A Used Guitar And Different April 2023 Bills

Littlewoods studying one thing new: composting after cleansing the rooster coop!

My husband and I are dedicated to studying new issues. It’s a objective of ours to constantly make ourselves newcomers in several capacities. Placing ourselves in a newbie mindset permits us to maintain our brains limber, opens us as much as creativity and new experiences, retains us humble and fashions lifelong studying for our youngsters.

It has been the catalyst for a lot of conversations with our ladies across the info that you simply don’t get issues proper the primary time, you must work laborious and be persistent and that it’s okay to make errors. Additionally, that you simply’re by no means too outdated to study one thing new!

Previously few years, we’ve discovered easy methods to:

  • Downhill ski
  • Use a chainsaw
  • Paddle board
  • Develop and protect vegetables and fruit
  • Increase chickens
  • Drive the tractor, plow the driveway, fell and skid timber for firewood and way more (this being Nate, not me)
  • Sing solos at church (me)
  • Do a ton of house and farm repairs, upkeep and upgrades (Nate)

And now, Nate has determined to discover ways to play the guitar! He obtained a used guitar from Craigslist for $100 and is taking free on-line courses. He practices daily and he’s sounding fairly good.

For my new factor, I’m slowly studying French on the free Duolingo app. To not brag, however, if I ever–and I imply EVER–see a cat consuming a croissant, I KNOW HOW TO TELL YOU ABOUT IT IN FRENCH. Undecided why this was one of many first classes, however I’m going with it.


Easter rooster

We celebrated Easter in superb frugal style with:

  • Hand-me-down Easter attire for the ladies and a thrift retailer gown for me
  • Storage sale-sourced Easter basket objects
  • Re-used plastic eggs and decorations from earlier years
  • Home made pizza for our Easter dinner feast (the ladies voted for pizza over ham, which is what we had final 12 months)
  • An egg hunt, a go to to the Easter Bunny and egg adorning at our city Easter Celebration
  • And naturally, singing within the choir at church!

A New Toothbrush!

My ten-year-old Sonicare toothbrush lastly surrendered. It died valiantly and after serving me ably for lo these a few years. The upside is that my new toothbrush is PINK (affiliate hyperlink)! Additionally it really works quite a bit higher… know-how, I inform ya. We’re a loyal Sonicare electrical brush household and–knock on wooden–none of us has had a cavity since we began utilizing them. There are issues I’m prepared to pay extra for and wholesome tooth are decidedly considered one of them.

Potting Soil + Seeds

Littlewoods and me beginning our backyard seeds!

The ladies and I began our backyard seeds in April! They determined to every begin their very own flat of seeds to plant of their very personal backyard rows. I began a bunch extra simply in case! We used saved seeds from earlier years and I purchased some new issues I need to do that 12 months, together with: GIANT sunflowers, an ornamental squash/gourd combine and a distinct form of pickling cucumber.

Along with her vegetable seeds, Kidwoods elected to begin her personal flower backyard, so we obtained her a wildflower combined seed packet, which she planted all on her personal.

Right here’s what we’re (hopefully) rising this summer time:

I really like how far the ladies have come of their gardening capabilities. I’ve had them by my facet for yearly of gardening and it’s pretty to see them taking possession of their very own rows and plots. It’s additionally pretty that they’re not pulling my vegetable vegetation out by the roots. Ahh, reminiscences.

Gear Public sale Previews = Glorious Free Leisure

Mr. FW and Kidwoods on the tools public sale free preview!

Neglect Contact-A-Truck, visiting a big tools public sale’s free preview is GOLDEN kids’s leisure. That is the second 12 months in a row we’ve made some extent of strolling the native public sale area crammed with historical tractors, faculty buses, bulldozers, steamrollers, back-hoes and stuff I don’t even know the title of. The ladies love sitting within the cabs pretending to drive and Littlewoods declared that she needs to be a back-hoe operator when she grows up.

E-book a Monetary Seek the advice of With Me!

Cash is terrifying for lots of people and many people don’t know the place to begin.

That’s the place I are available.

I demystify private finance and break it down into manageable steps. I clarify the place to begin, the place to go and easy methods to confidently handle your cash by yourself.

