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Fri Apr 12, 2019, 11:32 AM

My updated frugal monthly budget and some projects

$1192.00 SSDI
$140.05 Veteran Pension

$1332.05

----------------------------
$10.00 VA Co-pay

$10.00
------------------------
$40.00 Electricity (averaged out over 12 months)
$13.99 Amazon Prime
$11.99 Hulu
$10.00 Great Courses Plus
$25.00 Cell phone with unlimited text and talk
$40.00 Natural gas for heating, hot water and cooking (averaged out over 12 months)
$43.00 water & sewer
$67.00 Land line and internet

$300.43
------------------------
$140.00 Property taxes and homeowners insurance

$140.00
---------------------------
$37.00 Credit card payment
$40.00 Credit card payment
$54.00 Credit card payment

$91.00 (two credit cards should be payed off by mid summer and the third by the end of the year)
---------------------------
$200.00 Food, personal hygiene
$100.00 Miscellaneous, clothing
$25.00 Donation to Kamala Harris campaign
$5.00 DU

$330.00

$1332.05 - $871.43 = $460.62 available for discretionary spending

Food

I'm going bare bones here.

"I averaged out the 7 dinners, the two breakfasts and added the lunch and mid afternoon veggie snack and multiplied that by 30.

I really tried to make sure there was adequate servings of dairy products, grains, vegetables and fruits each day.


Breakfast
Hot cereal breakfast $.91
Cold cereal breakfast $.99
average $.98

Lunch $1.47

Mid afternoon snack $.51

Dinners
Finnish hot dogs in sauce $1.22
Easy Chicken A La King $1.25
Black bean soup $1.17
Chicken chili $1.56
Chicken Stir Fry $1.47
Rotisserie chicken noodle soup $1.68
Sauerkraut and weenies $1.15
average $1.36

$.98 + $1.47 + $.51 + $1.36 = $4.32 x 30 = $129.60"

https://www.democraticunderground.com/11283858#post24

Gas for heat and the water heater

I have the thermostat set to 62 and I'm comfortable while wearing an unbuttoned flannel shirt in addition to my regular clothing. In the past, I've had the thermostat set as low as 55 degrees but I don't want to do that again. The thermostat on the water heater is set to Vacation. I don't use much hot water so vacation setting produces all the hot water I need for showers, washing dishes and washing clothes.

Water

I'll take Navy showers where I wet down, turn off the water, lather up and scrub and then turn the water back on to rinse off. I'll have the tub drain stopper in place so I can transfer the shower water to a plastic storage tote. That water will be used to fill the toilet tank after the toilet is flushed. For now, I'll wash and rinse my clothes in separate plastic tubs. In the future I'll get a hand held clothes washer (the one that looks like a fancy toilet plunger) and a washboard. Will probably get a hand crank clothes wring too as wringing out wet clothes by hand is hard work. I have clothes lines in the basement and I'll set up a dog runner wire between the house and garage when the weather gets better so I can use that as a clothes line.

Electricity

I won't be using the electric dryer. All the lights in the house have led bulbs.

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Arrow 9 replies Author Time Post
Reply My updated frugal monthly budget and some projects (Original post)
Kaleva Apr 2019 OP
masmdu Apr 2019 #1
Kaleva Apr 2019 #2
Kaleva Apr 2019 #3
Kaleva Apr 2019 #4
Kaleva Apr 2019 #5
Kaleva Apr 2019 #6
Kaleva Apr 2019 #7
Kaleva Apr 2019 #8
Kaleva Apr 2019 #9

Response to Kaleva (Original post)

Fri Apr 12, 2019, 12:42 PM

1. You can save $10/month on your cell service

unlimited text and talk AND 3gb of 4g for $15

https://www.mintmobile.com/

I use them and have had no issues.

Hope this helps.

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Response to masmdu (Reply #1)

Fri Apr 12, 2019, 02:12 PM

2. According to the website, coverage is uncertain where I live

But that would be a great deal for those who can get coverage.

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Response to Kaleva (Original post)

Fri Apr 12, 2019, 04:21 PM

3. Set up a recurring $5 a month payment to DU.

Didn't take long.

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Response to Kaleva (Original post)

Fri Apr 12, 2019, 04:23 PM

4. I quickly gave up having the t-stat set at 62

It's back to 70 degrees. I was shivering.

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Response to Kaleva (Original post)

Fri Apr 12, 2019, 04:28 PM

5. Transportation

Called the local transit authority and the lady said she'll have one of the drivers drop off a form in my mail box which I need to fill out and return so I can get the disabled rate of 50% off regular fair. I'll pay .75 cents for a ride instead of $1.50.

