A truth, a tip, and a find.

The other day on “3 things for mom” I posted a truth, a tip, and a find. Check them out HERE or read them below:

 

TRUTH:

Talking about money with your spouse will make you cry.
Sad, but true.
However… that's not the truth I want to drive home, here. The real truth is…
…There is hardly anything more important in your marriage.
Well, maybe that's being a bit rash. There are plenty of things that are important in your marriage. But talking about finances should be pretty much at the top of your list.
Why is this so important? Not talking about finances with your spouse/family is like never visiting a doctor, ever, in your entire life. If you never visit a doctor, how do you know how you're doing? How do you know if you need improving? How do you know if you've got toxic cancerous cells that are threatening to flip your entire world upside down?
You don't.
If you don't talk about it, you just don't know. That being said, there are easy, “tear-free” ways to go about it.
In my family, for example, we divide up the responsibilities. Think of it like a corporation. In any well-run company, there aren't TWO Presidents, or CEO's, or CFO's, or even HR Directors. Everyone in upper-management is given a specific role based on their talents, expertise, and functional role in the company, with responsibilities that no one else has…but everyone is still working for the same “company”, and striving toward the same common goal.
So why should it be any different in your own family? Why should you BOTH pay the bills? BOTH do the grocery shopping? BOTH be in charge of paying the school fees? Sure, it's possible. But really, is it practical?
In my family, I am a SAHMom I tend to spend the bulk of the money (shocking, I know…), so I get the bulk of the budget. I'm the one the cooks and takes care of the kids during the day, so my financial responsibilities include (to name a few) groceries, school fees, clothes money, and medical bills since I'm usually the one taking the kids to the doctor.
My husband works full-time, so some of his responsibilities are paying all the bills, utilities, and insurances, and he's in charge of date nights and taking care of the cars since I have no idea what the heck I'm doing.
Now, I understand that this will be VERY different from family to family, I'm just illustrating what works for us. The real thing to note here is this: our responsibilities don't cross paths. At all. We added up how much we reasonably need to cover each of our responsibilities in a month (trying to be conservative but realistic) and there you go. For me, that money is automatically drafted to my account each month and I can spend the money however I see fit…as long as I am staying on-budget (which has been much easier since discovering the easiest way EVER to track my budget). My husband trusts me, and I've given him 110% reason to. Same with him – he gets his budget, and as long as his financial  responsibilities are taken care of, I don't really care HOW he spends it.
Well, what happens if your spouse is a big spender and has no interest in being frugal? (I get this question a lot…) Easy.
We get our budget drafted to our accounts, and THAT's the money we have direct access to in the month. It is what it is, it's gone when it's gone. The best part is that we BOTH have natural incentive to be as frugal as possible, so we can each have extra “fun money” leftover at the end of the month to spend on whatever we want!
We fell into some incredibly tough times when the economy tanked. We weren't sure that we would ever get out of it. We started doing this simple “divide and conquer” method, and it has helped us completely turn around our finances in record time (read about that HERE). Not to mention it has saved our marriage a lot of strife! Each month we sit down and look at our finances, but I *rarely* cry any more. No accusations, no guilt, no nervousness. He spends “his” budget, I spend “my” budget, and we see how we're doing as a family, rather that nitpicking every purchase on the register. As long as we stay on-budget that month, it's quick, and nearly painless.
So yes, talking about money sucks. There's just nothing sexy about it. But, if you ask me, it sure beats the consequences of ignoring the hidden cancer in your finances.

TIP:

Did you know you can microwave rock-hard brown sugar and it will turn soft and sprinkly and delicious again? True story.

(I'll spare you the copy/paste, just read about this HERE)

FIND:

I just had my 3rd baby in 3 years. As you can imagine, my body is…well…rebelling. To get back at me it's decided to sprout these super attractive back-fat-love-handle combination things, that make wearing {just about anything} about as fun as rush hour traffic.
This is tough, especially since I REFUSE to succumb to The Mom Jean. The suburbs got me. Elmo got me. The mini van recently got me too. But I will NOT surrender to The Mom Jean.
Being a frugality blogger, being frugal is in my blood. Literally. I get discount immunizations, even. So when I came across these babies, I about jumped for joy…

These skinnies come in different shapes (capri, ankle-length), and colors (dark wash, light wash, grey)…and only cost $7.80 right now at Forever 21.
Not. Even. Kidding.
No, I'm not 21 any more, but yes, they actually fit me. I bought 3 pair and I plan to go back for thirteen a few more. They are comfortable, super stretchy, and have a high enough waist that they cover my oh-so-favorite lower back boobs. Hope you enjoy them as much as I do!

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