win a copy of the Money Saving Mom’s Budget :: giveaway

I have a very exciting giveaway for you guys today!

Okay, so have you heard of Money Saving Mom? It’s one of my very favorite blogs! It’s a site dedicated to “helping you become a better home economist,” where you’ll find the newest shopping deals and get inspired to become organized and save money on a daily basis. {I love that!}

Crystal Paine is the woman behind it all. She is truly an amazing lady- I’ve been reading her blog since 2007! Crystal was the one who inspired me to read Dave Ramsey’s Total Money Makeover, the book that led us to getting out of consumer debt back in 2008, and allowed us to buy this old house in 2010.

I give all the credit to Crystal for leading us to the right way to handle our finances- I’m so thankful that she shared their story and so strongly encouraged debt-free living on her blog! {Her family is very inspiring- her husband made it through law school and their family stayed entirely debt-free, and they just paid for a home completely with cash!}.

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Her newest project is the Money Saving Mom’s Budget: Slash Your Spending, Pay Down Your Debt, Streamline Your Life, and Save Thousands A Year. You might’ve noticed it was on my goal list to read this month. She sent me a copy to review, and I read it in less than two weeks! {reading is coming back this year! yay!}

I’ve read and loved Crystal’s blog for so long, so of course I was eager to read her book too! I didn’t know if I could learn anything new from it after being such a long-time reader, but I was actually pleasantly surprised.

I was excited to read the chapter on doing a debit-free experiment for three months! That was a new concept to me! We don’t use credit cards, but we do love the debit card, so I think that would be tough for us! I love a challenge!

The book also gave me a fresh outlook on the importance of taking things like budgeting slowly instead of leaping into it full-force like I am apt to do- a concept that could branch over into all sorts of personal habits. I’m so into that.

Here’s the thing about it: I think her blog is amazing- you can find a wealth of information there- but it comes in bits and pieces, told through lots of clicks and shorter articles. The book gives you the steps you need to know, in the order you need it. Which I LOVED. It wasn’t overwhelming at all; in fact, it was just the opposite- one baby step after the other of practical ways to put your money and life back in order.

Blogs may become more and more popular {and I love them so!!}, but Crystal’s book made me realize the value of a single volume of information- it’s the whole story told by the author in the way in the order they want to present it. Does that makes sense? It was just so enjoyable to read her book- it was like having a conversation, or listening to a friend.

I also loved reading her personal stories as she weaved them throughout the book. The Paine family is so humble- but it’s so obvious that they love the Lord. I so admire their dedication to living for Jesus, and I love how they honor Him by sharing their testimony of His faithfulness in their finances and other parts of their lives. They’ve been great stewards of the resources they’ve been given, and it’s a blessing to see them and have their example in this culture that never has enough.

You’re going to love this too: all of the proceeds from this book go to Compassion International. No joke. Isn’t that the coolest thing ever? Ahhh, I love it!! :D

And my most favorite thing about the book: it totally inspired us to get back to a budget again and to really buckle down and pay off our home in the next year or two. Since we are debt-free but the house, we haven’t been paying as much attention as we should to our spending and saving, and the MSM's Budget really motivated us to get back to paying off our house debt!

The book is a must-read if you want to find order in your life again and make your money work for you instead of against you. I loved reading every chapter {especially the one about going completely plastic-free!} and was excited to pick it up each day and get motivated all over again.

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So you all know I was completely thrilled when Crystal emailed me last month to see if I would be willing give away a few copies of her book!! Three of you lucky readers get to win a copy of Money Saving Mom’s Budget: Slash Your Spending, Pay Down Your Debt, Streamline Your Life, and Save Thousands A Year!

All you need to do to enter is leave me a quick comment answering this question:

Do you use a budget each month?

You can also earn two bonus entries each day by using the buttons below to share this on Facebook and Twitter! Just leave me a comment for each instance to get another entry!

Entries close at 11:59 p.m. PST Sunday night, Jan. 22, 2012 and three winners will be announced Monday morning! Good luck!

*2nd picture from MoneySavingMom.com

**disclosure: I received no compensation for this post other than a copy of the book for review.  All opinions are my own. Links to Amazon are affiliate links through which I may receive a small percentage should you decide to purchase the book.


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279 comments

  1. Yes we do. We are paying off our last debt, our mortgage, which is only possible by having a budget and sticking to it. Thanks for the chance.

