Tag Archives: Budget

Debt UPdate

Adulting.  Why did I not relish in the glory of being a child as much as I should have?  Why didn’t I take more naps?  Draw on more walls with crayons?  Eat more dirt?adult-life

Don’t get me wrong, there are plenty of amazing things about being an adult!  You can go to bed whenever you want and even spoil your appetite before dinner.  Hell, you can have ice cream for supper if that tickles your fancy.

However, all of the luxuries of being an adult are outweighed by the one cruel reality that comes with living on your own:

BILLS.

It is ALWAYS something!  Every time I feel like P and I are getting a handle on our debt and we are starting to make progress in the road to one day being DEBT FREE …

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Cue joyful Whoopi gif

life throws in a speed bump, then a pothole, and finally just for shits and giggles one heck of a financial detour.

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Followed by discouraged Whoopi

Let me preface this rant by just stating a few things.  I’m so incredibly lucky.  Everyone is healthy, I am 33 weeks pregnant with a healthy baby that I can’t wait to meet in mere weeks, and we have a roof over our heads, a bed to sleep in and bellies full of food.  Life for the most part is amazing…

BUT why does there always have to be a BUT?

When we found out I was pregnant we had been trying for years.  We had definitely planned for the extra finances that a baby requires.  We also bought (ok, we actually financed) a new vehicle that was safer and more family friendly for myself and baby.  We crunched the numbers and an extra car payment could squeeze into our budget.

BUT…

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The reality of your computer’s motherboard dying isn’t nearly as stylish as when it happened to Carrie in Sex and the City

Then my husband’s computer crapped out (his motherboard died). It was 8 years old (which is like 150 in computer years) and he works in IT and has to have a top notch computer in order to do his job.  Well, a top notch computer is expensive.  P built it himself with all the bells and whistles.  Let’s just say it’s black with red components (he was going for a Darth Vader theme ) and the red LED lights he placed in his new computer now make our office look like a XXX store.  It was definitely an expense (not to mention office decor) that was unexpected for me.  We ended up having to finance it.  Boo. On the upside we were able to get 12 months no interest, but still its an extra monthly payment that we were not planning on this year.

Then a few weeks later P’s Jeep decided that it was sick and needed to go see the Jeep doc.  That damn Jeep racks up more medical bills then any other Jeep I know.  Then the following week, my old Jetta decided it also wasn’t feeling well and racked up another bill 4 times over what the Jeep bill was!!!!

WTF!

So in a nutshell, our debt is back to where it was last year.  All the progress we made is now back to square one.

BUT…

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I’m discovering that all of the bills, the stress, the responsibility, and the unexpected twists and turns are just a part of being an adult.  Time to put my big girl pants on (and oh, how BIG my pants have gotten) shake it off and start all over again tomorrow with a big girl panty attitude!

 

Til next time,

Ang

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Back on ice

Just when I think P and I are making progress when it comes to our spending, the realization kicks in that old habits do, in fact, die hard.

For those of you who don’t know our sordid history with credit cards here is the condensed version:

on-phone-with-credit-cardBoy meets girl.

Boy and girl date on and off for 7 years before eventually marrying.

Boy and girl start using credit cards to pay for things they want but can’t actually afford.

After 3 years of marriage, boy and girl discover that they have racked up over $12,000.00 in credit card debt alone.

Boy and girl consolidate debt at a much lower interest rate and start to see their credit card debt go down as well as their blood pressure.

Well that is the story thus far which looked like it was on its way to having a happy ending, but we all know that looks can be deceiving.  The boy and girl in this story recently decided it would be a bright idea to have a credit card in each of their wallets in case of an emergency.  While paying bills this week, I (aka “the girl”) checked to see if we had a balance on our credit cards and we did:  We racked up charges in two months to the tune of OVER $900.00!!!!

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Some of the charges were on items we discussed putting on the credit card because we could justify taking it out of our savings/home fund(a few household expenses and P’s work clothes for his new job).  However, a majority of the bill was on a bunch of little things that we should not have been putting on a credit card (food, gas, nights out with friends, etc.).

tumblr_mh71i0wldt1rdld7ao1_r1_500We now have nearly a thousand dollars to deduct from our savings (money that was going to go to landscaping our front yard) to pay the credit card bill, because it will be a cold day in hell before I add another cent to our already existing credit card debt.

Needless to say, today we are putting all of our credit cards in a container of water and sticking it in the freezer.

frozen-debt

Ang

 

 

Panic over paychecks

P started his new job this week.  With the job change, he now only gets paid once (vs. every two weeks at his old job) at the end of each month.  I also have a job where I get paid at the end of each month.  Even though our monthly income remains the same, we now have to really budget our money since it is all coming in at one time.

Panic sets in.

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Ang

Let the snowball roll

This morning we finally paid off P’s dental bill!!!!  Gif3With this last unexpected expense finally paid, we can get our debt snowball rocking and rolling to start paying off all our other debt (credit card, student loan, car payments, mortgage…the usual).

