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SamanthaCarter

July frugalistas

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2 hours ago, mommyoffive said:

 

I will have to look this up later, but I read an article about it last week and it said the opposite.   I know the times when we have this happened to us with credit cards nothing happens to our account at all.  We don't have money taken out of our account.  We don't even have the charges on our card after we say that it isn't us.  

The protections on the cards do not seem the same to me. 

 

https://money.cnn.com/2013/12/20/pf/expert/debit-credit-cards/index.html

 

That's because debit and credit cards are treated differently by consumer protection laws. Under federal law, your personal liability for fraudulent charges on a credit card can't exceed $50. But if a fraudster uses your debit card, you could be liable for $500 or more, depending on how quickly you report it.

"I know people love their debit cards. But man oh man, they are loaded with holes when it comes to fraud," said John Ulzheimer, credit expert at CreditSesame.com, a credit management website.

Plus, if someone uses your credit card, the charge is often credited back to your account immediately after it's reported, Ulzheimer said.

Yet, if a crook uses your debit card, not only can they drain your bank account, but it can take up to two weeks for the bank to investigate the fraud and reimburse your account.

"In the meantime, you might have to pay your rent, your utilities and other bills," said Beth Givens, director of the Privacy Rights Clearinghouse. The organization recommends that consumers stick to credit cards as much as possible. 

https://www.nerdwallet.com/blog/credit-cards/credit-card-vs-debit-card-safer-online-purchases/

 

 



It's been less than 24 hours.  If the bank/credit union is notified within the first two business days, our max liability is $50, by law.  I don't have to fight my bank over it.  When the charges stop pending, they will be removed/an interim "loan" will be given while it is sorted out by the credit union, at which point the "loan" will switch to a nothingness as the debits are removed.  My card is canceled immediately, we have a buffer and savings to wait it out. That is my main annoyance.  I don't have my card. The only reason to switch to a credit card for everything is if we were living a lot closer to the paycheck than we currently are able.  Our credit union is fantastic and on top of things. We don't have to fight them.  We trust them more than a credit card company, especially since they flag any transaction that is not our norm.  The last time this happened was about 10 years ago and they called/emailed because we had a charge from Walmart and hadn't been to one in years.  It didn't fit our pattern of 'gas, cash, insurance, Amazon.' ?
 

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I think doing ok so far but I may have forgotten something.

For the 4th I bought a box of hamburger patties & a box of ice cream treats.  Don't normally buy either but it was a treat.  Did go to the fireworks show but it was free.

Mostly been staying staying home.  That helps too.

Frugal win -- couple friends gave us some garden surplus & dh got to bring home some leftover stuff from meals at work.  All that has equaled to a few free meals for us.

 

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3 hours ago, HomeAgain said:



It's been less than 24 hours.  If the bank/credit union is notified within the first two business days, our max liability is $50, by law.  I don't have to fight my bank over it.  When the charges stop pending, they will be removed/an interim "loan" will be given while it is sorted out by the credit union, at which point the "loan" will switch to a nothingness as the debits are removed.  My card is canceled immediately, we have a buffer and savings to wait it out. That is my main annoyance.  I don't have my card. The only reason to switch to a credit card for everything is if we were living a lot closer to the paycheck than we currently are able.  Our credit union is fantastic and on top of things. We don't have to fight them.  We trust them more than a credit card company, especially since they flag any transaction that is not our norm.  The last time this happened was about 10 years ago and they called/emailed because we had a charge from Walmart and hadn't been to one in years.  It didn't fit our pattern of 'gas, cash, insurance, Amazon.' ?
 

 

I am glad your credit union was on top of it.  I would rather use a credit card and not have a loan going on while they sort things out.  We don't run anywhere close to pay check to pay check so that isn't it for us. 

Our credit cards companies are totally on top of fraud charges too and email and text us right away. 

Credit cards have a ton of other protections on them too.  

I wouldn't recommend using them if you don't pay your bill every month however.  We always do so that is why they work for us. 

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Yesterday we had dental appointments and grocery shopping.

We ended up going by the discount store for the first time in years. I used to go all the time but times weren't as tight so I stopped. It is a bit skeezy. The kids thought it was very cool to find stuff so cheap. It was all snack stuff but things I couldn't have afforded otherwise. You have to watch expiration dates when you go there. I found a ton of larabars for 25cents, since we can't do reg granola bars I love finding a cheap snack for when we're on the go. I got some La Croix drinks for 10 cents. 4 boxes of gf waffle/pancake mix that doesn't expire until the end of the year, half the cost of my usual flour mix even on sale. Some Lindt and Ghirardelli chocolate for me for 40cent a bar and I can't remember what else. So, I went over for this week but we won't go back there for another month or so. When I went to Aldi's I did pretty good but they had a jumbo bag of colby jack on sale so I grabbed one, even though dh had just got one because it was a really good price and the kids go through cheese like crazy. I'm down to $211 for the last two shopping trips of the month but I've got lost of stuff stocked up, including some meat(this week they had chicken breast on sale) and lots of dried goods. I think I can squeeze it out but I can't do anymore stocking up this month, except for meat- I'm leaving $10 or so on my list each week to grab any meat on sale. 

More nibbles on my bed for sale but no commitment! I'm going to give it a few more days and lower the price.

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I've been listening to Dave Ramsey again working on getting my head back in the uber-frugal mindset. You guys have been talking about unexpected expenses and that has been heavy on my mind b/c we're trying to plan out everything. So many things we should expect but don't- I mean dh had mentioned something about tires here awhile back so we should have had that more to the forefront. There are so many things that we think are unexpected but aren't really- but being frugal we hopefully have the extra cushion to survive it and hopefully work on better anticipating it. The kids are in Scouts so we'll have expenses for that come next month- it is much nicer dealing w/ hypothetical budgets instead of the real deal! 

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Okay, so timeline of my debit card fraud incident:

12:30am Weds morning -someone tried to buy $1200 worth of stuff from Nike.  My bank quickly caught it and started trying to wake me up, lol.
6:30-7am Weds - talked to my bank, canceled my debit card, and they flagged all the purchases as unauthorized.
7am Thurs - only one charge still remained, that for $454, because it was the only one still showing as pending.
11am Thurs - received a call from Nike.  The charge was still pending because they had it flagged as well when it came through on Weds.  It rang in their alert system when someone who had never ordered from them started trying to purchase wayyyy too much.  My bank contacted them on Weds and they called me first thing in the morning on their end to make sure that I hadn't placed the order.  They canceled it completely, which freed that pending charge.

