I love going to my local thrift hops (they are hops cuz I have like four within my community. As much as this spending freeze is liberating…I do miss my thifting.
Debt. It’s my least favorite four letter word. It’s a virus that is far worse than my chronic illness. It can keep you up at night, sick with worry and angst.
It’s not easy to dig your self out. In a world of instant coffee to instant news, we want it to go away…right now, quickly, be done and gone. Sadly, it didn’t take me over night to get into debt so guess what? it’s going to take a bit to get out of it.
I’m just about half way through a ten plan to rid myself of debt. Since discovering Dave Ramsey, I’ve been working Baby Steps 1 and 2 for what seems like an eternity. Bright side is, each move that debt gets lower.
You gotta do the work!
When I wrote my Gathering Acorns post, I had just started using the Acorns app for future use down road for investments. However, I changed my mind. (I’m a woman, it’s what I do). Instead, I am using it as a way to grow my Emergency Fund to $1k. I am 1/3rd the way there…and I haven’t touched it! I’m actually very happy about this. Growing money ain’t easy!
Are you ready? Today starts the Spending Freeze challenge!!! Meals are prepped, all income for pay periods are accounted for and my cash flow is to zero. Let’s get this party started!
Just a quick reminder, follow me on Twitter for some daily commenting on this journey, plus there will be an upcoming YouTube video reviewing how I’m doing on my first ten days of the freeze.
We. Can. Do. This.
My Do’s and Don’t for This Month
- Cash Flow Budget Loaded into Everydollar
- Since I am not participating with the “Eat Only From Your Pantry”, I will be menu planning my breakfast and lunches. Due to my family situation, groceries are part of my cash flow and I do not consider that spending, it’s a budgeted item
- Consider this a game, the goal is to save at least $100 to add to my emergency fund.
- Have fun.
- Use what you got.
- Don’t give in to deprivation thinking. This will make you spend.
- If you are stressed, go for a walk
- You can shop, you just can’t spend.
- Keep a daily log if you need to see what you may have spent that day.
- Don’t use sink funds to pay other items.
Here we go!
Stop laughing, I can do this. I’ve tried before but failed. So why am I trying this again (in August, all thirty-one days). I failed before because I did not prep for battle. As always, I galloped toward the melee of “I’m going to do this” with out properly out-fitting myself with the battle plan.
Ok, Lissy, what is so different this time. Well, let me introduce Ruth Soukop to you. She the wonderful lady behind the blog Living Well Spending Less and the author of Unstuffed. I’ve been following her for about a year when I came across her 31 day spending freeze challenge (you know I love me a challenge).
This year, I picked August for my Spending Freeze. This is mostly due to the fact that I don’t have any holiday’s, birthday’s or appointments for the month. I equipped myself with all the emails that came with the challenge in three-ring binder and have begun my prep.
First step – don’t stock up. Use what ya got, or do without! (or borrow, barter, exchange)
Second Step – Inventory your resources. Check the pantry, freezer, you know the drill!
Third Step – Menu plan. Ugh, srsly, this is the worst step ever! I’m working on this prep step now. By the end of July I will have a meal plan for my breakfast and lunches…oy!
Forth Step – Give yourself an End Goal – Mine, I would like to put what I have saved towards my emergency savings.
Fifth Step – Do the activities recommended in the challenge (you can also pick up a kindle version of the challenge on Amazon.)
Sixth Step – Motivate yourself! I picked out some Dave Ramey quotes to add to the days that I’m thinking of tapping out of the challenge.
Seventh Step – Clear your schedule of money inducing commitments. Let your friends know that you’ll be staying in, celebrating financial success and you’ll have beers with them next month.
So, you up for the challenge? If so, follow me on twitter with the hashtag #DFKFreeze2016, I’ll be posting daily of my trials and tribulations of the challenge starting August 1st!
One more year to go on my la faillite, (google it) which means I better have some strong foundations built now to survive the onslaught of solvency. There are traps and pot holes waiting me out there! I get a “buy a car with us” mailer at least every two weeks and even a couple of credit card applications – SAY NO TO DEBT!
I took a day to restructure my Cash Flow according to the suggestions from Dave Ramsey I budgeted to zero and by July all my sink funds (car maintenance, etc) will be funded to date. I started out the year with five craft subscriptions and now I am down to two. Future purchases over $50 have a set budget and I’ve set two Sink Funds for car registration and road side assistance. (Home Girl don’t change tires, #sorrynotsorry).
Let me tell you what an emotional tidal wave of anxiety this created. Oy! You would have thought I was cutting off my fingers, one by one. I did walk away from the figures for about a week and realized, it ain’t as bad as I think. My bills are being paid. I am very blessed to be able to do that. Not so very long ago, I was stretching to the max and now I have a room to breathe. It’s like when you lose weight and put on a pair a pants that would cut off your circulation and now find you can breathe with comfort.
The Emergency fund is growing too, thanks to my many acorns.
My next hurdle it to pay off one last medical bill and prepare to pay taxes and student loans this time next year.
Each quarter of the year I take my little gold piggy to the market, where I deposit his insides into a coin machine. I generally request a gift certificate for Amazon since it allows me to have the whole proceeds (if you choose cash, it take almost 10%). The most I have received is about $30 but lately it’s around $20.
It’s the first quarter review here at the Keep. I have lots of things to work on and my accountability is lacking substantial evidence of being responsible and trust-worthy. More coming on that in an upcoming post.
So for this quarter, I will be re-working my budget based on Dave Ramsey’s worksheets, with a review of my cash envelopes, sink funds and improving my emergency savings strategy.
Ugh, Financial maintenance is a drag man.