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May Budget – Hope

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I have revised my monthly budget for our current circumstances and for this current month. While it doesn’t completely eliminate the drain from my savings. My stable of clients who require work every month is growing steadily.

Monthly Budget – May

Hope's Monthly Budget - May

Eliminated Expenses (temporary)

You will notice some line that were included in previous budgets have been removed at least temporarily:

  • Gymnastics – I have worked out an arrangement with the gym for four months (April-July,) buying me a little time to get back on my feet.  I am so grateful for their willingness to work with me.
  • Health Insurance – After draining the bulk of my savings over the last 3 1/2 months, we now qualify for Medicaid. The qualification is good for a year (based on income) and just began this month. Again, a temporary measure.
  • Food – In addition to the health insurance help, we now qualify for food stamps.  It’s a six months qualification, also beginning this month and also dependent on income. I don’t imagine we will qualify for long if I am able to continue to grow my business steadily. But for now, it takes a huge load off.
  • Credit Card – I continue to roll the credit card. This means, I am paying on the credit card and then turning around and paying bills with it. It is definitely my #1 debt goal to pay off this credit card as my income increases.

Annual Payments

I did not include quarterly or annual payments in this snapshot budget. First, none of them are due this month. Secondly, because with such a high deficit still in income versus spending, I can only take one month at a time. I can’t look at the big picture right now.

The payments I am referencing are:

  • Life Insurance (paid quarterly)
  • Certain Business expenses (most paid at the end of the year)
  • Amazon Prime (renews in September) speaking of that, what do you think of the increase in the cost for the Prime service?
  • and more that I can’t even thing of right now.

Income

I have broken down my income based on my three current clients who require regular work. These amounts are the minimums contracted for each month and in each case the amount may vary. And by vary I mean may increase. For instance, one client has contracted a minimum of 10 hours per week at $17 per hour, but this past week, I invoiced for over 25 hours.

In addition, I continued to seek out and pick up project work such as website development. I have just completed a brand new, large e-commerce site and am finishing up a local flooring company’s site. The project income will vary from month to month.

Expense Elimination

I realize there are still some extras in my budget, specifically, Netflix and Universal. To be honest, Netflix is something we use ALL the time. Since our extra budget is $0 with a capital 0…having the option to watch movies or shows is kind of nice.

As for the Universal passes, it’s me clinging to the someday when travel returns to our lives. But I know I need to cancel it. If I can’t return to the black back the end of the summer, I will cancel it. I just need to cling to that hope a little bit longer.

 


Unplanned Spending

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Well, you guys called it!

On my budget post a lot of people commented that we should build in a “Miscellaneous” category for those undoubtedly unplanned expenses that would pop up. No sooner did you say it, than I received this notice from my kids’ kinder classroom:

I covered up the name of the school for privacy reasons.

They want $15 per scholar (we have twins, so $30 for both) to participate in a special ceramic art thing. My mom has taken the girls to a ceramics store in the past and I recall it being crazy pricey (going off memory – and I’m not the one who paid – but I want to say it was close to $40-50 each). So I know that $15/student really isn’t a bad deal. But, of course, it’s something we didn’t budget or plan for and both kids are BEGGING to be included in the art activity. So….we’ll end up paying the $30 and letting them participate. Sigh.

On the bright side, we’ve been doing really well with our food budget so far. I know we’re only 4 days into the month, but I’m tracking every single penny and plan to do weekly updates to help hold me accountable. I got a little hammered on how crazy/inflated our food budget is (as I was expecting), and I’ve made it my personal goal to slash the category by at least 20%. It will take a little creativity, but I know it can be done (or…..as many commenters posted…maybe it takes no creativity at all??? Like, instead of being “creative”, we’ll be having chicken, chicken, and more chicken. And when we get sick of chicken, perhaps a sloppy joe or spaghetti night. lol. Really though – I appreciate all the tips and suggestions!)

Hopefully we’ll save enough on our food budget that this unplanned $30 expense won’t be a big deal.

If your kids have a “special” activity at school that costs extra money, do you let them participate? Would you set a limit on how much you’d spend? 

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