grocery game monthly challenge

How To Train Your Spouse To Be A Clever Clogs Food Shopper : The Grocery Game Challenge 2016 #4 May 23-29

HOW TO TRAIN YOUR SPOUSE TO BE A CLEVER CLOGS FOOD SHOPPER

THERE’S NO SHAME IN LEARNING HOW TO BE A SMART SHOPPER   I’m sure that you’ve met someone who thinks they are a clever clogs when it comes to knowing everything about anything there is to know in life. Some may profess to be an expert only to lack the skills needed to complete a task such as being the household food shopper. If you’re tired of always having to do the food shopping because your spouse doesn’t want to take the time to follow your frugal lead then it’s time to get them on-board with a bit of Grocery-101. What is a clever clogs? A bit of humour in this post to get your attention but serious stuff if you are struggling to meet your grocery budget needs because you or your spouse is not participating in the process. The word clever clogs originates in the UK so it’s certainly a term I’m familiar with and now you are. If you’re child is a fan of the television cartoon Peppa Pig you’ll have heard that Edmond Elephant is a bit of a clever clogs. This means a clever clogs is someone who is too clever or commonly called a […]

Almond Joy Cheesecake

ALMOND JOY CHEESECAKE

BRINGING ALMOND JOY CHOCOLATE BAR TO LIFE   There is nothing more decadent than a luscious cheesecake especially my latest creation an Almond Joy Cheesecake. My family loves a luscious cheesecake no matter what the occasion, and are always eager to see what I will come up with next.  An Almond Joy chocolate bar was invented in 1948 and for those of you who may not have it available to you might be familiar with the Bounty Chocolate Bar which is basically the same thing. My family love my baking skills so much that they send me recipes and pictures to make for upcoming occasions. I’ve made a large cheesecake and small cheesecakes to share (sometimes), and mini cheesecakes, perfect for that afternoon sweet-tooth. This past Easter I wanted to do something a bit different for my cheesecake creation. I’ve done the traditional New York cheesecake, the copy-cat Cheesecake Factory cheesecakes, (White Chocolate Raspberry Truffle is my go–to Cheesecake it’s simply divine as well as their pecan pie pumpkin cheesecake (great for Thanksgiving) which turned out fabulous. I even have my older sister who has always been intimidated of baking a cheesecake experimenting in the kitchen successfully making my cheesecake […]

Fun Frugal Adventures For The Victoria Day Long Weekend : The Saturday Weekend Review #173

FUN FRUGAL ADVENTURES FOR THE VICTORIA DAY LONG WEEKEND

TIME TO GET THE SUMMER PARTY STARTED CANADA   It’s the unofficial start of summer for those of us living in Canada kicking off what is known as the Victoria Long Weekend. This is a time when pools and beaches are opened, garage sales are in full-swing and back-yard parties and patios are bustling with fun. Not from Canada? New to Canada? No worries, I had to learn about all the different statutory holidays in Canada when I moved here and it has been great fun exploring my new home What is the Victoria Day Long Weekend? The Victoria Day Long Weekend is a public holiday in Canada that is celebrated on the last Monday before May 25 to celebrate Queen Victoria’s birthday. There are many names for this anticipated May holiday ranging from; May Run May 2-4 Long Weekend Victoria Day Long Weekend May Long Weekend May Long May Two-Four Although many places are closed for this statutory holiday there are some places that will be open for the Victoria Day Long Weekend that you may want to check out. The holiday has been observed in Canada since at least 1845, originally falling on the sovereign’s actual birthday, and […]

Stop Blaming The Government For All Of Your Debt Problems

STOP BLAMING THE GOVERNMENT FOR ALL OF YOUR DEBT PROBLEMS

DEBT= Don’t Ever Buy Things On Credit   Debt for most Canadians is still a reality and likely will be for a long time unless something changes but not necessarily from a political aspect but a personal one. Is the Canadian government to blame for all of our debt problems or should we start taking responsibility for the way we are spending and saving money? The past few days I’ve spent what little free time I have in between working 7 days a week, family responsibility and blogging to catch up with what’s happening in the world of Canadian Finance. With the internet flooded with resent for the Wynne Liberal government who are under fire right now especially with the increase in hydro costs that are creating energy poverty for Canadians who simply can’t afford to pay these price hikes. Our hydro has more than doubled in the past year and our habits have not changed which means we continue to be conscious of utility usage. What’s even worse is there are plans in the works to phase out natural gas, homes will need an energy audit when put up for sale and renovations based on energy efficiency. This is […]

grocery game monthly challenge

How To Chop Your Grocery Costs In Half : The Grocery Game Challenge 2016 #3 May 16-22

