Savings September In Review

Hey everyone! I have a little different type of  post today. As some of you may know DJ and I have an annual tradition of doing a lil’ something we call Savings September. We have noticed that summers tend to make a big ole’ dent in the spending arena, so every September we use to refocus, re-establish good habits, and look for ways to be smarter about spending, especially leading up to the holiday season. We don’t want this to be limited to September either- the goal is that by creating these conscientious, yet practical, habits we will be able to take what we have learned and apply it to each month thereafter.

I wasn’t sure if I was going to make a post initially; I never have in the past. However, this year was particularly successful, and a few of you have expressed interest in ways we have saved! SO without further adieu, here are some little easy tips and tricks that helped us save 42% of what we spent in August. Yes-42%!!! Something we predominately learn each time we do this is the little expenses and choices add up!

1.Limiting Eating Out.This one is probably not a big surprise that it’d be a saver & it didn’t mean we never ate out. Basically, we limited our eating out to either social hangouts with friends or date nights together. I tried to be diligent about prepping more and making sure there was something DJ and I could easily have for lunch rather than him buying lunch every day at work. This used to be a routine for us, but it definitely fell through the cracks through the summer. Feels good to be back in the swing!


2. Limiting Coffee Out. I definitely still had my Peet’s <3… but I used up old gift cards with a couple dollars sitting on them here and there at various coffee shops. I tried to only go to Peet’s once or twice a week when the school load was extra heavy and ordered a small most times.

3. Groceries. This is probably where we saved the most. I tried to use up every little thing we had in the pantry/freezer/fridge before going back to the store. I would create meals surrounding what we already had. For example, I knew we had fish in the freezer, so I would go get rice and a veggie to “fill in” a meal with what we needed to use up. I also tried to be attentive to making the wisest decision among choices. For instance, usually when I get tomatoes, I don’t pay too much mind to the couple cent difference between the Roma and the cherry tomatoes. But when you opt for the cheaper one and apply that mindset to every item you are buying over weeks, months, years it really adds up- especially on things that you don’t mind a slight difference. Oh, and buying the on sale in season fruits makes a HUGE difference too- and taste better!


4. Skipping on the non-essentials. I loveee myself some carbonated bevies, especially “ICE” waters. But the thing is, they ain’t cheap when you buy them often! I always throw in a couple bottles when I’m at the store along with some gum from the cash register- but with how frequently I chew gum, it just isn’t a wise investment and a habit that needed some breaking. Rather than buying ICEs, we bought 3 large packs of Bubbly water for $10 and stopped buying gum entirely. I do have mints in need of freshening up my breath on the go though. Not only has this saved monetarily, but I no longer even crave the ICEs or gum. This doesn’t mean I won’t grab a pack here or there, but I don’t have the desire for a piece of gum every hour of the day.

5. Poshmark!!! I sold quite a bit on Poshmark this past month, and then had credit in my account available with the sales. I noticed I needed new face-wash, but my favorite face-wash that I discovered through Fab Fit Fun costs around $34. Ugh! That’s how they get you. I decided to check Poshmark to see if I could find some for cheaper. I negotiated for two bottles that would be about 1/2 of the price using the Poshmark credit. Score! It makes me wonder what other items I can find on there.

6. Being cognizant of saving electricity. I have a bad habit of keeping lights on going room to room (It drove my mom nuts growing up). We have both been extra diligent in making sure to turn lights off upon leaving a room and when we leave the house. It’s a great habit we have developed, and now it would bother me to keep them on and leave.

7. Buying in Bulk. At some point I noticed we were running low on some cleaning supplies, toilet paper and other essentials. I remembered I had received a coupon from Bed Bath and Beyond to get $20 off $80 spent. I bought all the stuff that we needed (including a couple fall candles-  autumn necessities 😉 ) all online. We are stocked up on tons of cleaning supplies, a new shower liner we desperately needed, dishwashing soap, and toilet paper for way cheaper if I had bought them at a regular grocery store. The delivery also came with 2 $60 gift-cards towards HelloFresh. Also, at Target you will sometimes see if you buy a certain number of items, you can get a $5 gift-card back. I always try to stock up on laundry detergent and household essentials when I see those promos going on. Right now if you get a flu shot at CVS affiliated with Target- you can also get a $5 giftcard to Target (just call before you go to make sure they are doing the promotion). But get yo flu shot, peopleeee!


