Sunday, January 31, 2016

January Spending

We had an expensive month with our vacation but we did not overspend in areas that we usually do.
Vacation $707.16. This was our spending money and money for parking, transportation to our hotel, all airport spending.
Groceries 526.45. Yay!!! This is low, even with 5 weekends.  We still bought food for our house when we were gone as the kids and MIL were here.
Gas 234.70
Misc. 186.20. New screen for my phone prior to vacation and a few other misc items
Alcohol 169.53 beer for us plus a few bottles of wine for MIL as thank you for watching the kids
Medical 160.29 misc items from December, should be medical flex moving forward
Activities 127 skating for Lil Punk and gymnastics for Punk, I'm going to do a parent tot gymnastics class with G starting next week.  Oh boy!
Household 90.41
School lunch 100 I just pay whenever the balance is low, should be good for a couple months
Clothing 94.98 new swimsuit for vacation and winter coat for Lil G
Toiletries 97.07 razors, makeup, expensive month for this
Cat 20
Eating out 6.90 we are actually going to consciously up this as we want Lil G to behave better in restaurants and work on overall dining manners.  He's 2 so it's hard.
Savings $1400. Woohoo!  Only 48,600 to go!  Lol

I thought it was a good month. I had toyed with the idea of doing a no spend February but I'm not going to.  I leave tomorrow for a short 3 day business trip and I will be doing some shopping.  In my town, we have Walmart and JCPenney so when I can go shopping, I usually do.  I want to go to the J.Crew outlet store.  I'm looking for a spring coat, belt and maybe jeans.  I will also buy Punk leggings there if they have kids stuff.  I'm sure I will also be buying drinks for myself and the support people who help me earn my paycheck.

How was you January?  Are you doing the be spend February?

Friday, January 29, 2016

Taxes

I'm such a nerd that I actually get excited about doing our taxes.  This year I'm using freetaxusa.com so my federal return should be free.  I will mail in my state because I don't want to pay to file them.  I've used TurboTax before but this other one seems just as easy to use and is free.

I'm still waiting on two investment statements but I calculated that we're getting back about $2000.  Yay!!!  We saved a lot of taxes by maxing out my 401k.  Now I just need to work on Y and max out his 457.

We are in the process of finishing our basement so I might make a deal with Y about the refund.  He can use half the refund for that and I will put the other half in my Roth. We already maxed out his Roth and mine is slow going.

Does anybody else get excited to do their taxes?

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Stressful Day

Today is a stressful day at work.  Aargh!  Most days I like my job but sometimes I don't, like today.  I like the challenge of it but I would also like to have an easy job.  But I've had easy jobs before and I was bored.  I also really like making money.

Maybe I should be a food critic.  I would love to check out new restaurants and write a review.  I would probably feel bad if I gave a bad review though and ruined a company's business.

What is your ideal/dream job?

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Vacation Update

We came back this past week from Playa del Carmen, Mexico.  We had a good time relaxing by the pools and beach, checking out the local town, doing activities and eating too much delicious food.  I didn't get sick at all.  The resort was very nice.  The drinks were good.  I was able to spend my days relaxing and reading a couple books.  BUT I missed my kids like crazy and wish that they would have been there with me.  It was a very international crowd at the resort and lots if other families had their kids there.  I will vacation with my kids next time.

I have actually already started tentatively planning our next vacation.  I want to be able to use credit cards and reward programs to pay for it.  I love vacationing but I like paying nothing for it.  Lol!  We shall see if it is possible.

Meanwhile, I'm relaxing after vacation this weekend.  I have already had one nap today and I see the rest of day being equally relaxing.  We had a travel nightmare on the way back that prevented us from getting back at a reasonable time on Tuesday and I went to work on Wednesday with about 4 hours of sleep. It made for a long remainder of the week.

So happy to be back and I hope all my friends on the East are ok.

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Tuesday Update

We are leaving next week for Mexico and I have a bad case of anxiety about leaving my kids.  My MIL is taking them and will be staying at our house when Punk has school.  I am so worried about leaving them.  At this point, if I could cancel the airfare and get my money back, I would do it.  I know Punk and G will be in good hands but I just worry about them. It's so hard to leave them even though I know we are ready for our first ever kid free vacation since having Punk.

In the last two weeks, we bought half a beef and half a pig.  For the pig, we got 99 pounds (hanging weight so I think we actually get 60% of it).  The meat was $148.50 and 83 for processing.  We ended up with about 60 pounds and paid about  $3.86 a pound.  The pork was the best I've ever had.  For the beef, it was 405 pounds hanging weight which probably netted us about 243 pounds of meat.  The meet was $900 and the processing was $238.  That works out to about $4.68 a pound for locally grown hormone free beef.

I'm stealing a page from The Hawaii Planner and trying my best to eat 5 servings of fruits and veggies every day.  I'm terrible about making sure my kids eat well and then I will eat whatever.  For instance, they will get fruit as a bedtime snack.  After they go to bed, I will grab chips for a snack for myself.  I want to lose 5 pounds which I attribute to my taking birth control.  I've stepped up my workouts and need to focus on my eating, especially because I will be in a bathing suit next week.  Yikes!!!

For Mexico, does anybody have any advice on what to bring?  My coworker told me to bring Imodium in case we get sick.  Anything else that is a must have?  We've never been there so any advice would be helpful.

Sunday, January 3, 2016

December 2015 Dividends

This is a recap of dividends received and new stocks purchased for December.
CAPCX      60.76
BCICX        43.81
COH           22.88
HAL           13.31
BP              33.89
X                  9.65
COP           25.35
Total.        209.35

For purchases, I bought $300 of NYMT which has a crazy dividend yield of 17%.  It's a bit risky but I'm comfortable with that.  I also added $500 into our mutual funds.

One of my goals for 2016 is to earn $2000 in dividends in our taxable investments so I will be keeping track of it.  I like dividend stocks but I'm also willing to buy non-dividend stocks.  I knew that X (US Steel) didn't have the best dividends when I bought it but I'm hoping that the stock price increases.  I will really need to add to my account to get to the $2000 mark but I like a good challenge.

Friday, January 1, 2016

2016 Goals

Financial:

  1. Max out my Roth IRA for 2015, $5500
  2. Max out my 401k, $18,000
  3. Make $2000 in dividends from my brokerage investments, not including any retirement funds
  4. Save $50,000 total in 2016, not including automatic contributions for retirement
  5. Increase retirement to $210,000
  6. Max out Roth IRA's for Y and myself for 2016
  7. Pay $1110 to mortgage every month
  8. Increase car fund to $6000
Personal:

  1. Plant an apple tree
  2. Plant 2 other berry trees/shrubs
  3. Finish basement or patio
  4. Run a 5k 3 times
  5. Plan vacation for 2017
  6. Stay smoke free
  7. Do more activities with the kids

Happy New Year!!