You guys, I survived my first month into this whole Minimalism and Budgeting plan and IT.WAS.NOT.EASY. Did you miss my posts on Budgeting and Minimalism? You might want to go back and read those so you get a sense of what my goals are for this new year! Honestly, even though it wasn’t easy, it wasn’t as difficult as I thought it would be. Sure there were temptations, but overall I’m pretty happy with the results for the first month. Let’s take a look back and see where I succeed and where I need to improve still.
I worked my butt off in my kitchen this past month. I cooked breakfasts, lunches and dinners. We ate out occasionally, BUT NOTHING like we used to. So I calculated our spending for food and this is what it looks like:
Total Spent: $605.00
Groceries: About $108.00 each week
Restaurants/Fast Food: About $43.00 a week
I’m actually really happy with that because I tried to be more aware of what I was putting into my cart at the grocery store and we ate at home a lot more than we used to. Thank goodness for Pinterest! For the restaurants/fast food, it looks like we ate out about once a week. I can’t complain with that at all! Could I do better, yes! Do I need to, no!
Ok so I did go to Starbucks, but I didn’t use any of my cash! I had gift cards from Christmas, so if I went to Starbucks I used those! So I spent ZERO money on Starbucks in January! As far as alcohol, Rob got some beer, but he had a gift card as well and I think he only spent like $4.00 out of pocket. We did great with the drink category in January!
Cutting Back On Things We Don’t Use/Need:
In January I went through my Beauty Closet and my Clothing and I donated to Hope House, a local charity. I also went through my books and I’m going to donate an entire huge container of books I no longer need. I used to keep every single book that I read, but honestly, I just kept my favorites. Everything else is going to be a book someone else can enjoy!
I also got rid of my old iPhone 6 that was just sitting around! I sold it on Ebay and made $250.00! I’m also planning on having a gently used makeup/skincare/purse sale on Instagram soon! I’m all about getting rid of things that are just sitting around that I don’t use! I’d much rather someone else be able to enjoy them!
I can still improve on this I’m sure and I’m still learning to not be so emotionally tied to an object.
Y’all I did so good with the budget when it came to purchases for January. So good that I was shocked myself when I looked at my transactions! I only purchased items that we really needed. No more Target Dollar Spot trips (I browsed but quickly walked away) or random Sephora purchases. I stopped looking at emails from stores and I didn’t go to the mall to browse while I was bored. That helped so much. This is what I did buy:
- Makeup at Sephora (I spent no money at all on this because I had an exchange and used a gift card to pay for the remainder of the balance) I bought a new foundation, primer and bronzer. All of which I needed!
- Ulta Online Order I purchased FAB Ultra Repair Cream for Rob because they were on sale for $10.00 and he uses it every single day and I replaced a curling iron I had because I needed a larger one. I used $35.00 worth of points, so my out of pocket costs were around $19.00.
- Book I really wanted to read The Nightingale and it was $9.99, plus I had a coupon!
- Birthday Gifts for my Nieces and my Father-In-Law
That right there is a miracle! I used to be the worst at making random, non-needed purchases. I’m really trying hard to work on where my money is going and what I’m spending it on! It’s not easy and I’m tempted every single day, but I figure even small changes have to help in the long run!
So if you were working on a new budget or you’re trying to de-clutter your life/home with random “stuff” that you no long feel that you need, let me know what you think worked and/or didn’t work for you! I’d love to know all of your tips! I’ll keep updating you monthly on my status. I don’t see this as something I plan on stopping anytime soon!
Thanks for sharing, I think this is really helpful!
I’ve always had a beauty budget, and I stick to it most of the time, or if I go over it’s by a few dollars only. When you have a goal you start having to make choices instead of feeling like you can buy everything, and I feel like it’s really helpful.
Christine C. says
and that was my downfall, I never made myself have a budget when it came to beauty and now I’ve got loads and loads of products and half of them I just bought because they were limited edition or something. Now, I’m sticking to it and not allowing myself to shop like that!
Leanna @ Being Leanna says
Looks like you did amazingly well! So proud of you and your restraint at the Dollar Spot at Target. I didn’t go inside once as I know it’s my downfall haha. Keep it up, you can do it!!
Christine C. says
Seriously, that Dollar Spot at Target is a budget killer!!!
Julie May says
WOW you did excellent lady! We are really bad about eating out wayyy to much. So that for me is the one we really have to work on!
Christine C. says
Thank you so much!!!!
Bourbon & Lipstick says
Oh my gosh, you did awesome! I’m so proud of you! We do okay on the food side – the past couple of weeks we’ve been busy and had a few social things so we’ve gone out more. Honestly we spend a lot on booze – especially beer. We need to cut back for many reasons! And my spending has been nuts! OMG! You have inspired me today!
Christine C. says
I’m glad that it was inspiring for you! I won’t lie, it wasn’t super easy, but I proved to myself that it could be done!!! We would normally spend a lot more on beer, but my husband recently took up making his own beer so he’s got a huge stock pile downstairs. So it is do-able, I just found I had to be hard on myself even when it pissed me off, ha!!!
Ashley LaMar says
Good job girl! That’s great!!! I definitely want in on that purse sale so remind me when you’re running that. I think eating out once a week is good. I’d be proud if I were you!
Lily Ayala says
You did awesome girl!! I am totally trying my best to do this with you…I however, didn’t do my greatest in January. We didn’t eat out as much, that’s for sure…so that’s a good. But I did spend money a couple of times at Target on things I didn’t really need personally — I guess more for the blog. I usually always hit the dollar spot for photo props…so I kind of justified the purchases because I have 2 sponsorship’s that I will be getting paid for. So it worked out…right? LOL! I also purchased a few new clothing items…sigh. But this month is starting off to a much better start! I haven’t purchased anything I don’t need and I have deleted tons of emails that might lure me in. LOL!
Paula @ thirteenthoughts.com says
Looks like you did great Christine! I recently got rid of so much makeup, clothes, shoes and purses and I’m left with a half-empty closet and it feels so good. I just had so much clutter around the house, my husband and I used to be the worst at this (him more than me, he’s a shopaholic lol) we’d just buy random little appliances we’d never use etc. We have this huge ass printer that hasn’t been used in 8 years and my husband just refuses to get rid of it lol I called our local Best Buy and they said they’ll take and will recycle it so I’m making Mark do that this weekend lol. Not having a bunch of things you don’t need or use anymore laying around the house feels SO good!
Chelsea Jacobs says
You are doing such a good job! Especially for just getting started!!
Go girl!! If you have any natural/green makeup or skincare when you do your sale, let me know!