Archives For budget party

I like cheap birthday cake. You know what I’m talking about, you like it too. It’s the large sheet of cake from a place like Costco or  your big box store of choice. The frosting is 1″ thick with shapes of puppy dogs and even thicker icing balloons. It’s served a children’s birthday parties throughout the country. I can’t get enough of the stuff.

I know it’s not healthy, but that cake is one of my joys. Don’t get me wrong I won’t turn down a gourmet red velvet cupcake from a place like Sprinkles. It’s easy and comforting to have a little slice of that cake.

The cheap birthday cake is a bit like having a budget. It’s easy and cheap and gives you a bit of lasting joy. What? Yes, a budget is very simple to do. See how my wife and I have a budget party each month.

Having a budget will give you peace throughout the month as you know where your money is going. Also, knowing that you and your spouse are on the same page is like icing on the cake! So go ahead and eat some cake and while you’re at it, plan that budget party.

Action: Plan a Budget Party (Bonus points for cupcakes)

(Photo by A30_Tsitika)

[This is part of my How to Budget Like a Pro blog Series]

Welcome to the (budget) party!  Have a soda and snacks.  Want to take a whack at the pinata?  Pay no mind to the calculator and excel files on my computer screen. They are just…uh decorations for the party! Here, put your party hat on. If you’re good and participate, we’ll have some cake afterwards.

Yes, it’s that time again.  Time to have a budget party at our house.  We call it a party so my wife shows up.  Meetings are not very fun anyways.  Parties have food, music, and good conversation.  Everyone loves a good party.  My wife doesn’t really enjoy coming to the budget party, but she does like having a budget and having money attached to our goals.

I do try to make it fun and short.  We set a timer, seriously.  I get 20 minutes, but of course I always ask for an extension.  To be fair though, my wife asks a lot of questions, good questions.  It keeps me honest and accountable for doing a good budget and tracking expenses.  I do get lazy sometimes and think to myself, “Why do those budgets always have to equal zero?”  Well they do.

Here is what I do to prepare for our Budget Party (besides ordering the pizza and cake).  The last few we do together as a couple.

  1. Record previous months expenses in excel budget (I get these numbers from Quicken YNAB)
  2. Prepare budget for next month in excel with current and foreseen expenses.
  3. We meet.  Prayer is 1st asking for patience, guidance, and wisdom.
  4. We review the previous month and how much over or under spent in each category.
  5. Present the current month’s budget and she adds birthdays and event expenses from the family calendar. She then changes numbers around  as long as our goals are met and we end up with a zero balanced budget (did you hear that congress?)
  6. Then we agree on the budget and it is binding.  If we need to change something on it, we BOTH must talk about it and agree.
  7. Eat cake or Chunky Monkey Ice Cream.

This the gist of our budget party.  We try to throw our party before or on the first each month.  It helps our relationship and also allows us to reach our goals together.  I hope you plan yours soon!  Enjoy your cake!

Budget Party Video

(Photo by Herkamer Roenski)

[This is part of my How to Budget Like a Pro blog Series]