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Low-Spend March + Kitty Cancer Update

March 19th, 2013 at 07:08 am

**January seemed off to a shaky start as there was so much fun stuff we couldn't turn down. !! But, traditionally January - April is very low-spend/high earn with the tax season. Always a nice jumpstart to the year.

Anyway, we have definitely shifted to low-spend mode. February is always easy because it is short. March has been exceptional. Our AmEx credit card did not close until the 7th, so already paid some March expenses. But I got the closing date fixed, again. So we can pay more by calendar month. (I moved the close date to the 25th. That means we can pay just prepay charges between the 25th and the last day of the month). As it stands, the balance on our gas/grocery card is $40. Dh is getting both cars oil changed this week and will fill up the van for me today (we have a 50-cent per gallon discount). I believe we can absorb the oil changes and the TV expenses in the gas and grocery budget. To be fair, we buy a lot of groceries at Target as well, but the Target balance is $35, including some outdoor toys for the kids. I can't tell you exactly what it is, but I think a lot of it is the new rewards system at our grocery store. I don't even think we have eaten any of those Indian meals this month. Which would lower our grocery bill even further. But maybe some of that eating last month has made all the rest of our food last longer. WE did splurge on corn beef and cabbage over the weekend. We also bought a take-out pizza Saturday because the kids asked and we hadn't eaten out all month. So, what the heck.

**I did redeem $25 rewards to my credit card (which credited $25 against our spending, and is also why our balance is low). I applied the $25 to our next mortgage payment.

**Dh earned $25 from a phone interview - from the focus group company. This interview will decide if he is eligible for the $250 focus group. No word yet.

**Other than all of the above I haven't spent a cent so no coupons or savings to boast.

**We did get our TV part and the TV seems to be working fine. The test will be if it lasts a month, as there were some complaints of these parts failing fast. So, still crossing our fingers that this is a long-term fix. After a month I will feel better about it.

**I just lump all our pet spending in with the groceries. I have never bothered to separate it out. We will always have to feed our cat, right? So, I expect another nudge down on our expenses with the loss of our cat. I don't think I will adjust our budgeting or savings goals as I felt our savings goals were very aggressive and maybe a bit tight. So, I will leave be for a while. IF we continue with this ever downward trend on groceries, I may re-evaluate. I have always left a big buffer in our gas budget since gas is ever rising. But this also means smart driving choices buys us more wiggle room in the budget. I don't think our groceries (& household spending) have ever been less than $500/month on average, but they might be this year. So, buys us more wiggle room, I suppose. Most likely would redirect some of our cost savings to music lessons, in the long run.

**Kitty kitty kitty. Frown We made *the* appointment for tomorrow. Not sure if we will have the guts to actually go through with it. I think dh is taking this harder than I am. Though he hates cats and she is my baby. Ha! So, tomorrow sucks and today sucks, and I will probably turn off my brain re: finances for a while. This is one of those times that illustrates the why of being fiscally conservative. So, I can turn it off and ignore it during these times. I asked dh if he asked any questions when he made the appointment. (Like cost). He said no. I said, "It's okay - I don't give a flip anyway." That is how it goes. I kind of figure ignorance is bliss. He did not ask anything about anything. I am sure he had trouble just making the appointment - as would I. So, we turn off the finances for a while and focus on life.

My mom said she'd take all our cat food and stuff to the shelter for us. I can face that because it is doing something good, but not sure when I will deal with the rest of it all. One day at a time...

We rescued her from the shelter when she was 2. We had her for about exactly 13 years.

11 Responses to “Low-Spend March + Kitty Cancer Update”

  1. PNW Mom Says:

    My thoughts are with you and your family in regards to your kitty....Our cat is 14 and he too was adopted from a shelter. So sorry Frown

  2. CB in the City Says:

    Putting your cat down when she is in pain and terminal is a loving act. Still very hard to do -- my thoughts are with you.

  3. creditcardfree Says:

    ((Hugs)) I'm so sorry. It is a very tough decision to make, and our pets are such good family.

  4. FrugalTexan75 Says:

    Frown I'm so sorry for your impending loss MM. Frown {{{{hugs}}}}

  5. pretty cheap jewelry Says:

    you know her little soul will be playing in kitty heaven with warm rays of sun to lay in and feathers to chase. even for agnostic aetheist kitties Smile

  6. JulieA Says:

    I'm so sorry about Kitty. Those are always very hard days to face.

  7. Looking Forward Says:

    ((hugs))
    Frown

  8. scfr Says:

    So very, very sorry MM. Frown
    Since this is your first time as the "adult in charge," here are a couple questions you may want to ask yourselves in advance, speaking from the sad voice of experience:
    - Do you and/or your husband want to be in the room during the procedure?
    - Cremation? If yes, private? (Be sure to specify if you want private.)

    As I said before, it will be hard, and you will do fine. You are a good kitty mama.

  9. MonkeyMama Says:

    Well, it's fitting that it is raining buckets here today. (Rain is generally rare - but it just goes with the mood today). It is definitely time, so we will go through with it.

  10. scfr Says:

    Comforting thoughts for all of you coming from Austin ...

  11. dmontngrey Says:

    I'm so sorry to hear about your cat. Frown We went through a very similar situation almost exactly 2 years ago. Cancer and we had to put her down March 21st, the night before my birthday. I haven't been coming here lately and just decided to check it. It was quite the shock to see this entry, especially NOW. It's very much on our minds these days. Our cat was 16 and we'd *only* had her 5 years. The 3 months of round the clock feeding (while we figured out what was wrong) were very traumatic.
    When it's time, it's time. You know.

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