Thursday, January 15, 2009

An envelope system for Mother Hen's Homeade Thursday

Mother Hen at a Ship Full O' Pirates, one of my favorite blogs about living frugally as a large family has just started an link for Thursdays called Homeade Thursday. The only link up I've done so far is OrgJunkie's Mealplanning Monday (which is easy for me because, lets face it...I'm a meal planner!) but I can't wait to make this link up with Mother Hen my next adventure in blogging!

The directive is to tell about something homeade and do it on Thursday. It can be something made, cooked, anything you like, the way I understand it. It just has to be homeade. She also would like clear directions and pictures. Unfortunately, I think Shelby has misplaced my camera cord. I can't find it anywhere since she last put our pictures on the computer. Ah Oh! So my entry this week will have to be without my own pictures. I just tried to think of a project where I could borrow pictures to illustrate the points instead of taking them of my own project. I'll try to get that cord and have my own pictures next week!

I LOVE LOVE LOVE Dave Ramsey and would love to have his deluxe envelope system but it sells for $19.95 and we just do not have that kind of money while we are still on BS#2 (paying off debt).

So I searched around until I found something that would work for us but yet, is still in our budget.

What I found is such a simple solution and actually I think I like it even better than the Dave Ramsey envelope systems! I purchased a simple (purse sized) binder for less than $2 similar to this, but mine has a velcro flap to keep it closed:

As for the dimensions of the binder, think purse-sized planner size.

Then, at the dollar store, I found little neoprene pencil pouches (just a tad larger than an actual dollar the perfect size) for $1 each.

They came in all different colors, brights or pastels and some really funky patterns too. I chose one pouch for each envelope budgeted. Total investment was less than $8...well over half what I would have paid for Dave's and no shipping charge either. Use a hole punch to make the holes in the correct places and walah, discounted homeade (but still pretty nifty) envelope system.

Alot of you might be asking, why not just use a coupon holder? I had one of those onhand and tried it. What I found is that the change all falls to the bottom, so if you want to know exact amounts, like I do, or worry about your coins flying around and sneaking out, this pouch system is better. You might also wonder, why not just hole punch some actual envelopes? That's pretty much what Dave's system is, an actual manilla envelope in a pretty leather wallet, but I think I like the sturdiness of the neoprene to hold my money in. While my little binder doesn't have the little slots for my debit card or a coin purse, I just made a paisley patterned pouch hold my checkbook, debit card (just one) and anything else I would's my actual wallet part of the wallet system. The best part of my system versus Daves is that I can put the whole binder in my purse, or I can carry just one element at a time...the individual pouches can be added or taken out of the binder as needed.

While it's not exactly totally homeade. I think that this "semi homeade" project definately follows the criteria of Mother Hen's Thursday project. For frugal families, we have to find that compromise between what we want and what will fit our needs. With a little ingenuity and creativity on our part, we might like our homeade version even BETTER!!

Happy Thursday!


  1. What a clever project! Ingenuity is the name of the game. Very cool! And thanks for linking. :D

  2. My pleasure! Thanks for sponsoring it. Guess what? You're my first thanks!

  3. Thanks for participating in Mother Hen's Homemade Thursday. Come aboard the Ship. I'm handin' out awards and your name is on th' list!


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