So I caved under the sales at JCPenney. I’m weak. However I would like to note I spent much less than I normally would have. I bought 2 blouses and 1 pair of exercise pants. Total with the sale and the 20% off was only $46. Then I ate at Sarku. That was really the whole reason I went to the mall.
So I’m starting now, no clothing or shoes purchases. Nothing. Nada. I have plenty of clothes and shoes. More than plenty. I’m going to purge a few more items that I don’t wear and/or make me uncomfortable (don’t fit, ugly, etc.).
Currently my budget looks like this:
Income: $2850 (per month)
Rent/Groceries: $1255.00 (I live at home so I just contribute towards all expenses)
Auto (Gas): $80
Business Services: $100
Food and Dining: $200
Dentist Loan: $400 ($2866 remaining)
Medical: $150 (HSA Reimburses this amount.)
Add to Savings: $420
Total Expenses Budgeted: $2850 – (I’m trying to do the Dave Ramsey budget every penny model.)
Regarding my savings. I’m working towards getting a hefty savings built up. I’d like to get a 6 month cushion built up. Then on top of it I’d like to start saving for a car. I want to get where I’m saving around $800 – 900 per month. Once I’m done with my Dentist loan that will help. And then with my cutting out purchases that should also push me towards that goal. Food and Dining are the next to take a big cut. This needs to come way down to help me reach my savings goal.
So for the month of January I’ve already spent around $200 on purchases. However I’ve created a new budget item called Business Services. I’ve recently started trying to sell some of my crochet items on Etsy. I’ve actually sold one thing. However I had to create a budget for fees and supplies for this endeavor. So I set up a budget of $100 per month.
Yes I’ve already blown it for this month.
But I have a good reason. My sister works for someone who needed some new logo apparel for their business. And I offered to try to come up with a new logo and use my embroidery machine to do up some shirts and sweatshirts. So I needed supplies for this. However, I’ve learned even more about the cost of being cluttered. I didn’t take inventory of what I already had. After I purchased things from Joann’s and Amazon, I found that I already had some of the things that I thought I would need. So I now have some duplicates. However I’m chalking that up to a learning experience as well and am getting myself more organized so this doesn’t happen again.
Additional purchases were made for our “Go-Bags”. Some call these “Bug-Out” bags. These are some first aid and food kits that we put together a while back in case of emergency at our home or even if we had to evacuate. I thought the items needed to be refreshed. We put these together about 5 years ago. I couldn’t believe when I saw the expiration date on the first aid stuff that it had been that long. So I had to do some unexpected purchases of stuff for those. Then my mother and I tested some of the MRE’s to see if they were going to work for us. We were curious how bad they would be. They actually weren’t bad. We both agreed that we could live on them. However, there was one that tasted so bad we each only gave one taste and threw it away. It was an Indian dish. Muttar something. It was bad. And I like Indian food. This tasted… not like Indian food. So we took those out of the bags and made sure we had some good ones. The vegetable stew with beef was very tasty. Then there was some shredded potatoes with bacon that were yummy. So I reorganized those and they are back in our closet. However I just received the first aid items that I need to load into the kits, so they’ll have to come out one more time.
Other than that there haven’t been any purchases. (There were a few that were left overs from last month. Hautelook items sometimes don’t ship for a month or two, so even though I purchased them last month, they reflect on this month’s budget.) I’ve controlled myself well. I’ve been putting things on my wishlist on Amazon, to revisit at another time and see if I still want them. I also went through my wishlist and cleaned it up. There was a lot that were old wishlist items that just weren’t needed anymore.
Another thing helping my budget is the lower gas prices in the St. Louis area. This has caused my gas budget to go from $120 per month to $80. And even that is high I think.
Plans for next month – One thing I really want to get purchased with next month’s budget is a Go Bag for work. I work at a location that if something were to happen, I’d like to be prepared. So I have plans to go to our local military surplus store and get a bag together. I have the list of everything I need ready.
So this is a long post but I wanted to show my progress. I feel like I’ve made some progress.
So last month was a horrible budget month. Totally blown. To many shiny things to tempt me.
So this month I’m going to focus on contentment. Many of the things I buy are because I’m sure I NEED this thing to look better, to feel better, to do something better. And yet I get the thing and I don’t feel different. I now must remember to use it. I must find a place to store it.
Right now, I need nothing. I have food. I have shelter. I have clothing (more than enough). I have a car. What I need is to be content with these things. To take stock of what I have. And appreciate those things and myself for what we are.
Instead of buying I’m beginning a decluttering plan. I’ll link this later if I like it. I will start with the things I can change. Not the things I cannot. And if I need to buy something to make decluttering work better – I’m going to try to wait a day or two to make sure I really need it.
I’m going to try to post a few times this week with my progress.