Spend June’s $30

Today I hit “off” instead of “snooze” and then did the thing where you wake up and say, “Why is it so light out,” so I have to kind of hurry. I know this makes Faithful Reader Paula nervous, but it is the truth. Paula, you can read slowly. By the time you see this, it will be over.

Yesterday the car place called me, where I bought my car. “We found a ring in your old car,” they said. “And a compact. It’s kind of a sparkly pink.”

Gee. I wonder if that’s mine.

The ring, however, baffled me. I didn’t lose a ring.

So I drove down there after work and got my bowels-of-the-old-car stuff. Look who I saw.


why you bury me in the cold cold ground

Oh, I felt so sad. My little yellow car. Why do we get so attached to our cars? They’re still doing whatever they do to cars before they sell them.

Anyway, the ring is a gold man’s wedding ring. Not that it belonged to a gold man, although for all I know it did. Mr. Goldman lost his ring in my car. And you know, the whole time I owned that yellow car with a yellow-gold band secretly in it, I had the original owners’ last names and address. Their paperwork was in the glove compartment and I kept it with my own. When I traded this car in, the sales guy said, “Oh just throw away all that stuff.”

“But won’t the new owner want that repair info and–”

“Naw. Just throw that away.”

So I did and now I can’t call to say, I HAVE YOUR RING.

The pink compact was totally mine. News flash!

When I got home last night, I did all my regular things (scream at a soccer match, fix a broken pipe, play my bassoon, speak in tongues) and then I noticed the back yard had approximately 70 million fireflies in it.

Here is a 24-second video in which I don’t know if you can see fireflies or not. I can, but maybe you won’t. I sure know how to make this video sound inviting.

Poor Edsel and his gingerly-sitting-down self. Anyway, there were fireflies. Trust me. And then I heard thunder in the distance. “This is all my favorite stuff,” I thought. “Fireflies, thunder, a dog.” Even a cat was there, on a shocking note.

“The only thing missing are bats and a train. All my favorites.”

And then I am not kidding you, I heard the squeak of a bat and saw one just as it flew out of my sight, and then A TRAIN RUMBLED BY. I took video of that but it’s pretty much the same as above only with a train.

But that is not why I’ve gathered you all today in your metal folding chairs. I want tips. Not, like, tips you’d give a waitress but suggestions.

I am having a little game with self. Every time I travel home, whether it’s by car or by plane, it costs me $500. By car, it’s pet care, gas, hotel. By plane, it’s pet care and the ticket. It’s always $500. I been traveling to Michigan from North Carolina since aught 7. I know by now.

Anyway, I have $500.22 saved. I get paid Friday. I have $30 on me in cash. I have enough cat and dog food till Friday, although Edsel’s cupboard is looking a little bare but it’s enough, I think.

In my fridge, I have half a loaf of bread. I have 10 eggs. I have spaghetti noodles but no sauce. I have popcorn and I have peanut butter. I have two frozen hamburger patties in freezer.

What do I buy to eat from today through Friday night with my $30? I mean, I HAVE $500. I just want to not break into it before trip. I can if I have to, but I’m just seeing if I can go not doing so.

I will not say, “Okay, go.” I will also not say, “Aaaaand, go!” People who do that should be slapped with a fork. Or a mysterious gold ring.


69 thoughts on “Spend June’s $30

  1. Keep the ring. It’s a precious metal and that will be useful when the economy crashes. Trust me. Gold always holds its value. As for food, I learned a neat trick from Algernon Blackwood (English majors might get that reference)…a bit of olive oil, a shot no chaser, is filling. I’ve thought of trying this but am saving it for when the economy crashes. In the meantime rice is filling and cheap.


  2. Pawn the ring and enjoy the money. Men rarely have any emotional attachment to a plain gold band. It has probably long been replaced or forgotten. I love all the food suggestions!


  3. I can not top these suggestions, but I will suggest tacos. I could eat tacos every night. Some ground beef, lettuce, tomato, sour cream and cheese. Extra lettuce can be a salad.

