Every Day

Enjoy Your Holiday Weekend And A Few More Cost Cutters

The first thing I did this morning when I got up was open the blinds and shades on the windows that did not have sun directly on them. I open and shut them as the sun is on them. No lights are on here. I noticed when I did this that our sprinkler system is on this morning. Hubby has it on a timer to come on certain days and we always water the grass in the early morning. You do not want to water in the heat of the day. But I am keeping an eye on it because we might have rain coming. If that happens, I will manually shut it down.

Next I made my coffee in my reusable K cup. We have not had liquid Coffeemate flavored creamer in our coffee in a while. A few weeks ago on a sale I picked up some Amaretto. It just doesn’t taste as good as it used to years ago. But I will not waste it nor will I buy it again. Half and half is so much better.

I ate Steak Umms with a hard boiled egg for brunch. Hubby had a small amount of his steak leftover from last night so he cooked that up for him with his egg. I have bacon and some breakfast sausage thawed but I don’t know yet if my son and West are coming this weekend. If they do I will use it then.

Then it was time for my navy shower. I have been using up an old Johnson’s Baby Shampoo for washing my hair. I got dressed but I no longer use makeup unless we have company or I am going somewhere. It has gotten so expensive and the deal I got quite a while ago for CoverGirl Ageless foundation for $ 3.00 a bottle is almost gone.

Last night before we went to bed we put some Green Gobbler Drain Clog Dissolver down our kitchen and bathroom drains. It sits overnight and then we run a little water down it in the morning. Ever since we have been doing this every other month, we have not had any clogs. It is a lot cheaper than calling Roto Rooter. I am now out so I ordered a gallon at Walmart. They have the cheapest price at $ 18.82+ tax. But this time I ordered their mainline one because it is safe for toilets too and will keep them clog free. I got free shipping and since they have it at my store, they will deliver it later today. I switch from one to the other about once every 6 months.

This morning Hubby made some changes in our bathroom and kitchen sinks. I have been complaining that they seem to have less water pressure coming out. I didn’t know if was the town water system doing it or what. So Hubby took the drain part off of each faucet. Inside of them they have one or two very tiny rubber washers. He removed those. He said he should have done that many years ago. Now all the drains are perfect.

This morning I will be finishing the pantry I didn’t get fully done yesterday. Then I will be working on my photo albums for my sons. I have so many pictures from when they were growing up and I want to divide them up between them. I know that they will most likely scan them into their computers but that is fine.

Then I think Hubby and I will just relax for the rest of the day.

Dinner tonight will be ground bison burgers with tomato and onions.

I hope all of you have a wonderful Memorial Day weekend. Ours will be peaceful.

Every Day

Cutting Costs

In case you haven’t seen it, Aldi’s, Target, and Walmart say they are lowering food prices on certain items because people can no longer afford this inflation, have no savings, and their credit cards are maxed out.

I quickly scanned the Walmart site this morning and did not see much of a change in prices except for junk food which is not nutritious food. The White House asked these grocery stores to do it and they are taking credit for it. Gee another move for votes. Am I surprised? Don’t be fooled people. If this administration gets back in the White House for 2025, things will get worse than you have ever seen before. Our country as we loved it and have known it will be gone. It is almost there now. I hate to get into politics here but people were fooled in the last election and need to wake up to what is going on.

Also it is Walmart who made the statement about people not having any money and their credit cards being maxed out because of inflation. The White House is pointing fingers at these stores saying inflation is all their fault so please lower your prices. What a joke! The inflation is being caused by all the money printing by our government. And then they give it to foreign countries and the illegals. We, the taxpayers, are footing the bill. Ridiculous! I have been voting for almost 59 years and watching government all of this time. They are not there for us but just to enrich themselves. This has been going on since the 1960’s. People are just waking up to this finally.

Don’t be fooled by these grocery stores’ statements that they are doing this for us. They are doing it for themselves. They have lost customers to cheaper stores like Dollar Tree, Dollar General, and grocery outlet stores. They are lowering prices to get their customer base back into their stores.

