Sunday, February 1, 2009

Money Monday - What's in your wallet...er...checkbook.

I'm always amazed at the people who don't balance their checkbooks. I guess I didn't do it for a while, but now I'm so anal about it that it has to balance to the penny every time. This weekend I spent a lot of time re-subtracting and scratching out a bunch of entries in our checkbook. I'm old fashioned ok, back off. I don't like Quicken. I like my transaction register with my medium point blue pen. But, usually it's no problem. I get such a nerd-like exhilaration when my checkbook balances...like it's Kennywood Day and me and my friends have matching outfits.

Anyhow, it's February 1 - BUDGET TIME.

Trying to figure out how much my paychecks are going to be and remember what in the world we're going to spend money on this month that's out of the ordinary drives me nuts. I can never remember it all...but I'd never forget little Nicky's 4th Birthday!!! (Not to mention I found a mistake in my paycheck...AGAIN!)

But, we still follow a very tight budget and I love to look back and see how far we've come. Many people look at a budget as restricting, but in reality it's very freeing. By telling your money what to do - it will do what you tell it to...GO FIGURE. Our so-far-paid-off-debt-total is over $23,000 in just over a year and a half. Just a tiny tiny bit over $10,000 left to go!!! You have no idea how much I want my school loan GONE!!! Do you know what I could DO with the money we're putting to debt every month??

Here's the thing - even though I feel like I'm putting thousands of dollars through a paper shredder to pay of this debt - I SPENT THAT MONEY YEARS AGO!! I BLEW IT! And, now I'm paying for it. Literally.

But without the budget, We'd be lost. I'd have no idea where our money is going.  I'll follow a budget even when I'm rich...Yes, I said WHEN. It's really not a good idea to have no idea where your money is going. Even in this economy, you can not only survive, but THRIVE!

DEBT FREE FOR ME - Coming this FALL 2009!

P.S. I've emailed out many copies of my empty Excel budget. It's easy, plug and go, and does your addition for you. Let me know if any of you are interested. I'm glad to send it out!

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