No/Low Spend November – Week 2 Report

No Low Spend November Week 2

It’s been the second week in my low/no spend November challenge! For all the other awesome folks joining in, check out my Week One list. And for more information on the challenge, stop by this post. Today I’m recapping how Week 2 went, sharing some frugal/free family fun ideas, and of course my favorite recipes of the week.

If you’re participating in the challenge, be sure to leave a comment with how things are going for you! And if you’re thinking of joining in but feel it’s “too late”, no worries. You can still join for the second half of the month!


English muffin breakfastEnglish muffin breakfast! Since I’m working from home today I abandon my oats/apple/granola routine and have a homemade white wheat English muffin. Delicious! I used this recipe from King Arthur flour, replacing the flour with white wheat flour and the sugar with honey. I had made a double batch last weekend, and frozen many of them for future use.

I got news that a Kickstarter I contributed to that helps teach girls about money was funded. Hooray! It’s a business expense, and I’m planning to donate the boxes. I’m not sure to where yet, so I’ll wait for them to arrive and start calling around.

I went grocery shopping after work while my husband went to pick up our oldest son at the school bus stop. He goes to a magnet school, so his bus gets back around 5 PM (leaves around 6 AM). Unfortunately I got a text that my his school bus was sideswiped on the highway. Luckily everyone is OK. He doesn’t get home until 6:30, so my husband heads home to make dinner. I wrap up the grocery shopping, drop everything off at home, and head out to pick him up from the bus stop.

I was originally planning to make special dinner for me and hubby, but abandoned that plan because it was so late. Homemade pizza for everyone! Also made potstickers for me and my husband as a side. They weren’t homemade though, just frozen ones.



Pumpkin MuffinsIt was a day full of free fun. White whole wheat pumpkin muffins with eggs and fruit for breakfast. For the muffins I use this recipe, substituting the flour for white whole wheat, and part of the sugar for honey. Oh and we leave out the chocolate chips because we don’t care for them with the pumpkin.

Then we went out for scouting for food, where we picked up donations for local food pantries. The scouts ended up collecting 13 TONS of food donations in our suburban town! Amazing.  Then we went off to the library for a birds of prey presentation. We saw four hawks and a bald eagle, which were all great.

I made beef negimaki and potstickers for lunch. Hubby was bored of our usual food, so I thought it would be fun to make his favorite Japanese food! Unfortunately they didn’t stay together well, but tasted great. I made a batch of white whole wheat chocolate chip cookies, with a bit less sugar than usual. They tasted great, but I still want to tweak the recipe a bit more to hopefully cut back more on the sugar.

We went to open the roasting chicken “good until the 10th” for dinner, and it was decidedly NOT GOOD. Darn. My husband ran out to Stop and Shop for another one, and for some reason it was only $2.88? Roasted chicken with apples and onions for an amazing flavor-we put them both under and inside chicken. They flavor the drippings and the chicken in a great way. Yum.

My husband got a prize in the mail from a Facebook group contest- boys were happy because they got to check out the cool stuff. Alex played with my old beads all afternoon. I used to make a lot of jewelry when I was younger, and I have lots of leftovers that I haven’t tossed over the years. He loooooved them. I put them in a Tupperware container and gave him a spoon, he had a blast playing with them all afternoon and evening. After dinner played a board game from the library, which was a lot of fun. My teenaged son even joined in! Parents of teens will confirm this is rare.


We relaxed at home in the morning, eating some more of those pumpkin muffins with eggs and fruit. Delicious!

Bookstore with catAfter lunch we needed to gas up the car, because it had less than a quarter tank left. We headed to a used book store about 45 minutes away from home to get rid of a TON of old books I don’t want anymore. I was hopeful they would accept at least some of them for cash.

This used book store is my favorite – they have 400,000 used books in multiple locations, and buy books for credit or cash. They also have cats wandering around the property, and it’s a fun scavenger hunt to find them. You can check out more pictures on their website. 

We got $56 of cash and they barely dented my books. Getting rid of stuff is hard, man. Oh well, they took some at least! Also, we already had $60 worth of credit from selling books on prior trips here. We used that to let the boys get “new” used books. Also they had free snacks – I got the boys each a cookie and Alex some Goldfish. For adults, they had free coffee but it smelled like it’s been there a while. Too bad, I’d love some coffee. Want to take a nap!

Bills: Gas for car.


Back to the grind! Oats, apple, granola, and clementine for breakfast. Then a chicken thigh, spinach, carrot and cucumber for lunch. I made coffee using beans ground at home in the afternoon. It’s a busy week at work this week, because I’m off next week for the holidays (woo hoo!). Plus there’s just a lot going on,

Home, leftover chicken & mashed potatoes with fresh broccoli and white whole wheat biscuits. Those things are amazing in gravy!

Bills: Leaf blower fuel to try and get rid of the leaves before it snows. Spoiler alert – this didn’t totally work out, unfortunately.


The same as yesterday for breakfast and lunch. I was at work late, so I didn’t get home until around seven. Had a nice dinner of baked fries, broccoli, and baked chicken tenders-yum!

The older boys were off to scouts, and the little guy made an obstacle course in the living room out of blankets, pillows, and a play tunnel. Oh, and “stinky shoes” (slippers) were part of the course too! Ha ha ha.

Bills: Oil tank was filled today. Let the winter fun begin!


Same old, same old breakfast & lunch. I had stuffed shells for dinner, which were frozen leftovers from my oldest sons birthday party about a month ago. It was a crazy busy day at work & I headed to bed early.

Bills: None today


Breakfast was the same old, veggies for lunch. For some reason I wasn’t very hungry. I left to work from home in the afternoon, since weather was supposed to be bad & I had a late meeting. Wise choice! According to the local news, people were getting stuck on the highway in the snow.

Warming up after time in the snow
Warming up after time in the snow

It started snowing around 5 and there were four inches on the ground by 7. All three boys went out to play in the snow. My hair froze into snowsicles, because I made an unwise choice for the hat I wore. I took little guy inside around 8 to have hot cocoa and some little cookies from Halloween.

Bills – None today

Week Two – Success!

It’s going pretty well so far, but we have two weeks to go in the month. Next week, since I’m off work, I need to make some items for Thanksgiving. I’m also going to make some more Christmas decorations for the front yard, meaning I have to buy some plywood and paint. That will come out of my Christmas budget, and give me something fun to do for my days off.

How has your week gone? Let me know in the comments!

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7 thoughts on “No/Low Spend November – Week 2 Report”

  1. So December was going well, until Wednesday , when one of my pet rabbits fell I’ll. I had to take him to the emergency vet that day. Then yesterday he had to go to an exotic vet specialist two and half hours away! ( I live in a small, small town)

  2. Still arguing about a heating service charge, but aside from groceries, we are on track to keep things low spend this November. Also dear husband is cancelling his gym membership because he really isn’t hitting the gym like he should! Making a lot of pie crust to store for future baking as well as making a meal plan for this upcoming busy wek, if I make a plan I ususally can stay with it and that helps anchor the spending. Aside from monthly bills, nothing extra has popped up, feeing good!

  3. I need to better at tracking! I haven’t bought any clothes so far but I think I have bought some bits and bobs I maybe could have done without. You’ve done brilliantly and well done for keeping such a close track – have you been journaling/writing everything down day by day? Maybe I need to start a spending diary!

    1. Yes I was making notes in my iPhone as the week went on, just so I would remember what happened. Plus I was updating my spending record daily, so that helped. This week I’ve been on vacation from work, so it’s been a bit trickier! 😃

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