Now I am not saying that we should not take advantage of these reduced prices. But make sure that they are something you really need and really are the lowest price in your area. Here is a list of the reduced prices for the summer at Aldi’s:

It would be nice if Walmart and Target would put out a list for all of us.

Those of you, who Walmart says have spent their savings and maxed out their credit cards, should be going to food banks until you get back on on your feet. Tough times is what they are there for.

That said here is what I did today to cut costs. First, I froze or used up whatever I could in the produce drawer. I hate wasting food.

Breakfast this morning was hard boiled eggs and the last of the ham. Dinner will be grilled strip steaks, purchased on a loss leader sale of $10.99 a lb. and a tossed salad. For those of you who don’t know, we only eat two meals a day.

Hubby has been faithfully taking care of our gardens. 100% of the flowers planted in the ground are perennials. I love them because they bloom year after year. This is our youngest peony. I just love the color. The only annuals we do every year are in the pots on our patio and the hanging baskets. This peony will be gone in a few days. By then our huge white peonies will bloom. Right now this peony, our two lilac bushes, our lilies of the valley, and our Siberian irises are in full bloom. Hubby had flowers, flowering trees and bushes planted that bloom different seasons of the year.

Hubby had a doctor’s appointment today. We had a postage paid package that needed to be taken to Fed Ex. They have a drop off in Office Max which was on his route home. The traffic was quite heavy on our main road here today with everyone heading to Lake Ontario for the long weekend. So Hubby avoided the main road. With gasoline prices so high, he did not want to waste gas idling in traffic.

While he is out, I straightened up one of our pantries in our kitchen and make sure that the oldest items will get eaten first. First in, first out and that is how we roll.

I am sending out a $5.00 liquor rebate. I also got a $ 18.40 rebate check in the mail today. That will get deposited in savings.

We got our mid April to mid May electric and natural gas bill today. I was very disappointed because it was $ 155.94 for 30 days. Last year’s bill for the same period was only 28 days and totaled $ 129.24. That is a $ 26.70 increase year over year. So I compared both bills which showed this bill was for 2 more days. Also we had an increase on our meter charge of $2.00. There were also rates increases that kicked in and the supply and demand charges were up significantly. Our natural gas therms were down by 1 therm. There is not much that can be done about any of it.

However, I can do whatever I can this month to make sure that my bill is down significantly next month. I did one load of laundry today using 2 tbsp. of liquid laundry detergent in cold water and hung a lot of it to dry. Towels I put in the dryer on medium heat.

Lights are off when it is daylight. We cook either in our countertop oven or grill outside. Laptop is off and unplugged when I am not using it. I do not let water run down the sink. I fill it a bit and then wash my dishes. I have a lot of paper plates that I purchased long before the prices went up. So in this season, I am using them to avoid washing dishes whenever I can.

It is time to relax with a book for the evening.

What have you done to cut costs today?

Every Day

Cutting Costs

Today I cancelled Peacock TV. That will be a $ 5.99 savings every month. I also cancelled Hulu which will save us $ .99 a month We were paying these every month but I found that we weren’t watching them. Hubby was the one watching Peacock for sports but I noticed that he had not watched it in months. We still have Paramount + which we get free with Walmart +. I asked Hubby about cancelling Walmart + but he said we should hang onto it because we really may need deliveries over the winter and he loves Paramount+. I am willing for now but will save up any items that are the least expensive until we have enough to order or pickup. Time will tell how we are using it. After the winter, I may cancel or not. To be honest, we watch more You Tube than anything because it is free and we can learn from it.

On Tuesday I had to go pick up a prescription for Hubby. The cost for that was $ 4.95 for 90 days of pills. He stayed home to deal with the company who checks our A/C every year so that we maintain our warranty. I did not expect a problem since this was new A/C that was installed a year ago. There was no problem and the A/C is quite efficient. Pest control was also coming. I hate bugs especially bees and spiders. They only come every 3 months or if we call them with a problem.

