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Day Two of Operation: Frugal Fitness

May 28th, 2006 at 04:21 am

I am so glad I decided to do this now! The first of the month is right around the corner and I've got some serious planning to do. Around this time each year the utility bills get a little smaller due to less consumption; my goal is to help the bills shrink even further by a few small steps:

1. Unplugging what's not in use.
2. Avoiding cooking with the crockpot.
3. Limiting television viewing hours by two hours daily in favor of outside family activity.
4. Showering after PT at the gym in the wee morning hours (since I bathe twice a day, it'll save me some duckets)

Here are my missions for today:

--MISSION ONE:INVENTORY--
Time to check up on home office products. My desk has become a clerical disaster- bills, books, sprays, lotions, change jars, CD's, yikes!!! While I don't have time to clean since I've got a full day (cooking breakfast, church, barbecue, park), I can prepare a list of items i'll need for my trip to Staples tomorrow. So far it looks like I'll need bond paper, tape, and laser cartridges.

--MISSION TWO:RECRUITMENT AND REWARDS--

In order for any plan to work, my family
has to be more involved. While my oldest daughter takes the frugal high road (no more ice cream man spends, recyclable can redemptions, chores for cash exchanges), my husband needs work. I was very happy to see him react to the overpricing of BJ's vs Costco items last week. It's a start, I say! Still, old habits die hard and I can't necessarily say no to his occasional frivolities. I figure I'd present this fitness challenge to both hubby and DD in either of two ways:

1. The "no spend" Jar-- (knock-off of the Changepot)

Since we were extremely close to spending the money yesterday (they got on the line to get their faces painted, we walked to the theater, and DD is ALWAYS a challenge lol), instead of ignoring the sudden willpower, we should put the cash in the jar along with a little note stating what we would have spent it on complete with date and time. This way, we learn just how much we really spend on things with no value. All three no spends had no value after completion (facepainting, a movie, sugary food with little or no nutrition value). The No spend Jar would get a blog of its own (every person in my family has their own blog account- even DD) and we would contribute daily anecdotes under our blogger names. The family member who saves up the most at the end of the year receives a special, custom-designed prize (probably a plaque or engraved item from the engraving store in the mall).

OR

2. The No Spend Exchange Program (kinda like AMEX membership rewards)

For each dollar that is saved by a specific family member, a point is added onto their "credit card". Points will be assigned a specific value per age and interest. For example: DD's point prizes would have the following:

10 points: Manicure at chezMoms
15 points: Playstation privilege 30 mins
20 points: Two night No chore pass
50 points: Learn ten new things with mom (a two hour at home "school" session where I would make a lesson plan for her with ten unique things she'd never learn in school (for example: elemental spelling bees, basic Internet web designing, Latin/French 101, Greek mythology in a day, etc )

The point accruing system would have
specific rules and limitations to avoid over-compensation!

I'll check back in with the results and choice for recruitment later! Have a great day!!!

******************
End-of-day Update:

The vote is in, ladies and gents! My family chose the latter proposal-The No Spend Exchange Program (kinda like AMEX membership rewards) (3/3 votes). The general consensus was the amount of reward points and the ability to "cash in" the points: no black-out dates, no limit spending, etc. I am in the middle of making the credit cards and setting up rewards with some help from AMEX and Citibank.

I didn't save any money on 5/28 because we attended a barbecue and well, we kinda splurged a bit on the treats. It's ok though, I am making progress (I think) lol.

4 Responses to “Day Two of Operation: Frugal Fitness”

  1. mjrube94 Says:

    Way to go! I don't get why you want to use the crockpot less...I always thought that using the crockpot was cheaper than the other methods of cooking...

  2. LuckyRobin Says:

    I think she meant avoiding really cooking (like on the stove or in the oven) by using the crockpot instead. Just a little awkwardly worded.

  3. armywife Says:

    I'd read somewhere on the net that using a crockpot uses alot of electricity so I figured I'd try to skip cooking with it for a while. I'll try to find the article and post it on this blog Smile

  4. Renee McCrory Says:

    I believe I saw that article too at www.dollarstretcher.com

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