Keeping the Costs Down-Spring Cleaning in the Canadian Sunshine!

Spring is in the Air! We’ve been waking up to windows open and the sun beaming down on us in our bed with the birds chirping a beautiful song for a couple of weeks now. You know it’s time to get up when all the familiar sounds, sights and smells engulf your space. Visions of cleaning our home inside and out, top to bottom, fill our heads as I’m sure it does yours. Winter is nice to chill out watching a movie by the fire, so what you shovel here and there but the term “lazy winter” is what it is! The first day of  Spring quickly came upon us yesterday March 20 but for weeks now the weather has been more than cooperative all over Canada and the USA. As the snow began to melt the unsightly landscaping of surrounding houses reminded us that this year was our year~ We await the flowers to bloom and the bees to jump about in their glory. This year is the year we are not only tackling our “Spring Cleaning” chores but have to landscape our property before the wildlife mistake it for their new home.  We will also be using “Vinegar” , baking soda and lemons […]

grocery game monthly challenge

The Grocery Game Challenge-March 19-25 Week 4

In light of today being the first day of Spring that means fresh fruit,vegetables and meats will be in our meals more frequently in our home. We love fresh vegetables and fruits for lighter meals in the hot weather. So I thought some juicy red Canadian cherries to be proper as this weeks picture of choice! Well as I mentioned to most of you we will be over budget this month in the grocery budget. I realize that budgets aren’t bullet proof and sometimes we will go over budget- we are human!  We start this week at $244.75 that’s already $54.75 over our $190.00 budget this month.- See all updates at the end of post as this number has changed! There are 2 reasons why we are going over budget 1- We are stockpiling items that are a great price 2- Shoppers Drug Mart 20x point event I don’t know that every time there is a Shoppers Drug Mart event we take part in that we will go over budget but this time we have. We will see our grocery budget eventually go up starting in July as we host students from Europe for the summer. We begin to stockpile items […]

It’s a Spicy Price to Pay for Convenience Foods!

With  most families having both parents working outside the home in Canada convenience in the kitchen seems to be the way to go. Take-out Pizza is on the menu at least once a week and that’s the day parents can simply chill out and get some backlogged house work done or spend time with the family. Is spending over $1000 a year on pizza worth it and at what cost? What other conveniences foods or items do we want in our Kitchen?  *Prepared Food or Spice Packets  Since trying to lower our overall budgeting costs we wanted to find ways to keep the budget with-in reach. Let’s look at Spices and those prepared packets we all buy. How many of you have bags and bottles of spices thrown in a drawer or a cupboard? That’s right I’m talking to you.. I know you are shaking your head saying yes I’m guilty! That’s ok we used to be as well. HOT HOT HOT!! Spice up your Summer cooking with our huge selection of Chili Peppers and powders at SpicesForLess.com I’m betting most of your spices are outdated or stale because you don’t use them often enough. The price of convenience reels you […]

Canadian Stockpiling Tips-Saving Money in the Budget!

STOCKPILE YOUR BUDGET   Every couponer knows that the key to long-term savings is building a successful stockpiling of everyday essentials. Having a variety of items on hand that you paid rock bottom prices for helps eliminate those last-minute, unplanned trips to the grocery store. Stockpiling is not as difficult as it seems and don’t be set-back or intimidated when you see those TV shows on TLC The Learning Channel). We can’t stockpile with coupons to the mass extent they do in the USA but stockpiling in Canada can be done. When you don’t stockpile on everyday products this is where you could end up paying full price. Here are a few tips to help you start, and maintain, a functional stockpile in your own home. More Savings for the Budget Canada- Are you listening?   Plan before you purchase   The first thing you want to do if you are considering stockpiling products is to plan out what you would like to stock, as well as how long you would like it to last.A good stockpile will go a long way if you plan out your shops. For example, if you would like to stockpile laundry detergent enough to […]

grocery game monthly challenge

The Grocery Game Challenge March 12-18 Week 3

This is our weekly grocery shop for March 12- March 18. What was your weekly shop like? Post it in the comment section of this post and you could win a monthly prize of $50 in various Canadian coupons~ see rules and regulations here.  We are now down to $75.09 left to spend for the month on groceries. Let’s see how well we do with this weeks shop.  **Edit** We are over budget already this month. Sometimes you win, sometimes you don’t. Money will have to come from our Emergency Savings to cover the overage. I’ll explain why we went over this month in our March Budget Update! Cheers This weeks grocery shop will be challenging for us since we spend a bulk of our grocery budget last week.  Once I tally up all our shops for this week will have a better understanding where we stand. Next weeks shop will be our last for the month as we will do a no-shop week that week. Today we did our first shop of the week at Shoppers Drug Mart and picked up a Sunday/Monday special for Sugar at $1.99. We also stopped in to Zehrs for a few pink sticker deals! […]

grocery game monthly challenge

The Grocery Game Challenge March 5-March 11/Week 2

This is our weekly grocery shop for March 5- March 11. What was your weekly shop like? Post it in the comment section of this post and you could win a monthly prize of $50 in various Canadian coupons~ see rules and regulations here. We had this weeks shop planned and knew we would spend more than the $64 a week we have budgeted for on groceries. With the Shoppers Drug Mart Spend $75 get 18,500 Optimum Points we were already over budget. A fan asked what we do when we overspend at the grocery store in our weekly budget. This week was a good example and below was my answer to her. So far we have spent a total of $114.91 which is $50.91 over budget this week and we are still not done shopping. When we spend over budget one week this means we have less to spend in the following weeks. In this case we have $75.09 left to spend for the month $190.00-$114.91. We don’t want to spend more than the $190.00 a month. We will see what happens. We hit up a few stores for our shopping this week Shoppers Drug Mart, Food Basics and […]

Tips to Curb Emotional Spending and Not Break the Budget

Have you ever found yourself bored and decided to go shopping? Did you have a rough day at work or a spat with someone and find yourself at the mall? Mall shopping ropes you into spending and your brain turns to mush. These may be  situations where you shop with your emotions rather than shopping for what you need.  We don’t go into the mall often but when we do we are overwhelmed with the various shops,signs,sales and smell of food, all of which are so enticing. So we are walking through the mall then all of a sudden…….Mmmm People go mad for this stuff? ~  Has this been you? The  strong aroma of popcorn at Kernels Popcorn forces you to do a 360 , nose in the air  and nothing else matters.  You get to the counter looking for samples, you ask for various flavours. They agree and the  first  double caramel corn melts in your mouth and then immediately money melts from your pocket. “Thanks and come again”, she says as you walk away with your LARGE bag of golden popped nuggets. I bet you’re laughing because you know you have done this or thought about it but convinced yourself NO! Tip: […]

grocery game monthly challenge

The Grocery Game Challenge March 2012 Week 1

I realized last night after a reader emailed me that March is beginning in the middle of a week. Since we did not do a shop this week I wasn’t going to post the challenge. We only shop 3 weeks a month and leave one week shop free. Since some months can get confusing with them beginning in the middle of a week I thought I should post something. Even though we are not shopping you might be shopping and it’s important to recognize that. So this post is to say, we did not shop Monday  Feb 27-  Sunday Mar 4 but if you do then please post your shop in the comment section below. Once approved I will award you a ballot number for March. The most important parts of this challenge is for you to… stay with-in your budget, show other how well you shopped and used coupons how you did not give in to temptation-tell us.. did you put that big bag of chips back because you didn’t need them? How much did you spend during your shop Were you happy with the outcome Could you improve your shop Congratulations again  to Shelley C our February Grocery […]

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