Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Tuesday, scramblimg,scrambling

     Just wanted you all to know that I am the most disorganized financial person you will ever meet.  Yes I know I can design and sew 5 dresses in a day and teach and clean and, and, and.....

     But I cannot keep a check book balanced.  I intuitively think I have more money than I have.  I overspend and assume the money is there.  I really do not budget for basic living expenses.  When I am busy and I am always busy, I shut down mentally on bills and just hope they get paid. They don't.

     Now I have been dilly dallying since we got back from Gettysburg on the 9th of October on the accounts.  I did not balance either checking account before I left.  I did get home and pay the house payment so it is not late and then run like a raped ape until I cannot ignore it any more. I make plans to look at the budget then I don't get it done, put it off and I assume I have money.  Well I don't. Not only that, I over pay bills so I can get something paid off and I transfer huge sums of money like $1250.00 (now that may not be huge to sum of you but it is to me) to a different account and then I don't write it down in the register and I am off by that amount when I get my statement.  So I spend hours trying to prove that the bank took my money and it was me paying off a bill so I could feel good about myself.  This was yesterday.

     I got no sewing done.  I emptied my emergency fund(there is $127.00 left) to get enough money into my checking to keep from overdrawing on the bills I had just mailed.  Oh yes please stack up all the bills and mail them before you have balanced your accounts.  You know it will be close, but intuitively you have the money.  I just don't know what to do with myself.  Sluggy come slap me!  Someone help!

     I have $82.09 in the studio checking.
     I have -74.12 in personal checking( insurance checks won't clear until the 29th so I am not overdrawn)

     No amount of scrimping and saving change and cooking in bulk is going to help me if I don't know how much money I have and just assume.  This has been getting worse and worse since the  sewer collapse.  Like an alcoholic I am off the wagon and I am using that crisis as an excuse to let old habit creep up.  What these old habits lead to is money down the drain!

     Let's just assume right now that I have no money.  I have Credit Card debt again, I have a broken down car in the driveway(daughters) and I did not make any progress on my CC debt plan this month.  Shame on me!  How did this happen?

    I started using Credit cards again in the summer.  I needed to get paint and supplies for the remodel after the sewer mess.  Justified.  I also had the fiasco with the downtown (studio) resurfacing and sewer problem.  Justified. Hubby lost his car pooling partner just as gas was climbing.  With out a partner his gas is over $450.00 a month.  He used the Credit card as he was out on fire and was not coming home.  Justified.  But he kept using it.  Did I know?  Well not really but I should have.  He has always come to me for gas cash or told me he wrote a check.  But this was easier.  I have almost $2000.00 worth of gas charges.  No wonder I can't pay off the bills.

    So if you are still with me.  Please don't hate me. Help me form a plan.  I thought maybe if I start by just posting my two account balances first thing on the blog, it would force me to pull my head out.  I cannot write a post without my balances being posted.  Just having knowledge of where I am will help a lot.  I am always trying to play catch up.  Scramble, catch up. Scramble, catch up.

     I will be able to get most of the money back in the emergency fund before the end of the month.  Just disgusted with myself.  I called and had a long talk with my Sissie.  She says I am trying to get out too fast.  I can pay all my bills on time.  I haven't gotten any late notices.  I will be fine, but I feel like a failure because I know I am responsible and no one is going to save me but me,  So why the sabotage?

Do you ever sabotage yourself?  If so how?  What did you do to try and stop the behavior?

I have to get busy and sew, got everything done on my list yesterday but sewing!

Have a great and productive day!



  1. Yikes. First take a deep breath and relax. Can your hubby manage the money? I am like you--I think in my mind of round numbers and there always seems to be more money than there really is. Then, when we were paying off debt, I would throw EVERY PENNY at the debt snowball then wonder why I would backslide because we didn't have any money to buy food! Hubby took over the bill paying and he seems better at it than me (this is the guy who dutifully records our electricity usage each day). Now he keeps track of the money and the bills that have been paid/need to be paid and I report to him when I pay a bill and he writes it down. So my advice: follow Dave Ramsey. First, balance your bank accounts and make sure non are over drawn. Then pay all of your bills. Stop using credit cards. Go cash only for a while. Next, build up your emergency fund again. Last, add extra to your smallest debt until it is paid off.