If you aren’t familiar with Dave Ramsey’s snowball method to get out of debt, let me break it down for you.

You write down all your debt starting with smallest to largest.  By the way, this is definitely the most cringeworthy part of the process (it is nauseating to see all of your debt on one piece of paper).

So for example, our debt from smallest to largest goes like this:

P’s dental bill.

My student loan.

Credit card.

P’s student loan.

Jeep loan.

Mortgage.

You pay the minimum payments on all of the debt except the smallest debt.  Any extra money you have during the month is put towards the smallest bill along with your minimum monthly payment.  Once the smallest debt is paid off  you then start to tackle the new smallest debt (which for us would be my student loan).  So next month I can put the dental bill payment (which was $225/mo…I really need to introduce P to floss) as well as any extra money we can come up with and pay that amount in addition to my minimum student loan payment I already make (which is currently $150/mo).

giphyBreathe. Save. Repeat.

With one debt gone, I am sure that I am going to be able to sleep a little bit better this Labor Day weekend.

Hope you all have a frugal weekend!

Ang

Meal Planning

fridge_cleaningWhile cleaning out the fridge this week (I know I lead an exciting life, be jealous) probably about $50.00 worth of groceries were thrown out.  It makes me sick that so much of our food goes bad because when we go grocery shopping we never have a plan.  A few items are scribbled on a list, but when it comes to dinner each week, it is improvised every night.  This results in grabbing fast food, going out to eat, and throwing away way  a lot of spoiled food.  The result all around:  We are wasting too much money.

So P and I are tired of failing to plan and planning to fail.  We want to come home after a long day of work and enjoy a healthy home cooked meal every night.  So we are actually going to plan out our meals for the week and are going grocery shopping today with a list.  Wish us luck.

Here are a few youtube videos I watched to get some inspiration for our shopping trip:

(the elevator music in this video is horrible, but she has some really good tips for meal planning)

(this video has no bad music and has great ideas for some healthy meals)

If you are a planner like these ladies and have any tips let me know!

On to the grocery store!

Ang

The Casino Hangover

908f7cbe83e513d709f96b040a7a4ac626989e5b203612536600f2f70c4841ecLast night we made the horrendous mistake of going to celebrate the Fourth of July at a casino.  Everyone lost their money, except for me.  I broke even in the eleventh hour.  One spin won me my $120.00 dollars back 5 minutes before the fireworks started…

Relief.

However, I will say that one always suffers from a casino hangover once you lose your ass or if you break even.

My casino hangover was in full swing today!  Will definitely be avoiding the casino until my credit card debt is gone.  Though I lucked out last night, I fear that when it comes to gambling the house always wins.

f4f966850315441ac5c6f9f22badc9aa4e467139b479dd68d464c031405f5502Sorry this post is short, but still nursing a  a real hangover along with my casino hangover.

Have a fabulous night and see you for an all new post tomorrow!

Ang

Cutting Back

51992529At the beginning of the year I promised you loyal readers that I would be out of over $10,000.00 worth of credit card debt by 2015.  I may have been overshooting…BUT let me explain.

Life happened.  Cars needed fixing, teeth needed fixing, medical “stuff” needed fixing.  Life.

BUT (I like big BUTs and I cannot lie) now that a majority of those bills are all caught up, it is time to refocus on my bad debt, that nasty credit card debt.

We have been paying more than the minimum each month on our monthly bill so our total credit card debt is down to around $8,600.00 (I should know this amount down to the penny BUT I don’t).  With only half the year left, I am not sure we will be completely credit card debt free in 2015 but P and I have decided to make three changes in this household to cut out some of our monthly expenses.

  1. Surprise discount on our phone bill.  P went down to our cellular phone company for work purposes and a super groovy employee mentioned to him that he actually gets a work discount for his personal account as well (though I wish we would have known it sooner).  Surprise monthly discount of $25.00.
  2. Jeeper by the dozen.  We decided to downgrade from an ’09 Jeep Rubicon to an ’06 Jeep of some kind (asked P what kind, then he started telling me how to word the “Jeep” portion of my blog and we ended up getting into a Jeep/blog fight which ended in silent treatment the rest of the night which means he won’t even “like” this blog on facebook now…damn). Anywho…monthly savings of over $130.00 in Jeep payments.
  3. Bye bye Bravo.  P went down to our cable provider (which I was going to give him special props for until he pissed me off when I was writing number 2 on this list) and cut the TV.  Sad day BUT this decision just saved us $70.00 a month!

That means our total monthly savings by cutting back on a few things is around $225.00!  Which means in the last half of 2014 we will be saving a total of $1,350.00!!  Sweet!

This credit card debt may not be gone in the next 6 months, BUT these small changes will definitely help..

See you tomorrow for an all new blog in my #93daysofblogging challenge, and hope this blog inspires you all to cut back on a few little things for the greater good!

