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February 02, 2008


Emmie (Better Make It A Double)

Interesting stuff, and hilarious about the plastic Walgreens bags. Walgreens used to get a lot of my impulse shopping dollars for some reason. FWIW, we don't make that much more than you even with 2 incomes for four people, and pay a lot more in "rent" (mortgage, in our case). That, plus higher medical premiums plus student loans and the actual costs of maintaining a home, significant monthly medical expenses, and you and I are of pretty equivalent "means". We've also been buying mostly used out of necessity for some time, but just as you are, we're finding that we both can and need to do even better. Even $200 per month is going to be a real stretch for us next year, and we've never been able to afford daycare of any kind even though that's been a real stretch with the amount we work. I agree that it's important to talk frankly about money. I've been following your posts about exploring homeschooling with interest, because I agree with so much of what you say, but part of me can't wait to have he childcare be partly taken care of so I can work a few more hours and take the pressure off a little financially. I don't always write in detail about the financial stressors because I know that it would bum my spouse out. he reads my blog, and I don't want him to feel like he should work even more than he already does.


I'm new to reading your blog, but I have to say you have the cutest twins ever. You spend your money very wisely. What challenges us are large medical expenses despite insurance.

Are you budgeting an allowance for yourself each month for the small impulse pleasures you enjoy (books, pizza, music)? That can be an alternative to going cold turkey on consumer goods and make you feel that you can enjoy yourself--only you know when you've reached that monthly limit, that's it. We've found it helps. Most recently, we've not been buying except for gifts or immediate need, but at some points the occasional extra has really been enjoyed--you appreciate/value the purchase more when you've saved for it, but you also remove the guilt when it's accounted for in your budget.

It looks like you have a handle on it. The only thing that jumped out to me was the US Bank fees, is that for your saveings/checking? If it is you may find it worth your time to find a bank (or credit union) that doesn't charge fees.

As for my budget, I spend a fair bit of time thinking about it, even if I don't post or talk about it much! I enjoy owning my own home, but the downside is we had to pay to get our well repaired this winter, and we're going into some serious debt this summer to replace the rotted out roof. I am very glad "the bank of Dad" is going to give us a low rate loan. So join me in saying - We will make it, we will make it...


I get ssdi because I am blind and will soon lose that because I started working. I only get $160 a month from that. No one can live on that. I live in Northern Virginia and it costs so much to live here. The government doesn’t figure in area that you live in into how much you get to make at your job. Sucks. I am lucky though because my husband has health insurance. You are doing well with what you make.
Budgeting is so hard!


Long-time lurker here. I obsess over expenses and read the money blogs everyday. I get a lot of good info on saving money from WiseBread and sometimes info on deals from Consumerist. I do think as a society we need to talk more about money -- not talking about it is what got us into the state we are in now. I agree with fridawrites -- you should budget in fun money even if it is just a little bit. Bundling your internet/TV/cell phone should help -- there are many possible options for this, you can just call and ask the provider. In our household, we don't have Cable but Netflix is not negotiable. We must have it.


I am always impressed by how together you have it. I like the idea of not spending money on new things for a year. I'm off to read more about it.

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