While I was out, I decided to stop at Top’s, Dollar Tree, and Aldi’s just for a few things that we needed. We love one egg roll whenever I make homemade Chinese food. Someone told me that Aldi’s egg rolls are delicious and cheap. I have been paying $ 4.69 for Chung’s(4 in a box) at Top’s. This Chung’s today was free with a coupon that the manufacturer sent me. The other box from Aldi’s cost $ 2.95 for 5 egg rolls. We will see if they taste any good. They are a bit smaller than Chung’s. I think the reason that I had never seen them at Aldi’s before is they are near the pizzas.

The same girl told me that they eat Aldi’s General Tso’s chicken with them. Hubby loves that. So he asked me to pick one up. It cost $ 7.15. The next time he wants it, I will try making it from scratch. The breakfast sausage was only $ 1.99. I needed this for our Sunday breakfasts.

Next I stopped at Dollar Tree. I grabbed 3 of the John Morrell smoked sausage. They were $ 1.25 minus a $ 1.00 mfrs. coupon for each. Final cost was $ .25 each. They can be sliced up just like hot dogs and used in almost any dish.

The last stop was for half and half at Top’s which was $ 5.99. It is $5.64 at Walmart but I decided not to make that extra stop there and because Walmart’s goes bad a lot quicker than the Top’s one. We don’t go through it that quickly. I also got Hubby some Decaf coffee for $ 5.69. Total for all of this shopping was $ 24.52.

Top’s last week gave me a coupon to turn in for 100 free gasoline points this week. So I got those added to my card.

Hubby has one watering can which we keep in the backyard to water flowers. We thought we needed another one out front to water the hanging baskets. But we decided to use 2 – 2 liter empty bottles instead. One bottle of water for each basket is perfect. Use up what we have is our motto.

I take Florastor to help with gut issues. It is very expensive. I take 2 a day and buy the 100 count capsules. So it lasts just 50 days. I googled it this morning and ordered 1 bottle at the best price I could find which was $53.77 at Walmart. It is shipping free. The last time I ordered it was $62.06 so I saved $ 8.29 this time.

As you can see the stitched seam has come out on the top of this drape in the grandchildren’s guest room. I do not have a sewing machine anymore so I will stitch this by hand this afternoon. I have no idea what a seamstress would charge me.

I will be using up all of the rest of these toxic cleaners in my stockpile. Then I will use natural homemade cleaners for pennies on the dollar. I will be glad when they are all gone.

Tonight for dinner we will be having Chef’s salads. Lots of lettuce, tomato, onion, black olives, celery, and turkey with our choice of dressing. I will put a dozen eggs in the instant pot today so we will have a hard boiled eggs on it too. The rest of the eggs will be for breakfasts and snacks the next few days.

We had blight on our pear tree this year. A tree guy told Hubby to spray it with this a solution of vinegar and water after the flowers were gone. Hubby did this on Monday. We will see if the blight comes back next year.

Have you cut any costs so far this week?

Every Day

It Is Time To Take Care Of Your Own Economy

These past 3 and 1/2 years have been hard for everyone. We are no exception. Prices are insane and I don’t see them getting any better anytime soon. I think that this inflation will continue into next year. It will be difficult even for a new President to turn things around. So many things have been regulated which has caused inflation that it will take any new President quite a while to unravel. So many Executive orders which should never have happened.

Let me give you a little history lesson. We went through something similar back in the 1970’s with Jimmy Carter as President. But what turned it around was the Central Banks raised interest rates up to where they needed to be to calm inflation. Then inflation came down. Jimmy Carter was considered the worst President ever until now.

The Central Banks and the administration today are playing games with us. They are telling us inflation is coming down and it is not. They are manipulating it. If you follow the inflation rate that they report every month, you will see that the next month or so they change it. The same thing is happening month after month with the unemployment rate. We are told that everything is just fine when it is not. So many things are being manipulated. They are lying to us.

Another bank is reportedly going bankrupt in the next few months. An executive of that bank was overheard telling his wife that so many people and businesses will lose all their money. Then he laughed and told his wife not to worry that he has a golden parachute. This is what the elites thing of us. They don’t care two cents about any of us. I don’t care whether they are bankers, elite government officials, or large box stores, etc. They don’t care. All they care about is their own profits.

