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How to Spend Less Money Eating Out

Guest post by Carmen from Life Blessons

For the past two years, my husband and I have kept our monthly budget tacked up on a wall in our kitchen. It may not be the most creative of wall art, but in spite of that, we don’t even bother to hide it when guests come over, because over these past two years, that little sheet has become something of a masterpiece in our house.

You see, the other day, I realized how much I actually enjoy looking at our budget now. One category on the sheet caught my eye: our eating out budget. It was a big, fat zero.

I remembered how when we were first married, that was the category that we struggled the most with; our first month of marriage alone, we spent $376 on eating out! That was one of the main reasons we started hanging our budget on the wall in the first place.

Obviously, we have come a long way since those first days of matrimony. Through it all, we’ve grown not only in our marriage but also our financial savvy. Learning how to be content without eating out was something that took some practice, and here are some of the lessons we learned along the way:

All those little meals add up. When I look back over the spending of that first month, we weren’t dropping wads of cash at every meal. In fact, almost all of our eating-out bills were around $11 each. The most expensive meal we had the entire month was when we took a friend out to pizza and it totaled $30!

Eat out for lunch instead of dinner.
Eating out for lunch can cost considerably less than when you eat out later in the evening. Plus, you’re usually not quite as hungry, so you eat less. That right there will cut down on your spending!

Instead of going out for entire meals, go out for treats.
One thing we’ve done to trim our spending is to go out for things like ice-cream or coffee, rather than full-fledged meals. Sure, you can have coffee or ice-cream at home, but when it scratches the eating-out itch at a fraction of the price, it can be well worth the splurge!

Indulge at home.
Find meals that indulge your taste buds and make you excited to eat at home. For instance, we have a cheesy casserole dish that I like to make, which has become a favorite dish my husband looks forward to, week after week. Even though it may not be super-healthy, I’m sure it’s much more healthy than most of what you’ll find on restaurant menus. But even more than that, it keeps us eating at home–and enjoying it, all the more!

Carmen lives in Atlanta, Georgia with her husband, with whom she just celebrated two years of marriage! She writes about her life and faith on her blog, Life Blessons.

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  • Bethany Bergen says:

    Very good article! My husband and I have been married 2 yrs, I work full-time while he’s in seminary and we are involved in other activities- we struggle a lot with fatigue and last-minute-we-have-no food/meat eating out!! trying to be more disciplined!

  • I also think there’s no shame in budgeting specifically to eat out if you know it’s something you enjoy a lot. I’d rather spend money on a nice meal with my family then a nice outfit. That might not be the same for others, but I just work it into the budget and eat out guilt free! Love it!

    • Crystal says:

      You sound a lot like me! 🙂 Budgeting for it makes it enjoyable and guilt-free!

    • Emily Kay says:

      Exactly! It’s all about priorities. 🙂 For us, budgeting so we can afford to eat out as a family and for date nights is important. So we make cuts in other areas. Sure, we could give it up but it’s just something we love to do! 🙂

    • I completely agree with you! Good food is one of my passions, so including it in our budget makes it a lot more fun (and tasty!) than eating out at a place that we may not like much, but is a good deal! I’d also take a nice meal with my hubby over a new outfit any day! 🙂

    • jen says:

      AGREE! We are very frugal in all we do, yet we love a good meal out now and then. Especially for date nights. Also, we do Mcd’ or Taco Bells once a week w our kiddos as a treat after our homeschool co-op.
      nothing wring w that if it’s in the budget.
      I think it’s very hard and restricitive to make a blanket statememt like we NEVER eat out. Also, there are ways to do it cheaper. For example. We have 2 free steak dinners at outback coupons that we are saving for our next date night.

      • Melissa Z says:

        I don’t think it’s restrictive to say we never eat out- but I’d have to change it to we only eat out once in a blue moon. Frankly, I’ve never understood why/how people eat out so much, but we grew up out of town, so the only eat out option was Casey’s pizza & since we weren’t close to anything else, it was never tempting to stop & grab something if no one felt like cooking.

      • Carissa says:

        Hey Jen, just as a warning, my husband and I tried to both use our free steak coupons at Outback and they only allowed one per table. It does say that in the fine print so just beware they might not let you use both! 🙂 It’s still a great deal! 😀

  • Stacee says:

    This is a great reminder for me! My husband and I have been married for 4 years and we still struggle with eating out. We eat out very cheaply, but we still need to cut way back and eat more meals at home. I actually wrote a post on my blog a couple days ago about how we save money eating out ( In our first year of marriage we spent a ridiculous amount of money on food, but over the last couple years I’ve become a better cook so we do eat more at home now than we used to. Great post!