It's Friday morning.  My account is now back to normal.  I still can't access it much without my debit card, but this week has turned a bit in my favor. The $11 I thought I would have to spend for ds' prescription turned out to not be so.  They had listed all 5 bottles of medicine under a single prescription instead of as refills and I had already paid the co-pay the first day.  I haven't needed groceries.  We haven't needed anything else.  I reconciled our account with dh this morning and noticed that our low point in the account this month will be higher than our low point last month, which means we are doing very well at sticking within our budgeted categories.  He's going out to dinner with a co-worker tonight, and while he and she both encouraged ds and I to come along, I think we're going to pass.  The menu feels too heavy for a summer evening, and I don't feel like spending money on food we won't appreciate.

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HomeAgain, glad to hear things are working out well. 

If scholarship application deadline for children’s choir is July 12 and tuition due July 18, you would expect the committee to turn it over pretty fast, right? I kinda need to know. It’s $555 per child per year, but I can pay monthly. 

Dh saved up for tires, called around for the best deal and took the car in tonight. Go dh! Next is transmission repair on my car. Something is up with it, but it’s not bad -yet. 

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UGH- my Chromebook keeps messing up. I'll try to make this coherent. Kudos Samantha, hope you get the tires installed without a hitch. Dh is taking our tires to be aligned this morning. Our tires keep wearing too fast. We bought lifetime alignment and keep taking them in but they don't seem to be doing it right- this time he is going to a different location and hoping this guy does it right, we can't afford to keep replacing tires so quickly. We've not had any spending other than necessities- the electricity bill went through yesterday and I paid our car and auto insurance. I'm very glad to have the insurance taken care of- we're good for 1 yr for the house and 6 months for auto. Now, to work on saving for taxes for Dec. Today we're going to the city but we'll bring our own food and not make any extra stops.

 

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Yays!:

I sold some of the clothes my youngest has outgrown that were still in good condition for about $17.  I was pleasantly surprised, that after three kids we still had $17 worth of decent clothes that didn't have holes and stains.  I'll probably use that to buy athletic pants.  I can't stand how they've changed the fabric on new kids clothes to that itchy, sticks-to-dry-fingers material, so I have to scour resale shops and thrift stores for the soft, thin kind that they'll actually wear.  At least DS9 is getting to the point where he'll wear jeans and cargo pants regularly.  He's going to work with DH one day this month, so I'll need to make sure he has nice pants and decent shoes.  Those are generally easy to find second hand.

Years ago we had one of those high-yield online savings accounts before the economy tanked and there were actually such a thing as high yield savings accounts.  We hadn't logged into the account for at least eight years, and the bank finally closed our account for non-use and mailed us a check.  We didn't have much in the account, less than $100, but it was a nice surprise to get in the mail today!

The kids were all at camp yesterday, so I dug a Panera gift card out of my wallet from last year and treated myself to a bagel.  DH has celiac so it's a nice treat to have when he's not with me.

And we're trying to get some of the small projects done around the house that we've already bought the materials for.  We finally finished the backsplash in the master bathroom so I can quit ruining the wall behind the sink.  It was just peel-and-stick sheets I bought on Amazon, but they've been sitting in the box for at least a year!  If you wait long enough to finally get around to projects you already have the materials for, it feels pretty frugal! ?

Booooooooos!:

I've thrown out more food than usual lately.  Between the Stinky Ribs Incident, the holiday, a trip to FIL's house for lunch and swimming, and a week of camp, I miscalculated how much produce and leftovers would actually get eaten this week.  Whoops.  And then I dropped one of the leftovers containers in the freezer and shattered the lid.  Shards o' Plastic Soup isn't one of DH's favorites, so I had to toss that out.

Birthday season starts at our house in a couple weeks.  Not that I'm booing anyone getting older, but it just adds up so fast with so many birthdays in our family in a very short timespan.  Within four weeks, both of my parents, my brother, and two of my kids have birthdays, and our anniversary is right in the middle of that.  Normally we're not big party and gifts people, but a few of those are milestone birthdays this year.

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Frugal win:  We got all 4 repair requests from our buyer completed for under $100!  1. Securing banister= $0 because it just needed more screws which we had. 2. Replacing missing shingles= $3 for shingles that we found at the restore and nails. 3. Missing GFCI outlet in kitchen= $40 for the 2 outlets we needed.  4. Half a circuit not grounded=$70, $50 for electrician to come look at it,he confirmed what we thought was likely the cause but before he could come back to fix it I figured it out.  $20 for a new switch, outlet, and voltage meter.

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2 hours ago, BarbecueMom said:

Yays!:

I sold some of the clothes my youngest has outgrown that were still in good condition for about $17.  I was pleasantly surprised, that after three kids we still had $17 worth of decent clothes that didn't have holes and stains.  I'll probably use that to buy athletic pants.  I can't stand how they've changed the fabric on new kids clothes to that itchy, sticks-to-dry-fingers material, so I have to scour resale shops and thrift stores for the soft, thin kind that they'll actually wear.  At least DS9 is getting to the point where he'll wear jeans and cargo pants regularly.  He's going to work with DH one day this month, so I'll need to make sure he has nice pants and decent shoes.  Those are generally easy to find second hand.

Years ago we had one of those high-yield online savings accounts before the economy tanked and there were actually such a thing as high yield savings accounts.  We hadn't logged into the account for at least eight years, and the bank finally closed our account for non-use and mailed us a check.  We didn't have much in the account, less than $100, but it was a nice surprise to get in the mail today!

The kids were all at camp yesterday, so I dug a Panera gift card out of my wallet from last year and treated myself to a bagel.  DH has celiac so it's a nice treat to have when he's not with me.

And we're trying to get some of the small projects done around the house that we've already bought the materials for.  We finally finished the backsplash in the master bathroom so I can quit ruining the wall behind the sink.  It was just peel-and-stick sheets I bought on Amazon, but they've been sitting in the box for at least a year!  If you wait long enough to finally get around to projects you already have the materials for, it feels pretty frugal! ?