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Response to Kaleva (Original post)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 05:29 AM

6. Frugal shopping

The Dollar General store is a little over a 10 minute walk from my house and if one makes a purchase on any day from Sunday through Friday, the receipt will have a coupon attached which is good for the following Saturday only. If one spends at least $25.00 that Saturday, you'll get $5.00 off.

So last Friday I walked to the store and bought a bottle of ketchup for a dollar. I needed ketchup anyways and I wanted that coupon. That evening, I looked at my inventory list of what I needed and looked up prices at the Dollar General website and I knew prices of some products as I shop there often and produced a shopping list where I'd spend just enough to be able to use the coupon.

Saturday I walked to the store with a large, heavy duty, nylon shopping bag with carrying straps to use as I didn't want to attempt to walk back home carrying a number of flimsy plastic bags. I ended up spending a little over $27 so with the coupon, the cost was a little over $22. I was happy!

On Sunday, I walked to the local grocery store which is a little over twice as far from my home as the Dollar General as I needed produce, meats and hopefully frozen orange juice if it was on sale. At the deli, there was rotisserie chicken priced to sell for $1.99 each so I took 4 as I use them for the base of several different meals. 14 oz bags of salad mix and 1 lb bags of baby carrots were on sale for $.99 and I bought 4 of each. Frozen orange juice was on sale for $1.79 and I got 4 which ought to last me a month. Plain greek yogurt wasn't on sale but I bought a container anyways as I needed it for dip and for tuna pasta salad. Salad dressing was on sale for $.99 and I got one bottle of Italian. Purchased two bunches of celery for $1.99 each and two bags each of frozen peas and carrots and frozen peas for $.99 each.

I was very happy with that shopping trip primarily because of the rotisserie chicken. I have the option to make the following meals with that:

Rotisserie chicken noodle soup
Chicken salad (with the salad mix I bought)
Easy Chicken A La King
Rotisserie chicken corn chowder
Chicken salad sandwiches
Chicken and rice
Chicken and stuffing casserole

Monday I didn't do much as my left leg and foot were stinging quite a bit from all that walking.


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Response to Kaleva (Original post)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 10:02 AM

7. Breakfast for $.80

This morning I was given 5 boxes of cold cereal, 3 boxes of Farina, a box of Instant Cream of Wheat containing 12 packs and 4 bags of instant non-fat dry milk. Doing some calculating and looking at my menu, I figure I'd have enough dry milk and cereal for the next three months. The only items I'd need to buy for breakfast would be fruit, frozen orange juice, tomato juice and eggs.

With bananas going for $.79 a pound, a 46 oz jug of tomato juice going for $1.25, eggs at $1.65 a dozen and a 12 fl. oz can of orange juice concentrate at $1.79 (makes 2 quarts of watered down orange juice), I calculate a typical breakfast for me would cost $.80.

1 boiled egg
1 serving of hot or cold cereal
1 8 fl oz serving of tomato juice
1 8 fl oz serving of orange juice
1 banana

As the elderly couple who gave me the cereal and instant milk get that free themselves once a month and don't want it, it's likely I won't have to buy any myself for quite some time.

So the breakfast portion of my food budget will typically cost me just $24 a month.

Woot! Woot!

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Response to Kaleva (Original post)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 11:53 AM

8. Lunch for $.93

Just finished a lunch and doing some calculating on the cost.

Free - 1 cup instant milk (see post about breakfast above)
$.20 - 2 slices whole wheat bread
$.05 - 1 tbsp of grape jelly
$.10 - 2 tbsp of peanut butter
$.33 - 1 1/2 cup of condensed soup
$.05 - 5 saltine crackers (crushed and put into soup)
$.20 - 1 banana

$.93 total cost

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Response to Kaleva (Original post)

Thu Apr 18, 2019, 04:16 PM

9. Dinner for $1.74

Made a chicken and stuffing casserole and my wife and I each had a serving which was half the casserole. Adding up the costs of the ingredients and dividing by 4 gives a cost of $1.12 per serving. We also had a salad and that cost per serving, including the dressing, was $.62. Total cost of the meal per person was $1.74.

$.12 dressing
$.50 salad

$1.00 1 box of stuffing mix
$.20 1 stick of margarine
$.65 1 can of mushroom soup
$.65 1 can of cream of chicken soup
$1.99 1 rotisserie chicken (priced to sell)
$0.00 1 cup of instant milk (bags of instant milk given to me free)

$4.49 total divided by 4 gives cost of $1.12 per serving

$1.74 total cost per serving when salad is added.



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