Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Cash....good ole green backs...

When my husband and I got paid on the 14th, (we get paid twice a month), I took out a lump sum of cash and divided it up into separate category envelopes:

Cleaning service (decadent, but so worth it)
Spring Break "Fun" Money
Groceries (March 15 - 22)
Groceries (March 23 - 31)
School Carnival Fundraiser
Easter Basket Cash
What I forgot to set up was "household supplies". I ended up needing paper towels (I hope to get rid of these soon), contact solution, bath soap, tooth paste, and hair color (definitely a necessity :)). Since I didn't "budget" for these items, they came out of my allowance money. I presently have $1.00 left in my allowance category....my husband is sharing his...:)

The point in telling you all of this is that spending with cash is controlling my spending. This is important for me, as I'm discovering that I am very much an "emotional" spender. For instance, I could have easily overspent on Easter Baskets. Limiting myself in this category has caused me to be creative in making up these baskets. They came out beautiful, by the way, and I stayed within budget. (I'll show pictures in a later post). In the past, I probably would have bought more, spent on a credit card, and wondered why I spent so much when I'm throwing out the excess candy that no one ate!

I will go grocery shopping later today with a list in hand, my coupon book and my grocery envelope. I will leave my debit card and checkbook at home. (I look at each coupon now as "found" money! :))

We still have all $200.00 left in our "fun money", which we will probably use some of it tomorrow when we head into DC for the museums.

Cash rules and it's definitely keeping me in line. I can't spend what I don't have. Wait, isn't that they way our parents and grandparents handled money???


Canadian Saver said...

You really have it all organized!! How do you keep track of it? In envelopes?

For the household stuff, I use very little products... I only buy paper towels when they are on mega sale and pretty much only use those to clean up when the cat has an accident (he'll often regurgitate his food after eating a lot in one sitting... YUCK!). the rest of the stuff (toothpaste, tp, contact solution), I buy a few times a year on sale so I have a subaccount for that in my Freedom Account. The cash is there when I need it.

Canadian Saver said...

Oh forgot to say, I would love to see pictures of the baskets :-)

Sharon said...

That sounds like a great idea to stock up. Usually I do, but ever since my daughters have gone to college, the soap and contact solution disappear when they are home for the weekend, then return to college...I guess they know how expensive the stuff can be too!

Right now I have all of the cash in separate envelopes. It can be tedious, but it's keeping me on budget...well sort of. My husband has been using the debit card when I ask him to run some errands for me. He's not quite on track with the cash thing. Athough I'm sure it would help if I gave him some...:)