

We budgeted $350 for groceries this month, so we’re under budget by $34.32! This is an amazing feat, especially when I think back to our $1,000/mo grocery bill two years ago.

Yeeeeesh.

There are a lot of reasons our bill is so low:

  • We cook at home and established a weekly restaurant allowance (more on that below).
  • We cook our own pantry staples.
  • We bought bulk meat.
  • We make bulk freezer meals.
  • We eat more fresh produce, rice, and beans.

There’s a lot that goes into our grocery and meal-planning strategy. I go over the strategiesย more in depth (along with 28 days of meal plans and recipes)ย in my eBook on Amazon if you’d like to check it out.


TAKE OUT: $158.20

We budgeted $200 for take out, so we’re under budget here by $41.80. This is insaneย because we’re notorious for grabbing food to-go.

We were able to bring down our take out expenses this month by:

  • Creating a $25/week budget for restaurant meals. Obviously we went over this budget (mostly because of my birthday–oops), but it gave us flexibility and structure. I think this is more effectiveย than telling ourselves, “DO NOT EAT OUT AT ALL. YOU WILL SUFFER.” There’s something about creating a hard-and-fast rule that makes me want to break it. ๐Ÿ™‚ Anyhoo, this is much more effective for keeping us within our budget.
  • Cooking freezer meals. I used to make fun of freezer prep meals because they looked disgusting.ย But now we’ve found meals we adore and that freeze well, which eliminates the need to pick up Chik-Fil-A. And that means more money in our pockets. If you’re not sure how to do freezer cooking, check out our weekly What’s For Dinner? post. It shows everything we ate during the week and is a great resource for tasty frozen meals (that aren’t soup!).

MEDICAL: $48.22

Nothing too crazy here, just a copay and a prescription.

GAS: $163.82

We’re over-budget on gas by $63.82. We didn’t go on any trips, but Mr. Picky Pincher did quite a lot of driving in the truck to pick up a quarter-cow we bought last week.

Oh well!

STUDENT LOANS: $3,599.69

Student loans aren’t really a cost since we’re building our net worth by paying them off. But I still think it’s helpful to include this here as an expense so you can see where our money goes.

We’re only able to pay this much on our student loans because all of our savings goes on the loans. We created a savings cushion before we began paying off student loans, so there’s no need for us to put money into savings each month.

For an in-depth guide on how we were able to pay so much on our student loans, sign up for our free 30-Day Frugal Cleanse. It’ll give you juicy advice to drastically cut expenses to pay off debt.

OTHER: $1,115.65

Weeeeeelp.

We all knew this was coming, didn’t we? We budgeted $950 for Other expenses and we’re over budget by $165.65.

Hyurf.

We budgeted more this month because we anticipated more expenses.


Here are a few notable February expenses:

  • Beer supplies:ย Mr. Picky Pincher bought $200 of supplies for beer-making. While it’s an upfront expense, we expect to save money in the long run by making our own beer. This is the kit he bought to get started. He made an amber ale first and now is brewing a stout. Yummo!
  • Beer: Since it takes a month for beer to brew, we still stocked up on beer this month. Instead of buying beer as we needed/wanted (the difference is debatable around here!) each week, we bought it all at the beginning of the month. It cost $87. That sounds like a lotta money, but buying one large batch of beer cut our monthly beer costs by $50. We expect to see this go down as Mr. Picky Pincher’s home brews take off.
  • Presents: We have a lot of March birthday girls in our family, so we did a lotta birthday shopping. I like to shop the month ahead so I don’t feel rushed, so that’s why these expenses were added to our February budget.
  • My birfday: Sooo my birthday was a more expensive affair than it should have been. Agh. We spent $50 at a restaurant for lunch and $4 on bundt cakes (no regrets). It was fun and money well-spent, but I was hoping for it to be more frugal.
  • Making Sense Of Affiliate Marketing Course: This was my birthday present to myself. ๐Ÿ™‚ I’m looking for better ways to turn this blog into a full-time gig. I also would LOVE to remove banner ads from the site to improve your experience. And that means learning how to do better affiliate marketing to keep the lights on around here. While my background is in marketing and I heartily chuckled at the idea of learning marketing from a random person on the internet, I learned A LOT from this course. I did sign up to be an affiliate for the course, but I would recommend it even if I weren’t an affiliate. It’s a great way to learn to monetize your site in a genuine, non-spammy way. Sign up through this referral link and see what all the hubbub is about. ๐Ÿ™‚


TOTAL EXPENSES: $3,612.79

TOTAL EXPENSES WITH STUDENT LOANS: $7,212.48

SAVINGS RATE: 52%

COST PER MEAL: $2.93

MArch GOALS

February was another month of fails and wins. I’m very proud to be under budget on food for the first time in … ever? Maybe?

