For the month of October I have kept every receipt and monitored every purchase or credit, and while the outcome is mostly what I expected it to be, I do see there are some areas where I am spending more than I thought.
Within October alone, I spent $129.34 on gas, $347.99 on groceries (for two people?? yikes! I don't want to know what it would cost to have an extra mouth or two!), and $73.60 on either restaurant food or snacks and beverages. I would be more worried about the eating out, but if I map it out, that only comes to $2.37 a day, which isn't all that bad.
Of course there were the usual bills, mortgage, insurance, credit cards, utilities and phone, which added up to a hefty overall $1140.44.
The good news is that I came out on top, with a positive $227.15 difference from debits to credits, so I must be doing something right.
At a savings of 227.15 per month, that would add up to $2725.80 after a year. It doesn't feel like I have that extra cash laying around, so it's possible I've missed a receipt here or there that I'm not taking into account.
I didn't enjoy this exercise at all (frankly, who would?), but it has definitely been a learning experience. The very idea that I can save over $200 a month is certainly a motivation to be a lot more attentive to my spending habits, particularly with an upcoming wedding to plan, and hopefully plans for house upgrades.