Thursday, March 5, 2009

Learning To Budget



Can I start by telling you guys that I HATE to even think about budgeting, much less actually doing it! I have to admit that I've NEVER budgeted in my life. Hey, why would I? I never made enough to cover all of my bills anyway. Putting it all on paper and coming up negative every month is just too depressing. I'm used to just getting the necessities and then juggling the rest around (pay partial here, wait for disconnect notices there.) I know many of you are saying, "WHAT...who lives like that?" Sadly, ME!

I've also turned my very responsible husband into me. He doesn't want to look at the negative balance each month either...so alas, he stopped balancing the checkbook. Now I guess you can tell where this is going, we've just gotten further and further behind. When our church offered a FREE Budgeting class, we both bit the bullet and signed up.

The class is called Freed Up financial living. It uses biblical principles with basic (simple) budgeting strategies. We attend our first class last Wednesday...it was packed with people, young singles, young and old married couples and elderly people. I guess as times get tougher, people are realizing that they can no longer live frivolously.

The first class was a quick over view and as we watched the DVD, it used some great analogies that make you stop and think about your relationship with money and "things." As good as the first class was, I was still dreading yesterday's class. We were going to begin the actual budgeting process. Learning to break things down, itemize, and strategize. Recording each expense daily...which of course is something I don't EVER want to do. As you can see, I survived. I don't know why I've put up a mental road block about the whole budgeting thing. I guess learning to be disciplined is a scary thought.

I hate feeling deprived, even though I'm not a big spender. I'm not your normal girl, I hate to shop, I cut and color my own hair, I rarely get my nails done...I just knickle and dime myself to death on fast food because I hate to cook. This whole Budgeting concept will definitely put a cramp in my Taco Bell and McDonald's runs. Probably even forcing me to COOK (ewwwwe). Can you see all of my road blocks?

With all that out of the way, I think, wait....I KNOW I can do this. I need to finally have financial freedom. I've organized my receipts, put them in an envelope and I'm ready to start the process to FREE up our family. If any of you are like me, I want to encourage you to sign up for a budgeting course. I'll keep you posted on my progress....

6 comments:

outdoor.mom said...

awesome post!! i lived in neg for many years. i love your blog :-)

KC Mom said...

I think you and are pretty similar...I'm not a big spender, generally but I don't like feeling like I have to do without. I hate living on a budget...like you for years it was because I never had enough money to budget anyway so what was the point?!
I think it's great that your church has a way to help people with their finances. I know the Lord wants us to manage our money properly and will probably hold us accoutable for it someday!
Thanks for sharing!

B said...

Good for you guys to but the bullet.

Simply Stork said...

good for you! It is time for us to get back to our budget too :o)

~simply~

April said...

Wow Lis! You sound like mom! Ty and I took a budgeting class through church last year, and it was great! We were just talking the other day about how we have to figure out a budget now. Yuck...I've been procrastinating too. I guess we have to face the facts eventually in order to get ourselves out of debt! Anyways, you should also check out the book by Dave Ramsey, called "The Total Money Makeover." He has a great plan!

What A Card said...

It's funny, but you say now you don't want to track your spending/budget, but I bet you become addicted to it! Once it becomes more of a routine, it's kind of fun to see where all the money's going.

Okay, sometimes it's depressing. But mostly it's really interesting, once you get your tracking system down and it's stops being an annoyance. Good luck!