I have always believed in capitalism. It works really well when it is not manipulated. No one wants to live under socialism or communism. Most Americans have seen how that works.

Most Americans like to shop at Amazon and Walmart. I do when they have the lowest price in my area. But they have become too big. We have antitrust laws in this nation but for the past twenty years the government has not gone after them. They just let Walmart build anywhere they wanted and did not file antitrust suits against them. This is part of the problem. They have put a lot of small businesses out of business over the years. They pay their employees less than other grocery stores. That ruins the towns they have come into by hurting the local community.

Unless Walmart has the best price, I will not be buying anything there going forward. Yes, they have expenses for transportation, maintaining their stores, taxes, the products and to pay their employees. I have no problem with those expenses. Most grocery stores make a 1-2% profit. I do not have a problem with them making money. However, Walmart’s prices have skyrocketed over the past few years and when I see them make a gross profit for the year ending 4/30/2024 of 7.6 % year over year, I have to wonder if we are being ripped off. Their prices seem to go up at least once a week. Have other stores increased their prices? Yes but it does not seem as often as Walmart.

So while the elites get richer, we all get poorer!

I have decided to use my money to bolster my small family owned business called Niagara Produce. I will buy their specials on meat, dairy, and produce. That will be the first market I shop at every week or two. I will buy loss leaders at other stores when they have the best prices. But anything that is not at the best price will not be purchased at Walmart.

If you want to see how inflation has affected you look no further than this calculator:

Let me tell you how it has affected us since we retired in 2001. The same money that we had then has lost 77.1% of it’s buying power. Don’t feel sorry for us. I only tell you this to explain one of the reasons that we save every penny we can to keep up with that inflation. Anyone who is planning on retiring soon, remember to take inflation into account. Prices are always going up so we do what we have to stay ahead of inflation.

Remember when you use this calculator that food and gasoline are not included in these inflation numbers. A friend told me that she has tracked food prices since 2021 and they have gone up on average 60%. We all know that gasoline prices have doubled since that year.

So it is time for me to take control of our own economy and do everything that I can to control those dollars from slipping away in my wallet.

I will be looking at every thing that we spend even the little things. It all adds up. I know there are streaming services that we pay for so I will be getting rid of those soon. I haven’t paid for Amazon Prime in years. I just save up my items until I have spent enough to get free shipping. Walmart + may become history. Anytime I have a need to spend money, I will see if I can make a substitution for something I already have. We will ask questions like “Can we fix it ourselves?” or “Can we do without it?” I will let you know when we do things like that.

So stay tuned and see how we do this.

Every Day

It Was A Busy End Of The Week And Weekend

Hubby and I pulled the container of ham out of the freezer to try to use it up over the weekend. On Friday night he made fried ham and eggs for me and ham salad for himself for dinner. I had not had breakfast for dinner in a very long time.

This was the container of ham. We had used it for a couple of meals before I took this picture. The ham was purchased for $.99 a lb. at Aldi’s after Easter. It was already cooked so I just had to remove the ham from the bone. I have one more ham in the freezer that I will use later in the year.

I saved the bone too with a bit of meat on it to make homemade bean soup.

Then I soaked the beans in water overnight on Saturday. On Sunday I drained and rinsed the beans. I put the ham bone and beans in the crockpot along with some spices and water to cover all and cooked it all day. It was not quite done for dinner so I let it cook for another 3 hours.

When the soup was done, I took the rest of the ham off the bone and added it to the soup. I let it cool and then put it in two half gallon mason jars so that I could store it in the fridge.

We have had breakfasts with this ham, grilled ham and cheese sandwiches twice for dinner, and now tonight we will have soup. I think over the next couple of days that we will finish one jar of the soup. The other one I am going to freeze and eat the next time we have rainy days. I will freeze it in reusable individual soup containers that I use to freeze soup.

I can’t buy cold cuts for $.99 a lb. so all of this was a great bargain. I wanted to get some hams around Christmas but I did not have the freezer space. Finally after Easter I did. I also bought two corned beefs around St. Patrick’s Day. I am always happy to find hams and corned beef cheap because they are two of Hubby’s favorite meats. He could eat them for a week for every meal and be very happy.

