Monday, June 25, 2007

May Income/Expenses

Wow - what a month! The bottom line doesn't look too bad, but I put some expenses on the credit card to delay them a month (dental bills, glasses), so next month will be crazy. We're still having a problem making ends meet because of the extra $100 a month in rent increase as well as the extra $100 a month in gas. We're going to try to cut back the unnecessary errands.

There wasn't as much art income this month because Basil saved the money to spend when his folks were visiting.

This month we started adding interest income and expense. I have a savings account that earned $17 worth of interest, and Basil's credit card interest was $119, but that included a $75 charge for moving credit around to get a lower interest rate, so next month that will be much lower.

The clothing expense was up, but that was paid with extra money I got from selling some artwork.

The scary/bad category, as always, is the dining category. We spent $499 in one month! Ugh! So with the $500 in groceries, that's $1000 in food for the month! Granted, most of the time we ventured out to cheap fast food joints, but often there were four of us as Number One Son was staying with us for two weeks. We also celebrated the end of the semester with a nice meal out as well. Something has to be done! Basil and I decided that if we're really serious about saving for an emergency fund and getting out of debt, we're going to have to sacrifice. So we've decided to follow in the footsteps of An English Major's Money and use an envelope for our monthly dining out funds. We're going to budget $30 a week for eating out, which will amount to $120 for the month instead of the $500 we spent this month. That would give Basil $380 extra to go towards credit card debt. Since that's our worst expense, we thought we'd try it for a month, and if it works well we may go to other categories as well. It will be hard because Number Three Son comes to visit July 9.

The only other problem was that last month I posted that we got the electric bill only every other month....well, I was wrong. We just missed last month, so we had a double bill this month.

Everything else was pretty standard. It's kind of depressing sometimes to see how much we spend in a month, but then we get competitive and say "We can do this thing! Let's not eat out at all next month! Let's pay the credit cards off by Christmas! YEAH! GO! GO! GO!" Then we come down off the furniture and get a little more realistic, but still determined to beat this debt.


English Major said...

I don't use physical envelopes, though I encourage you guys to--it's definitely worth a try. Instead, I use a little Mac-friendly budgeting program called, simply enough, "Budget," which has "virtual" envelopes (with envelope graphics, which I actually find really helpful). You can download a trial here if you want to check it out.

FrugalBabe said...

Piggy Bank Raid - a cool new blog - has a post about making meals at home as much fun as eating out:

And here's to that couch jumping when the extra eating-out money gets sent to the credit card company!!