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  2. Just now learning to budget well. Five kids and one income...well we dont have much of a choice. praying for a lot of discipline! :)

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  3. We attempt to have a budget and stick to it, but it is definitely a learning process.

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  4. I'm a new SAHM & would love to learn some great money saving tips!!

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  5. Oops, didn't answer the ? I have an almost 6 week old....need I say more. ;). Ok my husband & I do have a monthly budget on an excel spreadsheet but I would to be able to save us even more $.

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  6. I totally use a budget. My husband and I are fans of the envelope system.

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  7. Loosely budgeted lifestyle, we just don't spend much on anything.

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  8. God is soooooo good! No I'm very sad to say we do not have a budget. We are in desperate need of getting out financial act together. We constantly live in survival mode. I could go on and on but I will spare you. I'll just say I so need to read this book. Thank you for sharing a great book and great blog. Praise God for YOU!

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  9. No I don't but hope to start. This book sounds really great!
    Stephanie.
    s.noelle94@gmail.com

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  10. No budget at all! I'm really hoping to buckle down on that!

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  11. We have one, but I know it could use some tweaking. We are trying to pay off the last of our debt so we can save for a house. I am a wife and SAHM to two toddler boys, we live on one income and I need to do more on my end with the budget.

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  12. Posted your giveaway on Facebook!

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  13. We do have a budget.My husband is the breadwinner and he works in construction so every week it changes.But I do have a dollar amount I have to stick to.

    Blessings,
    Brenda
    pattersonmom24@aol.com

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  14. I have had a budget fr time to time but been very inconsistent. I need to be better becausey daughters tuition is increasing and going to be a challenge.
    Christy.broyles@gmail.com

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  15. We do have a budget and we use the envelope system but we could definitely use some more discipline and some new ideas as our savings is not growing as I would like. Thanks for the great giveaway! Found your blog from The Pleated Poppy.

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  16. Have tried to budget but haven't been able to stick with it. Would love to learn, because we want to own a home.

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  17. Sadly, no. We do not use a budget each month. We would like to, but figuring it out seems so difficult! Hubby is self employed so it's not like her gets a set pay every other week. :-/
    Mrsmicah (at) cox (dot) net

    Great giveaway! I love your blog!!

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  18. We sure need to get on a good budget! Seems like we get ahead and then something happens and backwards we go! Thanks for the opportunity to win this book :)

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  19. I shared this on twitter. Thanks. -Jamie B.

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  20. We Use a budget every month. Both of us have to work to make ends meet so it's important that we aren't wasting that money. Brab99@gmail.com

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  21. I have a loose budget that is a general guideline for the pay day but a lot of money seems to slip away without me really knowing where it went, Crystal is wonderful, and I would love to read her new book. You inspire me too, I just discovered your webstie when my friend told me to check it out, thanks! I am going to set monthly goals and try to be more productive-and nicer to my 6 kids!

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  22. tweeted - https://twitter.com/#!/saristrawberry7/status/160948687676260352

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  23. Shared on FB - http://www.facebook.com/saristrawberry7/posts/240460822697153

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  24. Hey lady! you are the winner!! Please email me your mailing address to mandy at biblicalhomemaking dot com :D

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  25. No. But desperately need to!

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  26. I would love to win this. We have a budget, but I think it is extremely lacking. We have worked hard to get where we are, but we would love to be debt free.
    jebgafrisk.blogspot.com

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  27. In the past, when we were poor college students, we had a budget. We still got into debt, but it definitely was not what it WOULD have been had we not budgeted. We lived frugally & still do. We currently have a plan we are following to get out of ALL debt, but I suspect we can do better. Thanks for the opportunity to win this book!

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  28. budget - oh that is a hard word for me. i use one to pay all my bills but then it goes out the window and there is no rhyme or reason to our spending. that is one thing we're working on this year and trying to make it a life long habit so there is something left at the end of the month.

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  29. of course i shared via fb, i luv both the blogs, lol!

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  30. No, but really need to start one.

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  31. With the economy how it is, I have no choice but to use a budget. The problem is that my husbands paycheck it different each week depending on business. I do my best to cut costs wherever possible, but saving is impossible at this time, I am also a full-time college student online with two children in school. I am also going to home school next years, so every bit of guidance on budgets I can get, the better.

