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Home > Getting Ready for a New No (Unplanned-) Spending Challenge

Getting Ready for a New No (Unplanned-) Spending Challenge

August 11th, 2006 at 03:34 pm

I just got online and made sure that all my bills are set up to be automatically paid when due for the next month, and I set up automatic transfers from savings to ensure that the money is in the checking account when it needs to be.

I'm on my way out of the house and I will stop and buy a $50 gift card for the local convenience store which usually has the cheapest gas and is on my way to work, and a $125 gift card for the grocery store, and then when I get home tonight, I'm taking my ATM card out of my wallet.

So I'll be able to get gas and groceries with the cards--and I have enough cash in my wallet to pay my $4 library fine (oops!!) and dine out one night at Musikfest--and that's it for the month.

Staying within those limits really will be a challenge.

Money is really tight right now--haven't had a paycheck since May 20, don't get another until Sept 20 (41 more days--almost 6 weeks!), so I really had to struggle over a couple of expenditures when I was setting up the automatic billpay. I decided to cancel Netflix just before my next billing cycle on the 20th; I'll start it up again around Thanksgiving. I should be too busy this fall semester to watch many movies anyway! I *was* going to cancel the newspaper, too--but I decided to keep it for a few reasons. In particular, there's a big decision coming down locally this fall about whether or not my town is getting a casino; that news will only be in the local paper and not in my beloved online NYTimes, and not all of the relevant stuff (notices about community groups, etc) even gets into the online edition of the local paper. Plus after an event like yesterday's thwarted terrorist attack, I do get more news hungry. Thirdly, I'm on a special plan where I get the paper for half price; if I stop it now, there's no guarantee that I'll be eligible for the special rate again. I figure I'm just going to have to use at least $21 worth of coupons in the next 13 weeks so that the subscription will pay for itself!

3 Responses to “Getting Ready for a New No (Unplanned-) Spending Challenge”

  1. Kris10leigh Says:
    1155310640

    My goodness, you sound just like me! I hadn't realized we do things so similarly! That is a long time to go without pay. I work in the schools too, but full time so my salary is 12 months which I've always thought was very convenient. But here's a "glass is half full" kind of way of looking at your situation. At least you are able to earn interest on the money you've had to put aside for the summer. I was toying with the idea a few days ago, but it's not worth the brain activity it takes to think about it because my school district has gone to mandatory 12 month pay. Of course! They get to keep my money intersest.

  2. boomeyers Says:
    1155322712

    You have some really great ideas for keeping your spending in check. I think I need to start doing some things like that too! I will look into that! Good luck to you! You CAN do this! The fun challenge will be to find things for FREE (entertainment, food, etc). Read LRJohnson blog- very helpful!

  3. Dido Says:
    1155329042

    Kristen, I'll be on a 12-month pay cycle next year and it will be a relief. This summer is providing some good life lessons, though!

    Boo, thanks for the reminder to look for the *fun* in the challenge. I live in a town where we are festival-happy, so there's always lots going on.

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