Spending for March, Goals for April
Could it really be April already?!
Totals for the Month of March, 2010
- Rent, $250 (Goal, $250)
- Car Payment, $0 (Goal, $350)
- So technically, I did not miss a car payment. I just let it auto-pay out of my checking account. So no income this month was spent on my car, but I still paid it. Clear as mud.
- Utilities, $0 (Goal, $15)
- Um… I think I owe Liz some money.
- Groceries, $192.98 (Goal, $100)
- Ha! Don’t go veg the same month you cut your grocery budget. Note to self: less tofu and asparagus, more pintos and carrots!
- Gas, $30.42 (Goal, $20)
- The gift card didn’t stretch quite as far as I hoped, but is still much appreciated!
- Dining Out, $43.17 (Goal, $40)
- About one expensive coffee too many.
- Entertainment, $0 (Goal, $40)
- Boring month for Kayla K. I have the good fortune to enjoy cooking, which is technically a chore, crocheting with plastic, and watching Law and Order: SVU marathons. All of which cost nothing.
- Business, $0 (Goal, $0)
- Clothing/Personal, $51.52 (Goal, $20)
- I blame the haircut.
- Other, $181.22 (Goal, $0)
For a total monthly spending of $749.41. Which falls within my goal of $800, not including car payment which is totally cheating. And I obviously owe Liz utilities.
I was doing GREAT until yesterday when I:
- Got a wellness screening for cholesterol, diabetes, iron, protein, calcium, etc, $15.
- On the way home spotted a garage sale where I found the ever-elusive bicycle! It’s a Marin, which is apparently good, fairly new, baskets attached, with a tool set and spare tire, and it’s my size for $125
- Brought some stuff to the consignment store where I found a great pair of Banana Republic slacks for $18.75, but drew a joker from their discount deck for 20% off, plus $3 store credit for a total of $13
- Bought a lock for my “new” bike for $20.32. Yes, it is new. Yes, I’m not supposed to buy anything new. But I’m not very well going to ride my bike around a college town with no lock, eh? And riding a bike is better than driving my car. And the Compact supports the environment. YES I broke Compact and NO I don’t even feel guilty!
- I went do get my hair cut and paid $38. Which is a pretty hefty haircut! No, my stupid self fell into the trap of a shampoo and style. The option was never given to me. She just said, “Let’s go get you shampooed” and, “I’m just going to blow dry this so I can see how the bangs lay.” And I thought it was complimentary. Um, duh, Kayla K! I left her a great tip and hope she feels guilty. Very tricky.
- Bought $37 of groceries on the way home.
For a “little excursion” total of $248.32. Which is equal to rent/car payment.
This is only my second month on a budget, and I am not really enjoying myself. Budgets are so confusing, because they never quite work out right. One problem I have is with my credit card, for example. I write down the “purchase” I make with my credit card. Later that month I also include that I made a credit card payment. Although technically, I already recorded that purchase.
Or with my car payment. I do not make a car payment. I just dump all of my extra money in my checking account and my payment withdraw itself. On a month like this one when I took off a few too many weekends, my budget would be negative if I recorded my car payment. But sometimes I make $300 or more greater than what I spend in a month. Where does that money go? Is it “income” for the next month?
Bah. Budgeting makes me cranky. My logistically-wired brain just can’t take the wampass calculations. But I am sticking with it because that is what I need to do. This is only Month 2, which means I have a lot more learning left to do.
And several more compulsions to just let go!
Anyway. Goals for April: $350, other than rent and car payment. Within these parameters I have the freedom to spend all of my money on organic food and have no gas for my car, or I could have an expensive night out with a concert, dinner, and very posh drinks but go back on Ramens for the rest of the month. I’ll keep my categories to let you know how I’m doing, but I think concentrating on the big picture will be most helpful for me.
What’s your budgeting style? Any tips?
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