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  32. Yes, I budget every month. We learned from a wise couple early on in our marriage how to budget. Neither of us were good with our money, or lack of money. ;) I am always looking for more ways to stretch our money and make things a bit easier for our family of 7.

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  33. Do I use a budget,? Not the way I should, I budget for food an have ben pretty slack on budgeting for bils and such.

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  34. Yup we make our budget every 2 weeks. We took Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace University class as part of our marriage counseling while we were engaged. I bet this book has some awesome tips!

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  35. My husband, after bugging me to create a budget forever, created a budget for us this month on Excel! (I have no idea how to use Excel.) I'm very excited!

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  36. Yes, we set up a budget using Mint online.

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  37. I sort of have a budget but nothing super tight or that could really work for us. I budget all of our main bills and how much each week on food but would love to find some better ways of saving. This book looks awesome!! Thanks for the chance to win it!

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  38. I shared this giveaway on my facebook page, too! Thanks so much for the opportunity!

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  39. We do our budget by paycheck--every two weeks. We're in the becoming-debt-free process!!

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  40. I shared the link on Twitter, too! The more the merrier!

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  41. Love your blog and I would love to have this book! I try to budget every month, but I do not seem to know how much to spend on paying back credit card debt vs. what to keep in my account every month and I always end up falling short. One of my goals this year is to pay off my credit card debt and be plastic free by the end of the year!

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  42. I would love to read Crystal's book! I love her blog. We use a "loose" budget, it's all kept in my husband's head (he doesn't like written budgets). His income varies from week to week, so we are diligent about living well below our means.

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  43. Yes, we use a budget. We love using mint.com to help keep us on the right track.

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  44. Yes, we are budgeters, but would love the book for any tips and help!

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  45. Yes, we have a budget. Excited for this giveaway!

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  46. Yes we have a budget. Would love to win a copy of this book!

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  47. My husband and I create a zero balance budget each month.

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  48. Shared on facebook.

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  49. No, but I know I need to.

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  50. Sadly we do not use a budget each month. We try some months but never seem to stick to it.

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  51. I have to say that we do not use a budget each month but, i would like to start. As i am now a new mom and plan to be home with my child..

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  52. Yes maam!!! It makes all the difference in the world.

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  53. We have a budget, but we are bad at following it.

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  54. I shared it on twitter https://twitter.com/#!/KendalBarriere/status/159349409476386816

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  55. We don't have a budget. Neither my husband nor I are spenders so we tend to save a lot of money each month. I'm sure we could save more with a budget, but we really don't need to spend the extra time or energy making sure we stay inside the budget right now

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  56. We have a budget, but we don't always have to follow it because of some margin in our budget.

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  57. no...but clearly need to start, with a second baby due in 8 weeks we will have double the diaper expenses... we have a 20 month old too!

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  58. I do not have a budget for each month, but I really should! I'm sure it would help a lot. :)

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  59. Shared on FB...thank you.

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  60. I don't have a set budget each month but spend the same amount of money. I know, it doesn't make sense but it's always the same! :)

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  61. We do not have a budget but do save a set amount each week/month to our savings account and retirement account. We have always watched how we spend our money. I tend to think do I really need this before I buy something.

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  62. I am in the process of starting a budget and am currently scouring the web looking for systems and tips. So far I think Dave Ramsey's got my attention :-)

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  63. I had one last year and it was amazing, since then I have crazy spent. Uck. Going to do another Dave Ramsey class so that should jump me.

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  64. We go back and forth all the time...use one for a few months then not. We did really well on a cash budget last year and then went off it when my husband was laid off from his job with a regular salary. It was harder to stick to when he served at a restaurant for a while.

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  65. I shared this link on facebook

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  66. We use a simple budget from Dave Ramsey. It works for us.

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  67. we try to use a budget but it doesn't always work

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  68. Tweeted at mrsmaryvanessa

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  69. As a single mom of 8 - I have to budget every month

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  70. I keep a budget spreadsheet in google docs. I sit down once a week to enter the week's receipts and expenses.

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  71. No, we do not currently use a budget but are in the process of setting one up. We were thinking along the lines of Dave Ramsey but I think Crystal's book would be a wonderful help!

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  72. We definitely use a budget! I hope Crystal's book can help us find even more ways to streamline our spending and save!

