Home > September Recap and My Cheap Vacation

September Recap and My Cheap Vacation

October 11th, 2015 at 01:47 pm

September was a good month -- only 73% of my variables spent. Which is good, since October certainly won't be like that!

Housing - 677
Utilities - 146
Groceries - 130
Gifts/Charity - 98
Vacation/Travel - 94
Car Repair/Maintenance - 70
Personal - 53
Phone - 51
Entertainment - 42
Household Supplies - 40
Vet/Pet Supplies - 35
Eating Out - 25
Medical/Health - 20
Furnishings/Equipment/Décor - 13
Clothing/Accessories - 12
Laundry - 12
Fares/Parking - 10
Grand Total - 1528

Now, here are more details about why my vacation was so cheap. First of all, gas prices were low, especially in the South. They hovered around $2 a gallon. I never drove very fast, and I didn't have to use the air conditioning very much, as the weather was mostly perfect. I took along a cooler of food from home and did not buy any meals on the way down. I did buy coffee a few times. (I brought coffee, too, but it ran out fast.) My meals on the way back were economical -- a child's vegetable platter at Cracker Barrel, breakfast from the dollar menu at McDonalds, and my stop at Popeye's Chicken -- where I only bought onion rings, having a craving for something hot and salty -- netted me free ice tea and an apple pie, because my order got lost.

I only spent two nights in a hotel. I picked Choice hotels so I could earn a third free night to use later. Each of those rooms cost around $80, but I will get $100 back from BOA because of travel points I earned.

My kids bought most of the food for the week. I bought one lunch for myself at Jason's Deli and I contributed $20 toward pizza one night. Our activities were kid-centered and simple, so there wasn't much expenditure there.

I entertained myself on the trip with audiobooks from the library.

My goal was to beat the cost of an airline ticket and car rental, and I think I did it!

Today will be low-key. I'm going to walk to the store to get quarters. I'm going to drive to the downtown library to return my audiobooks. I think there may be a soccer game, and, if my kids agree to it, I'm going to take them out for Chinese tonight in thanks for watching my cat and fish.

Today's menu:

Breakfast: Egg casserole, stewed apples
Lunch: Rice pancakes, sausage
Dinner: Chinese?

5 Responses to “September Recap and My Cheap Vacation”

  1. My English Castle Says:

    Happy you're back safe and sound. What audio books did you listen to? I sometimes love the unstructured nature of a solo road trip.

  2. CB in the City Says:

    I "read" The Snow Queen, by Michael Cunningham, and "Year of the Flood" by Margaret Atwood. Both good books.

  3. FrugalTexan75 Says:

    It sounds like your two months will balance each other out.

    Good thing you went on the trip when gas prices were still fairly low. They seem to have jumped ten+ cents here this weekend.

  4. pjmama Says:

    Audio books are the best for road trips!

  5. rob62521 Says:

    Glad you are back and had a nice time. You really gave some thought on how to save for your trip. Good job!

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