July Financial Update

Reality called and it said: “stop talking and start doing.” Yep, reality hit me this weekend.

Checking our bank account, looking at our budget, paying our bills on time, those are things I have talked about doing but have been ignoring lately. As a result, last night I paid my credit card bill 11 days late. A $49 bill tacked on an extra $29 late fee. Ouch! On top of that, our cell phone bill was $100 higher thanks to roaming charges when we were on vacation. Double ouch! Heed this advice and don’t be stupid like us.

On to the good news, In June we decided it would be OK to increase our contribution to our sons’ 529 plan from $50 a month to $100 each. For this month, we have decided to increase our contributions to our cash savings from $100 every paycheck to $150. The reason we are doing this is because we decided to go visit my family abroad at the end of November (anyone want to guest blog?). We need to save the money we will be spending there. The money for the tickets came from our savings so far this year.

During the month of July we spent $350 in food. That includes groceries ($215) and eating out ($135)! That’s amazing for us! This reduced expense category is what is affording us to save a little bit more. Gas was expensive of course and I am considering resuming my normal activities this month. This means swimming classes and the gym for me. I am thinking going out three mornings everyday. My son has been asking for more human interaction and I need to have some me time.

Despite the flops, we continue forward. I need to pull myself together and grab again the financial reins in this household. I look forward to a money smarter August.

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  • Justine

    I started using this tool recently and I think its going to be a huge help to managing my budget… it even fires off emails ‘reminding’ me when bills are due with plenty of time!


  • Anonymous

    I have a calendar that sits on my kitchen counter that uses dry-erase markers. When a bill arrives in the mail (like a credit card bill), I figure out the date it needs to be mailed and then I write it on the board. Everything gets written on this calendar — appointments, book reports, family dinners, vacations. It has saved me my sanity because I don’t have to worry anymore about forgetting something. I just have to remember to check the calendar each morning.

    So. MD

  • Mercedes

    Hi Karen,
    The turth is that I have been veru lax in my organizational duties. I also have one of those calendar boards in my kitchen and the last month in it is March. that should tell you how long this has been going on for. Thanks for the reminder that this should be a very useful tool.

  • Marcy

    WOW – great savings on your grocery budget this month!