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  73. We don't use a budget, however we are in the process of setting one up and I would love to read Crystal"s book to help us become debt free!!

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  74. Went to Financial Peace University last year and am trying to REimplement our family budget this year. It's tough but we can do it!

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  75. We have not been budgeting since 2009, but it's time to get back on that horse :)

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  76. Hi Mandy! We do use a budget of sorts but I know there is a better way. Some good sound guidance would be a God send!

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  77. Melissa H. (kmah1302)January 29, 2013 at 10:02 AM

    Shared on FB too!

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  78. We don't currently use much of a budget, but I'd really like to get one in place that both me and my hubby can stick with. We want to be better stewards of the blessings God has given us.

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  79. Hi! I stumbled across your blog for the first time today and love it! We do use a budget but would love to learn more ways to save and pay off debt :) Thank you!

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  80. Not consistently. Its on my new years resolution list to find a better system. This book looks great.

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  81. Matt and Maureen McGeeJanuary 29, 2013 at 10:02 AM

    We don't use a budget the way we maybe should - like you, our only debt is our house. We made up a line item budget in excel that basically just shows us that we have plenty to pay all our expenses and contribute set amounts to savings. But all that extra money is probably just getting frittered away...

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  82. I have an excel buget. As I get paid every other week, I have assigned all my bills to everyother pay day. This way I make an extra payment on all outstanding loans each year. When I do not need to make a regualr monthly payment if I am a head, I use that money to pay more on my current loans.

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  83. We definitely use a budget, because we need to be accountable for every penny in our tight financial situation.

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  84. We do use a budget but its not as tight as it should be!

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  85. I do have a monthly budget, but it's not uncommon for us to be a couple months behind maintaining it. As of right now, I don't know if I'm over or under...

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  86. We use a monthly budget.

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  87. I have written out a monthly budget many times but I am not good about keeping track of it.

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  88. Yes, we use a monthly budget

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  89. Not as a family, but I have a "fun budget" for myself

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  90. We use a monthly budget...and we do pretty well at sticking to it.

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  91. We attempt to follow a budget, but my husband is commission only so it is difficult to stay on track! I would LOVE to read Crystal's book.

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  92. Shared on Fb - http://www.facebook.com/saristrawberry7/posts/330740386957037

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  93. tweeted - https://twitter.com/#!/saristrawberry7/status/159396966806192128

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  94. We have been using a budget on and off for almost a year. My goal is to really stick with it, but sometimes we get off track and don't seem to follow it.

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  95. How funny that my hubby is a budgeting/planning business intelligence guy as his job but we don't have a budget for our household. Although we have never been in debt and we do save/invest, I think having a budget would be helpful to see what areas we save even more to do a little traveling and other fun stuff.

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  96. We are JUSt using a budget now. It's tough but doable!

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  97. shared on FB

    Marisa Meme

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  98. I have been using a budget for 1 year now, and love it!

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  99. We are working towards a budget! I do have a "certain" amount of money each pay period to cover specific categories. I am determined to only use cash! I've made some mistakes this past year with credit cards, and what I love about God is even though I made the mistake, He is helping me out of it quickly! PTL! I have Dave Ramsey's envelope system, next on my list is to actually start using it. I have made it since Jan 1st on only cash and I truly believe the Lord is helping me. Last week I was at ZERO for another week (4 kids!). The Lord blessed me with $100 to get through the week! I know He honors the heart that wants to do what's right. I headed right on over to the Money Saving Mom's blog. I would love to have this book for my new budget adventure!

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  100. We have been using a budget for about 3 years now. It makes a big difference in our household.

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  101. Funny, we do have a budget (I married an accountant), but I seem to spend the same no matter what!

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  102. I'm trying really hard to.

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  103. I do...but I could be better at following our budget! I love Crystal, too!

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  104. Well I have made budgets, but never stick to them, funny thing is yesterday I sat down and followed Dave Ramsey's plan and put it altogether, so hopefully this time it will stick

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  105. We do have a budget and I love being on it. It keeps me so focused when I shop.

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  106. We use the Dave Ramsey plan, but this book is on my to-be-read list so I'd love it if I won a copy!

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  107. We started budgeting a year ago, using cash only! It is making a huge difference and making us better stewards of our monies!