Booooooooos!:

I've thrown out more food than usual lately.  Between the Stinky Ribs Incident, the holiday, a trip to FIL's house for lunch and swimming, and a week of camp, I miscalculated how much produce and leftovers would actually get eaten this week.  Whoops.  And then I dropped one of the leftovers containers in the freezer and shattered the lid.  Shards o' Plastic Soup isn't one of DH's favorites, so I had to toss that out.

Birthday season starts at our house in a couple weeks.  Not that I'm booing anyone getting older, but it just adds up so fast with so many birthdays in our family in a very short timespan.  Within four weeks, both of my parents, my brother, and two of my kids have birthdays, and our anniversary is right in the middle of that.  Normally we're not big party and gifts people, but a few of those are milestone birthdays this year.

 

You will have to have tell me how you like those.  

We have a bunch of birthdays in a short amount of time in the spring too.  It is painful. 

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6 minutes ago, mommyoffive said:

 

You will have to have tell me how you like those.  

We have a bunch of birthdays in a short amount of time in the spring too.  It is painful. 

So far, I like them.  I haven't caulked between the vanity top and the backsplash yet, and time will tell if the adhesive works well in a humid room.  If you look really close you can tell they are just overlapping sticker sheets.  From normal standing at the sink distance, you can't tell.  But it's the master bathroom, no one is coming over and staring at the backsplash.

Even though we won't have high-end finishes when we remodel it, I'm not sure I'd put these in the kitchen.  I think we'll put actual tiles up in there.  I will probably put them over the kitchenette counters in the basement though.

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BBQMom- I feel for you- we sure wasted some food when we were busy. I'm LOL'ing about getting projects done that you have the supplies for, same here, we got plenty we could do!

hjkffj- Ya- for getting stuff done on a budget! 

____________________

Dh got the tires aligned and it seems we need a repair done to fix the tire wear issue. There goes more of our reimbursement check, at least we have the money to cover it and it should save us money on tires in the long run.

Not much else going on, got another inquiry on the bed. I wish one of these people would buy it already, pretty please!!!

I watched several videos from VIP teachers and am feeling more confident about doing the Express Interview video- but I've got to get a spot set up to record. I'm thinking I should do it in the basement but haven't picked where yet, .

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4 hours ago, soror said:

BBQMom- I feel for you- we sure wasted some food when we were busy. I'm LOL'ing about getting projects done that you have the supplies for, same here, we got plenty we could do!

hjkffj- Ya- for getting stuff done on a budget! 

____________________

Dh got the tires aligned and it seems we need a repair done to fix the tire wear issue. There goes more of our reimbursement check, at least we have the money to cover it and it should save us money on tires in the long run.

Not much else going on, got another inquiry on the bed. I wish one of these people would buy it already, pretty please!!!

I watched several videos from VIP teachers and am feeling more confident about doing the Express Interview video- but I've got to get a spot set up to record. I'm thinking I should do it in the basement but haven't picked where yet, .

 

Good luck.

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I've really botched this month up, but the good news most of it is temporary. I got a speeding ticket and I'm trying to gather up money to pay that off. I sold a slide for $60 but ended up spending most of that money when I was visiting family. I was actually somewhat conservative with money but I bought some groceries, donuts from a local place, and a couple deeply discounted workbooks on the way home at a salvage store). I sold one of my baby carriers on ebay and I'm saving that money toward the ticket. I have a guy interested in my guitar on craigslist but I'm not sure if that will materialize. 

We saw a financial advisor over the week. We're not enrolling dd in K3. I never paid the registration fee or anything. I'm going to return her school uniform clothing. I was going to use that money toward the ticket, but now that I think about it I might need that for ds, if the public school uses uniforms. I'm not really certain. I need to find out. Yes, you heard me correctly. We're going to try the "awful" public school for ds. With dd home it's so hard for me to get ds on track (some of that is the distractions from dd but some of that is just ds being difficult). Dh had a bunch of dental work done this month, but he found a dentist with a lower quote and smaller list of things that needed addressed so we did save on that. 

Dh's mom paid for the groceries that dh picked up while out with her. He bought a giant box of minute rice and some other items. 

I'm still doing my swagbucks and building up points. The save on gas thing I researched isn't helpful. Turns out the gift cards for Sam's/WM work at their pumps, but only the WM pumps and Murphy pumps in WM parking lots will generate a discount. And they said it all kinda evens out because the WM gas prices are higher than Sam's to begin with. The discount is 3 cents per gallon. I'm just going to do my gas normally and use any GCs I get on groceries or move to paypal to help cover my ticket. 

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6 minutes ago, heartlikealion said:

I've really botched this month up, but the good news most of it is temporary. I got a speeding ticket and I'm trying to gather up money to pay that off. I sold a slide for $60 but ended up spending most of that money when I was visiting family. I was actually somewhat conservative with money but I bought some groceries, donuts from a local place, and a couple deeply discounted workbooks on the way home at a salvage store). I sold one of my baby carriers on ebay and I'm saving that money toward the ticket. I have a guy interested in my guitar on craigslist but I'm not sure if that will materialize. 

We saw a financial advisor over the week. We're not enrolling dd in K3. I never paid the registration fee or anything. I'm going to return her school uniform clothing. I was going to use that money toward the ticket, but now that I think about it I might need that for ds, if the public school uses uniforms. I'm not really certain. I need to find out. Yes, you heard me correctly. We're going to try the "awful" public school for ds. With dd home it's so hard for me to get ds on track (some of that is the distractions from dd but some of that is just ds being difficult). Dh had a bunch of dental work done this month, but he found a dentist with a lower quote and smaller list of things that needed addressed so we did save on that. 

Dh's mom paid for the groceries that dh picked up while out with her. He bought a giant box of minute rice and some other items. 

I'm still doing my swagbucks and building up points. The save on gas thing I researched isn't helpful. Turns out the gift cards for Sam's/WM work at their pumps, but only the WM pumps and Murphy pumps in WM parking lots will generate a discount. And they said it all kinda evens out because the WM gas prices are higher than Sam's to begin with. The discount is 3 cents per gallon. I'm just going to do my gas normally and use any GCs I get on groceries or move to paypal to help cover my ticket. 

