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Archive for July, 2017

How low can I go in August

July 31st, 2017 at 01:39 am

I'm feeling the need to tighten the belt in August! I've been a little loosey goosey with spending this summer, not anything extreme, but I haven't been tracking my spending. Too much eating out, and random purchases. I go on vacation in September, so I need to get back on track next month. My fixed expenses are set, so that leaves groceries, utilities, gas, shopping, and entertainment to really tighten up. I did my usual grocery shopping today for the week and I am set with a menu plan. No eating out this week. I should be able to have mostly no spend days this week too.

Have a great week everyone!

Weekend Update

July 23rd, 2017 at 10:32 pm

It has been extremely hot and humid here, with the heat index nearing 105 degrees for the last few days. Yesterday I had a lot of errands to run and I think the heat took a toll. I had a headache most of last night and today was just feeling very tired, so I stayed in and got some chores done around the condo and napped off and on all day.

Yesterday, I spent $49.21 at Walmart on various personal care, cleaning, and food items but used a Walmart gift card earned from Swagbucks to pay for it. Then I hit CVS for water and soda and a couple of other things and spent $19.07 and used a CVS gift card from SB to pay for that. I've been consistently earning at least $100 a month from Swagbucks.

Spent $15 at a local farm stand on some delicious tomatoes, corn on the cob and peaches.

I got a $5 Blue Diamond settlement check, cashed in $4.50 in rolled change and deposited the $50 check from mom.

I realized I haven't had to buy gas yet in July! I filled up my old car around the end of June, then I traded it in and the new car had a full tank. But I'll have to fill up this week.

Not much else financial news to report. Hope everyone has a great week!

Money in!

July 16th, 2017 at 01:05 pm

My last paycheck included a 2% COLA increase, and $1200.00 bonus. Since I am at the top of my pay scale range I no longer receive performance increases as a % of my salary. Instead, I receive a once yearly bonus. I have put that bonus money away to pay for expenses for an upcoming family vacation in September. I also noticed a $196.91 credit back to my credit card from the hospital where I had an outpatient procedure done back in early May. I suppose I was overcharged or double billed.

My mom left to go back to my sister's yesterday. I miss her already. She's 90, and these visits are so precious. She handed me a $50 check for "expenses". If you knew my mom it is pointless to argue with her about these things.

Work is crazy! Career Services is undergoing a major restructuring, and over the past year many career services staff either retired, left the college for other jobs, or took other positions within the college but outside of career services. As a result, I was asked last week to assume the role of Interim Director of Career Services. This will come with a salary increase, but I haven't received the contract yet.

My utilities bill for the last billing cycle was up to $103.59. This is up from $82.69 the previous cycle. It has been extremely hot and humid where I live, and mom liked all her laundry blasted in the dryer, so the increase wasn't unexpected. I keep my thermostat set at 78, any higher and I start to feel uncomfortable. But the dryer usage will definitely decrease!

I don't use the dishwasher much because I live alone, but I always seem to have a sink full of dishes, and I wash them every day. I guess I'm just cooking at home more which is a good thing!

Hope everyone has a great week!

Still here/bought a new car

July 9th, 2017 at 04:57 pm

How did spring/summer get away from me?? My mom came to stay with me (on the weekends) and at my brother's during the week since mid-May. She will be returning to my sisters (where she lives full time) next weekend. While it was wonderful to see her (she's 90 years old) it did throw my budget out of whack! Extra food costs, eating out, way more laundry (and dryer use) and some shopping. I did not track everything, so I'm looking to get back on track soon.

In other financial news, I bought a new 2017 Camry, and paid cash! I buy new, and usually keep the car for at least ten years, or longer if no expensive problems pop up. This system works for me. I will now start saving up for the next one, so when I am entering retirement age, in about 7-8 years, I will have the funds to purchase with cash again.

I'm feeling pretty good financially. My condo is paid in full, new car paid in full, and am saving the max for retirement. I have a fully funded emergency fund as well. It took many many years for me to finally get my financial act together, and it feels great!

Have a good day, and upcoming week everyone!