  • Heidi says:

    good article, though it doesn’t tackle the “I dont feel like cooking or doing the dishes” itch I get- to me thats the best part of going out… and worth spending $$ on 🙂

  • Shannon O says:

    when we go out either my hubby and I split a meal like at a steak house or our kids split a meal if we know the kids meal is HUGE… one place we went once the taco they brought out for our then 3 year old daughter was over a foot long… we now know that will feed her now at age 5, her 2 year old sister and me… so we just order that and a small meal for my hubby… total less than 10 bucks with tip… and we all drink water and the girls have their sippy cups

  • I recently wrote a post about this. Here are the ways we save money by eating out:

    1. Eat Earlier. When we go out to eat, we go for lunch instead of dinner. Often the same things on a dinner menu are on the lunch menu for half price.
    2. Check Costco. Our Costco has $100 in local restaurant gift cards for $70.
    3. Use Groupon. If you like trying new places, there are often local Groupons you can take advantage of.
    4. Take advantage of Leftovers, or Share an Entree. If we’re going to a restaurant where the food saves well, we’ll each order our own entree and save the rest of it for dinner that night. (Since we go out to eat for lunch instead of dinner, we’re not as hungry.) Places where food doesn’t save well, my husband and I will share an entree and each order a side salad or share an appetizer. We have never left a restaurant hungry because of this, and save money in the process. We always tip well, though, regardless of our bill.

    • Diane says:

      Groupon helped us when we ate out on our little vacation. 50% off at Quiznos and a pizza place and that was our entire dining out for the trip since we packed food, too.

    • Kristine says:

      We usually go out for lunch, too, instead of dinner. Sharing an entree wouldn’t work for us, though, because my hubby is 6’11” and isn’t always satisfied even with a whole meal at a restaurant. And he never has leftovers to take home. At home we hardly ever have leftovers either (unless he doesn’t like something). 🙂 We usually either go someplace really cheap (fast food) or use Groupon and similar deals when we go out.

  • Megan says:

    We are a family of 4 and spend $250 each month on eating out. Basically, we typically only eat out on weekends….I cook during the week. We use coupons whenever possible…..our local favorite Mexican restaurant has coupons on the back of our Bi-lo receipt. So we usually eat there Fridays….with the $3 coupon and the tip, we usually spend $20.

    Saturdays is Cracker Barrel since my husband and boys love their vegetable plate. We’ve discovered that 3 kids vegetable plates are actually cheaper than the Regular adult 6 Vegetable plate plus 3 drinks. Husband and boys share the veggies, I order a kids meal too. We can get out of there with tip for about $20.

    Sundays is Firehouse Subs. 2 kids meals free with purchase of any adult meal. I eat a kids meal as well because I am in the process of losing baby weight plus I just can’t eat the bigger sandwich without feeling too full. So one adult meal and one kids meal ends up being about $12.

    That is $52ish per weekend, $104 per two week period (which is how I budget) I budget $125 so usually I will grab a lunch out one day ~or~ take the kids to Chik-fil-a or grab a pizza one night if my husband is out of town to make up the balance of the allotted amount.

    This, along with only $25 Blow money/allowance every two weeks really helps us keep the expenses down. We don’t even have a regular clothing budget either….I allot money every once in a while and we head out with our coupons to Kohls and raid the clearance racks. We have ~$0~ entertainment budget because we’d rather use that money to eat out than see a movie.

    • Chrissy Stoll says:

      You have definitely thought it through and budgeted realistically instead of “accidentally” splurging and then regretting it. It seems like you know exactly where your money is going, and you’re enjoying eating out with your family while doing it in a frugal way. This is very do-able for my family of 4 as well. Thanks for sharing!

  • One more tip. Check out local restaurants that offer Loyalty Programs. Some restaurants will give you bonuses for spending a certain amount, as well as birthday and anniversary freebies. These programs are usually free. There is a local restaurant that offers a $5 credit for every $50 spent. Since I purchase the $100 gift cards for $70 at Costco, we end up getting $100 worth of food for only $60. We eat there often because you get a lot of food, and I don’t feel guilty when I’m eating for 40% off each time!

    • Emily says:

      I’d like to know more about these $100 gift cards for $70 at Costco. Can you be more specific as to what restaurant cards they carry? Or does it change all the time? Do all Costco stores carry them? I’ve been thinking about getting a membership there. It might be worth it if I can get great deals on restaurant cards too!