8. Using Cosmetics I already Have. I don’t know about you, but I have a bunch of little “samples” sitting around of makeup, shampoo, body wash, etc. Rather than just buying something new when I ran out of something, I gathered up all my samples and have been using everything up. Those little samples go a long way! Not only have I discovered some products I really like along the way, but I am clearing up space in the cabinet too. Oh! And I’ve started using olive oil to remove makeup- it works wonders and is so gentle- no more needing to buy makeup remover!

9. Having fun, restful weekends at home. I love to be busy and plan, plan, plan. But even seemingly cheap plans can become expensive, especially around here- you’ve got unexpected parking expenses, food, gas money, etc.. Not having a ton of weekend plans reminded me how important (and fun) just a weekend at home is for rest & rejuvenation. I also was able to get ahead on some school projects, so that always feels good! Oh, and DJ definitely needed the time to breathe now that the season has ended. I’m excited to plan some lax dates this month when we carve pumpkins, watch Halloween movies, make homemade wine together, practice baking soufflés, and have picnics with the lovely autumn weather!

10. Mint. This financial management app is incredible. It is super easy to use and understand. Being conscious of where every dollar goes, seeing our budget clearly, and having alerts when we are about to go over a set budget has been tremendously helpful in being good stewards of our money.

We also have some other just general saving tips that we have used for a couple years or gained over past Savings Septembers:

  • We love Groupon . This is where we get some restaurant deals & most of our hotel deals  (along with Orbitz to collect Orbitz bucks!)- always make sure to get points or rewards for your travels! It’s a free night in a hotel or a free plane ride eventually. I also have accounts with & for when they have the cheapest comparative rates.
  • Installing Wikibuy into your Internet toolbar is a big saver! Every time you are about to make a purchase, Wikibuy will scour the internet for coupon codes, deals, promos, etc. and automatically apply it to your order if it finds one. You also get money back many times and can use that toward other purchases.
  • Sometimes I like to peruse before making a purchase to see if there are any coupons for something I may need too.
  • I have subscribe and save on Amazon for certain things we rebuy every few months- like shavers and Swiffer refills. This saves 5% for each purchase, and we would buy that stuff every couple months anyways- so why not save 5%?

As you can see, a lot of the savings do not come from really any novel ideas, but simply being conscious of each purchase. Hope this was somewhat helpful for someone! If you have any tips and tricks I’d LOVE to hear them too! Have a beautiful week, everyone 🙂

xo <3



83 thoughts on “Savings September In Review

  1. This is AMAZING!!! So helpful! Thank you for sharing! Definitely going to use some of your tips! We’re trying to save $$$ for a wedding! So every week we’re like how much did we save that we can put into savings. I stopped drinking coffee altogether about 3 months ago! I’ve saved a bunch on sticking to tea and just buying bulk tea bags!

    1. I am so glad this was helpful 🙂 I wasn’t sure if these tips were just common knowledge, so your comment was very encouraging!!! Dang girl! I am impressed you put away the coffee- I could never haha. I admire people that do though. Good luck with the wedding saving, you’ve got this! When is the big day?!

  2. This is such a great idea! I’m really bad at saving money, so this post was lifesaver! I just got addicted to coffee, but I’m trying to make coffee at home now to save money. 🙂

    1. Aw, Sapphire, I am so thankful this was helpful! You know I almost deleted the post because I wasn’t sure if this was all just common knowledge or if it would be helpful at all. So this comment really means a ton! And coffee at home is a HUGE saver! I still use k-cups which can be a $$ sucker, but the ones at Trader Joe’s are reasonably priced and tasty too 🙂 Thank you for stopping by, Chica!

  3. You’re so organized! Nice tips. Have you tried the Ibotta app? You don’t get a huge amount of money but I figure I gotta buy groceries anyways so why not get some money back.

    1. Aw, thank you, Steffani!! I have heard of it, but I don’t know much about it and haven’t looked into it much- going to do that right now!! Thanks for sharing with me, girl 🙂 Always about getting that money back!

  4. Do you use Ebates when you shop online? It’s cashback website and if you install the plugin to your browser, it automatically tells you if there’s any cashback available on the site. I love it and it helps save a few bucks on every purchase. If you haven’t tried it, I’ll send you my link so you can get extra back on your first purchase!

