february recap

Two months down! I am officially 1/6 of the way through this Spending Freeze. For some reason putting it in a fraction makes it seem like I’ve gone further and am closer to the end. I’ll take whatever helps me power through.

My only unauthorized spending for the month was the $3.82 I spent on my niece’s gigantic cookie, making the year’s “Broke the Freeze” total — that’s how it’s labeled in my budget software (yeah, I have budget tools now, like a grown-up) — $6.00. I feel really good about that.

I managed to buy groceries at the beginning of the month, for the whole month! No really, that’s a big deal for me. Have I told you grocery shopping stresses me out? So much planning, thought, price-checking. For a while I’d been debating driving to the Kingsport’s (next city over’s) Target – since they actually sells groceries – to see if my employee discount would help overall. It was a good experiment, but not something I’ll do monthly because… my overall grocery expenses for February were a little over $1 less than January. (Dolla dolla bill y’all.) And I spent that driving there. Lesson learned.

However, I will say one thing for monthly grocery shopping — it feels great once it’s over. If you’re like me and hate walking around the grocery store (It’s cold, ok? I hate being cold.), once a month shopping is awesome. As much as I dreaded it, when I realized the second week in February that I didn’t have to spend part of my Saturday at the store… aaahhhhmazing. I’m looking into couponing a little — but as someone who cashiers, couponers are really, really annoying. No offense, folks, I’m sure you’re all lovely and charming to your cashiers, but most couponers lack your exceptional manners. I totally get that those other coupon loving people came to me JUST because they had this awesome coupon to get diapers/formula/soap/detergent/razors for super cheap, but maybe could you teach them to NOT yell at me when the computer doesn’t accept one or two of the fifty coupons?

Back to topic: I did not spend less on groceries, but I will stick to monthly shopping. Another goal for Feb. was to cut my gas spending, but thanks to work that did NOT happen. However, I did manage to claim all those miles so I’ll be/have been reimbursed!

For the 28 days of February, I managed to save a total of….  $345!

To be honest, I am amazed at that. I can rationalize how it’s because February is a short month but I still had the same monthly income… but I don’t care. I’m really proud of that number.

Speaking of being proud, for the sake of honestly, you should know that I log into my bank account/check my fancy budget software these days just to see how much I have in savings. Even though I know. And then I calculate how much I could put into savings at the end of the month if I don’t spend any more money. It’s so weird. I’m pretty desperate for a new pair of black dress flats for work, but when I start to browse, I remember how much I could put into savings if I don’t buy them. (Who am I?!)

March goals:

  • find two ways to make a little extra money
  • celebrate the boyfriend’s birthday cheaply
  • resist getting a haircut because I won’t need one yet – it’s a WANT, even if the $8 Jenny Lea Academy cut I got last month was pretty terrible and I fixed my bangs myself when I got home…

Thanks for the encouragement, friends! You have no idea how much it helps. :)

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