HOW TO CHOP YOUR GROCERY COSTS IN HALF

YOUR GROCERY COSTS CAN BE SAVED   I’m sure you think that it’s impossible to cut your grocery costs in half and for some of you it may be challenging but for others who are determined it is possible. The problem with so many people who overspend is realizing that they need to change and put stops in place to stick with it. How much should your grocery budget be? If you don’t know the answer to this question today I’m going to share with you how you might be spending far TOO MUCH on groceries for no reason at all. Let’s examine the ways you may be overspending and how you can chop your expenses without feeling deprived. Just because you grocery shop at a cheaper grocery store doesn’t mean you are winning with your grocery bill. No matter where you grocery shop there will ALWAYS be deals which means not one grocery store is created equally. This is the beauty of consumer marketing at it’s finest. In the event you live in a small town and have one local grocery store being mindful of your grocery expenses may become imperative for those who run their ship on a […]

Five Alive Carrot Cake + Pre-Made Snack Cake Mix

Five ALIVE Carrot Cake

A BAKING MISTAKE SOMETIMES MAKES THE BEST PRODUCT!   I have a long story about this Five Alive Carrot Cake and how it all came together but I’ll keep it as brief as possible since I know you will want to rush to the kitchen to start making it. Trust me when I say it won’t last long and you’ll know what I mean once you take your first bite. If you’re looking for some easy cake recipes that you can make ahead to take to summer parties or back-yard BBQ’s with your family and friends this Five Alive Carrot Cake travels well. Yesterday I noticed that there were no snacks in the house as the kids have been eating me out of house and home. This is not unusual at the moment as both boys are growing like weeds and they are always hungry. On a whim I decided that I would make a banana loaf as I used the one I had stashed in the freezer for soccer practice as a snack last week. Having looked in the fridge (remember I said the boys were growing like weeds) only to find no bananas left meant I wasn’t making […]

Bidding Wars Net Homeowner $60,000 Over Asking Price Before Open House : The Saturday Weekend Review #172

BIDDING WARS NET HOMEOWNER $60,000 OVER ASKING PRICE BEFORE AN OPEN HOUSE

COMING SOON: MULTIPLE OFFERS, BIDDING WARS AND A BULLY OFFER   I suppose selling your house the second time around can be financially rewarding as it was for friends of ours who finally sold their house after having multiple offers which caused bidding wars and all before the first open house. The quiet sought-after area in the Greater Toronto Area where they live rarely has houses come up for sale but that doesn’t mean they WILL sell when they do as our friends found out last year. After a failed attempt at selling their house in early 2015 they gave it another shot this past month to see what would happen. This time around though they took the advice from the potential home buyers who came to their open house when they tried to sell in 2015 for $400,000 with no offers in sight. The house was certainly not over-priced however it needed some work doing to spruce it up more than they already had. Their real estate agent didn’t do the job they expected so this time around they hired a woman who came highly recommended to them. Before they signed any legal and binding papers with her they […]

Retiring Early Should Never Be Expected : April Net Worth Update (+0.97%)

RETIRING EARLY

RETIREMENT AGE IS JUST A NUMBER NOT THE FINISH LINE   Retirement Saving is not easy for many Canadians especially if they are living pay to pay and have a high debt load. Retiring early is a nice dream of flowers and freedom for many of us but the truth is that it should never be expected. How can you save for retirement if you’re living pay to pay, week after week, month after month, year after year. Well, there are ways but you must be willing to spank your finances back into action. This means taking control of the way you spend, save and view the way you should be living in comparison to what you can afford. A budget is what got us started.   Some of the best retirement plans just look good on paper   I remember when our financial advisor told us that we had average retirement savings for our age the wife and I just looked at each other stunned. He said he has clients our age with much more and others with hardly anything at all but that we had a good head-start in the race to retiring early if we wanted too. […]

