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The Final Lap Begins, But February Looms

I am super excited about today’s post because I have decided what I am going to do for my February challenge! But first things first…update on January…I did spend some this past week but it was for my boyfriends birthday and I had planned on that. I am a little concerned as my grocery budget is used up for the month but I think I can finish off the last 5 days with no problems. So, that being said, let’s look a February…

I have been discouraged about how my clothes have been fitting but I hesitated doing an exercise challenge because of a foot problem that still needs a few weeks to heal. But I have also really been discouraged by the clutter in my house. So I have decided to take on two challenges in February. The first is a 28-day ab workout. This is something I can easily do without aggravating my foot. Plus it should only take about 5 minutes a day.

My second challenge intrigues me. It is a different space every day to clean out. I had decided already I should try to take a load once a week to either the dump or the thrift store (depending on the load). This particular list includes husbands and kids but I can adjust those. When it talks of spouse closets and such I can use that to work on summer closet or finish off if I got behind.

My goal with both of these is not to stress if I miss a day. But I will simply skip whatever day I missed and continue on with the corresponding day number.

So, five days left to go of my financial fast and, in spite of a few slip ups, over all I have been able to get back a hold of my spending habits as well as get my finances on the road to recovery. I will continue through February to cut back on spending and by March I should be able to start building up my savings again.

January:
12 30s And A New Year
Day One The New Quest Begins
It Shouldnt Be This Hard This Soon
Scrimping and Saving
Compulsive Saving
Sighing and Rejoices and Too Many Similarly Sounding Titles

February:
The New Adventure Has Begun
Rest Day
Catching Up
I Just Dont Care
The End Of February And Fresh Starts

Sighing and Rejoices and Too Many Similar Sound Titles

Sigh

I spent $3 on iTunes.

“But it’s only $3” you might say.

But that is how it begins isn’t it? $3 today, $5 tomorrow, maybe $15 for something on a really good sale. And before you know it you have spent $100.

I am also rejoicing today, however, because I immediately started back on my no spending spree the following day.

Another success today was looking over this past month, seeing how this month will close, and seeing the fruits of all of the self denial I have had over the month. I want to finish strong. To keep this mindset through February as well.

So I sigh, and rejoice, and have begun to consider what my 30-day challenge for February will be. I debating between and exercise and an organizational challenge. Any thoughts?

January:
12 30s And A New Year
Day One The New Quest Begins
It Shouldnt Be This Hard This Soon
Scrimping and Saving
Compulsive Saving
The Final Lap Begins, But February Looms

Compulsive Saving

The following post has been exaggerated to match my emotions rather than to match facts.

Seriously! I was so good today I had to share. It started with having a rotten day at work. Everything went wrong and I worked late. So I left work and went to a store to look at desks for work. Not to look at anything that I should buy. I found several clearance items that I wanted SO much. But I passed them up because I am not spending this month. Why did I decide to do this??? I went to another store…still more things I needed, wanted, and on clearance. WHY? WHY AM I NOT SPENDING MONEY?!?!?! Then I went to another store and thus the saga continued. Finally I headed home. Now it was really late. I was starving. Tired. And I had passed up quite a few purchases. Tons of purchases (this is the point where I added the disclaimer at the beginning of this post, so now I have the freedom to exaggerate even more). Thousands of dollars of savings!!! So I deserved fast food. I wanted fast food. I didn’t want leftover pork. I didn’t want frozen burritos. I didn’t want food I already owned. I wanted fast good. (I reread this post after publishing it and found this typo. But after considering it for a moment I have decided to leave it. I want fast food. But fast food is fast and good. So it fits). And Buffalos has cheap wings on Thursday.

I went straight home.

I don’t think you understand the accomplishment this was for me. In fact, part of why I didn’t go to fast food was so I could blog about this accomplishment. So I demand your respect. Your admiration. Your comments saying that I did something utterly amazing. Thank you in advance.

January:
12 30s And A New Year
Day One The New Quest Begins
It Shouldnt Be This Hard This Soon
Scrimping and Saving
Sighing and Rejoices and Too Many Similarly Sounding Titles
The Final Lap Begins, But February Looms

Scrimping And Saving

Insert cliche phrase regarding things working well here. It is nearly the halfway point of this month and the past week I have been busy but I have stuck to my goals. There have been clearance items passed up and fast food driven by. Checking my budget daily and keeping up on inputting my new purchases in my budget has helped a ton. Reminders of why I am doing what I am doing. In fact I am even looking forward to cleaning out my fridge today and going grocery shopping for the week. It has been nice to remember when I want to make impulse purchases that if I just wait I can get those items at a later date when I need them or when I have more fluid spending money. I am also really excited at the end of this month to look at February’s challenge. But I want to keep up on the current challenge through February. These are habits I am forming!

