It's January. I don't do resolutions so much, I do revolutions. In an effort to find the large gaping hole in our budget - you think something that big would be obvious, no? - I've created, ahem, a budget. I mean, I've tweaked and am enforcing the budget we use anyway. Something here is costing us far more than it should, and darn it, I'm going to find it. My suspicion is that it has something to do with the grocery store, and my almost daily appearances there-to. I've slacked on list making (gasp!), I've let the coupons expire unused, and I find I'm always short of something. Too often the quick run to the store for a $2.19 dozen eggs becomes a $30+ ice cream and "it was on sale!" three bag extravaganza. No more. (Well, I hope not.)
One of my RSS feeds the other day provided a link to this gem - Free Envelope Template and Tutorial. I have no interest in making my own envelopes, but the system reminded me of the way I budgeted when I was in college. It worked then, maybe it can work now. I've liberated the envelopes from some twee stationary and repurposed an old DayRunner binder 'cause ya know, I don't have such a jam packed schedule that I need to be running around with *my book* like I used to. Plus I have an iPhone. <-same function, much better application. I've got a grocery envelope, I've got one for gas, one for misc household spending like stamps or hollow wall anchors, and one for my discretionary funds - my coffee mostly, but perhaps the occasional yarn or fabric indulgence. My sorted, clipped, ready to use coupons are in there, and so are all my store discount cards. The big bills will come right out of the bank account, so no checks, no credit cards, no debit card. More money? Maybe. We'll see how long this lasts.