This week I decided to get all technical and post what I've been eating and spending money on each day. Then I went and started the week by spending $9 on ice cream and $38 on dog food. Those two purchases used up over half of my budget for the week. I am REALLY determined to stay on budget this week or at least get as close as I possibly can. The little extra's like soda and peppermint bark, coffee at McD's and granola bars aren't helping BUT they're much better purchases than one $25 dinner somewhere.
The list of food is everything I've been eating and it is a pretty accurate depiction of what I generally eat. However it does not reflect what my husband spends money on or what he chooses to eat for breakfast, lunch, and snacks. He works at 4am so he usually eats a banana, yogurt, a few protein bars and then a totally random lunch of some sort before I feed him a dinner of either meatloaf and veggies, eggs and toast (that's our super low budget penny pinching dinner that we don't eat very often), chicken burgers and veggies, ground chicken taco salad... yep those are our regular dinners.
This week is a huge test for me. I'm not going to pretend to be stronger than I am. I'm slowing starting to lose faith in my ability to make this weeks budget. There's virtually no food in this house (just some bread and tea). My niece's birthday is coming up, Valentines is on Monday, we've a few squares of toilet paper left, almost out of dish soap, dinners have been boring and the peanut butter toast is getting old. I know I can go over budget and try and make it up next week but it's the principle really. I have set out to do something here. If I bend the rules and make exceptions and run over into the next week I'll lose it altogether. That's how I am, all in or all out. Especially since I've only just begun this battle I need to suck it up and go all in.
Additionally I'm hoping that this REALLY tight tough week will help me to put away that $2 a day for future purchases like DOG FOOD. Yeah, that would have been nice.
Addressing Melanie's comment: buying in bulk is wise and a great way to save money. I've never been very good at it and for now it's not an option. The main reason I purchase our dinner every evening (besides that I work at a grocery store and it's easy to pick up three or four things on the way out) is because it helps me to get only what we need. When I buy groceries for the week there's always something we don't want to eat and we end up spending extra on what we do. I always forget something essential and then I have to put a dent in the budget to get that un-anticipated thing. I rather enjoy picking up what we need, the absolute essentials and then knowing how much I have left for the rest of the week. I buy mostly what's on sale so I am saving some money. Also, I've always had a problem spending money before it arrives. I'm "enjoying" (I use that word loosely) learning how to spend the money I've alloted to each day. At least for now I think this is for the best.