Tuesday, January 31, 2017

January Numbers Are In

This is the first real "Numbers are in" post I've done in a long time. Spending was pretty high this month BUT at least I accomplished my goal of tracking it all again.

Food grocery spending was a bit higher than normal (we tend to average $12 a day). There certainly wasn't any food stocking up done but I think we ate a bit healthier than normal. That always raises costs a bit especially when I have to factor in my husband randomly bringing home healthy items here and there that cost a pretty penny. Ugh, he does not know how to be frugal!

I don't think we did bad at all in the food out category.

The pets category consisted of one bag of dog food (with a free one in tow). Since I don't include medical in the average daily spending I have NOT been tracking our eldest dog's insulin and syringes expenses here.

I did some stocking up in the toiletries and cleaning categories. The stock up does raise spending for this month but will help in months to come.

And I had to buy new pants for work (in the clothing category) and I picked up a few really good deals on clothes for the kiddo.

Food Groceries $397.27: an average of $12.82 a day
Food out $73.76: an average of $2.38

Pets $29.15: an average of 94 cents a day
Stuff $12.93: an average of 42 cents a day
Toiletries $24.93: an average of 80 cents a day
Clothing $36.87: an average of $1.19 a day
Cleaning and house supplies $65.78: an average of $2.12 a day

Average daily spending for 2017: $20.67

It was a pretty good month here at the $12 a day household but goodness it was an expensive one (more like $21 a day) and it's pretty hard to believe that it'll be February already tomorrow. Wow!

Monday, January 30, 2017

February Plans (Just slow down mommy)

Okay, not really plans. This is a goals post.
I'm hoping to fill February with new. New places, new food, new activities, new hobbies, new crafts, new books, new words... okay, I could probably just keep typing forever. My goal for what always seems like the coldest month of the year is all-things-new; to add some spice to the winter.

I actually have a three point checklist of things to focus on this month. Each day this month I'd like to ask:

  1. Did I experience something new today? What was it? (February focus)
  2. Did I laugh today? What made me laugh? (January focus)
  3. Did I rush my son? Do either of us seem less stressed? (Something I want to work on)
As far as question number three is concerned I've noticed that I'm regularly telling my kiddo to "hurry up." Regularly, like A LOT. I'm seemingly always rushing him along. In noticing this I've realized that A.) I have very little patience and B.) I'm teaching my kid to always be rushing. He definitely operates on his own timeline (as all children do) but when I really stop and observe his timeline I actually like it more than mine. His way of doing things includes more fun, more savoring, more joy, and quite frankly I don't want to "instruct" any of that out of my four year old.

In February along with noticing laughter, and focusing on new, I want to just slow down. I think I might actually like February this year.

Sunday, January 29, 2017


Written by four year old little Abe:

Wonka and his friends Mump, Munk, Nunk, and Moniegulungie, they went to space to find some snacks to eat. They didn't find snacks. They just found humans. Then Wonka and his friends said, "Ooh, let's try to eat them." 
The humans said, "What do we do?!?!" and then someone found a bomb in their pocket and then they threw it at the monsters. But the monsters didn't blow up. They even got more madder. One of the other humans found a sword and he stabbed it in the monster. But the monster even got more mad. Then there was a huge war between the humans and the monsters Wonka, Mump, Munk, Nunk, and Moniegulungie. 
The humans got a big stick and they threw it at Wonka and his friends. The monsters got more and more madder than last time and then the monsters threw the huge stick at the humans. Then the humans died and the monsters ate them. Wonka and his friends Mump, Munk, Nunk, and Moniegulungie said, "Yum!" 
The End

Transcribed almost word for word with only a few "and then"s omitted.

I think the moral of the story is that you can't fight off monsters with a big stick?

Saturday, January 28, 2017

January Goals

The new year is already aging. The month of January is drawing to a close even though I'm not so sure I've accepted that it's 2017 already and not still 2016. My goal for the month/ first of twelve new year's resolutions was simply to laugh more. What a neat and enriching goal it's been. 

