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4 Bumps

What is the best way to stick to your budget?

A lot of our finances go to eating out lately, because I'm so late in my pregnancy and I'm too tired to cook half the time. I want to figure out a way to construct a realistic budget plan and stick to it!

Answer Question
 
kashikirino

Asked by kashikirino at 11:55 PM on Sep. 4, 2010 in Money & Work

Level 5 (94 Credits)
Answers (14)
  • when you cook, cook enough to last for 3 days so that after that for the next 3 days, you dont have to cook.
    PURPULbutterfly

    Answer by PURPULbutterfly at 11:56 PM on Sep. 4, 2010

  • I don't take my debit and credit cards with me, just some cash. especially when i'm at work...because on my breaks I'd probably just go shopping. however, this isn't practical for some people because in an emergency, you might NEED your cards.
    erinwhitt

    Answer by erinwhitt at 11:57 PM on Sep. 4, 2010

  • I kept a spread sheet to figure how much I needed monthly... for food, walmart (household), gas, pocket money, rx's, etc.... it came down to I can run my end of the household on $200 a week. Hubby does a spread sheet for the bills - so we always know how much we need and how much is available. That's how we keep our head above water any ways.

    Morgain

    Answer by Morgain at 12:01 AM on Sep. 5, 2010

  • I have used gift cards to help me budget. $150 a week for groceries on a gift card, $40/week for gas on gift card and etc. I have also opened several bank accounts, one for bills, one for checks and the other one for everything else. We don't touch the first two.
    ChicaThis

    Answer by ChicaThis at 12:02 AM on Sep. 5, 2010

  • Keep your ass and credit cards out of the department store and under NO circumstances walk within a 50 mile radius of a shoe sale
    Dajennible

    Answer by Dajennible at 12:07 AM on Sep. 5, 2010

  • Does dh cook? My dh cooked at the end of my pregnancies. I know that boy can open up a can of tuna! lol. He can make tuna fish sandwiches, you would actually be surprised at how easy it would be for him to create a simple nutritional meal, in light speed time. Grill a lot of chicken breast, at our store it is $1.39 a pound this weekend for a whole breast. I bought tons extra to freeze. If he barbeques, then cook a bunch of it and have it in the week. Make different meals with it. Same with hamburger. Two pounds of chuck is what is called for the Lipton onion soup meatloaf, the receipe is on the box. That one,,is super easy. You just mix a couple ingridients into the meat and throw it in a pan and put it in the oven for an hour...Check out the crock pot groups here in cm as well, you will be amazed at how easy, but tasty these meals can be...
    beyondhopes

    Answer by beyondhopes at 12:09 AM on Sep. 5, 2010

  • These ladies hit it on the head! I dont use my debit/credit cards anymore. I only use cash so I can see what I spend. I cook LARGE meals.
    4xsthetrouble

    Answer by 4xsthetrouble at 12:15 AM on Sep. 5, 2010

  • Set an amount and stick to it. If you can't, go to a cash only system - when the money's gone, it's gone. If you run through your gas money in 3 weeks, you walk to work the 4th week. If you go through your food money in 3 weeks, you'll be eating rice or Ramen for the 4th week.
    I completely understand that you're exhausted and don't have energy to cook in the evenings. Start making a few freezer meals on the weekend, like meatloaf, chili, casseroles that you can throw in the crockpot during the day or just stick in the oven to heat/cook. You can also plan for easy meals, like spaghetti, pancakes, or sloppy joes, during the week. If you plan it out and write down your ideas, it's easier to prep and cook ahead of time.
    michiganmom116

    Answer by michiganmom116 at 12:17 AM on Sep. 5, 2010

  • I think you answered your own question. You just need to be realistic. If you know you're going to eat out once or twice a week then budget for it. Also tell yourself (and your husband) that when the money is gone it's gone. You aren't getting any .more.

    You can also eat cheap. Look for coupons, kids eat free, and BOGO entrees.

    Keeping stuff on hand that makes a quick and easy meal works great too. Pre-made pizza crusts is cheaper than buying a pizza. Stuff for vegetarian sandwiches, left overs and frozen meals also work wonders.

    Congrats on the pregnancy!
    Erica_Smerica

    Answer by Erica_Smerica at 1:04 AM on Sep. 5, 2010

  • I created a budget worksheet and printed & laminated it, and stuck it on our fridge with magnets. I update the worksheet once a week with how much we've spent for groceries, for example, what bills have been paid, and how much money we have left in checking and how much income we are expecting for the rest of the month.
    MommaofH2

    Answer by MommaofH2 at 9:47 AM on Sep. 5, 2010

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