Cash Budgeting, Again

One of the biggest causes for my anxiety is money.  I mean, not that our needs won’t be met because they ALWAYS are, but because I’m a major spender.  Like major major.  Pretty much any time there’s money in my … Continue reading

What I love, like, dislike, and am working through

Gosh.  This week has been long.  And tough.  And helpful.  And growth-producing.  And strengthening. I wasn’t deeply depressed.  I wasn’t hopeless or suicidal.  I just struggled a bit.  I just wanted to sleep all the time.  Struggled with doing things … Continue reading

Mental Stability by Living Out My Values

I had my three month appointment with my psychiatrist on Thursday. It’s always interesting to see her because somehow despite the fact that she sees a ton of patients and only sees me every three months, she remembers details about … Continue reading

Meal Plan, January 5th through 18th

The dates for my meal plan aren’t typical… With the holidays, camping, school starting, etc, things are kind of wonky.  Haha.  So, I’m just being real here and sharing that it’s not always exactly perfect.  We just work with what … Continue reading

How Balance 365 Fits into Our Family Finances

We have been flooded in (again).  So I decided to process through some things and spend time getting organized. No makeup Monday! I have been struggling to figure out what habit to focus on next in my program.  I was … Continue reading

Compulsive Buying, Cash Budgeting, and 31 Days of “Living Well and Spending Zero” (Yes, Again)

So… I’m not sure if my anxiety last week was medication after all.  I have been anxious about one thing in particular and I made some decisions and have been feeling better.  Only time will tell.

This is a very honest post.  I’m hoping there will be others who can relate and join me in this!

One of the biggest things that causes me anxiety is money.

You see, I’m learning that I am a compulsive spender.  It can be due to my obsessive/compulsive nature, part of my addictive nature, part of my bipolar, or I’m just a plain old spender.  Regardless of what the reason is, I get a rush out of spending.  I have never been able to save, and I spend every cent I have.  I often go negative in my account because I don’t think about the little things that come out of my checking account like Netflix.  So I will have spent every cent, then Netflix will come out and I am negative.  I have been spending every cent on books and curriculum, or online groceries (walmart.com and boxed.com).  Often, I have spent so much money on credit.  When I was homeschooling all of the kids I would constantly buy curriculum on credit, sell it, and buy again.

Poor Robert has been trying to pay off debt, and I remembered last week that our credit card on my account on Math U See’s website.  So, I bought her math for next year on credit, once again.  The interesting thing about that purchase is that I was feeling very anxious.  I had laid down to rest because of it and I remembered that we still had our credit card on our account (this is one that I had paid off with out income tax refund but not closed).  I got a rush and felt no anxiety for a little bit while I purchased it.  I was very excited about it.  Then once that excitement wore off, I felt guilty and anxious again.  If Robert wasn’t the one to pay the bills, I would have hidden it from him.  But since I know he will see the statement I confessed to him what I had done.  He reminded me that paying that off will take a few months, and it has set us behind again.  He wasn’t mad, just confused.  I ended up closing that account and have no more ways to buy on credit.

I also spent all of the money that Robert gives me for groceries and gas on books (good old Amazon, used curriculum groups, Rainbow Resource, and our writing website), and online groceries (not all was needed).  Hundreds of dollars.  Some things that I bought we needed.  We bought groceries at HEB and spent almost $100 (not bad, really).  Gas was necessary.  I bought some t-shirts at our camp store here so that I had some clothes that fit better (I guess this wasn’t completely necessary).  I paid for counseling for Karis and me.  Etc.  But I spent a lot of money on things that either we didn’t need or I could have saved up for.

Now what?

Time and time again I have proven that I cannot be trusted with any kind of card.  Credit or debit.  If I have it in my account, I will spend it online.  If I have any credit line open, I will spend it online.  Do you see a pattern here?  Online shopping does it every time.  This coming week I have 5 packages coming!  And that doesn’t include how many packages that came in last week!

The only way we can solve this is to take away my ability to buy online, which means going to cash only.

We had the opportunity to learn a lot about managing money a few years ago.  Our friends here at camp taught a Dave Ramsey class.  We bought the materials and only went a few times.  In fact, Robert went, not me.  I’m the one that should have gone.  Today I pulled out those materials, and I’m currently listening to the CD’s.

I also dusted off the envelope system.

We don’t have a house to pay off (part of Robert’s income is a free house!), and we don’t care about building wealth, but the rest is applicable.

I also pulled out another book that I’ve had called Living Well Spending Less.  I did some reading in it yesterday and came across a section that talked about doing a zero spend month to kick start things.

So, that’s what I’m going to do.  31 Days of Living Well and Spending Zero.  Well, it won’t necessarily be ZERO spending, but only essentials.  I bought the kindle book (I thought it was $0, but turns out that’s only for kindle unlimited, oops).  It’s a day-to-day plan for how to live this out.

What does that look like for me?

I’ve tried this no spend month many times and quickly failed.  Obviously I wasn’t committed, but more importantly, I was too tempted by being able to buy things online.  This is part of my pattern.

What am I allowed to spend money on?  Perishable food (as little as possible), gas, counseling, doctor appointment, and medicine (my medical and counseling is the most expensive part of our month).  Anything else will be saved.  I’m planning to be able to buy the rest of the curriculum that I need by the end plus have money saved up.  To buy this curriculum, I will hand Robert the cash and he’ll make the online purchase.  I think this is going to work nicely.

For once I’m hopeful.  It’s going to take a lot of work, but I think it’ll teach me to be more content.  That’s my goal.  Hopefully with this kick start I will be better with money.  We’ll see!

 

Grocery Geek, Part 2

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I ordered from Boxed:

Charmin toilet paper

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Barilla pasta sauce

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Barilla pasta

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Hunts diced tomatoes

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I plan on ordering from them once a month, spending $50-75.  This will keep us stocked up on things that I can stock up on.  (I ordered a ton from them with money that I made selling curriculum last week, so that should keep us going.)

I had Robert pick up a few things at HEB when he was there Friday (stuff that I didn’t think to buy and/or stuff that I forgot).

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  • 3 dozen eggs
  • 2, 12 packs of HEB Coke Zero
  • 4lbs of ground beef
  • Grape tomatoes (the orange ones are awesome)
  • Onion powder
  • Crest toothpaste
  • Cauliflower
  • Yellow squash (2)
  • Zucchini (2)
  • Chocolate chips (large bag)

Today, we picked up a few things from the little grocery store (Lowes) in Rocksprings.  I won’t be able to go by a store anymore for the next few weeks (because of meeting with my sponsor and counselor after AA).  I don’t want to make a special trip just to buy a few things.  So we are officially stocked for two weeks (actually a bit more than that because we’ve decided to eat in the dining hall more than I originally planned… so the food I bought, especially the meat, will last through the month).

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  • 2 packages of chicken thighs (less than $3 each package!)
  • 1 package drumsticks (less than $3)
  • Avocados (4)
  • Flour tortillas (2)
  • Shredded cheese (large bag)
  • Butter (1lb)
  • Julios salsa
  • Sour cream

I made our monthly meal plan based on what we have, so that should save us lots!  We will need things like milk, produce, etc.  I’m working on writing meal planning posts for the month.

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Here are pictures of what we have stocked up on (except for the few things I’m still waiting for from Boxed):

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I love having a stocked pantry, fridge, and freezer.  Maybe it’s a woman thing, but it just makes me feel content and helps me know we are taken care of.  God has provided all of this!