Welcome to our Blog!
First, a little history…Craig and I have been together since we were 17. We were college students together, young married people together, and then a family together. Even with both of us working, we still seemed to be always living paycheck to paycheck.
After our boys were born, we decided to get serious about staying on a budget. We planned out each category and an amount for each. We were diligent about staying within our budget for a few months and then we would get tired of bringing home receipts and entering them in on the computer. Slowly, we would get back to our old ways of just spending and hoping there was enough money in the bank to cover it. Over and over, we repeated this cycle. Staying on a budget is hard! We just couldn’t seem to make it work for us.
About 2 years ago, we both got iPhones. Craig decided to write a little web program that the two of us could use to track our daily spending on our phones. We called it the Budget Tracker. We sat down and figured out how much we had to spend outside of our bills. This became our balance for the Budget Tracker.
The idea was to enter in anything that we spent that wasn’t a set charge. We didn’t enter the cable bill, or the car payment, just things we spent daily. I started entering the amounts as I shopped for groceries, bought the boys new shoes, got gas, and went out to lunch. The balance came down as I entered in the expenses. It was amazing to us to see how those little things added up!
After a while, it became a habit to automatically take out my iPhone and enter in my purchase. Usually I would enter it as soon as I left the store or when I got in my car. This way I didn’t have to worry about bringing the receipt home to enter in the computer.
After using the “Budget Tracker” for a few months, we were amazed at how much easier it was to get from paycheck to paycheck. Being able to see how much money we had left in our balance was a very good incentive not to overspend. If I knew we only had $140.00 left in our Budget Tracker balance and the boys needed basketball shoes and we needed groceries, I would probably wait until the next Budget Tracker cycle to get the new shoes.
We were really stopping to think about what we were spending.