Friday, December 16, 2011

The Breakdown

It adds up faster than you think.
Photo by Michelle Meiklejohn

Following the directions in the Planner, we’ve been tracking our spending since last Friday.  Here’s our report, warts and all. Take advantage -- be a little voyeuristic!  There’s some ugly stuff on here, so no judgments please.  We are aware of the problem, and that’s the point of this project.  Change isn’t overnight.

  • Gas   25.15
  • Groceries (including Christmas/Birthday gifts)  167.30

  • Coffee with Dad  6.00
  • Red Robin (Mom’s birthday lunch)  32.74
  • Lunch at work (Gavin)  8.00

  • Gift for my brother   20.97
  • Breakfast at work (Gavin)  4.93

  • Hulu    8.75
  • Gift for Gavin    13.93
  • KFC   18.92
  • McDonalds   10.05
  • Breakfast at work (Gavin)  6.47

  • Gas   21.00

  • Parking (for Elias’s appt.)  5.00
  • NSF fee through bank   25.00
  • Payment on Merrick account (credit card)  23.30

  • NSF bank fee 25.00
  • Breakfast at work (Gavin)  2.10
  • Sodas  5.25

Okay.  I can see some serious problems and money drains.  They’re pretty ugly in fact.  But that’s not what we are looking at today.  Our assignment was to evaluate how our spending reflects our priorities.

I can see my family priority reflected in my spending on gifts and the treats on Saturday.  I spent money I really couldn’t afford because I wanted to participate in my mom’s birthday.  Responsibility and health kind of flew out the window when I was feeling lazy on Monday and opted to get dinner at KFC.  Convenience really took over at that point.

Gavin’s priorities weren’t very well reflected in his spending this week either.  Taking care of the family with groceries and Christmas gifts was there, but he also spent a lot of money trying to streamline his mornings.  He will probably say that he is eating out in the morning to keep from waking Maddie up, and that’s his way of helping the family, but it’s clear that we are going to have to find a better solution.

And what about those bank fees?  Neither of us has a goal of keeping BECU in business, so we definitely need to get that under control.  

The next step is to figure out how we're going to save that $1000 emergency fund.  It looks pretty challenging at this point, but we're going to sit down tonight and hammer out a plan.  I plan to post the plan, along with constant updates on how we are growing that $1000.  I think it will be fun to see how it grows!

No comments:

Post a Comment