Let’s talk money.
You’ve seen in my plans for the year some money related goals. I want to share with you how 3/4 of the way through January I already feel like I’m on a better foot than I was at the end of last year. I think to sum it up it comes down to FOCUS.
1. I opened up a blog checking account so that all blog related expenses can come directly out of that account. This is basically the account for all fun things around the house that are not necessities. AJ doesn’t count on this money when paying the bills and we always talk about our big projects like drywall or our stairway makeover and that’ll come out of our joint account. I wasn’t very good at sticking to a budget because we didn’t really have one so this has been amazing to manage these expenses in one spot without it getting tangled in receipts for food, toiletries and clothes for the kids. For example… our house felt bare and boring after Christmas decorations came down. Out of this account I bought a fern from Trader Joe’s and divided it so that we’d have some springy looking greens throughout the house. Was it necessary? Definitely not. Was it something that makes our house a little happier and more welcoming? Yes, which is why it’s coming out of this account.
2. Making our goals smaller and more defined has helped me narrow down what to spend fun money on. Last year I felt like I was scattered in trying to accomplish a million things. I learned the hard way that being so scattered is a really stupid way to manage your time, mental state and finances. When I go to the store now I’m not thinking about the millions of things I’d love to have for our projects… I’m thinking about a couple of specific items… like when I found this orb at Home Goods I knew it would work perfectly for our goal to jazz up the stairway.
3. Because I don’t want to blow the budget with what I spend on blog projects I made a list of spending priorities for this month or the next few months. This has helped me see exactly where I want our money to go so that I don’t spend it on 25 hot chocolates at Dunkin Donuts.
4. We asked for gift cards galore to Home Depot for Christmas and that’s the only place where we asked for gift cards to. We wanted to be able to put them into purchasing stair treads or drywall. We chose drywall and I’ll have an update on the great (but very unfinished) looking living room next week. We were focused in what we wanted for our house and we planned accordingly. See the awkward line of wall board in the photo below?
5. Cheer yourself on! I did a project for Houzz and made some money that is going to help us pay off a bill. Knowing that I helped pay off the bill is making me pretty excited to figure out ways to make some extra moula to pay other things done (I’d love to see our car paid off this year!). I’m brainstorming some furniture makeovers…