I have been practicing my cash budget for over 8 weeks. I have been pretty successful. I will be wrapping up this series today, but not wrapping up my budget!
Thanks for following along and providing some accountability for me. You can read more about my budget and how it’s been going here.
As I mentioned last week, I started a Christmas cash budget now with the holiday season approaching. I have been determined to shop and plan early so I can make the most of my money and time. My husband I and decided on a lump amount. Now I have one amount for presents and one for all my other expenses.
If you are familiar with some of my budget strategies, you will know that it is important for me to STAY OUT OF THE STORES. This includes the grocery store and department stores. However, ’tis the season for Christmas shopping.
I am planning on doing some of my shopping online. I will use a credit card for those purchases. I am discussing this ahead and getting a credit card from my husband so I stay within our holiday budgeting.
Last weekend I headed out to shop for presents at the outdoor malls. The weather was beautiful AND I had cash AND I hadn’t been shopping for awhile. I think I was a little too excited for my own good.
I did pick up a few presents. I did pop into a few stores just to see what was on sale. I hadn’t bought much for myself lately and I had a little to spend. I found this incredible deal at Ann Taylor LOFT.
I am 6 feet tall. Buying off the rack can be a challenge. I like to find regular sized dresses that would be too short for me and wear them with skinny jeans or leggings.
I came across this dress on the sale rack. It met all my criteria. Long enough. Elastic waist so I can belt it for a little more shape. Cute fall fabric and…
…ON SALE! It started out $89.50. Marked down to $54.99. Additional 60% off.
This would have made the price about $21.99. I thought that was a pretty good deal. I tried it on and loved it. I took it to the counter to pay. The sales clerk was surprised to see the dress. She said it must have just been put back out from a customer return. She had been looking to buy it for herself before it was originally sold.
She rang me up and started laughing. The price was $4.88! With tax $5.34!
I paid with $10.04 in cash of course. What a deal! I had to brag about this one!! Thanks, Lord for that little blessing.
As I finish this series, I once again realize the power of CASH. My husband and I have followed cash budgets in the past only to eventually get away from them to the more convenient debit card. It really does just come down to convenience of a card.
It’s amusing to me when I’m in a checkout line. I strategically pull out my cash without revealing the cash stash I have in my wallet to those around me. (I am aware that sketchy characters may be watching me.) LOL I usually try to avoid pennies so I add a few cents for my change to come out penniless.
By the end of the transaction, I’m sweating as I clumsily find the correct spots for bills and change handed back to me while others in line look a little annoyed. I feel very high maintenance. I can just hear them saying, “Could you just use your credit card like the rest of us?”
The boundary of cash is definitely helpful for me. As my cash dwindles I become more resourceful with what I already have whether that be clothes or food. Last week was a good example of using what I had.
I had purchased a large package of bratwurst from Sams earlier this summer. I froze what we didn’t grill. I had hot dog buns. It was freezing outside but brats sounded so good and I wanted to free up my freezer a little.
I decided to try brats in my crockpot. I looked it up on Pinterest. Others were doing it. Here was my attempt.
I took out the brats and let them thaw in fridge for a couple hours.
I placed them in a hot pan sprayed with a little Pam cooking spray.
Cooked them on low for about 6 hours.
They were really good. I’m not going to lie. Nothing beats a brat on a grill. You don’t get the crispy outside “pop” of the skin when you make them in a crockpot but they were tasty.
We ate them with buns and without. I also made some roasted acorn squash with a little olive oil, maple syrup and salt and pepper.
AND baked homemade fries.
Inexpensive. Yummy. Easy.
Discipline. Goals. Delayed gratification. All yucky but good-for-me things about budgeting.
My budgeting is beneficial for my relationship with my husband. I have the freedom to spend within my cash limits. He has the peace of knowing ahead of time what our flexible spending will be. He has also been more careful with his spending. It’s contagious.
Believe me, I understand my budgeting may look different from others. Some of you may be a on a shoestring with the loss of a job or a divorce. Whatever your situation, I hope you have found my budgeting series helpful in some way.
I know writing and telling others about mine has been helpful to me. Accountability is key in my opinion. Let me know if you are budgeting. Your successes. Your challenges. Your advice. What you have learned from attempting budgeting. I’d love to hear from you!