Amazingly, my twitter user is getting followed by several other twitter users that have similar blogs. So I got this message from Sam in Australia (still amazes me how small the world is on the internet).
She writes to me: "moneypennyme: and don't forget how essential it is to stay focused! just don't beat yourself up if you fall off the wagon. it's okay to make mistakes. (Sam Robinson (Australia) via Twitter. )"
You can look at more of her tweets on http://twitter.com/moneypennyme
Her comment to me hit me on the spot. I haven't been 100% frugal and not overspent since I started narrating my story here. When I saw myself spending more that appropiate, or when my daughter or wife made me buy them clothes they would wear only once, or when food gets spoiled because it wasn't stored properly, I feel I let myself down.
Her words about not beating myself up and knowing that it's ok to make mistakes was kind of soothing. I now accept that I could make mistakes and overspend, but that will be the exception rather than the norm. Very different from the way things were in the past.
I have used my emergency fund twice recently. I've felt bad about dipping into it but I was totally out of money and with the credit cards cut up I couldn't take the easy road out and credit card my way to my next paycheck (actually it's a bank transfer but you understand).
I felt like I had failed myself when using my emergency fund. The person that holds my debit card to that account was more understanding about it than myself.
What I did to repair the damage was to repay my fund as much as I could. Also on Monday I signed a new authorization for my day job to transfer 1000 lps to my emergency fund account. That's 200 lps more than before. I did that new authorization just in time as on Tuesday the payroll was processed using my new authorization.
I had used my emergency fund on monday too and had taken out 780 lps for gas, food and my blood pressure medication. With the added 200 lps I was only 580 down on that account. So today I actually walked to the bank and deposited 500 lps on my emergency fund account. In net terms I dipped only 80lps from it. I hope to manage my money better every month.
Without a maid, food and other stuff seems to last longer around the house. We do buy takeout more but usually one family pack lasts for 3 or four meals. For example I bought Popeyes chicken yesterday for lunch. It was 12 pieces of chicken plus a bonus piece for using the Foodcard, plus family-sized mashed potatoes with gravy and salad. We had lunch and dinner yesterday and lunch today with that.
We have a new maid comming friday but this time I'm not letting my wife be solely responsible for setting the limits. This is going to be a work place and I'm not going to accept friends or family of the maid to come "visit" her while we are not here.
I've seen the difference in little things like the "semitas" I buy for breakfast. I used to buy a dozen semitas every morning at 20lps. I had two, my daughters had none and wife probably had other two. That means there were EIGHT left. Yet the next day I had to buy another dozen. Were did the other eight go? my girls could probably eat two in the afternoon, that's six. If the maid was eating two, that leaves four for the next day...but nope, there were just none. That's just an example on something that I know I had some tracking on.
Oh well, thanks Sam for the kind words. Honestly I had forgotten I CAN fall off the wagon AND get back on it again. I was sulking too much on my past mistakes.
Sam's words, although totally free, are priceless.