Budgeting fun!

Today I finally went to the gym! After Jon and I argued till 2am (apparently planning a wedding is not easy and you will fight), I didn’t manage to drag myself out of bed till 10am. The luxuries of being off work! Kassie and I were texting first thing this morning about our Friday night plans and she invited me to the gym at noon! Perfect! I knew it would be a short workout since it’s on her lunch break, but better than nothing! I made some breakfast (I’ll do a WIAW tomorrow when I’m not lazy) and ate and then headed out to get her. We ran for 10 minutes on the treadmill and then did a few legs. That was really it. Then she had to get back to work (we typically have more time but had to go to the bank first).

I ran some errands and got same pictures framed and bought a new shower curtain (score! I LOVE IT!) for mine and Jon’s bathroom. Then I came home, did a shoulder and bicep workout with my 10# free weights cause I have to get my gym body back for the wedding, and then ate, showered, and went to class.

I sat in traffic for an hour and 45 minutes tonight to get to class! It took less than 20 to get home! But I really like this professor so I almost feel like it’s worthwhile. And my lab partner that I liked so much last semester is in my class too! I think I’m just going to make a plan to either hit up the gym or study in the area and leave way ahead of rush hour. I can’t waste that much time two days a week!

Anyway, I was asked to talk a little about my budgeting. So this is how I do it. I add up all my bills for the month (mortgage, condo association fee, power, gas, cable, phone, car and health insurance, and the gym). Those are all basically set fees. The gas and power vary slightly, but not much. So I set that as the high end. I factor in what I spend on gas and food (which is insane- about $350 on gas per month and $550ish for food for two at the grocery store). I add in a general amount for necessities other than food (aka: my Wal-Mart fund, even though I don’t use Wal-Mart anymore cause they’re ghetto near downtown). Then I add in my fun fund. I used to do $35 a week. I didn’t set one last night but I did set $125/mo as a house fund. We’re allotting $7,000 for our honeymoon, so we need to start saving for that.

My budgeting is a bit different because I’m not salaried, however. I need to have approximately $2,300 for my cost of living. I add in $125 for home stuff (I want new rugs!!), saaay $150 a month for “fun” (eating out, clothes, whatever), and then I will probably save about $500 monthly for our honeymoon. So I look at my total out every month and then I calculate on my fancy work calculator how many hours I need to work to make that. I easily clear the amount I need to make with my base of 120 hours of work a month. However, I also like to save for when my car messes up or I need a new AC unit at the condo or I tear the ligaments in my thumb and don’t work for 3 months. So I obviously want to work extra. Then I calculate how much extra I want to make and set my goal number of hours at work according to that.

Anyway, once I set my top limits, I keep a book with me in the car cause I don’t track things on my phone other than running and the daily lives of my cats. Then I tally up everything I spend and categorize it into the sections I said (necessities, fun, food, gas) and whatever I don’t use from that goes into savings (or right now, paying off my floors).

So like I said, my budgeting is different because I’m not salaried. I don’t work a set number of hours in a week even. If I feel like making the big bucks, I schedule myself 60 hours in one week and make time and a half for 20 hours. And I do that occasionally. How people budget on a set income isn’t my speciality, however, I really do find keeping a notebook with you to write everything down helps! I used to add it up every Sunday (I haven’t started yet) so that I’d know how much I have left in each area. Occasionally if I was way under on my gas allowance, I’d put it towards fun. But I try not to make a habit of it. Also, I typically go 2-3 weeks with spending my usual way at the start of a budget to track exactly what I spend my money on to help set the top limits. I already have a general idea because I’ve budgeted before. I also am sort of a bad budgeter because I refuse to cut corners on things like food. We won’t eat out, but I’m not about to buy cheap meats. I just try to cut out the excess spending (like shopping trips with Laura or getting my hair done whenever I want).

Anyway, we’ll see how this goes. Jon and I are starting our tracking on Sunday. We don’t share with each other what we spend now and I have no idea how much he makes (I know his hourly rate and he knows mine, but I don’t keep up with that). I don’t even know what’s in his bank account. Since we’re merging bank accounts eventually, we need to see how the other person spends before committing to that. Otherwise we’re staying separate. This will be interesting though because I haven’t actually budgeted in about a year and I do make a very comfortable amount of money, so the urge isn’t there as much. But with our upcoming wedding, honeymoon, and Jon’s school and hopefully my future school, we need to be aware of this.

This was probably boring. And probably not helpful. But I’ll let you guys know how our joint budgeting is going once we start on Sunday. 



5 thoughts on “Budgeting fun!

  1. Thanks for sharing this. I find it so interesting to see how people budget and I’m really starting to work on it. Thank you for sharing though seriously.

    • You’re welcome! I did it cause you asked for it! I think everybody budgets way differently! I’ve been so curious to try money envelopes but Jon said he wouldn’t let me carry that much cash, haha. Probably smart. I don’t even lock my locker at work. So I do what I can to stick to our set amounts!

  2. Budgeting is hard enough when you have a set salary but I really can’t imagine for people like nurses who don’t and also those in the restaurant industry. I mean, they never know how much they will take home with work and tips. I’m glad you’re making it work though.

    Most of my pre-wedding fighting was with my in laws who were planning the wedding rather than my husband. Neither of us were super excited and I just wanted to go to the courthouse, his mom wanted us to do the wedding. It was a good wedding though, as we had delicious food that people are still talking about. I think that’s really why most people came anyway, haha.

    • Well, I ALWAYS work 120 hours in a month, so I know what my absolute minimum pay will be (and is definitely enough to pay bills and do other things with). So everything I make on top of that is extra. I aim to work at least 140 hours a month but really like my 150-160 hour months, because then overtime typically kicks in every week! And although nurses aren’t salaried, most nurses have set hours they work and those that don’t are typically that way cause they don’t need the money!

  3. Glad you made it to the gym!

    I wish I could just work extra hours like that, I’d be working a ton all the time to payoff my student loans. I’m salary unfortunately and my current employer pays me less than what some starting teachers make. I usually do a spreadsheet of all my bills for every month and each week I look at what needs to go to bills and figure out how much I can set aside in my savings that week and how much I can spend for myself for the weekend. It works out well and I am starting to see how excessive spending will make me live paycheck to paycheck. But if I can budget even just a little, I no longer have to live that way.

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