2014 No Spend Challenge Kick-Off

No spend challenge kick-offWe are overjoyed with the amount of participation we are receiving for our 90 day No Spend Challenge. I am extremely excited to see how the Lord is going to work in each and every one of your family’s lives! Today is the official day we begin the challenge. I thought I’d kick-off the event with an update on how our family is beginning the challenge.

I must admit, I love a good ‘underdog’ story. You know the ones where the main character spends the entire story fighting their way to victory. Well, I have to say it appears that our family is starting out this challenge, not exactly in the best position. I feel like we are the official underdogs, with all the odds stacked against us. I do not fear, it just means we are really going to have to buckle down and stay focused.

Last week our family suffered through another bout of the stomach virus. It was awful and was only magnified by the fact that we are down to one toilet (yeh, talk about fun!) Even though the challenge hadn’t yet started I was already phasing into my No Spend Challenge way of thinking. Thankfully, we did not buy take-out, but we did purchase a few “ready-made” meals at the grocery store, which wasn’t too great for the grocery budget. But, we had to eat, and I was in no position to cook. This is when it would have been very prudent of me to have a few freezer meals available, making a note of that!

To add to our ‘underdog’ story, we started the year off with my husband’s first check being very low. Further constricting our savings plan, my husband worked five fewer hours last week on account of our illness. Meaning, his next check is not going to be all that great either (sigh). That’s okay, on an upside I receive a weekly allowance of $20 cash and I have already put back $50 from that weekly allotment. I usually spend the money on odds and ends so I don’t have to use my debit card or write a check. Sometimes I will just put it towards our weekly grocery bill. But, through this challenge I am going to purpose to save it as well.

Today is a rainy day, but I hung two loads of laundry throughout my house to dry in lieu of using my electric dryer. I realize I am not going to save much by doing this, but even if it is a few dollars, it is a little something I can do to save money. Every penny adds up. Frugality is a continuous way of thinking, not a once-in-a-blue-moon effort. I am excited to do whatever I can to help our family save the money we need.

Finally, I have evaluated a few big-ticket items I think I can sell to try to add to our savings. I’m not sure if I will be able to sell them, but I am going to pray, and maybe the Lord will open a door for me to sell them and enable me to contribute to our savings through yet another outlet. Who doesn’t love a little extra cash and the added bonus of decluttering a few unused items?!

We are only at the start of the No Spend Challenge, but I know the Lord has great things in store! I truly believe we all can be better stewards of the money God has given us. Be purposeful with your spending. Don’t forget to look for items you might could sell to earn a little extra cash for your savings. We invite you to share how your no-spend challenge is progressing in the comments below. Please, keep me accountable!

With Love,

Jennifer

5 thoughts on “2014 No Spend Challenge Kick-Off

  1. Sarah

    Our efforts at lowering our spending are always met with difficulties. I think Satan loves to have us tied to our financial state and always worrying, so I try not to, but that’s not always easy! In the last week, we’ve spent over $3000!!!! We had to replace the transmission in our only vehicle….our 12 passenger van. Oh well. I suppose I should be thankful that we haven’t had the van at home for several days which means we haven’t spent anything since we can’t leave the house! :-) There’s an upside to everything! Thanks so much for being transparent with us as your readers… you are an encouragement!

    1. Jennifer Williams Post author

      I am so sorry! Yes, I agree Satan is always working behind the scenes trying to get us to succumb to his fears and schemes. Press on my dear friend, you are not alone. Thanks for sharing, despite your challenges, your story encourages me and I truly hope your family is not faced with anymore financial setbacks. :)
      ~ Jennifer

  2. Karyn

    I started the challenge when you first posted it and have decided to go month by month, partly because we get paid once a month and partly because I’m not organized enough to plan for 90 days!

    Successes: 1. I’ve gotten back on track doing frugal things like using the woodstove more, line drying clothes, and using family cloths. I had let these go during my first trimester blahs. 2. I’ve cut down on small impulse purchases. 3. I’m using up food from the pantry and chest freezers, which will allow me to reorganize better. I have a habit of buying things on sale (great) but not using them up.

    To work on: 1. We’re getting less take-out food but it’s still a habit that’s really hard for me to kick. I don’t think it’s even just about the convenience; it’s almost like eating out is entertainment and something to look forward to. I don’t go to malls or use facebook or watch much television – it’s almost like eating is my “reward”. Sigh. Much prayer needed. 2. The bills I was calculating are a bit bigger than I anticipated. Bummer.

    Thanks for hosting this challenge and I hope you guys are all feeling back to normal!

    1. Jennifer Williams Post author

      Thanks for giving an update! Sounds like you are working hard to become more frugal. I hope the Lord continues to bless your efforts. :)
      ~Jennifer

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