  • Kim says:

    Our daughter and son-in-law recently gathered up all their gift cards that had only a few dollars on them and did a “tour-de-town” night. One restaurant for an appetizer, another for a salad, coffee, dessert, etc. They had a blast. It gave them a free date with lots of choices. Creativity in eating out can make it all the more fun.

  • Jessica Peck says:

    5. Sign up at a daily deal filter site like Yipit, where you can filter deals by location and type (restaurants, travel, hobbies, etc.). Every couple of weeks I get an email from Yipit whenever there is a restaurant deal within 10 miles of me.

    6. Read online ratings through or Don’t waste your time or money going to an awful restaurant!

    7. If you find yourself becoming a regular, ask if they have regular customer discounts (like a loyalty card of sorts) or sign up online. My husband and I were able to go to Chili’s two months ago for a grand total of $7.60, due to a birthday freebie & a coupon.

    8. Google “birthday freebies” and sign up everyone in your family.

    9. Pick appetizers, instead of meals. Most meals are too large, anyway.

    10. Look at the menu online to see whether or not the restaurant has variety of low-cost options!

  • Emily says:

    We have a date night every month, and for the past 6 years that meant going out to eat every time. But recently we decided that we will save the eating out for more “special” occasions (birthday, anniversary, etc) and the other months we will still eat at home (our parents take the kids). But to make it less cooking for me, we have turned to frozen dinners. We especially love Bertolli (pasta w/ shrimp and asparagus- just dump it in a pan, and its ready in 10 min!) with some fancy bread, salad and sparkling grape juice. I can usually get it for only $5/bag or less- considerable cheaper than eating out! and more comfy too! 🙂

  • Sudschick says:

    I’d much rather eat at home, and it’s much more fun to invite friends over and make a few pizzas from garden fresh tomatoes and pesto made from garden grown basil. I can make 3 large pizzas for what it costs to buy one, and the company and the atmosphere is much better.

    • Sarah says:

      Ah, homemade pizza. That’s where it’s at! I totally agree there. I like mine better, know what’s in it, and have a hard time justifying ordering out because of it.

    • Kristine says:

      I make my own pizza, too, every Saturday. It’s one of the family’s favorite meals.

  • Mary says:

    My husband and I don’t eat out much because the money just isn’t there but on the rare occasion that we have a little extra we do like to do something special. Last week we had an extra $20 so while our toddler was visiting grandma, we jumped on the idea to eat something different. We got food from a local restaurant but instead of eating there, we got it to-go. We each kept our meals under $10 each, which isn’t hard in a lot of places around here and saved more then $10 by not having to pay for drinks and tips. Drinks can add up fast! $3 for a drink seems like too much to me when your on a budget. If we are out, sometimes I just stick with water to save the money.

  • Those are some great tips!! We definitely enjoy eating out for lunch instead of dinner when we can!!

    We also take advantage of eclubs and those deals. Especially when our birthdays roll around – we get special coupons and take those to go out to eat. I had free Noodles for my birthday!!

  • Rebekah says:

    How about drinking water? That can save a lot of money.

  • Mary Ann says:

    Ways we save on eating out are: using B1G1 coupons (sign up for restaurant emails and look in the newspaper), eating out for breakfast or lunch instead of dinner, sometimes sharing a meal (our favorite Chinese restaurant is great for this), drinking water and sometimes getting takeout instead of dining in which saves on tips.

    We don’t go out often but we do budget enough for 1 or 2 meals out per month since we enjoy it and my husband likes to treat me to a night off from cooking every once in a while.

  • amber says:

    Great tips! Something we do is order an adult meal for our 4 and 6 year old to share. It usually is cheaper then ordering two kids size meals and you also get more food. We went out on Sunday for a treat and only spent $30 for the four of us including tip. We also brought two to go boxes home with us and it was our supper that night. I blogged about it here

  • Kristi says:

    There is a website called and diff restaurants run 50% off sales (Pay $25 and get $50 worth of food). It is free. I don’t know if it is all over the US or not. Also we like “kids eat free” nights too!

  • Meredith says:

    We like a lot of international food that I just can’t get into making at home. My takes Indian, sushi, and Thai are pretty pathetic. Also, Mexican and Spanish foods at my house are good but nothing like eating out. However, most of these types of restaurants are always offering bogo coupons in my area because they aren’t chains. Or we will split a meal. My daughter is a rice fanatic and our favorite Thai place has yet to charge her for a bowl of rice and some orange slices. We budget out date night once a month and go out with all of us the other three weeks. It gets me new ideas in the kitchen plus…no dishes!

