Ok, I can't find the link anymore, but I could send you a blank worksheet that you could build for your household. I could even just send you ours, less the numbers of course, so you could tailor it to your needs. It's worked very well for us - it accounts for income, expenses, and savings.
hahaha Brad usually always knows what his gift is - b/c he asks for one really expensive thing each year. This year, it's a $270 brushless motor cordless drill... he knows that's what he's getting... he's ordering it today, I believe, but I will wrap it up and he won't get it til Christmas Eve when we open gifts with the kids.
I don't mind that Hulky guesses his gifts, I like giving gifts and he has more coming . I'm also getting him bunny slippers! Those will be a complete surprise. I don't like waiting to give gifts and that's why he got the pizza stone a couple of months early (though couldn't use it till we got the peel anyway).
I don't think the depression is a seasonal thing. I'm taking 10,000 IU of Vitamin D daily and don't feel like my mood changes with the weather, so it's not Vit D anyway. I don't know what else I could chalk it up to in relation to the seasons. I think it's just being under-fed for too long.
Re: money, I don't think I said that he expects our money to be separate, but that is not the case if I did. He expects us to have joint finances and that is what I want too. We are just struggling with how to balance that, as I'm sure most people do when they start to combine finances. Right now, I have my personal account, he has a personal account (which he intends on retiring because he hates the bank), and we have a joint account at the credit union, which he is using as his primary (which is why it feels weird to use that money, I don't put anything into that account right now). I kept a spreadsheet of my income & expenses for a while last year and it drove me insane, though it did give me a sense of how much we spend on groceries etc. If it comes down to it, I'll suggest we both do it to see where we're spending excessively, but overall I think things are fine. The only thing I've had to use the joint account for is groceries and for now, that's all I want to use it for. We'll figure it out.
I do use mint.com (I definitely recommend it) because it's free and I can load up my student loans. All but one, which doesn't work with the site for some reason. If you have credit cards or loans or regular payments of any kind, you can set them up on the site for reminders, a collected area to see the balances, and to see how much you spend in various categories each month. I set myself some regular budgets for things that never change so I can easily see how much money I need, minimum, per month. Plus a savings goal for the honeymoon (I just set that as a end date, it's really just for regular savings), in which I try to set aside $200/mo.
finances are hard to figure out when you first get started - and especially when you're coming into the marriage with uneven incomes and/or expenses. A good sit down and discuss will probably work it out easy enough. I think what works best is to have a joint account for life's necessities - which would include your supplements, food, household bills, car expenses, medical bills and joint vacations. Non-essentials should come out of your own "allowances" - be that a part of the joint account or out of separate accounts. Marriage is never 50/50 when it comes to finances. Its a partnership that is defined by what is comfortable by the 2 parties involved.
I work p/t and contribute about 1/4 of our overall income - but if I need something out of the ordinary (like the breath test thing) I ask hubby is he's okay with spending x$ on that item. He doesn't always do the same - but I don't mind too much. On the flip side of the income -- I do all the housework, 99% of the cooking and yardwork, all the shopping and bookkeeping. Its a balance. He doesn't mind my not contributing more financially because it means he doesn't have to worry about all the things that I do in exchange. Food is food.......... I need what I need - he gets what he wants - no one complains.
You have to find the right place where it all merges - where you stop being 2 separate units making a life together - and become a single unit working from 2 angles.
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Wise words, Tomi . It's been tough because of Hulky's job earlier this year and then him trying to get back into school mode. He has a lot more time at home than I do, but still needs to do his school work. He is trying to find a balance and I am trying not to push too hard. When he graduates, we'll probably both be working, so that will be another change.
To save time, Iíve started writing my journal posts in a Word document, then copying & pasting onto MDA after editing.
Sleep Ė I think the 5-HTP may be too effective. Iím sleeping heavily, but waking up tired. This weekend, Iíll try going without it. Iím also having very vivid dreams, which I usually associate with too much serotonin (happened when my 5-HTP dose was too high & when I was on SSRIís). Last night, I had a dream with Heath Ledger in it. I stopped myself from kissing him because my conscious brain knew I am married, though my dream persona wasnít me! What a shame, dream smooches & sexy shenanigans are so fun.
I have therapy today and forgot to bring a copay AGAIN. That means I either need to remember to mail in $40 between now and the 16th, or bring in $60 to the couples appointment. Sigh. I hate my brain.
We didnít go to kickboxing last night. Hulky said itís a family affair, so if I donít want to go, heís not going either. I feel a little guilty about that, but heís not guilt-tripping me, itís just me taking on the responsibility of his wellbeing. I donít want to do that, itís too stressful. Something to talk about at therapy today.
Question Ė Anyone need/want Maca root? I have two bottles of the supplement. One is definitely closed, the other may be missing a few capsules. I can get the details of dosage & brand if anyone is interested, just PM me. Shipping will be cheap, so this is at no cost to you, I just want to clear some cupboard space without letting them go to waste. I stopped taking them because they made my heart race and made me jittery, but some people take them for hormone regulation.
I really need to get more Vitex, but since Iím down to $40.05 in my checking account, Iím waiting until the weekend. Tonight, I hope we can go get the Christmas tree. Tomorrow night, weíre going to see a friendís cover band play (not really looking forward to it, but Iím tired of being limited by my mood/energy levels). Saturday, I should be able to get the car inspected again. Maybe we can work on the Mustang.
The spreadsheet I use isn't a spending tracking sheet - those drive me nuts too. This is a "PLAN" for what to do with the money. For instance, on ours, I have how much I plan to spend on groceries each week (currently $200), gas (currently $170), etc, etc, etc, how much I plan to put into savings, etc. It's not a spending log at all, but I guess once the bills have been paid it serves as a spending log, in a sense. It makes me feel more comfortable and feel like I have a better handle on the money if I know where it's going prior to it going, and if it's on paper so I don't forget anything. It works as a checklist that way too. Car payment made? Check (I shade the block when I've made the payment to indicate it's done. A completely gray spreadsheet indicates I've paid all of our bills for that month). It works very well for me - might seem tedious to some, but it's something I picked up when I was reading Dave Ramsey's books and I haven't felt comfortable with doing anything else. Dave Ramsey said to give each dollar a job and write that job down - that's what my spreadsheet does - it gives each dollar a purpose, leaving a zero balance in our checking account the way he prescribes (any extra dollars are supposed to be given to debt repayment).
Brad and I fell into a battle rhythm with our finances pretty easily when we combined them, so I'm not experienced with the struggles you feel... I can't imagine the concerns, but sympathize all the same. Good luck!