I've highlighted the five year lows in green. There are a few where we were close to the all time lows, but didn't quite achieve it. And, one where we were close to the all time high. *Travel*. :-)
I track all of our budget categories, but feel we can most easily control the categories below, so specifics for those below.
Some thoughts one each of the categories:
- Boys all - we cut back on one activity, so that made the difference in the downward trend. This doesn't include college savings.
- Dining out - Super pleased by this number! It's taken quite a bit of dedicated effort to get this so low. We are just to a place where we try to replace meals out with easy at home options. I've also gotten better about prepping & planning meals during travel days, to avoid eating at the airport.
- Groceries - this one was at a five year low, but entertaining at the beach pushed us just over ($75) our five year low. I'm still very pleased, given we now have much bigger eaters & the price of groceries have gone up.
- Clothing - We're doing okay on this one, but I'm going to cut my own clothing expenses for 2019 way back to $250 for the year. This will include a new pair of running shoes, which will be the bulk of the spending.
- Travel. We added two unplanned trips to the budget. Our trip to Hawaii was an agreement when I decided to keep working - an extra "motivation", so to speak. That's what pushed us way over. It wasn't, however, a 5 year high, as we apparently spent more in 2014!
- Toiletries. I did well, although we didn't track in 2013, so I'm not 100% sure it was a five year low.
- Personal. These are hair cuts for the kids & M, primarily. I also got my hair cut once. You can see that my changes to spending in hair cuts have led to a huge tick down from prior years.
- Gas. We bought an electric car, so we've been able to keep our gas spending much lower.
- Utilities. Like gas, we invested in solar, so this was a planned investment to reduce our utilities over time.
- Gifts. M & I greatly reduced what we bought each other for the year, so we could continue to by for others. We don't need anything at this phase of life, and can buy what we need. It's more fun to treat others.
What about you? How are you doing with your discretionary categories? Any all time lows? Or highs?