My session classes–and ensuing written monetary plans–are complete, holistic, and all-encompassing of every particular person’s funds. I take a look at earnings, money owed, property, mortgages, bills, investments, retirement accounts, anticipated social safety, bank card technique and extra. I run via each facet of an individual’s monetary life alongside their longterm targets and aspirations.

I assist folks determine easy methods to make their cash allow them to reside the life they need.

Need assistance together with your cash?

  1. Rent me for a personal monetary session right here.
  2. Schedule an hourlong name with me right here.
  3. Schedule a 30 minute name with me right here.

→Undecided which possibility is best for you? Schedule a free 15-minute chat with me to study extra. Refer a pal to me right here.

I Love the Free Cash Monitoring Instruments from Private Capital… now referred to as Empower!

I take advantage of and advocate a free on-line service referred to as Empower to prepare our cash. It tracks our spending, internet value, investments, retirement, every thing. Whereas the title is completely different, the free internet value monitoring and cash group instruments are the identical!

Figuring out the place your cash’s at is without doubt one of the best methods to get a deal with in your funds. You can’t make knowledgeable selections about your cash in the event you don’t understand how you’re spending it or how a lot you’ve. For those who’d wish to know extra about how Empower works, take a look at my full write-up.

With no holistic image of your funds, there’s no strategy to set financial savings, debt compensation or funding targets. It’s a should, people. Empower (which is free) is an effective way for me to systematize our monetary overviews because it hyperlinks all of our accounts collectively and gives a complete image of our internet value.

For those who don’t have a stable thought of the place your cash’s at–or the way you’re spending it–take into account attempting Empower (notice: the Empower hyperlinks are affiliate hyperlinks). 

Credit Playing cards: How We Purchase Every part

We purchase every thing we will with bank cards as a result of:

  1. Littlewoods rigorously planting her veggie seeds

    It’s simpler to trace bills. No guesswork over the place a random $20 invoice went; all of it exhibits up in our month-to-month expense report from Empower. I additionally spend much less cash as a result of I KNOW I’m going to see each expense listed on the finish of the month.

  2. We get rewards. Bank card rewards are a easy strategy to get one thing for nothing. Via the playing cards we use, we get money again in addition to resort and airline factors for purchasing stuff we had been going to purchase anyway.
  3. We construct our credit score. Since we don’t have any debt, having a number of bank cards open for a few years helps our credit score scores. It’s a unclean fantasy that carrying a stability in your bank card helps your credit score rating–IT DOES NOT. Paying your playing cards off IN FULL each month and protecting them open for a few years does assist your rating.

For extra on my bank card technique, take a look at:

Money Again Playing cards to Take into account

For those who’re now cash-back curious, there are a variety of playing cards in the marketplace providing fairly good money again percentages. Listed below are a couple of I believe are a very good deal:

Kidwoods mountain climbing with me: she was thrilled we discovered this stream!

Blue Money Most popular® Card from American Specific

  • 6% money again at U.S. supermarkets on as much as $6,000 per 12 months in purchases (then 1%).
    6% money again on choose U.S. streaming subscriptions.
  • 3% money again at U.S. fuel stations and on transit (together with taxis/rideshare, parking, tolls, trains, buses and extra).
  • 1% money again on different purchases.
  • Earn a $250 assertion credit score after you spend $3,000 in purchases in your new Card throughout the first 6 months
  • $0 intro annual charge for the primary 12 months, then $95. Charges and costs particulars right here.
  • Phrases apply

Blue Money On a regular basis® Card from American Specific

  • 3% money again at U.S. supermarkets (on as much as $6,000 per 12 months in purchases, then 1%).
  • 3% Money Again at U.S. fuel stations, on as much as $6,000 per 12 months, then 1%.
  • 1% money again on different purchases.
  • Earn as much as $250 – Right here’s How: Earn as much as $150 again while you store with PayPal. Earn 20% again as a press release credit score on purchases while you use your new Card to take a look at with PayPal at retailers within the first 6 months of Card Membership, as much as $150 again. Plus, earn $100 again as a press release credit score after you spend $2,000 in purchases in your new Card within the first 6 months of Card Membership.
  • No annual charge. Charges and costs particulars right here.
  • Phrases apply.

Capital One Quicksilver Money Rewards Credit score Card

  • 1.5% money again on each buy, daily.
  • $200 money bonus after you spend $500 on purchases inside 3 months from account opening.
  • No annual charge.

