I have sooo much money in my pocket!

Discussion in 'Budget Board' started by NY Disney fan, Mar 18, 2008.

  1. NY Disney fan

    NY Disney fan DIS Veteran

    Jun 16, 2005
    Ok, I knew that would grab your attention. I've been pakcing my lunch and all snacks for the past 5 weeks (for my 9 hour work day) and it has saved me so much money! Does anyone else do this? I only take my lunch 3 days a week, can't imagine how much i'd save if I did it 5 days a week. Anyone have success stories of doing this? Let's hear them!!! :thumbsup2
  2. Jennifer823

    Jennifer823 DIS Veteran

    May 15, 2007
    I don't pack lunch, but my kids pack lunch for school and I have actually been wondering if it would be cheaper to have them buy lunch, especially my elementary age son. School lunch costs $1.90 and hasn't gone up all year like the price of food in the grocery store has. I can totally understand if you are eating outside of a school setting though, it can save you tons to pack lunch.
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  4. breezy1077

    breezy1077 <font color=green><marquee behavior=alternate>Eat

    Mar 2, 2008
    Yup! I used to spend about $6-$8 everyday for lunch. Things got a little tighter this year and we thought of ways to cut back. We had no idea how much nickle and dime stuff adds up! Lunches save alot plus instead of buying pre-bagged chips and stuff to pack, buy the large bag of snack and fill your own snack plastic baggie. You'll save $ and calories. Also, it got us thinking and I added up how much we spent on pop each mo. It totaled around $200-$300!!! So, much to my husbands chagrin, I put us on iced tea (the self-made with tea bag kind - not bottled) that's much healthier and saves a ton. I also now have our grocery bill down to on avg $75/week for a family of four. Once you get started with the lunches you'll be surprised where else that may lead you to budget crunch. Have fun! :thumbsup2
  5. Sansa

    Sansa Mouseketeer

    Jan 29, 2008
    I JUST sent my husband an email, wherin I added up all of the work cafeteria purchases he's made over the past month. Usually like $1-3 a time, sometimes more. I assume these are little snack-type purchases, or a cheap lunch (like soup, which he's mentioned before)

    Anyway. The total came out to over $40!! And that's only just over halfway into the month!!

    Haven't gotten a reply from that email yet... :rolleyes:

    It's one thing to say "Stop spending money at the NameOfWork Store", another to add up the actual dollar amount and (I hope) make someone realize just how much money you're talking about.
  6. HayGan

    HayGan We could all use some pixie dust now and then :)<b

    Apr 28, 2004
    I only go into my office 3 days a week. Lunches are form of socalizing for me but I recently cut back to only going out to lunch on Fridays. It was really making me sick thinking about what I was spending every month on eating out. I figure I am saving at least $20 a week (sometime up to $30!)

    Now I can have my one lunch a week and put all that extra money to a few happy hours each month :lmao:
  7. daughtersrus

    daughtersrus DIS Veteran

    Feb 26, 2002
    I started to pack my DH's lunch several years ago when we purchased our conversion van. It's hard to believe but he was spending almost as much on breakfast and lunch as our payment.

    Although the van has been paid off for years, I still pack it every morning except Friday. I think that it's also healthier for him to eat fast food once a week instead of 5 days.
  8. Todd&Copper

    Todd&Copper <font color=darkorchid>Sweet Chicken, that is one

    Mar 10, 2006
    The cheapest decent lunch I can get near me in DC would be about $4.50 or 5, and that is just a sandwich or soup, no drink or fruit or anything else.
    Since it is chilly out, I have been taking cans of soup for lunch. I got them on sale for $1 each, plus a 50 cents off four coupon, which was doubled, so I guess they cost around 75 cents each. With my fruit, my lunch from home this time of year is about $1.50.
    For breakfast I bring a yoplait and fruit and I make my own coffee here (total cost roughly $1), versus getting a coffee and scone at Starbucks (over $4) or a Bagle Bundle at Cosi (over $3).
    I treat mysewlf to breakfast occasionally (usually when I notice that we are out of yogurt and fruit about 5 minutes before I leave for work) and I usually have lunch out once a week, but I know I am saving a lot of money doing this.
    I need to save the money, taxes and prices are rising left and right in MD!
  9. maggiew

    maggiew DIS Veteran

    Feb 19, 2003
    I buy a weeks worth of frozen dinners (like Stouffers or Lean Cuisine, depending on what is on sale that week). I keep them in the freezer at work. So I spend around $2.50 for lunch on these dinners. I usually make myself a cup of tea in my office to go with it. So now I spend in one week what I might have spent in one day previously! Once in awhile I will order out if others in the office are doing it. But that is maybe once every 3 weeks or so. I figure I deserve that.