The list I compiled for ways to focus on laughter and to try and laugh more was as follows:
  1. Read funny stories, funny poems. We've read funny stories each day. I'm really enjoying this part of the goal.
  2. Watch funny movies. Not many were watched but this did add laughter to the month.
  3. Tickle regularly. I might have tickled little Abe less than normal but there was still tickling and giggles and this is towards the top of things that cause laughter in my life.
  4. Tell jokes. Little Abe's jokes don't really make sense but I still laugh. I tell him jokes that I think are funny and he doesn't get them and doesn't laugh. This wasn't a very effective strategy for laughter.
  5. Discover/ sing silly songs. Or sing normal songs in a silly way... either way we laughed.
  6. Document on the blog one moment of laughter each day. I thought I'd blogged a bit too much about funny things and backed off. I probably could have kept it up though just for my own pleasure. It's funny how sometimes we forget to use our blogs for ourselves, when at least for me, that's why I blog in the first place.
  7. Remind myself to laugh. I totally did this and as silly as it is and as odd as it felt it was a good practice. I laugh in my head so often that I miss the physical benefit of laughing out loud. I did remind myself to laugh throughout the month. Who would have ever thought that laughing is something you can practice/ get better at.
  8. Take photos of laughter. I was looking forward to this idea a lot but my camera is on it's way out, like not working properly at all and I basically took no photos this month.
  9. Make time to be less serious. I think I did this, less intentionally but still I did it.
  10. Read a book about laughter. I read two books containing at least bits about laughter.

I've pretty much already noted the results of this goal. I feel that noticing laughter all month was incredibly enriching and impactful. This January, a very gloomy, very cold, usually somewhat heavy feeling month was filled with much more joy then I'm used to. I seemed to delight in little things (something I strive to do) much more regularly and easily then I generally do in the midst of winter. Normally by now winter depression is beginning to set in and I'm starting to fearfully dread February's arrival. I'm not scared of February this year. I'm kind of looking forward to it. Haha, I feel like something is wrong with me.

In conclusion January's goal was a big fat success.

Monday, January 23, 2017


I just wrote a long post that was all: heavy, heavy, gloomy, gloom, gloom.

And then I said, "nah." and drafted it.

As the years pass, I am coming more and more to understand that it is the common, everyday blessings of our common everyday lives for which we should be particularly grateful. They are the things that fill our lives with comfort and our hearts with gladness -- just the pure air to breathe and the strength to breath it; just warmth and shelter and home folks; just plain food that gives us strength; the bright sunshine on a cold day; and a cool breeze when the day is warm.
-Laura Ingalls Wilder

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Weekend warmth

Our spot on the globe, a very chilly spot this time of year and statistically gloomy spot all winter is right now experiencing a lovely little warm spell (we're said to have less sun throughout the winter months than most places on the planet AND this winter has been recorded as having had less sun then normal... imagine living under a very cold rock for five months). It's been extremely rainy for days but the warmth yesterday and relative warmth today are wonderfully invigorating. My little man spent a good deal of time digging in (and flinging) mud in the backyard yesterday. It's funny to think of him outgrowing this favorite activity of his but it's inevitable. In the mean time I rather enjoy watching him play in mud. Hmm, maybe he'll be an excavator or archaeologist and dig in mud for a living.

I've been getting along much better this winter than most. Partly because of the job change (it's amazing what walking away from misery can do for a person) but I like to think it's also partly because I'm actually focusing on being happy. It's also amazing what concentrating on a thing can do for a person.

We'll spend the remainder of this weekend relaxing and at the top of my list for today we'll be getting outdoors again. Hopefully there will be more lazy backyard breathing fresh air time. It'd be nice to take a long family walk as well. And I imagine little Abe and I will walk our Bozzy around the neighborhood before Daddy comes home. Three quarters through January 2017, it's sure been a busy one but it's also been the happiest January I can remember for a very long time. I'm actually not dreading February this year. I always dread February.


Spending Sat:
Sweatshirt - $10.80
Small toy bag - $2.93
Groceries - $35.69

Average daily spending for 2017: $21.63

Friday, January 20, 2017

Week Three Spending

This month has been busy. Between kindergarten, swimming lessons, gymnastics, work (which is exhausting), cleaning at my mom's, and trying to maintain my home I am tired. Happy, but tired. Ah, that's life. I just about let the past week's spending get away from me. Granted I have not been doing a great a job being frugal but I NEED to at least keep track. Just basic ground rules of budgeting right there.

