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Archive for November, 2021

Thanksgiving Update and Some $Deals$

November 28th, 2021 at 02:59 pm

I hope everyone had a Happy Thanksgiving! I celebrated with my family at my brother’s house. There were 10 of us total and we had a fantastic time with lots of food and laughs and football watching afterward. It was so nice to have everyone together again after last year, when there were only a few of us.  Lot’s to be thankful for! 


I am mostly finished with my Christmas shopping; I only need to pick up a gift card and a doggie toy for my niece's fur baby. I started wrapping yesterday and today I will start to decorate. I always host on Christmas Eve with a full dinner and then we open gifts. I’m looking forward to having everyone over this year. 


I went to CVS this morning to pick up some TP as part of a spend $30 get $10 CVS Extra Bucks back deal. But they were completely out of the TP. Since the sale just started this morning and I got there really early I asked the manager if maybe they just hadn’t put it out yet, and she said that they never received the order to stock the store. She said they have been experiencing supply chain issues like this for a while now on a variety of productsbut especially on paper products. Just something to be aware of.  


While I was there, I did the toothpaste deal that they have been running almost every other week, buy 2 for $7.98 and use the $7.98 off 2 CVS app coupon so these were free. I have enough toothpaste stocked up so I will give these to BFF.  I also bought 2 boxes of candy, a Whitman sampler, and a Russel Stover sampler. These were buy 1 get one free. I paid using my $10 Carepass Extra Bucks so I only paid .48 cents for tax. I give these for Christmas gifts.   


The senior center gave out a really nice Thanksgiving food box last week. I received a 15 lb. frozen turkey, potatoes, sweet potatoes, gravy mix, stuffing mix, cranberry sauce, etc. Really everything for a standard Thanksgiving dinner. Since I already have the free turkey from the Weis grocery store points giveaway, I gave this turkey and some of the other items to my elderly neighbors. They are a sweet couple in their late 70’s who I check in on every so often. They don’t have any family close by, their daughter lives about a 3-hour drive away. Miss D reminds me of my mom and I enjoy her stories and lovely kind nature. It’s a pleasure to help them out here and there. 


The weather here on the east coast has been cold and windy the past couple of days and I even saw some brief snow flurries last night. Today is sunny and a bit warmer. Well, it’s time for me to get to decorating!  

Free Turkey!

November 5th, 2021 at 02:05 pm

I went to my Weis grocery store and picked up my free turkey! I got a 19-pound Weis brand frozen turkey that according to my receipt would have totaled $31.48. I redeemed my 400 club card points to get this for free. I did this deal last year and even though this is a store brand turkey, it was delicious. I will prepare this for Christmas Eve dinner when I host my family for the holiday. This will be a huge help with keeping my Christmas food budget reasonable.  


I also received my November senior center food distribution. I won’t continue to do a full list but here were some of the highlights: 


2 pounds of ground meat 

I pound of bacon (I can’t remember the last time I bought bacon, such a treat!) 

1 pack of hotdogs 

pack of chicken thighs 


Fresh produce (first time receiving fresh produce) 

4 sweet potatoes 

5 russet potatoes 

3 apples 

2 oranges 

3 white onions 


I also received a dozen eggs, a half-gallon of milk, 2 loaves of bread, and a variety of other baked goods. Also included were a bunch of canned goods, cereal, and pasta, pasta sauce etc. As always, I share this with my family. 


I went to CVS and used up some extra bucks that were getting ready to expire. I bought 3, 12 packs of soda to have on hand for when my family comes over for Sunday football watching. The sale was buy 2, get 1 free.  After using the extra bucks this was free, I only spent .30 cents on tax. I don’t drink much soda, though I will have a diet coke now and then so this will last a while. I also ordered some CVS brand, gallon sized freezer bags (18 count). After using extra bucks, and having free shipping through CVS CarePass, I paid .94 cents for these, including tax. I’m going to need these to freeze all that turkey after it’s cooked! 


In other news, my dental issue is still not over. I now need a root canal (same tooth,) and developed an infection that required antibiotics. Sigh. When everything is finished, I will tally up the final out of pocket expense. Even with dental insurance I’m still looking at over $1000 out of pocket. That includes a crown, which are crazy expensive. Thankfully, I have a healthy savings account to cover these kinds of expenses.  


And finally, the heat is on! It got really cold, really fast here in Maryland. I had to turn on the heat. I keep it set at 68 degrees during the day, and with a sweater on that is comfortable for me. I turn it down to 66 degrees at night. I sleep better when its cooler.  


Have a great weekend everyone! 

October 2021 Spending/Saving

November 1st, 2021 at 09:23 pm

Income Total$1405.00

     * $1200 Recurring monthly retirement account distribution  

     * $200 Swagbucks and My Points earnings (cash out to PayPal

     * $5 Amazon credit through Swagbucks for a product review


Total Spending: $1222.79

Total Savings$182.21 (difference between monthly income and monthly spending) 
Fixed Expenses: 
Verizon bundle (internet, cable, home phone): $170.57

Cell phone: $59.90
HVAC and water heater contract: $29.95 
Condo Fee (includes water) $190.00 

Health Care: (includes health, dental, vision, prescription plans) $476.37 
Utilities: $82.56
Gasoline: $0
Groceries: $69.33
Health: $24.99 (co-pays, scripts refillsvitamins and personal health care items) 
Take Out and Dining Out: $13.56 (my share of cost of pizza for football gathering)

Shopping and Other Spending $105.56 ($47.69 was a Christmas gift, the rest was clothes)



* Condo is paid in full 
* Car is paid in full (2017 Camry) 
* No other debt  


Notes: The monthly food distribution I receive from the senior center has had a significant impact on my grocery spending. And, probably $20 of what I spent was on food for the family when they come over for football sundays (snacks and drinks). 


I am very happy that I was still able to save something with my lower monthly income ($1500 down to $1200 from my retirement distribution)