The Budget Project
I don’t have a budget, I probably should, I mean I’m not an excessive spender, but some weeks I look at the bank statements and think… where did that go? I like to be organised, and I remember my dad constantly drumming in to me the importance of having a weekly budget but overtime I suppose I’ve become lazy in keeping track of where our money is going. So this is my resolution. I only just thought of it this week and seeing as though it will no longer be January as of tomorrow I’m not sure I can qualify it as a ‘New Years Resolution’, so for now it’s my plain resolution.
I don’t have any intention of calling mybudget.com or any other organisation that would probably make this process a thousand times easier, I just want to be able to create a comprehensive spreadsheet that can have a goal of buying a house at the end of it; Or maybe an international holiday.
So first things first. All week I’ve been collecting receipts. Not just sliding them down the back of my purse as extra padding, I mean putting them in a paperclipped pile on the bench so I can calculate my weekly expenditure and work out where it’s going. This week has been a little more expensive than others, and because of that we maybe haven’t been off to the best start, I put my car in for a service this morning that I was quoted $170 for, it ended up costing $510 (thanks to some new tyres), good one car.
I used to have a food diary. You know one of those things where you write down everything you eat for the day and it counts how many calories you’ve consumed, and by 8pm when you’re reaching for the ice-cream tub and spoon you can look at it and think.. I’ve only got 80 calories left do I really need this? So I’ve started a spending diary, and instead of the ice cream that I think I want, it’s the impulse buys on eBay. Seriously have you ever looked through your ‘recently viewed items’? Maybe it’s just me but I swear I can justify the need for anything on eBay.
Recently on a Facebook group that I’m in, someone posted tips on their own weekly food budget, the more people joined in the more interesting it became. I picked up some tips from that, which mostly revolved around freezing food – herbs, fruits, vegetables, meals. But would love to hear any from anyone else.
My biggest waste is definitely food that I buy when I’m grocery shopping and then throw in the bin because it’s gone off. Mostly herbs that I need for one recipe and are off by the time I need them again. Indi and I started a herb garden this week. Our own fresh herbs that we can just pick what we need from. I also baked muffins with the berries and yoghurt that was about to go off and made a lasagna with a whole lotta veggies that were on their last legs. This week’s grocery shop revolved around a meal plan for the next seven days. We’ll see how it goes and I’ll get back to you.