    I completely agree that summer just blows money away haha. It’s because there’s so many outdoor activities you want to fit in that you can’t during the winter months. I should definitely reign in the spending before the holidays.

    Looking at the prices is so helpful when grocery shopping! I always look at the per price, per pound, per ounce, etc. when shopping because it typically is better to buy a larger size even if it means a few dollars more up front. In the long run it saves you since it lasts longer too!

    1. Wait!!! I have been meaning to check out E-bates. Need to do this ASAP!! I recently heard about this from a friend, but haven’t done it yet. Eeek, I’m so excited to give it a go!!

      Exactly- Summer is the ultimate savings sucker! Thank goodness we have this time to recoup before holidays! And I always feel inspired to get creative in the autumn with dates and such- I think we have a bit more time too since we aren’t traveling as much.

      And totally! I am learning this more and more. I feel like the saving game is always ongoing. There is ALWAYS a way to save a bit more. I used to shop at Safeway and it makes me cringe thinking how much money we wasted there when there was a TJ’s down the road the whole time!

      Thanks for sharing your tips, Maureen. Okay now to go check out E-bates. Woohoo!

      1. Let me know if you want my ebates link! You can get extra money back on your first purchase! So who doesn’t like free money hehe

        I completely agree you can be more creative during fall with dates! You can be outside without feeling like you’re going to sweat to death lol

        TJ’s is so dangerous for me that I actually spend more there than the Shop Rite that’s closer. So now I only go to TJ’s if I need staples from there.

        Have a great Tuesday 🙂

      2. Thanks so much! I actually already am all signed up- they have a $10 walmart giftcard for first timers too. I’m so excited about this site!


        Haha- that makes sense. They have sooo many awesome products. It does take all my willpower to resist sometimes.

        You too, Maureen 🙂 (well Wednesday now!)

      3. YES! I already have been perusing. I have a feeling I’ll be spending a lot of time (but saving a LOT of money) with this!

      4. Download the little add on thing (technical term right there 😉 Saves so much time since it’ll let you know right when you go to a website if cashback is available

  5. What a wonderful and timely post! I have been trying to be more conscious with my spending. I do rely pretty heavily on coupons at Kroger, Aldi for better prices on our staple items, and we cook nearly all of our meals at home. Bruch last weekend even included a buy one entrée get one free because I’m all about those deals. 😉 I did treat myself to a latte yesterday, but that I also have cut way back on as compared to a few years ago. Kudos to you and DJ for initiating this savings plan, and I appreciate you sharing!

    1. Aw I’m so glad. To be entirely honest I almost deleted it because I felt like it may have been all just common knowledge, ya know? So the fact that it has been helpful for you and others is so exciting for me. It’s all about being conscious right? Just recognizing every dollar for what it’s worth. It’s so easy to justify spending for convenience, but it feels sooo good to do a little extra, think a few extra seconds, and make a better decision. Ahh I so miss Aldi <3 One day we will be back in the midwest and shop there alll the time.

      Heck ya! Those deals are the best. An entire free entree is a big saving too. Brunch is always crazy pricy here, so I need to find deals like that!!

      And that's what it's all about- just progressively making the small changes and improvements, right? You work hard, and a latte every once in a while is a special, fun treat! Especially if it was an autumn flavored one 😉 Entirely necessary.

      Thank you so much for your thoughts and comments, Kori! I was a bit nervous about sharing this post, so this was very encouraging

      1. I don’t care if it may be common knowledge because sometimes just reading it in black & white can remind & motivate me! Even doing some projects of my own (with huge help from Matt) has felt much better than simply buying things!

        I live for brunch & savings! 😆

        I love that! Yes, a treat on occasion is so necessary, but it’s nice not to make it an everyday occurrence. That way it remains special.


      2. Aw thanks so much, Kori 🙂

        And exactly!!! The more rare makes it even better!

  6. I love the Saving September idea! I consciously try to find ways to save in my mind, but I haven’t fully committed to writing it out to help me better. I’ll have to give this idea a try for this month and see what happens! Hope your day is fantastic so far! 🙂

    1. Thanks, girl! Aww, I’m so glad this inspired you in some way 🙂 I hope it goes well. I am definitely amazed at how the seemingly small purchases add up. Hope you had a great start to your week too, Stephanie! I so appreciate you stopping by !

