It has been almost a month since Dear Hubby and I returned from our two week vacation. We stayed at our usual beach front resort in warmer climes and I feel emotionally rejuvenated and ready to make 2018 our most frugal, CALM year yet!
As part of my mounting frugality I have begun a "Money Stash" book.
In this book I track my "change stash", ie all quarters and dimes that I have saved. If I have either $1 in quarters or $1 in dimes I drop them into a large jar and log them in my book, calculating the running total each time. If I cannot make $1 in quarters or in dimes I put the coins in a cash box until I have enough to transfer to my jar. Any other coinage is dropped into Dear Hubby's 5 gallon coin jar. Our change is taken to the credit union, counted, and deposited frequently because it doesn't take many coins to weigh a whole lot!
I am also trying to stash "paper cash" for Dear Hubby's impending retirement. With the state of employment in the U.S., I fear he could be forced into retirement before his intended date and we are NOWHERE near ready! So, any cash I have left in my purse at the end of the month, dollar bills I receive as the result of a store transaction, and any "found money" (such as the $20 bill I found in the street while on vacation!) is placed in an envelope and logged into my book. When the envelope stash hits a point where I am uncomfortable with it hanging around the house, it is immediately (and I mean IMMEDIATELY) transferred to a bank account. I struggled too hard to have the fruits of my labor stolen in a home invasion! An MP3 player and about $10 in change for tolls was recently stolen from Dear Hubby's car...in our driveway! I fear our once peaceful and safe neighborhood is headed downhill.
I have also continued the purge of our home. After almost 29 years we have WAY too much "stuff" in here to live a calm, comfortable life. Certain things have "gotta go"! So I have been listing items on eBay to see if I can recoup at least a portion of the money we spent on the item. Money from any eBay sales is directly deposited into a Paypal account and logged in my book. Anything not sold after a few listings is immediately donated. For some reason sales have been down, but at least I can get a tax credit and someone else can benefit!
I am also trying to watch videos and do searches through MyPoints or Swagbucks. When I have enough points I redeem them for gift cards that I can use for practical living expenditures and gifts.
For years now I have made purchases through MyPoints to help build my point tally. Over the years I have experienced many occasions when MyPoints failed to issue earned points. In order to keep a tighter reign on this issue I have begun a small notebook where I list the name of the company and the date I made the purchase through MyPoints. It really is keeping my points going where they belong! I can question missing points and provide proof much more quickly and will not lose out due to waiting too long to submit the query. I have also begun purchasing through Ebates when the store is not MyPoints eligible or when I will get more "bang for my buck"with Ebates cash! I track these purchases, too, though I have yet to experience a loss of credit through Ebates.
In addition to our finances, I am trying REALLY hard to address the stress in my life. Stress is hard on any body, but especially on a body already compromised by various medical conditions. I have begun to faithfully use my essential oil diffuser and my salt lamp. When I began delving into oils, I set up a storage system to house these precious liquids. However, accessing them is far from convenient and sometimes I was just too tired or just too sore to make the effort. Bad me!!!
So, I pulled out a few of my favorite oils and placed them on a small table right next to my diffuser. However, the oil could do major damage to the surface!
Five minutes in front of my sewing machine and I had a cute little mat to hold a few bottles.
I truthfully haven't accomplished much in the way of sewing since we got back, but I feel like I have established a solid foundation to move forward with a frugal, creative, healthier new year.
What are your plans?