 

Sounds like you are making progress.  Good job on selling things and getting the cheaper dental work. 

If you do try out the PS for your son, remember it doesn't have to be forever if you don't like it.  Little kids also change so fast.  She may be different by the end of the year and be able to play by herself more. 

I think you did think of things to keep her busy.  But just thought I would add a few. 

Tv or other screen.  Put on some PBS shows, reading eggs and it is educational time

Busy boxes

Would she work in a work book with you guys? 

Does she do Audio books?  My kids all loved these and could keep themselves busy for hours and hours

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1 hour ago, mommyoffive said:

Sounds like you are making progress.  Good job on selling things and getting the cheaper dental work. 

If you do try out the PS for your son, remember it doesn't have to be forever if you don't like it.  Little kids also change so fast.  She may be different by the end of the year and be able to play by herself more. 

I think you did think of things to keep her busy.  But just thought I would add a few. 

Tv or other screen.  Put on some PBS shows, reading eggs and it is educational time

Busy boxes

Would she work in a work book with you guys? 

Does she do Audio books?  My kids all loved these and could keep themselves busy for hours and hours

I'm not sure about the audio books. We actually have one here we need to try out and return to the library. It came with a Bob book. 

If ds isn't here I think we will spend more time outside (we'll see how well we can handle this heat lol) where we would normally maybe feel "stuck" starting school. I'm trying to get the backyard cleaned up. I found a sprinkler in the carport. We need a new hose, but we do have a mini pool she could splash in. Dh ordered a part for the lawn mower this week. We are going to try to fix it. 

When I stopped at the salvage store I found a K workbook and I've been looking for PreK stuff (or whatever she could do with me) at the dollar stores, but for some reason they haven't had anything lately. She and I have done a workbook together before. She liked that. I got her a game on opposites when a school supply business was closing but she mastered it in a day LOL. It's just a series of cardboard cards and you find the mate. Near/Far, Big/Small, etc. She has been coloring more lately so that's a good distraction at least for a little bit of time. I'm not sure if she's ready for some of our puzzles or not, but I could try those. I do think as the year progresses she'll be able to do more things. I told dh worst case we removed ds from the public school early, but let's just see how it goes. 

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We started July with a trip to Iceland.  Not frugal, but I will say that I didn't buy any souvenirs (I did not find a t-shirt I felt worth buying).  We only packed 2 suitcases for 5 people, since they charged per bag.  We rented a car and drove along the "Ring Road."  We brought nuts and bought snack food and avoided eating in restaurants, opting for diners (mainly for brunch, as dinner is really expensive over there).  Stayed in a series of quaint hotels (either 1 or 2 shared rooms).  I am not saying any of it was cheap - even the free stuff meant buying gasoline which is expensive there.  But I will say it was reasonable.

This month I am shelling out a bunch of $$ for my kids' black belt test (including a prep camp).  I didn't realize when I signed up that there were big hits at the end of the program.  But at this point, we're not going to stop.  Effective marketing ploy.  Hopefully I can still continue to attend "included" classes after my kids (who are ahead of me) get their black belts.

Kid had a horse show last weekend.  The fees for the show were fairly small (plus it was a charity event), but the cost for the training has yet to be quoted.  I must brace myself.  I do limit my kid to 2 horse shows per year (it was 1 show up to this year).  (Oh crud, that reminds me that I need to pay for our half lease for July-August.)

In other horsey news, the kids are hosting 2 friend get-togethers at the horse barn over the next 2 weekends.  Not sure, but I'm guessing this will total about $300 for the 2 days.  I rarely do friend stuff, and this is easier than trying to entertain them at home, for me.  (Plus, since my kid is a horse maniac, she wants to share that part of her life with her good friends.)

It's time to renew my annual donation to provide food for a family in Guatemala.

Funny:  my daughter got on a slime kick.  She tried a few different formulas, and even used her own money to buy shaving cream for the third try.  No luck.  finally she decided to buy some online.  The cost - $1.  I think she has figured out that sometimes it's smarter to just buy ready-made.  ?

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I am holding off buying school stuff because there is a tax holiday the first weekend of August.  I hope it applies to all of our online purchases.

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1 hour ago, SKL said:

I am holding off buying school stuff because there is a tax holiday the first weekend of August.  I hope it applies to all of our online purchases.

Hmm. I have a feeling it would only work on in-store purchases. I apparently have to buy uniform clothing for ds at the public school. I may wait for the tax-free weekend, but the stores are so packed those days I'm not sure if we'll even find the sizes we need. And here it's only a 7% discount. 

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Of course, I could be comparing apples and oranges. Our state does a tax-free weekend for clothing and shoes. Nothing to do with school supplies if that's what you're talking about. 

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Well July isn't going to be the best.  

$400 a/c fix

The kids want to do some more dance intensives.   $$$$$$$  

I think we have only spent $200 on grocery shopping so far. The month is halfway gone.  That is pretty good. 

Still have a ton of snacks for when we are out at classes late

Found a FREE tech camp at the University for 3 of the kids.  It is 2 weeks.  But if they do the intensives they won't be able to go to all of it. 

There is a lot of room in the Apple camps near us.  Going to get signed up.   FREE

They did summer school for 4 weeks.  That was the 4 older ones.  $200  for 4 kids 5 days a week 8-12

Finally got the library for the summer reading program.  Went to a few good programs and also starting the reading program.  Lots of good prizes, tickets to zoos, museums,.......     So I see some more free fun coming our way.    So with dance intensives and free things I think that is how we will spend the rest of summer besides vacation. 

 

 

 

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15 minutes ago, heartlikealion said:

Hmm. I have a feeling it would only work on in-store purchases. I apparently have to buy uniform clothing for ds at the public school. I may wait for the tax-free weekend, but the stores are so packed those days I'm not sure if we'll even find the sizes we need. And here it's only a 7% discount. 

Here it applies to clothes and supplies under a certain $ amount per piece.  I do believe online purchases are included.  Otherwise it would do me little good, as I buy almost all of the stuff online.

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1 hour ago, mommyoffive said:

Well July isn't going to be the best.  

$400 a/c fix

The kids want to do some more dance intensives.   $$$$$$$  

I think we have only spent $200 on grocery shopping so far. The month is halfway gone.  That is pretty good. 

