Friday, March 14, 2014

"Where Does the Money Come From?"

It has to come from somewhere. I'm not talking about the paycheck itself. I'm talking about what we spend. (From here on out, I am talking just about the Sheridan house hold.) Back in the old days, before Fun Dollars, that was Corey's most used phrase, "Where does the Money come from?" meaning, "What part of our family budget is going to cover this expense?"

In our family, we have a general idea of our monthly expenses, and a specific budget for other expenses. For our general purpose spending (Necessities), like gas, utilities, phones, insurance, mortgage, we have a set amount that we know we are going to spend each month. Each week, separate from our necessities budget, we set aside $200.00 for groceries. We also have a monthly deduction that is automatic from our main account that goes into our childrens' savings accounts. When it's all said and done, we spend about $5000.00 a month as a family. Since Corey is the only one working, and we have such high expenses, I feel very strongly about honoring our family budget.

So recently, I asked the question back to Corey, "where does the money come from?" His iPad screen shattered a few weeks ago. Purchasing a new portable electronic device to replace it has been on his list of things to do.  It is also an added cost over what we normally spend. However, at his job, he made his monthly goal for sales in February. This meant that he won a chance to "spin the wheel" at the company meeting. Every month, the salespeople who make their goals put their names into a hat and one person is drawn out. That person gets to spin the prize wheel. In years past, Corey has won such things as $1000 cash and white water rafting in the Grand Canyon. One guy won a trip to Hawaii. (Pretty sweet.) So when Corey spun the wheel, guess what he won? $700 towards a new laptop/iPad!

While searching online for his replacement, he reviewed and checked and double checked many sites and sources. The replacement that he came up with (that fulfills all of his computing needs) cost almost double what the prize would cover. I asked him the question, "where does the money come from?" He answered, "This is two months of car payment that we no longer have to pay." Ok, I can roll with that.

We just paid off our second car (Corey's car). So that frees up about $350 each month. Since we are no longer paying that out, that money that we were used to "not having" because we were paying it can go towards something else. That's where his laptop money came from, still honoring our family budget.

So where am I going with all of this? Some of you might have noticed a discrepancy between this blog and my facebook page. Yesterday, I posted about my trip to Out of Africa Wildlife Park with my two children. Meanwhile, my blog had only $5.00 remaining for the balance this pay cycle. How can that have funded a trip that cost about $65.00? Where did the money come from?

Preschool. I asked Corey at our family meeting last week if we could use Carrick's preschool tuition for the week to fund a trip to Out of Africa over Spring Break. Some of my mom friends were planning a group outing while the kids are out of school. I wanted to honor our family budget, but also, I really wanted to take the kids to Out of Africa when some of their friends (and mine) would be there too. So, we found a way to make that happen, without spending anything extra out of what we are used to spending. The money has to come from somewhere.

Out of Africa (tips towards transportation and lunch)- $5.00

Balance this pay cycle- $0.00

Happy Spending!

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