  10. Kate and Pete

    Kate and Pete You can't make footprints in the sands of time if

    Dec 5, 2006
    I pack all lunches and snacks. I teach high school - and here, a salad bar is $4 - that really adds up! (BTW, it's also the VERY SAME salad bar that students get charged $2 for....same sized plates and everything. And let me tell you, 16 year old wrestlers sure do eat a lot more than I do!!)

    I pack things that are EASY - so I do get into "cycles" of food. Right now I eat:
    Morning Snack: 1/2 c. frozen fruit (thawed), one yogurt
    Lunch: Carrot and raisin salad with seasame ginger dressing, 3 hard boiled eggs
    Afternoon: banana or kashi bar

    Every Sun. I use the food processor to do 3 lbs. of carrots (DH eats some as a snack at home, too!) and boil the eggs. Every morning I pack one serving for the day out of the fridge. It saves a TON of money - and it's healthy!

    I sometimes get on lunch meat cycles, where I buy lunch meat and leave it in the fridge at work. In the morning, I just pack 2 slices of bread and my snacks...Or I'll buy a big thing of hummus, leave it at work, and pack pita in the morning...
  11. MEM

    MEM DIS Veteran

    Oct 25, 2001
    I pack my lunch five days a week - its usually Lean Cuisines or Smart Ones, whatever is on sale, and ranges from $2 to $2.50 each. We have a tiny "to go" place in our building and sandwiches are $4.95 and a hot meal is $6.95 - beverage extra. I used to eat at McDonald's across the street once a week and when I stopped that, my cholesterol dropped 20 points!

    We have a lot of noontime meetings in our building and at least once a week there are leftovers free for the scrounging!

    The kitchen on our floor offers free Poland spring water, coffee, tea or cocoa.
  12. Nancyg56

    Nancyg56 DIS Veteran

    Aug 17, 2005
    I always packed my lunch when I worked. I never could justify paying money when I was working, I saved it for eating a nice meal out. DH also brings lunch. He bought lunch for years and while I really did not mind I never could understand why my normally frugal DH did not cringe when he paid for his coffee and in the morning and then again at lunch.
  13. Karenj2

    Karenj2 Hot dog, hot dog, hot diggity dog!

    Jul 8, 2002
    DH and I usually pack lunch, since we only get a half-hour for lunch anyway... (We work together.) DH has a pack of tuna & a yogurt, I range between soup, potato, sandwhich, salad, or leftovers. DH also has soda which we keep in our car - that alone saves us anywhere between $2 - $8 a week instead of buying the vending machine soda.

    On Fridays, when we get an hour, we go out for pizza (one slice each, and a soda each = $9.)
  14. Handbag Lady

    Handbag Lady Disneyland Bride 2000

    Jun 15, 2005
    I used to spend $10 a day on lunch. This is a full entre with salad and a drink.

    I needed to cut back somewhere, so I started making bigger dinners and bagging leftovers for lunch.

    I now rarely eat out at lunch and eat at my desk. :rolleyes:

    But, I save about $150 a month. :woohoo:
  15. ClarabelleCowFan

    ClarabelleCowFan <font color=teal>Found Someone You Have<br><font c

    Jun 23, 2005
    Stop the presses! There is a Cosi's in MARYLAND???? That is mine and DH's favorite place to eat in NYC and Philly. Wonder if there are any closer to us here in Harford County.

