Sunday, December 5, 2010

Day 52 - The Dreaded Weekly Budget Meeting

December 5, 2010

Mike and I just ended our weekly budget meeting.  We had to cut it off after an hour and a half.  Exhaustion and frustration were beginning to set in.  We attempted to budget through January and found we barely squeak by in December and end up in the red in January.  We estimate having $3 in our checking account on the 15th (my next pay date) and not enough money to cover bills during the first part of January.  Back to the chopping block. 

Let me tell you, money saving ideas come out of nowhere when you really sit down and think about it.  Or maybe it's just me not being responsible enough to remember this stuff in the first place.  For example, we budgeted $200 for Christmas gifts.  I realized I had received $235 from my Wellness Rewards program through work (basically get paid to exercise) and was able to apply it towards an Amazon gift card - gifts are now taken care of without using any cash!

Another expense that is going to need to be cut is Christmas travel for me.  I really wanted to drive home or drive to Colorado to spend time with some of my family, but the cost of that could easily reach upwards of $500 or more.  I think I will be able to find a manageable alternative, plus it will give me some relaxing time at home without having to show up at work for a few weeks.  Not my first choice but I will have plenty of other opportunities to visit with my family in the near future.

So for now we budget to barely squeak by as long as Murphy doesn't visit any time soon.

Workplace Rewards: Many workplaces offer Wellness Rewards or other types of benefits for their employees.  This is basically free money for you - it may take a little effort but in the end it's worth it.

What we're eating this week: PB&J, Veggie stir fry with quinoa, spaghetti and two nights of Christmas parties (wish we could take home the yummy leftovers!)

What we're selling this week: An office chair and some textbooks.

Murphy's Law: Anything that can go wrong, will go wrong.

Chin up. Eyes on the prize.

Stay tuned,
Sarah
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