To keep my budgets, menus, to-do lists, and store lists in order, I put them all in the same spot: The Notebook.
It, figuratively, has saved my life.
My husband used to be a banker. He took care of the finances and I never had to worry about it. When I was unwed and young, I always cashed my check and had zero bills, so when the money was gone, it was gone. I didn’t have lines of credit, mortgages, car loans, or utilities. I never understood how to actually budget and keep track of money.
Then he went into the construction business. His long hours- sometimes out of town for weeks at a time- meant I had to take over. He handed me the password to our online account, typed in all the due dates and set reminders on my phone’s calendar, then said, “Have at it, goodluck!”
It was definitely a huge burden lifted off his shoulders. Soon, though, was slumped onto mine. The first month I paid the bills I was late on our mortgage payment and had to pay a thirty-some dollar fee. I bawled my eyes out. The whole number thing just didn’t click. Then that silly right brain of mine, again, saved the day (and the day after that, and the day after that…)
My system may not work for everyone, but it does for me, and that’s all that matters. I hope it does for you too!
If not, try anything you can come up with. Integrate multiple ideas together if you have to. Find what works for you and keep it!
•a notebook; mine is 8.5”x5.5”
•good pens; I am obsessed with sharpie pens- they really do not bleed through
photo splits; these are double-sided tape squares… you could just use tape if you want
•your weekly menu
Layer your menu and budget on the left page so you can still lift one side up to crisscross and see either/or depending on your purpose.
Okay, so everyone has to have a budget right?
Keep your intentions good and you can do it!
It is very hard, I know. Especially with children. When I budget I divide my bills into “beginning of the month” bills and “end of the month” bills. I even created a print out of my bills- here is a blank version for you. When I print it out, I make sure my printers settings are for four pages on one paper.
This helps me by having a go to paper to look at when I am budgeting not only for my regular bills, but also the non-necessities, dates, birthdays, holidays, etc…
I have tried to do the whole “envelope budgeting” but it only works half & half for me. On top of the budget print out I also have a couple envelopes. If you noticed my personalized list, the gas & groceries, trash, tithing, and fast offerings are all the items I take cash out for. I divide them into separate envelopes accordingly. That way I cannot go overboard on groceries and forces me to coast more on the road as not to fill up on gas as much. Any left-overs go towards whatever I feel is necessary. AHEM* shoes,clothes,makeup