Food is a tough expense for us Picky eaters, so I can’t stress how freakin’ stoked I am to have a normal grocery bill. Woop woop! I would love to continue the trend of being under budget on food in March.

We’d also like to keep our Other expenses under $500 next month. This budget category is the next great frontier. Often our purchases aren’t “fun things” that blow the budget, so we might have to get creative with cutting this category. Hmmm.

Luckily March is a three-paycheck month for me, so that means we’ll put more on our student loans next month. I can’t complain about that. ๐Ÿ™‚

We want to know: How was your February? Were you a Frugal Fergus or a Spendy Susie?


56 comments on “The Picky Pinchers’ February Budget Report

  1. Unfortunate about the wifi at work for Mr. Picky Pincher, hopefully there’ll be some other alternative soon.

    Looks loke you still have a pretty good savings rate this month despite the upticks in costs. Keep up the great work!

    1. Ugh, I’m hopeful about the wifi but it’s been a few months now. Boooooo. And thank you! It was one of our pricier months for sure, so I’m hoping we can rein in those extra side expenses during March.

  2. I feel your pain on the internet bills! It is crazy the amount you pay for so-so service. Congrats on the food/restaurant bills, that is a really tricky part of any budget.

    We are currently bulking up our savings cushion so that we can start dumping a lot of money on our car loans and student loans, and hopefully have all of them done by the end of 2018.

    You should do a post highlighting your freezer meals, I’ve been going through your “What’s for Dinner” posts, but sometimes it is hard to tell what you are cooking from the freezer vs. what you are cooking fresh.

    1. Ugh, the internet bill ticks me off! We need more competition in our area to keep the rates more reasonable. Oh wow, congrats on that savings cushion! I know how hard it is to build it and then pay off debt, so you’re doing splendidly!

      And thank you for the suggestion! I’ll start highlighting what’s frozen and what’s fresh so it’s clearer. ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. My February was pretty good. It was bonus time at the company I work for and I was able to save more than I usually do. With it, I’m paying down some debt and investing in my IRA.

    March will be an awesome month! I might do a staycation and work on an ebook!

    P.S. At the end of your post, it says January

    1. Man, I wish I got bonuses. ๐Ÿ˜‰ Great job using that bonus for good and not evil! Let me know if you make an Ebook; I’d love to read it!

  4. You did a great job on coming under budget in groceries and takeout, and a great job of paying down your student loans too!! And I think your bday expenditures were very acceptable. ๐Ÿ™‚ Keep up the good work, and happy belated birthday!! I’ve been out of the loop with a busy IRL schedule so haven’t been visiting blogs much!

    1. Thank you! I feel ya on the IRL schedule being all-consuming. Aghhh. Hopefully we can make March even bettah. ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. I agree; it’s definitely expensive. She offers coupons on it once every couple of months so I waited for a $30 off code. I got mine for about $170 instead of $200. I used blog earnings to pay for it, though, so that lessened the sting.

        1. Exactly! I kicked myself though, because she offered an even better $50 off coupon in January that I didn’t go for. Ugh.

          I spend all blog proceeds on the blog itself so it’s not a big money-making operation yet, of course. But it’s great because I can grow the following and then increase the earnings. I recently was able to buy OptimizePress to build lead pages and that’s been a game-changer (it wasn’t cheap though).

  5. Nice work and it’s amazing to see how you’ve turned on the Rocky music to pay off the student debt – those funds dwarf the other categories and will be a welcome source of other debt payoff and investments when the student debt is gone.

    And internet service is evil, agreed!

    1. Oh ho ho ho! Someone should do a FIRE version of the Rocky song. It’s so nice to see our red net worth number slooooooowly get less horrible each month, so I can’t complain. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  6. I need to start taking notes on you grocery habit, I haven’t tallied ours yet, but I’m sure its much higher. Our February was a bit of a let down, as we had a car inspection $359, filled the oil tank $415, and paid our 6 month auto premium $540. Those put a damper on our savings.
    I agree, your internet bill sucks, I downgraded to Comcast’s slowest speed, for 39.99 and we can stream video and surf the web no problem.

    1. We didn’t used to track it either and I was honestly shocked when our bill was $1,000. Eek. Ouch! Your inspections are pricey–ours are $15 since our city doesn’t mandate exhaust tests (bad for the environment but good for our bank account). Sorry about all those expenses. It really, really sucks when you don’t even spend your money on “fun” stuff. Ugh. Here’s to a better March, right? ๐Ÿ™‚

  7. Love your blog, good luck on making it a fulltime gig! I hate my internet provider too, maybe that’s just a thing.๐Ÿ˜‰ We have a 15 yr mortgage but plan on paying it off in about half that time. I highly recommend 15 years for anyone who can swing it.

