Well, week three is behind me and the toughest week is ahead of me. Had I not done this when there are so many sales and whatnot, it probably wouldn’t be that hard at all. We’ll just have to see what I can’t live without come Friday. Let’s recap week three, shall we?
I finally did it. I broke into my “fun money” stash. I thought to myself, “Self, it’s my birthday and I deserve something nice.” I bought a $12 car wash and cleaned all the grime off my car that had been there for far too long then vacuumed the dog hair and sawdust out of it. What a way to spend a birthday! Ha! I also bought a piece of equipment for the job job but I’m on the fence about including that in the fun money category. It was something I needed but I didn’t allow for any job job purchases in my initial rules (mostly because I did not expect any). So, I decided that I would call it a birthday gift from my grandma because she sent me a check for the same amount of what I ordered. Hey, it’s my game and I make the rules fit however I need. Hahahaha!
Honestly, I’m really trying to abide by these rules. I’ve seen some emails and flyers for the upcoming sales that have peaked my interest and I’m fully aware that I may go over my “fun money” budget. Actually, change that may to a most likely. That’s better. But the items that I’m looking at are for 7MD. While I think that wood and tools are fun, it’s still a business related expense and not what most people would consider a “fun” purchase. Given that I know I’m likely to go over, I’m not going to throw the month away and go spending crazy. I mean, I’ve made it three weeks and managed to significantly reduce the amount of money I’ve spent during the month. So, yeah, winning.
Finally, let’s see how the food budget is going. Pretty well! I’ve been trying to build menus that utilize the food I already have in the pantry and freezer instead of making up ideas that require me to buy more stuff at the store. I may come up with the crazy concoctions but it’s actually a bigger relief than you might think to clear out some of the food clutter. I’ve been going to the grocery store each week to pick up a few things here and there and I’ve found that I actually have a hard time coming up with more than a couple things to buy. This is something I really hope to carry over after this month is over because I can get carried away at the grocery store and there is really no reason for it. Oh, I’ve also learned that Great Value potato chips have sooo much more flavor than Lay’s or Ruffles. I’m a potato chip fiend and Sour Cream and Onion is my weakness. I don’t think I can ever go back to name brand chips. I did run to the store today and spent a whopping $49 which brings my food budget to $135 spent. I would drop that amount and then some weekly. Ridiculous, right?
I had hoped to work on some projects over the last week that utilized stuff I already have so that I didn’t have to spend any money on supplies. I had some cool stuff planned. But life and work happened and I just didn’t have time. All of my shop time was spent working on custom orders but I will be sharing what I have worked on this month with you next week as I wrap everything up. Since I couldn’t make my own projects, I decided to share with you some scrap wood projects from some of my friends that are way better than anything I could have done.
- DIY Stackable Salt Cellar by 3×3 Custom
If you’ve never heard of Tamar from 3×3 Custom, you’re seriously missing out. She always puts out the best projects, including these stackable salt cellars she made from scraps. Just imagine how great these would look in your kitchen or on your table for the holidays. This is a project I’m definitely wanting to try myself.
- DIY Modern Christmas Ornament Signs by Woodshop Diaries
Shara from Woodshop Diaries is also someone to keep an eye one. Her projects are incredible and I’m even lucky enough to have one of them in my home. These ornament signs are a good beginner woodworker project because they don’t require a ton of skill or tools. And there are tons of décor options so don’t feel like you’re stuck with Christmas designs. Think other seasons and holidays, monograms, pets… The possibilities stretch as far as your imagination or ability to google.
- Self Watering Herb Planter by Lazy Guy DIY
Adam at Lazy Guy DIY comes up with some pretty dang cool projects for being a lazy guy. He’s got a fun personality that really comes through in his writing. He shared how to build the herb planter using empty wine bottles and scrap or pallet wood. It’s a cute way to grow your own fresh herbs right in your kitchen or would make a great gift for someone.
- DIY Chalkboard Countdown Calendar Blocks by Build and Create Home
If you want to follow a great account that will constantly make you jealous, follow Charlee from Build and Create Home. The woman is an incredible builder, home renovator, and she lives in Hawaii. She’s also one of the sweetest people you’ll meet. Her countdown calendar blocks are a super simple build using scraps, even for a beginner. And they can be used year round for a ton of different occasions.
- Easy DIY Couch Table by Overalls and Power Saws
Britt at Overalls and Power Saws is just the cutest little thing with some of the coolest builds. She whipped up this little couch table out of scrap wood as a project between projects. I really wanted a table like this but it wouldn’t fit under the couch because of the built in recliners. Whomp, whomp. But if it fits under yours, you should DEFINITELY give it a try!
If you want more ideas, you can search Instagram for the hashtag #50fornothing. I have been participating in a challenge of sorts where you make 50 things throughout the year that don’t cost anything. It could be something as simple as taking leftovers and making a new meal out of them. I have focused on woodworking projects because that’s what my account revolves around but there are lots of good ideas to get your imagination going from some other makers. Don’t forget Pinterest! There are more ideas there than can ever be made by one person.
And that’s all I have for you all this week! Enjoy your Thanksgiving if you celebrate it, stay safe during any holiday shopping, and may your holiday season be relaxed. I’ll be back to check in with you next week!
If you missed the other installments of the No Spend Month, you can check them out here.