This has meant getting out of debt, couponing, saving six months living expenses, stockpiling food, and generally being frugal with our money. We also refinanced our house to drop our house payment in half. Now, this hasn't meant eating peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for six months, but rather seeking out sales and good deals.
My number one personal goal during these two years of one income is to keep our financial safety net in tact. Don't go into debt and to pay cash for school. I don't relish the idea of saving money for another two years to replenish our safety net. I would also like to expand our food storage to at least a year, while buying some quality camping gear for the family.
I'll be shifting some of my emphasis on this blog to cheap meals for my family. This is the biggest hit that we have taken on our budget. We used to have $320.00 budgeted for every two weeks for groceries, now it is $180.00. Heck, I'll just post our envelope cash budget. A big thank you to Dave Ramsey.
This is our old/new budget for two weeks:
=========== OLD ======== NEW
Mad Money.... $100--------------$80
This is an all cash system that we use, so no overspending.
I figure that our tax refund will be used for a summer vacation, and to plug any gaps that have developed in our finances. Ex: New tires, etc....
Here is our current situation. We get paid on Friday and have $12.00 in the grocery envelope. Today, we did make it to Chinamart to round out the frig.
I did spend about $20.00 to make homemade beef jerky last week, and they had Community Coffee on sale for $4.99. Nearby was a hanging coupon dispenser that had a dollar off coupon that dropped the price to $3.99 each, so I bought 12 bags. That kinda killed the weekly grocery budget this pay period. They also had chips on sale for $2 each, so I bought 12- 14 bags.
The rest of the week we have on the dinner menu:
Breakfast Night / Eggs / Pancakes
Grilled Chicken when brother, sister, and kids come over for dinner on Wednesday.
Lunch for Row and myself includes portioning out potato chips ( $2 for Lay's and Ruffles - on sale ) and peanut butter sandwiches. I take water while Row has a juice box and a fruit Rollup. The peanut butter is coming out of the stockpile, and we have
It does make it easier knowing that we have a large amount of food set back for this time. I really feel for people that can't make ends meet. Here are my photos of some of our storage.
|Drinks, Snacks, Mac & Cheese, Pasta, etc|
|Nuts and some of the longer term storage|
|8 cases of water, 8 seven gallon jugs not shown.|
|Sugar, Cornmeal, Rice, and Some Overflow.|
|Canned meat, Tang, Veggies, sauce, spices, and condiments.|
We are going to have to learn to make poor decisions.