Thank you ALL for your responses about your food budget! It’s always so interesting for me to read about how others budget for different expenses. Plus, I love to learn tips and tricks that you use to help cut costs.
After reading your comments and other blogs, I’ve came to a conclusion about budgets and blogging:
-To each their own. My biggest problem is that I will read a blog or watch a show (Extreme Couponing) and really beat myself up about not being as diligent in couponing. Or diy-ing. Or making my own baby food/cleaning supplies/clothes, etc. But I think what it really boils down to is my time. What do I want to spend my time/energy on? ‘Extreme couponers’ probably spend a good deal of time clipping coupons and researching prices and visiting stores. Right now, I just don’t spend the amount of time necessary to really make myself an extreme couponer. And honestly, I just don’t think I could give up 5 or 6 hours on a Sunday evening clipping like a mad woman as I’ve seen done on the shows.
Charlotte brought up a good point: stop beating ourselves up! It’s so easy to think that when someone spends way less than you on groceries that you are doing something wrong. But in reality, you may just choose to eat out more or buy more food. But the person you are comparing yourself to may spend way more than you on entertainment. Or bills. Or shopping. To each their own!
Sometimes, I think the problem with blogging is that it gives us unrealistic expectations. I’m so guilty of this. I’ll see a blog where someone does incredible home improvement projects and their home looks like a million bucks and is so well kept. Then I’ll get to looking at our little old house and realize that it looks like a train just derailed in the living room. I’ll get down on myself about not keeping a cute and tidy house. But then I have to realize I’m looking at a one-sided picture. Home improvement/diy is what they choose to focus on. The same goes for couponing blogs. And photography blogs. And fashion blogs. This is what they choose to focus on. You (usually) only see that side of their life. And it usually looks wonderful, leaving me feeling like I waste money, take pictures like a 5 year old, and dress like Yoda.
I didn’t mean to get off on a tangent about blogging. I guess, though, that this is really helping me define and refine what I want for my blog. I want my blog to be about my life. I’m not a super mom, fancy wife, extreme couponer, chef extraordinaire, perfect Christian, diy-superstar, or fashionista. I’m a new wife and a new mom who buys most of her clothes at Target. I routinely burn gravy and ask for God’s forgiveness far too often. I enjoy learning new ways to save money for my family. Sometimes I like to make things for my house. Sometimes I like to try new recipes. Sometimes I like to clean obsessively. And then other times I like to write about my messy house. I like sharing ideas with ya’ll. And getting ideas from ya’ll. And I like dessert.
My hope is that when you leave my blog you think “oh my gosh, I’m not alone!” (or “that girl needs help!”). I love thematic blogs. I love blogs that focus on topics, whether its cooking, decorating, diy-ing, marriage, or parenting. I’ve got tons bookmarked on my computer. I get so much inspiration from these blogs. I think we all do. I think sometimes, for me, I just get too wrapped up in them and leave feeling inadequate. It’s important to remember we are not perfect. We all have strengths and weaknesses. My hope is that we can learn from each other. I don’t want you to feel bad about your spending habits. I was just hoping we could learn from one another. And maybe help a girl out, ya know?
With all that being said, I really enjoyed reading the comments about your budgets. Thanks so much for your suggestions! I was inspired! I feel like this is something I want to expand on. Maybe weekly budget posts? Maybe guest bloggers? Maybe couponing tips from guest bloggers? Maybe budget breakdowns?
In the meantime: