Monday, November 7, 2011

Money Monday: Adding Up

Saturday Hubby was away at the state cross-country meet, the teens were at the church youth retreat, Princess Sassy and Prince Steadfast had a busy day planned, so it was just me, Princess Eager, and Prince CuddleBunny.  We were looking for fun and adventure, so volunteered to take some furniture, instruments, and other belongings to Prince Stoic in the Big City.  He'd moved, and a mother should see where her son lives!  It was a favor to him and an outing for us.  (Also a favor to us, as our entry is now free of 5 guitars and a bass drum.)

When we got home the newlyweds were free to join us.  They picked up some Chinese take-out, but meats only, so we augmented with quinoa and veggies we cooked at home.  (This is our usual practice so that the treat of a Chinese food dinner is more economical, and healthier.)  We rented a couple of movies to make an evening of it.

The crackers: Ryvita Fruit and Seed
Crunch Crispbreads
Sunday afternoon Hubby and I went to visit his infirm mom at the care center, where she's lived for the last two years.  It was tough and emotional, and we took a little time afterward for ourselves.  We picked up some crackers and cheese at a supermarket, and drove through a park, and stopped to see one of his friends.  
On the way home, I called to discuss dinner prep, but the kids were already fixing their own choices of leftovers, so Hubby and I seized the rare opportunity to stay out a bit longer.  We decided to finally use the restaurant gift card that had been riding around in Hubby's pocket for a couple of years.

I'm always surprised to see how "cheap weekend fun" can add up so fast, and put a speed bump in the squeaky-tight budget of this large family.  Darn-it.  At another point in our lives, I could've said we made pretty good choices to keep expenses to a minimum while the family enjoyed a great time for the money.  Now, though, maybe I have to cut some of this type of activity out of our available options...

Saturday, daytime:
Eastbound ferry, car & driver (passengers ride free in this direction):  $10  
Sandwiches for 4 at the Prince's favorite place, Paseo's:  $27 
"Necessary-whenever-in-the-neighborhood" Mighty-O Donuts (1 dozen + 2 fritters):  $20   
Westbound ferry, car & driver, plus 2 youth passengers:  $19
Time with Prince Stoic in the sunny city:  Priceless 
View from the ferry.
We made it to the dock for both trips with rare, PERFECT timing.

Saturday evening:
Chinese takeout (meat only):  $6 
2 movies from Red Box:  $2
Family evening together, eating & laughing:  Priceless, again 

Sunday with Hubby:
Crackers & cheese:  $7 
Dinner at Applebee's, less the gift card:  $22
Couple time and visiting Mom-in-law:  To repeat myself... Priceless 


To make things a little better, some of these things served double duty:
  • 1/2 my Saturday sandwich was Hubby's lunch on Sunday   
  • The majority of the doughnuts were used for breakfasts and lunches on Sunday --They're made from scratch of organic ingredients.  Does that help? ;-)  
  • We had 1/3 of our Saturday dinner left for others to enjoy as leftovers  (approx 2 or 3 servings) 
  • We brought home 1/2 the crackers and cheese (A healthy snack for another time)
  • 1/2 of my Sunday dinner will be Monday's lunch

  • Prince Stoic's things had to get to his new house sometime, somehow... So he or we would've had to bear that travel expense
  • We would've had some expense for each meal, anyway, so not all of what we spent was 'extra' 
So, how to figure out the actual over-expenditure of this weekend?  I'm really not sure.  The doughnuts and the dinner out probably could have been replaced for pennies on the dollar, in comparison to what we would've eaten without buying those.  The Chinese take-out was about twice the amount of using our own chicken, and the movies were not exactly a life's necessity.  
So, my best guess?...                                                                                                                                                                                                    
Over-expenditure: $50                                                                                                                                                                                        
It still could've been a pretty good weekend without those excesses.  $50 saved here and there could be very significant.  It's not like I have weekends like this very often, though... So we'll discuss other ways we're trying to cut from our current, more seemingly mundane expenses next week.

 An extra note, just as an FYI: Ryvita Fruit and Seed Crunch Crispbreads are a hard-to-find favorite of mine... Great with Cream cheese.  Hubby said we should try to find where to get a case of them, and I just discovered that Amazon has 10-packs. 

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