Still have a ton of snacks for when we are out at classes late

Found a FREE tech camp at the University for 3 of the kids.  It is 2 weeks.  But if they do the intensives they won't be able to go to all of it. 

There is a lot of room in the Apple camps near us.  Going to get signed up.   FREE

They did summer school for 4 weeks.  That was the 4 older ones.  $200  for 4 kids 5 days a week 8-12

Finally got the library for the summer reading program.  Went to a few good programs and also starting the reading program.  Lots of good prizes, tickets to zoos, museums,.......     So I see some more free fun coming our way.    So with dance intensives and free things I think that is how we will spend the rest of summer besides vacation. 

Are there still slots for the Apple Camp near you? I think some filled up weeks ago. 

I took the kids to a bowling alley that was participating in a "kids bowl free" program. There's a list online at https://www.kidsbowlfree.com. My sister insisted on paying for the two of us and the shoe rentals. They bowling alley gave us bumpers no charge (which I thought normally cost extra). 

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1 hour ago, heartlikealion said:

Are there still slots for the Apple Camp near you? I think some filled up weeks ago. 

I took the kids to a bowling alley that was participating in a "kids bowl free" program. There's a list online at https://www.kidsbowlfree.com. My sister insisted on paying for the two of us and the shoe rentals. They bowling alley gave us bumpers no charge (which I thought normally cost extra). 

 

Yep all the Apple Camps are open by us.  Just signed them up.  I can take the kid that isn't doing the intensive at the same time.  Perfect.  Then take the other 2 after the intensive and before their other dance class starts. 

I have heard of the bowling. We may go and do that. Thanks. 

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Well, considering I'm trying really hard to cut our budget down again I should join this thread. 

We have been doing ok this year but now we are looking at head gear for one child, car, plumbing (AGAIN) , fence and other home maintenence, possible vision therapy for another kid, and glasses for another one and we don't have money for all of that saved up. Some but yikes, it just keeps coming.

 

My daughter cut all my boys' hair for the first time last night, she had lessons with their previous cut and didn't do too bad so there is a savings.

 

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Spent $50 at the children's resale shop today.  Each kid got two pairs of athletic/sweatpants, DS4 got two pairs of sandals to replace the ones falling apart, and DS9 got a t-shirt and polo shirt.  They should be good on clothes for a while.

Target, ugh.  But I managed to get a new electric griddle for $18.  After the basement is done, we'll be remodeling the kitchen and I'm trying to acquire the things we need to keep meals going when the kitchen is torn apart.  I also picked up about a year's worth of my face scrub (the St. Ives with coffee and coconut... so refreshing first thing in the morning).  It had a Cartwheel discount plus a $5 gift card when you buy 4.  I probably only have $5 worth of school supplies to buy this year, so I can use the gift card for that.

I tried to stop at the used book store, but forgot it was closed today.  I went ahead and used the Prime Day code to buy some of the books I'm assigning DS9 this year, but I'll head back to the used book store later this week to see what else she has.

ETA:  Oh!  And DS8 went to a free STEM camp at the library today, where the topic was his favorite branch of science.  Which is awesome because it is most certainly not my favorite, lol.

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I don’t know if this counts as frugal, but I might have found DS’s stolen bike on Facebook marketplace today, so I took a copy of the posting and the bike’s serial number down to the police station. They are going to look into it. Wouldn’t that be cool to actually FIND your stolen bike. 

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2 hours ago, mommyoffive said:

Isn't their a free summer movie thing too? 

Around here it isn't free but cheap, like $5 and you get popcorn and maybe a soda?

49 minutes ago, BarbecueMom said:

Spent $50 at the children's resale shop today.  Each kid got two pairs of athletic/sweatpants, DS4 got two pairs of sandals to replace the ones falling apart, and DS9 got a t-shirt and polo shirt.  They should be good on clothes for a while.

Target, ugh.  But I managed to get a new electric griddle for $18.  After the basement is done, we'll be remodeling the kitchen and I'm trying to acquire the things we need to keep meals going when the kitchen is torn apart.  I also picked up about a year's worth of my face scrub (the St. Ives with coffee and coconut... so refreshing first thing in the morning).  It had a Cartwheel discount plus a $5 gift card when you buy 4.  I probably only have $5 worth of school supplies to buy this year, so I can use the gift card for that.

I tried to stop at the used book store, but forgot it was closed today.  I went ahead and used the Prime Day code to buy some of the books I'm assigning DS9 this year, but I'll head back to the used book store later this week to see what else she has.

3

Ya for kids clothes and good for getting some books with the code. I need to be brainstorming if I have any books I will need to buy coming up. 

@heartlikealion best wishes for your ds starting school, I really hope it goes well

@SamanthaCarter fingers crossed for you that it is the right bike

 

----------------------------

things are going well here. Groceries are on track, I might try to cut it back more next month, it's gone relatively easy to do $600. We've not eaten out one iota all month, we usually don't but we've had to go out of town, which makes it more challenging but we've planned well. Other than necessities our only expenses have been- $4 batteries for fan remote, school books, Magic Eraser, charcoal, $3 toaster, and $14 of school clothes for ds. I'm pleased with all that. We did have tires to buy but that's life, looks like we are probably going to have some more expenses to fix the problem with tire wear, dh is going to see if he can do it himself but he doesn't think he can. I'd like to be able to do more for the kids but we just can't afford it, 4h has some cool things going on relatively cheap but it just isn't in the budget, it is what it is.

Tonight is Dave Ramsey supper, rice and beans ? black bean quesadillas and taco rice

I'm working on next weeks menu trying to keep it on the cheap!

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We had a pretty cheap dinner, too. Chicken noodle soup mix plus frozen veggies and frozen rotisserie chicken I had in freezer. I plan to buy more rotisserie chicken and ration it out in freezer bags again. 

I was going to grocery shop tomorrow but I think I’ll just buy a few items (like eggs) and we’ll try to stretch a little longer. We are going to the movies tomorrow (Tues is discount day and I’m mostly using fandango credit from my Quaker codes. Dh will use his movie pass and Im not sure how long that extra fee lasts for new releases. New rule). I tried to pay the difference with a fandango gift card but it tried to override our codes and eat almost all the gc! We were supposed to take the kids last week on opening day with my sister and dh but that theater had assigned seats and movie pass people like dh and my sis would not be able to reserve seats early unless they went early in person. It was a mess. We’re seeing Hotel Transylvania 3. 

