This post about our family budget meal plan contains affiliate links at no additional cost to you. Thank you so much for supporting Pennies Into Pearls by using my links!
November is the start of the holiday season! It’s the time when things can get out of control with your meal plan and food budget if you’re not careful. Family gatherings, treats at the kids school, or parties with friends, it can all add up!
This month, I am committed to sharing with you how my family deals with all of these “unforeseen” events and plans for them as much as possible.
Going into debt for Christmas is not an option for us Pearls! Christmas on a budget is the opposite of a bad thing! It means that you will have strategically told your money what you want it do this Christmas rather than wondering where it went.
CNBC.com reported last January that on average most Americans went into over $1,000 in debt for Christmas alone. It will take those families month’s to pay it off and will end up paying a ridiculous amount in interest. So much for that “black friday sale”!
If only they took 30 minutes to sit down and write out their Christmas budget…
This post contains affiliate links at no additional cost to you. Thank you so much for supporting Pennies Into Pearls by using my links!
Meal planning for beginners might sound complicated and overwhelming at first, but give it a try and use this free meal plan to help make the process a lot easier!
Last month hubby and I completed our first ever Whole30 and it was awesome! We pretty much just ate meat, eggs, fruits, and lots of veggies for 30 days. The process is to help us figure out what foods our body can use best. Along the process we are also developing a lot healthier lifestyle!
We have learned a lot in the past 50 days but my favorite thing is we are learning how to balance organic eating with a small budget.
Did you guys know that Ibotta and I share the same birthday month!? It’s like our grocery bond was meant to be before either of us even existed here on this earth!
Because it’s their birthday (and I’m going to pretend like they are celebrating my birthday too…), between October 2-7 they are going to be giving away $1,000 a day to a lucky Ibotta shopper!
To be entered to win, post on Twitter or Instagram why you love Ibotta and how it’s helped your life, using the hashtag #IbottaversaryGiveaway. Visit the Ibotta blog for more details, and in the meantime, keep earning cash back with the free Ibotta app.
Remember how our family used to spend over $1,000 a month on food? Remember how when we were spending that insane amount of money each month it was just for hubby and I? As in, “party of two”. Crazy!
Once I finally realized how much money and food we were wasting, I made it my mission to save as much money as possible on our grocery budget. That is when I first fell in love with Ibotta.
My qualifications for cash back apps to save money were as follows:
Must be easy & fast to use
Must save me money
Gift card or cash (Paypal or Venmo) opportunities to redeem cash back
Then once I get all my groceries home, I will quickly open the app and search the two stores that I just went shopping at to see if there are any rebates that apply to my groceries. There are usually 3-4 that I can claim. This saves me around $5 each time I use the app.
If that doesn’t sound like much, trust me! The three minutes that it takes me to save $5 is 100% worth it! These small savings add up quick and once you hit $20 you can cash out in PayPal or Venmo, or choose from a bunch of really awesome gift cards! I usually choose Target and treat myself to a well deserved “mom’s only” snack!
If you are new to Ibotta, sign upusing this link and you will automatically get $10 after you claim your first rebate! So easy!
This week the rebate I am most excited about has to be $4.00 cash back on a tri-tip steak or roast! I mean, how often do you get to save money on buying meat!? Great opportunity to save! Whenever Ibotta has cash back offers on meat, I claim them ASAP!
All offers were valid as of publish date. Don’t forget to check your app for details as offers change frequently and may not be available in all areas.
October 2018 Monthly Meal Planning for Beginners PRINTABLE
Do you want to get my monthly meal plan printables earlier? If you sign up for my weekly newsletter, you will get them the week before the new month starts! Pretty handy right?
You can download this month’s budget friendly meal plan here.
October 2018 Grocery Haul
Take a peek at what it looks like to buy all non-perishable or freezable groceries for this exact meal plan.
I’d love to hear any questions you have! Leave them down in the comments below!
