Wednesday, September 23, 2015

In the piggy bank

Dear Internet,

Right now, across dozens of sites, there are abandoned shopping carts. Abandoned by me. Probably 3, just today. I admit I love online shopping (H. calls it "secret shopping") and in my efforts to save money, I've loaded up and then skipped town empty-handed. It's so depressing.

Izzy's bagel budget has been slashed.
To aid my efforts, I've taken a couple drastic measures to keep my dollars.

1. I unsubscribed

I'm sorry, Digital Marketers. I have unsubscribed to a boatload of retailer emails lately. I'm a sucker for a sale, and they know it. So, step 1: unsubscribe. I already know it's made a difference. I think the mail guy at work knows something's up because I haven't gotten a package in weeks.

2. I shopped around

I recently discovered something: Amazon Fresh. I am a little unhappy to admit it, but Amazon Fresh - Amazon's grocery service - is kind of amazing. A lot of items are so much cheaper than my local stores, cheaper then Target even, and delivered right to my door at a time I choose. I'm sorry local grocery stores, but you do suck so I'm not that sorry. Get a decent produce section, for goodness sake. I've also made notes where Trader Joe's is cheaper, so I know what to get from TJ's, what to get from Amazon, or what is actually a bit cheaper from a local store. It's more footwork to shop around, but worth it for deals.

 3. I sold some junk on eBay

I hadn't done this in a few years, but I recently sold a bunch of things on eBay - all clothes, and mostly H's old Levi's.

I underestimated the cost on shipping on most items, which was super annoying. In the end, after shipping and eBay and PayPal fees, I probably only made $30. So is it worth it? I dunno. But that's $30 for groceries, I guess. Maybe if I was better at it/had more patience for it, I could do better.

4. I packed my lunch

When I consistently pack my/our lunches, it saves a ton of money, and happily, we've been pretty good about this in the past few weeks. Long-term, this is probably the best money-saving measure I can take.

5. I made dinner

Possibly this should just be 4.1., an addendum to the last trick. We order take out a lot. If you look at my order history on Grub Hub, it's actually embarrassing. Also, I eat a lot of burritos. Alas, the burrito days are over, or at least not as often.

No more begging on the street, kid.
What's next? I would love loooooove LOVE to cancel cable. I dream of telling Time Warner to make like a tree. We have Netflix, we have Chromecast. I'm open to Apple TV or Roku or anything else - but until English Premiere League soccer is available via one of those channels*, I'm afraid we'll have to keep the chord to keep H. happy.

Anyway. That's me. Do you have any more tried and true tips to keep your spending under control?

* - I know that NBC Live Extra does have an app but unless you have a cable subscription you can't access all the games.

Monday, September 7, 2015

The death of money

Oh, severe post title, right? That's just a cheap way to combine my topic with some photos I took today at the Green-Wood Cemetery.

Well, money, we had an ok run, but our time is up. I know I've said it before, but I mean it this time: we are on a strict budget.

We are determined to move out of this apartment at the end of our lease next summer. Yeah, we said it before. Several times. But several factors had us putting it off. No longer! We are out. Take note, Landlord! Also, we are buying a car. Take note, Car Salespersons!

So, in order to finance this move, we are on a budget. Which includes, but is not limited to: no more vacations.

Uggggh. That's the worst part of a budget. I love vacations! But no more until next July-ish. Excluding an upcoming to Gettysburg (a birthday present from me to my Civil War-obsessed love), a trip to London (a work trip, mostly) and Toronto at Christmas.

Other money-saving endeavors include; packing my lunch (like olden times), fewer burritos, and being less wasteful about grocery shopping and food wastage. Watch out, quinoa sitting in my cupboard!

So, here we are. On a budget. Wish me luck/send me your recipes for frozen spinach.

Wednesday, September 2, 2015


Just some pics from the weekend of L. and his new bubble contraption.

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