Monday, April 1, 2013

Budget Numbers Fudged

So I've been lying to myself recently about my budget. Have you ever done that? You wanted to make the truth sound prettier so you fudge a few numbers and forget you need to add other numbers? Well that is what I've done with looking at my food and household budget. My ideal budget is $400 per month to cover food, pets and household items. Sadly this seems to be a pretty unrealistic goal but that doesn't mean I should stop what I'm doing. I decided to take a realistic view of when I started this challenge and then compare it to previous months and then thinking to myself, "Oh well those were holidays and that month just was really busy," I went and compared this past March with March of 2012. I may not have made as much progress as I was hoping but I definitely should NOT stop this experiment. I kept stressing out because we were eating out more than planned just between stress and time and things getting messed up but even with that in mind I'm still doing better.

March 2012        -$790.01
November 2012  -$810.96
December 2012  -$844.59
January 2013      -$766.55
---Challenge Start---
February 2013    -$618.10
March 2013       -$657.45

The interesting thing is that during March of last year I was couponing and playing the drug store game. Our pantry was probably quite a bit fuller than it is now. I stopped doing major couponing in September. I still print a few off and receive coupons in the mail but as I never had time to really read the news paper I didn't see where it was worth it to make someone leave the house Sunday morning and pray there were coupons in the paper (many times the newspaper would not put coupons in their papers unless you had a subscription) or paying for a 3 day subscription only for what I want in 1 days newspaper. In September my free feed of Newspapers stopped working Sunday nights because I used to get 30 papers dropped off Monday morning. It was kind of a good change though because there is such thing as being too stocked up!
In February of 2012 I decided to cut our family down to 1 lb of meat. Yes, we used to eat 2lbs +! We used to make 2 boxes of hamburger helper, 2 lbs of hamburger for tacos and other foods. Oh we'd always have left overs but seriously we didn't need to do that and since it was there it'd prompt us to eat a LOT more than we needed to. Now some things we still make 2 lbs of meat up for (cheesy chicken, pulled pork, etc.) but for the most part we have dramatically cut down.

Anyways my other numbers may have looked prettier but this is the reality and the faster I'm ready to face reality the faster I can do something about it. I still have made a positive turn around and I'm glad to see that.

1 comment:

  1. Hey, I think you are doing great! I do um,know exactly what you mean about fudging the numbers. Cutting down on the meat is a good idea.