    Back to the thread - I pack DH's lunch daily - so much cheaper (and healthier) than him running thru a drive thru every day!
  16. Sansa

    Sansa Mouseketeer

    Jan 29, 2008
    We mostly make larger suppers and keep the leftovers for the next day. Those box meals are worthless! To me, anyway. They're so tiny that I'd have to get two just to feel remotely full. And where's the cost savings in that? :confused3 Never mind that we both can cook way better than anything that comes from a microwave tray...

    I can't live off of break room leftovers the way I used to... they've really cut back expenses around here, and I see lunch leftovers in the breakroom maybe once a month rather than several times a week. While this is is good for the company, it's been harder to say "No, just wait until 2 and see if something shows up in the breakroom" if I for some reason don't have a lunch that day. And before anyone jumps down my throat, NO I'm NOT talking about STEALING people's lunches. I'm talking about things like leftover pizza (or sandwiches, or whatever) from a meeting bought on the company dime, that would be thrown away if no one ate it. Anyway, it's become more more of an imperitive for me to bring my lunch for this reason.
  17. smiller

    smiller DIS Veteran

    Feb 8, 2006
    I bring my lunch everyday - only eat out maybe 1-2 times a month. And I work in the Loop! Every restaurant known to (Chicago) mankind is within walking distance. In summertime it is be a BIG temptation again. I'll just try to budget accordingly - lunches out come from the same envelope as my Going Out envelope.

    I, too, get on cycles. Right now I'm stocked with microwaveable soup. I'll bring frozen meals on occasion (if they're $1 or less), but my favorite is to have leftovers, especially if it's something really good that DSis cooked up!

    I always have dried fruit, crackers/snacky/crunchy something, and chocolate :rolleyes1 in my desk drawer. I try to bring fruit and veggies along in the morning.

    Breakfast is usally at home, consisting of eggs or cereal. I'll have my tea in the morning at work with a Soy Joy or granola/cereal bar.

    Then, when I go out, it is SO delicious! And I don't feel guilty about busting the budget, either. :thumbsup2
  18. dlz

    dlz Mouseketeer

    Feb 21, 2008
    I started a great idea in our home recently. I put a big glass cookie jar on my island in my kitchen to hold spare money. We are going to WDW in June and each of my kids are bringing a friend. I told the kids that this is our fun spending money and that we are going to need to contribute to it every chance we get in order to have the fun we are used to having w/out the friends along. With that being said I told my family that we are only eating out 1 day a week, what ever they want is fine, but if we cheat then the money comes out of the jar. In 1 1/2 weeks I have over $600.00 in that jar! I sold my gold, took kids clothes to resell, round down my paychecks and put difference in jar, got all spare change from the whole house ($12.00). Anyway, with it sitting right in front of our faces everyday it is really hard to think about taking money out just to go get a burger! I should do this all the time, it has really shown us how much money we spend for no reason. Just this morning my DH said he would just get coffee out, I looked at the jar.......he ended up pouring his coffee in his mug and heading out the door.
  19. Plantlady

    Plantlady <font color=darkorchid>I eat a lot of pringles whi

    Mar 6, 2006
    I pack my lunch, except on Fridays, which has a bit of a complicated reasoning behind it.

    Anyway, I just do leftovers from dinner. If I don't have left overs on hand, I take a salad, or a wrap, I always have those ingredients on hand.

    DH eats carrots for lunch. That's it. every day. I keep him stocked up carrots, and don't ask questions. He does come home hungry every day. :)

    of course, I work in a school, and for me to NOT pack a lunch, only costs 2.60 (plus I buy a can of soda). Still, for a hot lunch, plus salad, not a bad deal.
  20. englishteacha

    englishteacha Have courage and be kind.

    Apr 2, 2006
    Another school employee here. I could buy school lunch for $3 (though the lunch ladies are weird and don't always charge teachers the same thing regularly), but I'm not a huge fan of school food. I'd rather spend my 20 minutes eating than waiting in line with the kids! So I bring my PB&J, or leftovers. Today I had cereal because I didn't have any bread or any leftovers! If I bought school lunch, it would be $15 a week. While that's not a huge amount, what I bring comes out to much less than that.
  21. NY Disney fan

    NY Disney fan DIS Veteran

    Jun 16, 2005


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