New and Exciting!

We're trying some new things around here....and so far, it's been really exciting! And really good!

First of all, we are now full-fledged members of the Dave Ramsey phenomenon. We didn't actually "attend" Financial Peace University, but we listened to the CD version and I read one of his books. At first, my husband thought Dave Ramsey was some kind of cult leader and if you "followed" him, you immediately had to put your house on the market and start eating roots and berries. :) No, we'll be keeping our house and we're still eating fillet (when it's on sale for $2.98 per lb at WinCo, like it was last week. FYI!). What we have done is make a budget for the first time in our married life and actually track our spending. Novel idea, right? We have always had one credit card for personal use and one for business and paid them off every month and lived within our means. So, what's the big deal? Well, the big deal is, we didn't really have any idea where our money was going. Seriously, I go to Target and get what we "need" and I grocery shop at WinCo, occasionally use coupons and usually buy generic, but I had absolutely no idea how much I spent at either of those places from one month to the next! Well, I do now!

And this leads me to the next new thing! Coupon-ing! I have been following a couple blogs for a few months now and they are pros when it comes to saving money. So, I pretty much just do what they do! :) Some girlfriends and I went to a class hosted by one of them recently and I purchased a coupon binder which has quickly become my favorite thing ever!
I buy 2 copies of the LA Times every Sunday just for the coupons! My dear husband (who is graciously humoring me) goes out early in the morning on Sunday to buy my papers before they sell out. Just a heads up if you're local, they sell out very quickly.....you can't wait until after church! A couple of weeks ago when he went to get them at our local Fastrip he was still a little sceptical about my fear that they would run out. Well, he comes home and hands me the papers and says, "Maybe you're right. When I walked in, there was this gang banger, tattooed face and all, holding an LA Times. He looks right at me and says, 'I gotta get here early on Sundays to get mine! The LA Times is my B%*&!!'"

Ummm, anywho....

So, I have a set amount each week that I can spend on groceries/household items. (Btw, I inflicted all of this on myself! My husband could not care any less how much I spend on anything, let alone groceries. I am the nerd in this relationship!) My goal is to see how far under that I can come each week (again...nerd!). I forgot to take pictures of my purchases this week (aaaand....nerd!), but my goal is to start having a weekly post about deals I've found and how much under-budget I came in!

I'll tell you that my weekly budget is $100 and includes all food and household items. This is waaay more that what the "pros" budget (usually $45-50/week), but I wanted to be reasonable in the beginning. Plus, I knew that if I started out low and then went over, I'd be really discouraged. This way, I've been able to see just how much I can save and so it's really encouraging!

This week, I took the $35 for the coupon class & my binder out of my grocery budget and then $30 for the girls' registration for gymnastics because I really stocked up last week and I knew we didn't need much in the way of groceries anyway. However, with the remaining $35 I was able to buy quite a bit: 8 boxes of cereal, 16 rolls of paper towels, 12 rolls of TP, 2 jars of peanut butter, 2 bags of chex mix, 3 lbs. of chicken, 2 pckgs. of bacon, a 3 lb. box of corn dogs (hey! they were cheap! don't judge!), 24 pk of Squirt, 2 bags of romaine, 2 boxes of brownie mix, 36 pk of choc chip cookies, a loaf of bread, 2 lbs of carrots, 2 lbs of bananas, and 3 cans of spaghetti sauce. Granted, this does not look like the healthiest of groceries, but it was mostly just for the purposes of "stocking up" because they were good deals! WinCo had a great ad out this week with some amazing prices!
Also, I got the restaurant.com certificates I mentioned in the last post and 165 pictures printed and shipped to my door for $4.99!
I can't wait to get my coupons tomorrow! And Jake can't wait to see his friend at Fastrip! ;)
I'll be back next week, hopefully with pictures!

I can see all of you sitting on the edge of your seats!

Actually, I promise I'll try to post something interesting between now and then! ;)


~ Kati :) said...

Now I know why we get along so well...we're like the same person!! isn't Dave grand?? of course, my free-spirit other half has told me a number of times in the last year, "yeah, well, screw Dave Ramsey!!"...I can get a little anal. and I'm jealous of your grocery bill, I'm still at about $100 a week plus $30-40 at Target. maybe we eat too much...?? :)

April said...

My hubby and I joined Dave too several months ago and it is so helpful! We had never been on a budget while single or married and had no idea where our money was going. Imagine my surprise and disgust when I actually figured out how much we are wasting every single month on stuff! It helps so much to do the monthly budget and track our spending. Now I just need to figure out the whole coupon thing. It seems so complicated.

Sunny said...

OK, can you just tell me EVERYTHING you do and I'll just copy you? Maybe with my savings I can give you a salary for your work. ;) I've heard about Dave for a long time now and have read a few of his books but just haven't taken the real plunge! We have always been on a budget but lately we've been spending more than we should and not strapping down and getting serious about saving. You got A LOT of stuff with that $35!

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