In order to live up to the frugal part of my name, I’ve been tracking expenditures to make sure I don’t wildly overspend. I started doing this last summer when I was an intern in DC (also an expensive city) and had virtually no wiggle room in my teensy intern-sized budget. At the time I kept track of every single purchase I made. Now that I’m back to being salaried and am not quite so paycheck-to-paycheck (thank goodness for not having to pay for health insurance out of pocket anymore!), I’m only noting food purchases. That constitutes the vast majority of my spending anyway, since I’m not much of a clothes/jewelry/you name it shopper, so I have a good idea of where my money is going.
To make my budgeting and tracking more precise, I’ve organized my spreadsheet in two ways: 1) I’ve started tracking spending weekly, so that I can see my total at the end of each week rather than waiting until the end of the month; and 2) I have one column for grocery purchases and another column for eating and drinking out. I decided to set my fiscal week to run Friday through Thursday. This way, I start with the weekend and go through the work week.
How did I do this past week? Ideally I want my spending budget to fall within $400 or $500 per month, so I have $100 in my head as a rough weekly goal. I went over budget this past week, mainly thanks to a weekend filled with good eats (prix fixe brunch at Fred’s) and drinks (craft beers at Beer Culture), and treating my significant other, who is most definitely worth it. 🙂
|Groceries||Food & Drink Out|
This coming week will be a little more austere!