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Subject:  Re: nebroots February budget Date:  1/24/2007  4:28 PM
Author:  NewPenny Number:  246047 of 312185


<< I think I'm beginning to see where that 20 comes from...we put it on the card. uggh. >>

Remember. This is a process. You're learning a new skill. Now that you have your first draft of the budget done, the rest is fine-tuning. This takes time, and many rounds to whittle it down to a level you're happy with. Many of us are constantly tinkering and trimming to firm up budgets we keep thinking are "bare bones." I'm not sure this fine-tuning stage ever really ends.

You're learning to change your thought process, and mental changes like this take time. When I first started, I would spend without thinking about it at all. Then, I became aware of what I was doing wrong, but did it any way. Finally, I was able to not just see it, but to redirect my attention and give myself a little pat on the back when I successfully avoided spending outside the budget.

At first, thinking more fugally was hard. It seemed to be against my very nature. It was actually painful. Later, as I practiced cutting back and conserving resources, it got easier. Trimming the electric bill down $5 felt so good, that I looked for ways to make the fruit juice last longer. (I now dilute it to 1/3 strength.) That helped trim the grocery bill. Soon I found myself actually having fun looking for things to cut or cut back on. It became a game. Now I think if it as a hobby that pays me instead of costing me money.

You're at the beginning of this journey, and you're doing a great job.

Keep going -- each step seems small, but it adds up to be huge in the end.

pledged to live and austere year
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