I love, love, love making new year's resolutions. Every year I declare, "This year will be the Year of ___!" You can fill in that blank with many different words like Fitness! Art! Patience! Organization! I get really excited about the vast prospects that lie ahead, I make lists and plans and then the new year arrives and within days I've forgotten it all. (Sound familiar?) Well THIS year is going to be different. I have declared 2010 to be the Year of Money! Mainly saving money, because if it was about making more money, then I'd have to go out and get a real job. Boo. But I'm excited, my spouse is totally on board (this is key), and we are setting specific savings goals. MONEY!
We've already taken steps. The first thing we did was sign up with Mint.com, a free online personal finance program that tracks all of your financial transactions and categorizes them so you can see things like: hmm, we spent as much on groceries in December as we did on restaurants. THAT MUST CHANGE. So here are a few things I'm working on to get money, money, money, which also happen to be sustainable practices. Funny how those two concepts often go hand in hand.
Meal planning: Our restaurant spending is primarily due to the fact that I'm not a meal planner. Five o'clock rolls around and I realize the pantry is bare. So I'm getting myself a weekly planner and taking the stress out of dinner. It will also help me to stop wasting food: no more wilted produce and expired meat products. This meal-planning post on Unclutterer (and the comments) is fascinating. Do you have any good tips to share?
Energy savings: Can I tell you how much I love my new Kill-a-Watt? I plugged it into our secondary freezer and learned that we spend approximately $11.25 per month on it. That means that I need to be making sure we're getting our money's worth: stocking up on bread when I can get it cheap (Nature Bake Outlet!), soaking and freezing beans, you know what I'm talking about. I also purchased two Smart Strips for our computer and television devices, and I have plans to decrease our heating bills.
Clutter clearing: I'm on a rampage right now, going through closets and boxes and hauling away stuff that never sees the light of day. I've also sold a few things on Craigslist. (Money!) I love knowing exactly what lives in any given closet or cabinet. And I'm hoping this freedom from stuff will tamper our urge to spend money on new clutter.
OK, so that's me. What about you? Any resolutions you want to share -- any support you need? Happy New Year, everyone! It's going to be a great year!
This post is part of the Green Moms Carnival hosted by Katy at Non-Toxic Kids. Hop on over there to learn what other green moms are resolving for 2010!