Meat is so darn expensive these days that I am very happy when I can get it under $2.00 a lb. Hams at Easter and Christmas for $.99 a lb. Butterball turkeys at Thanksgiving for $.99 a lb. or generic for cheaper is the way to reduce your meat bill. You should be able to pick up cheap ground beef, hot dogs, and sausages this week for Memorial Day. I will be making sure that I have enough for the summer. I know I have enough of all except for hot dogs. I will be picking up a 3 lb. bag this week of Sahlen’s hot dogs for $10.99. They are made here in Buffalo and they are delicious.

The only other items I will buy this week are some corn on the cob at $ .39 an ear and some strawberries on BOGO. In another month we should have great local strawberries.

Hubby is at the dentist for his cleaning and check up. When he gets home, I will make some hash browns and fried ham for brunch.

Speaking of the dentist, I am furious with the staff. I had to cancel an appointment for Hubby a bit ago and I mentioned that our Dental Plan was due to be paid today for the next year and that Frank would pay it when he came in today. Then when I had my appointment a week or so ago, I mentioned that again to his receptionist and bookkeeper. Every year the premium goes up so I called the office last week to find out how much it would be. I was told that the dentist is not offering a plan for 2024. I was shocked and asked her why she didn’t mention that fact when I was in for my appointment. She said it was a recent decision. I said how recent and she said two weeks ago. I told her I asked each time and my appointment had been after they made the decision. What was the big secret? Crickets!

My dentist is to expensive that I don’t think I will be going back there. Hubby is there now and we will see how he feels about it. The only thing I ever have done is X-rays and cleanings for my bottom teeth because I have an upper denture.

When I went to have my medical tests done last week, I saw a sign at a local college that they are doing cleanings and X-rays for free. They must have a dental school there. I am going to try to get an appointment for October which is when I have to go again. This would save me $ 305. for the cleaning and about $200. for the X-rays.

Tomorrow or Wednesday I will do a post about how I am sick and tired of making everyone else rich except us. It will be interesting because I am going to make some big changes.

How are you saving on meat?

Every Day

A Little Of This and A Little Of That

I needed very few groceries this week. On my trip to Top’s, I purchased 4 bars of Cabot Cheese on sale for $ 2.50 each. This cheese is our very favorite so I tend to stock up on it when it is cheap. We needed cheese for grilled cheese sandwiches so that was $ 2.79. The bread is for sandwiches and to make French toast for West. It was $ 1.69. The Ken’s Blue cheese dressing was $2.49 using a $ 1.00 off coupon. The last items were 2 SF wafer cookies that Hubby asked for. They were on sale for $3.00 each. So my grocery bill this week totaled $ 22.97. I also got a 100 free gas points with a monopoly ticket. The cashier reminded me that gas points are expiring on Saturday. Since I had $.40 off a gallon, I filled up while I was there. I paid $ 3.30 per gallon after the reduction.

In the mail I received these coupons that I had requested. We love the Chung’s Egg Rolls to accompany our dinner when I make Chinese food. The Smithfield coupons will come in handy for smoked sausage, ham, and hot dogs. I take time once a week to write the manufacturers of products that I use to ask for coupons.

A while ago my son in the Adirondacks told me that the fire department he volunteers at was having a raffle so I purchased a couple of tickets. I totally forgot about it until this morning when he told me I won the Yeti Tundra 35 cooler. I rarely win anything so I am very excited. This will come in handy for picnics, parties, and if the power goes out.

Yesterday, I ran out and did some errands for Hubby. He wanted me to get some geraniums for the back patio. I had sticker shock when I saw what they cost. I needed a flat of 12 and they cost $ 38. for just 4 plants. That was $ 114. for the flat. There was no way I was paying that. So instead I got a flat of fire hot(color) salvia. That cost me $19.99+ tax. What a huge difference. I wonder why the geraniums are so expensive. I know things cost so much more but I deemed this a complete rip off.

I am lazy this morning. But as soon as I have my shower and get dressed for the day, I will be cleaning.

What are you doing this week to save money?

