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My weekly budget

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The budget talks with my husband have been resolved via a compromise.  As of June 1, we are adding a separate grocery budget of $125 per week (remember we had been taking our grocery money out of the $200 spending) and then each keeping our respective $200.  This effectively increases weekly spending money by about $50-$60.  I still wanted to push for more cut backs but the warning signs of jumping off the debt payoff ship were evident so this is a good compromise. I anticipate with time we will add more budget line items like kids, clothing, gas, fitness, etc….but this is where we are now.

The discussion about budgets did, however, prompt me to write out how I plan to spend my $200.  I got a free app “budget envelopes” and have created virtual envelopes to track how my $200 is spent.  For this week I am still buying 1/2 of the groceries with this money.  Thankfully it is a small grocery need week with lots of meals already available at home and with the kids at lots of events where meals are provided!  My $200 is broken down like this: 

$25 to clothing

$30 to kids

$50 to the van (gas and hopefully building up an account for oil changes and the like)

$10 to dry cleaning (so that I can get about $30 done per month and rollover the rest)

$25 to yoga (saving toward buying a package so I save more per class)

$60 leftover for groceries and “spend.”  My plan is to reduce that spend money each week as I get better at this.  

As of today, I have spent $0 of the clothing money, $15 for the kids ($5 to a scout event, $10 for two birthday gifts for parties), $40 on gas, $46.00 of the cash (of which $37.50 has been groceries), $0 of the dry cleaning and $0 of the yoga money.That’s $101 and have $99 remaining.  Of that $99, there is only $14.00 remaning in the “spend” column.  I really should not need more than $14 for things but my goodness does seeing only $14 there make you stop and think!  I REALLY want to have at least $90 remaining on Friday!  That would be so cool to go into the next week with that rollover fund starting! 

Another benefit I noted–yesterday I had to come up to the office for about 3 hours.  I brought 7-year-old DD with me and as we left the house she was suddenly hungry.  I DID remember to bring snacks but noted that this is a withdrawal process for DD and so…I agreed to stop for a snack and then as I drove to the office, she was in charge of inputting the deduction for that snack!  When she saw the spending money go from $18 to $14 she didn’t think much….until we were returning home and again she wanted to stop!  I reminded her of our budget line and she quickly said “we have snacks right here…we should just go home.”  She didn’t like it but WOW what a moment!!!  I must employ this method with the older ones ASAP just so they get the “hands on” part of it.  Although I recognize they won’t be nearly as cooperative or excited as she was about the whole thing!

So this is my newest addition to the process.  Steve isn’t biting on this one but he says he does have part of his $200 set aside.  I think giving each of us total control over the $200 is reasonable although I still don’t think it necessary.   Time will tell.

 

Claire

Born and raised in Texas.I've at least driven through every state in the US courtesy of a roadtrip loving Dad.

I'm single with two children and a good parenting relationship with their father.

I am a "life is just half full of funny" kinda gal.Humor is my saving grace and I am thankful for it every single day.I have a strong Catholic faith and am thankful for that foundation.
I read a lot for a living but still enjoy a good book.I love biographies but in recent years have found the need for fun fictional books--sadly, for a long time I just didn't enjoy fiction!
I love live theatre of any kind--from local productions to Broadway.
I love to scrapbook and pride myself in my kids' albums.
I love being a mom but also love my career.I'm blessed to have found a balance allowing me to be at everything my kids need and want me to be at--while also having a career.
Favorite Quotes:Well behaved women rarely make history.
Behold the turtle.He makes progress only when he sticks his neck out. -James Bryant Conant

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4 Comments

  • Reply Anette |

    Definitely allow your husband to control his whole $200. It is vital. We paid off 80K worth of dent last year (not a blogger so no story to find sorry) and one of the reasons it went so well is he had some areas of control too. Every Saturday morning we went for coffee – I showed him our finance picture and we took allowance out of the bank. He was interested in our finances like never before. But the allowance was essential since I was the one `holding` all the other money. The coffee was cheap – like MacDonalds sometimes early in the morning before other Saturday activities or kid chauffering sometimes in the afternoon but as you can imagine the conversations were varied and treasured. In fact if we missed one he would usually remark that he felt out of touch!

  • Reply jaye |

    Regarding dry cleaning, I don’t know how much you usually do, but we’ve managed to change things so that we almost never bring anything to the dry cleaners. My husband wears non-iron shirts (many found “as new” at our local Salvation Army or bought on eBay – Jos. A Bank and Brooks Brothers are the best). Also, I bought one of those home dry cleaning kits. They actually work very well. It saves a lot of money.

  • Reply Diane |

    Do you each spend separately for groceries? Wouldn’t it be more efficient if one person was in charge of shopping for groceries and spent out of the one cash envelope for groceries? So are you saying that $125 a week is budgeted for groceries and that you each have $200 for extras, (which includes gas, etc?) I am wondering if you would like Dave Ramsey’s $0 budget where you tell each dollar ahead of time where it is going to go. Doesn’t mean you can’t spend it, just the system tells your dollars where they are going. You are doing a great job of being aware of your spending, and I love reading this blog and watching your progress.

So, what do you think ?