**I spent all of my money by Tuesday, but we had fun doing it!
Week 1: $107
Week 2: $111
Week 3: $82 ($0 left for week 4)
Week 4: $25 (stole from fun money!)
Spent this week: $10
Leftover: $0 (I spent every penny!)
I have to admit that I did end up borrowing from the “fun money” category this week because we needed a few grocery items (like sausage and cheese) that are staples in our house to make it to Thursday. In addition to the necessities, I also took Ben on his personal outing for the month and used up the rest of the fun money. We went to GameStop and ogled all of the cool games and merchandise. Afterwards, we ran into the Dollar Tree and Ben chose a finger skateboard set (I had no clue what that even is!) and a St. Patrick’s Day hat (totally a Ben thing) Our next stop was the thrift store where Ben found three shirts that he loved for $1.99 each. We finished our outing by redeeming a Book-it! coupon for a free pizza at Pizza Hut. So for a fun outing we only spent around $10 and made a lot of fun memories.
-I took the kids to see Junie B. Jones the Musical with our homeschool co-op group. **As a bonus, the tickets were only $5 due to it being a school show
-After the show, the kids were irritable because I forgot to pack a snack, so we dropped in at my mom’s and grabbed some sodas, beef jerky, chips, cheese, a stick of butter (needed for breakfast toast), and a few bites of oatmeal candy before heading home (moms are the best). **It is a rule in our family that anything at Mama’s house is a free for all:)
-I got a gift card from my mother in law to Academy Sports on Saturday and to make it even better, I received a $10 off of any purchase card from Academy the day before. So that will stretch the gift card even further.
Frugal February Closing Thoughts
The big question is did I save any money doing a Frugal February?? Well if we look at my normal budget for the month I think the results will speak for themselves.
My Usual Grocery Budget: $500-600 each month
Frugal February Grocery Budget: $300 (A savings of at least $200)
My Usual Monthly Fun Money/Other Budget: $200+ (This includes thrift stores, eating out, outings, Sonic!!!, movies, etc)
Frugal February Fun Money/Other Budget: $100 (At least a $100 savings there as well)
Total saved in February: $300+
**So yes I did save money by having a Frugal February and that is great, but the bigger victory is that I know we can live on an even tighter budget quite easily each month…so beware my family, beware!
Some questions I have received concerning my Frugal February experiment:
What is stopping me from continuing on with my little February experiment each month?
While my family is great and finds my frugalness amusing up to a certain point….I am sure their amusement would not last too long if it became an everyday occurrence. So I will just find little ways to carry the lessons I have learned from a low spend month into the rest of the year….and hope they do not notice too much:)
Was it a waste of time if I am not going to continue on with a tight budget each month?
I do not think so at all. I love doing a Frugal February each year. It helps to refresh my money saving skills and shows me that we can (and have) lived on a lot less money. **To me being on a budget is not a punishment, it is actually a relief. I tend to get more stressed when I am not monitoring my spending closely, so having a monthly spending goal makes me feel more in control of our situation.
Do you spend a lot of money restocking your pantry after a low spend month?
This is a really fair question. I do spend more on groceries the first week off of a low spend month, but nowhere near the amount that I usually save during the month. It is a little fun to go on that first grocery trip where I am not tallying up my spending as I go. For example, the kids requested (and received) things that we ran out of towards the end of the month (like ice cream, chips, etc.) and my husband got two quarts of his favorite low carb yogurt…so everyone was happy:)
Thanks for following along on our little experiment! (And yes I will be doing this again next year!!)
**If you have not tried having a low spend/no spend month before, you should definitely challenge yourself to one. I promise you will learn how little it really takes to keep your home running and your family fed…and save a little money in the process.