March 2016 Plans

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I’ve got to be honest, this is one lady who is ready for spring!  I am craving sunlight and flowers in my yard.  Cups of coffee while watching the boys play, and the start of some outdoor projects that will go a long way to making this house feel more like home.

Here’s a look at my plans for March:

Food:

  • I have only one plan here. Eat soup.  We live near the factory that makes all the soup for Panera and other restaurants/grocery chains.  Every few months they have case sales to unload extra inventory and it can be purchased for a steal. As in $5 to $10 cases of soup that contain up to 16 pounds of soup.  Well, I got a little over zealous in my purchases of said soup and we have approximately 20 4lb bags of soup right now.  It is taking up a huge amount of space in the freezer- which means I can’t defrost it.  We are also heading into warm weather when no one will want to eat soup. So for this month and next month my food goal will be – eat soup.

Finance:

  • My husband was looking at trading in one of our vehicles.  I need to work some additional savings for this into our budget.
  • I ordered the HD Antenna and it arrived.  Now we need to test it out and make a final decision about whether or not we are going to cancel cable.  I’m ready- my husband is still on the fence.
Family/Fun:
  • We are pretty busy this month.  I would like to plan two family activities though.  It will likely be a fly by the seat of our pants plan.
  • It is my husbands birthday this week.  I’ve got a cake ready to go and will have the kids make a card.
  • I am going to a scrapbooking crop with my mom.  I am really looking forward to this!
Fitness:
  • Continue to exercise at least 4 days a week.
  • Drink more water.  I have no excuse.
Home:
  • Clean and organize the storage cabinet in the 1/2 bath where my husband and I keep all of our toiletries.
  • Purchase new pillows and a throw for the sofa.  Something bright and cheery!
  • Purchase a decorative pillow for our bedroom.  Hang up pictures that we already own.
  • Spend some time outside on warm days.  I want to dig up some flowers that have spread a bit too much.
  • We are going to build a playhouse for our boys.  We plan to follow this tutorial here.  It will take a few weekends so we are going to start at the end of the month.
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Month in Review [February 2016]

 

Good Morning!  It is going to be a beautiful week here in Rhode Island for the month of March.  I am craving the warm spring weather!  Before we move forward how about a peek at what did and did not happen in February?

Food:

  • make cookies, pizza sauce, and spaghetti sauce for the freezer. I didn’t get to pizza sauce or cookies.  I did make spaghetti sauce though and it is delicious.  Perfect for sneaking in veggies to picky eaters.  You can find the recipe here.
  • try 2 new recipes: Taco Pasta Casserole and Green Chili Rice Casserole.  Both are freezer friendly. I did make both of these.  The Green Chile Rice (recipe) was great and my boys both raved about the Taco Pasta Casserole (recipe) too. 
  • Clean out the freezer above the fridge.  Use up all odds and ends.  Once finished move on to the upright freezer downstairs.  Defrost the upright freezer. We were able to clear out the freezer above the fridge and I cleaned out and rearranged the upright freezer.  I did not defrost it yet.  There is just too much soup still. 
Finance:
  • continue to research savings in any areas we can.  Specifically cellphones, vehicle insurance, etc. We made a stop at our cellphone provider.  After some review it turns out we have a better plan than they currently offer.  Once the payment for the phones are paid (there are 3 more)  we will see our bill come down $60.00.  We’ve decided that this is satisfactory for us at present. 
  • take a look at my credit card points and see if we can use them to purchase some gift cards to use for upcoming birthdays.    We decided to hold out using these until Christmas.  Money is usually tighter at that time of year.
  • January had an extra pay period so we are trying to figure out how to allocate that money.  We will pay off one credit card for certain. I am about to pay off one credit card today (I had to wait for the updated bill.)  Woohoo!  The rest of the money is going to go to paying a medical bill and car tax.  I will also use some to purchase some spring clothes for myself.  I haven’t bought myself spring clothes in years and I need a wardrobe beyond yoga pants.
Family/Fun:
  • We have a family fun day planned for the science museum (free admission) as well as going to see Star Wars.  I will bring snacks and drinks from home on both adventures.
  • Have 2 stay at home dates with my husband.  There are several movies available at Redbox we would like to see.  I am hoping I can find a code to get them for free.
  • February school break is coming up.  I found out there are 2 science shows at a local mall for free.  My mom has offered babysitting for the little one so I can take my 5 year old.  I will be researching other fun and free activities this week.
Fitness:
  • continue to exercise at least 4 days a week.  I had done pretty well with this until I got ill in January. I did  better in February.  I really enjoy walking and now that it is warming up a little it should be easier to make it happen.
  • drink more water.  I have no excuse. I did a little better.  Not great though….
Home:
  • clean and organize the storage cabinet in the 1/2 bath where my husband and I keep all of our toiletries. I didn’t get to this yet.
  • purchase new pillows for our bed. I was able to get two pillows on sale at Target for 25% off! 
  • purchase new shades for our bedroom if I can catch a great sale.  I ordered the shades from JC Penney at 50% off plus free shipping.  The only issue is that they won’t arrive until May.  I figure we can wait since we’ve lived with out them for this long. 
  • spend some time cleaning out the basement storage area.  It got really messy over the holidays.  I need to make room for more shelving to hold pantry supplies.  I made some headway with this.  I cleaned up quite a bit and ordered the shelves. 

So there you have it- another month in the books.  I hope you had a great February.  I know I am excited to see what March brings!

February 2016 Plans

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I am finally getting around to setting some goals for February despite being a week into the month.  Where does the time go?  With any luck this month will be more productive than January turned out to be.  Fingers crossed!