I just sat down and tallied up the past several day's spending and added it to the rest of the month. I feel like there are two small purchases that I missed but I can't find them. Spending is much higher this month than I'd like it to be but I have stocked up on some household items AND we went out to eat the other night and the total was WAY more then I'd expected. We got fajitas at a local Mexican restaurant and honestly the total should have been around $30 plus tip, so about $36 and it came out to be $48 (with tip). I'm pretty sure my husband's beer made up for all that extra (One very large beer). Geesh!

The food out category jumped from $0 for the first two weeks to $73.76 (from three occasions) in the past week. We also got frozen yogurt yesterday after little Abe did awesome at swimming and I picked up McDonald for he and I this afternoon. That's the only fast food we've had this month. (I'm not a big fast food fan anyhow)

Well that's the latest spending rundown. And now I feel accomplished for having tallied up the spending for this past week despite the totals.

Food Groceries $222.88: an average of $11.14 a day
Food out $73.76: an average of $3.69

Pets $29.15: an average of $1.46 a day
Stuff $10: an average of 50 cents a day
Toiletries $24.93: an average of $1.25 a day
Cleaning and house supplies $65.78: an average of $3.29 a day

Average daily spending for 2017: $21.32

Busy busy bloggers

I'm finding myself laughing at myself this morning. The last post here was a quick check in almost a week ago commenting on how little motivation I had last Saturday. I've not been by blogger much since then because I've been so overwhelmingly busy. Forget motivation, who needs motivation when you can't even keep up with yourself and now I scroll through the reading list on blogger and see that I'm certainly not alone in my having been too busy to post.

It looks like we're all having a VERY busy January. The Hawaii Planner has made a very big, time consuming purchase (congratulations again). I imagine Sluggy running around in circles at full speed with her arms flailing as shes trying to take care of everyone in her family, and taking care of a person who is out of commission is a full time job without needing to still run the household. Anne's been hosting the whole town at her place. Between work and homeschool it sounds like Jennifer doesn't have a moment to breathe. And shoot, SAM is running all over everywhere doing all sorts of everything with her daughter. Should I go on???

I hope blogger isn't displaying a reflection of how this year is going to be. We all need a serious vacation already! I'd ask who is hosting but it seems we're all way too busy for that. Haha! I'd like to encourage everyone (myself included) to carve out some extra relaxing me-time at some point this weekend. We need it!

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Saturday Syndrome

I... need... motivation.

I'm planning on not leaving the house today but I feel like there are one billion things to accomplish here. I better go make a list and a pot of coffee.

Ooh I can write, "post to blog," on my list and check it off first thing.
Ahh then I can write, "make pot of coffee," and check that off.

Most boring blog post ever!

Happy Saturday everyone!!!

Friday, January 13, 2017

Two week spending report

Two weeks in, almost. January has been cold (duh, right), icy, and busy. 

Yesterday little Abe SHOULD have had his first swimming lesson since summer. He and my husband went to the YMCA. Little Abe got all ready, changed, showered, they sat down at the pool and then someone told them that lessons were canceled because school had a snow day. I guess you could call it an ice day. Almost all the snow melted Wednesday and we'd had freezing rain all night. The whole world was covered in a VERY slick blanket of ice and so, No school. We didn't know school was canceled.

I'd bought a small toy for Abe Wednesday if swimming lessons went well Thursday. (My child is very shy with strangers) My husband gave him the toy even though lessons were canceled. Well, that was a waste of $6. Anyway, that's a long story to report $6.

The spending categories I record here are as follows:
  • Groceries 
  • Food out 
  • Pets
  • Stuff 
  • Toiletries
  • Clothing
  • Christmas
  • Gifts
  • Cleaning and house supplies
  • Garden

I think everything I spend money on fits nicely into these ten categories. I assign Christmas and Garden their own categories only because I'm interested in seeing where those two things end up each year. I guess you could call those special interests.  The only things I don't tally here are car expenses, educational expenses, and health expenses. Oh, and of course bills. Everything else I spend money on gets reported here. My husband's spending on himself is not included.

So far this month I've spent in the following five categories:

Food Groceries $164.20: an average of $12.63 a day
Pets $29.15: an average of $2.24 a day
Stuff $10: an average of 77 cents a day
Toiletries $24.93: an average of $1.92 a day
Cleaning and house supplies $44.93: an average of $3.46 a day

Average daily spending for 2017: $21.02

Looking at the short list of categories I'm happiest to report that there's been no spending in the food out category over the last thirteen days. No coffee shop coffee. No pizza (except homemade). No food or snacks out. That's always a fun accomplishment.

