The B Word

Budget – it isn’t a scary word to me. But I still don’t have it down. I balance our checkbook at least every other day. I used to use Microsoft Money but when the desktop computer crashed, Money went with it and I never got it to transfer over to the laptop. So I started using an excel spreadsheet.

The spreadsheet doesn’t track where our money is going – groceries, gas, etc. – it is just a running balance. We do online banking for all of our bills but two – and for some reason those businesses just don’t take anything but checks or cash.

The section I am working through in FPU Online is the cash flow part. I know I’ll have a budget in place by the end of it – but finances is the one place in life that my husband and I can’t seem to settle on an agreement. What I mean is when we were first married and he was gone, I was in charge of paying bills and such and he came home to not that much in the savings account. Though that was years ago, he hasn’t gotten over this and always reminds me that I spent a lot of money while he was gone.

Though I balance the spreadsheet every other day or so, sometimes there are surprises in the form of him not remembering to give me a receipt for something he buys. Neither of us spend very much without the others knowledge, but the one dollar here, six dollars there adds up over a couple of weeks.

A budget does not stick in place for very long around here. We may say okay let’s spend $300 on groceries – but if the cost is $350, we aren’t going to put something back. Okay groceries is a bad example because that is the one area where my husband has issues – meaning he always wants the fridge, freezer and pantry to be well stocked. I actually haven’t been grocery shopping in almost two weeks – except for milk and a few other things – because we are so well stocked. We are moving soon and I hope to not go grocery shopping but for a few things. I don’t like the idea of spending so much money and then getting rid of the food – it’s like throwing money away.

By the end of this lesson I plan on having a draft of a budget.

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