I’m going to return dd’s uniform clothing for store credit if it works out. Hopefully I can do that before the movie. They have good prices on polos right now and ds needs them for public school. When I placed her order I earned CP rewards and I don’t want to forfeit that. 

For the summer movies, yeah they have some cheap slightly outdated films in summer but I don’t know if we missed the one we wanted to see (Ferdinand). 

——-

ooh I hope the bike is found. You already had a pic of the serial number? That’s smart.

yay for everybody’s wins this month. 

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Handing back in my frugal card for the day... I just bought the Instant Pot.  I don’t need it, but it should come in handy when the kitchen is demolished.  And I’ve been buying yogurt at twice the price of making it myself.  I can make it in the crockpot, but I got lazy.  Or busy.  Or both.

We’ll see, maybe it’ll end up being a somewhat frugal item once I figure it out.

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3 hours ago, SamanthaCarter said:

I don’t know if this counts as frugal, but I might have found DS’s stolen bike on Facebook marketplace today, so I took a copy of the posting and the bike’s serial number down to the police station. They are going to look into it. Wouldn’t that be cool to actually FIND your stolen bike. 

 

Whoa keep up posted.   

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4 hours ago, BarbecueMom said:

Spent $50 at the children's resale shop today.  Each kid got two pairs of athletic/sweatpants, DS4 got two pairs of sandals to replace the ones falling apart, and DS9 got a t-shirt and polo shirt.  They should be good on clothes for a while.

Target, ugh.  But I managed to get a new electric griddle for $18.  After the basement is done, we'll be remodeling the kitchen and I'm trying to acquire the things we need to keep meals going when the kitchen is torn apart.  I also picked up about a year's worth of my face scrub (the St. Ives with coffee and coconut... so refreshing first thing in the morning).  It had a Cartwheel discount plus a $5 gift card when you buy 4.  I probably only have $5 worth of school supplies to buy this year, so I can use the gift card for that.

I tried to stop at the used book store, but forgot it was closed today.  I went ahead and used the Prime Day code to buy some of the books I'm assigning DS9 this year, but I'll head back to the used book store later this week to see what else she has.

ETA:  Oh!  And DS8 went to a free STEM camp at the library today, where the topic was his favorite branch of science.  Which is awesome because it is most certainly not my favorite, lol.

 

You brave woman!  

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1 hour ago, BarbecueMom said:

Handing back in my frugal card for the day... I just bought the Instant Pot.  I don’t need it, but it should come in handy when the kitchen is demolished.  And I’ve been buying yogurt at twice the price of making it myself.  I can make it in the crockpot, but I got lazy.  Or busy.  Or both.

We’ll see, maybe it’ll end up being a somewhat frugal item once I figure it out.

 

I think that is really a frugal thing to do.  I bet it will save you lots of $ on take out and everything.  Sometimes is actually costs money to be frugal, but it ends up paying off in the long run. 

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3 hours ago, soror said:

Around here it isn't free but cheap, like $5 and you get popcorn and maybe a soda?

Ya for kids clothes and good for getting some books with the code. I need to be brainstorming if I have any books I will need to buy coming up. 

@heartlikealion best wishes for your ds starting school, I really hope it goes well

@SamanthaCarter fingers crossed for you that it is the right bike

 

----------------------------

things are going well here. Groceries are on track, I might try to cut it back more next month, it's gone relatively easy to do $600. We've not eaten out one iota all month, we usually don't but we've had to go out of town, which makes it more challenging but we've planned well. Other than necessities our only expenses have been- $4 batteries for fan remote, school books, Magic Eraser, charcoal, $3 toaster, and $14 of school clothes for ds. I'm pleased with all that. We did have tires to buy but that's life, looks like we are probably going to have some more expenses to fix the problem with tire wear, dh is going to see if he can do it himself but he doesn't think he can. I'd like to be able to do more for the kids but we just can't afford it, 4h has some cool things going on relatively cheap but it just isn't in the budget, it is what it is.

Tonight is Dave Ramsey supper, rice and beans ? black bean quesadillas and taco rice

I'm working on next weeks menu trying to keep it on the cheap!

 

Great job!! 

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8 hours ago, BarbecueMom said:

Handing back in my frugal card for the day... I just bought the Instant Pot.  I don’t need it, but it should come in handy when the kitchen is demolished.  And I’ve been buying yogurt at twice the price of making it myself.  I can make it in the crockpot, but I got lazy.  Or busy.  Or both.

We’ll see, maybe it’ll end up being a somewhat frugal item once I figure it out.

I use mine all the time. I just used it last night to make dried beans, you don't have to even remember to soak them and they cook in 30ish minutes. It totally helps with getting meals done when you're in a rush. Great plan about yogurt too, I've not made any in awhile (I've been lazy or busy or both too ?

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I'm going to register ds at the public school today and pick up his supply list. Thinking about the timeline I have in mind for dd and her interest in school, I guess that means we'll be doing PreK this year (not like rigid seat work, but I'll go over days of the week and such). I signed up on this link for the Target teacher discount this week just in case. https://www.target.com/c/teacher-verification/-/N-fhrde?lnk=Teacherssave15o

I used a Homeschool buyer's co-op ID card for the application. They emailed me a coupon.

I was going to get a long overdue haircut tonight, but between the time dh gets off work and we go to the movie I don't think there's time if I want to return dd's uniform clothing so I told him maybe I can drop him off for his haircut and then take the kids with me to the mall with the clothes. I would leave earlier to go to the city, but I'm trying to avoid us having to use two cars to see a movie together. I've checked like 4 websites and right now Children's Place is beating everyone on the prices for the polo shirts so I think that's my best bet. I'm going to look at Goodwill for the khaki shorts if I have a chance. 