    1. Thank you! It would give me more time to write more fun stuff, that’s for sure. ๐Ÿ˜‰ Great job with the mortgage!! It’s no small feat to pay that off, but man, I can only imagine the sense of relief not to have a mortgage.

  8. Yay, low food spending! We’ve got to rein that in this month for sure. Have thought a lot about Michelle’s course; maybe one day I’ll try it! Aw, those dang “other” expenses! Those seem to add up soooo fast!

    1. The course is pretty good, but it’s definitely expensive. I waited until I could self-fund it with blog earnings so it didn’t affect our budget. Grahhh, those “other” expenses get me every time! I see the big number and think, “My, my, what did I buy? A Rolex?” And it’s always something horribly boring but necessary. Ugh.

  9. Man, Spectrum is having their way with you. ๐Ÿ™‚ You need google fiber to come to your area. Top of the line internet fot $70. We have the next leg down at $50 a month which gives us all the speed we need. Plus there’s no surcharges and random fees tacked on. Just a flat $50.

    That’s an impressive chunk of change you’re throwing at student loans. Anything going toward investments?

    1. I can’t tell you how much I’ve prayed to the Google gods to have them install Google Fiber here. I use Google FI for my phone service and I’m really happy with Google’s service. I would happily give them more of my money if I could!

      Mr. Picky Pincher has a 401(k) that offers an employer match, so he invests there. I also put $200/month into my Roth IRA (no employer match since I’m a contractor). We plan to invest more heavily once we’re done with the student loans and working on the mortgage.

  10. My car insurance is every 6 months, and it’s pretty good discount to pay it then vs monthly. (> $100 vs paying by check monthly, or ~$40 vs electronic transfer monthly). I also only have to think about it 2 x a year. That’s part of why I don’t want to lower my savings amount to put more into my 401k just now. My renters insurance used to be annually & now it’s homeowner’s.
    My Feb was a little more expensive on car travel, but it’s the last planned 2x a month visit to family for now. 1x each planned for March & April, which is typical. It’s tolls and an extra tank or two of gas each trip.
    This month I am doing air travel, with the ticket paid for in Jan. This afternoon I’ll set up parking. I’ve found off airport is less expensive for this airport location. I’m visiting my mom, so no hotel or need to rent a car. We do have a couple ‘expensive’ activity options, but my mom suggested zip lining…that’s big. ๐Ÿ™‚
    Looks like you had a great Feb! Here’s to keeping the good habits rolling into March.

    1. That’s wonderful! I did call our insurer to ask for an annual premium for a discount, but they don’t offer it. Womp womp. I did learn I can get a discount by taking a drug and alcohol awareness course, so I’ll probably sign myself and Mr. Picky Pincher up for that. It never hurts to ask!

      It sounds like you have some great travels planned! I know the costs suck but travel is so worth it. ๐Ÿ™‚

  11. I’m always impressed with how much you put towards student loans each month. How much longer until they’re completely paid off?

    February was a good month for me, but it helps that it’s short and work is typically really busy so I don’t have much energy to go out and spend money ๐Ÿ™‚ March through May will be different with some big bills due (e.g. insurance, property taxes, etc) so we’ll see how it goes.

    To be honest, I’m just ready for some sunshine and warmer temperatures. It’s only 28 degrees right now!

    1. Thank you! My loans are paid off in May ($25k). Mr. Picky Pincher’s will be paid off by early 2018 ($45k).

      I think the best way to avoid spending money is to keep busy. Idle hands are the Devil’s handiwork, right? ๐Ÿ˜‰ 28 degrees?!?!?! It’s been in the 80s here. We barely got any winter at all, which means the bugs will be really horrible this summer. Oy.

  12. Good job on staying under most of your spending goals, it’s not always the easiest thing to do. ๐Ÿ™‚

    I had to turn on the AC when I got home yesterday because inside the house was a muggy 80, as we’ve had the system on off the last few weeks. We’ve had some awesome times with keeping the windows open and getting fresh air in the house recently though.

    We use Entouch for internet and have a deal of $45 for 115 mbs and when it’s up in a year or whenever, we can return to 45 mbs for the same price, so yeah, not too worried. Unfortunately, they’re just around Houston currently. ๐Ÿ™ They’ve got good prices and reliability – knock on wood. ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. It’s hot down there for y’all, too, though right? It’s been in the 70s – 80s here, so the A/C has been on most days. I haven’t heard of Entouch, but I’ll look out for them moving northward! I’m so, so done with Spectrum. Ugh.