The other thing to note is high spending in toiletries and cleaning supplies. I have stocked up on some things this month but the stock up makes me so happy. Being the frugal gal I am there are some things I hate buying not on sale when they run out. Toilet paper (which I have not stocked up on yet) and laundry detergent are two of the biggest annoyances. Whenever I have to purchase either of those things full price because we've run out I get so beyond annoyed. I've gotten a pretty good stock pile of laundry detergent this month at a pretty great price. There won't be any full price last minute detergent buying here anytime soon.

A portion of the toiletries spending this month is face soap for my husband. He uses a certain kind/ brand and I never know when he's out (and don't think to randomly buy soap for him). Basically I almost always end up buying face soap for him full price. We now have four containers of it from a pretty good sale so I think he'll be set for awhile.

All in all, I'm really happy with this month's spending so far. Groceries is a tad bit high but we haven't eaten any food out. So I'm calling that a total win. Pets is right on track. Stocking up on toiletries and cleaning supplies. We've a free bag of dog food from finally hitting the buy 12 get 1 free deal. And there would be spending in the Christmas category but I  purchased $35 worth of stuff on clearance with an $11 store reward making it all free. Great way to start the year!

You know one thing that is kind of strange, despite inflation and adding a person to our family our average daily spending on food groceries has been pretty darn close to an average of $12 a day for over five years. Hmm, I guess I aptly named this blog oh so many years ago. Hehe!

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

I am happy

This year feels weird. It feels hopeful but weird. Maybe it's just the way I'm interpreting the fresh feeling of newness that virtually every January holds. After all we're only eleven days in and I've been focusing not on cleaning my home, nor on losing weight, or any other respectable task but instead I've been focusing on laughter. I imagine that could give this brand new year a feeling of hopefulness. Whatever the case it has one.

My husband and I seem to be on the same page in many areas. There's nothing normal about that. When they say opposites attract they were talking about him and me. There's something really fresh and new and revitalizing about this place of strange unity. I feel like little Abe is at a place, at an age where so many huge new beginnings lie before him. He's getting so smart so fast. He's getting so aware so fast. He's able to do so many things so much more fully. It's mind boggling to witness. I'm in awe of him.

Also, in terms of myself I feel so calm. I think my job was giving me so much anxiety for so long, and my health suffered as a result. Now that I'm feeling content and peaceful in my daily life I can feel my back pain decreasing. I can feel strength finally starting to build up in my back after so long of feeling almost cripple (something I try and not speak of often on the blog). I'm finding more motivation for little things, granted that has a lot to do with back pain decreasing. It seems that progress can now be made in so many areas that have been stagnant for a long time.

And I'm excited. I'm excited to live each day as it comes. I'm excited for every tiny beauty. I'm excited for all things new. I'm excited for the joy that can be had in simplicity. I'm excited just to be. There's a really lovely calm amidst the excitement and I think it's what they call happy. I am happy.


Food groceries $8.11 (Mon & Tues)

Average daily spending for 2017: $20.87

Sunday, January 8, 2017

The hoarder and the aftermath

Two doors down lived a hoarder. In just a few short years he filled the entire house with things, floor to ceiling. He filled the entire garage with things. When the three story home and garage were packed to the brim he began to fill the backyard with things.

The hoarder rode a bicycle around town all day and brought back loads of street corner finds, dumpster finds... I don't think he purchased any of his hoard, or at least not much of it but he spent seemingly his every waking hour on collecting.

Despite how important the things seemed to be his home began to crumble. Weed trees along the edges of the house and garage started to grow into the roof. Portions of the hoard barely contained in the front porch began to push out windows. The hoard had officially taken over. That's when the city stepped in.

The city cleaned up the outside hoard two times, billed him for it, and then I hear they put a warrant out for his arrest for not meeting a court date. He moved out when he got in trouble. We (the nosy neighbors) don't know where he went but I've seen him riding his bike around town with bags full of things dangling from the handle bars. I can only assume he's now collecting at a new residence.

I know his sister took responcibity at one point. I'm not sure if she was trying to get him out of trouble but for several weekends in a row she had a dumpster brought to the house. Men who worked with her husband were hired by her to clean out the kitchen. Several dumpsters later the kitchen was emptied.