    1. Aww thanks so much, it is definitely rewarding (and also convicting where I see where soo many needless dollars go!). Hope you found something of value here, girlie. Have such a wonderful rest of your week and thank you so much for stopping by. <3 <3

    1. Hey, Shan! Thanks so much for stopping by 🙂 I love when I see your icon pop up! Using up the samples was actually really fun- it was kind of a little challenge too, and I genuinely found products I loved doing it! Hope you find that tip beneficial and enjoy some of those samples 🙂 Have a great week ahead!

  7. Peet’s Coffee is delicious! Once I went there with my cousin. And it’s surprising that I liked it, because I like my coffee a certain way. We have a french press at home 😛
    And yes, buying in bulk definitely helps save! My family has half our basement full of storage. Sometimes when I go shopping with my grandma and she buys small one-dinner things that are near the same price as the family packs! We’re grateful we have our storage downstairs. All that could last us months!

    1. Isn’t it just the best?! I am full fledged obsessed with my Peety <3

      That storage spot in your basement sounds like a dream come true! I think I'd have a field day there. Love it!

      Thanks for stopping by, Christina! Have such a great week 🙂

  8. Great tips! We just bought a new (second) car and I’ve been analyzing our budget trying to see where we can save.
    I’ve never tried olive oil to remove eye makeup, but I love coconut oil for that purpose – try it! Have a great week!

    1. Glad you liked these tips, Susie!!

      Ooo I love Coconut Oil too! I used to use it in the shower too, to shave mostly (and it smelled magical!). I just have so much extra olive oil sitting around so I’ll use it all up then probably restock on my coconut oil too! Have you ever done the hair masks with it ? I hear good things, but have not yet tried. Have a great week too, thank you so much for stopping by 🙂

  9. these are some great tips. have you checked out My points ( I do this all the time. you can get points for answering surveys, buying things on-line,and many other things as well. Plus you use these points to get gift cards. I almost always cash my points in for amazon gift cards and then turn around and use it when I purhcase my next amazon itmes. I just got a $25 amazon gift card last month.

  10. That sure is admirable Mackenzie and saving like this makes it A-OK to splurge for special occasions other times. You did great! I didn’t know about the olive oil for removing makeup – that is really good to know. I started following a blogger about six months ago. She is originally from Belgium. Her and her husband have a unique life – not for everyone, but seeing your list of how you saved, makes me want to pass along her list … anyway, many months of the year, they have a gig where they do house sitting and pet sitting. They have no permanent home, they call themselves nomads with a van. So they do those long-term “sitting” gigs in other’s homes, often for the same “clients” every year. They are trusted, so have commitments to return. When they have no “sitting gigs” they travel. They have been traveling since July. She does not post much when traveling, depends on whether she has wireless or not. So, every month she publishes their monthly expenses – sometimes they have friends where they stay and this cuts down on some expenses. Kinda interesting so I’ll pass it along:

    1. Thanks, Linda!! That’s the idea for sure 🙂 we just try to save wherever we can to enjoy where it really matters! Your comment is so encouraging. I just use the olive oil for eye makeup mainly- I forgot to clarify, but some people say using on their whole face makes them break out! I just use exfoliating face wash for my face to get the foundation off!

      Oh my goodness- this blogger sounds fascinating and also incredible!!! I cannot wait to check out her blog- this is sooo up my alley 😍 thank you for sharing with me, Linda! I so appreciate your suggestions!

      1. I use the Neutrogena makeup remover cloths when I wear makeup – I don’t wear it all the time these days since I work from home. That does make sense and I have oily skin to begin with, every since I was a teenager.

        Yes, she is interesting – sometimes it is hard to comment on her posts though – the comments get hung up. She said it does not happen to everyone, so if you comment and up top you get a message in red, you might have to go right to the website for it to work. Interesting lifestyle and very adventurous isn’t it? She’ll be back to blogging regularly when she returns from travelin’ … glad you liked the suggestion Mackenzie.