  13. Happy belated birthday! You spent a WHOLE FIFTY BUCKS on a birthday lunch? I’m shocked! ๐Ÿ™‚ Really, you are doing so well. That grocery bill is wonderful. Give yourself a pat on the back!

    We pay our insurance in one clip and I think the savings is low, maybe $20. But I like not having to budget for it monthly.

    1. Thank you! Hahahaha, that $50 felt like a knife! I was a sillyhead and even ordered an appetizer. Hee hee hee.

  14. Don’t be too hard on yourselves, I’d say it looks like a good month for the PickyPinchers. You’re absolutely pounding away at those student loans, very impressive! Is the savings rate you calculated excluding those “expenses” (loan amortisation)? If so, you have not a care in the world.

    Oh, and despite being from halfway across the world, I’ve actually spent a few months in Texas (Houston, no less!). You’ve got the best time of the year coming up now, don’t you? Perfect temperatures, humidity’s not too bad. At least, that’s what it felt like to a wildling from north of the wall ๐Ÿ™‚ Be sure to enjoy it!

    1. It’s not too shabby of a month! I’m particularly happy with our food costs, but I’d love to be under budget in each category. ๐Ÿ˜‰ Oh I wish our savings were IN ADDITION to the student loans. Then we’d be making bank! But no, sadly, all of our monthly savings is the big student loan payment. We save all month and put every extra penny towards the student loans at the end of each month. That’s why the figure usually varies each month.

      Man, it’s been pretty hot this “winter”! I’m not in Houston, but it’s definitely pretty steamy here too. Ugh. In February the coldest it got was maaaaybe 40 degrees Fahrenheit, which is just silly. I know the summer is going to be horrible since we didn’t get much of a winter, but I guess I’ll enjoy the mild weather while it’s here. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    1. I think Mr. Picky Pincher would wholeheartedly agree with you! ๐Ÿ˜‰ Not too shabby, eh? Every penny of that went on the student loans, but damn does it feel good to get those out of the way. ๐Ÿ™‚

  15. Wow, in your “Other stuff” category, it was quite high! O _O I thought I was the only naughty one in this category in February, haha. xD;;;

    I regret one purchase yesterday though. I bought an exercise mat that was not a yoga mat and here I want to try yoga now, but skipped on the proper mat for it. Dx My poor heart… ๐Ÿ™ Likewise, it was only $13..00 and I can always go back and get another one, but I bought it with my savings money, darn it. Dx Oh well, since I used it on my bare back, I’m stuck with it. : / Maybe I’ll try it with yoga and see how it goes…

    I was mostly a Frugal Fergus last month with the exception of Dollar Tree purchases… I found I bought too much last month from there, so that will change promptly next month! Dx Besides that, it looks like I was mostly good, haha. ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. Don’t remind me, hahahaha! In all fairness it was mostly stuff that’ll return our investment over time, so I’m not too salty about it. Can you not use the exercise mat for yoga? If anything I think it would be more comfy since those are thicker. I think you’ll be okay. ๐Ÿ™‚ You can also use it for ab workouts or pushups. I used to have one too and I used it for both bootcamp classes and yoga.

      Psh, Dollar Tree is frugal Mecca! I have to keep my hands to myself when I shop there too. It’s so easy to buy stuff there!

  16. Heehee, I was a Spendy Susie! I had a friend visiting and took her out for dinner and drinks. It was super fun though, and I love spending time with her. No regrets! What I DO regret is paying $1100 out of pocket for my son’s wisdom teeth removalโ€ฆwhen if I’d waited one more week it would have been covered by my FSA. Grrr. However, I really wanted to get it done before he went back to school so he wouldn’t stress about the recovery.

    It must feel AMAZING to be making those kind of payments toward your student loan debts. That is incredible. It’ll be gone before you know it!

    1. Ooooh, I love juicy deets! Oh noooooo! I’m so sorry about the FSA snafu. I did have friends who had their surgeries done during school and it was tough catching up with schoolwork, so I think that was still a good move for your son. Is there any way you can submit a receipt to your FSA for reimbursement?

  17. So jealous of that energy bill! Here in Connecticut February is horrible for energy. My total between electricity and heating oil was around $500! Ouch.

    Also, I hear you on the 30 year mortgage. I got a 15 year mortgage around four years ago, and the difference between interest payments on a 30 year vs. a 15 year is absolutely amazing. Our payments didn’t change at all because we went from a 5.375% rate down to 2.75%. But the amount that went toward principal changed from maybe $300 a month all the way to $1200 a month. It was so drastic that I had a tax issue the first year (oops). But I’d rather keep that money myself instead of sending it to the bank in interest!