I watched as the bank put a foreclosure notice on the front door. Weeks later, now in the frigged cold of winter a group of people are clearing the house out once again. I don't know who they are, if they bought the house at auction, if they were hired by the bank or the city; This time they're getting rid of everything. From morning to night for the past three days they've been filling big black garbage bags with the hoard and throwing them into the backyard. It's been awhile since the backyard pile was in place but the enormous pile of black bags is familiar to us neighbors, even though they've a very different purpose now.

Not once, as far as I know, not once did the hoarder himself get rid of anything. He collected. He stored. He worked feverishly to fill every inch of the home with stuff, with things, to insulate it with collecting. Yet now, tireless hour after tireless hour, through the smell (I've seen many face masks sported over there), and the filth, through the horrible neglect and pointless piles the collection has been removed by so many different people who I can only guess detested the chore.

The whole scene hits me in a strange way since I spent eleven years of my life in a home that collected its own hoard. After the bank foreclosed on that house it was demolished. But I can still remember the stench. So many of my childhood relics were lost to that house. I despised that place. I'm glad it's gone. But watching the scene two doors down I can't help but feel bad for the hoarder. I honestly feel really bad for him but somewhere inside I'm also furious at the disease, I'm furious that so many other's have had to clean up his mess. There's no reason for it. There's NO good reason these people should have to be wasting hours of their lives over there, with those big black bags, and dumpster after dumpster. Something about it infuriates me.

This is where I take the scenes I've watched play out two doors down over the past few years and think about myself. I can't help but wonder if there's anything that I collect, anything that someone else has to clean up after. The first thing that comes to mind is how ridiculously opinionated I am towards my husband's family. It's almost as if I collect opinions that I won't let budge, opinions that do taint me like the hoard pushing out the windows on the front porch at the hoarder house. And I think my husband is the one that has to clean up after my collection. Maybe clean up isn't the right expression but in a way he has to deal with the weight of it. How much time do I waste on things that don't matter, things that just create messes and who ends up dealing with it in the end? Honestly though, that's just the first thing that comes to mind. I hope I'm not collecting things that others will ever have to clean up after.

Sunday spending
Food groceries: $28.48

Saturday, January 7, 2017

First week behind us (Spending update)

This felt like a really expensive week. I had to purchase dog food yesterday BUT it was the 12th bag in the Buy 12 get 1 free cycle so I picked up a second bag for free. Our food groceries spending averaged out to $10.44 a day but I spent an additional $12.88 on cleaning and household supplies (Rite-Aid purchase not tallied here). 

Not included in the average daily spending (because I don't include "education" type spending) are the swimming and gymnastics classes I signed Abe up for at the YMCA. Yikes! Expensive but worth it.

Also, I FINALLY signed up for Rite-Aid's plenti points program and placed two orders online (with free shipping). I spent $44.93 on various toiletries and $32.05 on laundry detergent. I earned two $20 rewards and used one. Thus I'm deducting the $20 from toiletries which now come in at $24.93. Everything purchased from Rite-Aid was on sale so including the $20 in plenti points that I used, my savings rate was around 60% for the two purchases combined. I'm pretty happy with a 60% savings rate.

Food groceries: $73.08
Cleaning and household supplies: $44.93
including: Trash bags
Index cards
LOTS of laundry Detergent
Light bulbs
Toiletries: $24.93
dog food: $29.15
(free bag)

Total for week one of 2017: $172.09

Average daily spending for 2017: $24.58

This was definitely an expensive first week but I did some pretty good stocking up (not on food) and got some pretty great deals.

Friday, January 6, 2017

Noticing Laughter (Goal update)

Laughing more in January has thus far turned out to be a great goal. I'm not sure how much more I've laughed but I'm definitely noticing each time I laugh. Noticing the act seems to be making each occasion more meaningful. I'll be in the middle of cracking up over something hilarious and the thought does go through my mind, "I'm laughing really hard right now. I'm happy." I know that sounds kind of stupid, but I've been saying for years that when I take note of something, the something becomes more meaningful and more impactful. 

If I drive by something truly lovely on the way to work, the lovely thing is more impressionable by far when I devote a few moments to it. When I acknowledge to myself how lovely it is, when I realize that it is making my day more beautiful, when I express (even to myself) the gratitude I feel towards that beautiful moment then the beauty fully impacts me and stays with me for a long time.

