Thursday, April 7, 2011

Dual Incomes Need Coupons Too

You may have noticed a few small changes to my blog.  When I started it about 6 months ago, "Money Saving Mode" was the first thing that popped in my head, mainly because that's exactly what we were in.  We had just signed up to start taking Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace University and the only thing on our mind was saving money.  We'd used up the bulk of our emergency fund just a few months before to buy me a new car, and no it wasn't really an emergency, but it was a necessity involving my health issues.  If you're interested in reading more about that, you can do so here.The point is our Emergency Fund was running low, we had no budget and we spent pretty much everything that came in.  We have a good income between the two of us, for that matter we'd have a pretty good income without me!  But, we had nothing to show for it.  Yes, our cars were paid for (thanks to the emergency fund) and we had no other debt, but at some point we'd like to be able to retire.  We'd like to go on some nice vacations before then.  We knew we had to make some changes.  "Money Saving Mode" was about sharing our journey into this new land of saving money, in any way possible.

We've done really well in the last 6 months.  We took Financial Peace and during the course of the class we were able to build our Emergency Fund not only back to where it had been, but to where it needed to be.  We are at risk for my husband losing his contract this summer, so we have continued to pile extra cash into the Emergency Fund.  The funny thing is we don't even notice it anymore, we are so used to living within our budget.  My pay goes straight into the EF account.  We live off his, this includes having to pay OOP for all of my meds (luckily we do get reimbursed for most of it, but the 6 weeks we wait could really hurt if we weren't prepared).  Our budget also includes and adequate amount for us to go out and have fun.  Our "Dining & Entertainment" envelope is just that, an envelope.  We put a set amount in there every 2 weeks and that's what we go out to eat on or go to the movies or do other fun things with.  There have only been a couple of times where we've gotten to a point where we were out of fun money and still wanted to do something.  We also each have our own personal envelope that we use for things we need throughout the week, whether it's buying ourselves lunch, buying clothes or just buying something for each other.  We also use a cash envelope for Groceries.  This (as I've posted many times) is probably the hardest area for me to stay within budget and that's mainly because I have cut the Grocery budget many times since we started.  It's now at 1/4 of what we originally started at, and in my opinion two people should be able to live off of $50 a week in groceries, especially with the stockpile we have.  So the over-spending is all on me.

I knew when I started this blog that if I kept it up for 6 months I'd end up changing the name, although I had no idea what I'd change it to.  Growing and changing is part of life, and I want this blog to grow and to help others.  As I've read many other blogs from others sharing their insight on saving money, using coupons, etc the one that struck me is that most of them are Moms reaching out to other Moms. Often, they are mom's who have chosen to stay home with their kids and their couponing (and blogging) is their way of financially supporting their family.  I applaud that!

  There are always tons of deals out there for the Moms, deals for kids.  I don't have kids.  We are DINKs (Dual Income No Kids).  So while I know that a great deal is a great deal for anyone and I hope to help the Mom's who want to save too.  I really wanted to reach out to those who I can relate to the most.  Those of us with two incomes, plenty of income and way too much outgo.  Just because you have dual incomes doesn't mean you don't need to save money, and it certainly doesn't mean you can't use coupons.  Dual Incomes Need Coupons Too!

If you are a dual income family, and especially if you are a child-free family this will be the blog for you.  I won't be posting deals for kids stuff or baby stuff, or mom stuff.  But, I will post deals.  I will post deals that appeal to me (just as I"ve always done) and hopefully in the process they will be deals that will appeal to you.  I'll also post my thoughts on how DINKs can become DINKS with money by using coupons!