Every Day

What We Did To Cut Costs The Past 10 days

The flowers in the picture are for Mother’s Day from my son who lives in the eastern part of NY. They are just beautiful with so many roses and lilies. Seven lilies had yet to open when they came. Today they are all open. I have been enjoying them while we eat our meals.

I use a car wash that gives a free wash after you collect 5 coupons for other washes. I had 5 so I went up and got the SUV washed. That saved us $12.00 and they also gave me a coupon for the free wash. When I got home I cleaned the inside of the car and vacuumed it out. It is amazing how many stones were on the mats.

While I was out, I went to Fast Cash and redeemed $ 3. 50 worth of bottles.

Hubby never cut my hair because he had an achilles problem and can’t stand for too long. Since my hair was so bad, I found a $ 12.99 coupon for Great Clips and had it cut. The stylist did a great job so I will continue going to her when I need to. I got a $ 2.00 off my next cut coupon.

We got a refund check from the hospital for my last CT scan for almost $29.52. I wasn’t sure why and was about to call them. Then I remembered that they made me pay my co-pay up front. That is unusual because between Medicare and my health plan, you never know what they will pay. So it was a refund of that over payment.

Top’s had NY premium strip steaks on sale again for $10.99 a lb. I picked up 3 more packages of 4 each. We really love these.

This past week, Hubby grilled steaks, and fried haddock. I made chicken fajitas and red beans and rice. We ate all the leftovers the other nights. No take out or restaurant meals for us.

We always have leftover steak from dinner so Hubby sliced it up and cooked it with butter and garlic. He made eggs to go with it for a late breakfast.

The landscapers came a week ago Friday and weeded all of our gardens, put a new garden in by the shed, and mulched all the gardens. Then they transplanted two bushes from the garden that has our spruce trees in it to the new gardens near the shed. The garden with the 3 spruce trees was planted over 14 years ago and they have kind of taken over. So the smaller things needed to be moved. The garden that was done last year needed a couple of more bushes. Hubby knew exactly what he wanted but the landscaper said he would have to have the nursery order them because they don’t carry them. Hubby said no he would order them and plant them. They came last week and he has done that. That saved us quite a bit of money.

We also had two bushes in the garden out front that had gotten big and scraggly over the years. So the landscaper removed them and replaced them with smaller bushes that are similar.

Two loads of laundry were done: one load of clothes which I hung and one load of winter blankets that I washed, dried, and stored for the winter.

Because I am doing so much scratch cooking, I am using my dishwasher more often unless I use paper plates. So it has been run every other day.

Have you done anything to save a bit of money?

I want to wish all of you Mothers on here a wonderful day tomorrow. We will be staying home and Hubby will most likely grill filet mignon and I will put some baking potatoes in the small oven and cook some broccoli. This is my very favorite meal.

Every Day

Cutting Costs By Learning and Then Acting

I think most people can cut costs easily so that you can get rid of that debt that is hanging over your head.

These are some of my favorite books that I have learned from over the years. Most libraries will have some of these. Borrow them and read them cover to cover. But Precious, I don’t have time. If I could read them when I had two active children, worked a full time job for a number of years, did the cooking, cleaning, and laundry, you have time.

I didn’t have the internet back then. Today you have many blogs and you tube channels that you can learn from. Find the ones you like and read them. Do your work around the house while listening to you tube. I do that while doing chores, prepping meals, and when I am walking on the treadmill. Don’t just listen to them and then have the information go in one ear and out the other. Put what you have learned into action! I know people who read and learn and then never take the time to do any of it. Why bother to learn to begin with? That just becomes a waste of your time.

I still prefer to have a book in my hand that I can pick up before bedtime and read a little every night. I have a huge collection of books that I have read over and over again. I am in the process of reading them again now in this bad economy. Then I will be giving them away one by one so that someone else will have that knowledge.

One of the cheapest ways these days to make a meal with meat is to buy hamburger. I have this book:

It was published back in 1983. I used it over and over again when my growing boys were 10 and up. It saved my budget so many times when things were tight. Keep an eye out for it at the library, on the internet, and garage sales. It is invaluable! My son is making the majority of his meals from scratch and posting them on his facebook page. I have gotten some great recipes from him. Now I will return the favor by giving him this book the next time we see each other.

