Menu Plan Monday (And Some Thoughts on Money)

We did really well last week with not spending much on groceries. We’re going to try to continue the trend for the upcoming week.

So I’ve been thinking and thinking about how to manage getting unstuck. How to keep track, how to measure success. What does being unstuck mean to us?

Here’s what I came up with:

  • Being unstuck means that we can move away from where live now with confidence and security. That means:
  • Getting out of debt (about $10,000)
  • Having $10,000 in savings to fund the move, and to give us a cushion while we look for work
  • Being unstuck also means the least amount of outside-the-home work as possible. For both of us. That means:
  • Earning at $2500 per month from other sources. It’s possible we’ll need less to live on, once we’re out of debt. But we can be comfortable on $2500 per month.

So here’s the plan. We have a Paypal account. My freelance writing jobs, plus whatever we make from the Etsy store, funnels into that account. We’ll leave that money in there starting in March and let it build up until the end of the month. (With the exception of business expenses, like shipping. Customers pay their shipping fees into that account as well. After the item is shipped, we refund overage. All of that has to come out of the Paypal account.)

At the end of the month that money will go to pay off debt more quickly. We have been working with Freedom Debt for over a year. I called last week, because we had just about decided to cancel with them. But I was told that we’d just made our last payment where most of it went to pay our fee to them, and now all the money will build up to our account. When enough is in there, they’ll negotiate a pay off of each debt in turn. So we’ll send what’s in the Paypal account to add to the monthly payment they already take out. That should get us out of the majority of our debt (some medical bills aren’t connected to them) in six months or so. Then another few months to pay off everything else. And then the Paypal account will house our savings.

Sounds reasonable right?

I wish I wasn’t so notorious for big plans that get out of hand.

Okay…here’s what’s on the menu for this week:

  • Roasted chicken and potatoes with mustard greens
  • Sauteed spinach with feta cheese, walnuts, and dried cranberries over brown rice. (yum…this one is delicious. I’ll post a recipe.) Served with left over chicken.
  • Oven-baked fish, potatoes, and Brussel’s sprouts. (Super simple and very good. I’ll get a recipe up for this, too.)
  • Chicken Enchilada Bake
  • Poor Man’s Meal with gravy (thank you to the reader who posted that scrumptious idea. I’m so excited!)
  • A couple of left over/pantry nights.

More Menu Plan Monday here.



Filed under body, mind

2 responses to “Menu Plan Monday (And Some Thoughts on Money)

  1. Penny Saver

    After a fairly dramatic pay cut last year, we discovered that we could make ends just barely meet at $1500 a month, plus food stamps, so $1900 a month if we’re doing it all on our own. But that leaves no wiggle room, no entertainment, no money to make life fun. I think $2500 is about right for our family for a comfortable life (assuming debt free) – basics are met and a few extras now and then so we don’t feel deprived. I think finding ways to meet that from home is fantastic!

    Have you tried mystery shopping? I’ve been doing well with that. I am also waiting to hear back about helping at a booth at the farmer’s market one morning a week – a little cash and whatever free, local, organic veggies I want at the end of the day. It’s out of the house, but that might be something to look at if only for the abundance of awesome veggies!

    Looking forward to your spinach, feta, and walnut over rice recipe. Yum!

    • Oh wow…I would jump on that farmer’s market thing. Free food makes me giggly. I wish, wish, wish we had a decent farmer’s market here. We have a tiny one that runs from August to October where basically people sell apples from their front yard trees for like $4 a pound. Pfft.

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