December 2013 Net Worth Update (+1.01%): Yearly outcome on target

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NOTHING IS FOR CERTAIN NOT EVEN FINANCES   We weren’t too sure if we were going to be on target to reach our yearly 2013 net worth goals but after running the numbers we were pleasantly surprised that we made it through as planned.   Should you celebrate success if the money is not in the bank? What I mean by that it is should you celebrate when you are merely seeing numbers on paper or on your computer screen not cash in the bank? After all it could change depending on how you have your money invested and/or what it is invested in. Have you met your targets? Sure, go ahead and celebrate you’ve reached a milestone and there is no reason why you shouldn’t be proud of the accomplishments you’ve made over the course of the year. Nothing is for certain but what you do know is that you’ve worked hard to make sure your numbers are on target and continue to meet or exceed the goals you set forth at the beginning of the year. It’s not an easy road to walk but with optimism and perseverance anything is possible. I think when we understand that our […]

Budget Update December 2013: Our year in review

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ANOTHER YEAR HAS COME AND GONE   If you want to start using a budget there is no better time than now. Stop procrastinating because no one is perfect and almost everyone has some form of debt they’d like to get rid of. There’s no shame in taking the first step towards living a debt-free life if that is your goal. December came in like lightning and went out just as fast because we are now 6 days into 2014 and I’m excited to share our budget update with all of you. As you will see below we ran all of the numbers for 2013 to see just how we made out using our budgeted numbers and whether we needed to make any changes. We’ve never professed to be perfect, gosh we are far from it and our yearly budget numbers will show you that although we did budget we spent more than we anticipated. Although we had the money for the overage it still wasn’t good enough for us because if we didn’t, that money would have to come from somewhere.   Unexpected expenses   Most people have to turn to a credit card, line of credit or like […]

How to survive a winter storm with no power

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MAKING IT THROUGH THE STORM   While the ice storm that we had this week in Ontario created quite a sight to see, sparkling trees covered in glistening ice and an ice covering over everything, this Winter Wonderland also came with a lot of destruction, inconveniences for many and sadly a couple of deaths. With hundreds of thousands of people losing their power there are still a number of people who are waiting for theirs to come back on, 48 hours or more after the storm while others enjoyed Christmas Day in the warmth of their homes. Being prepared for an extended power outage can make getting through those long, cold days less of a struggle. The recent cold snap hasn’t helped the situation.   Staying Warm   Having no power means no heat in your home. Staying warm will be a challenge if you are not prepared. We had a little notice that this storm was coming and I have to admit I was not as prepared as I could have been. Beyond having lots of blankets and warm sweaters to put on, seeking out warming stations that many cities provided would have been an option if our power […]

grocery game monthly challenge

The Grocery Game Challenge Dec 23-29, 2013 #4- Final grocery budget yearly analysis

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GROCERY BUDGET YEAR-END REVIEW   Where has the 2013 year gone because it certainly seems like it’s flown by since we posted the first Grocery Game Challenge post in January. This year has certainly proven that we can get over any hurdles we create with our grocery budget but not without turbulence. There were a few months that we spent more than the grocery budget of $235.00 per month and it took a while to get back on track. Some of the items either purchased on the stockpile budget or just included in the main shop were bought to accumulate so it will become cheaper for certain items throughout this coming year. A prime example of this is the “Clear Shampoo” which was at an unbelievable bargain of $0.99, which has led to acquiring approximately a year’s supply. To be honest it didn’t feel so good having to spend less and less each month so we hope that next year we can try our hardest to stay out of the stores when we don’t need to be in them and to stick to the grocery budget. In 2014 we will likely start using the Checkout 51 program so we can […]

Black Friday: Not just a one day sale anymore

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SAVE NOW ON BLACK FRIDAY SPECIALS   No more crossing the border for Black Friday as the sales are set to begin on our home turf, many starting today or at the stroke of midnight. If you are not sure what to expect for Black Friday 2013 which falls on Friday, November 29 this year get ready to save some serious cash if you know what you are looking for. Black Friday is just about here and in some places the lines of people camping out in some cases for days at a time have already begun. There are lots of great deals to be found on Black Friday, many of which are in limited quantities meaning a lot of people are hoping to get their hands on one and many who have been unable to in the past. With Black Friday planned around the American Thanksgiving and originally being only an American sale day, Canadian retailers are trying their best to keep Canadians shopping for some exclusive Black Friday deals in Canada. As part of an attempt to keep more Canadians shopping at home instead of crossing over the border into the United States, many retailers are now offering, […]

October 2013 Net Worth update:(+1.94%) Defending spending habits

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SPENDING TOO MUCH – ARE YOU DEFENSE SPENDING? Using our budget as a spend tracker has been our saving grace this past couple of years but recently we’ve been spending more money. In our budget update for October we recognized the need for a flexible spending plan but also a plan to continue saving our money. If you always have to justify your purchases then chances are you likely don’t need to spend the money and your defending your spending habits. I don’t think we went too far overboard in October but we certainly spent far more than anticipated once again. In our October budget update I talked about romance and money and how that affected our budget this past month. I also wondered whether many others feel the same crunch with seasonal spending. Seasonal spending is where you spend money just because you think you need to buy something for someone or yourself because the weather starts to get cold, you are indoors more and the holidays are right around the corner. If you spend money just because you think you have to it could really dent your budget and your overall net worth like it has for us […]

Bust our budget October 2013: Romance and money

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BUDGET CATCH UP IN EFFECT   Just when you think you have everything under control life throws you lemons. You know that you can’t spend more than you earn but inside your head you say it’s ok to spend a bit more because you are worth it. Sure you could spend cash if you have extra money and no debt like us but it’s also important to realize why you are budgeting in the first place and whether your budget needs to be tweaked to fit your lifestyle.   In September we thought for sure that expenses would cool down a bit and they did for October just not as much as we would have liked. As you will see below we didn’t save a whole heck of a lot of money in our savings account but we did manage to balance the budget as per usual. I had to spend money for work as well we bought a universal home gym second-hand which cost us a bit of money. I have some gym equipment that we have been using but I wanted more weights and the system was a great price so I wasted no time picking it up. […]

grocery game monthly challenge

The Grocery Game Challenge Oct 28-Nov 3, 2013 #4- When the price is right and wrong

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I’LL TAKE TEN AT THAT PRICE…NOT!   For the most part as customers we expect product pricing to be accurate when we grocery shop. I’m betting that a good majority of people don’t watch the computer screen when their order is being scanned in. Not being mindful at the cash may mean you might miss out on opportunities to score some freebies and or help the store to correct issues in the system and in this case today outside of the scanning system.   Speak up and help   As a regular customer to a few local grocery stores I always do my best to help the store out if I see a problem and I at least hope they appreciate it. In my eyes we are the watch dogs for the grocery store because it’s such an intense system that even the slightest error could cause a customer to get upset or in this case laugh a little, OK I laughed lots. I don’t know about you but I’m pretty sure my wages won’t allow for me to purchase a box of Kraft Dinner at $172 a box. I’m also pretty sure that I’ll never have an opportunity to […]