17 March 2009

Buying More. Spending Less.

I canceled the "No Buy Month" for March, even though it was a resounding success in February. I wasted less than $11 on discretionary spending, changed the way I shop for groceries, and found free ways to enjoy the city. I can't complain about February, but going for March would be too much. I totally believe I can go forward with my techniques for cost effective living without saying "no" to everything.
 
 
 
One thing I learned about me: I love eating in restaurants. Back in January I would have told you I felt no way in particular about it, that a good meal is a good meal. But I miss restaurants. I miss everything from waiting to be seated, to water refills and bread, to being rushed out the door. We used to eat out whenever we wanted. If we wanted burgers, we went to Red Robin. If we wanted wings, we went to PT's. If we wanted cheese on cheese, we went to Maggianos. It seemed sporadic at the time, but I bet my checkbook tells a different story. I didn't buy shoes, clothes, coffee, or sweets in February. And at the end of the month, all I wanted was a nice dinner. I didn't get it. I'm saving it for a special occasion. But I do have a brunch date planned.
 
 
 
The best thing I learned: how to save the most on groceries. My new thrill comes from checking the bottom of my grocery store receipt to see how much I saved. I honestly get a kick out if it and gush about it for at least an hour. I saved $48 (37%) off our last bill. We planned meals based on what was on sale - even though that meant going to the grocery store in a Saturday, when certain deals were active. I clipped coupons ahead of time and I discovered P&G's e-coupons. If you go to that website, you can add coupons right to your grocery store club card. I tested it. It works. Even the woman who checked me out said "wow" as my discounts were applied. She also (seriously) asked me if I were having a boy, but we won't hold that against her.
 
 
 
I've also managed to have some adventures and take some pictures. I'll post those soon. Right after I frame my grocery store receipt.