I'd like to say we learned lots of things by being really strict with our spending habits these last two months.
But we epically failed.
We absolutely dominated the first 3 weeks. But then it was a quick deterioration after that. Our jobs (=Cale's job) all of a sudden got out of control stressful which in turn made life stressful, the weather heated up, and things that needed to have money spent on came up (oven doors, car insurance, a broken phone, etc.).
I really want to go back and re-do this and have more will power so we can save a good chunk of money. We were reading a news story about budgeting that described us perfectly. It said something to the effect that just because you keep track of where every penny is going does not under any circumstance mean you're actually sticking to a budget.
Where Cale and I really get caught up is in the fact that we're paying all of our bills, paying [lots] extra on each our mortgage and student loans, not charging anything on our credit cards, and saving money. Therefore we let ourselves believe we're doing a great job. When we actually sit down and look at our finances hurts to see how much we could have saved if we cut out out to eat stops and Starbucks (I take full responsibility for that). I think we'll aim to try this again in September and hopefully do a much better job.
P.S. I realize that July and August are in-between this but we have week long vacations planned in both months and some birthdays... and since we like to celebrate it would be an inaccurate depiction of really cutting out all unnecessary purchases.
On a more positive note, we found that we were able to stick to a under fifty dollar a week grocery budget with very few exceptions. I will try to be diligent in at least this aspect of the budget (with my insane Starbucks addiction it's the least I can do to help our budget). I'll try to keep posting progress and lists of what we bought with menus.
You don't care? No surprise there, but it really helps me with menu ideas to look back and see how many different things I created with chicken breasts.
Now I have to go to bed.. I'm working 10 days in a row so I can get off for a family wedding.... just have to make it to Thursday. Wish me luck!