grocery game monthly challenge

How We Deal With Rude People At The Grocery Store : The Grocery Game Challenge 2016 #2 May 9-15

how we handle rude customers at the grocery store

WHEN YOU JUST WANT TO SCREAM DO THIS INSTEAD AND WATCH THEM CRUMBLE.   I don’t know what it is lately but I seem to be running into rude people everywhere I go. The worst shoppers are at the grocery store especially once Spring finally arrives. It’s as if life is super-charged in the fast-lane when the sun is shining and the white stuff has melted. I’m a happy guy and my wife is generally always smiling because we choose to be happy. We’re not perfect but we channel negativity in such a way that we work on it and find other outlets to deal with it. I understand that some people have “issues” to deal with but taking frustrations out on other people over things you can’t control seems a bit…um, “out there”. It doesn’t matter what time of day you go grocery shopping or what store you choose to spend your money at, you’ll always run into rude people. The last thing you want to worry about or even think about is getting into a heated argument at the grocery store. It’s just groceries, not a grocery game. Related: When is the best time to grocery shop? Last […]

Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups (Low-Carb, Sugar-Free)

low-carb dark chocolate peanut butter cups(1)

HOMEMADE SUGAR-FREE PEANUT BUTTER CUPS THAT SATISFY   You’re looking at a dark chocolate peanut butter cup recipe that is so good you can’t even tell they are a low-carb, sugar-free treat. If you enjoy a low-carb lifestyle and are craving something sweet these chocolate peanut butter cups will cure all. I don’t always eat low-carb and it was hard for me to stop at eating just one of these beauties which are similar to Reece’s Peanut Butter Cups that you can buy at just about every shop. I’m not even a huge peanut butter fan as I didn’t grow up on it like my wife did but when you mix it with chocolate something magical seems to happen. Ya, you know what I mean. My wife and I made these about 3 weeks ago now after she was in serious need of fulfilling her sweet tooth after dinner. Over Christmas we make a chocolate peanut butter ball recipe which is famous with just about anyone we’ve fed them to. We took that concept and created the Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups but we made them in large size muffin liners re-create the Reece’s Peanut Butter Cup. A nice chocolate […]

I’m Not Spending A Dime On My Wife For Mother’s Day : The Saturday Weekend Review #171

why I'm not spending a dime on my wife for Mother's Day

  REACH INTO YOUR HEART AND PULL OUT LOVE NOT MONEY   Now that my wife is a mother and I’m a father we have become part of the Mother’s Day and Father’s Day elite but both of us have chosen not to budget any money for these special days and I’ll tell you why. Everywhere I turn there is another store sign, flyer or online advertisement for Mother’s Day must-have gifts such as Jewellery, Trips, Candle-Lit Dinners, Fresh Flowers, Hand-made chocolates, Day at the Spa. I’m not against any of these extravagant Mother’s Day gifts but to me it seems to take away from the purpose of the day, to celebrate our mother. Not everyone has their mother with them but they are still celebrated with memories and a deep love from with-in the heart. These are some of the ways we need to celebrate Mother’s Day, not lavish gifts. Certainly you could do both but there are plenty of ways to say I love you Mom that doesn’t have to cost you a small fortune. When is Mother’s Day? This year Mother’s Day is on Sunday, May 8, 2016 in Canada. My wife is simple and frugal which […]

3 Budget Preparation Steps Not To Be Missed : Our April 2016 Budget Report

Budget Preparation Steps Not To Be Missed

YOU CAN’T BUILD A BUDGET WITHOUT BLUEPRINTS   Budget preparation is an essential action step that if you pretend you don’t need you’ll never get past GO with your finances! Creating a personal budget doesn’t have to be complicated however the fine details certainly help to assess where existing or potential problems may sneak up.  Using a financial spreadsheet to document everything to do with money coming in and going out of your life is in my opinion an essential tool for everyone, even if you think you don’t need it. You do! Every month before you sit down to figure out your finances there are budget preparation steps that you don’t want to miss. The reason for this is because if you put half the effort into your monthly budget you’ll only get partial or potentially inaccurate results. Like you, budgeting was new for us years ago and took time for us to get to familiar with but over time we can safely say we are in a place where we confidently collect the monthly data we need. If you are one of those people who think you can search the web for a free budget template and think […]