 

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I used that Lowe's discount code for a hose. Thanks! Yesterday they canceled my order after a discrepancy about the inventory. Today I called and had them check the stock on shelf and we found a similar hose, for less. I placed my order through ebates and will pick it up after the movie as Lowe's is by our theater. TopCashBack and ebates have the same cash back percent right now but I need more points on ebates to have a chance to earn a cashout the next period. If I don't meet the min. maybe it rolls over the next payout period. Operation get the backyard fixed up for the kids is under way lol

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21 hours ago, SKL said:

Here it applies to clothes and supplies under a certain $ amount per piece.  I do believe online purchases are included.  Otherwise it would do me little good, as I buy almost all of the stuff online.

Same here on clothes & supplies.  I'm the past I have done it online and gotten it tax free.

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Hope they get your bike back!

YAY for all the frugal wins.

Losses -- don't stress just think about something good and move on.

Kinda a loss kinda a win - Went out to eat with friends -spent a little money (loss).  The downtime and relaxation with these ladies (win)

I have a bunch of math curriculum I am trying to sell cheap.  Thought I had a buyer but she backed out.I

Wins -- home all weekend (no spending),  sweet friends gave us a bunch of garden surplus & some books I had in hold (online library) came in...free entertainment!

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Took the kids for registration. Ds asked to walk around the building as he'd never been there. Turns out his grade switches classes 7 times a day. I said 7 subjects?? but then I realized one of them is called "intervention period"?? for working on whatever a child may need help on. I don't know what to make of that. I asked about snack and recess and there is no official recess. Once or twice a week the kids his age get PE in the gym. Well, considering ds' allergies and how easily he overheats I guess that could be considered a win... but I don't like the idea of no recess the rest of the week. It's the last period of the day, too which seems weird to me. I mean, isn't the point to break up the day?? Ah I guess he can get all sweaty at the end of the day and shower after school lol. As for snack she said there is none and I turned to him and said, "you better eat all your lunch. You may get hungry." The principal is new to this particular school so she's not the one I'd met before. She said most kids eat breakfast and lunch at the school. Then I started asking ques. about breakfast time and when bus drop off is. Turns out due to a grant I think she said, all students there receive free breakfast. I thought whoa! Sad that it's such a poor area, but nice that ds can just hop on the bus and eat when he arrives if he wants. He's not a morning person. Long story short I thought we might save money on food if he's eating a free breakfast. I will probably do a combination of packed lunches and cafeteria food, depending on if he's really wanting something they have there. Mostly packed food probably. Of course the yellow school bus is free too so I'm thinking a win on gas. He'll be heading to the bus stop around the time dh goes to work so maybe they could leave the house together and/or he could meet the neighbor at her driveway and walk the rest of the way with those siblings. I found out that one of the neighbors is going into the same grade as him. They might even end up in the same classroom, who knows.

ETA: they rotate between PE and two other things. I know one is library.

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Got the news from my realtor that the mortgage company has to push closing back by 3 weeks! I'm so frustrated that I decided I'm not making dinner and instead ordered pizza. frugal fail but I don't care. I'm too annoyed to care. both agents are pushing the mortgage company to get their crap together.  

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"Spend now to save later" kind of day today.  The previous owners of our house replaced all of the exterior doors except one, and all of the windows except the basement, a few months before we moved in.  We finally had those replaced today.  I'm already noticing the a/c running less frequently, despite it being over 90 degrees outside, so hopefully this will lower our electric bill a bit.  We're also replacing the weatherstripping around the garage door and the front door.

1 hour ago, heartlikealion said:

Took the kids for registration. Ds asked to walk around the building as he'd never been there. Turns out his grade switches classes 7 times a day. I said 7 subjects?? but then I realized one of them is called "intervention period"?? for working on whatever a child may need help on. I don't know what to make of that. I asked about snack and recess and there is no official recess. Once or twice a week the kids his age get PE in the gym. Well, considering ds' allergies and how easily he overheats I guess that could be considered a win... but I don't like the idea of no recess the rest of the week. It's the last period of the day, too which seems weird to me. I mean, isn't the point to break up the day?? Ah I guess he can get all sweaty at the end of the day and shower after school lol. As for snack she said there is none and I turned to him and said, "you better eat all your lunch. You may get hungry." The principal is new to this particular school so she's not the one I'd met before. She said most kids eat breakfast and lunch at the school. Then I started asking ques. about breakfast time and when bus drop off is. Turns out due to a grant I think she said, all students there receive free breakfast. I thought whoa! Sad that it's such a poor area, but nice that ds can just hop on the bus and eat when he arrives if he wants. He's not a morning person. Long story short I thought we might save money on food if he's eating a free breakfast. I will probably do a combination of packed lunches and cafeteria food, depending on if he's really wanting something they have there. Mostly packed food probably. Of course the yellow school bus is free too so I'm thinking a win on gas. He'll be heading to the bus stop around the time dh goes to work so maybe they could leave the house together and/or he could meet the neighbor at her driveway and walk the rest of the way with those siblings. I found out that one of the neighbors is going into the same grade as him. They might even end up in the same classroom, who knows.

ETA: they rotate between PE and two other things. I know one is library.

I just want to say you are doing awesome!  You've made some hard choices lately and plowed through a lot of advice and kept your head up (at least from what I can tell on this end of the Internet!).  <insert the cheering, clapping smiley that disappeared in boardmageddon>

Free breakfast and lowering gas usage will help quite a bit, so long as the breakfast choices are workable.  I've heard horror stories about pop tarts and sweetened juice in school breakfasts, although I'd hope with grant stipulations they have better options!

1 hour ago, hjffkj said:

Got the news from my realtor that the mortgage company has to push closing back by 3 weeks! I'm so frustrated that I decided I'm not making dinner and instead ordered pizza. frugal fail but I don't care. I'm too annoyed to care. both agents are pushing the mortgage company to get their crap together.  

That's frustrating.  I hated the stressful process of buying a house way more than I thought I would, and someone will probably have to drag me out of this one because I really don't want to experience it from the selling side.

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18 minutes ago, BarbecueMom said:

That's frustrating.  I hated the stressful process of buying a house way more than I thought I would, and someone will probably have to drag me out of this one because I really don't want to experience it from the selling side.

 

We really lucked out when our house went on the market since it wasn't on for more than a day, so the stress hasn't been too bad up until now. I'm just ready to move on and we were all set to be done on friday, now we can't be.  Now I have to stress for 3 weeks that they'll try to pull this again as the new closing date approaches. My realtor and I have already agreed that if that happens again we will walk away from the deal. It will suck for the buyer but I can't have a mortgage company stringing us along.  I am so pissed right now.