    Our 1976 Chevy Impala station wagon died in 1991 shortly after my sister’s wedding. I was home for summer from college. My mom and I put the wedding flowers on the car. I put on my token black dress and I posed leaning on the car pretending to cry. My mom took pictures of our fake funeral. The tow truck guy showed up a tad early. Confident he thought we were wacky!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. The advice here has been priceless the last couple of days! Thank you, June, and everyone else! I am too spendy with the grocery money and that MUST change now!


  5. Hi June,
    Use some of the meat patties to make meatballs for spaghetti. Buy generic pasta sauce or canned tomatos and tomato paste to make your own. That would feed you for two days, plus a bag of frozen veggies. Or use the patties for a mini meatloaf (bake in a muffin tin!). Buy a 6 pack of eggs, and one can of tomato sauce. Use two eggs, the sauce, spices, and chop up a few slices of bread for crumbs. Buy a few potatoes for baked potatoes. If you did bake a batch of meatloaf “muffins”, then you can add veggies and rice or potatoes to make meals for the rest of the week.


  6. Big Lots also has fun and inexpensive groceries. Given your abundance of eggs, I would go for french toast every day.


  7. I think I would opt for Wendy’s dollar menu – easy peasy – no cooking!
    I always keep my old car info… But then I am some kind of a pack rat maybe! ha ha


  8. Does the gold ring have initials in it? If so, it might jog your memory. Did you buy the mini from a dealer? Maybe they have the info.




  9. If it were me I would blow it a great meal of Mexican food and then eat the crap in your refrigerator and the popcorn for the rest of the week. But that’s just me.


  10. Have you ever had a date in your car? Maybe he was married and it fell out of his pocket.
    You can eat off of the dollar menu at McDonald’s or Wendy’s all week on $30.00.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I had the same thought on the ring. Pawn that cheater’s ring and enjoy your week with the extra cash!


  11. I might be the only one that thinks the ring thing could go the other way. What if Joooon, who is short on time and works a lot and is practically a zookeeper at home, does the work. Finds the owner. And maybe the ring reveals an affair or something that puts these currently unsuspecting former owners in a bad situation. Sitch, as you do.


    • Would the previous owner of the car have enough info to call you, or get in touch through the dealership? Does anyone know? If a person could have asked you about a missing ring and didn’t, that would be a reason not to worry. As much.


  12. Go to Olive Garden. Order the shrimp and chicken carbonara and just drink water. Eat 1/3 of the entree. Take home the other 2/3 and the breadsticks. That’s about $20, but you didn’t have to shop or cook and you’ll get three meals out of it. You still have $10 left. Balance out the fattening pasta dish with salads for lunch. Buy only things you really like so it’s more of a treat. Add protein with tuna or chicken or shrimp.


  13. I’d want some fruit or vegetables to go with that stuff. I’m not picky — whatever is cheap in the store. I loved the fireflies although Edsel seemed not to care at all. Blu was there!


  14. Thing is…what if the ring is part of an illicit affair? Hmmm. Or maybe a car salesman slipped off as a hot babe was test driving. Or maybe your window was rolled down, and someone chucked it in there as a hot babe was walking towards him on the street. Or maybe it is the Ring To Rule Them All.


  15. Do you have an Aldi near you? That is my go-to when the grocery fund is dwindling.
    My suggestions:
    Jar of marinara for spaghetti
    Buns for hamburgers
    A pot pie

    I’m trying to keep in mind that you don’t really cook a lot. If I were home alone and didn’t need to cook for these people these are the meals I would eat for a few days:

    Angel hair pasta with Ragu (I make homemade sauce all the time but sometimes I want plain Ragu)
    A chicken or turkey pot pie (maybe 2. I’m a fleshy woman)
    Soup and rice (a throwback to my poor youth. I use Campbell’s chunky beef soup heated up and served over buttered rice. It’s so good!)
    Hot dogs with tots


  16. Lovely post, Coot.

    1/2 Rotisserie chicken, salad makings and a loaf of bread, an apple. You can have chicken and salad. With part of the chicken make chicken salad for sandwiches or eat with crackers. The bread you can also have toast and eggs or french toast. Cut up the chicken and add to broth or bouillon and add noodles. Chicken noodle soup.

