Thursday, March 15, 2012


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Banana Republic Dress (similar)/ Ann Taylor Tank (similar)/ Banana Republic Shoes (similar)
I decided to break out the open-toed shoes today. Yes, I know it's only the middle of March, but if it's over 80 degrees, I believe open-toed shoes are acceptable, especially if one has just had a pedicure.

Today is also payday, which is always a welcomed day in my book. It means that bills will be paid, food can be bought, electricity and cable will remain on, and if there is enough left over, it can mean a trip to J.Crew.

Payday also gives me another opportunity to meet my financial goal for 2012 - save more and spend less.

The other week I told you about my "No Spend Day" challenge. To update you on the first couple weeks of this challenge, I successfully did not spend any money the first week of the challenge, managed to spend money every single day last week, and then made up for it by not spending any money two days this week, so I am back on track. I know I can do this.

I also recently stumbled upon the balanced money formula on the Get Rich Slowly blog which might just be the key to balancing what I want with what I need and saving more throughout the year (please note, this may not be the right strategy for everybody and I am in no way a financial expert). Lucky for me, the formula is simple: take my income after taxes and split it into three categories - needs, wants, and savings. Ideally no more than 50 percent of my paycheck should be spend on needs, at least 20 percent should be devoted to saving, and 30 percent can be spent on wants.

For those of us who are visual learners, this is what this looks like:

Also, if you are anything like me, there is sometimes a blurry line between my needs and my wants, so here are the definitions for these terms:
  • Needs are things that must be payed no matter what: housing, food, utilities, transportation costs, insurance.
  • Wants are everything else: cable television, restaurant meals, concert tickets, comic books, clothing beyond the basics, etc.
  • Saving comes last in this plan. Everything left after taking care of Wants and Needs is set aside for the future.
I just began using this formula last week and so far, so good. I imagine after a full pay cycle of using this formula, I will have a better sense of whether this truly is the key to having a balanced financial lifestyle. As always, I will be sure to keep you posted.

Hope you all have a Happy Thursday! XO

Messy Jess C.

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  1. This printed dress is so pretty on you! I also broke out the sandals yesterday :)

    I think the balanced money formula would work better if I was making more money, haha.

    The Tiny Heart

  2. That sounds like an awesome plan! Good luck sticking to it!

    You look so great in a wrap dress. I totally can't pull those things off, they're never quite the right shape for me for some reason.

  3. I love the print on that dress, and the shoe color looks perfect with it! That formula is useful, although I find myself going over my budget more often than not. My shoe love knows no bounds :)