I am guilty of not always using the resources I have at hand with wisdom and discretion. I am guilty of not always giving what is required of me. I am guilty of feeling justified in foolishness. But I am on a mission to change that. I kept track of our spending for the past three months (and I will continue to do so) and I have found some things that I need to change. Probably the biggest thing is that I have not been wise with my grocery budget. I think I have spent roughly double what I need to. So, my new goal is to spend about $75 per week. I already have a freezer and pantry filled with pork, beef, chicken, fruit slush, applesauce, green beans, green peppers, tomatoes, corn, peaches, pears, apples juice, cherries, cherry juice concentrate and strawberries. There is no reason I should spend more than $75 per week when I am really only supplementing the basics which are already stockpiled. However, I like to do most of my grocery shopping for a month at one time, so in the next couple of days I am on a mission to spend no more than $300 for the coming month and I am hoping to come in under budget. That amount will have to include household items as well, but I use cloth diapers most of the time, clean with baking soda and vinegar, and don't wash my hair every day, so those things should be minimal.
The other issue that I have found is that I am way behind in stocking up on clothing for my growing brood. I too often only buy what I think will fit them in the next six months or so. Recently there have been many times that they have grown into a new size "all of a sudden" and I am without what we need. So, I end up spending more money than necessary at the last minute. So, I am going to hit a couple of the best thrift shops in the next couple of weeks and begin to remedy that problem as well.
I have been pleasantly surprised in other areas, though. I have seen improvement in the amount of money we spend on snacks and drinks when we stop to buy gas. There has also been improvement in the amount that we shell out for meals away from home (even though the last couple of weeks would show otherwise). So this experiment has proved very valuable. Now, if you'll excuse me....I'm off to figure out the budget for the next two weeks. IF we can get through them without any cars breaking down (which would be a MIRACLE) we should be okay...Lord Willing!