Good morning, Mrs. Maker here- I hope that you are enjoying the budget tools we have provided so far. By now you should have about half of your monthly receipts saved up and a good idea of what money is coming in and going out of your house each month. We suggested that you highlight those areas on your budget or even with the receipts that you collected that weren’t necessities. For Mr. Maker and I that would include:
- Netflix and Hulu subscriptions. $12
- Cello lessons. $60
- Ice cream $15
- Daily Growler/Food Truck $22
As I mentioned previously, we aren’t asking you to give up lattes or anything. We do want you to be aware of where your money is being spent. If you have a month where the electric bill is higher than usual, you had to get new brakes, or you had a lot of friends getting married or having babies like Mrs. Maker did last year, you need to be able to cover those expenses and NOT on credit.
Mr. Maker and I look at our household budget using only one income. After all the bills are paid, the remaining money is divided between the above items and groceries since these are variable or non-necessity items.
Last month for example: After all bills were paid- The Maker family had $460 left in the budget. Based on my menu planning and meal prep, groceries were going to take up approximately $80 a week or $320 for the month. That would leave $140 for the remaining items above. That is where we begin to pick and choose what we want to pay for and what we need to do without or find another way to make it happen for less.
To give you some ideas of ways we could save just based on the above mentioned.
- We could walk to the United Dairy Farmer, pick up a gallon of ice cream and bring it home to enjoy on the patio. Spending about $5 and saving us $10.
- We could forgo the food truck at the growler and just have a pint of beer. The Daily Growler does not serve food so we would have the ability to bring our own in. I could make some sandwiches and a veggie tray at home and save us about $12 – or since Mr. Maker is a home brewer, we could forgo the trip all together and have a beer on our patio saving the entire $22.
- It is summer and our daughter doesn’t take cello lessons in the summer, that would put an extra $60 back in the budget for the three months of summer.
- With Netflix and Hulu while I put these in the non-necessity areas. With a lot of our favorite shows like, Game of Thrones premiering over the summer, we don’t want to do away with these services. I can do without ice cream but not without Jon Snow.
I would invite you to sit down as a family and look at your own budget. Kids have the best ideas of ways that you can still spend time together without spending money.
Menus, Grocery Budget, and Meal Prep are coming soon- but the basics the foundation for knowing what you have to work with is where you begin. We would love to hear some of your creative ways of saving a buck or two so please message or comment.