We made it through the expensive month of December and still made some progress towards our savings goals. H
How did we do that?
We set aside money for Christmas all year long.
This means the holidays don’t break our budget and come January we’re not scared to look at our bills. All of our Christmas giving was paid for even before it went under the tree.
One thing we did realize is that we either need to increase our food budget in December or save more for our Christmas budget. Bringing dishes to pass to several parties does increase the food costs for the month. Unfortunately, this surprise prevented us from sticking with our new food budget. We ended up spending $800 on food for the month, which is still less than our average every month for 2016, but still not good.
We are really working on bringing that food budget down and we’ll keep you updated as we continue to work through that and try to find an easy, effective way to menu plan that cuts back on my hatred for doing it.
If you are not starting to save for Christmas 2017 now, you NEED to.
Check out my post from last year about this.
In addition to increasing the Christmas budget to allot for food for dishes to pass we are also adding a line for a new tree. We know we need a new tree next year so we are going to set aside money in advance so it doesn’t throw off our Christmas budget or our November budget.
In December we did not have any extra money to put towards our debt snowball. We only made the minimum monthly payment, but we were able to put $1,400 towards our Disney vacation that is coming up this July. We wanted to be sure to front load the savings for that vacation so we could pay it all off several months before going.
Our mini-money goal for January is to get our food spending as close as possible to $650 and put more money away towards our Disney vacation.
So here’s the update for December:
Income report from December
Extra from December paychecks $1,392
Money from Garage Sale and Varage Sale $ 8
Total extra income $1,400
This $1,400 was put towards our Disney vacation. Since we did make the minimum monthly payment and a portion of that goes towards principle, we were able to reduce the debt a little bit this month.
Current outstanding student loan debt $34,756