Tuesday, May 8, 2007

Fun money

My husband and I tend to be pretty likeminded when it comes to money and financial issues (what a blessing!), but last year we decided we needed to improve our approach to a monthly budget. We both tend towards saving, rather than spending, but Iwas sometimes feeling guilty for purchasing anything I viewed as unnecessary (including certain types of groceries--snack foods, certain name brands).

Though the system we put in place has been tweaked a couple of times, it has really been helpful in tracking each month's expenditures. We use a small plastic organizer (designed for checks/coupons) and have labeled various sections: food, gifts, misc. This way we know how much we've spent in each category for the month. I have never really enjoyed "formal" budgeting, but have found this to be helpful.

My favorite part, though, is that every month, we each get $10 of fun money to spend on whatever we want. Gift money that we receive for birthdays or holidays goes into our envelope, too, so we can save up for a bigger item--or not, as we choose. This has been really great, because now I don't feel (as) guilty when I occasionally buy craft supplies or treats, like the massage I'm getting today (I'm so excited!). My husband uses his funds to purchase fishing and hunting supplies. Good times!


Susan said...

We are also budgeting too! Since I have no job I sometimes am feeling guilty for purchasing stuff. We usually really save for our trips to the US and then we have plenty. But we are learning a ton about stuff. I really enjoy reading your blogs. I have been inspired to give myspace.com a try.

thehomespunheart said...

I have loved having an amount that I know I can spend each month. It is such a good feeling of having a non-guilt amount set aside!!

Linda said...

I am working the Dave Ramsey Plan and I have a certain amount of "blow money" each month and this really makes a difference.

Mary Ann said...

We do this too! It's a great concept. :-)

Tracy said...

My husband and I get an "allowance". A small amount of cash each week that we can spend without question...my husband generally uses his for coffee. Today I'm getting a day old muffin from the bakery down the road. Yum! And guilt free!

carrie said...

Yay--good to know we're joined by so many!

Linda, we have listened to several Dave Ramsey seminars on CD's--he's a great motivator to getting your finances in shape!