When you and your husband both work only 100% commission jobs, it’s probably smart to adhere to some sort of budget.
Just the word makes me shudder. B-U-D-G-E-T? Gross. I am a free spirit. I like to fly by the seat of my pants. Keeping money in tight little boxes and ORGANIZING them monthly is one of those things that I couldn’t do well even if someone paid me daily in Whitey’s butterscotch milkshakes. My Type A, attorney parents would be ashamed of my budgeting skills. They had me strictly budgeting my allowance in a ledger at age 6.
My older sister, Jill, had SO MUCH MONEY in her college, car, and personal savings account. Since we were required to save for a car and college, mine were existent but small. And a personal savings account? Never. Toys R’ Us, Limited Too, and Peese’s (our local candy store) were my best friends. (Therefore making the dentist my new enemy.) And that “spender syndrome” has been haunting me ever since.
So for some reason, I go on and marry a financial planner who is on 100% commission. God knew I needed some help in this area 🙂 Kevin and I have sat down a few times in our 3 year marriage and made a “budget” plan. What seems to screw with our “budget,” in my opionion, is the lack of continuity in how much money he makes (and probably our love of eating out and having fun. lol) But our bank account will NEVER look uniform if Kev says at Northwestern Mutual. That’s completely fine with me, becuase Kev is SERIOUSLY AMAZING at what he does! His “commission” set-up has really worked in our favor over the last couple years. We have been faithfully saving, chipping away at our fattie student loans in chunks, and of course giving our best and first fruits to God.
However, when we decided to adopt a baby…amongst other things that go along with adopting a baby and then Kev had a “lower production” month, it created a budget bust. We realized how “loose” our budget had become. We needed to tighten our financial belts. Dang. More than anything, we needed to know where all of our money was going. Yikes, talk about scary.
(Don’t worry, our adoption fund is completely UNTOUCHABLE until we get our baby. Your generous donations to our adoption are sitting peacefully in a separate account, hopefully singing like the Sirens, lulling our baby to us. =)
All this to say, we had a balls-to-the-walls budget meeting last night. The first in many months. My “homework” for the meeting was to go through our bank account for the last month and section out where we spent all our money. Let’s just say WHOA. (Disclaimer: I did probably spend a few hundred dollars on baby stuff, thinking that any day our baby would be here.) We must have been swimming in the olympics for how much we spent on groceries. BAH!! It’s so crazy to look at those numbers. HUGE reality check. You know what they say, “The first step to change is admiting you have a problem.” lol. I have a budget problem.
Awareness: it’s a good place to start.
SO, with the help of my awesome friend Emily, I am reading a book called “Shopping for Free: Shopping Secrets for Smart Women who know how to get Something for Nothing.” I have to say first, this author is NUTS. CRAZY. INSANE and absolutely BRILLIANT! I know I will never be as die hard as her, because organizational skills just weren’t given to me anywhere in my geneti codes. BUT, I think I can do better than I did last month. And then repeat that.
So…I’ll try to keep you updated. For now, I need to get back to carpet cleaning! (Did you know that you can rent a carpet cleaning machine for $18?! That’s what I’m talking about.)