Saturday, February 28, 2009

Do You Budget?

I know, I know. I sound like a broken record lately. It's either dieting, being sick, or budgeting (with a little Fireproof! - that's the comment I just got from my daughter...). But I am curious. Do you budget? If you attempt to budget, do you think you do a good job? Is there something that you've learned along the way that you think someone else might find to be helpful? Anything you've done that you wish you had not?

I'll admit it - I have an insane respect for people who budget and STICK to IT. I think it's hard to stay on budget, especially when you are working with only one income. I can think back to the days when I was employed at the airline and the insane amount of money that they paid me to do what I did - and I'm shocked that we didn't do a better job at managing a budget. We would be much better off today if we had really focused on saving money back then. Built up our nest egg so to speak. But like all young, newly married couples....we just bought whatever we wanted. Sure, I had a closet full of the cutest clothes and more shoes than I could ever have possible worn within a good month's time, but we didn't' do a great job of saving up for a rainy day.

Today we find ourselves dealing with a budget and one income. I think since the time that I left the airline until this year, there has only been one year that I did not work in some capacity - that was when The Bug was in 2nd grade. I started subbing when she was in 3rd grade and have been pretty busy at that until this past year. With my school schedule during the fall semester and the budget cuts that our local Board of Education have imposed, subbing's not really a money maker right now. I laughed yesterday when I checked the mail box. I had a pay check...and my bill for the tag renewal on the van. Needless to say - I will have cleared maybe 50 cents after emissions and purchasing my tag. The Bug wanted to know what was so funny... I told her that God always provides when you're faithful. The check is enough to pay for my tag and the tests that are required this year.

This morning I was relaying that story to Hubs over breakfast and we started talking about budgeting. I told him about my good friend who pays $200 on her power bill each and every month (she has a good budgeting system - she should share it - hint hint) and we were discussing what our monthly expenses were last year. Hence forth came the topic for this bloggy post this weekend. Do you budget? Do you wish you could stick to a budget? Or do you wish you could get orange juice from a turnip? (I had to throw that in there to see if you were paying attention now!).

Leave a comment. Advice. Complaints. The floor is yours. Inquiring minds wanna know....

1 comment:

Slacker MOM II said...

I have 2 words for you, missy...
DAVE RAMSEY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

After many many years of having 2 incomes, we had to live on one income. Like you, we squandered away all of our money on foolish but we needed those items. About 6 months ago, I decided that we needed to do something. I want the finer things in life. Instead of paying $60.00 for electric in the winter and $400.00 in the summer, I took my monthly bills for the past year, added, then averaged out. The total came to $178 a month. I then went to the $200.00 because of increases. I did the same for our gas. I paid what needed to be paid.

I then heard of Dave Ramsey. I read his book. I then tailored my monthly budget to fit my needs. In order for my budget to work, it needed to be realistic. I find myself at the end of the month, having money left over. That goes directly into a savings account at the credit union.

Email if you want to hear more of my budget savings.

Call me later if you want the book to borrow. It is great and very fast reading....