    Cool find in your old car. I one time traded in a car and forgot I left my gun under the seat. They called me and asked if I was missing anything. Um, let me think. I have my purse, wallet, compact. Oh wait, my gun! Yeah, that was fun explaining.

    Also I one time bought a used car, guess what I found in it? Nope, not a gun. A little metal box full of marijuana. Yep right stashed in the trunk of my little Fiat Spider in 1978 was a metal box full of ganja, mary jane, dope, wildwood weed.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. That pepper spray I told you about that comes in the glitter case. Fifteen dollars. Buy two. One you keep in your purse. The other where you feel the least safe. Or, buy one bundled with a pink glitter heart! It’s the “Super Cute Self Defense Set, 115 Db Personal Safety Alarm and Police Strength Pepper Spray with UV Marking Dye Bundle”. $25.95 https://buff.ly/2Znk5Ub


  18. I feel panicky about making a grocery list for you. I want to, though. I was going to vote for cheese because it’s delicious on burgers and on noodles. Eggs, too. Maybe some vegetables? Zucchini and yellow squash are cheap right now. You could get some lettuce and use that poppy seed dressing on a salad of squash and lettuce and cheese.

    Also, my thoughts about the ring aligned with someone else’s about pawning or selling it for the gold value. Because I thought you were going to ask us to pick out something frivolous for your with your $30, I say get what you can for it and buy something frivolous. Maybe let us vote on that, too.


  19. All of you guys are so nice and honest. I would take that ring to a pawn shop and get some cash for it. Gold prices are high, so that will give you way more than $30, then you can eat whatever you want!

    Liked by 1 person

  20. BTW you can see the fireflies on the video.

    Per June’s request:


    1/2-3/4 cup sugar (option 2T sugar and 3 packets Stevia)
    1/2 cup cider vinegar
    1-1/4 cup salad oil (I use robust olive oil)
    1 medium onion chopped
    2T prepared mustard
    1T poppy seeds

    Beat together all ingredients EXCEPT the poppy seeds until the sugar is dissolved; then add poppy seeds.

    Do NOT store in refrigerator, pure olive oil is disgusting when it gets cold. Just store in the pantry.



      • Not to sound like Pam – but, the olive oil bottle will actually use the word “robust” on the label. It is usually less expensive than the first cold-press olive oil and great for salad dressings. Enjoy!


      • On the label of olive oil it will says robust, which is good for salad dressing, there’s another term that I can’t recall at the moment, that’s good for sauteing. A small bottle of olive oil will cost you $7, so maybe homemade thousand island will work, mayo, ketchup and chopped dill pickles.


    • I have a clean spaghetti jar I keep in fridge to hold all the little packets of mustard, ketchup, soy sauce, etc that comes with takeout. You’ll be be surprised how handy this will be when you are ready to eat and the mustard is is empty. Salad dressing too, all you need is bagged lettuce.


  21. I don’t have anything to add, just that all these ideas sound wonderful!

    So sorry about your step-grandmother, June.


  22. Check your neighborhood and see if there is some sort of postal or Boy Scout good drive where people leave food on the mailbox. Your dilemma may be moot…


  23. I still miss my 1991 Dodge minivan. I loved that vehicle, but after 254,000+ miles it needed another transmission, which would have cost more than the value of the car. Wouldn’t you love to know the story about the gold ring! Was it accidentally lost, was it removed in rage after a decision to leave, so many scenarios.

    Suggestion for meals: can of tuna to put over a bag salad, a cucumber to add to the salad, jar of spaghetti sauce and ground beef for the noodles. That would probably be enough to feed you the rest of the week. Boiled eggs can make egg salad for sandwiches (I use dill pickle relish in egg salad or when I stuff eggs) for lunch or peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, yum. You have popcorn, who needs food when you have that, but you will need a Coke with the popcorn. Maybe a couple of small cans of food for Edsel, we don’t want that boy to be hungry.


