Ok, I finally worked through the numbers and have come up with a loose budget to try for starting NEXT month. I will go into October with a good plan of how my money is going to be allocated. I read a good article about budgeting and the author gave some loose zones to try to aim for. The author talks about spending 60% on committed expenses, 10% each on retirement, long term savings, short term savings, and fun.
Keeping this in mind I went to work on my own budget and came up with close numbers that I hope to stick to. My budget will consist of 65% committed expenses, 13% retirement, 7.5% emergency savings, 12% debt reduction (credit cards), and 2% fun. I want to try to lower my committed expenses but we'll see how the month goes. I think these numbers will be fine for awhile. Eventually I'd like to grow towards the 60,10,10,10 budget but for now I have credit cards that need paid off, I want to get a good head start on retirement, and I have too many monthly bills.
I plan on setting up a Fun account with Emigrant Bank to save my fun money into. The emergency fund is being saved at capital one. I also have planned to take out each month in cash what I am hoping to spend on groceries and entertainment. I am allocating $150 a month on each and hopefully I will actually come in spending less and the left over money will then go to emergency, debt reduction, and fun. I will start keeping track of all monthly expenditures and we'll see how this budget works out!