Periodically, we have "Financial Nights" at the Braschler household. This consists of us looking at our monthly bills, money coming in, and working to set up a budget. We seem to have these often (often as in every few months) - and they usually take up the entire evening. (But they do include spreadsheets and highlighters and I am a HUGE fan of both of those things - and I'm being completely serious about that - I get a little giddy on the inside when I get to work with either of those things - must be the accountant in me).
We would like to be on a budget because we know that would be more "freeing" - which may sound weird, but it would let us know that it's ok to spend "X" amount of dollars on "fill in the blank". We have set up several budgets to try and do not follow through on any of them. Usually this is caused by unknown circumstances - whether that is fluctuating paychecks, jobs, living circumstances, having a baby, etc. This time, we have a house, Caleb is here (& paid for - his delivery, I mean), and we both have jobs with steady paychecks. [Side note: Wow! What a blessing to have all of that!!! We are very grateful.]
So, two nights ago we had another "Financial Night." We set out our plans and will use some of the "envelope system" - where you put cash into different envelopes for different categories and can only spend what's in the envelope for the entire month. Since Wednesday is June 1, we will begin then. Granted, not every single category gets cash taken out for it - (yikes, that would be a lot of cash to have on hand!), but just basic things like groceries, etc. We will communicate often and have other follow-up financial nights to see what adjustments need to be made.
We are hoping this will help keep us organized and committed and maybe we can make more of a dent in those pesky student loans (which were totally worth it for the great 4 years of education and experience we received, but those monthly payments aren't as much fun) and save better for the future. But we do know the meaning of hard work and can appreciate our education, house, vehicles and other things we are blessed to have because we know all the hard work that goes into having those.
So, here's to a structured lifestyle with our new and improved budget plan!