It will drive you bats, literally

Ash and I have had a great month so far with our budgeting and meal prepping, etc. So our plan yesterday was to go Costco to do some shopping when I got a wild hair to clean the chimney. We bought our house a few years ago and the chimney has been blocked the entire time and in front of the chimney sits an old metal cover pictured below. So we noticed an unpleasant smell coming from the fireplace so I decided to take the cover off and see what was going on. Well the previous owner in all of his wisdom decided to block the chimney with some comforters, plastic rolls, cardboard boxes and a couple of 2×4’s that served no purpose at all. So I had to pull them all of that crap out along with some bat poop that was at the top of that heap. After that we had to go into super clean mode and sanitize everything in the living room, wearing me out and ruining our day.

Our metal cover, looks cool but we’re getting a gas fireplace insert installed so we’ll see how it works this winter as far as it directs heat, etc.


After that and a shower all I wanted was a beer so we went to our local watering hole and had one beer and some food before I just wanted to go home. My stomach was jacked from 4 cups of coffee and very little for breakfast. Needless to say our day was ruined and I was in bed by 9:30 Saturday night after watching some Star Wars on TV.

So Sunday we planned to do our food preps for the week that included chicken marinated in some chili spices with a side of black beans, spicy Mexican rice, and some grilled peppers and onions. Breakfast was my usual eggs with hash browns. The funny thing with that is everyone loves the smell of the hash browns when I walk back to my desk after I zap my breakfast.

The lunches…delicious and only $3.00 per serving for me and half of that for her since she does half of the rice and chicken.


Sunday we took the dogs around the corner to a fest that was going on and they loved it. Poor Charlie wore himself out though trying to pull me through the crowd and having the kids pet him. They had a lot of water stations set up for dogs but he was still wiped out. At one point he laid down underneath a bush to chill. After that we took him home and filled up the kiddie pool so he could cool off there.

I’ve found a couple of websites where I’ve seen some families of 4 make all of their meals for the week for $30 which is great but we’re still nowhere close to that. I think since we’re trying to figure out what meals we want to do and what recipes work for meal prepping it will be a little while before we get there.This week was good though we did it fairly cheap.

The month isn’t over yet but we cut our going out for dinner money quite a bit. I spent about $600 less this month than last month and I know she saved even more. I think between us we spent easily $1,000 less than last month on going out. I paid off my Homeowner’s association dues so that $158 a month will go to my snowball and I that will give me $650 a month towards a bill; that should be paid off by December.

I negotiated with AT&T this morning on our cable and internet bill. I had actually signed up for Sling TV and was using the 7 day free trial when we decided we were going to cancel our TV with AT&T when they miraculously dropped our bill by $70 a month for the next year. This works out great because as willing as I was to go to Sling I was really going to miss some of my news channels. I hope in the next year Sling picks up the live news channels, Fox news, MSNBC, etc. Other than that I thought they had a great package selection and we were ready to do it.

Ash was kind of reluctant in the beginning with me watching the money as close as I do. Last night when I figured out what meals were for the week she laughed but when I told her she was paying about 80%-90% less for her lunches she gave a quick acknowledgment. I don’t want us to make sure every penny is accounted for, I just want to make sure we have enough to do the things we want.

So food, bat poop, and a paid off bill. There were highs and lows this month for sure and we still have a few days to go but the wife and I both put $250 each towards principal on the house and I put over $2,000 towards debt this month which accounted for 37% of where my money went. Cool thing is we spend more time together doing more family oriented things now since we cook together, etc.







4 thoughts on “It will drive you bats, literally”

  1. I am curious why you are choosing a gas fireplace over a wood one? Will the gas fireplace still work during power outages? On the downside, wood is extremely messy and labor intensive to get. Which is more economical in your area. Where we live, wood is the cheaper of the two.


    1. Our house is already hooked up for gas and it will still work with the power out. The same goes for our stove. The stovetop will work but the oven will not without power.
      Gas is also nice because there is no annual cleaning and I don’t have to buy or chop wood.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes, with wood I climb the roof each year and chimney sweep. Plus, the constant sweeping from the wood brought in. We went with wood to be self-sufficient and economical; it’s also in abundance here. When I am in my elderly years, 80’s, we may have to purchase our wood cut and split.


      2. Your setup sounds great and efficient if a blackout occurs. We have a winter storm every year that knocks power out for days. Many people had to abandon their homes and stay in hotels in the area that had power. In an event like that, your home will be a refuge.


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