Our 2014 Financial Forecast
One of my favorite parts of our annual family meeting (which we had about a month ago) is when we forecast our big financial expenditures for the upcoming year. I thought it might be helpful for you to see what sorts of things we talk about and plan for.
We start by dreaming and brainstorming. Eric and I each get to bring up things we’d like to buy in the coming year. Sometimes we discuss things and decide they need to wait a couple years before we can get them. Either way, it’s a great time to have a rational discussion.
Then we put dollar amounts next to the line items. It’s kind of scary to see how much we have to save for them each month. But, we cut other things out (lunches out during the week, cable) so that we can make these other things happen. With hopes I’m not over-sharing, here’s what we’re saving for this year.
- Weddings – $100
- Christmas gifts – $700
- Birthday and other gifts – $700
- Christmas cards – $200
- Rooney’s 2nd birthday party – $300 (includes party decor, food and gifts)
- Weekend to Remember marriage conference – $250
- Work-related lunches throughout the year – $100
- Iowa State Fair – $100
- Eric's 30th birthday celebration/trip in March – $500 (mostly saved for already)
- Okoboji trip in June – $300
- Car repairs (tires) – $600
- Lawn care – $100
- Car replacement – $1,200
- Costco membership – $110
- Grass-fed beef from Wallace Farms – $720
I must note that this year we've dreamed bigger than our budget. The grand total of these things is $5,564! So, not all of these things may be able to happen this year. We were confused as to why (and feeling so broke!), and then Eric realized that in the past year we started saving more for retirement and Rooney's college, so that's about $300/month less than we had last January. Eric usually gets a bonus in January, so we're hoping that will come through and that we can put money aside for some of these things. We're also hoping for a tax return!
What are you saving for this year?