Ang

P.S. If anyone knows any marriage counselors who specialize in fights of the Jeep and blogging variety, let me know…

More Month Than Money to More Money Than Month

Total-Money-Makeover-Book-CoverDave Ramsey uses the phrases “more month than money”  and “more money than month” in his book “The Total Money Makeover”.  I have this book and read it once a few years ago, and am back to reading it for a second go round (because maybe his advice will actually “stick” this time).

It seems that P and I always have just a little bit more month than money and I am tired of dipping into our savings each month to “survive” until the next payday. This upsets me for two reasons:  1)  I should not be dipping into our emergency fund unless it is an emergency.  An “emergency” is NOT running out of money because we spent way more than we should have and now can’t afford groceries the last week of the month, and 2) We make a decent living.  By no means are we wealthy, but we make okay money and it is just the two of us and our pets, so we HAVE enough money each month, we just don’t spend all of it the way we should.

So why does this keep happening to us?  Why can’t we get our financial s$#t together and have  more money than month vs. more month than money?

Because we rarely make a budget together.

Because we are lazy.

Because we can think of a million other things that we would rather be doing with our time than sitting down and talking about our personal finances. UGGGHHHHH!  My blood pressure can’t be good right now…

walletWhat prompted this rant on this Monday?  Today is payday for both of us.  I love/hate payday because I feel rich for a moment and then overwhelmed with writing out our monthly bills and with all of the questions on what to do with the excess of our money (since we don’t make out a monthly budget). How much should we put in savings?  A vacation fund?  Groceries? Gas? Entertainment?  How much can we put towards our debt? Who has a birthday/wedding/shower this month and how much should we give to that person?

In any relationship, if you combine your money, there has to be a designated bill payer.  I am the bill payer in my relationship so for me,  every payday is a pain day.

This month, I am going to try to spend a little less time watching Bravo and lure my husband away from playing Battlefield 4 (even if that means flashing him some boobies) and create a budget for the next half of the year.

Hopefully taking the time to make a monthly budget will be completely worth it (and I have a feeling it will).

Happy Monday and have an even happier payday!

See you back here tomorrow for an all new blog in my #93daysofblogging challenge.

Ang

 

 

Date Night (Of The Old Married Couple Variety)

P and I went on our first date night in awhile.  We came up with…wait for it…dinner and a movie!  Super original, I know.  We had a $50.00 gift certificate to a local Italian joint and arrived at 5, but we didn’t make reservations and they were booked up until 8 (we may be in our 30s but we have the dining out habits of senior citizens).

We decided to forego eating past our bedtime and ventured to a Mexican place right next to the movie theater instead.  Meal was good, beer was better, and the conversation was always awesome (though I feel that P was offended when I told him that Jennifer Lawrence reminds me of a modern day version of Jennifer Grey).  Here are some pics from the dinner portion of our date:

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And we were able to catch the early show of X-Men:  Days of Future Past (it was awesome,  and the reason Jennifer Lawrence was brought up at dinner).

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Home  before 10, our old married couple date night is complete!

Have a great night and I will see you back here tomorrow for an all new blog in my #93daysofblogging challenge this summer.

Ang

 

 

 

 

 

Fried Day!

It is Friday (a.k.a. my brain no want to thinky no mo’).

Despite my friedness on this Friday, I did want today’s blog to be a recommendation for any of you who have a little time to kill this weekend and have access to Netflix.  Watch:

Tiny_KeyArt-728x1024Tiny:  A Story About Living Small!

I initially put this on my instant queue a few weeks ago under the assumption that it was a documentary that I could relate to.  The name led me to believe that it was a documentary about the trials and tribulations of small chested women.  Women with A and B cups dealing with day-to-day life and the heartache of frequenting ladies’ nights at their local bars only to be rejected by men and have to ultimately pay for their own drinks.

I realized though, just a few minutes into this documentary, that Christopher Smith (the director and narrator of the film) was not a small chested woman at all, but in fact, a 30 year old man who decides to settle down, buy some land and build a teeny tiny house.  I won’t give away the rest of the documentary, or else why would you want to watch this flick?  Right?

This documentary really got me interested and slightly intrigued with the idea of living in a small house.  Picturing me and my husband, our dog and cat, mortgage-free in a 150 square foot space.  Living simply and having the entire outdoors as our living room.

Then I started thinking about the whole “toilet” situation.

More importantly the whole “what happens on the toilet” situation.

Most importantly the whole “what happens when my husband is using the toilet” situation.

Then the idea of sharing a 150 square foot space with my hubby lost all of its allure.

Ultimately, I DID really fall in love with the aspect of living more simply.  It has inspired me to start sorting through all of my clutter and “stuff” and stripping down my life to just the items I love and need.

Seriously, check out this documentary and let me know what you think.

See you tomorrow for an all new blog in my #93daysofblogging this summer challenge!

Just look at how excited this baby is about my challenge

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This baby “memes” business (c’mon, now that is an adorable joke),

Ang