Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Starbucks and Sushi

I tried something new with our grocery money last week. Instead of holding on to receipts or trying to calculate in our heads how much we have spent out of our grocery budget, I tried using cash. What a concept! We already do it with Fun Dollars, guaranteeing that we only spend what we have budgeted for, why not apply it to groceries?

For the most part, it worked. There was one day that I went to Bell's Outlet and bought some mats for the floors. One of our bath mats did not survive the move, and our kitchen was in dire need of a mat in front of the sink. I spent a little over $20.00 on three memory foam floor mats, and congratulated myself for not spending any extra outside our budget.

*sigh* Corey was not a fan of this purchase. Even though I had the best of intentions with not spending extra money, I was mis-allocating our food money. I kind of see why he wasn't thrilled about it. It didn't really give us a true sense of whether or not our grocery system or budget needs to be tweaked. I think we will need several more weeks of observation on this to find a sweet spot.

On one of my "cash and carry" grocery trips last week, something glistening in the fluorescent light of Safeway caught my eye. It felt like one of those dream sequences out of a movie. Everything got foggy, except for that thing I was looking at. Everything else faded away. I was drawn to it. I had to have it. Oh boy....another coffee mug.

See, I have this very intimate relationships with my coffee mugs. I don't like to drink out of just any old mug. Even when I visit my family in Illinois, at each person's house, I go through their stash of mugs until I find one that speaks to me to drink my morning coffee. Up until now, I have been satisfied with the french woman and Eiffel Tower on my coffee mug (a Fun Dollar Purchase from several months ago). We were morning pals, she and I. But this one at the Starbucks in Safeway, was my coffee soul mate.

The asymmetrical design, the metallic hot fudge color, the fact that it holds the magical amount of 12 oz (Miss French only holds 10oz.). I held my breath as I turned the mug over. Expecting a price tag of $20.00, I almost dropped it when I saw it as a clearance item for $5.59!!!

Needless to say, I now have coffee every morning with my soul mate mug. Miss French is great for an afternoon tea, but this new mug is just more satisfying to drink from when it comes to coffee. I so rarely make snap decisions like that with my Fun Dollars, but in my heart of hearts, I knew it to be a good purchase.

Okay, enough gushing. At the end of the week of my grocery experiment, I had $7.00 left over. I also had $15.00 Fun Dollars I was willing to commit to a night out. We all went out for sushi at Szechuan. Since the kids aren't too big on sushi (Carrick pulls the shrimp out of the tempura roll, and Lily eats the left overs) we also ordered garlic green beans. Corey also chipped in with his Fun Dollars.

I will be completely honest, I miscounted what was left over in grocery and Fun Dollars and I thought I had $32.00 total instead of $22.00 total. I found this out before we ordered, counting the cash under the table. I quietly told Corey that we would be dining out with less money than expected. We could have got up and left, since we hadn't ordered yet,  or just ordered one sushi and one entree.

He didn't have to, but he put in his own Fun Dollars so that we could order whatever we wanted (which was only one more sushi roll than what we would have ordered otherwise.) I was especially appreciative of this gesture because I knew he wasn't thrilled with me using the grocery money for a non-grocery purchase earlier that week. Also it had been my idea to eat out in the first place. I guess that's why we are soul mates. We can forgive and acknowledge that the other person isn't perfect.

This was a much more enjoyable trip to Szechuan than the last time. Lily was much more manageable, and Corey didn't have to dash off to an appointment. Now, if you'll excuse me, I need to spend some time with my soul mate.

Coffee Mug at Starbucks- $6.00
Sushi at Szechuann-$15.00

Balance this pay cycle-$16.00

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