My financial months go from my pay period one month to the next. That is normally from the 15th to the 15th. This month we got paid a week early because the 15th is going to fall during our spring break. Since some people still get paper paychecks, they have to offer them available for pickup during regular hours. This means our last month (Feb/Mar) was rather short, but that our upcoming month (Mar/Apr) is going to be an extra week. Luckily the month of March is a 3 paycheck month for Hubs (he gets paid every other week). The three paychecks fall during our Mar/Apr month, so even though it’s longer, we will have a little extra cushion, even though I hope to not use any.
I just updated my sidebars from paying everything in Feb/Mar, but I am really excited about our next payment on the Chase bill because that will bring it below $2,000! Woo-hoo! Also our car loan is under $17,000. It is still a lot of money, but each milestone is a celebration!
Feb/Mar ended up being an interesting month. We had to dip into savings, but still came out with more in than we started with. We also had to pay almost $600 in medical bills along with our regular bills. I have to say that I am super happy that we managed to not accrue anymore debt and didn’t dip too much into savings to really hurt us.
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I am hesitant about showing our fixed bills and income, so I am leaving you with our incidentals. The categories that have dates next to them we use the cash/envelope system for. The dates tell me when to take the cash out of our account. The Column C tells you what is budgeted. Column D tells you what was actually spent, and Column E tells you whether we were over or under, and by how much. I put comments in Column F to remind myself of purchases or certain things that I need to remember.
A few things to note:
Eating out and groceries seem to always be a problem. We spent more eating out in this short month than we did in Jan/Feb. Not good! I have been trying to reel it in, but it hasn’t been working very well.
Medical: I had to pick up a couple things from the drug store. I had some money in the medical envelope from a while ago, but I forgot to bring it. Oops!
Miscellaneous: $32.00 of it was reimbursed. Some coworkers and I do a walking challenge each spring, and I am the captain. I wrote one check for all the registrations, and they each paid me. Another big chunk of this was due to going to a thirty-one party. I received two of these bags for Christmas and they are very durable. I wanted a reusable lunch tote (I currently have one, but send Hubs’ lunches in paper bags– I will give him my current, plain green one, and I will have a pretty one). I also got a notepad with pen holder/coupon holder for my purse, and a little basket thing. These weren’t needs by any means, but they were wants. I sometimes feel if you are too tight with a budget and don’t give yourself any wiggle room, you will drive yourself crazy. I do not want to be crazy.
I still owe $20 to our Car Tags envelope. I got the wrong amount out at the ATM and haven’t made it back. I have a Car Tags envelope because our first year of marriage (and with our new car) we were blindsided with how expensive it was to get our car tags renewed. I didn’t want to let that happen to us ever again. Since that year, we have had this envelope. After this year I will turn it into an ING Orange Savings Account, but don’t want to deal with the hassle of depositing the money into our checking account, transferring the money, then transferring back, getting out cash, and finally paying for the tags in cash in June.
I owe $1 to Entertainment, but probably won’t put it in there. We paid for the Hunger Games tickets online which were $17.00. Then I had $2.00 in cash from a milk bottle return at the grocery store. I stuck the $2.00 in the envelope, but didn’t have a final $1 to make it break even. Oh well!
The baby envelope is something I started when I was pregnant before. Instead of getting rid of it when I miscarried, we have continued to put money towards a little future nugget. Someday we will get to use that money, but for now it just sits safely there waiting.
I think that is it. Long, boring post, but necessary to keep me accountable. If you have any questions about how I came up with certain amounts or anything like that, just ask me in the comments section, and I will be happy to answer them!
Hope your finances are going swimmingly!