      2. Those have always been my go-to too! I just go through them so quickly I had to figure something else out! But I especially love taking them for traveling 🙂

        Hmm that’s interesting! I’ll be sure to keep an eye on my comments- I tend to get stuck in people’s spam ques sometimes too. Have a great Wednesday 🙂

      3. I have oily skin in my T-zone, so I wear long-wearing make-up and I really have to scrub it off – we’re talking first those little eye makeup remover pads as I wear long-lasting eye makeup as well, and then Neutrogena cloths to remove the foundation. Yikes!

        I mostly notice it with my comments on her site, but you’ll see the maroon-colored message when you try to comment so I just post right on her site instead.

      4. Oh I am so oily in my -tzone too!! I feel your pain! Gotta do what we gotta do, right?!

        Oooo I see- ok thanks for explaining!!

  11. I’ve never tried Poshmark but I keep hearing about it. Sounds like an awesome little site! Ahhh! My boyfriend leaves the light on when he leaves the room & it drives me up a freakin’ wall!! I just evil-eye him when I see him do it now & he gets up right away to turn it off hahaha. Also, remember to unplug your chargers, toaster, coffee pot, etc to save more energy!! 😄

    I would’ve never thought that the toilet paper would be cheaper at Bed Bath & Beyond!! Thanks for letting us know!! & HelloFresh is fun! Have you tried it before?!

    I tried using olive oil & a bit of conditioner to wash my makeup brushes & I started breaking out. Do you just use it plain to wipe off your makeup?? I feel that’d become more expensive in the long run because we use it to cook too & already run out often lol. What kind of oil do you cook with?!

    Big question: why don’t you use Expedia?!? You have accounts with all the travelling sites but that one & it’s the only one I use so I’m curious.

    I love using Groupon!! OH & hey if you use Bing search instead of Google, they rack up points & eventually you can get a giftcard or gift from them! 😄

    Great post, babe!!! ♡

    1. Hey Hunida!!! Ok Poshmark is awesome- things I never ever thought I could actually sell (like old clothes) sell on Poshmark. It’s amazing! Way better than Ebay or Craig’s.

      Lol- I need your evil eye to keep me in check!! it’s seriously one of my worst habits. WAIT- if you unplug them (even if theyre off) does it still save money?!?! This is so good to know!

      I have done HelloFresh! It’s pretty good- not my favorite meal delivery service, but not bad. Do you like it?!

      Oooooo I forgot to clarify! I use it ONLY to take off my eye makeup then use an exfoliating face wash after. I don’t use it to remove my foundation, because I’m pretty sure it’d make me breakout too! And with just using it for my eyes I use soo little- it really goes a long way! I have one bottle in the bathroom and one in the kitchen 🙂 But like you said- the one in the kitchen is emptied REAL quick.

      So I think Orbitz and Expedia are comparable!! I just started with orbitz and since I was accruing points (orbitz bucks) I stuck with it. But I think Expedia is really similar! It does find really great deals too.

      I did NOT know that about bing- girl, these tips are incredible! Thank you sooo much for sharing! I’m psyched to use um’! Watch out Bing… I’m comin’ for ya … !

      1. Ahh, interesting!! It’s kind of like that site ThredUp, too?! I’m gonna send some clothes to them if I can remember to. 😛 I’d do Poshmark now that you’ve convinced me but ThredUp has already sent me a bag lol.

        Yes!! Unplugging your chargers etc. even when they’re not in use will save you money!! But, remember to turn the lights off when you’re not in the room will save you even more. 😉 😉

        Yeah I tried 3 meals from HelloFresh once & thought they weren’t bad but, not my fave either!! What’s your fave service?!

        OOO! Okay, that makes sense that you only use the olive oil for your eyes!!

        Ah good to know about the travel sites. I was worried I was on the wrong one! I really like Expedia but, would switch in a heartbeat because I don’t have all the points in the world, y’know?

        Yeah, seriously, Bing is cool! I got a $5 Sephora gift card just for searching stuff I would have anyways. 😀

      2. I think so!! I have never used ThredUp but I would think they are similar?!

        That is SOOO good to know. I’m gonna walk around and unplug whatever I can today hahah.

        I agree! I like Sunbasket! Blue Apron is delicious, but not very healthy.. sunbasket is healthy and it is sooo good! (and easier to follow I think). How about you? Oh, and we love Freshly, but you don’t cook that yourself 😉

        That makes sense- but yeah, I think it’s comparable!

