Debt Diet Challenge Update: Week 1 & 2

Week 1: Thursday July 17th 2014 to Thursday July 24th 2014

So… I was afraid, very afraid! I put this out there live in the cyber world and am now accountable! Everyone I know knows what I am up to so there can be NO cheating on this debt diet (I really should do this with a food diet, haha I’d probably have better success!) In reality this week has been a little different as I took a tumble down the stairs and haven’t been out and about much to spend any money. I felt a little ahead of the game on that account. This is kind of like me saying, hmmm thank goodness for that fall as it’s making my debt diet challenge a success! This week I have been made aware of what I spend money on, and in reality what I would not be able to afford, if I REALLY was on a limited income.  When you’re self-employed, there is always opportunity to earn more money.  If I really wanted something, I have always been able to (work hard of course) and solicit more customers into the business.  Let’s get real here though, if I were a single mom on a limited income, things like the post-fall-down-the-stairs massage would not have happened.  My acupuncture that I needed so badly also would not have happened.  Like most single moms, I do not have medical benefits and this challenge has made me very aware of this. The whole point of the challenge is to set up teachable lessons for my daughter and it really was funny during lunch this week trying to keep her attention long enough to talk about money!  She broke into a “Mom, I forgot to tell you something about the cat” conversation…it’s a real good thing we have three more weeks to go!

My Spending Journal for Week 1:

  • Post acupuncture appointment (not included in challenge budget)
  • Syndicate Restaurant for a budget friendly lunch. I absolutely love this place for its Farm to Table organic meats and locally grown produce.  It’s a gourmet menu so we had to be careful on our little budget. I was really quite clever here; even before entering the place I had pre-planned what I was going to order.  I have been here before so this was an easy task. I ordered a Chicken Caesar salad for $12.00 with cooked chicken breast (without seasoning) and steamed carrots for $6.00. Olivia and I discussed our budget and chose water, as water is free! (Lesson #1) Our total bill $20.34 plus a $5.00 tip (Lesson  #2 on tipping)

All in all, the week has been very inexpensive.  A few lessons learned and $70 left to either get through the week or to carry forward!

Check out The Syndicate Restaurant:


Week 2: Thursday July 24th 2014 to Thursday July 31st 2014 Budget $170.00 +$30 for sold wagon on Kijiji! $200.00

Spending Journal for Week 2:

  • Business Meeting: Coffee was a business expense of course, but I forgot my granola bar and bought a breakfast sandwich $5.20
  • Ice cream: $6.00 – Instead of taking the kids out for ice cream, I bought a tub of it at the grocery store. This also gives me the opportunity to see what my options were and choose the better option (Lesson #3)
  • Tip for Cleaning Lady: $5 So I realize that a cleaning service is not usually a part of anyone’s budget but when the schedule permits, I have a cleaner come in for quality control and to give them more hours.
  • Rum for BBQ: My contribution was rum. It is a cheaper option and can be mixed with other drinks.
  • Gas: $63
  • Lunch out for family: $42.00
  • Humane Society Bill (!!!!!): $125.00

This week has been a little different. We have started to run out of items that needed to be purchased again. My biggest expense this week was the humane society tab when my dog got loose! So one city licence and in pound fee later…BOOM!!! I went over budget. I couldn’t leave her locked up for the sake of this challenge, so I paid the $125. This unexpected expense made me wonder…how do other people plan their budget without knowing what expenses might come up?

Does anyone have any suggestions?  

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