Friday, January 2, 2009

On Day Two of Budgeting I am NOT Overwhelmed, Next Week I Might Be.

Happy New Years, everyone! It has been a whirlwind of a couple weeks, so let me apologize right now for having gone missing. I am slowly catching up with my blog reading, and y'all know that I have tons of photos to load into this here blog from the hollerdays. (Did I mention my step-sister is here from Mississippi and I have developed a slight twang? Heh.)

I recently relinquished control of my household.

I took over the bills, something that I let Big Daddy take over three years ago. I was being a lazy douche, because really? Who doesn't love to have money in their bank account? I was at a point where I would have rather let the money sit in the bank all month and make the bank think we were rich, than pay a bill.

Don't get me wrong, I paid some of the bills, just not all of them (usually the utilities). It was a horrible time in my life, we had just moved to a new town and I was bored and you could have pegged me for a depressed person, even though I always kept my shiny, happy exterior (this is however the point in life where I became 80 pounds heavier, so shiny happy exterior is more referring to my attitude and facial expressions.)...

So let me get to the point.

I paid all our bills, set aside money for the bills that are automatically deducted from our account in the middle of the month, and went to the ATM to take out cash for the groceries for the whole month.

I have no idea what I am doing, really.

I withdrew $320 for groceries for the month. I have no clue if this is going to be enough money to eat on, so there is other monies set aside, just in case. Also, this does not include the $100 I set aside for dining out. Nor does it include the $150 I set aside for toiletries (I have no idea what is included in toiletries, but I imagine that it is all the taxable items that we use.)

So my question to you, my dear friends, is this: How much do you spend, either weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly on groceries? Do you budget? Do you use coupons? Where do you get your most bang for the buck?


MarvelousMOM said...

I need to get better on budgeting and we need to stop eating out so much. If you learn some good tricks, let me know!

I've Got e-Mail said...

I have a detailed budget that I try to stick to each month. (Doesn't always happen...)

When I set it up, I took the advice of a friend and for a month before I wrote down every dime we spent and what we spent it on. Then I was able to get a general idea of how much to budget for. I also wrote down all the bills that come in a few times a year instead of monthly (like the trash bill and the water bill and the car insurance bill) and made sure to budget for those as well.

Unbelieveably, it does seem to work.

Good luck!

The Fishers said...

I must admit I have nothing whatsoever to do with the bills. at all. I do, however, do the grocery shopping and we spend about $150 for two weeks at a time, that usually includes toiletries and whatnot, so it sounds like you could be fine.

Bray Family said...

Budgets work, sticking to them is tough. I'm in no position to give financial advice/input... but I wish you luck. The first 90 days will be the hardest.

Ellie said...

happy new years!!! hooray! time to start over! good luck with the budgeting! i know you can do it!

jennyonthespot said...

I don't know! We are starting to batten down the hatches FA REAL now, so I will know soon... I am pretty sure I spend too much right now... Good timing for this post - at least for me... It'll be interesting to see what people say. And I am interested in what you learn!

mamikaze said...

Here's what I did: I made a list of the meals we usually ate for breakfast and dinner plus a list of school lunch supplies.
I went to the grocery store and walked around and took down the regular prices. I added up how much I usually buy for two weeks (that's how much my cabinets hold) and then added $50 to that for how much I needed each payday for groceries.

Vic said...

I admit that I have no clue whatsoever. Luckily the majority of the bills I cover come out at the beginning of the month and the husband takes care of his side whenever and however he does it. As for spending we just seem to keep going until we're scraping around the bottom of the barrel at the end of the month.
Perhaps our new motto for this year should be 'must get better'.

Rachel said...

I am not good at budgeting but I always try to save. Yeah I am one one to ask but I always admire those who are great at that stuff. Good luck Paloma!

Grandy said...

Winco baby!! You could shop at Walmart but they SUCK!! Winco Rocks the buck!!

I've never been big on the budget thing but need to be. Grandy had one hell of a wake up call tonight in the financial arena.

Mrs. F said...

MarvelousMOM~ Eating out was KILLING our bank account. I have tried planning out my meals at the beginning of the week before I do the weekly shopping.

I've Got e-mail~ Thanks for the advice. I have a lot of fixing to do. I have tried your idea and have written everything down. Thank you!

Fisher lady~ $150 is not bad at all. I am impressed.

JT~ Sticking to the budget is very tough. I just realized that I have no idea how we have been getting by without me having a job. Funny how wide my eyes have been opened.

Ellie~ Thank you!!!! Happy New Year!

Jennyonthespot~ I think the best thing I did from the beginning was the grocery budget. I did not realize how many times a week I was going to the store. Meal planning has definitely helped.

Mamikaze~ I went the much less organized route, but I really like your idea a lot better. I do find myself scouring the weekly ads for what meats are on sale and whatnot. It is turning into a game for me!

Vic~ That has always been how we lived, scraping the bottom of the barrel at the end of the month. I wonder if we will ever get past that point...

Rachel~ Thank you!

Grandy~ I took your advice and gave WinCo a try. Whew. Never again on a Saturday afternoon, that is for sure, but I did find a ton of great prices on things we actually use, so thank you!

mommymommyland said...

Uh, Budgeting. For me that has been an interesting point for the past several years, I have always been in charge of the bills so if they don't get paid it is my fault, but all I ever get to do is cut the budget. We do not have an eating out fund, nor a toiletries fund, or an entertainment fun unless someone gifts us one. I pay a little over on our mortgage every month, and then every 6 months or so try to find new and fantastic ways of cutting back. I hope you are never in need of my type of budget help. If so just email me, I have charts to help.