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No Spend Month Challenge


Every year I come up with a long list of goals I want to accomplish but never seem to keep any of them. This year is different. My major goal of purging my house is well on its way. I am almost completely done with my downstairs and will start on my master bedroom this weekend.

My second goal of curbing my spending and paying down my bills is moving a bit slower. Since 2016 took a huge toll on my finances one of the major things I wanted to focus on in 2017 was my spending. I've tried budgets and everything under the sun but never had anything stick. Then I came across the no spend challenge.

I am challenging myself and YOU to spend no money throughout the entire month of March.

RULES

The rules of the no spend month challenge are pretty simple. Don't spend ANY money on anything that isn't essential. What is essential? Things that are absolutely necessary for you/your family.

Your essential list will most likely look different than mine. I drive 2 hours a day for work, so gas is definitely on my essential list. I also have a very sick little girl, so pet supplies are on my essential list. Whatever you need to survive is on your essential list.

The goal of this challenge is to get you focused on your finances and stop spending money on frivolous things.

NO SPEND MONTH - MY PLAN 

I am allowing myself to spend money on:
  • Bills - Unfortunately, I can't take the month of March off for these!
  • Gas - I drive a lot for work, so this is imperative. But, as for the weekends, I'll be staying put as much as I can.
  • Food - I will be stocking up on canned goods and frozen veggies this weekend, but I'm allowing myself fresh produce for my salads, etc. I am also starting the 21 Day Fix next week, which will keep me on a meal plan and hopefully cut my food costs.
  • Pets - With Drusilla being as sick as she is I have to keep pet supplies on this list. I'm hoping I won't have to spend money on this, but better safe than sorry.

I will NOT be allowing myself to spend money on:
  • Eating Out - I don't eat out much, but I do in the mornings at work. I usually start my day off with a tea and a scone from the local B&B. I have a little money on a gift card that I might have to use if I start having withdrawal. 
  • Crafts - NO CRAFT SUPPLIES! I have to keep repeating that to myself for the whole month of March!
  • Target - Those dollar bins get me every time!
  • All other things that are not absolutely necessary.

Wild Card:
I'm taking $20 in cash out for anything I might need (or want). This is $20 for the entire month! Here is where my tea and scone might come into play, but still NO CRAFT SUPPLIES!

So now it is your turn. Will you accept the challenge?

My First Woven Wall Hanging

This past weekend I finally finished my first woven wall hanging. Overall I am pretty happy with it, especially for my first try.


Of course, looking at it closely I can see a few issues (the roving isn't woven 100% correctly and the top is woven too tight). But these mistakes will be on my mind for my next wall hanging, which I'll be starting on this weekend!

If you remember from my first post about weaving, the kit that I bought didn't have the greatest instructions for a beginner. So, I spent a ton of time on YouTube watching video after video on weaving on a lap loom. It probably would have been more helpful if I had watched some videos before I started weaving, but you live and learn.

If weaving is something you are interested in trying this year and you want to make a quick and simple wall hanging, below is a list of what I used to get my weaving underway.

Materials


Videos



I think my next wall hanging is going to be a bit wider and without roving. The roving gave me lots of issues. This one is a little too small for my wall, but it does make me smile every time I see it in my living room.

Yarn Along: Pippa Patchwork Blanket Week 1


It has been quite some time since I've joined the Yarn Along. I'm looking forward to joining again with weekly or bi-monthly posts. 

Reading This week 

I am reading Living Well Spending Less by Ruth Soukup. Along with purging my house, I am putting myself on a strict budget. Something I will get into a little more next week. This is one of five books I checked out from the library on the subject. 

I am only about 50 pages from being done and have learned quite a bit about myself and my spending habits, as well as ways to budget and rethink buying things I don't need. I also love that each chapter includes Bible verses that pertain to the chapter's content. This book is a Christian book produced by the Christian publisher, Zondervan. If that is not up your alley you will probably want to skip it.

Crocheting 

I've finally started my new living room throw. I chose the super cute Pippa Patchwork Baby Blanket pattern by Little Doolally. My two favorite things to crochet are scarves and blocks/squares and this pattern is nothing but squares! 

I'm also thrilled that I get to use my new Amour crochet hook from Clover. I got several different sizes before Christmas, but haven't been able to put them use. . .until now!

I know a lot of people like to be challenged when they crochet, but not me! I like to be able to put on Hulu, pick up my crochet, and go to town without thinking about what I am doing. Most of the blocks are solid colors, which will be perfect for TV watching, but there are also a few patterned ones that will be a bit more challenging and require more attention.


Yarn Palette: Comfort Tones


I think this might be my favorite yarn palette from Design Seeds, thus far. These colors really spoke to me, but that might be because I am redoing my house in a farmhouse look and these are the colors I'm using, minus the pink.

Wider White: Patons Beehive Baby Chunky
Cloudy: Baby Bee Sweet Delight Chunky
Puffy Pink: Patons Beehive Baby Chunky
Earthy Brown: Patons Shetland Chunky
Taupe: Patons Shetland Chunky
Lushest Lace: Patons Beehive Baby Chunky

I used a mixture of wool, nylon, and acrylic weight 5 (bulky/chunky) yarn for this palette. I also chose a really dark brown for the fourth color, but you could totally use a dark gray or even a dark purple heather yarn.

Bulky blankets are really in right now, as are neutral colors. You could pick just one color and crochet an entire blanket or make a striped one. You could also use this palette to arm knit a blanket.

As always, if there is a color combo from Design Seeds that you’d like for me to match to yarn, just leave me a comment on this color palette post or shoot me an email.

You can also always find links to all of the yarn palette posts at the top of the blog or on my Pinterest board.