Thursday, February 7, 2008

Financial Shape Up Check Up

I love new starts, new years, new weeks, new days. I love that we started a fresh budget at the beginning of the year & while everything hasn't gone perfectly each day is a new day--a chance to apply what I learned (sometimes the hard way) the previous day. I've listed out some of my goals for this year and our current status on those goals. Some of these goals are new. I think it's important to be in a constant state of evaluation.

Some may say that I'm starting too big, but I don't plan on everything being done tomorrow. I need challenges & variety. Some of these things are one time things, others will take all year (and then maybe some), but we're up for the challenge!

Prepare one "meatless" dinner every week: This is going to be a challenge for me. My hubby loves him some meat! My goal is to make a hearty meal without meat (any recipes would be greatly appreciated)

Fix up hubby's car and sell by April 15: We have no need for 2 cars. My husband's car needs some work though. He received a promotion and we've decided to use any extra money that comes with the promotion to do what we need to do to get the car ready to sell. I'm very blessed that my husband is "mechanically minded" and can do most of the work himself.

Set up ROTH IRA: Our company has set up a new retirement plan that requires us to have a ROTH IRA. I should have our set up by tomorrow and partially funded by the end of the month.

Read at least one book a month on finances and/or frugality: In January I read Tiwghtwad Gazette and Shop, Save, & Share. Last night I bought and began reading Total Money Makeover.

Set up and emergency fund: Our goal is to put $200 a month into savings. In January we were able to do $50. But starting tomorrow, we'll be able to put $100 into savings every other Friday!!

Cut down on grocery bill: I failed in this for January. I'm not sure what my problem was. I've been trying to incorporate organic foods into our diets. I've decided that I need to evaluate and really decide what is really worth buying organic. I've found some excellent resources and definitely have better direction for February. I think that adding one meatless meal a week will help as well. I'm not going to try and shave any amount off of our grocery budget, for this month, I'm just going to make it my goal to come in on budget.

Track Receipts: I'm great at saving receipts, but I think that it will be a real eye opener to track my receipts and see where every penny is going. Since we use cash I have a pretty good idea, but I still think it will be eye opening to see the numbers.

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