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Die, sloth, die!

Brent has seized on the exercises in Your Money or Your Life with glee. What could be more fun than to play with spreadsheets and charts? Tracking things! Analysis! So exciting!

My motivation is a lot less about the process and a lot more about the eventual goal. I have to find little somethings to entertain me as we scroll through the gazillion expenditures we have made this year. (Thankfully, it won’t take so long when it’s only a month at a time and we’re used to it.)

One of those somethings came when we were looking at how much money we spend eating out. The short answer is: too much. The longer answer is that we have two reasons for eating out: gluttony and sloth. We have now recategorized our meals out based on this. Gluttony is a problem, but we both enjoy eating out and for the most part we get bang for our buck when we go out to dinner. Sloth is another problem entirely.

Sloth is what makes me get home from work and say the magic word: LaVal’s. Sloth drives through for fast food instead of making breakfast at home. Sloth is the enemy. And, no, money-sucking sloths are not endangered; they are an invasive nonnative species that need to be eradicated from my habitat.

I’m sure there are other deadly sins lurking in my expenses, but I think I’ll be able to find them (Hi, Vanity! Hi, Pride!) more effectively once I’ve evicted the sloth.

Comments

( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
lonesomepolecat
Mar. 24th, 2010 04:16 pm (UTC)
I've found tracking all my expenses via Quicken to be _extremely_ useful. The graph overviews are really nice for getting that big picture view of what's going on in your finances.

My marker for when I do them is that I keep all my reciepts in my wallet and when it becomes too bulky I sit down and enter them all.
(Anonymous)
Mar. 25th, 2010 04:09 pm (UTC)
Yeah, we've been tracking stuff all along. But we are breaking things out a little differently using Mint to figure out where the waste is. Brent is the real expert at the tracking part; I'm pretty good at the being cheap part from experience. And you made me feel guilty because I do have a whole wallet full of receipts to enter. Sigh.

;) js
happy_potterer
Mar. 25th, 2010 09:14 pm (UTC)
Wow, I'm so impressed! I've started on it too but quail at the tracking, and am stalling on lots of stuff with the excuse that I don't have access to most of my papers 'til I get back to SF. However, I already know I spend too much money eating out, and we do as a family too. Funny, since we love to cook. I have a plan for cutting way back on work lunches out--what I don't know, without my files, is how much that's likely to save. I'm guessing a couple hundred dollars a month.

Anyway, a friend who's featured on the FI site, Jane Dwinell, shared something she'd written (a book manuscript on the topic, actually--cool!) in which she said if you're too tired to cook dinner, it's okay to have popcorn for dinner instead of ordering takeout Chinese. I love popcorn so this made me laugh--and I'll do it too.
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )

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