Thursday, July 17, 2008

Current Situation and How Far We've Come

It's been a long time since I've blogged, partially due to life just getting busy and partially because my inspiration was waning. I didn't have any great tips on saving money. I'd used them all up. And I didn't think anyone would really want to read about what we spent in a day's time or every little way we saved a buck. Though sometimes I did want to write about that stuff, just because it was exciting to me and reminded me of why we were doing what we were doing.

So tonight I thought I'd throw out a little update. I may do a few more blogs...a few exciting things have happened that sort of center around money. I've had a few new ideas to share and at some point I'll post some more recipes. My friends have given me all kinds of great ones to try and I've collected so many I think I have enough to get me through the rest of year. If anyone out there actually reads and uses them, let me know and I'll get on posting some more.

We, meaning the BF and I, are doing really well considering how we started out. Alot of times we'll remind each other of how it was the first month I was here. "Remember when we only had $10 and no jobs?" We joke about it, but I've told him many times that I never want to be in that situation again. I never want to be in any situation I've been in in the past. I don't want to worry that I can't pay the rent or my car payment. I don't want to avoid the letters from the bank because I know they're telling me that I've overdrafted. I don't want to realize that a "treat" to myself ended up being a day's worth of spending that ended up costing me triple what it was worth in overdraft and late fees.

At present time, there is enough in the bank to cover all our bills with some leftover for us to "play with" over the next two weeks until our next payday. We have a savings account, my first in a number of years and his first ever. There's enough in savings for me to finally go to Michigan at the end of the summer with some to spare, and we still have time to keep socking money away in there for spending money. And still have some left. There's this sense of security that I haven't had in a really long time, but there's also a scary sense of "If I screw this up I'm going to backslide again." I've been diligent about keeping track of the checkbook, so much so that I balance it everyday to make sure nothing is going on with it that I'm not aware of.

For the most part, we're still being frugal. We're still getting help with the Vision Card, but July is the last month we'll be getting them. However, groceries have been costing anywhere from $30 to $50 at a time and lasting us for two weeks at least. We take advantage of free stuff when we can without taking advantage of any one person. But we're also letting ourselves a little lee way. My big splurge for this year, besides my trip to Michigan, was the massive amount I spent on Mary Kay stuff. I haven't told anyone how much I spent on it, at least not anyone online, because how do you justify spending money like that when you've cried poor all your life? To get it out into the was a little over $300, paid in monthly installments through the rest of the year. On a high note though, I really like it. It seems to be doing good things for my complexion and I've narrowed down what I'll actually want to buy in the future vs. what I splurged on to see how it works.

The BF hasn't been left in the cold either. He's been able to buy gaming books, a new paintball gun and paintball accessories, and had money to actually go gaming and paintballing with his friends instead of borrowing money from them just so he could be social. As for the two of us, we're still cooking at home alot, but we're okay if on a random night we decide to order a pizza, or on a weekend we decide to go out for lunch. In fact, this coming weekend, we're going to the movies to see "The Dark Knight" and out to lunch at a local downtown restaurant and we're treating his brother for helping us move. I have a BOGO coupon for the movie and a $10 gift card I won at work for the restaurant, but there's nothing wrong with a frugal splurge either.

That pretty much sums up where we're at right now. I hope to get some more blogging in like I did before, both to update and to keep myself motivated. It's so easy to think "Hey, I've got money...let's go spend it." I want to continue to be conscious of where and how my money is being spent so that the days of financial issue induced ulcers can be long gone.


Rachel H said...

Another think you can do is see if any of the restaurants around you have dinner and a movie specials. Garfield's in Petoskey has a special where you can get a reduced price movie ticket with each "meal" of $5.00 or more. The movie ticket price ends up being $5.50 for us and we can eat for less than $10 per person and get a nice meal. Sometimes if we just want to eat out and we go there we'll get the tickets anyways because they can always be used later.

al said...

Good for you!