So while you are looking for frugality books, don’t forget to look for those older cookbooks that have cheap recipes in them too. I still use many from WW2 and later. Those recipes are just as delicious as they were back then and will save you money today.

Do you have any frugal books that you could comment on that you use? It could be helpful to a lot of people here.

Every Day

Are You Drowning In Debt?

The economy has been tough these past few years. Do you feel like you are drowning in debt? Maybe you are. The amount of credit card debt in this country is growing rapidly. It reached $1.13 trillion dollars by the end of 2023. The mortgage debt is $12.25 trillion dollars. Home home equity loan debt is $360 billion dollars. Auto loans are $1.61 trillion dollars. Student loan debt I have no idea because the President seems to be forgiving “his select groups of people” who have student loan debt even though the Supreme Court said he couldn’t. Someone has to pay for that and it is the taxpayers who most likely paid their own student loans themselves or for their children. Isn’t buying votes wonderful? Okay, I will get back on track now.

If you have credit card debt, there is only one way to solve that problem and that is to pay if off. You borrowed it, you pay it off. Over my lifetime, I have heard people make so many excuses about why they have credit card debt. They use their cards for what they consider emergencies. It starts with one emergency and then balloons from there into many emergencies. First, the pipes get clogged and they use their credit card to pay the plumber, then the furnace goes and they put that on the credit card, then they have a dental emergency, or an auto repair emergency, etc. After that everything is an emergency, even food. The worst part is when they are paying the minimum payments every month. They get farther and farther behind with the interest payments they are making. Some of those interest rates are in the high 20’s. Yikes! You are making your credit card companies rich and you poor!

What are you going to do if you lose your job? What are you going to do if you have a reduction in income? There is nothing worse than losing your income. One day you are chugging along and then you are out of a job. Have you prepared for that?

The worst excuse I have heard over the years is “I deserve” a vacation or to go out to restaurants to eat quite frequently, or to go to the latest movies, or to buy new furniture or carpeting or the latest decor, etc. No one deserves anything that they can’t pay for. If you are living above your income, just STOP! You are doing so much damage to your future that it just breaks my heart thinking about it.

I have known people who have lost their homes. I have known people who have never owned their homes for many decades because of credit card debt. Every time they run up their credit cards and can’t pay them off, they redo their mortgage taking the equity out of their home or take a 2nd mortgage on their home in the form of a HELOC(Home Equity Loan). That is the dumbest thing you can ever do. Credit card debt is unsecured debt. By using your home to pay it off, you put your home at risk because your home is secured debt. You don’t pay, they will take your home.

So let’s start being responsible for all of that spending that was of your own making. You have sabotaged yourself and your family. You have no one to blame but yourself. I am tired of hearing poor me because I just don’t have the money to buy “fill in the blank”.

The first thing you do is start a real emergency fund so that you have the money when a true emergency comes up. If you have recently depleted your emergency fund, you have to work to replace it. With all the large and small things you can cut, you can do it even if you just build it with $25. a week. Then do not touch it unless it is a life or death emergency.

Start putting more than the minimum payment on your credit card bills. How do I do that Precious when there is no extra money? You cut all costs that are not a necessity. Next you look at the frivolous spending you do on a daily basis.

You don’t need to buy a cup of coffee out; make it at home and take it with you. You can cook ALL of your meals from scratch so much cheaper than paying for restaurant meals or takeout. You can catch the new movie a few months later on a free or cheap streaming channel for pennies on the dollars you would have paid for tickets and the expensive concession items. There are so many things that are free that you can do for entertainment. Just check your local area. Take up a free hobby like learning how to save money by watching you tube or taking a book out of the library to read.

If you are an impulse purchaser, do grocery or department store pickups. That way you aren’t just browsing in the store seeing all the goodies that you can put in your cart. If you buy on Amazon or Walmart online, put your necessary item in your cart but don’t check out for a few days. If you still deem it necessary in 3-5 days, then purchase it. I do this all the time. 90% of my items aren’t really necessities so I remove them from my cart. If it is a want and you can afford it then get what you want.

