New Year.

I really stink at keeping up with my blog. I want to use this tool regularly this year to share with you a little bit of my life and my businesses!

With the changes in our taxes this year...the possibility of me changing jobs (hopefully)...my husband and I are trying REAL hard to cut back wherever possible so we can go after our debt hardcore and also build up our savings. We have a goal of eventually having 6 months worth of income in savings...we currently have about 2 weeks of income in savings. Ouch. So what are we doing?

1. We are refinancing our car loan. It is saving us approximately $25 a month and over $1000 on the total loan.
2. The government claims that the average grocery bill per person in the US is $100. So, that means we should only be spending $200 a month on groceries. Some people include things like soap, toiletries, etc into this category. I have found a blog that gave a great idea on keeping track of your spending each WEEK on food to keep you on track. You can see what I'm talking about here.
3. While sticking to our grocery budget I want to buy foods that are environmentally responsible (grass fed beef, cage free/antibiotic free chicken and eggs, organic dairy products, etc.) and buy less and less packaged and processed foods. This will be tough, but I am a firm believe that if we fill our bodies with REAL food we will be healthier and stronger and save on medical bills!
4. I'm looking into making my own laundry soap, dish soap, and other around the house cleaners to cut back on these minor expenses.
5. We are an iPhone family. Scott is in the film industry and needs to be able to stay on top of e-mails, contacts, etc. I run 2 etsy shops and find it easiest to be able to respond to my customers almost immediately. Scott's job said that they were going to pay for his phone...we just haven't really figured that out yet. I want to push this because this could save us anywhere from $80-100 a month! NICE! Plus this would be in the first half of the month where our bills are heaviest due to rent.
6. We plan on resigning our lease at our apartment. We live in a really nice neighborhood, surrounded by large, mansion-like homes. We, however, live in a small, wood paneling, out of date electrical one bedroom apartment. Really not our ideal place, but it's affordable and in a safe area. We have done some repairs and updates of our own to make it fit us a little better. This place helps us keep on track with our monthly budget.

What sort of money saving tips does your family do? What do you recommend? I would love to hear your secrets!

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