Capital One SavorOne Money Rewards Credit score Card

  • Littlewoods doing mud season proper

    Limitless 3% money again on eating, leisure, common streaming providers and at grocery shops (excluding superstores like Walmart and Goal).

  • 1% again on all different purchases.
  • 8% money again on tickets at Vivid Seats via January 2023.
  • $200 money bonus after you spend $500 on purchases throughout the first 3 months from account opening.
  • No annual charge.

Chase Freedom Limitless®

  • Earn an additional 1.5% on every thing you purchase (on as much as $20,000 spent within the first 12 months), which is value as much as $300 money again:
    • 6.5% on journey bought via Chase Final Rewards
    • 4.5% on eating and drugstores
    • 3% on all different purchases.
  • After your first 12 months (or $20,000 spent), you earn:
    • 5% money again on Chase journey bought via Chase Final Rewards
    • 3% money again on drugstore purchases and eating at eating places, together with takeout and eligible supply service
    • Limitless 1.5% money again on all different purchases.
  • No annual charge.

For those who’re fascinated about journey rewardsfolks love the Chase Sapphire Most popular® Card. You can earn 60,000 bonus factors after you spend $4,000 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening, which is $750 while you redeem via Chase Final Rewards.

Big caveat to bank card utilization: you MUST pay your bank card payments in full each single month, with no exceptions. For those who’re involved about your potential to do that, or suppose utilizing bank cards would possibly immediate you to spend extra, keep on with a debit card or money. However you probably have no drawback paying that invoice in full each month? I like to recommend you bank card away, my pal! (notice: the bank card hyperlinks are affiliate hyperlinks).

Money Again Earned This Month: $57.17

The ladies diligently misting their freshly planted seeds

The silver lining to our spending is our money again bank card. We earn 2% money again on each buy made with our Constancy Rewards Visa and, this month, we spent $2,858.60 on that card, which netted us $57.17.

Not some huge cash, but it surely’s cash we earned for purchasing stuff we had been going to purchase anyway! This is the reason I really like money again bank card rewards–they’re the best strategy to earn one thing for nothing.

To see how this provides up over the course of a 12 months, examine out How I Made $712.59 With My Money Again Credit score Card.

The place’s Your Cash?

One other straightforward strategy to optimize your cash is by placing it in a high-yield financial savings account. With these accounts, curiosity works in your favor versus the rates of interest on debt, which work towards you.

Having cash in a no or low curiosity financial savings account is a waste of assets–your cash is sitting there doing nothing. Don’t let your cash be lazy! Make it be just right for you! And now, get pleasure from some explanatory math:

Let’s say you’ve $5,000 in a financial savings account that earns 0% curiosity. In a 12 months’s time, your $5,000 will nonetheless be… $5,000.

Let’s say you as a substitute put that $5,000 into an American Specific Private Financial savings account, which–as of this writing–earns 3.75% in curiosity (affiliate hyperlink). In a single 12 months, your $5,000 may have elevated to $5,188. Meaning you earned $188 simply by having your cash in a high-yield account.

And also you didn’t must do something! I’m an enormous fan of incomes cash whereas doing nothing. Is anyone not a fan of that? Apparently so, as a result of anybody who makes use of a low or no curiosity financial savings account is NOT creating wealth whereas doing nothing. Don’t be that particular person. Be the one who earns cash whereas sleeping.

Sure, We Solely Paid $28.24 for Cell Cellphone Service (for 2 telephones)

Our mobile phone service line merchandise just isn’t a typ0 (though that definitely is). We actually and actually solely paid $28.24 for each of our telephones (that’s $14.12 per particular person for these of you into division). How is such trickery potential?!? We use an MVNO!

What’s an MVNO?

Glad you requested as a result of I used to be going to let you know anyway: It’s a mobile phone service re-seller.

Kidwoods planting her veggie seeds

MVNOs are the TJ Maxx of the mobile phone service world–the identical service, A LOT cheaper. For those who’re not utilizing an MVNO, switching to 1 is a straightforward, slam-dunk, do-it-right-away means to economize each single month of each single 12 months endlessly and ever amen.

