When times get tough, the tough, go shopping! :)

With the help of a very nice woman who sent me a $40, Publix Gift card. And I was so looking forward to going yesterday, but the serpentine belt that runs the car , shredded on my husband yesterday 😦 leaving us without a car overnight.

It was parked in a parking lot three miles from home. The neighbor, took my husband to the parts store last night and thankfully my husband made enough yesterday to purchase the replacement belt.

This morning my husband left on foot to go remedy the car trouble. A few hours later, he called to tell me it was running again.

Whew! I am grateful because my husband IS NOT a mechanic.

My husband was also quick to remind me that it could have been much worse, I had to agree and thanked my lucky stars ( God, actually) that I wasn’t alone in the car or we were not miles from home when it happened.

So any way my husband came home and picked me up and I dropped him back off at the store and went shopping.

It felt so good to get out of the house for awhile.

So what does one buy with the benefit of a ‘gift’ card ?

Steak, seafood, a lovely bottle of wine, beer, cigarettes ? NO!

The first time through the check out line……

I bought chicken thighs, a lb of hamburger, 2 cans of Chunky soup, a large can of raviolis, parmesan cheese, yellow rice, instant mashed potatoes, canned peas, a half a gallon of milk, a package of bologna, a dozen eggs and two cans of cat food.

The second time through the line …

I took advantage of a BOGO, and was able to get a six pack of pepsi, a six pack of mountain dew, a small bag of sugar and a $2.99 Cuban sandwich for my husband’s lunch.

There was .91 cents left on the card when I left the store. 🙂

I am sure we will have to pick up a few things but that will feed us for four days, allowing us to spend the little money we are making on other essentials.

Again, thank you KW. 🙂

By Comparison, a good weekend

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Yes, it was a GOOD weekend.

So far, the final 24-hour Notice to Vacate has not appeared. So my husband goes down to the thrift store every day in hopes of liquidating just a little more of the USED merchandise.

Because we can’t afford to move it or store it for safe keeping. 😦

On Saturday, he sold several lamps (in a lot) for a total of $20. He was also able to sell a used recliner.

Translated, this means that after buying those pesky daily incidentals ( that we used to take for granted ) and putting $10 in the gas tank, he still had $25.00 when he came home Saturday afternoon.

Whooooooohoooooooooooo! I was ecstatic at the prospect of finally being able to do laundry, and I kid you not.

It had been weeks and everything in the house is dirty.

So on Sunday mornning, we loaded up two laundry baskets and headed for the laundromat around the corner from our home.

We filled one of those mega, front loading machines, and did two regular sized loads besides.

And yep that still left several more loads at home to be done but we were grateful that we could do as much as we did.

At the risk of sounding like a whiner face. It sucks not to be able to leave the house, for lack of clean clothes. it had gotten that bad as I have said before.

Most people, can’t imagine… I know I couldn’t before we fell on hard times. But, I think that is part of the problem.

So after we did the laundry, I went back out and was able to buy Sunday’s dinner with what was left.

There was $3.30 left for my husband to start the day with today, which is almost to the penny, where we were last week.

I tell you all this because, this is a vicious cycle of sorts and without help, it’s VERY hard to get out of.

We still have no idea how we are going to get some of the bills paid.

But baby steps, I guess. Today, we have clean laundry.

Have a GREAT Monday!

~ God Bless

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Dinners , the DG way.

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I have been asked many of times over the last year or so why I do my grocery shopping at Dollar General. Well the answer is simple actually and has everything to do with economics.

1) I learned a long time ago that when it comes to pantry items, in particular canned goods, packaged foods, paper goods and so forth, you really can’t do much better price-wise, EVEN if you did have a DISCOUNT Grocery Store near you. In fact, their prices generally run neck and neck and often cheaper than typical grocery stores. Now their cooler items and frozen foods run slightly higher but when you figure in the convenience, and in my case, gas savings. It all balances.

2) There are NO ‘grocery’ stores in my town. The closest are 6- 1/2 miles from my home. In my case, we are literally shopping on a daily basis and the budget is based on how much money we make that day which in the last several weeks, has been almost nothing. It just doesn’t make sense to spend the gas money every day OR every other day, to get to town to shop at a regular grocery store. I am not saying I wouldn’t love to go to town and get me some groceries, but it just isn’t in the cards for us, right now.

Gosh, what I wouldn’t give for some FRESH aparagas that is on sale this week for $1.99 a bundle. Yum!

3) The convenience helps too. DG is right in between work and home and even on the right side of the road for us. No extra running is needed!

Now with those points being made, I leave you with the menu of what we ate for dinner this past week.

The following meal ideas Serves 2-3, realistically.

Monday :
Rigatoni/ flavored up with Cream of Mushroom Soup ( already in the pantry at home )
Don’t knock it, it was actually quite tasty.

Tuesday :

Hot Dogs ( 1.50 )
Van Camps Pork and Beans ( .75)
Off brand Onion Rings, like funyuns ( 1.00 )
Macaroni Salad ( already in the pantry, with a squirt of mayo and a bit of relish from the frig)

Wednesday :

1 can of Dinty Moore Beef Stew ( 2.50)
1 can of green beans ( .99 )
1 can of tomato soup( already in the pantry at home )
Served on Mashed Potatos ( they have a brand that doesn’t require milk or butter for prep ( .99)

Thursday :

Hamburgers on white toast ( ! lb of hamburger from frozen section ) ( 3.75)
Mashed potatoes (.99)
Beets ( already in the pantry at home )

Please understand that I realize and as well you should realize that FRESH and WHOLE foods are always BEST for your family’s optimum health and nutrition needs. However, given our circumstances, this is the best we can do presently.

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Feed one person on $7.50 for 5 days . In the US?

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LIVE BELOW the LINE is an incredible new awareness and fundraising campaign that’s making a huge difference in the fight against extreme poverty

Feed one person on just $7.50 for a five day period. That’s $1.50 a day, in the US.

Actually it’s food and drink.

Interesting Challenge, right?

Intiially I thought, this would be be a piece of cake, until I read the rules and started doing the math.

Please Note: Everything you use to prepare any meal such as milk, butter, margarine, salt, pepper, seasonings or condiments must be figured in to the equation. NO CHEATING!

So here’s my shopping list for
the challenge ( One Person)

Oatmeal (the old fashioned kind)
Loaf of the cheapest bread I could find
RameN Noodles ( 5 pack )
1 dozen eggs
Bologna

(With any luck, I might be able
eek out a can of condensed milk
and maybe mixed vegetables. )

The hardest thing for me I think
is I couldn’t afford to buy coffee.

So what would you buy?