Thursday, May 14, 2009

Update on $10 spending

After my budget update on Monday I had a few readers ask me how I’d live off $10 a week.

I’ll admit when I started I was scared – I figured I’d starve by the end of the week and go through serious fast food withdraws. Yet, amazingly I’m still alive, but I won’t lie and say it has been easy. I have/had experienced some serious withdraws during my fast food detox (and yes I consider fast food a drug like substance). On Tuesday and Wednesday I normally work from 10am until 10pm so I need to eat two meals at work, a work which doesn’t have a refrigerator, which can make it especially hard. How do I keep a frozen dinner frozen for at least 8 hours? You can’t no matter how many ice packs you have.

Normally I’d get together with a co-worker and eat out. We generally go to Subway because it’s healthier and only $5.30. Two weeks ago I would have thought that a steal, but our new $10 challenge has given me a new prospective. If I eat Subway twice a week I’ll be in the red $.60 and that doesn’t include cookies or a drink. If I pack my lunch the food cost less than $2 a day off our grocery budget and none from my $10 limit for the week. It’s easier to look at a sub differently when it’s going to cost more than 50% of your available funds. Although I am sure I dreamed about subs at least three nights last week.

There are also other affects I’m of carring money on me I don’t want to spent it. Last week I wanted to buy a pop but I couldn’t bring myself to break my $10 bill for a pop. I mean I’d done so well all week why waste it on a pop right? I’m not bringing water from home. I did break down on Thursday and spend $2 on a hot chocolate and donut, sometimes after working 2 – 12 hour shifts and then starting your next one at 7:30 am you just need a donut.

So over all it’s going very well and working for both Matt and I. We haven’t been to the ATM once. I’ll take my extra money and roll it each week. Overall the experts are right using cash makes you consider every purchase.

Oh and I’ve lost about two pounds as well – always a perk.