about two years ago my Man wanted to take over the money-managing for our family, and you know, i wasn't so happy about it. even though i knew i wasn't doing the very best job saving or budgeting, i felt like if he came in and took over i'd lose some sort of "power".... stupid, huh? we never argued over money and everything got paid (for the most part) and we had more than enough money to blow on whatever we wanted, but because we weren't on the same page as far as saving or investing or spending and without any real goals, it just wasn't working.
so i submitted to his leadership, prayed for God to give me heart to follow and that He'd give my Man much wisdom and discernment to manage the money that God blessed us with.....
and that made all the difference!
in order for me to stay home full-time there was going to have to be sacrifce (i've written about sacrifice/charity here), to be able to be used by the Lord in new capacities and give like never before, it would mean paying off doctors bills quicker, paying off those credit cards and not using them again and downsizing every area of our life.... and being open to my Man's leading and the Lord's each step of the way.
and since we've done (with God's good grace) those things, and we absolutely have taken to the teachings of dave ramsey & the total money makeover, i'd like to say that budgeting and saving money and just sometimes going without has become second-nature by now, but it's not, not even close.... is living below your means easy for your family? or do you even budget?
i spent a lot of time at the beginning of the year cataloging groceries prices from about 5 local grocers,
just so i'd have a more exact idea about what was really a sale when the weekly ads came out; plus i have become addicted to couponing!! seriously, it is a personal mission to save as much as possible with my ad prices and coupons. and this isn't easy, comparing prices, figuring is this coupon really a better deal at this store because they double or at this store with a lower original price, and so on. that reminds me i probably need to catalog prices again, you know, just to make sure things are still about the same and i'm not missin' a deal :)
what makes me really proud is to same that i have cut my bi-weekly grocery budget 110.00 so far! that's an extra 220.00 each month, that for some reason hasn't necessarily ended up in our savings account due to doctor's visits, car repairs, flooded houses, and summer utility bills....
and there's another place i'm trying to cut: energy costs. and this seems about impossible!! but i have grown to love my inherited clothesline that came with our new home!
Cast your burden on the Lord; and He will sustain you.... Psalm 55.22