If you are currently experiencing tons of snow and cold temperatures I feel for you. February always felt like such a long way away from Spring when we lived in Alberta. Here on Vancouver Island we are experiencing a lot of rain which is our typical winter. We have had no snow which is unusual, it usually snows at least once a year.Apparently the weather gods heard I bought a second shovel in anticipation of the big snow dump and decided against it. The back lawn is so saturated it feels a bit like a swamp when you step on it. Our puppy Buddy thinks we are crazy for trying to convince him he needs to do his business outside when it is dark, windy and raining sideways. He looks like I am punishing him but we figured out if we take a flashlight out and stand in the rain with him eventually it will happen - he is a fast learner.
I tallied up all our grocery purchases in January which included 3 adults and all food/cleaning/over the counter medications and nonfood products. The goal was $650 and we ended up at $660. Fairly close. Now that my stepdaughter has moved out the budget is being reduced to $450. It wouldn't be so difficult to stay on track except we spend so much on over the counter medications for our various maladies. Only about half of it is actual food. I was going to increase it a little but have decided against that as we are sending money to my stepdaughter so the extra will go to that.
As previously posted I have a goal this year of paying for Christmas with as little cash as possible. The total budget is $1000 for 4 kids and two parents. We don't gift throughout the year except on birthdays and the kids are definitely not spoiled so we do spend a bit on them at Christmas because we want to and because we can afford to. Hopefully, we have to spend less hard earned cash this year and can take advantage of more points/freebies to lessen the cost. So far:
$25 Walmartphotocentre.ca credit from late order in Dec 2014
$27.68 Amazon.ca GCs from using Swagbucks
$20 PC Plus points from Shopping at Superstore
$77.46 Cash Infolinks blog income
$10 in Shoppers Drug Mart points
The year started off with a bang in this regard. I cashed out my blog income and took advertising off my blog because it became a pain in the but. That $77.46 went into my savings account earmarked for the Christmas fund. I have already earned $25 in amazon.ca GCs from using Swagbucks this year and added that to the $2.68 left over from last year.
If you wish to join I would appreciate you using my affiliate link:
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Since joining Swagbucks 4 years ago I have earned $480 in gift certificates. You earn by watching videos, playing games, answering polls and the easiest is downloading their chrome extension where by doing searches you can win Swagbucks (it takes approximately 10 searches before you may see a win). If you join and refer others they have a special right now that anyone you refer you will receive 10% of their lifetime earnings - a great deal for doing nothing. I only spend a few minutes a day on it - they don't expire and it is a great way if on a tight budget to earn gift certificates for gifts or extras in your home . Last year I used $80 and bought hubby a workout heart monitor which he uses daily. They recently changed how they email out amazon Gift certificate codes and now I usually receive them within a couple days of ordering them instead of weeks like previously.
I have been a bit homebound so almost no shopping this week as with Buddy in the house we have been watching him like a hawk and taking him outside every 90 minutes. As he gets older he can hold it longer. We are so happy we have him - he brings joy to us every day. More Puppy pictures later - I figured we needed one Puppy photo free post lol.