Listed below are a couple of MVNOs to contemplate:

For extra, I’ve a full chart of suppliers and their costs right here: The best way to Save Cash on Your Cell Cellphone Invoice with an MVNO: I Pay $12 a Month*

*the quantity we pay fluctuates each month as a result of it’s calibrated on what we use. Think about that! We solely pay for what we use! Will wonders ever stop. These MVNO hyperlinks are affiliate hyperlinks.

Expense Report FAQs

  • Need to understand how we handle the remainder of our cash? Take a look at How We Handle Our Cash: Behind The Scenes of The Frugalwoods Household Accounts
  • Don’t you’ve a rental property? Sure! We personal a rental property (also called our first house) in Cambridge, MA, which I focus on right here and extra just lately, right here too
  • Why do I share our bills? To offer you a way of how we spend our cash in a values-based method. Your spending will differ from ours and there’s no “one proper means” to spend and no “good” price range.
  • Are we probably the most frugal frugal folks on earth? Completely not! My hope is that by being clear about our spending, you would possibly achieve insights into your personal spending and be impressed to take proactive management of your cash.
  • Questioning the place to begin with managing your cash? Take my free, 31-day Uber Frugal Month Problem.
  • Need assist together with your cash? Rent me for a monetary session or name. Undecided what which means? Begin with a free 15-minute name.
  • For those who’re fascinated about different issues I really like, take a look at Frugalwoods Recommends.
  • Why don’t you purchase every thing domestically? We do our greatest to assist our area people and purchase as a lot of our meals as potential immediately from our farmer neighbors. Our city doesn’t have any shops, so we depend on on-line ordering and large field shops for requirements. The closest shops are 45 minutes away and we go a couple of instances a month to replenish on what we will’t get from our neighbors or on-line.

However Mrs. Frugalwoods, Don’t You Pay For X, Y, Or Even Z???

Questioning about widespread bills you don’t see listed beneath?

For those who’re questioning about anything, be at liberty to ask within the feedback part!

Alright you frugal cash voyeurs, feast your eyes on each greenback we spent in April:

Merchandise Quantity Notes
Groceries $843.52
Eating places $464.77 The ladies had per week off faculty and we took them out for a couple of particular “household date” lunches. And my husband and I took one another our for particular “date date” lunches.
Preschool $240.00 Almost executed with this invoice as Littlewoods begins Kindergarten within the fall!!!!!
Gasoline for automobiles $212.58
Family provides $174.27 The thrilling ephemera that retains a household going: bathroom paper, dishwasher cleaning soap, bathroom bowl cleaner, shampoo, floss, craft provides for the youngsters, nutritional vitamins, sunscreen… you get the image.
One used guitar $100.00
Utilities: Electrical $86.45 Clearly we had some very un-sunny months this winter! It’s a bummer when your photo voltaic panels are lined in snow and ice (and sure, now we have a roof broom, however no, it doesn’t at all times work). Trying ahead to sunny days forward!
Tractor elements and fluids $78.49 Gotta maintain that tractor tuned!
Truck registration $76.00
Potting soil and seeds $72.12 Essential to begin with good soil
Web $72.00
Rooster feed $65.52
An outside broom, buckets, and so on… $62.45
Diesel for tractor $45.56
Beer and wine $45.00
Toothbrush $42.39 My new PINK toothbrush (affiliate hyperlink).
Well being Insurance coverage premium $41.74
LED Storage Lights $31.79 New LED Storage Lights for the barn and tractor storage space (affiliate hyperlink).
Patreon $30.60
Espresso store dates $30.52
Physician go to co-pay $30.00
Mobile phone service for 2 telephones $28.24
Maple syrup $28.00 From our neighbor
Storm Door Latch $26.37 Mr. FW changed our damaged storm door latch with a new storm door latch (affiliate hyperlink).Works nice!
Guitar Picks and Strings $17.47 Guitar picks and strings for the guitar learner (affiliate hyperlink).
Remedy co-pay $15.00
Spotify $13.77
Bead craft package $10.57 Birthday reward for considered one of Kidwoods’ buddies. I LOVE giving these craft kits a birthday presents–we gifted the scarf making kits final 12 months and this 12 months, they’re all into BEADS!!! (affiliate hyperlink)
Ski snack $5.00
TOTAL: $2,990.19

How was your April?

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