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Heartlikealion - sounds like the school will have its ups and downs, but nothing not workable, at least for a bit!

 

I am so tired today.  I left my recipe card at the grocery store when I shopped this weekend and it wasn't turned into the lost and found.  I took out the ingredients for tonight's dinner and....well, it wasn't what I planned, but it turned out pretty good after all. At least the ingredients didn't go to waste.  Except the kale.  I'm not the biggest fan so I switched out another green we had in the fridge.
Ds is finally learning how to swim. He has been reluctant for years. I signed him up at the rec center when they opened the registration in May for this month's class.  3x a week, 3 weeks, $40.  It was a lot better than many of the other prices around here!  And then I heard a bunch of negative reviews, which made me wonder if it would be wasted money.  He's done 4 lessons and is floating, being comfortable, and doggy paddling.  It's a pretty small class, too, with very sweet teachers.  If nothing else, he'll come out of this summer without wanting floaties on all the time. ?

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16 hours ago, BarbecueMom said:

"Spend now to save later" kind of day today.  The previous owners of our house replaced all of the exterior doors except one, and all of the windows except the basement, a few months before we moved in.  We finally had those replaced today.  I'm already noticing the a/c running less frequently, despite it being over 90 degrees outside, so hopefully this will lower our electric bill a bit.  We're also replacing the weatherstripping around the garage door and the front door.

I just want to say you are doing awesome!  You've made some hard choices lately and plowed through a lot of advice and kept your head up (at least from what I can tell on this end of the Internet!).  <insert the cheering, clapping smiley that disappeared in boardmageddon>

Free breakfast and lowering gas usage will help quite a bit, so long as the breakfast choices are workable.  I've heard horror stories about pop tarts and sweetened juice in school breakfasts, although I'd hope with grant stipulations they have better options!

That's frustrating.  I hated the stressful process of buying a house way more than I thought I would, and someone will probably have to drag me out of this one because I really don't want to experience it from the selling side.

Thank you. I actually asked about the menu! They do have pop tarts and cereal but also have a pizza with sausage and egg, sometimes oatmeal (he won't eat that) and I think sometimes grits. They also mentioned cereal bars. I don't know how much it rotates but I'm thinking he'd eat the pizza thing and if necessary I could send him a banana or something to eat. It's hard to get him to eat in the morning, but I think he needs the fuel. When the bus arrives they all go straight to the cafeteria I think. He'll have approx. 30 min. before school starts. Also, if I heard correctly, he's one of the last stops in the morning and one of the first stops to get home in the afternoon. I told him maybe we could have him meet the siblings from school on their driveway and walk the remainder of the way to the bus stop with them. It's not that he can't walk alone per se, but because he'd have to walk across a street and parking lot with young teen drivers on campus. It's not far, though and it's within the boundaries of where campus police work.

I successfully returned dd's bottoms (I don't have the tops as the women that was going to monogram is out of town but she'll return them) and asked for store credit so I wouldn't jeopardize my $5 rewards on my account. The manager told the cashier to not even link it to my account and just give me the value on my gift card. It worked out perfectly. Then since the store didn't have the same sale prices I came home and ordered his tops (a whole 5, one for each week day) and a pack of underwear lol. I still have a few bucks left on the card, plus another $5 credit that activates in the near future and I earned $10 off $20 in PLACE cash. I won't buy his bottoms from there (they aren't what we're looking for) but will get a refund at Walmart and use that money toward the bottoms, from any store of my choice.

So we found out AFTER registration that apparently there is another elem. that is "better" in a nearby town that he also qualified to enroll in but whatever, what's done is done. I like having him not on the bus as long and I've been inside this school a few times. They are hiring a couple positions and dh and I talked about it but I don't want to apply. He was urging me to work and put dd in daycare, but I am listening to my gut. I am staying home with dd and if ds needs to be withdrawn I'll be around. Plus I really want her on track to start K at age 5. She can't do that if she goes to public. And with her personality, I don't want her to wait.

 

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18 hours ago, heartlikealion said:

Took the kids for registration. Ds asked to walk around the building as he'd never been there. Turns out his grade switches classes 7 times a day. I said 7 subjects?? but then I realized one of them is called "intervention period"?? for working on whatever a child may need help on. I don't know what to make of that. I asked about snack and recess and there is no official recess. Once or twice a week the kids his age get PE in the gym. Well, considering ds' allergies and how easily he overheats I guess that could be considered a win... but I don't like the idea of no recess the rest of the week. It's the last period of the day, too which seems weird to me. I mean, isn't the point to break up the day?? Ah I guess he can get all sweaty at the end of the day and shower after school lol. As for snack she said there is none and I turned to him and said, "you better eat all your lunch. You may get hungry." The principal is new to this particular school so she's not the one I'd met before. She said most kids eat breakfast and lunch at the school. Then I started asking ques. about breakfast time and when bus drop off is. Turns out due to a grant I think she said, all students there receive free breakfast. I thought whoa! Sad that it's such a poor area, but nice that ds can just hop on the bus and eat when he arrives if he wants. He's not a morning person. Long story short I thought we might save money on food if he's eating a free breakfast. I will probably do a combination of packed lunches and cafeteria food, depending on if he's really wanting something they have there. Mostly packed food probably. Of course the yellow school bus is free too so I'm thinking a win on gas. He'll be heading to the bus stop around the time dh goes to work so maybe they could leave the house together and/or he could meet the neighbor at her driveway and walk the rest of the way with those siblings. I found out that one of the neighbors is going into the same grade as him. They might even end up in the same classroom, who knows.

ETA: they rotate between PE and two other things. I know one is library.

Just want to say that it's probably a good thing that they have 7 transitions throughout the school day.  Every chance to get up and move around is good for the kids.  They might also have some chill / movement time worked into some of the classes.  For example, reading classes in elementary often have times for kids to lounge around on comfy furniture, visit with friends, and generally chill during silent reading.

While you may not like the school food options, it can be a relief to know you can fall back on them when you need to.  I packed until my kids were in 4th grade IIRC, but as they got older, they ate less of what I packed and the school lunches looked better and better in comparison to the fuss and waste of packing.

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