Saturday, January 30, 2010
Adventures in Extreme Budgeting Challenge - Day One
Well, today was payday. Under more normal circumstances, this would be cause for a small celebration but I'm furloughed (meaning, my salary has been cut by 10% each month) even though my expenses haven't changed. I had already put together a spending plan for the month which included my normal bills: mortgage payment and food, car note and insurance, credit cards, student loan payment, cell phone bill, gas for car. But I also had to add to this list, repayment ofnthe credit card that my husband used to pay for my car repairs in November. I also have to double up on a credit card payment this month because I maxed out the card on basic expenses like gas and food. So yeah, I'm up shit's creek right now and my side hustle doesn't begin until March. In the interim, I will be living off of $40.00. What this means is that my discretionary spending for the month of February is $40 total.
I've never spent less than $100/month on discretionary spending so this is really going to be an adventure in extreme budgeting. However, if I can survive this test, I will be back in the black again and my side-hustle earnings will help boost my payment on my credit cards and allow for some money to go into savings.
I did make two separate discretionary purchases today. The first was for $5.12 from the Dollar Store. I needed to purchase some cassette tapes so I could record an interview I was conducting for an article I'm working on. I found the tapes for $1.60 but the store I was in had a $5 minimum purchase policy in order to use a debit card so I also got some Ziploc bags (which we needed), and a bottle of rubbing alcohol (which we also needed. The second purchase could have been avoided had I not let myself get hungry. I spent $4.69 at Jack-in-the-Box on food I have no business eating. This has to stop. The reason I have no savings and living pay-check to pay-check (besides this furlough mess) is that I'm not planning ahead which in turns means I'm living by default instead of by choice.
Even though I look forward to coming out of the end of February, more financially stable and happy, I've got a feeling that with this challenge, February is going to feel like the longest month on record.
Posted by clevagirl73 at 1:57 AM