    • Meredith says:

      Go out one time each week that is!

    • Kristine says:

      My hubby loves Indian food, and I prefer going to an Indian buffet over trying to cook Indian food at home. I’ve found it too time-consuming, and I don’t always have the right ingredients on hand. My kids love Chinese buffets, but I haven’t had much success with cooking Asian food myself. It never turns out quite right, so a restaurant is better for that. My meal plans are pretty basic–soups, casseroles, crockpot meals, roasted vegetables, tacos, homemade pizza once per week, etc. We go out maybe two or three times per month.

  • Thanks for sharing this guest post of mine, Crystal! I’ve loved reading through the comments and seeing everyone else’s tips for saving money on eating out! Great ideas, as always 🙂

  • Nora says:

    After watching a few seasons of a particular show where a well-known chef tries to help restaurant owners with there business and in the process exposes some very nasty practices and public health issues. I just dont eat out as much now.

  • Amy B says:

    *Sigh.* I have to say that eating out has become a lot less fun since we started couponing and cooking at home more. Now that I see how much food we can buy at a store for the same price of one meal out, it hurts a bit to spend that money out. Still, we do it once a week because it is a nice break for all of us!

  • jen says:

    Also wanted to say if you eat out, drink water, and go to kids eat free places! OCharleys is always kids eat free.

    • Kristine says:

      Some places around here have kids-eat-free deals on Tuesday evenings. Unfortunately, my hubby doesn’t often get off work early enough to take advantage of that, and our kids are almost past the age range of eligibility for those deals.

  • Amanda says:

    Sometimes prepared meals at grocery stores are decently price. It might not be the same as going out but it is not you cooking at least lol and it is something maybe you wouldnt make at home.

  • Amanda says:

    Sometimes prepared meals at grocery stores are decently price. It might not be the same as going out but it is not you cooking at least lol and it is something maybe you wouldn’t make at home

    • Kristine says:

      I agree. I occasionally pick up a packaged meal at the store if I have to change my menu plan for some reason or run out of time to get everything done. It’s not very healthy, but every once in a while the convenience is nice, and usually it’s cheaper than taking the whole family out for dinner.

  • AnneJisca says:

    Going out for treats is the main thing we do, when we want to “go out”! Mid-afternoon family outing for ONE side of fries? Sure is fun, and costs $4. 🙂

  • Mary Ellen says:

    I second O’Charley’s! I get a huge California Chicken Salad, my daughter gets 2 hamburgers and broccoli or fries, my son gets 2 hamburgers and broccoli or fries, unlimited rolls and water for $10.27 before tip.

    I can barely buy the items at the grocery store for that much. After the chicken, romaine lettuce, fancy lettuce, diced strawberries, candied pecans, mandarin oranges and dried cranberries, I’m sure I would be out a good $20 at least. Then add on the kids’ meals ingredients and you’re looking another $5 at least.

  • WilliamB says:

    6. Don’t buy beverages.

    For folks who use coupons, or split dishes, or go for the kids eat free nights, please consider tipping on the full amount or as if you ordered one entre per person. Waitrons get paid much less than minimum wage on the assumption that they will get tips, and they’re taxed as if they get all those tips.

  • Marie says:

    Eating out is definitely something that we’ve gotten creative at! I have b/g twins that are 4 and a baby. Our budget for entertainment/eating out is $100 a month. (Babysitting money comes out of this too) However, we still manage to have fun! Here are some ways we save:
    1. We drink only water and bring cups for the kids or just get them water too.
    2. We either order one appetizer and one meal and split it, or two meals. It’s alot of food especially if a restraraunt has a salad and/or bread too included.
    3. We order it how the kids will eat it. For example, they don’t like tomatoe sauce so anything Italian we get the sauce on the side.
    4. The only time we get kids meals is if they are free. There are a couple restraraunts that offer 2 free kids meals for 1 adult meal.
    5. We use gift cards, the entertainment book coupons, and restraurant coupons.
    6. We take advantage of restraurant deals for birthdays. There is a fancy Hibachi restraurant that offers a $30 gift certificate for your birthdays. So twice a year we eat there!!! Yummy!!
    7. We also enjoy restraurants that offer 1/2 price deals on appetizers. Sometimes we have to sit in the bar area but where we live there is no smoking in restraurants.
    8. For entertainment I look for free activities. Our community has a pumpkin patch festival each year so I wait til then to get our pumpkins-FREE. Each child gets to pick a pumpkin. We also have some “cheap” movie theatre’s that cost only $2 for a movie. It means we have to wait a few months til a movie is no longer in the main theatre but it’s worth it. Or we will do the RedBox or netflex.
    9. The one thing about eating cheaply is that we ALWAYS tip on the full amount of the meal. So if it was a bogo we tip on what the cost of both is.