If it isn’t already, paying off debt needs to become your number one priority! When you live with debt, you are literally risking the roof being stripped away from your family. Living with debt is making you rely on someone else’s money for survival.
It’s time to become more self reliant and start paying off debt!
You probably don’t even realize it yet, but chances are you are living with a few subtle habits that are eroding the stepping stones for you to start paying off debt. Let’s shine some light on those habits to help you quit!
Our Debt Free Story
Back in 2012 there were two major goals hubby and I wanted more than anything! We wanted desperately for me to be able to quit my job to be a stay at home mom. We wanted to buy our first home in one of the most expensive cities in the country in order stay close to family.
The problem was that we owed over $20,000 in debt and those payments we were making made it impossible to put money into savings.
That’s when we realized we couldn’t move forward with any of our life goals with that debt weighing us down!
After a couple years of trial and error, we realized we had a few bad habits that needed to be broken if we wanted to get ahead of our debt!
3 Habits Holding You Back From Getting Serious About Paying Off Debt
1.Stop fighting about money with your spouse!
First and foremost, you need to get on the same page about finances with your spouse! You both need to have a clear picture of where you want to go. If you don’t know where you want to go then it’s impossible to know which path to take!
That is why so many couples can’t seem to look eye to eye when it comes to their finances. Sit down together and write out all your dreams for the next 1, 5, and 10 years. Then come together to figure out your financial action plan to start making those dreams a reality!
Once you both realize that these financial steps are actually getting you closer to what you both prioritize in life, it’s a lot easier to stay motivated and pay off that debt!
I created a Financial Unity Workbook to help you through this process quickly and painless.
2. Stop eating out and start meal planning!
You’re gonna need to find some extra cash to start suffocating that debt. The fastest way to find that cash is to take a look at how much you are spending on food each month!
CNBC last year reported that the average American household on average spends over $3,000 a year on eating out! Crazy! That doesn’t even include how much food waste (which equals wasted cash!) is happening within the home.
How much faster would you pay off your debt if you had an extra $3,000 this year? And that’s just the start!
Meal planning is the fastest way to cut back on eating out and to save money on groceries!
3.Stop swiping the plastic!
I sure hope I don’t need to tell you this but if you want to start paying off debt, it’s going to help tremendously if you stop building more and more debt. So just stop it!
It has been statistically proven that shoppers spend less money when they use cash. That has turned out to be 100% true for our family.
Before we switched to cash we thought we had a budget in place but every two weeks we would overdraft our bank account! But after we switched to our cash envelope budget it was like magic! We could stick with it!
Sticking to your budget is going to be paramount when it comes to paying off debt for your family! Using cash is going to help you get there!
What is your biggest challenge when paying off debt?
What seems to be your biggest hurdle to face when it comes to getting rid of your debt? Do you feel like it’s even worth it to be debt free? Let’s chat about it in the comments!
Thanks for stopping in and I’ll talk to you soon! Xoxo
Nobody has the time to do any extreme couponing! But is there still a way to make couponing work with a busy schedule and still save any money? There are a few super simple techniques for couponing for beginners that will help you do exactly that!
I found a way to make couponing quick and still help our family save a chunk of money every month and that’s what I want to teach you today!
Any task that you repeat over and over needs to be batched! Are you repeatedly making sandwiches for lunches over and over again? It’s time to stop! Let me show you how to make a whole lot of lunch freezer sandwiches at one time to help you save a bunch of time in your week!
I was first introduced to the idea of lunch freezer sandwiches from my friend Stephanie from Six Figures Under. She always has the best money and time saving tips!
A lot of money has been moved around in our August family budget! We spent almost $8,000 from our August family budget. The crazy thing is that it doesn’t stress me out at all!
Starting a family budget doesn’t have to be restrictive! Look at it in a way that you are actually telling your money what to do rather than wondering where it went. Then not having enough to pay the bills… Stressful! Continue Reading →