It is so damn cold here lately. 29 degrees when we went to bed. 31 right now (10:30am PST). Sunny though.
Dry skin weather.
Since Wayne's second job ended, we have really been trying to make cut backs where we won't feel them.
The first thing we did was switch our grocery store from Safeway and Fred Meyer to Winco, which saves us a ton of money in groceries every month. We have saved, I swear, over $100/month in groceries by shopping at Winco. Amazing. I was so reluctant to try Winco-- mostly because I like my produce to look pretty. Winco pretty much loads the produce off the truck, opens the boxes and put the boxes on the shelves. You have to dig around a little more for the good stuff.
I've heard their ground beef is yucky, but we eat ground turkey, which has been fine so far. If we need ground beef, we'll get it at Fred Meyer.
I do miss pretty produce, though. Maya had a field trip to the Spanaway Albertson's Monday, and it was a great grocery store field trip. I was drooling over all the pretty produce, the great lighting throughout the store and the attractive layout. Winco is like a warehouse. So not attractive.
But I'll take money in my pocket over a pretty store any day.
We also canceled our DISHNetwork. We had the mega package with the HD channels. We were paying $100/mo. for TV!!! Gross!! We did a combined package with our phone/internet provider, which is a local company (not Comcast). We are saving $50/mo by making that change.
I've been thinking about whether we could cut all the way back to basic cable. We still have the HD package because we have these expensive HD TVs, so we feel compelled to subscribe to the HD channels. There was a time when we didn't even have cable. For years we didn't have cable. Then we moved up to basic cable, which was fine. It's so much easier to upgrade than it is to downgrade, I tell you. Easier on the psyche, I mean. It killed me to get rid of DISH and all the wonderful HD channels to get three HD channels that are offered through our current provider.
Today I canceled our XM radio subscriptions. Yes, we were paying two hundred and some odd dollars a year for nearly three years to listen to radio. That's not a hell of a lot when you break it down by the month, but we need every penny. That money could be a pair of shoes for one of the kids. Or a haircut. Gas money. Contacts. So many options.
Well, when I canceled our XM, they gave us three months for free. Bastages trying to keep me addicted. We're hoping that in three months we can get the money together to pay for our two XM radios. As bummed as I was about downgrading the cable, I did cry over losing XM. I listen to XM exclusively. Maya got in the car the other day and asked to listen to Radio Disney, and I had to tell her that we didn't have it anymore. She had a complete meltdown. It sucks. She doesn't remember when we were always so damn broke because she wasn't born yet, so these cutbacks have made her less than happy. She also cried when we changed our cable.
The thing that sucks is that Wayne makes a waaay above average income, but I still feel like we are always struggling as the next payday approaches. Cars, insurance and gas/electric kill us. The mortgage is do-able. Credit debt is there but manageable (one credit card and two student loans).
I think we'll be okay, and we're trying to avoid either Wayne getting another job or me getting a job, though the idea of working is kind of exciting. I'm just super picky. I want a mindless job that is 20 or less hours/week, and the hours must be 9ish to 1ish. No weekends. Potential employers could be really turned off by my very specific needs, I'm pretty sure.
Work...I'm putting off my January class. I don't mean to, but week after week goes by, and I'm still unprepared. I have bumped it to February, which means it won't end until the end of April, which means my next series won't end until the end of July. Ugh.
I'm in my wintertime lull; my impossible-to-get-motivated mode. I hate this time of the year, but it happens every year like clockwork. It's annoying.