    • jenna says:

      Just curious – which restaurants do 2 free kids meals for 1 adult?

      I love how you (and others) have talked about tipping on the full cost of the meal (no matter what you actually pay for it). I am all about saving money, but not at the cost of our service, and it’s the more honorable thing to do, even if no one else knows you’re doing it.

  • Thanks for the post, Carmen! 🙂 You’re right. All of those “small tab” meals sure add up. That’s our problem. $10 here, $10 there … we need to stop that!

  • Ginger says:

    Question: How can you eat lunch out or go out for treats if your eating out budget is zero? Wouldn’t that mean you don’t ever go out?

  • Sara says:

    I’m noticing a lot of people bragging about their entire meal costing xxx including tip. I find this disturbing, because it means the waiters and waitresses are getting docked because of the coupons. You should ALWAYS tip the FULL amount when using a coupon, B1G1, or birthday freebie. Doing otherwise is not being frugal, it’s being cheap at the expense of someone else.

  • Kimberly Tinney says:

    One thing I started doing is carrying crystal light or kool-aid individual drink packets. We have 4 kids- the baby brings her sippy along but I can usually split a packet if crystal light amongst the other three kids and save anywhere from 5-7 dollars on NOT buying lemonade. Or the more health conscious, you can also get pedialyte apple juice packets.

  • Pam says:

    This was such a timely article for me. Eating out is the area we struggle with the most in our budget. I especially liked the idea that eating some of the not so healthy casserole dishes (like Taco Pie) at home is probably way healthier than eating the fries food we usually choose when we eat out.

  • Michelle says:

    I must say as a former server the one place you shouldn’t skimp on is the tip (if your server did their job well, that is!) Some states servers get an hourly wage well under minimum wage standards and those tips are the real meat of the take home pay. So please budget for tips too, especially consider the amount of work done, not just the final total on the check (ie: if you used coupons or took advantage of free kid meals that won’t be accounted for if you base your tip on a percentage of the total, all the free refillable items included, etc). Our family will eat a lot of PB&J’s during the week if we know we can eat out and being served for a meal every once is a while is a true treat for me, and I want to show our servers how much we appreciate the service as well as the food!

  • Elias says:

    Until recently, eating out was pointless with little ones who either won’t eat what we paid for or just acted like animals. (Toddlers are a pain in a sit down restaurant). They are much better now and we stick to quick places like panera bread but for my husband and I, we actually do pick up from Chillis or Outback and it really saves us money on tip and overpriced drinks. Plus we can eat it after the kids go to bed and actually take our time and enjoy!

  • Cris says:

    I am for not ordering drinks and having water, we don´t have a big family but for those who have this can add up pretty quickly. On top of that you are very likely to ‘drink’ a lot of calories with unlimited refills!
    I love groupons for eating out, this is what has allowed us to go eat out once in a while for very cheap. Recently we had one for qdoba (fast, but not fast food) mexican food and for $12 my husband and I shared chips and salsa, chicken tortilla soup and a huge burrito (both for each one) and just drank water! For other places we often find $10 for $20 worth of food and then of course you have to add tax and tip on the full amount, but still worth the little distraction and joy that it gives us. We might buy certain groupons and not use it for a while since some have long exp dates and we try not to eat out more than 2x a month as we are on a strict budget.

  • Kate says:

    My way of preventing our family from eating out too much was becoming allergic to gluten LOL. It eliminates most restaurants!

  • Danielle B says:

    As I’ve said in the comments of other articles, this is where my family is right now. When you start adding up your monthly costs of eating out, you might be amazed. We’ve been doing this for almost 3 months now. When we first started it felt like waking up out of a dream….”Really? We’ve been spending this amount of money on what????” I’m at the point of refusing to eat out anymore. I’m straining with everything I have to make every single meal, snack and drink at home.

