|Maybe budgeting would be more fun if I put the money in Barbie boxes, instead of glass jars?|
Last year, as part of Year One of Shopping Detox, I tried using Gail Vaz-Oxlade style budget jars. If you aren't familiar with her JARS OF DOOM, it works like this:
You follow her budget spreadsheet (or one of your own) to figure out your budget for things like groceries, bills, entertainment, etc. You then withdraw that amount in cash from the bank and put it in the appropriate jars. So, you spend a month doing a cash-only thing where, if you run out of grocery money, that's it - no more groceries for you.
This is a great theory in paper (and on TV), but in real life, I'm kinda nervous about putting that much cash in jars and leaving the house to go to work every day for a month. Not just that someone might break into my house and steal it, but if you have jars labeled GROCERY MONEY $200 then if someone happens to break in, it would be pretty easy for them to find the money.
So, what I did last spring was to put out jars with budgets written on them. I then made sure to get a receipt from everything I bought, and then I put the receipts into the jars. This post, Day 155: The Day of Reckoning, is when I balanced the books at the end of the month to see how I did.
How did I do? You'll have to read the retro post to find out!