Thursday, December 25, 2014

Not A Creature Was Stirring...

Merry Christmas from the Witch and all her crew!

Friday, January 3, 2014

First Grocery Shopping of 2014

Okay, here it is, our first grocery shopping of the new year. And we did it on the coldest day that I can remember. It was -26 C (about -15 F for those of you who might be metrically challenged) according to the readout in the truck but it was at least nice and sunny. It almost seems pleasant now because it is storming outside again today. The wind and snow are bad enough that they have sent everyone home from work. Good thing I'm still on holidays! I’m just hoping the electricity stays on.

The first groceries of 2014.
The first groceries of 2014.
It was nice that I got to go shopping, though. Usually, Hubby does the shopping by himself after work so that we can avoid having to go on the weekend. I love reading labels and squeezing produce but he really gets grumpy if we have to fight the crowds to check out. So we had a nice afternoon at the Superstore and I got some healthy ingredients for my new diet. Have a look at that picture, not a single bit of junk except for the oven fries and the cheese slices and those are all Hubby's! The cheese slices were on sale, $3.00 instead of $6.99 so it was a great time to stock up. I don’t use them very much but Hubby has them in sandwiches all the time.

The veggies are always a staple in our house but I purchased more because of the new diet.  The pantry, as you can see, is full of temptation from Hubby’s well wishers this Christmas. I think they are trying to kill us with kindness. These I will have to remove from my view because there is so many good chocolates calling my name. They will make excellent Games Night prizes.

The Temptation: a pantry full of chocolate!
The Temptation

After the madness of the Christmas spending spree we're back to budgeting. I'm serious about paying of our mortgage this year. We figure that if we can put down $5000 against the principal this year, we can be done by November. This sounds more than doable. We have both cashed out our banked overtime (hundreds of hours each) and will use that, with some savings, to fund this year's RRSP contribution. The tax rebate will be used to pay down the mortgage.

The Bill

Grocery bill: The Total
The Total
With that in mind, I spent some time earlier looking for a way to track our spending. I found a good spreadsheet on Sqawkfox's site to analyze my monthly and annual spending and Hubby made one using mostly her categories to track daily spending. Now I just need to be diligent in filling in what we spend everyday. Retirement is still on the near horizon and I have to know how much we'll need to survive.
Hubby's Daily Expense Form
Daily Expense Form

So, the diet starts on January 6. That's when I return to work. Unless I win the lottery, then I’ll just jump for joy and book a flight somewhere warm and toasty. Of course I’ll have to buy a new bathing suit. No, forget the suits, we’ll go to a private beach where no suits are required. Oh to dream as it’s storming outside and everything is closed. Hope you are all safe and sound and your vehicle starts.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Did Granny New Year find you?

Happy New Year All,

Did Granny New Year find you?

I’m hoping everyone’s New Year will be off to a great start.

There is always promise, hope and of course, new year's resolution to be had. I don’t usually go for this sort of thing because I know it’s just a huge letdown when I break my promises to myself. Which is why I mostly don't announce them to the world.

Anyway, this year I’ve decided to post a few.
  1. Have the mortgage paid off by the end of this year.
  2. Find a forever fur friend pet. Yup the witch has been looking for a small dog or fun loving cat or even a bunny who needs a good home.
  3. Lose some weight and eat even more healthier than we do. Sorry Hubby I’ve found lots of great tasting veggie recipes with kale. Plus walking a dog will help, right!!!
  4. Buy a set of snow shoes so we can enjoy the outdoors more in the Winter.
  5. Paint the upstairs bathroom and add a new mirror and shelf. Oh Hubby I have some plans for you. Don’t worry this will be easy compared to the Gazebo you built us.
  6. Finally buy a generator.
  7. Host a murder mystery party
  8. New lamps for computer room and down stairs.
  9. Try to do acts of kindness more often so I can watch the recipient's reactions. I find they cheer me up more just giving them anonymously .
  10. The last one I won’t be sharing with anyone but myself because it is the hardest and most personal decision I will be making. I don’t need the added pressure of having printed it out if I fail.
So there you have it the goals and challenges for 2014.

Thanks for all who still hung around during my absence. That’s what great blogger friends do. (Canadian Saver, I miss you!)

I’ll leave you with a few pictures of my beautiful Amaryllis


Amaryllis Closeup

Amaryllis Again