So Far So Good

Finances are going pretty well.

We've had to tweak the budget a little here and there, but having it and the binder and envelope system has been a HUGE help.  I already can tell we have more money now simply because we're not allowing overdraft fees.  Using the Paypal debit cards was such a really bad habit.  Living like this is so much nicer.

An interesting side effect, is that I don't suddenly have the urge to go spend money when it get deposited.  We've been so used to a feast or famine life style here, but this system just cancels all that. Knowing I will have money actually budgeted to give to just me to spend on whatever I want, completely takes away any desire to sabotage the budget by overspending now and not being able to pay a bill and getting overdraft fees and other issues like has ALWAYS happened with every paycheck before.

I was hoping the tax refund would have been deposited already just so I would be able to pay off the cash advance places and never see them again, but one of them got the date of my paycheck wrong and thought I was late paying it so they deposited it.  Thankfully we now get paid on the last day of the month instead of the 1st, so the money was able to cover it.  I need to go write a new one so I can pay the house payment.  It doesn't have to be mailed til the 5th though so I'm holding off til then.  Come on IRS!!

Anyway, due to that unexpected bill and an auto draft I had totally forgotten Christopher had set up as a monthly EFT, I had to reduce what I'm budgeting for the Explorer payment. I wanted to get ahead on it, but we'll do that later.

I'm just so amazed that not only do we have money sitting in the bank, but it was a positive balance before this check was deposited, no overdraft. And I'm amazed that the house and car payments are caught up.  I'm not hiding when the door knocks because I'm dreading the light or water people to come turn off stuff. And I'm amazed I had room to compensate for the unexpected bills that popped up (like they will time and again I'm sure.)

Christopher feels a little more secure about what's going on at work, but not in the clear yet. So, we've agreed to put the flooring on hold since it's the biggest job and will cost the most. But he wants to paint really bad, and since we're going to paint, I want to replace the vent hood in the kitchen ($100 at Lowes).  Also we agreed on replacing the ugly orange chair in the living room, but can't agree on any chairs except one that's $600 at Pier 1, so I'm going to check used furniture stores still.  I'm still going to look for a cheap dresser for the entry way launchpad, and we agreed to either get nice chair cushions for all the dining chairs or (my preference) get 3-4 new upholstered dining chairs that'll match the living room side and can turn around to act as another comfortable seating area for watching movies.  Overstock has some amazing ones we both love, but we'll have to see what they have when we can afford them.  They have super cheap shipping on furniture too, so awesome. I also hope we can eventually get a matching living room chair in same fabric as whatever we get for the dining table.  They have some really nice ones.  But we'll decide on a budget for all that.  I think leaving $1000 in savings and not touching it will give us the peace of mind we need for now... just praying there's nothing to worry about and we get through Feb ok.

So out of the tax refund, we're now looking at:
$1250 pay off cash advances
$1000 savings
$200 ($50 to each daughter incl Corina)
$205 get Treadmill layaway out. (we decided not to make a payment this week yet, hoping to get the tax refund, but will make the min pmt to keep it from getting returned to stock if it doesn't come this week.)
$200 stove vent and paint etc.
$180 Faelyn's trip (already late and I'm worried about that)
$153 Christopher new phone (and hand his old one down to Rhiannon)
$150 pay on my credit card payoff agreement.
$50 Christopher spending money

I asked C if he wanted to return the treadmill, but he said no, we got a good deal on it and he has to get healthy.  Especially if he has stress from work.

Hope y'all are doing well so far this year!