Winter Budgeting.

Even if your freezing your toes off in a pair of $16 Vans in the ever growing snow of Germany, you better update that budget! Recalculating after actually living abroad for the past four months is an essential process to make sure you are not spending more than you earn. And since you are abroad in a foreign country with a language you can maybe-sorta-kind of speak, your income should state: $0 (commence the sobbing.)

In better news, my budget's looking damn fine these days! Considering I grossly overestimated my budget in order to trick myself into spending less because I was always thinking about how much money there wasn't going to be leftover, funds are good. For this winter update, it was sized down to realistic proportions, meaning I got to see what will really be left over. Things I didn't account in this list was the budget for my Belgium and winter break trips (with my  SF friend Heidi), so those will be pulled from the leftovers. If you'd care for a peek into my financial life:
click to view large.
Those of you who have kept up may notice some charges left out, like Brussels, but those are because I have paid them and forgot about them or etc reasons. I will also note that since I have to pay the leftover costs that ended up not being paid from another source, my budget allowance will have a significant 3K subtraction probably. But, I also may or may not have money hidden in mattresses, drawers, camera bags etc. ;) But I'm using some of that money to buy winter boots. My feet are frozen in these vans, and my tennis shoes seem to trap the cold inside. Brrrr.

For those of you who have not or never have created a budget, I urge you to do so now! It's a vital element of financial success in all areas of life, and especially while living abroad (as it is so easy to lose track of funds during conversion.) Here are a few of my favorite helpers:
How to build a budget-MSN Money
A First Timer's Guide-The Simple Dollar
Bundle  (just found this site, might be worth a try?? I'm with Mint, but can't now because lack of using anything but Euro here in Germany.)
*the blogs below also offer budget advice, just click through until you find something that perks interest!
Did I mention that I have a secret love with personal finance blogs (and I can spend over TWO HOURS on my food blog love/ overly obsessed obsession, but that's for another post)? Here are some favorites:
Give Me Back my Five Bucks
Punch Debt in the Face
Budgets are Sexy
Fabulously Broke...in the City

I leave you with two questions: Do you have a budget? If not, how on Earth do you keep track of your finances??


  1. I don't have a budget as such, and admittedly keep track of my finances via periodically looking at my bank account. Fortunately, my expenses aren't all that great, so it largely seems to work out - but still, it's something I resolved to change next year.

  2. Make it a resolution! I really credit budgeting with allowing me more chances to spend money on things I really want in life.