Spending Diary-So much food


I had redeemed a $100 gift card for Sam’s Club from Swagbucks and planned my trip strategically. I got enough meat for 8 different meals, plus dog food and cat litter. My total came to $96 and change.

Then I went to Aldi and spent $33.62 on the rest of the food items we needed this week, and some shredded gouda which we didn’t need but I wanted.

I redeemed a coupon from PetSmart for a free bag of dog food, up to 6 pounds. I’m still getting a hang of how much to budget for dog food, and it doesn’t help that Little Bit goes through phases of what he will and won’t eat.

I cooked a delicious lunch that used up a lot of food from the fridge- a cabbage/potato/bell pepper/chicken sausage hash. I used a bag of “asian” salad mix that I bought the previous weekend for the greens, mozzarella and garlic chicken sausage and bell peppers that I bought from Sam’s that morning, potatoes that were on their final days and topped it with the shredded gouda. DELICIOUS! It made about 5 servings, so enough for leftovers but not so much we’d get sick of it.

Then we took the doggos for a hike by the lake. Fact: we don’t have adventure dogs. Second fact: Our dogs are too dumb to know to drink water when they’re hot. But we spent a good hour and a half outdoors, watching the boats and walking around. The doggos slept hard that night!



Sunday I cooked my little heart out. I wanted to use up a ton of food we had that was going to go bad soon. I made:

  • Tuna with hummus instead of mayo
  • My mom’s potato salad (from memory)
  • Pulled pork (okay, that one Mr. Beach Life made)
  • Caramelized onions
  • Fruit salad
  • Fruit crisp


I was able to use up a lot of odds and ends. And made way too much potato salad (there’s not such thing.)

I spent $25.63 but will be reimbursed for $14 for a mystery shop.

Booked 1 mystery shop for $5.


Little Bit was really restless and having stomach issues. I bought him some pumpkin and brown rice to help him go to the bathroom. He wanted nothing to do with it, threw up during the night, and then slept in my arm. Since we got him in July he has only ever slept on his chair. I smiled myself to sleep cuddling with that little dude.

I spent $33 on a mystery shop, but will only be reimbursed $5.  However, I got some nice towels we needed for the Airbnb space so it worked out. I will take that money out of the Airbnb account since it was a needed expense.

I booked  a mystery shop for $15.


I originally planned salads for dinner but that didn’t seem like a crowd pleaser. After some back and forth with Mr. Beach Life we decided on Instapot chicken with shwarma marinade, french fries and a side salad. It was DELICIOUS. Like, seriously so good.

Even though we had chicken in the freezer, we bought unfrozen chicken from the store. And kid needed some things for their lunch. So I spent $22.43 at the grocery.

I booked two web shops and  1 phone shop for $10 total.



I made the mistake of trying to come up with a budget for next month and it depressed me.

Next month is Thanksgiving, my best friend will visit our capital city for work and Mr. BL and I are going on a mystery shop for a major sports team in our capital city. That means the gas budget needs to be increased as well as the grocery budget. Plus property taxes will be due the following month and I am very stressed about that.

So I went on a bender trying to find mystery shops. I signed up for 4 phone shops for $15.

I spent $50 from next month’s budget on a Petco card for the Swagbucks Swago promotion. It wasn’t really money I needed to spend at the momeny (so that means I shouldn’t have) but I will definitely use Petco again and with 4 animals I will need to buy food or litter sooner rather than later.

Then, I made nachos with food we had in the cupboards and ate so much that it made me sick. It was a great night.



I created a pop up library for an event on campus. The event went from 11-2:30 so I knew I would not have time for my regular lunch. In the end I brought a hearty breakfast (the last of the potato/cabbage hash we made on Saturday) and ate it as late as I could, then brought fruit and fig bars and a V8 for lunch. Well, the coordinators bought us all pizza and that was such a great surprise!

The pop up library was successful even though no one checked anything out.  The Dean of the school was impressed, but I noticed that my boss took all the credit even though I did all the work. Eh, I guess that is part of my job-making him look great.

Here is the spending so far:

I’ve adjusted a few categories, so that should account for inconsistencies. I am definitely going to go over groceries by the end of the month, but I have 3 grocery mystery shops this weekend so it won’t be too bad. Still, so much room for improvement.

  1. the Budget Epicurean

    Wow you are amazingly close in almost all categories, I’m super impressed! Our bills like electric fluctuate too much to estimate close enough. And I wish I could shop Sam’s with you, sounds like you’ve got that down to a science!

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