  2. There's no way we'd ever hate you! But like with some answers, the simplest solution is the best. It seems you have a lot of amounts due at very different times, skipping weeks or months. That definitely makes it a lot more challenging. I am not sure how you budget (if you do it weekly, monthly, as needed), but perhaps you should try getting into an schedule.

    I think the sabotaging is also something I've observed in my dad... like you said, budgeting and paying bills sucks and you'd rather just ignore it until you totally have to deal with it. Why stress now when you will stress later anyway? I say, take the stress away from it. Knowledge is power, and knowing that X is your combined income, Y is how much your bills and other unchanging, monthly dues are, and then Z is an estimate of all of those changing amounts may give you a better idea, and better control. More control = less stress, hopefully. So get a night when you're not running around like a chicken with no head doing more than most humans are able to do in a week, and go back to the basics. Write your income and dates. Write your bills, and their dates. Estimate everything else. Knowing that you only have $500 in your gas budget will give you an eagle view of how you stand, and when you may be close to overdoing it. Don't spend without knowing what your allowance is.

  3. I too sabatoge myself, I always think I will have more money than I do! If I have money coming in I spend too much of it in my head, so when the time comes to pay bills, the numbers don't add up. I have 3 accounts that I am constantly juggling back and forth and I too want to stop. Not sure how I'm going to do that yet...

  4. I agree you are making a big deal and over analyzing this. Do what the others suggest and you will be fine.


  5. Take a big breath. Regroup. Take another big breath. Now sit down and slowly figure it out. You need to remember you have the power to do this. We have all been in worse shape and you are strong.

    Own the debt..dont let it own you. We are all with you and behind you

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  6. You can fix this. What about this - do you have a list with when you get paid & which bill is due each pay day?

    For example, on the 15th, you get $1500 from the studio.

    You owe on or before the 15th:
    Utilities -

    Add them up. If they total less than $1500, great. If not, you need to create a reserve for that pay grouping each month. In my world, we have almost all of our bills due on or near the 15th. Which means, I save a bunch of the paycheck I receive on the 30th, to cover for the following 15th bill group. Does that make sense? If I spent all of my 30th paycheck money and/or used it to pay down debt, I would be screwed when the 15th paycheck couldn't cover all ofthe bills due that day.

  7. Oh Kim, I so get it. I agree with Judy, deep breath sweetie. Pay the minimum on all bills and build up some cash in your checking account. Slow and steady wins the race....(you are the tortoise not the hare...)

    YOU CAN DO THIS!!! I'll be right here cheering you on!!

  8. Start with a list....who, how much, when it is due.

    You aren't going to resolve this overnight, so throwing tons of money at it, and then being short later isn't the solution. You need to accept that sometimes a payment will be $50, not $500.

    I balance my checkbook every day. Can you make it part of your routine (maybe not everyday, but 2x a week)? The longer you go without looking at it, the greater the chance that something big will be missed. For me, if I do it daily, it takes 3 minutes. Over and done.

    Hang in there girlie...you know I get it!

  9. I was having flashbacks reading this! When my DH was self employed and I was always trying to finagle 2 accounts and make the money last. It was a never ending spiral and the more stressed I got about it all the more I just buried my head and tried to ignore it. Ugh!

    Is a big part of the issue that your income varies from month to month? That was SO hard for me to manage. I just couldn't get a grip on it - ever. Here's my suggestions: First, I'd say stop overypaying bills and stop trying to pay extra on any of your bills UNTIL you build up a nice good sized reserve. Play a mind game with yourself and tell yourself that the money you are putting in the reserve is really money you are allocating to paying extra on the bills - it's just not really going to them... yet....

    I too got into the never ending trap of constantly having to re-borrow or charge up again what I had just paid off because the next month income was lower than I budgeted and expenses ended up higher. Just keep working on this reserve with your extra payments until it is large enough to totally cover you for a month. Then you can start paying extra on bills and credit cards.

    Just take a deep breath and try to relax. At this point as long as you are paying the minimum and are able to put the extra aside you will get to the point you can start paying them down in bigger payments.

  10. I'm not pf expert and I make a lot of mistakes so I won't be the biggest supporter here but just wanted to let you know that I'm with you. My thoughts are with you. And I keep my fingers crossed for you :)