Category Archives: money honey

Money Honey #2

I’m barely to Connecticut Avenue, and my goal of monthly money meetings with Hubby is already proving a challenge. I doubt you noticed, but we missed our “scheduled” February meeting. It’s not that we didn’t try, but you know how life gets in the way, and the springlike winter weather hasn’t helped (but our yard is looking darn good!).

The good news is that since starting this blog, we have been chatting more regularly about finances. Nothing formal, but at least we’re keeping tabs on our priorities and communicating more than usual.

We also had a bit of a breakthrough. This past Flex Friday we went to sign our loan documents for the Clean Energy Works program. The program is financed through Shore Bank Pacific, a unique local and “sustainable” bank. (I’ll share more about them tomorrow) Long discussion made short, we agreed that this is the right bank for us. Despite the fact that it’s going to take us even more effort to merge our money , it feels right to switch to a bank with environmental and social values. Believe me, switching all our accounts  is not really something I want to spend my “free” time doing, but feel like it will be worth the time investment both personally and societally.

Otherwise, we’re still getting the kinks worked out with our new budget template and I’m hoping to unveil it once my sis gets back from the Congo. Thanks for your patience!

Sustainable Family Finances 
The story of a family creating an abundant and sustainable life.

Money Honey – Talk #1

I’d like to say that we functioned like a symbiotic organism at our first monthly “Money Honey” meeting, instead I’ll have to admit that we both had to muster energy after a long day of household chores. Plus, Girly woke up in the middle of our session, and needed help getting back to sleep. Alas, by the time I returned to talk, Hubby was engrossed in a Coldcase drama and seemed to think that he could look at the laptop while horizontal. I pleaded for his attention with some chocolate pudding pie…then we were in action.

Despite the initial setbacks, we managed to review the new-and-improved family budget and we both agree that it is much for manageable and easier to tell if you’re over budget and where. It is even programmed to switch to red text when you spend too much! As it happened, we overspent in three areas:

  • Splurged on Hubby’s 40th b-day
  • Family Forrester needed routine maintenance that wasn’t budgeted
  • Needed our favorite handyman for house repairs…again

The good news is that we were tired of overeating during the holidays, and have been cooking more at home this month, and eating summer dishes that I froze myself, like corn crab chowder. We’ve also been a bit of homebodies lately and haven’t even used a half tank of gas this month. Instead, we’ve enjoyed some family walks around the neighborhood and have planned any car errands together in one trip.

It’s going to take me a few months of working with the new template and merging our accounts before we are likely to have any real budgetary revelations, but I already feel some simple peace knowing that we’ve discussed our budget face to face. I’ve also learned an important lesson: make something sweet before each Money Honey meeting

(I borrowed the template from my sis at DINKs Finance , and I promise to post my own family-friendly template soon).


Sustainable Family Finances 
The story of a family creating an abundant and sustainable life.

Goal #2 – Let’s Talk Money Honey

It’s maybe not what Hubby has in mind for a so-called date night, and certainly not the sexiest pick up line I’ve used, but talking money as a couple needs to become a priority. As everyone knows, money can be a primary source of a couple’s discontent…sometimes even leading to the dreaded “D” word. So, it’s definitely time well invested to have frequent heart-to-hearts with your significant other.

Thankfully, hubby and I have pretty similar notions about what we should and should not spend money on, and have only ever had minor quibbles over cash. While I would probably have to confess to a financial fib or two, at least we are not committing “Financial Infidelity” – there’s a bit scary video from the Wall Street Journal that my sister just posted on her DINKs Finance blog.

Our greatest downfall is that we both have a tendency to want the best for our family: all organics, no cheap fast food, nice clothes…the list seems to go on and on. We’re also generous, and would give to more causes in a heartbeat if we could afford it. Yet, there’s only so much money to go around, and often we are faced with decisions about what we want/need for our family.

So, in theory it’ll be pretty simple. My first step is penciling in time on our calendar, and I’m going to choose the third Sunday of the month. That will give me enough time to pay bills and update the budget during the first half of the month. Ideally we would meet while the kids are napping, but as parents we know how little control we actually have over these small beings. So, we’ll probably have to wing it half the time, but the important thing is that we dedicate time regularly to discussing our family’s financial matters.

I’ll also dedicate some time to reflecting on these meetings, and sharing with you any insights that might be gleaned from these monthly pow-wows.

Sustainable Family Finances 
The story of a family creating an abundant and sustainable life.