Before baby, my dh and I made approximately 36,000 after taxes. WOuld have been a little more, but I quit working in my 6th month of pregnancy last november. I'm not shy about how much we make, whether we be rich or poor. We lived on that very well, though not luxuriously. At that time we lived in a 1-bedroom apartment for 460/month, paid between $75-100 on electric, about $60-75 on phone (mostly basic stuff, but a few frills like call-waiting), about $50/mo on cable, $30 for roadrunner, $150 on credit card between us, $60-$75 on gas for our $300 paid-for car. I shelled out some money for school...books, supplies, etc, and paid for a semester of college, approx $1000. Car Insurance for the year $950 (broken down into 10/mo of $95 payments), tags renewal $36 dollars, health insurance premiums plus copays, about $3000. Our grocery bill was very high, but I'm including in grocery: regular store-bought, some organic, variety of regular vitamins and supplements, non-food items such as paper products, water filter replacements, cat food and cat care, cleaning supplies, lightbulbs, yadayada, film, pictures developing (im a nut for taking pictures), and movie rentals our bill comes out to $1000 a month! Oops, not including eating out, which we used to do all the time, especially at work for lunch out a few times a week: average $200/mo. Oh yeah, laundry $10/week in the machines. Exceptions of film developing,eating out, movie rentals, all the above a would consider needs. Now throw in wants: clothes, shoes, (thrift stores for me), occasionally a new cloth item but always from the sale rack. We also paid for our own wedding and honeymoon last year, about $2000 all told. We splurged on our honeymoon I have to say, in Orlando it was one big shopping spree, our first one in over a year. Well, this all adds up to having had just enough to get by comfortably. Pay check to pay check for us. Hope this isn't TMI for anyone, I guess this has inadvertently turned into an exercise for me to find out what happened to the money hehe.
Well, I haven't been working since last november. This year things are very different, living on dh pay which will be about 28000 after taxes. We rarely eat out, though maybe we do order chinese once a month as a treat. We moved into a 2-bedroom apartment to accodomate for our new addition to the family (February) we pay $560 now. Our grocery bill we have drastically reduced, and I'm constantly figuring out ways to cut it. We don't buy as many of the vitamins that we used to, just the basic multi and a few others for cold season. We cut out lots of the packaged food items (healthier anyway). I just found a co-op which will be saving me lots on produce and dairy! Hurrah! We have a cloth diapering kit coming in the mail now....big savings there. There is a great book that has given me some ideas called "Living Well on a Shoestring" it's got some great ideas. We don't have cable (just the cable modem now). We RARELY rent movies...i think maybe 5 all year total.
This has been a little long, but again it has been an exercise for me. Really becoming a mother has made me stop and think what is important, and in some ways money is on the bottom of the list. Staying home with my ds is the best decision I made! Both dh and I will be returning to school this fall....maybe someday we will make more...until then, we are cutting all the corns we can....but yes I would love to be "rich" financially...would love to buy all organic, buy a house and fill it with environment friendly products...that is our ultimate goal and we aren't afraid to work for it..