    1. Oh, come August you won’t be so jealous, hahahaha. We probably pay the same annually as Northerners, but just during different times of the year. Our summers will literally kill you, so A/C is *not* optional. And that means some hefty electric bills, unfortunately.

      Did your 15-year mortgage mean you got a better interest rate? Our rate is actually pretty low (around 3% I think with an FHA), so we won’t refinance, but I’m just curious if the shorter term is more favorable.

      Oh dang, I didn’t think about the tax implications, so that’s good to keep in mind.

      1. Yes, when I refinanced (in 2013) the 30 year was at a 3.5% rate and the 15 year was 2.75%. I had looked at both debated a lot which one to get, but finally decided on the 15. I could have “paid a 30 like a 15” but the math doesn’t actually work that way when the interest rate is higher.

        And A/C isn’t optional here in the summer either – we get 100 degree days and tons of humidity! The joy of New England ๐Ÿ˜›

        1. That’s good to know! I’m kicking myself for not looking at the 15-year options for a better interest rate. Urf. Oh my gosh, I didn’t know it got so hot up there! You might as well live in Texas, hahahaha.

  18. Something I’ve learned from reading all these personal finance and retiring early blogs, is that utilities and food are WAY cheaper in the states than Canada. SO MUCH CHEAPER!

    1. Oh no, I’m sorry! How bad are your utilities? In all fairness ours were super low this month, but they should go back to normal in March (ugh). We still have it really good in the U.S., so thanks for the reminder that I should complain less. ๐Ÿ˜‰

      1. Our utilities usually (for the winter in Canada) are about 50 for heat, 90 for hydro (on a frugal month) and 60 for water. Then add phone and internet which are not cheap here either, we are just beginning to get more competition that is finally giving more price options.

        1. Oh dear, I’m so sorry! I’m hoping the increase in competition will drive down the prices. But it sucks so badly when one company has a strangle-hold on your wallet. Ugh.

  19. When I read “…Spectrum (aka Speculum)”, all I could think about was that wonderful annual doctor’s appointment that us women get the honor of having. Maybe TMI for the men that may read this, but a very real thing..hahaha!

    Awkward humor aside, our February was so-so. Our grocery spending was a little high because I brought my husband and daughter along on a grocery trip with me!

    1. It’s funny because I’m not the only lady who calls them speculum, hahahaha! I don’t know a single woman who doesn’t shiver when they hear that word lol. That’s how much I hate Spectrum. ๐Ÿ™‚

      Hahaha! I’ve noticed we get more “necessities” when Mr. Picky Pincher deviates from the grocery list, too. Hmmmmm. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    2. Mrs. Daisy, like your quirky humor, checked out your blog, but how do u comment? I didn’t see a way and your contact form isn’t there either. Sorry to use Mrs. PP’s blog for this but thought u might not know.

  20. Our food budget is a losing battle most months, though I’ve been able to get our grocery budget down to mostly reasonable amounts. I’m really impressed with how you’ve reigned it in this month! Especially with a birthday! (Also-HAPPY BIRTHDAY!)

    I am excited to hear about the Mr’s home brew adventures!

    Fun story-I bought a 24 pack of beer from Sam’s because it was a better price buying in bulk. The cashier looked at the beer, looked and me and said “Is this all for you?” And I looked her straight in the eye and said “Yes.” It was so…weird. I think she was trying to make sure I wasn’t buying for minors, but it’s not like I was going to drink all 24 before I left the parking lot.

    1. Thank you! Man, our food costs have NEVER been this good. I went over the numbers five times to make sure they were accurate because I couldn’t believe it.

      Hee hee hee hee! It’s funny that a Sam’s employee would think it strange to buy beer in bulk. Like, hello? “Yes, I am going to chug these 24 beers and collapse on the spot.” Hahaha, oh some people. This is unrelated but once a cashier tried to card me for buying white wine vinegar. It’s so weird trying to tell someone that something is, in fact, not alcohol.

  21. Ah the “Other” category!

    One resolution after tracking my spending for a year was to break down my similar “Misc” category, or at least be more specific with remembering what I bought.

    The sad thing is it’s usually just stuff for the house or a book or something one-off like that but seeing that big glob of money at the end of the month (or year) can be a little terrifying.

    1. That’s exactly what we want to do. We put all of our “household” expenses into this category (soap, paper towels, etc.) but we want to get more granular with it. It’s tough to cut expenses if you don’t know where your money is going, after all. Isn’t it so awful that little non-fun purchases stack up so much? Ughhhh.

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