I know it's not the "B" word you're probably thinking, but "Budgeting" is the word I'm talking about!! I just don't like it!! I like to just spend on whatever I want to and not worry about next week or month or year and how much money we should be putting away. I'm very much a 'fly by the seat of my pants' kind of gal. Neither my husband nor I are real savvy when it comes to money, which makes it tough at times. The good thing is he's definitely the practical one of the two of us and is not a spender like I am:)
I've been known to put a budget together, but after a couple of weeks and a fun shopping trip:), I usually blow it and give up. I've decided though, that it's time to get serious about our finances and our future. Now don't worry, we're paying all the bills just fine and we have a retirement plan, but I know there is so much more we could be doing better with our money. I've really been convicted about being better stewards with what we're blessed with and I know that without sticking closer to a budget, it won't happen. I need the discipline of a budget or I'll blow it....I know myself too well:)
It's crazy when I think back to when we were first married and wondered how we were ever going to survive financially, especially when we made the decision for me to stay home with our kids. When I think about what Scott was making back then as a youth pastor in a small church, I can't believe we even had enough money to eat. At the time I didn't like being what I considered to be poor, but I'm so glad we went through that now...it really makes me appreciate how far we've come. I can remember my dad sitting me down after I got engaged to Scott and asking me if I realized how much money youth pastors make...I don't think I really did, but at that time I didn't care....I was just in love and that should have been enough...right?? I realized real fast that it was not!! Those first years having to learn about money (or lack there of) was hard for me. We still laugh about me crying one night early in our marriage about not having any money to spend shopping because that was my hobby (yes, I consider it a hobby:). Being the compassionate, sensitive guy that he was, he told me that I needed to find a new hobby!! I always tell him that he can never say I married him for his money (or his sensitivity)...it had to be love:) We've come a loooonnnnnggggg way let me tell you. We have way more than we need and live a great life...and shopping is still something I love to do....I've just learned how to bargain shop (most of the time:)!
So on Tuesday, the first day of November, I went to the bank and took cash out for groceries, clothes, entertainment, etc. and put it in envelopes (yep, the old envelope system). I'm more determined than ever to stick with it...and I feel like I'm ready for it! For me, this means that my weekly (or bi-weekly) trips to Columbus to shop are not going to be happening as often, but I know that I don't need any more shoes or any more clothes though so it's ok!! Believe it or not, I'm actually kind of excited about it! We always talk about how we'd like to do more and give more and I really believe that in sticking closer to a budget it'll allow us the opportunity to do just that! There are so many people in the world who have nothing....in fact, I heard just a few weeks ago that if your family earns more than $50,000 a year, you're considered to be in the top 1% in the world....by the world's standards we are rich!! For me though, I don't want it to be about being rich, but about giving back and helping others have a better quality of life. I'm so thankful for all that has been given to me and my family....it's time for me to focus on giving back.
So another big step has been taken in my countdown to 40 and I'm growing so much in the process! I love the accountability and encouragement I've received from so many that follow my blog!! I appreciate the kind messages and dialogue that has come out of it. I'm so thankful today for all of you!!