I'm noticing the same with laughter. This month since I'm focusing on it each occasion has been more impactful and more uplifting to me. I can sit here, six days into the month and recall laughing hysterically on several occasions. I don't remember the last time I laughed hysterically before this week but that's not to say it's been a really long time I just never took note of it in my mind before. This week I laughed really REALLY hard with a co-worker at something really silly she said. We could hardly stop laughing. I don't remember having so much fun at work. We dragged it out so much that we'll probably both laugh every time we see a paper clip for ages to come. On Monday little Abe and I danced like fools in the kitchen to some crazy indie music. We may as well have been Aborigines with our "special" moves but boy were they funny and did we ever laugh (and exhaust ourselves). Throughout the six or so songs we fell on the floor laughing more than once at our funny moves.   

I have been working at the list I posted earlier of ways to focus on laughter this month:
  1. Read funny stories, funny poems. We've read funny stories each day. I'm really enjoying this part of the goal.
  2. Watch funny movies. We watched "Pets," which I didn't think was super funny but little Abe thought it was hilarious and I found myself laughing at his laughter.
  3. Tickle regularly. I need to add more tickling to the month. My kid LOVES being tickled and it always makes both of us laugh.
  4. Tell jokes. Nope
  5. Discover/ sing silly songs Nope
  6. Document on the blog one moment of laughter each day. I fogot that I was going to do this. I  have written about laughing a few times in the past six days so I think I'm okay with this one.
  7. Remind myself to laugh. When I notice myself laughing in my head I intend to remind myself to laugh out loud  Yes. I've thought something was funny MANY times over the past week and I have told myself to laugh. It's sad, but what can I say I'm a very serious person.
  8. Take photos of laughter. This one is actually very sad. I think my camera might be dead.
  9. Play more often. Hmm, no, we haven't worked on this. I forgot this was on the list too.
  10. Make time to be less serious. Wow, no. Actually, dancing like a crazy person in the kitchen should cover this one.
  11. Read a book(s) about laughter... or just quotes, haha! Yes. This one's pretty easy for me.
I love January's goal. Laughing more, or at least focusing on laughter and noticing each time I do is really fun. I'm absolutely laughing every single day and I can't say if I was or wasn't before. Just the fact that I know I'm laughing every day, that I remember things that made me laugh, and that I know I'm enjoying life makes me feel accomplished.

July 2016

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Why do all the hangers need to match?

This is what results when I end up stocking hangers at work, contemplating why there are so many different options of hangers to purchase, and then feel an overwhelming desire to buy all new hangers for the closets in my home.

Why do all hangers need to match?
Does clothing get offended or feel neglected due to hanger inequality?
Do coats and jackets organize a strike
When closets are stocked with hangers of different color and size? 
Why are there decorative pillows for every season and holiday?
Are sofas across America all sobbing and writhing in pain,
"Give us variety! Give us change!
We need to be trendy! We have statements to make!" 
Why do decorative storage bins even exist?
Yet store shelves are stocked with every size, design, color and pattern there is.
Do items being stowed, stored, and stocked away need validation from fancy containers?
Does stuff begin to feel self conscious when packed away? 
Money. Marketing.
Economic growth.
Fiscal brain washing.
Better. Newer. Trendier please.
Updated. Renovated. Anything to put egos at ease. 
No! The madness must stop.
I can no longer take this.
Get out of my head.
I refuse to buy new hangers.
I'm using old mismatched ones instead.

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Midweek spending rundown

Last few days spending rundown

I spent the $11 store reward on Christmas clearance:
Two bottles of soft soap with snowmen on the bottle
Two rolls of wrapping paper
One bag of bows
Two Christmas crafts for Abe to do next year

The total savings on the above items was $24 and I used the $11 reward making them free.

I also picked up two boxes of cake mix and two containers of frosting on Christmas clearance originally $5.68; I paid $1.64. Normally I don't buy frosting or cake mix but I couldn't pass it up. Little Abe and I will make one set soon-ish to bring to my moms. The cake mix has red and green sprinkles in it so I'll save the second set to make at St. Patrick's day, for St. Patrick's day cupcakes.

I spent $11.12 on groceries yesterday.

My husband spent $7.99 on two turkey breasts today. (He's insane and I can't believe he spent so much money on basically two meals) Normally I don't include my husband's spending in the average daily spend BUT the meat is totally a regular grocery item and our dinner so I can't not include it.

