I will tell you the secret that very few people will be willing to do but it will change your life. In October 1987 the stock market dropped more than 20% in one day. That month I began tracking my net worth on a spreadsheet and for every month thereafter I have continued this practice, 391 months in a row and counting.
Each month I give this report to my wife. Some months we discuss but not always. This simple practice has helped us to work together. It has helped us feel we are both in it together. It helps us prioritize. It requires us to make investments in ourselves and to hold each other accountable. It helps us to make adjustments in time for those adjustments to matter. It has led me to educate myself on investments so that our family is more financially secure. It takes about an hour a month and has made all the difference in helping me understand the following important point:
You will make mistakes. The secret is not repeating them.
As you begin thinking about budgeting for college (or anything) always keep in mind what you have and where you want to go. The real secret is not your budget but the motivation to stick to your budget.