Archive for February 8, 2009

Keeping Track of Every Purchase

Last month I tried to keep track of all of my credit card purchases. I’ve made vain attempts at this before, but last month I was fairly diligent in my tracking. In total I spent roughly $900 from January 1st to January 31st.

The breakdown is as follows:

  • Gas & Auto Expenses — $67.33
  • Groceries — $312.87
  • Medical — $219.00
  • Restaurants/Eating Out — $156.68
  • Discretionary Expenses (a random hodgepodge of items) — $134.03

My medical expenses typically hover around the $200 mark, so this month’s expenses were about average. Unfortunately this is one expense I cannot cut back on.

I spent roughly $150 last month eating out. I ate out a total of 18 times and incurred the majority of those expenses for social reasons, primarily eating out with my family or friends for dinner. A handful of times I bought lunch in the cafeteria and one lazy Friday evening I asked my husband to pick up a pizza.

I spent a little over $300 on groceries in January. I’m not sure what to think about this amount. I’ve never tracked my grocery bills particularly carefully, so I have no idea what I spend on average. I also purchased a lot of staple items like broth, pasta, rice and canned vegetables, so this bill may be a little higher than normal. I won’t know for sure until I track next month’s expenses.

I am most surprised by the $134.03 spent on discretionary expenses. When I went back through my receipts and credit card statements I couldn’t account for most of my purchases. I know I spent a little money in after Christmas sales, buying wrapping paper and discounted toys for my niece and nephew, but I could not vividly recollect what exactly I had spent the money on. In my journal I wrote down stuff at Target or stuff at Michael’s, but truth be told I couldn’t remember what the stuff was. Next month I plan to keep a much more detailed list of my discretionary expenses. I have a feeling the majority of purchases in this category were completely unnecessary.

I hope to cut expenses in most of these categories as the year goes on.

February 8, 2009 at 1:35 AM Leave a comment


onefrugalgirl AT gmail DOT com

Follow on Twitter

BlogHer Ads



buy cheap products and save money on dhgate

Coupons Plus Deals



Deal Nerd

Blippr helps you save money on everything with coupon codes, discounts and more.