Tuesday, February 19, 2008

February Update

Well folks, the winter is wearing on, and I'm already getting psyched up for the beginnings of spring! For one thing, crazy amount of rain have softened the ground and melted a lot of the snow. Just having things unfrozen and smelling like the earth is invigorating and exciting to me. I've started to see some greenish looking grass and thinking to myself; "has that been green all winter? Is it turning green now? Could spring be coming??" This weekend I went to Home Depot and bought a seed starting kit. I'm planning on having a REAL garden this summer (whoohoo! no more pots!). Yesterday I planted some herbs, tomatoes and peppers in the starter kit. I will take some pics when they sprout. :) Until then, I go over and stare at it even though I know they all take 7-10 days to sprout. I'm excited to say the least! I know it will snow more before it's all over- but looking ahead to warm weather just makes me happy.

Another thing I've been thinking a lot about is how to be thrifty with money. It hit me a few weeks ago while looking at our finances that having a mortgage with significantly more $$$ than our rental makes an impact on the budget. All of a sudden the fun things (like traveling) become harder to do, more planning has to be done beforehand. Saving? Before we leave? What's that? So after freaking out and saying 'holy crap we won't be able to travel my life is oooooover', I decided to figure out how we can be thrifty and save more money to travel and keep fixing up the house. We've been spending tons on groceries lately. Part of this has been because we've been eating out less (a good thing!), but I still think it was beginning to get a little excessive. I love shopping at Hannaford (so quiet, peaceful, the food is good....) so I went online to www.hannaford.com and found out they have their circular online and that I can actually make a shopping list using it and print it out from there. I know some of you probably think this is the most boring thing ever, but I was really psyched up about it. :) Since using the circular and actually looking at prices (what a concept!), I have managed to save us around 30$ a week on groceries. I have had to plan out more than usual, but it's totally worth it! I'll keep you updated if I find other ways that we can save (besides just depriving ourselves of everything fun hahaha).

I'll update you on the quilt making that I'm doing. I have not started sewing it yet because of procrastination. I do have my mom's sewing machine at home all plugged in and ready to go, I just need to finish cutting those darn pieces! Michelle and I are going to try to spur each other on to finish them- hopefully by next update I will say something like "Oh I've sewed half the quilt together!" My goal is to finish by the end of May.

Winter in the Haven household has gone pretty well. I have not been too depressed or anything which is awesome. John took me to Northampton MA this past weekend for Valentine's Day weekend. We stayed at the historic Northampton Hotel in town and walked to some of our favorite spots. First we went to one of my all time favorite bars, The Tunnel Bar. It's this classy, dark, bar in a renovated railway tunnel. There are lots of cushy leather arm chairs and low tables. It's not a 'give me a bud' type of bar to say the least. :) If anyone is ever in Northampton, I highly recommend it! We went and had dinner at the Eastside Grill, also a great establishment. On Saturday we went window shopping in town and then headed over to Amherst to hang out. We went to the ABC for lunch (no beer though), and then read our books at Starbucks across the street (RAO's was too crowded!). I love pretending I'm in college again, it's just great. I think I would retire in Amherst if I could. maybe....

That's all for now folks!


John said...

Fun deprivation is a great way to save money!

Dan said...

Kimberly and I started a vacation budget last year, putting away a set amount of money with each and every pay check, and it has worked out very well.

We have a Paypal account for buying and selling on eBay, so we just set up a transfer from our bank account to the Paypal account. It has a really good interest rate, and it's separate and out of sight from our other finances, so the money just grows.

sara said...

GARDEN! thats so exciting. as for saving money... become a vegetarian - meat is expensive. eat lots of rice. and uhhhh buy highlife instead of nicer beer. that is all i got.

that and thriftstore shop.
good luck

ps. you can also travel by couch surfing

Laura :) said...

Oh my gosh Sara, I TOTALLY just had a conversation with someone about couch surfing. He wanted to do it, but she was freaked out by the idea. have you actually done it before?

Danielle A. said...

I know exactly what you mean about the grocery store - things like that excite me too! Another thing that helps me when I do the grocery shopping is that I set up the menu for the week beforehand. Then I write out my list of only what we need - and I ALWAYS make sure I eat something before I leave too. I find I get more in a mood of "Oh! That's interesting! I'll buy it!" if I'm on an empty stomach.

I'm excited for your garden too. Awesome!! :)

dave said...

Hey Laura! I didn't know you had a blog these days. I made it back to Auburn fine yesterday and made $400 in delta tickets and a free voucher for a meal at Logan. The flight I was on @ 8:15 was wayy overbooked, and they wanted volunteers to wait for the next atlanta flight at 1021. I had an extremely flexible time table, so I volunteered and got $400 towards a delta ticket and used my food voucher to get a giant coffee and muffin and water and Dunkin Donuts. AWESOME!

ps- you can import your blog onto your facebook NOTES section by using your blog url in the Import feature on facebook. Pretty cool.