Tracking Spending

I've had quite a busy, insightful and productive morning. What started as frustrating has turned into motivating. I have been crunching numbers. I have been scanning receipts. I have been evaluating the budget.

The last few months have felt increasingly more difficult to stay in budget and still purchase the items we need. I realized this morning it was time to re-evaluate.

I knew we were spending extra on baby items for our new little guy, but I didn't know exactly how much. I am ashamed to admit that it wasn't until I sat down and focused that I fully realized it.

With pen and paper in hand, I tracked what I had been spending, listed the items required for monthly baby needs and the cost for each. Now I know how to attack my spending and look for better deals.

Do you track your spending? Do you have a budget? Do you live within your means? Do you use credit and would like to stop?

Track Your Spending

I have discovered that knowing this information is crucial when it comes to creating and staying on a budget.

Example A: Not knowing what I spend...

I think I spend on groceries: $500
I actually spend on groceries: $800
I create a budget allowing to spend on groceries: $500 (what I think I spend)

My thoughts on budgeting might be: A budget doesn't work! I can't budget! I can't live within my means!


Example B: Knowing what I spend...

I know I spend on groceries: $800
I create a budget allowing to spend on groceries: $500

My thoughts on budgeting might be: I know why I am straining to stay within budget, it is a $300 decrease from what I am used to. The strain has everything to do with my previous spending habits. It is not the fault of the budget. It is not that I can't stick to a budget. It is living within my means which will take some time to get used to.

My Current Situation:

I have a budget in place. There is now money that has to be diverted for baby items that weren't coming out of our budget even four months ago.

Being in the habit of tracking my spending helped me to realize the last few months of difficulty have not been the fault of the budget, but rather my needs list changing.

Budgeting, planning, shopping and spending re-work in the days to come...

Now if you'll please excuse me, I'm off to create a very set menu plan based on food I have in the house and what I have left to spend for the rest of the month.

1 comment:

  1. A belated Happpy Anniversary - to both of you.
    We have been on a budget for all of our married life (42 years!). I just followed my Mom's good example. It has worked so well for us.
    You are doing a very wise thing.

    Thank you for your prayers dear friend. The sun is shining in my heart again this morning!


Thank you for taking a moment to stop and chat. I enjoy the presence of you!