I have so often been the frustrated budgeter, but today I am feeling very encouraged as I think about things. I just finished our July budget, and here are some thoughts I had in case you need to be encouraged in your frustrated budgeting, too!

I’m encouraged to do our budget today! We’ve been strict budgeters for a few years now, but we’ve never been perfect – we buy things that we shouldn’t and we keep having very expensive life events. Even after forking it over to pay off all our student loans, we have accumulated debt again because of the roof, AC/Furnace replacement, having two kids, and a couple of other things. I’ve been so discouraged and frustrated about how we just can’t break even! But today as I completed our July budget, I had a couple encouraging thoughts about budgeting that inspired me to suck it up and keep trying! GAZELLE INTENSITY! (That’s a Dave Ramsey phrase, in case you were wondering.) We are Dave Ramsey people!!!

1. It sucks at first to buy basically nothing, but after a while, you just get used to it, and it doesn’t suck that bad anymore. A bit of sacrifice becomes normal. Discipline with how you spend is a good thing, and you start to appreciate the things that you need instead of always dreaming about wants. You still have the wants, but they just aren’t so prevalent anymore. When you are able to find contentment and joy in what you are doing, you don’t ache quite so much for other things (although I’m still working on my desire for new carpet in the living room – it’s just the worst! But I have to wait. Waiting is good for me.).

2. You learn that you can afford a lot on a little bit of money when you plan well. This is a big one for me! The planning is key! We put money into savings each month for our yearly purchases (like our home taxes, auto and homeowner’s insurance, amazon prime, my blog fee, yearly eye doctor appointment, life insurance premiums, car license renewals, etc) even if they are really small ones, and then it doesn’t seem so frustrating when the bill comes after a year.

3. I realized today that once we’re out of debt, there is a very large amount of money that we’ll be able to use for other things. This probably seems like a duh statement, but think about it this way: we are living off of one income and still paying all our debt down little by little. This means it is possible to live off one income and have extra left over because once we’re out of debt, all that will be extra! So imagine how great it’ll be with two incomes and no debt! WOW!

Sometimes, it just gets so discouraging to have so much debt. I feel hopeless a lot of the time, like there will never be a point when we can afford anything. But then I remember that God provides. I remember that He has never failed us! I remember that His will doesn’t require us to have so much junk anyway, and I am able to refocus on what’s eternal instead of what fades away. I hope these words can encourage you today!


  1. Great post! I am a Dave Ramsey person too (8 years now) and I am curious about your first point. Have you found that you and your family have become more creative in finding things to do for entertainment since you started making sacrifices? This is something I have found, but want to know about other peoples experiences.

    Keep up the hard work!

    1. Well, my kids are extremely young (both under 2), so our forms of entertainment at the moment include playing on the swing in our backyard and in our kiddie pool and watching Netflix. Sometimes, we take our kids to our parents’ for the night and go back home and cook dinner together and watch a movie on Netflix. We just accepted that we can’t afford to do expensive things anymore and to enjoy the gifts that we have like quality time instead of expensive outings. There is plenty of fun stuff to do for free, especially this time of year!

  2. It’s so great that you have started on his path at a young age. You will get there, finding much happiness along the way. The best thing is what a fantastic example you are setting for your lovely children! Wish you all the joy in the world!

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