This is totally not targeted at any one person. Many people are very responsible with their money. If this post makes you mad, then you probably needed the advice. I will be trying to help anyone who needs to hear this in future posts.


Every Day

Why I Don’t Take Hubby Shopping

Our pharmacy closed this weekend. I found a new one 2 blocks from the one we went to. I visited last week and looked around the store and talked to the pharmacy personnel. I have 4 requirements when choosing a pharmacy. It has to be close to where I do other errands, it has to be very clean, it has to be one that it is in our drug plan, and the pharmacist and other people that work there have to be friendly, accurate, and efficient. I was satisfied that the new one most likely would meet our requirements. I came home and told Hubby about it. He was happy to switch there. So we switched to the pharmacy and gave that pharmacy to all of our doctors to send future prescriptions to. Then Hubby ordered two prescriptions. We were amazed that just three hours after we ordered them, they were ready.

I decided that I would pick them up the next day before I did my weekly shopping at Top’s. Hubby insisted on going because he wanted to make sure that he knew right where this pharmacy was. I told him no problem but that we needed to shop at Top’s afterward. He said okay which surprised me because he hates grocery shopping.

First we went to the pharmacy. I was anxious to see how many pills they gave Hubby for each script. We have never had a pharmacy that filled them correctly the first time. We get 90 days of pills with our plan. It would be so aggravating when I would go to pick up scripts and they would be filled with 30 because they paid no attention. Then I would have to wait while they redid them. This pharmacy did them correctly to my amazement.

Then we went to Top’s to get some loss leaders. I had a list and I even ate breakfast before we went so that I would stick to my list. However, it didn’t take long for Hubby to start picking up things and putting them in the cart. The first few were on sale which was no problem. That is the way I shop and then I shop my shelves to make meals. So we are almost always eating food that was on sale. However he decided he wanted cold cuts. I said okay and took him over to the deli and showed him what was on sale. He didn’t want the sale cold cuts. He wanted the Charlie The Butcher roast beef which the girl told me was $ 18.00 a lb. I told him but before I could say I will get some he got mad and went out to the car to saying he couldn’t get what he wanted. I continued shopping and got him a half a lb. of the roast beef. Then I picked the rest of my items on my list and checked out.

I explained to him that I have no problem getting the things he likes. But I will give him the ad every week so that he can pick out the sale items. I explained that almost everything that he would want would go on sale over a 12 week period. I would buy him enough to last 12 weeks. I told him otherwise I would need a raise in my grocery budget. He said that is fine and any time I need a raise I can just take more cash from the bank. I told him I have been doing just fine this year. So when the ad comes in the mail this week for next week, I will give it to him to look at. Then he can tell me if there are any loss leaders he wants and I will add them to my list. He is happy with this arrangement.

The first 4 items that Hubby picked up were 2 boxes of Cheez-It’s that were on sale for $3.00 a box and 2 bags of croutons that were on sale for $2.00 each. We already have 8 bags of them but they are the Caesar ones he always asks for and I guess he is tired of them. Next I got the 1/2 lb. of roast beef he wanted and noticed when I looked at my receipt and this picture that the roast beef was on sale. It was on sale for $ 14.99 a lb. which I still think it outrageous. So it cost $ 7.94 for .53 lbs. It was not advertised in my flyer and the girl told me it was not on sale.

Then I purchased what was on my list which was 2 sirloin steaks on sale B1G1F and cost $ 11.98 for both minus a $2.00 off $10.00 meat purchase Monopoly coupon so it cost me $ 9.98 for the two steaks. I got a bag of frozen tortellini which was on sale for $ 3.34. I make soup and some pasta dishes with this.

We were out of tomatoes on the vine and I want to make BLT’s this week so I purchased these on sale at $ 1.88 a lb. for $ 3.46. The last item was an 8oz. chunk of cheddar cheese on sale for $ 1.99. We eat cheese as a snack sometimes.

So my total for all ended up being $ 36.71.

Did you get any grocery bargains this week?