Well, it is only 10am and I’ve made a pork casserole and there is a vegetable curry bubbling away on the hob so I’m taking a moment to think about how to plan April. I know it is still March but my pay days don’t exactly fit in with the conventions of the calendar! I thought I would wait until the 1st to kick off with my April challenges but by then I would be nearly a week into my months budget and, since this blog is primarily meant to be about managing my finances, it doesn’t really seem to make sense.
I did pretty well with my March goals – I saved £500, I started my holiday and Christmas funds, I stuck to my budgets, I sorted out all of our household paperwork and I decluttered our bedroom and bathroom. I didn’t, however, declutter every room. But it’s close enough for me to be happy 🙂
Keeping this blog has been really interesting – allowing me to see what areas need to be adjusted and giving me a clearer picture of what I am trying to do. I think I’ve proved to myself that I can still save more than ever before and still have a few treats. It has also revealed to me which treats are important to me and which I can live without! I said at the start that my goal was to stop spending, start saving and make the most of what I have. This still holds true, though it seems I am able to do a little bit of spending without compromising my goals overall. This will work if what I do buy is thought through in advance and is something I really need or will genuinely get a bit of fun out of! However, these extra spends will only take place if I have achieved my savings first – I’m keeping my eyes on the prize.
I’ve decided that I am going to follow the lead of the lovely Frugal Trenches with a spot of daily tracking and am also going to challenge myself to do one thing every single day until the end of April that will take me a step closer towards my goals. These things will mostly be of a thrifty nature such as:
- Making the most of what I already have: Making over something that no longer provides a function but could do with a bit of work, home improvements, decluttering (no, I haven’t given up on that!), organising my things better so I can find things I need and make full use of them, reading books I own but haven’t read yet and so on
- Doing things for free: This is linked to the above really, but I see this including getting out and about a bit more (I live in a gorgeous area and I don’t go out for walks nearly enough), keeping up with my library visits and any other things I might discover along the way
- Financial management: keeping on top of my finances in general, making sure I am putting back money for my different ‘funds’, trying to make a bit extra through selling things I don’t need anymore or buying things to go in my gift boxes
- Considered spending: I’m giving myself a budget to buy two books this month and will also buy something new (and brilliant, obviously) for my wardobe if I have funds available after completing my savings for the month. The rationale behind this is that this will prevent any feelings of deprivation that might lead to a full-scale shopping bender! I want to slowly build a better wardrobe over time, preferably full of things that aren’t going wear out in a nano-second. I have £20 a week for general spending (going out or whatever) though I have a little bit on top of this left in case of last minute or special occasions.
There’s the plan! I’ll be back later to make my first daily tracking entry. And, to top things off, it looks like the sun came out right on schedule…