        That’s amazing!!! I am so excited to use it now!

      3. I’ll let you know how ThredUp is if I ever get the bag sent out. 😉 & yes, unplug all of your appliances!!

        I’ve always wanted to try Freshly for when my boyfriend’s at work & can’t make dinner for me lol. I’ve never tried Blue Apron but I loved Sunbasket, too. I thought their food was SO yummy but, the portions were too small for us!! I liked Green Chef a lot but, they pick your meals for you every week & I wanted to be able to choose what we eat!

        <3 <3

      4. Yes- exactly! I could not have said it any better. I didn’t have the best of luck with green chef- some of the meals we definitely wouldn’t have chose ourselves! Thanks for sharing your thoughts !

  12. Thanks for sharing, Mackenzie!! This is super helpful and it’s also fun just to get a look into how you two saved money. I’m all about saving however we can since neither of us make that much. Groceries is definitely the biggest killer for us! We really don’t eat out or buy extras, but all the necessities add up so much at the store. I tend to get lazy with looking for coupons or sales, but you’re right, they can make a big difference! Grocery stores can get sneaky too because they’ll put something usually more expensive on sale to catch us, and yet it’s still pricier than a different brand or type (like different types of tomatoes lol). 😉 I love Groupon! There are some really great deals on there, though Amazon can also rival Groupon sometimes, especially with Prime.
    Oh and we totally use the same toothpaste! Hahaha XD

    1. Aw I’m so glad!!! Yes- groceries is definitely our biggest killer as well. I literally cringe when I think about how much money we spent on the big chain grocery store out here when there was a Trader Joes right down the road the whole time- our spending is much better shopping there! And you are so right!!! I have noticed that- something will be on sale as on “on brand” item, but the off brand will still be cheaper (and it’s the same thing!!).

      Oh yes- I looveeee Amazon Prime. That’s primarily where we buy anything we need that’s not a food item. We primarily use Groupon for restaurants and hotel deals!! (though occasionally find good deals on bulk items too!).

      YESSSS, hahaa. I love that you use that toothpaste too. I have such sensitive gums, and this stuff works like a charm! Thanks for sharing your thoughts and stopping in, Courtney 🙂

      1. I wish we had a Trader Joe’s! We usually just shop at Walmart since we noticed the full price items are still cheaper than items on sale at chain grocery stores. Of course I don’t trust produce or meat products from there so then we head to our local grocery store for those haha.

        Amazon is the best! I love that not only are the prices usually fantastic, but you can read all the reviews to make sure it’s not something sketchy haha. And of course if it doesn’t work out, then you can just return it. 😉 We actually used Groupon for our honeymoon hotel deal! I think it saved us like $300, it was amazing! Oh and we were able to find a Dyson vacuum for about $180 on Groupon. <3 Love it!

        That toothpaste really is fantastic! I have the most ridiculously sensitive teeth (it takes like double the amount of lidocaine to numb me up for dental work!), and it's the only thing that makes a difference. Though I've tried other versions of Sensodyne and have had weird reactions, like lock-jaw symptoms! So I just stick with Pronamel lol.

      2. Oh yes!! Walmart is great too- similar with pricing & they have everything too! Right now Ebates is having a deal where if you sign up you get a $10 giftcard to walmart- in case you aren’t a member already!

        I love that prime is the free and easy returns too. Makes all the difference. Dang that is amazing you got one for your honeymoon! Woohoo! And YES! Dyson is the BEST- what a steal.

        OMG me too. We are the same. I need soo much lidocaine- one type I wasn’t numb enough for a root canal- I can still feel that horrid pain when I think about it– ugh! TMI haha. That’s crazy you got lock jaw from those other kinds?! Okay sticking to pronamel too!

      3. Ooh I’m not a member of Ebates, so I will have to see if I can get that!!
        Oh my gosh, that happened to me too with a root canal!! That’s actually how I found out about my uber sensitivity. It was the worst! Also, my dentist has a laser he can use to numb teeth instead of shots, but even that doesn’t work on me. He’s says I’m in the like 4% that it doesn’t lol.