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  108. I have a budget on paper, but we're not very good at sticking with it. That's one of our goals this year.

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  109. Hello, I was using a budget however we recently moved and all of that has unfortunately gone out of the window, so I am tyring to get back together and get back on track. I need this book!!!!!

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  110. shared you on google + and facebook...the answer is kind of ;-) its hard to have a strict budget with VERY fluctuating income. we are still learning

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  111. Yes we have a budget every month!

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  112. We need to go back to accounting for every penny in a more strict budget. We used to have a budget to the penny as Dave Ramsey advised but as of late we have gotten very behind.

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  113. We have a work in progress budget. As we try to budget more, we find new budget categories that we need to create and others we need to slim down on.

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  114. I have tried to create and use a budget, but it has not been easy. I could really use some great tips on how to do that.

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  115. Yes, we use a budget. Still learning how to best budget to bring freedom and life as opposed to feeling restricted!

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  116. Because it's a new year we are doing the envelope system again and paying off debt Dave Ramsey-style. I think and pray we are fed up enough with our unorganized, indebted lifestyle!

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  117. Shared on FB and liked you on FB

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  118. I have been using a budget with lots of wiggle room but with a pay cut and my son going to college, I am making a new budget for the year with very little wiggle room.

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  119. I budget using excel to track expenses.

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  120. I try to use my budget but something always comes up and I don't stick to it very long.

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  121. https://www.facebook.com/ruthannalston?ref=tn_tnmn I shared on FB

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  122. I shared on Twitter https://twitter.com/#!/lilgirllost72/status/159428160147034112

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  123. I would love to read this book. Yes, we do use a budget. Do we always keep it? No. Pretty close, though....

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  124. Yes, absolutely I use a budget. Month to month is easy, its the big goals that intimidate me and seem impossible to accomplish.

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  125. I do not have a set budget but try to see how much my bills are and how much I will have left at the beginning of a pay period! I probably need to be on a budget...

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  126. I would love to have this book! It looks great!

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  127. I do not have a set budget but try to see how much my bills are and how much I will have left at the beginning of a pay period! I probably need to be on a budget...

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  128. I have a specific budget regarding groceries. I will not spend over $100.00 a week for a family of 4. I know that sounds like a lot but we live in the NY City area and it's expensive! Otherwise, I'm not a big shopper and try to be as frugal as possible. Consignment shops are my best friend ;)

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  129. My budget is pay bills first them see what left for the things we need.
    Love and peace
    Gina

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  130. We do have a budget but it's not really written. We just kinda plan out our finances for the next 2 weeks.

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  131. Yes, we use a budget every month. In the past 3 months or so we have switched to Dave Ramsey's zero budget billing method. Still struggling with some things and working out the kinks. Learning process and self discipline required.

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  132. We have a monthly budget that we do our best to follow.

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  133. We do not use a budget each month...but after each month I add up what/where we spent money & make a note how what we are spending too much on!

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  134. yes! we are very new to budgeting but we are working to spend less and pay off those bad choices we made with the credit card.

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  135. We do use a budget! In fact we have made some changes this year that are working out well so far!

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  136. I have a budget, but tend to be a little "flexible" on the spending categories. So, if I'm running a little long on the gas column, then I know what's left in groceries to off-set and vice-versa.

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  137. Mama-to-six-below-tenJanuary 29, 2013 at 10:04 AM

    We seriously need a book like this! We don't budget faithfully because it seems so daunting. Funny thing - I entered to win this same book at the other homemaker blog I read and she just announced the winners. I wasn't one of them. :( Maybe this time!

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  138. Yes, we use a budget and use cash. Thanks for the opportunity.

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  139. Yes, we have a budget, but we do not use it properly. I need to do some work.

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  140. We just started for the first time in 20+ years of marraige!

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  141. we use a budget, and trying to get into the all cash form of payment!

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  142. I am a stay at home mom of four, with lots of medical debt from health issues my son has faced, and we are looking to get this debt along with some other off of our shoulders!!!
    So I am looking for ways to save money, and looking for a budget, that has God on the top of the list!! So I guess my answer to your question is no...

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  143. We used to use a budget, but have fallen off the bandwagon. Hoping to start it up again soon.

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  144. We have tried to use monthly budgets in the past, but have not been very successful. And for almost a year we haven't been budgeting at all. But we want to get back on track - and this would be the perfect start to that!

