April was a rare month where my spending was higher than my income for the month. While I was only over by $87.03, and I have a very healthy emergency fund to cover it, I began thinking how easy it can be to fall off the “frugal” wagon and suffer from belt tightening fatigue.
An unexpected dental bill of $102.40 was the main culprit, but I still did some shopping, dining out, gift giving and grocery stocking up while some foods were on sale (chicken). A few of the things I bought were wants, not . And while I am not really concerned about overspending a little one month, it just goes to show how easy it is to do. It seems to be getting harder and harder to balance staying out of debt, saving money, and still being able to enjoy life.
I know I’m not alone in feeling frustrated with inflation, the continued rising costs of food, and other consumer goods. Not to mention gas prices, utility costs, and well, pretty much everything!
Here is my monthly spending update for April:
Income Total: $1475
* $1200 Recurring monthly retirement account distribution
* $275 Swagbucks and My Points earnings (cash out to PayPal)
Total Spending: $1562.03
Total Savings: $0 (difference between monthly income and monthly spending)
Verizon bundle (internet, cable): $160.43
Cell phone: $59.78
HVAC and water heater contract: $29.95
Condo Fee (includes water and trash) $190.00
Health Care: (includes health, dental, vision, prescription plans) $477.78
Groceries: $105.32 (stocked up on coffee and chicken)
Health: $122.40 (co-pays, scripts refills, vitamins and personal health care items)
Take Out and Dining Out: $34.80
Shopping (anything other then food): $163.98
* Condo is paid in full
* Car is paid in full (2017 Camry)
* No other debt
Groceries: I stocked up on coffee pods and chicken that was on a good sale. I should not need these again for quite a while.
Gifts: I gave my nephew a $50 gift card for his birthday and also gave a $25 gift card to a good friend for her birthday.
Dining Out: I took my brother out to lunch and had take out once.
Shopping: Some wants and some needs. I needed to restock my makeup and skin care basics as I was almost out of everything. The rest was household stuff and clothes (some wants, some needs).
Health: I had a $102.40 dental expense