Let’s start this entry off with a fact: I can save money but I am just as good at spending it. & one is more than the other— && not the one it should be!
This past year I made the most money I’ve ever made. It was nice! This girl put back around 13% in retirement, saved a little in an account for my son and my savings. But there was also the fun side, ya know what I like to call ten months of 2016. We’re talking trips (10 day road trip to Yellowstone!, NYC for 7 days, Chicago NUMEROUS times, New Orleans, Mississippi Coast, Louisville….). When I would go grocery shopping 88% of the time without a list. The cart fills up and I just swipe my card, pick up a pizza on the way home, and in three days think why the hell we have no food I just spent $150! And in two weeks throw 30% of it away. My sister had her first child and I threw her a baby shower out of state. I paid for the venue, catering, gifts, and so on! My shopping habits were just as disgusting. The lifetime of beauty products and at the moment cannot fit them in my house physically anymore and probabbbbbllllyyyy won’t be able to use them all before I die. Amazon, oh Amazon. I kinda always thought if they would just work like a 401k they’d make double what they make now. Just take it out of my check! You’re gonna get it anyway! I’ve never in anyway been addicted to drugs except Amazon. & I probably should have checked myself into a program. Two day shipping makes me throw it in my cart every time. Christmas….yeah’ glad that is over too says the lady with a 10 year old who has everything and literally cannot think of what to even ask Santa for.
Then in July the man I love asked me to marry him. After nearly 7 years, I got the one thing I’ve been waiting for! (insert awwwww). Did I mention in just a few months I turn the ripe age of 30?! So much “life” has hit me all of a sudden. It felt like the past few months I’ve really reflected on how much I have, what I want, and how to get there. After the Christmas season and my monies started to grow a little the fiance and I talked “life.” I knew my habits needed to change before, but now they needed to change. No more talk! We are on the same page. We want the same things. What we would love more than anything is to save and build a home in the country debt free within the next five years. And one day have myself a little homestead. It’s all we want. (And also along the way save 15% of our income in our 401k and invest in a roth IRA annually.)
Long story short I’ve grown over the last year or so. I realized I’m an emotional shopper. I get a high from it. I have some pretty bad habits. Talking about how I have a good job, and no debt like that effin’ makes me somebody. Sitting in my car every day listening to Dave Ramsey thinking about how “Phew how can these people have gotten themselves in such a hole?!” But the truth is; I was goalless. Who the heck do I think I am to judge anyone else? Here I am reaching for nothing, wasting so much more when I could be saving! January 1st came around and we started a savings account together to automatically withdraw the money to save towards the home. We set a goal and we started the road to it.
I felt something I never realized I felt from shopping before. A high that didn’t make me feel crappy 2 hours after I got home like I did shopping.
It has given me such momentum that I’ve really analyzed what I’ve been spending vs. what I should be spending, as well as saving.
Roughly that is what I’ve spent a month after taking home around $2,300.00. Give or take (I try to pick up OT all the time.) I can guarantee I am not saving most of that $1,000 before January 1st. My bills aren’t even typical have to spend bills, I’m blessed and wasting it! I can modify that list significantly.
With that said I’ve started a Budget. I’m throwing the “B” word around like I know what the hell I’m talking about. I don’t. Never had one before. Currently I’m going through a training program I’m figuring out along the way. I purchased the Dave Ramsey envelopes months ago. Finally, I am using them. Each one is marked and cash filled. My wallet with all my cards except my debit and one credit will be at my mothers so I don’t even see them!
From today until February 1st I have work pretty much. Beyond gas and/or a gallon of milk I doubt I make anymore purchases. February 1st I start my first month on a budget (see how I made it the shortest month of the year ;D !–just kidding!)
- Car Insurance $140 (this is going increase, picking up a new company with better coverage, and a life insurance policy.)
- Newspaper $15 (if I don’t utilize it for at least $15 in coupons I get out of this month–I am cutting it)
- Verizon $205 I pay my teenage brothers half which has really jacked it up due to keeping a large data plan attached. This is fair compensation in my eyes for the babysitting he does as well as my mother.
- Hulu, $8 I pay for it without ads. I can cut $4 if I add them back on.
- Netflix, $27 I can cut out $12 because of the movie plan we haven’t used in probably 2 years!
- School lunch $30. This is not something I can’t argue the kid won’t take a lunch, but maybe I can convince him to try taking one again but it doesn’t bother me.
- Itunes $3 this is to maintain storage on my son’s ipad, pennies well spent.
- Spotify $11 for my sanity. I loveeee spotify and listen to is daily.
- Misc Credit Cards…. from my lovely shopping trips. I pay them off in full every month. But this is on crap I don’t NEED. $0 in February.
- Groceries $300 I’ll keep it right now at $300, hopefully I spend less.
- Gas $150.00, I imagine it’s less, I’ll keep better documentation of what I actually spend.
- Pets 100.00, and what I don’t spend will be put away for future Vet/Medicine.
- I will also keep $100 every check put up for any medical purposes.
Total Monthly Budget Allowance: $993.00 / goal $850.00
House Goal: 128,000
$ to GO: $125,000