The estimated median household income for our county is 2.5 times what husband's income is, if you include his housing allowance. If you count only our taxable income, that number jumps to 4.5. We have to budget. We don't have another choice, except financial ruin. We were well on our way down that path before husband was able to find a new job. In the past I have been too overwhelmed and discouraged by what seemed insurmountable to even be involved in making a budget. I was difficult. Last year I refused to let husband put me on a cash budget, fearing that I would spend the cash unwisely, or lose it, or be robbed. It sounds silly I'm sure, but I was genuinely fearful and I thought I was doing just fine.
Through God's grace we have been able to stay on track none the less, like a lonely ant slowly eating the proverbial elephant. We have been paying down our overall debt load, which is encouraging. Towards the end of 2011 I had a significant change of heart and finally felt the whole weight of my own contributions to our financial situation. Over course of a few months husbands explained our situation, our budget, his plan, and his goals. I have been able to lend some organization to his methods and we set some goals together. After reading about the envelope system on several blogs I follow, I asked to be put on a cash budget. Sadly, because of my overspending, we couldn't do that until our tax refund came in. The very day Husband's W-2 came in the mail I sat down and filed our return.
Finally, our direct deposit payment arrive! This morning, while Husband made a very large online payment, I wrapped our cursed credit cards in several plastic bags and weighted them down with a stone and froze them in a jar of water. I think it would have been more fun to wizz them up in my handy dandy food processor, but my more rational, financially savvy spouse told me that wasn't a good idea. I'm still not so sure about it. But I guess those cards can't hurt me where they are. The jar is labeled simply "debt". I don't want to thaw that out!
The rest of my life starts today.