  24. Cheese and butter to buy. To eat cook hamburgers but unhamburger them so ground beef – put in casserole dish, mix up eggs pour over top add cheese (cook in oven) – tada meals for four days – then toast and butter bread with some garlic power tada – instant garlic bread side to go with it or alternatively buy milk, syrup and bacon make french toast with bacon, hamburgers on bread or make a peanut sauce with peanut butter, red pepper flakes pour over noodles – you may never have to grocery shop again – I do this a lot what can I make with what is in my cupboard…I would say half the time it is great – the other half wished I went to the grocery store and bought everything I could


  25. Noodles and eggs! Family fave. Cook the spaghetti noodles, drain. Whisk a few eggs in a bowl, heat a little butter or olive in a pan, then dump the noodles and whisked eggs in and cook together. Add any herbs you like or leave those out. Cook until noodles are a tad crispy with egg. Salt and pepper,. Delish.


  26. I love these suggestions!!! I need to do this kind of stuff because my daughter’s car might need a new transmission and I don’t want to burn though my emergency fund on fixing a car that’s not mine (she’s also putting money toward the repair). And I don’t want to work overtime because I can barely tolerate working the hours I’m required to right now.


  27. I am very upset about the ring! I think you can find out previous owners through CarFax? Probably not, but maybe the dealership THAT MADE YOU THROW AWAY THE PRECIOUS INFORMATION, can research it somehow. They should at least TRY.

    Liked by 2 people

  28. As can of tomatoes, an onion, frozen peppers, and 2 kaisers.

    Spaghetti, quiche, hamburgers.

    Enough food for lunches and dinners. $7


  29. Get some salad items, Alfredo sauce, chicken and bacon. You can have breakfast one night, a burger one night and chicken Alfredo the last night and the salads can be for lunch.

    Liked by 1 person

  30. First off, I have to say I’m sorry about your step-grandma. I completely forgot that in my riveting commentary yesterday about cleaning products. It’s hard when you’re an expert to keep track of all you need to say.

    Also too thank you to everyone who shared their favorite cleaning products – I saw lots of support for my favorite, Dawn dish soap. I forgot the laundry tip, but I use that all the time. Weird spot? Put Dawn on it and wash it again. Works every time. And I’m totally getting that Barkeepers Friend next time I shop!

    And now for today. Let’s see – you have the makings of three kinds of sandwich: peanut butter, egg, and a couple of hamburgers. So maybe another loaf of bread. If you add milk, you could make french toast. And we totally eat burgers on bread if I have extras of each and don’t want to upset the balance of the universe by buying a whole dozen more buns (now I need more BURGERS!) I don’t know how you like your burgers, but maybe a couple slices of cheese from the deli (ask to sample it and then don’t eat it! Bring a baggie and stick it in your purse! haha!) and then pop into your favorite fast food joint and pilfer a few packets of ketchup. Maybe buy an onion. Spaghetti noodles could be turned into peanut noodles with your peanut butter. You’d need a few vegetables (even some green onions would make that perfect!) and some soy sauce (hit up the local Chinese carry out and get some freebies! This is genius!) and a bit of red pepper flakes (pizza place!) and that would be delicious. Unless you hate peanut noodles. Hard boil a few eggs and get some mayo (FREE! from some sandwich place) and you’ve got some egg salad!

    Now I’m hungry.


  31. Lovely post, pretty June!

    Hit the dollar store for a jar of sauce to go with the noodles?
    Since you’re there, our dollar store usually has burritos on sale 2/$1 and they make great lunches.
    Plan a couple of breakfast for dinner with the eggs/bread – French toast or omelets?
    Hard boil a few of the eggs for snack and get a couple apples to go with the peanut butter?


  32. A jar of marinara, a bag of pre-mixed salad, salad dressing, some frozen french fries or tater tots if you prefer. You could also buy some tuna or some deli meat to make sandwiches. That should only cost around $15-20.


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