Thursday, September 6, 2012

First Post!

Hello, all!  Let me take a moment to introduce myself.  I'm Penny Pincher, and I am the matriarch of the Penny Pinching family.  We, like so many other families, are finding ourselves with a little too much month at the end of our money.  Here's the line-up of our family:

Penny Pincher:  Hey!  That's me!  I'm 26 and I've worked in the clerical aspect of healthcare for the past five-ish years.  I graduated in 2012 with a Bachelor's of Science Degree in Healthcare Administration, and a whole lot of debt to go along with it.  I handle our finances in our family.

Pen Pincher: That's my husband.  He works at a rather well-known pork/chicken plant, and has for almost six years.  He knows very little about dealing with our finances, but is willing to learn!

Piglet Pincher 1: That's our five-year-old son.  He just started Kindergarten in August of this year!

Piglet Pincher 2: That's our 1-year-old daughter. 

Dog: That's our dog!  (Duh!)

Pen and I have been married for seven (count 'em - SEVEN!) years.  He moved from his parent's house to my house, and never really learned how to handle his finances.  I, on the other hand, had been paying my own bills for about two years (plus I'm a control freak), so I just naturally took on that role.  I'm going to let you in on a little secret: that's not a good idea.  If I were to drop dead tomorrow, Pen would have no idea how much we owed to who, who to make our mortgage payment out to, and what bills were automatically paid through out checking account.  Plus, it's a lot of stress on me. 

And, in the interest of full disclosure, here is our financial situation:

My husband and I make enough money to pay our bills and have a lil somethin' extra left over.  That's not to say that we do pay our bills and always have a lil somethin' extra left over. 

I am the primary bread winner of the family, making $18 per hour, working 40 hours per week.

Pen makes $14.14 per hour, working 40 hours per week.  Starting after Labor Day and lasting usually through March, Pen works SIX DAYS a week, which means OVERTIME, BABY!

We pay $100 per week for daycare for Piglet 2, and $15 per week for after school care for Piglet 1.

After moving home after the birth of Piglet 1, we rented from my parents for five years, paying rent of $350 per month.  We purchased our house in January, 2011 for $82,000, with only $4,000 down.  Thaaaat's right, we didn't even put 20% down on our house so that we wouldn't have to pay PMI.  We got an FHA loan that only required $4,000 down, and we got that from Pen's grandparents.  Our monthly mortgage payment is $619.  We have a 14 day grace period, and have to use it almost every single month.  After 14 days, there's a 5% penalty, which is around $40.  We have had to pay the penalty four times since March of 2011 because there's not enough money in our checking account to cover the check. 

We have one car payment for $288.  We've only had one car payment for the past six years.  My husband drives junkers to and from work.  We bought the car he has now for $1,000, put $650 work into it to get it drivable, and he plans to use it until the wheels fall off.  It has no air conditioning, cigarette burns in all the seats, and no mirror on the passenger side.  I drive a 2010 Chrysler Town and County.

We have Dish Network, Netflix, high-speed Internet, and two window air conditioners upstairs that cause our electrical bill to skyrocket during the summer months.

We also love to eat out. 

Here's some insight into our money.  Pen just got paid today, and our checking account was down to $55.06 before his paycheck was deposited.  And just after his paycheck was deposited, our Dish Network payment came out, to the tune of $56.56.  I have been worried sick all week that the Dish Network payment would come out before his paycheck went in, and we'd have to pay that nasty $27.50 overdraft fee! 

So that's us.  We overspend.  We don't pay our bills on time.  And it's CHANGING.  I'm looking for something to keep us on task, and I think this is it.  We have vowed that we change our ways forever.  Keep me accountable, ok?  And I'll try to do my best for you.  So what can you expect?  I'll share ways we save money, recipes, and thrifty-ness.  I love to craft and DIY, so I'll try to share some inexpensive projects for all of you as well.

Thanks for reading!


  1. we are in a similar boat as you. i look forward to following your blog and getting some inspiration in how to take some more control of our lives!

    1. Thanks so much for visiting, Angela! I hope I can inspire you to change your ways, just as you've inspired me to keep going! I hope you'll follow along with my 31 Days to Financial Freedom challenge!