      4. NO WAY!!! Oh girl, isn’t it the WORST?! I have never heard of this magical laser- but I totally need to ask for this next time haha. OH and speaking of percentages— when I got my wisdom teeth out they cut a nerve and now I don’t have complete feeling in my right side of my chin and gums. (But still sensitivity everywhere else). They said I was in like the 1% or something that that happens to (OF COURSE!). haha. Still till this day I get food stuck there and don’t feel it hahah

      5. It was the worst for sure! Ever since then, I’ve noticed I will feel pain with fillings unless I ask for extra lidocaine. Now my dentist just remembers hahaha. I totally bet there’s a dentist in your area with the laser!! It’s not super common, but if it’s anywhere, it’s bound to be in California. It works on Joshua and he said he didn’t even know the dentist had started the filling and he was already done. O.O
        Oh nooo that sucks!! Wow I’m so surprised they actually cut the nerve!! That happened to my dad but it was because the surgeon was totally inexperienced and it was irresponsible on the dental office’s part. Half of his tongue is permanently numb, it’s crazy. Joshua experienced that numb sensation in his chin and jaw after his wisdom teeth extraction, but thankfully it eventually wore off. I bet that’s so annoying to deal with! Though I guess on the bright side, that’s one less area of sensitivity?? Lol.

      6. That’s so cool!

        yikes- that makes me feel lucky!! 🙁 I’m so sorry that happened to him!

        but lol, exactly! Like your perspective hahah

  13. Oh and I love that you were able to buy some of those things in bulk. Bulk is ALWAYS the cheaper option in the long run even if it’s more expensive initially. I wish we could buy in bulk sometimes, but we typically don’t have the money outright and we don’t have storage space lol. But it’s a great option if you can!!

    1. Yes, exactly!! We definitely don’t buy in bulk with everything (storage space is a big issue for us too!), but when there are those bulk item necessities that you may be out of anyways it makes a huge difference!

    1. Aww I am SOO glad!!! <3 I wasn't sure if it would be helpful for anyone- so I'm really glad it was :)

  14. These are some fab tips!

    I’m actually so big about lights being off that sometimes I’ll just fumble through the room with them off just to not have to turn them on. bahaha

    D and I learned real quick last winter just how expensive gas heat is so we’ve been really careful with our thermostat! Come winter, it literally doesn’t budge from 68 (brrrrr). In the summer I fluctuate it some to leave it higher during the day when we’re at work and lower at night. Our utility company also offers a program you can opt in that averages your annual usage, which helps the bill to not vary much month to month. We started using this program a couple of months ago, and I’m interested to see how it does this winter.

    If I could just stay out of Target I would do much better with my spending! ha

    1. Hahhah! That’s so good though! It has always been a habit habit of mine- so I was glad to break it. Actually funny tangent story- when we lived in IN, we had a townhouse and no full length mirrors. I used to stand on a chair to see my full outfit and one day I fell, hitting my ring agains the wall and losing three small diamonds from my band. I could never find them, but one day going through the room in the dark with just my cell phone light I saw a sparkle from the rug and found them! So saving electricity realllly does pay off 😉

      Ooooo I love that your utility company does the average- that is so helpful! That is actually something we have been struggling with- I love it bitter tundra cold when I sleep — 62 to be exact, but DJ hates it that cold during the day (I don’t mind cause I love being wrapped in blankets). So as hard as we try to keep it consistent that is something we are really working on.

      LOL!!! YES! Wait, that needs to be put on a tshirt hahahah

      1. Well we run our dishwasher WAY too much for just 2 people! I don’t really know what we’re doing wrong. ha We do use tubberware for our work noms everyday so I think that is part of the problem. I also hate handwashing dishes so sometimes I just cram stuff in and hope it gets clean and doesn’t ruin whatever it is. ha

        So far it’s helping a lot! It makes me a little less nervous to open the bill…just a little. lol

        Yes it does! I need therapy to deal with my tarjay addiction!

      2. Ooo yes! Before school when we were both working allll the time we lived out of tupperware containers- I noticed we ran the dishwasher a ton more too! Gotta do what you gotta do, ya know?!

      3. Oh & I totally forgot to comment on your story! That is CRAZY! Fun fact about me, I legit get paranoid anytime I just barely bump my rings. I know they can’t get “hurt” but I’m so worried. ha

      4. Ooo girl, yes, that is a valid fear for sure!! You just never know- and if you lose that diamond, it’s such a big deal! Since I did that I have had the same paranoia– I check it constantly!

