Sunday, August 27, 2006

Budget update

How is my budget coming, you might ask? Since it's the fourth week of the budget class I'm taking, I can't say there's much progress at paying off debt, but I'm just about to enter SEPTEMBER when the dreaded budget really begins. I have a budget developed, as you might recall. I have budget envelopes that will be prefunded this week for September for the following categories: food, charity, gas/oil, clothing and sundries. The rest of my bills I'll pay by check and I have done my debt snowball, which is the amount of debt (unsecured, so it doesn't include my house payment) I have starting with the smallest debt to the largest. I'll keep paying the minimums on everything until I pay off the first, then put that $50 payment toward the second debt to add to the payment. It's an easy concept and one that lets you see a light at the end of the tunnel that just might not be a train.

Last week we each gave our facilitator the amount of our debt written on a piece of paper, minus our house payments. The average debt per person/couple in the class was about $25,000, as I recall. That's pretty scary. Reportedly during this class, historically the average class taker person/couple reduces their debt by about $5,000 in 13 weeks. Unless I sell my second car, that won't be my story, but at least I feel like now I have a plan, if I can stick to it. Sticking to anything was never my strong suit, but I finally feel like I either have to look this in the face or live in financial chaos, which just isn't an alternative any longer. Once denial is gone, there just isn't any more hiding from the truth. I guess it's like drinking after you've had, as they say, a head full of the program.

Some small things have changed. I don't drive nearly as much as I used to; I analyze each trip to make sure that I really need to go where I'm going or if it can be combined with another trip. I stay out of stores and go with a list so that I don't get sidetracked by sales. I cook much more than I have in years and I actually enjoy it. I started renting films from Netflix since it's cheaper than renting movies at a store and I don't have to drive there or pay late fees. The first date my s/o and I went on where we rented movies he had to pay my late fees before we could rent the video. He's never let me forget that, in his good humored way.

Romy got a bath today. She loves to be bathed and afterward, she runs around like a two-year old. I'm definitely picking Oz up within the next month. His neck, from the recluse bite, is healing well and I miss him. It's time for him to come home.

Until tomorrow, take it one day at a time.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

dogs and cats only get mad