No spend September, we’re not going to make it

Ah no spend September, I was so sure staying in our $400 budget would be easier than easy! I mean if worse came to worse we have beans and rice. But my putting up got the best of me, and probably it was canning that is going to send us over the edge. Actually the purchase that will put us over the edge is dance shoes. And yes, we did spend $50 on a dance outfit (required by the school) earlier this month. But I thought her shoes had a little more room. They had room, ending with Tuesday dancing one lesson in tights only. Ok, ok, can’t put it off, so we’ll be picking up shoes this week. Darn it! Because we’re already at $396.38. Since the last update we’ve bought:
Tomatoes: $50
Produce: $6.66
Jars and lids: $43.61
More groceries related to canning (pectin, etc.): $17.02
A new gauge for my aunt’s pressure canner: $23.50
Ribs and salami: $37.68
Total week three: $178.47
I do sort of want to stamp a big fat FAIL on this week. But I won’t. I won’t do it because I still was super careful about what I spent. It may not seem like it, but let’s walk down the list. The tomatoes, produce, jars, lids and other produce related to canning. I put up a lot, lot of great stuff. I made pizza sauce, Italian sauce, grape jelly, and more. For sure I spent way less than these canned goods would cost me in the store. And besides the lids most of the $43.61 is jars that I will use year after year. I was a little down on myself for replacing my aunt’s gauge, when I didn’t end up using the pressure canner (I made chicken stock and the four pints I got didn’t warrant heating the thing up, so I just froze them). But then I thought how nice it was of her to lend it to me. I went and had it checked and the old one was off by more than two pounds of pressure. I would feel terrible if I gave the canner back to my aunt and something happened. So I’m glad I fixed it in the end. Really the meat was the one thing we didn’t need. Our awesome neighbors across the street had a mega smoker built. They told us they were going to fire it up last weekend and asked if we wanted to put meat in it. We couldn’t say no. We cooked three racks and Bj took the meat off of some of the bones so I could freeze it for another meal or two. We invited my brother and his fiancé over and made a party of it. Worth every penny. Tuesday basically lives on salami and since Bj was at Costco he picked some up.
I’d like to think of this list in terms of things we did NOT buy. No clothes, no toys, no books. No processed foods. No fast food, no eating out. All good, good things!

A picture that sums up this experiment pretty nicely; Tuesday helping with bread dough….

Oops mama forgot how much the dough was going to rise!

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  1. Don’t call it a fail! think of the positives! And do your best to stick it out through the last week 🙂
    Did you make bread from the 5 minutes a day book? I need to choose a container to store mine in, and make space in the fridge, then I’m going to mix up a batch–hopefully tonight! 🙂

  2. Oh my gosh, I am impressed that you came so close when you were doing so much good canning! Sounds like it was a good experiment and if you did it a different month when there wasn’t so much canning to be done you’d have made it easily.

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