Monday, January 30, 2012

January 2012 financial re-cap............

I decided to sit down on Monday afternoon to go over how we did financial wise during the month of January.

First my pots;  I have $200 in my birthday pot.  It would have been $220, but I took $20 out last week to buy 6 cards and 6 stamps for Britain.  5 of those cards are for birthday's in February, and I need three of those stamps to mail the cards.

In the "Other" box I have $350, but $300 of that is ear marked to put in the envelope for a wedding we are attending at the end of February.  The Christmas box is looking healthy as well with $140 in there.  Just checked my loonie ($1) and twoonie ($2) box and I have $57 in there.  Hoping to have $200 in there by the end of April, using that money for the garden.

Both dh and I have been putting any silver coins into my sealed pot, but it's a bit of a double edged sword situation.  As we trying not to spend any money, I never have any change.  I know I put over $1 worth of silver in there today though, so that's good.

Grocery Shopping: I went slightly over budget this week and spent $79.67 and used $18.49 in coupons.  So my monthly total came in at $293.73 which was under my $300 budget and used a total of $75.37 in coupons.  I also managed to increase my Shopper's Drug Mart points total by 39,740, which is worth $60 in free product on a regular day.

This week I stocked up on deodorant for dh,  more shampoo for me and new toothbrushes for us for the end of February.  Due to me going shopping on Monday morning, I discovered that most things were out of stock, so I had to adjust my grocery list accordingly.

I am hoping to have enough swagbucks to cash in again by January 31st, so that will be $25 worth of Amazon e-cards this month.  Not sure if I can keep this up though when the weather gets better.

We have started a glass jar with a label on it saying "WINE FUND."   Dh likes to make wine and it is a lot cheaper than buying it from the LCBO.  It costs around $120 to make around 30 bottles of wine at the store.  I told dh I would contribute $20 a week, as long as he contributed $10 a week from his "allowance."  So far there is $60 in the jar, so in a couple of weeks there should be enough in there to start a batch.    I think I will encourage dh to keep putting $10 a week in there to start a batch after that.

I put an extra $10 a week on our mortgage payment, and am toying with the idea of adding an extra $10 to that.  Every little bit helps to my mind.  It's been a quiet month for renovation expenses and I think this month we only spent around $250 at the hardware store. 

Money was put into the savings account each week, not a lot but better than nothing.  I earned some money this month, which helped out a lot as I had a big credit card bill (all paid off).

So my standard goals for February are to continue adding money to all my pots.  There are four Fridays in the month of February, so I will set my grocery shopping budget to $300, or $75 a week.  Try and keep my spending down and only eat out once during the month.

I will be posting the rest of my goals along with my Challenge goals tomorrow.

14 comments:

North of Wiarton & South of the Checkerboard said...

Fantastic Budgeting Gill. Yes, I too am of the opinion every little bit helps.

Colleen said...

Thank you for sharing your finances. I'm always looking for ways to cut down or cut out things every month. We are retired and live on a definite fixed income. I have a notebook that I list every month all the "usual" expenses (electric, mortgage, insurance, TV, etc.) and then I put away as much as I can and leave the rest in the checkbook for groceries, gas, misc. expenses, etc. If it's not in the checkbook then it doesn't get spent.

Northern Living Allowance said...

Fantastic! What great accomplishments for January! :)

saving for travel said...

Thanks for the update which I read with interest.

I know EXACTLY what you mean about the sealed pots! LOL!

Looking forward to seeing how the grocery budget proceeds.

Sft x

Cash Only Living said...

Wow! Great job! I particularly like the idea of your Christmas fund with so much money in it already and a fund just for wine--what a good idea!!

Star said...

Very interesting to follow your financial notes. I have only one policy 'do I really need it?', if so buy it, if not don't. I agree that January is a very good month to be thrifty.

laura @ nomorespending said...

I love that you have a WINE FUND ! :)

I need to feed my sealed pot a lot more in February, like you not spending means no change in my purse.

Susan said...

HI Gill, I went back over my grocery budget for January and came in under budget by $16.00. This month I hope to do even better. The change goes into my sealed pot. It always helps to make it fun and share with others.
Great work girl....keep at it. Susan

Evelyn said...

Great job Gill!

Jane said...

I like the idea of a wine fund:) Though we have cut way back on our wine tippling (well I have) since Christmas. Mostly...

Lena said...

Great job this month! Don't you love how it's still another month until Christmas, and you already have some money saved for it?

~Carla~ said...

You did wonderfully, you're such a fabulous shopper & find such awesome deals!! :) Great job with all the saving!! Excited to see what your goals are for February!

Clippy Mat said...

Gill: My dilemma is that I rarely find a coupon for an item that I would regularly buy. Most of the coupons are for food or household items which I wouldn't buy in the first place. Where am I going wrong?
I hardly ever shop at S.D.M. either but I suppose I should follow your example and buy things there when they are on sale and then use the points to buy again? Right?
I love your tips.
:-)

Debby said...

What a great month you have had!!! I'm with you in that saving during the winter seems to come a little easier but come spring I have a hard time staying on track, so much to do in the garden and yard. What a cute idea for the wine, maybe I can talk hubby into making his own beer!! Ha fat chance!