We’re jumping way ahead in the book One Bite at a Time today to tackle Project 28: Create a regular monthly budget. Doesn’t that sound fun and exciting?! This is a project that we already do, but have been bad at tracking in recent months, so it’s a good project to work on again. My husband is actually the coordinator right now for a Dave Ramsey Financial Peace University class at our church, so it was an assignment in our class, too. (A great class, by the way! I recommend it for all. Maybe even our government. ;) But that’s another blog post.)
A monthly budget is simply deciding ahead of time how you will spend your money. In One Bite at a Time, Tsh recommends a zero-based budget. You determine what your monthly income is and decide how each of those dollars will be spent until you get to zero.
A budget is simply telling your money where to go. It isn’t restricting you from having fun, nor is it sentencing you to spend money where you’d rather not. Your money will already be going somewhere. Planning ahead with a budget is taking charge of your finances, not letting your finances be in charge of you. — Tsh Oxenreider, The Basics Behind a Budget that Works, Simple Mom. June 29, 2009.
I can’t say that I love making a budget or tracking a budget or always sticking to a budget. However, I do like the peace that comes from knowing that we can take care of our family, give some to those in need, save for future needs and wants, and stay out of debt.
I’m not an expert on finances, so I’ll just stop talking right now and direct you elsewhere, if you are looking for more information.
Here are several blog posts from Simple Mom:
- Warm and Fuzzy Budgeting by Charlie Park
- The Basics Behind a Budget that Works by Tsh Oxenreider
- How I Budget by Tsh Oxenreider
There are a few other projects that deal with finances, so we have more money talk to come. Don’t get too excited! ;)