Life gets expensive, but a simple family budget helps you track regular expenses and gives you the tools to save for retirement. It is never too late to get a handle on your family’s finances. Gather your water, electric, cell phone and cable bills, as well as all other bills that you pay each month. Then look at what your family spends in groceries and gas for one month. That will give you an idea of all of your fixed, regular expenses. Compare your monthly expenses with your monthly income to give you a picture of your family’s overall financial health.
Simplicity in the Kitchen
The kitchen is the hub of most households, and unfortunately, mealtime is often a rushed affair. Simple living begins in the morning. Make sure you have a good selection of whole grain cereals on hand so no one in your home leaves for school or work with an empty stomach. You should keeping an adequately stocked pantry and having an arsenal of simple recipes on hand will help you manage your time when you are feeling rushed. Keep canned staples like crushed tomatoes, salsas and your favorite creamed soups. Dried pastas, whole grain breads and a variety of rices also help you keep dinner time on time.
Computers and simple living go hand-in-hand. Whether you use your computer for work, to pay bills, play a game or two or as a way to stay in touch with friends and family, the computer has become the “other” member of the family. Calendar programs help you simplify your family’s schedule. Spreadsheets allow you to see your finances and even plan your itineraries. Your computer even comes loaded with simple keyboard shortcuts which make word processing and internet browsing simple.
Whether you are part of the corporate world, own a small business or are the C.E.O. of your household, everyone needs a simple business plan. You need to know what your financial goals are for the week, month and for your long-term financial stability.