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  145. Yes, we use a budget each month

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  146. Long answer: We are a debt-free house except for one car and one house. We are also self-employed so it makes a monthly budget hard so we don't actually do it but we do track all of our spending. We hope to budget so maybe Crystla's book is just the thing for us. We just started attending a new SS class and are studying a new book, First Fruits Living: Giving God Our Best by Lynn A. Miller. Sounds like it might compliment what you are already doing/know about living a Jesus-centered life. Thanks for all the blogs. I love the variety and also learning from your amazing biblical knowledge.


    Short answer: no. :)

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  147. I budget out by percentages: 50% of my husband's paycheck towards needs (which includes things like garbage and electric bills, cable/internet bill, etc. with a subdivision in this of a budget for every two weeks for groceries and sundries/toiletries); 30% for wants (with a subdivision in here for 10% tithing for church plus other giving); 10% for our car payment and student loan payment; and 10% for savings.

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  148. No, we do not currently live on a budget. I'd like to go through a Dave Ramsey course and track our spending better.

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  149. When we were younger I kept track of our spending and had a budget but both my husband and I are so frugal we were usually under budget so I don't formally have a budget.

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  150. I try to do a budget, but it seems it keep having to be adjusted.

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  151. We have used a budget for quite a few years now and I can't imagine NOT using it. It's ingrained in us now! :-)

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  152. I don't have a specific budget, just what needs to come out. This is something we're working to establish, however!

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  153. My goal for this year is to live on a budget because I have one remodeling project left in my house ...the kitchen. We have let our finances get more lenient since we paid off everything but the house. Hopefully we can get it done this year!

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  154. I do use a budget, especially after going through Dave Ramsey's Total Money Makeover!

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  155. No, we aren't on a budget; I just figure we are cheap enough to naturally live below our means. But I would love to have the freedom of having our house paid off, and I'm sure it would happen faster with a budget.

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  156. We make a budget, but struggle to stick to it. One of our goals this year is to get our finances in order so this would be a great help.

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  157. Yes, we have a very detailed budget!

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  158. We use a budget for most things, but need to get more specific. Would love to win this book!

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  159. Yes, I use a budget. It's created in Excel and tracks monthly savings of special items that aren't paid monthly (car insurance, life insurance, etc). Thanks Dave Ramsey for getting me out of debt. I'm hoping I can thank Crystal for helping me be even more frugal :-)

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  160. Yes, We use a monthly budget, but like you I want to pay off the house.

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  161. yes, but I don't follow it as closely as I should

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  162. Tweeted! https://twitter.com/#!/cyndycusson/status/159505134026633216

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  163. Yes, we use a monthly budget but don't always follow it as closely as we should.

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  164. Yes, I use Mvelopes for my budgeting software. Love it!

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  165. Hi there! I am new to your blog and already love your "voice"! My finacee and I don't have any credit card debt, but we don't really follow a budget at all! I would really like us to start planning and dealing smarter with our money so that we can actually have a wedding at some point!!!! LOL. Sounds like an awesome read! Thanks for a chance to win!

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  166. We do not use a budget every month, but I have been hoping to start the Dave Ramsey thing soon here, if only I could get my husband on board.

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  167. I shared on twitter:
    https://twitter.com/#!/jaxw1208/status/159537856312918017

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  168. We have a budget in theory, but don't always live strictly within it. We need a better method of managing our money that is simple and more structured. Thanks for the opportunity to win this valuable resource!

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  169. definitely use a budget! have to!

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  170. I do budget, but not a disciplined budget. It is hard with the hubby, he does not like to be told we have no money left in that category.

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  171. following on twitter

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  172. After taking Dave Ramsey's class at church we are much better about budgeting. Two family illnesses/hospitalizations have put a hit on the budget but we have managed to stay our of debt. If it were not for those kids I could easily keep a budget :)

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  173. I would like to be able to follow a budget, but it never seems to work. We have recently started to write down our every day spending and track that for a month.

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  174. following on facebook

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  175. Oh I have this on my to read list and would love to win a copy! We do live by a budget, although sometimes it is hard it is worth it!

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  176. I am trying to implement a budget system this year. I haven't found one that is easy to use for a beginner.

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  177. I am trying to budget, however I usually fail. I find school or sport expenses right now are killing what budget I have.

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