The first Friday of every month the hubby and I are suppose to meet together over pizza to discuss how much we spent on the credit card (we charge everything to it and pay it off at the end of the month so that we can get points), how much more we want to pay down on the condo and how much we have in savings. We also discuss our savings goals.
The reason why we picked the First Friday of the month to go over all this is because all the bills have been paid and all the pay checks have come in. As good of an idea as I think it is (and I'm just biased because I came up with it and it has cool alliteration), we typically don't make time to do it. However, we have resolved to do it every month in 2008 and last night was the First Friday for February.
Before I say the number, I wanted to point out that most of the charges were from the first part of the month, before I had resolved to get my money under control. This was really my main "Stage Pink" day of looking at how I was spending. I guess it gives me a good point to go from.
I was shocked to discover that we had spent $4000 this month--not counting the new dining room table or the mortgage! I just don't understand where it all went. I mean, we looked at everything so I see it, but I still don't understand how easily two people can blow through 4 grand! Admittedly, about a quarter of that went to decorate our Great Room, which I think looks really nice. I also bought some stuff for my office (new desk) and a few random things for P's office. Also, it's a big month for birthdays in my family. So i know where it went and most of it was "one offs" so it's not like I would normally spend all that. But still...we didn't eat out hardly at all for the 2nd half of the month and I drastically cut back on the Starbucks habit so the figure is hard to look at and makes me wish that I had started this whole getting money under control thing at the start of the month rather than the middle of it :-P.
Don't get me wrong, it's within our means. Or would have been if I hadn't lost my job. I had a week gap between jobs where I wasn't working. We are post paid by two weeks so I'll get a half paycheck mid-month. The end of next month I will start getting my new normal size paycheck. With the increase in pay, the three week's worth will actually equal out to only a little under what I used to get at my old job.
It's just sad because we ended up having to use $600 from savings to cover our differences, but that's exactly what we have a buffer for. I guess it just goes to show you why we need an emergency reserve. If the job thing hadn't have happened, we would have been putting money into savings instead of taking it out which does make me feel a little better.
Maybe I should just look on the bright side. At least my paycheck didn't bounce, which I was a little worried about! :-P
I'll talk about the goals that P and I set up when we talk about general goals tomorrow.