may spending freeze

if you've been around these parts for long, you know that luke & i are very intentional about budgeting (find out more on how we budget here). we have monthly budget meetings & plan ahead so that we're spending below our means each month. 

of course, despite our very best efforts, sometimes incidentals & unexpected expenses come up, leaving us spending much more than we planned. over the last two months, we have repaired two vehicles & purchased a large amount of farm supplies for the summer months. 

in an effort to build back up our savings, we have adjusted our monthly budget for may & agreed to a spending freeze.

what does a spending freeze look like for our family?

during the month of may, we are only going to spend money in the absolutely necessary categories of our budget. 

our may budget does include:
- bills
- food
- date night (yes it's a necessity for our sanity, but we've reduced this category by 25%)
- individual allowance
- medicine
- animal care
- personal care (haircuts, etc.)

our may budget does not include:
- clothing
- house projects
- home supplies
- gifts
- anything "extra," including non-budgeted wants

our biggest challenges:
- using up our storage food from the freezer
- using only what we have to create gifts for friends & family (including mother's day!)
- limiting our date nights to only inexpensive dates
- not purchasing home improvement supplies including plants, diy project supplies & general pretties
- finding contentment in what we already own, use & have

i've got a ton of blog post ideas i plan to share with you during the month of may from healthy meals on a limited budget & gifting with what you already own. 

if you're craving a spending freeze, join my family during the month of may! i plan to update our journey here in full detail, but join me on instagram @nataliecreates & use the hashtag #mayspendingfreeze!

do you have ideas for saving money & spending less? please share!


Katie @ Stress and Stars said...

Oh, I need so badly to join you in this. We are dealing with the fact that I got a new job that pays much more, which is good, but it pays out monthly, which makes budgeting quite a bit more challenging. It's hard to remember how long I have to wait for the next paycheck when you see the bank account the day after payday!

Maybe I should link up to your instagram with this. Hm.

PeachSponge said...

This is a great idea!

Chelsey Tappan said...

I'm so on board for this! What a great idea!!! :)

Heather said...

Hi Natalie, how encouraging! God has been providing in such wonderful ways for both of our families. . .

Just yesterday we realized that our "small" kitchen project now needs to be a complete kitchen overhaul. And this morning, God provided a set of kitchen cabinets from a local church that was remodeling. . .cost: free!

Feeling SO thankful. :)

Traci said...

Looking forward to following along!

Unknown said...

Hi Natalie,
I'm a first ime visitor to your blog and love your sentiments. I've had to live super tight the last few years due to a failed business and the debts that need to be paid as well as live, raising a family of 3 kids nd my husband having a career change. I've worked full time through the whole thing and this year were hoping to finish up the grinding part of our lives, all going to plan.
One thing I've learnt is to pray, pray, pray. God has seen us through some of the hardest days I've ever lived.
Ideas wise I would say make the most of your freezer. Freeze anything left over, that includes eggs, icing, left over meat and veges freeze your meat separately and when you have a couple of different things up there you're good to go with making a meal from what you've got in your freezer and pantry.
The other I tend to do is shop late for things like meat which often have crazy reduced prices on them. I once got a rolled roast of pork for $1.00. The special was so good it wouldn't scan at the checkout. :).
I've loads of other ideas too, I'm nearly a professional at living this way now and would be,happy to share.

Beth said...

Great post!
Didn't you share somewhere about your actual monthly budgeting meeting? I've searched your blog every which way I can think of, but I cannot find it.
Can you please post the link, pretty please? :)


natalie said...

Beth, here ya go: :)

Unknown said...

Campfires! I love snuggling under a blanket and watching the flames.

We also try to spice up movie night by each picking a few titles and drawing them out of a hat. We use our air mattress and make a palate in the living room. We only do that on special occasions to make it more fun. :)

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