That brings our total spending so far this week/ year to $73.70.

Average daily spending for 2017: $18.42

Tonight I think I'm going to run out and return deposit bottles and pick up eggs and maybe milk. I guess it will depend on how many bottles I can scrounge up.

Monday, January 2, 2017

Snickering at a Duckling

Since I'm hoping to include more laughter than usual in this month's repertoire Little Abe and I checked out some funny children's books from the library. One that was recommended by our favorite librarian* is called "The Pigeon Finds a Hot Dog." It's written by Mo Willems and my son thinks it's hilarious.

The Pigeon as featured in several of Mo Willems' books finds a hot dog and is about to enjoy it when a little duckling comes along and asks what a hot dog tastes like. The Pigeon then faces the struggle of whether or not to give the hot dog to the little duckling who has never tasted one. The pigeon is very loud, expressive and does not want to share. The funniest part though is the really silly voice that I always use for the duckling. When the duckling says it's simple one liners like, "So, it doesn't taste like chicken, then?" little Abe can't help but laugh and laugh and repeat the little bird in the same silly voice.

Upon first read I'm not sure how funny either of us found the book. My son had a big smile on his face throughout but I don't remember if we laughed. We've since read it many times. The characters are growing on us. The silly duckling voice gets more amusing with each read and the Pigeon gets, dare I say more frustrated about the hot dog dilemma each time its revisited. When all is said and done the pigeon splits the hot dog in half and shares with the small duckling and the book ends with the duckling saying, "Hmmm... needs mustard."

Already this month I've learned a few things, I've learned that something that isn't so funny at first can certainly become so with a little bonding and I've learned that stubborn pigeons and tiny ducklings can be hilarious (especially when funny voices are involved).

Spending today:
m&ms and water at work $1.87
Light bulbs $4.28

2017 Average daily spending: $26.48

*Our favorite librarian doesn't know that she's our favorite librarian and just this moment I realized we should make her a card, or little Abe can draw her a picture with a note thanking her for her unique kindness and wonderful helpfulness. 

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Let the spending begin!

Last year got away from me mid year and I mean really got away from me in terms of tracking spending. When my husband and I changed jobs, woah! It turned our world upside down.

A new leaf has been turned over today (metaphorically) and I NEED to get back to good old habits. Today I made a trip to the store and bought food, garbage bags, laundry detergent, and index cards.

Groceries: $38.20
Trash bags: $4.49
Detergent: $3.49
Index cards: 62 cents
Total: $46.80

Today's trip brings this year's average daily spending to $46.80 a day. Haha, that's kind of a funny number to report for the $12 a day blog. The trip today earned an $11 store reward so I'll use that next time I shop.

Well, there it is. Hopefully I'm back on the wagon. (geesh, how many idioms can I fit into one post?)

Starting with bread and laughter

I'm starting off the new year with a book, home baked bread, and blackberry jam. And yes, I am laughing.

A few days ago my husband asked if I'd thought about New Year's Resolutions. It was a funny question because as far as I know he's never made one before. I said of course I have, I'm going to laugh more in January. That in itself was funny because I knew what he was asking; I knew that he was suggesting we go on a "diet" together. He thinks I'm incredibly quirky and my answer caused him to laugh rather hard. After laughing at me he filled me in on what "New Year's Resolutions" was code for in his lexicon.

So it's the first day of a brand new 2017, he's at work. I'm up early. Little Abe is sound asleep in bed and I'm starting the New Year exactly as it should be, with all the little joys I could conjure up: a book in hand from the library that I've been enjoying the past few days, fresh home baked bread that little Abe and I worked most of the day on yesterday (if you can call waiting four hours for the loaves to rise, working on), and homemade black berry jam made from blackberries little Abe and I picked last summer with his Papa at his Great Grandma's blackberry patch. As for the bread, one thing I thought yesterday before the year began to officially draw to a close was that I should have baked more bread in 2016. I quickly remedied that by getting out the loaf pans, loads of flour, the yeast, ect; and baking bread to end the old year right.

Perfection if you ask me, a quiet beginning to a New Year with so many things that fill my heart with joy: books, bread, and berries. Oh yeah, and if you hadn't figured it out already I'm laughing because none of it (beside the book) fit nicely into my husband's New Year's Resolutions. Hey, I'm sticking to mine!