Dog Expenses, Retirement Journey, Spending, Weekly Spending Update

June Spending: Week 4 update

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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.

This week has been a pretty quiet week. The only ‘extras’ I have spent this week were a pool float for the pool and ice cream treats for the grandkids. Money well-spent if you ask me. 😉

What I spent from June 20 – 26:

  • Groceries/Eating out: $68.81
  • Pool float/Ice Cream: $41.00 (the ice cream was double the pool float!)
  • Mom: $53.00 (a new coffee pot)
  • Pet Meds: $221.85 (Heart meds and flea and tick for 12 months) RETURNED. Waiting for refund.

Total: $384.66

How was your week?

Cash Savings, Retirement, Retirement Journey, SAVINGS

Nine months and counting!!

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We are now only nine months away from my husband retiring! This morning’s money meeting clinched the deal. Although the stock market has been taking a hit, and it seems like a disaster, there is a bright side! Interest rates for secure savings accounts are finally increasing!!

How will we manage our money?

For the first 5 years of retirement (just before taking social security), we will be utilizing laddered CDs for our living expenses. Fidelity has some high-yield laddering CDs, and I intend to take full advantage of the 5-year ladder plan within the next couple of months. We have recently taken advantage of I Bonds, which are presently yielding 9.62%. You can learn more about them here. I also moved some of our savings into other 12-month CDs that are getting 1.75% – 2%. (I know this isn’t keeping up with present inflation, but it’s much better than the .1% they had been offering). I’m keeping 9 months of living expenses in cash at Ally Bank which is finally earning at least 1%.

Why retire in 9 months and not now?

Although we could feasibly retire at any time, nine months will give us the time needed to get all of our accounts in order. During that time, my husband’s company will be adding 7.5% of his income into retirement investments, we will cap off our Health Savings Account and add more money to our liquid savings accounts. (Nothing wrong with some extra cash, right?) 🙂

It feels so much better knowing that we will have our living expenses in safe accounts, backed by the FDIC, and not holding our breath each month while the market takes its wild ride. (I’ve never been a fan of roller coasters. 😉 ) We can actually relax. We will still have a significant portion of our nest egg in investments, but since we won’t have to touch those for another 10 years, it will have the necessary time to grow.

Anyone else taking advantage of I Bonds or laddering CDs?

Retirement Journey, Spending

A question for my readers.

Photo by Olya Kobruseva on

What is the average amount you spend per month on variable expenses which include the following categories?

  • gas
  • food (includes eating out)
  • clothes
  • household (batteries, cleaning supplies, laundry detergent, etc.)
  • personal care
  • spending
  • pets
  • misc.

I’m working on a savings challenge for July and I would love to compare my expenses with yours. I know we are all in different financial situations, but I’m curious to know where we stand in comparison. Especially all you retired folk….

Thanks for your help!!!

Retirement Journey, saving money, Using cash, Weekly Spending Update

Weekly Spending Update: The cost of playing the return game.

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.

This week I ended up spending $60 in return fees with no products to show for it. UGH. The return refunds have yet to hit my bank account. It’s so frustrating, but I only have myself to blame. All items were purchased impulsively, with no real thought behind them. I failed to wait at least 24 hours before making the purchases, and I didn’t double-check the return policies.

I finally put some controls in place for online spending, and I’m hoping it curbs the ugly spending monster that still lives inside me. the impulsive spending.

Without further ado, my June 13 – 19th spending:

  • Groceries: $167.00 (Stock up from BJ’s)
  • Eating Out: $50 (lunch for Father’s Day)
  • Personal Care: $64.00 (Hair color from salon, sunscreen)
  • Home Maintenance: $229.20 (annual filters, broom)
  • Mom: $39.76 (dinner sent)
  • Spontaneous giving: $55.00
  • Weight Watchers: $42.95 (3 mos.)
  • Miscellaneous: $39.73 (books)
  • Gifts: $17.00 (Father’s Day)
  • Return fees: $60.00

Total: $764.64

Returns: ($40.12) (Phone case and charger)

Total: $724.52

I thought this week was a low-spend week until I totaled everything up. Almost $800?? The good news is that I won’t have to buy filters for a year, and I’m saving almost $250.00 by coloring my hair over the next two months instead of going to the salon. I guess it wasn’t too bad, except for the return fee. 😦

Here is a monthly recap of my spending for June so far:

Week 1: $1,660.73

Week 2: $321.13

Week 3: $724.52

Total variable spending: $2,706.38

That seems high for three weeks in a five-week month. I will need to slow way down on the spending if I want to meet some savings goals.

How was your week? How does my spending compare to yours? Please share!

Impulsive Spending, Retirement Journey, SAVINGS, Wasteful spending

Google Pay for shopping online? Not anymore.

Photo by Anna Shvets on

Google has a payment feature (Google Pay) that when you are at a shopping site online and want to purchase something, it will auto-fill the credit card number you’ve established on your Google account. It’s a quick and convenient way to pay for things since there is no need to get your card from your wallet. I thought that was so cool — until I didn’t.

Google Pay and/or Apple Pay is an impulsive shopper’s crack. With the click of a couple of memorized security numbers, you can purchase your item in less than 10 seconds. Not good for impulse purchasers like me, to say the least.

I already know how helpful it is to put space between what I think I want and making the actual purchase. Most times I give myself 24 hours and end up not buying the item. Lately, I’ve been more impulsive in my spending than usual — I’m blaming it on boredom from staying home and ‘resting’ my foot. 😦 . However, after a few expensive returns ($60) and nothing to show for it, I have finally come to the realization that Google Pay is not a tool of convenience, but more of a financial impediment to my financial goals. It is no longer an option for me, and I have since deleted my credit card information from Google Pay.

Whew. I feel better already.

Do you use Google Pay or Apple Pay for purchases online? Do you find yourself buying more?