Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Savvy shopper

For the last few months I have been following a blog from a lady who bargain shops with coupons and all that savvy shopper stuff.  For a while I thought, "that's too much work to find all the bargains and coupons and go to all the different stores she was getting her deals from".  Then I saw her annual breakdown of how much she spent vs how much she saved.  This woman on average spent about $100 a month on groceries and household items!  Not just that, but she saved from $100 to $1000 every month!  So that means she got $200-$1000 worth of stuff every month for $100!  So after seeing that I was sold!

I am now following about 3 blogs of people who show you where to get the deals/coupons and whatever else to cut your grocery bill.  In fact, today one of the bloggers went shopping and bought $104 worth of groceries for $7!  I also subscribe to the Pinching Your Pennies newsletter,   and a bunch of couponing sites.  Its not nearly as complicated as I once thought it to be either.  All of these resources just show me where to get the coupons.  They also have shopping lists for several different grocery stores so that you know whats on sale where.  I've already had one fun shopping trip where I bought $70 worth of groceries for $40, but I am determined to do better.  Right now I don't have my printer hooked up to print coupons. Once I get that up and running its going to be money saving madness!  I've also got some fun tips for shopping online too!

So I suppose many of my future posts will be on my savings.  After all, the more I save the more I can buy.  Aaron is starting Capoeira classes this week due to our projected savings, and I'm hoping we can even start saving for an awesome family vacation sometime this year.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Home Life

So we've been living in our new home for about a month now and it feels like home.     We are all unpacked except for our book boxes.  This is due to the fact that we don't have enough housing for our books right now.  We are wanting to build shelves at the end of the hall way for said problem, but we've been spending like drunken sailors for a while and have decided to put ourselves back on a budget.  Our housing accounts still haven't been closed, which means we haven't had to pay our mortgage yet, and we still don't have a set date.  The result?  Free flying cash!  Then we came to our senses and figured it might be a wiser decision to save than spend.

Our lived in kitchen

Our dining room/desk area(picture courtesy of Vaeh)

The living room being lived in

Since we've moved in we've maid a few improvements.  First, we switched the refrigerator door.  It was opening into the laundry room rather than the kitchen.  Then we switched out the light fixtures in the bathroom.  They were those hideous Hollywood type lights, so that was a no brainer.  Then we built our own baby gate for the stairs.  Joseph is a new walker, which translates into him being super clumsy.  Our stairway is at the end of the hallway and I would just hold my breath every time he would walk by.  So we figured since we built our house, a gate would be a piece of cake.  Not so.  We struggled, but it is finally up and functional after some slight alterations from the original plan.  I think it looks nice, but Aaron wants to build another.  I don't blame him, we did have to jimmy rig it to fit.  No painting yet.  I can't seem to decide on colors, or which walls to paint.  It makes such a huge difference, so I don't want to make a bad choice.

The baby gate in all its glory

One quite impulsive and not well thought out choice we made was to get a puppy. Our original plan was to wait until the spring when our gate is up so that house training, and everything else that comes along with a dog, would be easier.  Since KSL is my new favorite place to shop, I of course was looking at puppies.  Aaron expressed his interest in Huskies, so we found some really cute husky muts(they have lab and german shepherd) that were really cute and we caved.  He is super cute and has one blue eye.  He looks like a husky with the floppy ears of a lab.  I hadn't had a dog since I lived in Farmington, and I either forgot or never noticed that puppies are somewhat of a pain.  He hasn't had many accidents in the house and has been surprisingly easy to house train.  The problem is his constant need to chew on everything(including the children), and his tiny bladder that makes him have to pee every two hours(including night time too).  I have to constantly watch him to make sure he isn't peeing somewhere, or chewing the children.  I also have to watch the kids to make sure they aren't torturing the dog.  Breaking him of the biting habit has proven to be difficult.  Last night I was toying with the idea of getting rid of him, but he has also brought something to the table.  Because of the dog, my brother Drew has decided he wants to come around often.  Its been fun to have Drew over, and I'm pretty sure if the dog goes Drew will follow suit.  I'm hanging in there fighting for the idea that when Kenai(our puppy) gets bigger he will be a wonderful, loyal and smart dog.  For those two reasons the puppy has immunity for now.

The little trouble maker the day after we got him

Looking innocent

I suppose this post has exceeded its limit so I will leave it at that.