State Of The Union

So I just completed a first draft version of our 2013-2014 Family Budget.  I must admit, I do feel a bit discouraged. My heart is still pounding in my chest as I sit here in complete disbelief. I knew we were not bringing in enough to cover our current expenses, but I never imagined we were in such dire straights!

I’m not even considering expenses to eat out and shop. I’m talking mortgage, utilities, gas and groceries!!!! In actuality, we were outliving our income by even more. Once you factor in the occasional eating out, shopping for kids, hubby funding his hobbies or current business ventures, and my occasional beauty supply binges. Oy vey!

Now that I got that off of my chest… This stresses the importance of my finding a job that allows me to increase our monthly income.

There are a few changes we will be making immediately. Until we are able to cover I monthly expenses:

  • No eating out. Boo Hoo Hoo Hooooo. (This means I will need to cook at least 5-6 times a week.)
  • No more shopping for the kiddos.
  • Start researching and implementing ways to decrease grocery bills.
  • Start researching fun things to do on a budget
  • Implement the use of cash envelope (Cash envelopes are a great way to ensure that we stick to our budget. At the beginning of the week or month, we withdraw the amount we will need for grocery, gas, and other expenses we allow ourselves. We then place all cards in a safe place where we will not access them.  We are held accountable to the money we withdraw. We will not have access to any additional funds, until the next scheduled withdrawal).

I have researched quite a few tips from the internet on how to live on a budget. A few people recommend paying yourself. Once our situation improves, I will definitely start doing that. However, we are in desperate times. As they say, Desperate times, call for desperate measures.

Outlining a course of action does make me feel a bit more hopeful. I’ll let you know how the above strategies are working for us!

Feel free to leave comments on what works for you or just a word of encouragement for this portion of my journey.

* On a positive note, my 3 year old just won 3rd place in a 5 and under art contest. Yay!!!

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