Friday, 18 October 2013

Effective budgeting: Waste not....want not!

Living in a world of ever increasing consumerism, its all too easy walking down the supermarket aisle, to be fooled into believing that we need things we don't even actually use!

Filling our baskets with over packaged, toxin filled goodies that we could home-make ourselves for a third of the price (and without the added chemicals) or overstock on fresh produce that's on offer and will inevitably end up in the bin by the weeks end!

As Muslims, we know that we will be held accountable for each and every penny we have spent throughout our lives. The last and final Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم‎ told us:

The two feet of the son of Adam will not move from near his Lord on the Day of Judgement until he is asked about five (matters): about his life – how he spent it; about his youth – how he took care of it; about his wealth – how he earned it; and where he spent it; and about that which he acted upon from the knowledge he acquired.”

As wives, we know we are responsible for our husband's home.

Abdullah bin Umar reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said, “Every one of you is a shepherd and is responsible for his flock. The leader of the people is a guardian and is responsible for his subjects: a man is the guardian of his family and is responsible for his subjects, a woman is the guardian of her husband’s home and of his children and is responsible for them, and the slave of a man is a guardian of his master’s property and is responsible for it. Surely, everyone of you is a shepherd and responsible for his flock.”
[al-Bukhari and Muslim]

 It is important to be mindful of how and what we use. We will be brought to account, make no doubt about that! In front of Allah we will recall all we have spent, every reckless, thoughtless purchase will warrant an explanation.
Even here in this dunya, we are accountable to our husband, and after all, the more we spend the more our husband has to go out to work!
In most households, it is the wife who takes the responsibility of head-chef in the kitchen! We know everything that comes into our cupboards and everything that comes out! We stand in front of those cupboards, staring at what we have, whilst figuring out what we can throw together to make a quick meal for our hungry brood. Sometimes, we may stare despairingly in a panic because although we may have a shelf full, we have "nothing to cook"...and then call our husband asking him to pick up something from the take-out on his way home!
The kitchen is one area of expenditure that we indirectly take charge of, because we choose what to serve up, what ingredients to use and what ingredients get thrown away! Its an area of finance that if we manage well, can really save the pennies inshaAllah!
With careful planning, a family can eat healthy, wholesome and nutritious meals on a budget, and not feel cut-back Alhamdulillah.
By planning  our meals, we can determine exactly what ingredients we need to purchase and ensure we use up everything without wasting....not to mention the time it saves not having to think about what to prepare each day!
Too much food gets thrown away. That is food wasted and money in the bin! Knowing what to cook ahead, really does make grocery shopping easier and cheaper, because you only put in your basket what you know is needed and will get used inshaAllah.
 Planning really can save time and money, allowing us to spend more in the way of Allah.
I've put together a weekly planner which allows you to work out meals plus snacks as well as jot down any appointments, outings or other to-dos.

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