Our FRUgal MOnth is going strong! We have stuck pretty well to the food budget, although the freezer is not nearly as full as it was a few weeks ago. We have made very few purchases and are on track to save our goal amount of $800 extra money above our regular monthly savings.
So far the hardest part of living frugally is how to balance our social and cultural obligations without spending. A couple times I was invited to a cafe with someone I hadn't seen in a while, and I needed to make a game plan before I arrived. I ended up using some of my "allowance" money on a cup of coffee (no Starbucks here...coffee is about a Euro) because it was more important to me to feed the friendship than save a coin. A couple other times I just invited friends to my house and we drank coffee here at home.
We have had some very creative entertainment, including a boy sleepover that was full of laughter and very little sleep. We haven't left the house much, and I have to say I am digging it. My typical Tuesday morning is to take the Little to the babysitter, go to work for an hour or two, and then do a little shopping until I pick her up. I always felt like it wasn't worth it for me to go home and then back out again because I didn't have enough time to actually do anything at home and the time would then be wasted. Instead, this month I have been coming home for an hour before I pick her up, and I have been surprised at the amount of things I can accomplish in that time.
While we are almost finished with our challenge, I am thinking this coming week will be the hardest one for a couple of reasons. First, we are so close to the end, and I have a few things already on the list to buy come next month, that I am fighting the urge to justify the purchase on the basis that I am planning on buying it anyway so it doesn't really make much difference. However, experience has told me that if I hold off on a purchase for a week or a month, I usually don't need what I thought I needed. Second, Husband is traveling for a few days so it will be harder not to cheat and spend "just a couple euros" on a cup of coffee or a treat for the Little.
I'm committed to staying strong, though, because I am excited to report the results next week. Stay tuned...it's gonna be great!