Deployment, Living for TODAY, Positivity, Retirement Journey

An August update.

Photo by le vy on Pexels.com

I can’t believe a whole month has passed since I’ve posted. I thought August would be a financially quiet month, but alas it was filled with spending – lots of spending – albeit the good kind!

Here’s the breakdown:

  • I booked and paid for a cruise for January with my daughter;
  • I paid extra on our mortgage as we are trying to pay it off as quickly as possible;
  • I purchased a few more items for our Europe trip in a couple of weeks; and
  • At the last minute, my husband and I decided we wanted to surprise our son at the pier when his ship pulls in after a 7-month deployment in a week, so we paid for a flight, hotel, and car rental. I.can’t.wait. 😉

To say I spent a lot of money last month is an understatement, but I must say it was all worth it! I truly have not added it up this time. (Perhaps I don’t wan’t to know….)

Even with all of that spending, our networth managed to increase from July by $27,000 (mostly from investments) . We are still on track to retire on time. 🙂

How was your August?

Goal Setting, Positivity, Retirement Journey, Spending

A July Challenge Update….a little late.

Photo by Jorge Urosa on Pexels.com

I apologize for this late update, a lot of unexpected stuff came up and my blog fell to the wayside. I closed out July on Saturday, and thankfully it wasn’t as bad as I thought. Spoiler alert: I did not meet my challenge goal.

Let’s just get right to the numbers–

July’s spending:

  • Groceries/Eating Out: $623.00
  • Personal Care: $182.00
  • OTC/Medical: $74.00
  • Clothes & Accessories: $395.00 (hubby bought a few items too!)
  • Gasoline: $32.00
  • Gifts/Spontaneous giving: $352.00
  • Mom &Dad: $80.00
  • Pet: $66.00 (dog food and misc. accessories)
  • Travel (road trips and misc. travel products): $665.00

Total: $2,117.00

I was $1,367 over my goal of $750.00. I can honestly say I do not regret any of the spending. After analyzing the different categories and amounts, I realized that at least $1,000 of the $1,367 overage was for my trip to Italy this September. Planning this trip has sparked so much joy, that I’m not the least bit discouraged from failing this challenge. I’m actually energized and excited for more opportunities to travel, especially in retirement. 🙂

I know some of you were doing the challenge with me, and have been successful! Congrats! Please let me know what you are going to do with all that extra money you saved!

How was July for you?

Budgeting, Impulsive Spending, Retirement Journey, Spending, Weekly Spending Update

July Challenge Update: July 11-17

Photo by Karolina Grabowska on Pexels.com

It’s been a crazy week for my July challenge. There has been a lot of buying and returning — primarily travel-related and clothing. I will try to be more diligent with my online orders, and hold off purchasing clothes until September. I’m definitely a work in progress as far as online spending.

In other news, I decided to go ahead with the bone stimulator ($2,000) for my foot, because I will try anything before surgery. That will come directly out of our Health Savings Account fund.

An Unexpected expense.

I spoke with my son this week. He is still on deployment and unfortunately got Covid as did most of the sailors on his ship. He told me he was pretty sick for a while but thankfully he is now on the mend. He was vaccinated and boosted, so I imagine he contracted the new variant while in a port. He never asks for anything, but this time he asked for snacks. I was out the door as soon as I ‘hung up’ the phone (as any Mama would do 😉 ). $180 later (and worth every penny), a 14x14x14 care package was on its way. 🙂 Included items: Vitamins, Emergen-C’s, cough drops, toothbrush, soups, mac and cheese (add water), cookies, beef jerky, chips, and candy (the non-chocolate variety, as chocolate would melt). It was filled to the brim. He is in a port now, so I hope his package will get to him soon!

An idea of what I sent. 🙂 (via)

Without further ado, here is my July 11-17 spending:

  • Groceries & Eating Out: $51.00
  • Misc.: $3.00
  • Pets: $99.86 (dog food and dog pool)
  • Misc. travel: $99.00 (Travelon backpack/cross body bags)
  • Mom & Dad: $38.00
  • Spontaneous Giving: $180.00

Total spend: $371.86

It is clear that I won’t make my $750 challenge, especially since I’ll need to do a large grocery shop soon. Unexpected expenses will always pop up, and as long as I can keep my usual categories within limits, I’ll still be able to sock a little money into savings.