  15. Hi Mackenzie, such a great post! You are using every money saving idea you can think of. Using food you already have is so important. Buying in bulk is good too. We have the 5% off on target credit card which helps everytime you shop and adds up for a whole year. Also we use Aldi too which has good food at reasonable prices. You are on the right track to saving money!! Take care, hugs, Terri xo.

    1. Hi, Terri! Thanks for reading. Entering this adult world the last couple years has been a ton of trial and error, but we have cut down spending quite a bit since moving here! I used to LOVE aldi (well I still do, we just don’t have any!). I miss it very much, but at least TJs is somewhat comparable 🙂 We actually used the Target card for a long time too and it was amazing !! Now we have a credit card that does the same with 5%, so it was an either/or type thing, but I always tell people to get it!

      Thanks for the encouragement 🙂 Have such a great rest of your week!

      1. The adult World can be quite daunting Mackenzie! I’m still figuring it out myself . I’m amazed that Aldi or not in your area yet! You are welcome for the encouragement hugs Terri xo.

      2. I know! I was SO bummed when I discovered they really don’t have them in CA… (I think they have a couple in southern and central, but not many).. Have a great Thursday ! xo

  16. This is such a great post, Mackenzie! It really is all those little things that add up. We are about to start assessing all those little places where money seems to just flow away. I’m not sure that I can be as disciplined since there always seems to be unexpected incidentals with three teens and a dog added in, but I know that we could be making better choices with our spending. 🙂

    1. Aw, thank you so much, Amy! This is so encouraging to hear.

      I’m sure budgeting/finances are a TOTALLY different story with kids and pets in the equation! Oh man.. thinking about it scares me a bit, lol!! But where there is a will there is a way- isn’t that what they say?! 😉

      Thanks for stopping by!!

  17. I LOVE that you did this post! It really is crazy how much the little decisions add up to either spending or saving money.
    Living in a city there is always free stuff, or inexpensive (ten dollars or less) activities to do. Thank for sharing your tips beauty! <3

    1. Aw, I’m so glad that you enjoyed this 🙂 I need to definitely take advantage of the freebies more!! It’s always so fun and rewarding to find those too. xox

    1. Ahh yay!!! Oh – also, I just learned about Ebates, and you get cash back with that one! Definitely a must 🙂 So glad you got something out of this post!

  18. Yes yes yes yes yes yes!! I’ve been waiting for this post since we talked about it what feels like months ago lol.
    Alex and I eat out so much, but we’ve been doing really well at making food here at home from Sunday through Thursday and I try to make enough so he has some for lunch the next day as well. I’m not big on coffee but I did use to get ice cream concretes and the ocasional latte from another place around here but I’m proud to say we haven’t gotten anything this month so that’s one way we’ve saved haha.
    As for groceries I have a weekly budget each week and we do our best to get only what we need so meal planning definitely helps a ton.
    Coconut oil works pretty good for makeup removal, and I’ve told Hunida about this too, there’s a makeup removing towel you can probably find at Ulta that’s reusable and can be washed. You just run it under warm water and remove the makeup. It’s amazing I love it!
    I think I have a groupon account I’m not sure but I do look at it every once in a while. I will be sure to look into it and Orbitz whenever we start planning a trip anywhere 😊

    1. Yes! That is exactly what we try to do too! We were the most frugal when we had just one “date day/night” per week. It makes it special too! And the big meals help with the next day lunches!

      What! I neeeed to find this makeup towel. That sounds like magic!! I am gonna go over to their site right now. Thanks for telling me about it!

      Oh, and do you have Ebates?! I didn’t mention it in this post- but it’s amazing! Definitely a must! xoxo

      1. We try to have date night once a week but I’m starting to think it’s a lot? Lol. It just sucks when we eat out all weekend long. Maybe take out or dining out once is a week or every two weeks is more than enough 😅
        No problem. I hope you find it. I saw a pack of two for $10 I think? I’m not sure if they have it in store I haven’t seen it unless it’s in another isle. But it’s definitely online.
        Yes! I have ebates but haven’t done much online shopping and I completely forgot when I ordered from Colourpop and ulta last month. Oops.

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