So this post is simply touching base and updating. I had originally planned to post more tools and useful links but my schedule has not allowed it. Still here however and still saving.

January:
12 30s And A New Year
Day One The New Quest Begins
It Shouldnt Be This Hard This Soon
Compulsive Saving
Sighing and Rejoices and Too Many Similarly Sounding Titles
The Final Lap Begins, But February Looms

It Shouldn’t Be This Hard This Soon

Today is only January 3rd. Three days into this financial fast and I am already struggling. Yesterday I was driving home and I was famished! I had found some cash I had forgotten about and was heading to the bank to deposit it. I actually thought about not depositing the cash and going through a drive through. Three days into this and I already almost threw in the towel for food.

The difficulty with financial goals in an instant society is that we do not see instant results. I have been looking dutifully at my finances for the past three days. Paid a bill, gone grocery shopping, and I have dutifully passed up spending cash on fun items and right now I have nothing to show for it. This is why looking at the finances every day is so important. To remind myself daily why I am doing this. To keep my goals of savings ever before me. To remember that the short term payoff is no where near the long term payoff.

Patience. Only 27 more days to go.

January:
12 30s And A New Year
Day One The New Quest Begins
Scrimping and Saving
Compulsive Saving
Sighing and Rejoices and Too Many Similarly Sounding Titles
The Final Lap Begins, But February Looms

Day One – The New Quest Begins

This is the day we have all been thinking about, anticipating, even planning for a while now. This day, January 1, 2015. I had not originally intended to write every single day this year, nor do I imagine it now, but I find I want to today. On this fresh bright shiny new January 1 it seems so possible for me to write every single day of 2015 and to end this year with thousands of readers who all anticipate each new blog coming out like the next episode of a cliffhanger season end television show audience.

Regardless of reality I do have something to share today. To work towards my monthly goal of a financial fast I will be looking at finances every day. And every day considering, evaluating, and managing my money. Today is simple. Just open your apps, log on to your banking institution sites, look at your accounts. Remind yourself of your goals, to have saved a bunch of money at the end of this month. Figure out what you need to look at every day to remind yourself. For me it is my level app, if I look at that every day I will remember. I see my goal of what to save by seeing what I can spend. I want to save every penny of that if possible.

I have to make a trip to the store today as I have been sick and need some items so I am making a list and attempting to buy only what I can consume this week. No more than that.

Tomorrow we will reevaluate our budgets. Make sure that we aren’t overspending or under budgeting in any areas.

Comment below if you have taken on this challenge and how you are doing so far.

January:
12 30s And A New Year
It Shouldnt Be This Hard This Soon
Scrimping and Saving
Compulsive Saving
Sighing and Rejoices and Too Many Similarly Sounding Titles
The Final Lap Begins, But February Looms

12/30s And A New Year

The new year always creates a buzz and the question of “how will this year be different for me?” This resulting in resolutions which are oft broken or forgotten. I am not here to condemn resolutions. No, I love turning a new leaf and trying new things. So this year I am going to take the challenge of doing 12 30-day challenges. January will begin with a 30 day financial fast. I wanted to begin with an exercise challenge but the lingering effects of a sinus infection are deeming that unlikely to be fulfilled. So finances it is! My goals are each month to start a new 30-day challenge, heavens knows there are plenty out there to be had, and to blog at least once a week about my progress. So there you go, by 12/30 I will have attempted and hopefully accomplished 12 30-day challenges of varying sorts. My minimum goal is to be a better writer at the end. But perhaps I will become better at a few other things as well.

So for a bit more of an explanation of January’s 30-day challenge…a financial fast, meaning I only spend money on the necessities for 30 days. Check out this blog regarding the financial fast.

My first goal for the first week is to simply look at my finances every day. I need to create the habit of thinking about my budget and looking at my balances regularly. I am currently using Ace Budget, and Level as my apps of choice.

Comment below if you are joining me in this challenge!

January:
Day One – The New Quest Begins
It Shouldnt Be This Hard This Soon
Scrimping and Saving
Compulsive Saving
Sighing and Rejoices and Too Many Similarly Sounding Titles
The Final Lap Begins, But February Looms

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