 

Food:

  • make cookies, pizza sauce, and spaghetti sauce for the freezer.
  • try 2 new recipes: Taco Pasta Casserole and Green Chili Rice Casserole.  Both are freezer friendly.
  • Clean out the freezer above the fridge.  Use up all odds and ends.  Once finished move on to the upright freezer downstairs.  Defrost the upright freezer.
Finance:
  • continue to research savings in any areas we can.  Specifically cellphones, vehicle insurance, etc.
  • take a look at my credit card points and see if we can use them to purchase some gift cards to use for upcoming birthdays.
  • January had an extra pay period so we are trying to figure out how to allocate that money.  We will pay off one credit card for certain.
Family/Fun:
  • We have a family fun day planned for the science museum (free admission) as well as going to see Star Wars.  I will bring snacks and drinks from home on both adventures.
  • Have 2 stay at home dates with my husband.  There are several movies available at Redbox we would like to see.  I am hoping I can find a code to get them for free.
  • February school break is coming up.  I found out there are 2 science shows at a local mall for free.  My mom has offered babysitting for the little one so I can take my 5 year old.  I will be researching other fun and free activities this week.
Fitness:
  • continue to exercise at least 4 days a week.  I had done pretty well with this until I got ill in January.
  • drink more water.  I have no excuse.
Home:
  • clean and organize the storage cabinet in the 1/2 bath where my husband and I keep all of our toiletries.
  • purchase new pillows for our bed.
  • purchase new shades for our bedroom if I can catch a great sale.
  • spend some time cleaning out the basement storage area.  It got really messy over the holidays.  I need to make room for more shelving to hold pantry supplies.

January 2016 Plans [Month in Review]

Can you believe that January 2016 is already in the books?  Getting sick in January really slowed me down.  Here’s what did and did not happen:

Food:

  • make cookies, muffins, taco meat, pizza sauce, and spaghetti sauce for the freezer.  I made muffins, taco meat, sloppy joes, and meatloaf.
  • eat from the freezer to make room for the above.  We have a gazillion pounds of soup in there.  We’ll have soup at least once a week to thin it out.  When I got sick we used up some freezer items.  We did eat some soup and I gave some away to my mom.
  • begin shopping for a 3 month supply of groceries (will share my list/plan soon) You can see my plan here.  I purchased lots of pasta, canned tomato sauce, and water in January.
Finance:
  • iron out 1st quarter budget.  Decide what envelopes (sinking funds) we are going to fill for January.  This remains a work in progress.  We had a few things pop up and adjustments need to be made. 
  • look for savings in the following areas- insurance (vehicle), cell phones, cable (not ready to “cut the cord” but I know researching our options will take time.)  Still a work in progress.  We did agree to go ahead and order an HD Antenna which I will take from Februarys budget.
  • start gathering yard sale items from around the house.  I did put some things aside.

Family/Fun:

  • plan two family days (one trip to the Children’s Museum and a trip to the new library?)  Didn’t happen.  Darn pneumonia!
  • plan two date nights (Done! we are going to a 40th birthday party and have plans to go out with my brother and SIL)  We just went out last night.  So 50/50!
  • read two books (I am almost finished with Dark Places and have a huge stack of books waiting for me)  I actually read 3!  Lots of time resting in bed.
  • start our 2016 Project Life family album.  Nope. Sad face.
Fitness:
  • drink 8 glasses of water a day and manage my diet better.  I did a little better.
  • exercise at least 4 days a week (I have an exercise bike- I want to find some free videos for cardio on YouTube or via the library to use as well.  If weather permits I will also walk.)  I started off strong and actually lost 5 pounds.  Can’t wait to feel better and get back to this!
Home:
  • try one Pinterest Project.  I am hoping to make a quick apron to gift someone should it turn out well.  Nope.
  • work on setting a better daily schedule.  and…..nope.

Hoping for a more productive February. How was everyone else’s January? Did you accomplish all you wanted to?

January 2016 Plans

Every year I start off by saying “I can’t believe how fast 20xx went by!”  I mean it! I really truly felt like 2015 was a flash- time seemed to always get away from me and I was left with the feeling I could have done more.

I hope to be more intentional in 2016.  My plan is to set some simple and achievable goals each month and take it one step at a time.  With any luck by the end of the year I will feel as though much more was accomplished.

So lets start with a peek into January shall we?

Food:

  • make cookies, muffins, taco meat, pizza sauce, and spaghetti sauce for the freezer
  • eat from the freezer to make room for the above.  We have a gazillion pounds of soup in there.  We’ll have soup at least once a week to thin it out.
  • begin shopping for a 3 month supply of groceries (will share my list/plan soon)
Finance:
  • iron out 1st quarter budget.  Decide what envelopes (sinking funds) we are going to fill for January.
  • look for savings in the following areas- insurance (vehicle), cell phones, cable (not ready to “cut the cord” but I know researching our options will take time.)
  • start gathering yard sale items from around the house.
Family/Fun:
  • plan two family days (one trip to the Children’s Museum and a trip to the new library?)
  • plan two date nights (Done! we are going to a 40th birthday party and have plans to go out with my brother and SIL)
  • read two books (I am almost finished with Dark Places and have a huge stack of books waiting for me)
  • start our 2016 Project Life family album
Fitness:
  • drink 8 glasses of water a day and manage my diet better.
  • exercise at least 4 days a week (I have an exercise bike- I want to find some free videos for cardio on YouTube or via the library to use as well.  If weather permits I will also walk.)
Home:
  • try one Pinterest Project.  I am hoping to make a quick apron to gift someone should it turn out well.
  • work on setting a better daily schedule.
I think this should keep me pretty busy!  In fact I better go get started!