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This is Why! part 6

Previous entries can be found HERE . Thus far we’ve talked about how I use leftovers to help stock my pantry, how I shop to fill my...

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Living With A Reduced Budget: January 2016

January was our first full month of living with our new reduced budget (due to a huge increase in our health insurance premiums) and I thought you might like to read some of the things we did.

We …

Stayed out of the stores as much as possible

Stayed home as much as possible

Lived almost exclusively from our pantry … let’s hear it for a well-stocked pantry!!!!

Utilized the library

Took advantage of free kindle books

Used gift cards we received for Christmas combined with coupons and sales to get the most from them and give us a little something ‘extra’ (blow money) for the month.

Utilized coupons and sales for the groceries we did buy

Took ‘Christmas gift money’ we were given and purchased meats for our pantry

Earned gift cards/rebates/money through Swagbucks, Bing , and by doing Pinecone surveys.  This gave us a little more ‘discretionary’ money

Tracked where our money went … this has been a real eye opener and has shown us some areas we can work to reduce.

Stuck to our budget … this was the one single thing that made the most difference.  We spent our income on paper before we even got it and then followed it very carefully.

It is my hope that by sharing how we're coping with a reduced budget that it might help others who might be going through the same thing.

patsi
She looketh well to the ways of her household … Proverbs 31:27

Disclaimer:  Some of the links in this post are affiliate links.  This means that if you click on the link and place an order, etc I earn a small fee at no increased cost to you.  Thank you for your support through these means.

The Vicky Challenge #3 ... 2016 - Ways I Earn and Save Money From Home!

(Our forsythia bushes are blooming!)

I decided to move the Vicky Challenge from our Pantry Challenge posts each week and give it its own post.  It has taken on a life of its own and was making the Pantry Challenge posts too long.  I am loving this challenge, it is keeping me motivated to look for ways to save and stretch our finances and in my opinion, that is a win, win situation!

Vicky Challenge #1 and #2 can be found Here and Here.

Here’s what I did last week …

Saved $65.26 on the groceries we purchased by shopping sales.

Made homemade wood floor cleaner for my wet jet mop:  saved $6.15

Saved $32.07 by home canning carrots and whole mushrooms (not together) instead of  purchasing them at the store.

Baked 2 loaves of banana nut bread:  Saved $5.18

Used our wood stove 5 days to heat the house and saved $13 per day on our power bill. (According to the research I did the average cost of heating a home the size of ours is approximately $400/month using electricity.  I divided this amount by 30 (for the days in a month) and came up with $13.33 per day so I will count $13/day savings when we use wood heat.) Saved $65

Ordered two used books from Amazon.  Savings $9.26  (Cost out of pocket was nothing as I used an Amazon gift card I earned from Swagbucks to pay for them.)

I canceled a monthly membership fee for an online food related site.  I loved it, but we’re looking for ways to reduce our monthly outflow and this is one.  Monthly membership  fee $8.33 x 12 = $99.96 savings.

We made a cheesecake this week and saved $26 by doing it ourselves.

The USDA’s ‘moderate’ Food Budget for a family the size of ours is $589.70.  In January we spent $ 196.50, that’s a savings of $393.20.  

Downloaded the following free kindle books from Amazon:  Saved $30.94
The Tender Years by Jeanette Oke 

I gave myself a free lesson/class on crocheting edgings on handkerchiefs by referring to this post.  Savings to me: $35 (This is the rate for a crocheting class at fabric/craft stores in our area.) 

I earned another $1.25 through Ibotta from the groceries we purchased this week.

I got paid for doing two Pinecone survey’s this week: $6

Total earned/saved this week in The Vicky Challenge … $775.27.

Thus far this year my Vicky Challenge savings/earnings have been $771.07, add this week’s amount to that and I've earned/saved $1546.34 in January.  I'm really enjoying seeing how much I save/earn from home.

How have you earned or saved money this week?  I would love to hear what you’re doing.

patsi
She looketh well to the ways of her household … Proverbs 31:27

You can also follow A Working Pantry on Pinterest and on Facebook!

Disclaimer:  Some of the links in this post are affiliate links.  This means that if you click on the link and place an order, etc I earn a small fee at no increased cost to you.  Thank you for your support through these means.



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