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Saturday, October 2, 2010

september recap & october goals

I meant to post this budget recap yesterday but I was so excited about my new couponing series that I decided to put the boring stuff off for a day.  I don't know how it was for you, but September flew by for me.  I actually felt like I blinked and the month was over.  I had a lot of things on my list that I wanted to accomplish, and looking back, perhaps I was a little overly ambitious. (Me? Overly ambitious? No!)  I think I ended up being able to cross off only half my list, but as my 4 year old likes to say, "neh neh, nevermind."  On a brighter note, I did once again come in way under budget for the month and ended up  putting a lot more in savings than I was shooting for.

But despite my feeling of never quite being able to catch up, I can't emphasize enough how much budget living has changed my life for the better.  My marriage has never been stronger, and while I am generally a pretty positive person, I am happier now than I have been in a long time.  If you would've asked me six months ago if I thought I'd enjoy living on a budget, I would have emphatically said no way in you-know-where.  And yet here we are, going into October, and I am prepared to shave an additional $150 off my budget (to help pay for our new minivan) without a single qualm.

Budget-wise, here is how I did for September (over budget categories are in red; under budget in green):

Groceries:  budgeted $400.00, spent $312.99
(I am very happy to see my grocery bill go down significantly from last month.  After three straight months of extreme couponing, my stockpile is plentiful, which means I can focus on only the very best deals each week.  I'm hoping October sees even better savings!)
Eating Out:  budgeted $125.00, spent $122.21
(I just barely made it under the wire on this one!)
Gas & Automobile Expenses: budgeted $225.00, spent 364.22
(My biggest expense of the month is also my most frustrating!  I'm not sure what to do to get this one down to a more reasonable number (besides never go anywhere.) Any ideas would be greatly appreciated!
Date Night:  budgeted $75.00, spent $25.00
(We went out for a wonderful fancy dinner and used a Restaurant.com certificate to pay most of the bill!)
Kids' Activities &; Crafts:  budgeted $150.00, spent $149.26
(I've been feeling a little craftier than usual lately.  As a result, our craft supplies were running low so I stocked up on a variety of very cool things.  As usual, those costs added up!)
Home Decor & Organizing: budgeted $100.00, spent $275.11
(I ended up going way over on this category because I purchased several items for my upcoming master bedroom remodel.)
Clothing: budgeted $100.00, spent $79.95
Gifts: budgeted $100.00, spent $6.04
Entertaining & Parties: budgeted $175.00, spent $207.43
(What can I say?  We like to entertain.  Most of this went to stocking up on liquor, beer, & wine.)
Babysitting: budgeted $150.00, spent $68.00
Health & Fitness: budgeted $25.00, spent $0
Beauty: budgeted $25.00, spent $19.06
Misc.: budgeted $50.00, spent $111.99
(Most of this went to assorted blog-related expenses.  Next month I am going to have to add a new category.)

Total amount spent: $1,734.27
Total amount saved (from coupons, deals, & discounts): $2,911.28

Savings Goal: $300.00
Actual Money into Savings: $533.89

All-in-all, another very good month!

Goal-wise, on the other hand, September wasn't the best month for me.  Here is how I did:

-organize my kitchen cabinets
-plan my master bedroom remodel (to be done in October)--develop an inspiration board & budget.
-begin planning & working on fall/halloween decorations
-baby proof my bathroom cabinets!
-clean & organize my garage--do one thing every day
-start Christmas shopping
-re-organize my coupons
-sell unwanted/unneeded items on craigslist.  If they haven’t sold by the end of the month, donate remaining items to goodwill.
-sort through Maggie’s art projects from the past year.  Keep the good ones and recycle the rest.

I didn't exactly hit it out of the park.  But that's the beauty of a new month--I get to wipe the slate clean and start all over again with a renewed optimism.  (Pathetically delusional, aren't I?)

October Goals:
-complete my fabulous blog makeover
-baby-proof my cabinets
-organize the garage
-continue working on early Christmas shopping
-sort through Maggie’s art projects
-decorate for Halloween
-begin working on Thanksgiving plan
-organize my kitchen cabinets
-clear out the armoire in living room (so we can finally convert it into a wet bar as planned.)
--re-organize craft supplies
-re-organize home office
-complete my Master Bedroom remodel

And maybe I am just a glutton for punishment, but I really think I can get it all done this month!

1 comment:

  1. I think you still did wonderful on your list! You have to remember that we are only human and sometimes it is more important to spend that time with our families! Which from your recent posts that is what you have been doing 80)

    You did great on the budget and putting so much more away in the savings! Kudos to you and keep up the awesome work!!!!


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