Friday 18 September 2015

Horseshoes, Hand-Grenades and Bookkeeping

I am not going to spend days trying to chase that penny . . . seriously, not me, not going to do it. In my world, “Close” counts in: horseshoes, hand-grenades and bookkeeping. 

In the end, I got it done and my books are up to date, yet I had to nudge the numbers a bit. As in I had to put in a few “Adjustment” entries to make the balance up to date. 

The thing to keep in mind is that my books are not for a business or for tax purposes. As well, my numbers were not far off and I am doing this to keep an eye on my spending and see where my cash flows.

Here is what I did it, in case any of you are interested. (if not, sorry, here is a video of Cats vs. Zombies for you to watch instead).

First of all I picked up each pile of a month’s worth of receipts and plopped them beside me. I pulled the file of that month and put it beside me as well, open. On the table beside my laptop I put my sorting board. (It is a bit pricy, but worth it, trust me.)

I then picked up a random receipt and placed it in the sorting board in accordance to its day date. Repeat until done. 

Then you start at the beginning of the month and compare the receipt to the entry in the accounting system. The main reason for doing this is to categorize each receipt into the appropriate income or expense category. This is vital to determine where your money is going. Let’s face it, this is why we do these books.

You can also split a receipt into various categories. I do this for my paycheques. This way I can track how much of each tax or other deduction that I pay. 

After looking at a receipt I put it in the file. If it is a large receipt then I put it on one side of the file. If it is a small receipt I put it on top of the envelope. 

Then I stuff the small receipts into the envelope and put them on top of the pile of the larger receipts and the file is done. The reason that I have the envelope is so that all of those little receipts don’t balloon out and fall out of the file. They are organized and still readily accessible.

This process took all day and was frustrating. The fact that I tried to enter so much information from such a large period of time is what contributed to the errors in my data. Once again, this is yet another reason why it is important to keep my books up to date on a regular basis. 

For that reason I plan (insert laughter here) to force myself to sit down and update my bookkeeping once a week (Sunday night). The concept is that if I keep doing this once a week, it will never get to be such a large job nor will my books get so out of whack.

To help that I have put up this little pouch above my fridge. I pinned the inside of the pouch to the bottom edge of the bulletin board. 

First of all this is a basic pencil case. I buy a bunch of these for a dollar each, every time the new school year starts, as they are so handy. I use them mainly to keep charger and cords in for each device. For example: my phone charger and accessories are in one and my Bluetooth speaker with its charging base, charger and cord are in another. Once again very handy and cheap.

I will use this one to stuff any of the receipts that I get as soon as I get back home. This way the pouch itself is not only a handy place for receipts but also will serve as a reminder to do my books. 

I plan to do some basic repairs today, such as painting my hitch and add a truck bed spray in liner to the front of the trailer and hitch area. This is to protect it against rocks and what have you. I have already installed mudflaps on Trea, but this will help. Yes, I will also replace that damaged dome vent. Well, I had best get at it.

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