How was your week?

Living for TODAY, No/Low Buy Update, Positivity, Retirement Journey, Travel

July: A challenge update and a few unexpected surprises!

Photo by Maria Orlova on Pexels.com

It’s July 12th, and I’m well into my July savings challenge. As far as the everyday spending, I did well.

Here is my spending from July 1st – July 10th:

  • Groceries/Eating Out: $107.96
  • Road trips (excluding actual vacations): $169.01 (a trip to NY to visit my parents)
  • Gas: $0 (All gas was for our NY trip included above)
  • Vet/Dog Food: $0
  • Personal care/household. $37.00
  • Gifts: $17.02
  • Clothes: $0
  • OTC Meds: $16.00
  • Personal spending: $0

Total Spending: $346.99

My goal was to only spend $750 for the whole month, however certain circumstances and happy surprises have made me change this month’s challenge and pivot.

Here’s what happened in July (so far):

  1. My foot is still fractured: An MRI confirmed it. Okay, this wasn’t really a surprise, but I was a bit disheartened. The orthopaedic doctor said I had three options – 1. stay off foot and give it more time 2. try a stem treatment to stimulate growth in the bone for the low, low price of $2000, or 3. have surgery. (He didn’t sound confident in any of the choices, so I can tell you surgery will be the very last resort.) I’m seeking a second opinion and I will see where this leads before I make any decision. In the meantime? I liked option 1 the best, so I’m staying off my foot.
  2. My husband received a raise! This was quite unexpected, as he hasn’t had a raise in three years. It was a very welcome surprise. 🙂
  3. We booked a trip to Italy! We were presented with an opportunity to take a ‘bucket list’ trip this September to Italy. The price was amazing, so we decided to go for it, foot issue and all. We booked a 9-night Mediterranean cruise. We will be spending two days in Barcelona, Spain before the cruise and two days in Rome, Italy after. My husband and I are thrilled to be able to go on this trip, something we’ve wanted to do for a very long time. (The extra money from my husband’s raise actually clinched the deal. 😉 )
Photo by Piotr Arnoldes on Pexels.com

The trip itself was paid for from our vacation/travel account, which we’ve been building up for just such an occasion. Since we’ve never been to Europe, I want to purchase some extra travel items as well as some new clothes. This will most certainly put me over my savings challenge budget, which I am perfectly fine with. I still hope to reign in my normal expenses i.e. eating out, groceries, personal spending, etc. so that I can put away some extra spending money for the trip. I’ll do a follow up monthly spend at the end of the month. 🙂

How was your week? Any suggestions for how to dress for Spain, France and Italy in September? Please share!

Cash Savings, Goal Setting, Retirement Journey, Spending

June Spending: Adding it up.

Every Monday during 2022, I am posting an update on what I spent for the week (variable spending only) as a way of keeping myself accountable for my impulse spending. Also, to see my true savings, I am tracking items I was tempted to buy but didn’t.

Photo by Lukas on Pexels.com

(I thought I would post this a day early)

June is in the books, as well as the first half of 2022. It’s hard to believe how fast this year is going, and also how slow. (I’m anxious, for many reasons, for this year to be over!).

This week’s spending is rather high, mainly because of gift-giving. I was late in getting wedding cards out (to weddings we didn’t attend) and a family friend’s baby. I decided to just get it down all in one fell swoop. Ouch. I also filled up my gas tank on the 30th, and both categories felt a bit like ‘cheating’ before going into July’s challenge, but I wanted to be fully transparent.

Here is the spending for June 27 – 30th:

  • Groceries: $121.31
  • Eating out: $45.00
  • Personal Care: $7.00
  • Gifts: $506.00! (2 family birthdays, two weddings, and a baby shower!)
  • Gas: $41.65

Total: $720.96

June’s recap of spending by week:

Total Spending for June: $3,812.00.

Not the best month, but pretty consistent with my average spending. Hopefully, I can whittle that down to at least half going forward.

How was June for you?