    I have a hard time swallowing even “budgeted” eating out anymore. There are simply so many more things that can be done with that money. Sure, if you’re at a point financially where you’re fully funding your child’s educational savings account in a matter of 30 days like Crystal and her family, then you can probably justify a budgeted eating out. I can’t imagine that as even a wild dream at this point.

    In my opinion, there are too many other things for my family to be putting money towards now. I’m growing more and more certain that another severe economic downturn is coming fast and hard. Every extra nickle we have is going towards preparedness, and I hope others are paying attention too. I understand that everyone’s budgets look different. However, I do want to be a voice out there encouraging as many as possible to carefully examine extra expenses and put as much towards preparedness as possible, instead of just eating out because you feel you can afford it.

    • Crystal says:

      Great points! Just thought I should clarify that it’s taken us 3+ months to fully fund each of the accounts. Though 30 days would sure be nice. 🙂

      One thing I did want to mention is that after a number of years of making every single meal from scratch on a very limited budget, eating out is something we really enjoy. But only because the sacrifices made us appreciate it more. And if our income were to suddenly change quite a bit, it’d be one of the first things we’d cut from the budget. It’s a luxury, not a right. We can totally live without it and find plenty of other ways to enjoy life. 🙂

      Personally, I think brighter days may be around the corner for the economy soon… but it’s still good to be prepared and plan ahead as much as is possible. However, I think it’s also good to make sure that you allow yourself a little wiggle room to enjoy life (if you can) because you’re sure to burn out quickly if you don’t.

      That said, if you are struggling financially and are eating out on a regular basis, examine how much you could put towards your mortgage or credit card payment or car payment if you started eating at home. Simple changes can have such a significant impact.

      • Elias says:

        I’d also like to add that completely giving up on eating out is deprivation for us. We tend to go through cycles where we stay in and then we’re ready to get out and enjoy food that I cannot make. I.e, I don’t own a smoker so going to smokey bones is WORTH it to me! That is wonderful that you can go without. I wish I was more disciplined and a better chef. 🙂

        • Danielle B says:

          It’s deprivation for us, too! Trust me! But a necessary deprivation for now. 🙂 We reached the point of not having a choice in eating out anymore, so that helps with the self-control aspect. For instance, if we eat any food outside our home, then we won’t have enough money out of our paycheck to pay the electric bill, natural gas bill, or rent.

          I’m just now really learning how to cook. We tease my mom that we knew when supper was ready because the can opener started and the microwave dinged! 🙂 She’s an amazing nurse and helps people heal in ways most others never could. So it’s okay that she didn’t cook or teach me to cook either! I’m learning now, one recipe at a time! 🙂

      • Danielle B says:

        Hmmm. I reread what I wrote, and I’m not sure I did the best job of getting my point across.
        Anyway, I’m certainly not being critical of you or your family, or anyone else, for having worked so hard for those tough years and now being able to reap those amazing benefits! Any family who sacrifices, plans and budgets accordingly should be happy they can enjoy those fun moments of eating out. I mean, financial freedom is the goal, isn’t it?!?! My point was simply that my family is so far from that right now, that I just can’t see wasting money eating food outside the home. But, that’s just where we are. In my mind we’re where you all were in the beginning, but with three children ages almost 6, 4 and almost 2. 🙂

        We’ll agree to disagree on the economy. 🙂 Unless “around the corner” looks like 2 1/2 to 3 years….and then we’ll agree to agree. ;-D

  • Janet says:

    Four times per year (every quarter) I buy our family something special.
    This quarter we ordered from Harry and David’s . I have bought Steaks from Omaha and Special Gift baskets as well as other specialty stores online
    Sometimes I get gourmet treats at special stores , or just a special section in our grocery store. We budget $100 each quarter for the items we pick and it is such a blessing to get these treats. It is a way I say Thank you to our family for putting up with Beans and Rice and Potato almost all the time.
    Around Christmas we ask for nuts or fresh fruits for gifts it is truly what we want. I don’t want anyone to buy me another piece of clothing that does not fit, or another nick nack I have to dust. A tiny bag of nuts that ran only $2.00 is fine by me it is the thought that counts. Besides I can use $2.00 worth of pecans to make pecan waffles for a special holiday treat. So please no more greeting cards buy me nuts please!

  • Amber Cullum says:

    It is so true! We still struggle, at times, with our restaurant budget. However, eating lunch out has saved us a lot.

    Plus, each year on our birthday’s we budget for a nice, expensive meal out. It is totally worth it and guilt free. Plus, it is something we really look forward to.

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