I want to come clean about something… Contrary to popular beliefs, I am not Susie Homemaker. I know. You just fell out of your seat from shock. I did not mean to spring that on you so quickly, but I needed to clear that up.
I do not like cleaning, cooking, chores, etc. Hubby and I have a chore list and I definitely fall down on my part. I enjoy organizing, but I do not like cleaning. I would rather walk into a complete mess and get to start from scratch and organize it and put it away and make it pretty, rather than haul out my cleaning products and scrub my bathroom (or kitchen or any other room). Don’t get me wrong, I do not live in an apartment of filth. It does get cleaned, but I do not like doing it.
Big props to the hubby… Last week I came home from work and the entire apartment was sparkly clean. In his words… Everything that could be cleaned, was cleaned… except for the dog. (I did that job over the weekend).
I also hate cooking. I have tried and tried to enjoy it. I have tried to make it a fun experience, but it simply is not an enjoyable activity. You spend time working and getting hot, and what’s it for? 5 minutes of eating enjoyment. Unfortunately, this hate of cooking really got us in a lot of trouble financially. I would come home from work and would spout one of a number of excuses: I was too tired, I didn’t have everything I needed to cook, nothing was thawed out, nothing sounded good. I was full of excuses! And because Hubby enjoys eating out, as I do, we would often go out to eat. Last year we ate out at least 3-4 times a week, if not more. Fast food, restaurants, take out, delivery… it didn’t matter, we ate it. Luckily Hubby and I were not outwardly affected by all of this unhealthy food. I cringe to think of what it did out our cholesterol, blood pressure, arteries, etc. I know exactly what it did to our budget and it was not pretty.
One of the worst parts was that I would menu plan for the week, and in true resolutionist form, I would resolve to eat in the entire week and change our eating ways. It didn’t work! I didn’t have the discipline or the desire to really change… until now. Since we moved to a tiny town, we do not have access to many places to eat. Here is our list: Subway, Sonic, Gambino’s Pizza, BBQ Joint, and some random restaurants (no big chains). We did have a Dairy Queen, but it caught fire and is currently out of commission. Because of our limited choices, I have been forced to cook dinner. I menu plan on Fridays or Saturdays, grocery shop for the week, and have food to eat all week. This is the first month since we have been married, that we have stayed on track with our eating out budget. We did borrow money from other areas a couple nights, but we were able to do that because we have been on or under budget with everything so far. I actually enjoy eating out now and it is a treat for us. No more excuses! I still don’t like cooking, but I know it is imperative for us in order to keep on budget.
Here is a look at where we were at the past few months with our eating out budget (it has changed the past month in order to prepare us for the increase in rent coming up):
February: Budget $80.00 Actual Spent $166.04
March: Budget $80.00 Actual Spent $277.47
April: Budget $40.00 Actual Spent $38.82
We cut our eating out budget in half and we are under!! Now, we did borrow money from other areas to eat out, but even with those added in we are at $79.68. We borrowed $29 from our entertainment budget in order to have pizza one night (which gave us leftovers forever) and we borrowed $11.68 from our grocery budget in order to have fast food one night. Before borrowing from another area, I always check to make sure that it is ok with Hubby. He usually doesn’t mind and we are good to go!
I will do a complete budget check-in on the 1st or 2nd of May and let you know how we did for the month. I think it looks great so far!
Do you have trouble eating out or do you love cooking and eating in?