I've recently started logging all our expenses on my calendar. I was interested to know where the money went. I could see the withdrawals from the checking account, but who was getting our money? April was my first full month of keeping track, when I added it all up it was around $850, and I knew that had some frivolous purchases. Last month in May our total money spent $753, here's the breakdown
Groceries $230.50 (includes $18 for dog food)
Water $23 (both cistern and bottled)
Misc $57 ( art supplies and curtain rods)
This could have been brought down further, if we hadn't been to the Big City, because that is where we spent $57 on art supplies and curtain rods. In my calendar I have the groceries listed under what market I get them at, so I know if it's $7 at Jenny's or minimart, or $13 at Charapoto mercado. Because I do it by the day, I also know we ate out 7 times, all that for $78! And that does include drinks, beer or milkshakes for dessert. The heading of hardware, is all to Joffre, I bought nightlight parts, silver spray paint and toilet fixing parts, which got Joffre a $4 tip included, because he was so Johnny on the spot to come help. Under the bread heading, I added postre, because Nexar the bread man has been very diligent about making cake for us. (we shared with Joffre some sweets too.)
We don't have medical insurance, but several people we know do, $70 a month, no copays, dental included and easy breezy to use. (From what we hear) We also don't have a car, and since we didn't go anywhere, we had no transportation costs. (The ride to the Big city was free, even tho I did offer to pay for gas, but gas is only $1.48 gallon so even if I did pay for gas it would be less than $5.)
Kinda exciting, I think back to when we lived in Greensboro, North Carolina, just to run the house was $2000, my monthly food budget had been $300, but that wasn't adequate and had to be raised to $500, no wonder we had to work so much! I prefer this life MUCH better! So there you have it, I would not say we have gone without, we are not deprived of anything, we are happier and probably healthier than ever before, and so the adventure continues, stay tuned.