Top 10 Thrifty Wins: October

We stepped up our game after a spendy September. I’m really proud of what we accomplished this month and I feel like we got our gazelle intensity back.

Some of these wins were big, and others seemed so tiny they might not really seem like wins. I think it’s important for me to recognize them all because even the little things can add up. It’s also about making a lifestyle change and shifting the mindset to buying with a purpose instead of being frivolous with our resources.

These are our wins (big and small) for this month:

1. Shopped around for car insurance. We started looking at car insurance quotes last month. This month, we found one that will save us at least $100/month! It really wasn’t as time-consuming as I thought it would be, and now our rate is crazy better.

2. Decluttering. I made two trips to Nice as New with clothes and items I no longer use. I usually make around $10 per load, but at least it’s something. There’s more to come this month, and I’m going to try using Decluttr for old CDs, DVDs and books. It feels good to get rid of the stuff I no longer use and to let someone else enjoy it.

3. Attended MoneyU. My work sponsored an evening financial wellness program with topics such as how to budget, which types of insurance to carry, retirement planning, investing and others. A free dinner was provided, so Rick and I made a date night out of it. We felt inspired to continue our journey to financial freedom, and we learned a few things that will help us out.

4. Gave plasma more often. I stepped up my plasma game and earned $210 by donating this month. That was almost enough to cover our grocery bill!

IMG_20180905_090202846_HDR5. Spent less than $300 on groceries.
Speaking of groceries…Meatless Mondays have really helped to keep our grocery bill low this month. Meal planning, shopping at Aldi, and using what we already had on hand first helped, too. The bill’s been creeping up lately, but this month we kept it under $300.

6. Extra paycheck for Rick.
Rick gets paid biweekly on Wednesdays, and the timing worked out so that he earned an extra paycheck this month. Cha-ching!

7. Stayed within budget. In most areas. We had car maintenance work that ended up costing a little more than we budgeted for, and our internet provider decided to raise the rate. So we tried to make up for this in other areas of our budget. We came out ahead in groceries, clothing, household items, gifts and eating out/entertainment.

IMG_20181019_1824373158. Leftovers from a conference. Rick’s work put on a 3-day conference and we reaped the benefits from its leftovers. Not only did this conference feed Rick for three days, but he also brought home about 6 lbs of sausage and a HUGE wedge of cheese. (A good time to start keto?) We also received a nice coffee and chocolate gift basket.

9. $100 gas gift card from Rick’s job. I forgot why Rick got this gift card. It might have had something to do with his hard work at the conference, too?

10. Extra large student loan payment. Due to Rick’s extra paycheck this month as well as getting creative to keep other areas of our budget low, we were able to put an extra $1500 toward our monthly loan payment. We’ve paid off about $40,000 since April, and $80,000 overall. Man, that feels good to write.

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