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Water bill is drowning me!

February 2nd, 2010 at 07:20 pm

I rent a small (less than 1000 sq ft) older house that's clearly not very efficient. Besides the high power bill due to the single pane windows and drafty floors....my water bill has doubled in the past 2 cycles and I really don't know why.

There are 4 of us in the household and our water habits have not changed. The utility company checked the meter and don't see any problems. We're pretty much just home on weeknights and weekends. We don't have a dishwasher so we do have to do dishes by hand; we never use water outdoors for anything.
Other than the possibility a plumbing leak....I'd love anyone's suggestions on how to lower this bill. I know I could get the landlord to check things out, but he didn't think there was a problem when we started having $300-$400 power bills (with the thermostat never going above 62).

We're trying to move to another place, but in case we end up staying here for a while, I'd love any suggestions! It stinks when you try to get 2 steps ahead and these crazy bills take you 3 steps back. It's a budget buster!

Pat on my back! My grocery list PLUS menu

January 15th, 2010 at 04:09 pm

Due to some unusual expenses (personal property taxes, higher than usual power bill etc..) I decide to turbo-grocery budget this week! Rick is out of town so the grocery list & budget are average, but I think we did pretty good!

I shopped at Kroger, and pretty much went generic (I didn't have any good coupons anyway). Just about everything was either generic or on sale. Here's what I got:

Kr. bagels - $1.00
Kr. frozen veges - $1.00
Bananas (1.64 lbs) - $0.80
Kr. cream cheese - $1.00
Navel Oranges (2) - $2.00
Romaine Lettuce - $1.49
Cucumber - $0.83
Kr. apple juice (frozen) - $1.39
10 lb bag of potatos - $1.99
Kr. hot dogs - $0.89
Kr. shredded cheddar cs - $1.50
Kr. bologna - $0.89
Kr. wheat bread - $1.00
Kr. french bread - $1.00
Kr. hot dog buns - $1.00
Kr. crackers - $1.22
Kr. popcorn - $1.19
Kr. baked beans - $1.00
Kr. chicken noodle soup (2) - $1.09
Kr. frozen pot pies (2) - $1.16

Grand Total (with tax): $24.16

We did have some things already in the pantry & freezer. Here's what we made to eat all week:


- hot dogs, baked beans & corn
- chicken pot pie with fruit
- grilled cheese w/chicken noodle soup
pancakes & fruit
- pasta with spag. sauce & garlic bread (I already had the pasta & sauce)
- baked potato & salad
- grilled chicken breast with pasta & salad (already had 2 frozen chicken bst)
- salisbury "steak" (frozen turkey burgers) with mashed potatoes, garlic bread & salad


- leftovers, pb & j sand., bologna sand., popcorn, crackers, cut up veges, fruit, popcorn, bagel w/cream cheese


- grits (already had those), pancakes, french toast, certeal (already had 1/2 box of cheerios), bagel.

OK health police, don't come after me! Yes, I bought hot dogs and bologna, but my kids are in love with that crap, and when I can afford it I buy the turkey, healthy kind. But on "lean" weeks like these, they got what was cheapest. Otherwise though, I had plenty of salad, veges & fruit to go around.

I pat myself on the back...I did really good this week. Good savings to all, and to all a good night!