Friday, February 5, 2016

Monthly Spending in January 2016

Net Worth Change from Previous Month: -3.7%
Total Spent: $5,797 (or $347 monthly expenses)

I tried to get back on track with spending again this month (in honor of the New Year, maybe), and it semi-worked. I say semi-worked because I actually spent nearly $7,000, which, not great. But, $4,500 of that was for taxes, and was just waiting patiently in my tax savings account for me and $950 of that was for buying a plane ticket and then paying it off with credit card points. For my regular, non-saved for expenses, I used $150 in cash and gift cards from Christmas to live on for the first two weeks of the month, and then the second two weeks I ended up spending $197. So, I was technically $47 over budget for the month, but not that's not terrible, and most of that $47 was on gifts. I can't help myself, it seems, with gifts. Some other things I bought: a needlepoint pillow with a bunny on it and a Vera Bradley duffle bag from eBay, a Groupon to go to the Russian & Turkish Bath Houses. A few lunches out, but nothing too crazy, thanks to a lunch share with Cat every other week.

More freelance checks came in this month, which was fantastic. I've put some of that money aside for taxes and the rest of it went into my emergency fund, which I'm happy to say is 74% full. Next month, I may slow up on the emergency fund and put a little more into an account for when we get a dog. We'll have to see. I'm pretty sure next month will be a little lower in income, as this project starts to end. I feel really lucky and honored to have had the chance to work on it. I've learned a lot, and paying for a trip to India and getting 3/4 of the way to an emergency fund is nothing to sniff at.

For February, I'll take out $75 each week again, since I think that was a big part of my success this month. A few costs I'm anticipating: travel costs to Philadelphia for a wedding and to Albany for a baby shower, new contact lenses, and vaccines and malaria pills for India. Those last two I'm going to pull out of the money I have saved for travel (because I only really use contact lenses when I travel). The travel expenses and cost of gifts for those other two I'm going to do my best to pull out of the $75 I give myself each week. I've already bought gifts for the baby shower (see above) and I think if I scrimp a bit on lunches out, I should be okay to give a decent gift at the wedding, too.

How's your budget going? Did you meet any exciting goals this month?


  1. YOU ARE SO GOOD. So good!
    January was weird for us- we had a weekend in San Fran (hooray!) I sent off all of my grad applications (Application fees!) and Luke had his annual conference at the swankiest of hotels in all of swankdom and $13 drinks. In total we were able to save about $1600, which was OK, but this month we really need to push it to over $2k (even though we just bought tickets to NYC and need to get an airbnb). Oh hey, we'll be in NYC for spring break (last week of March)- I'll text you!

    1. Oh, I can't wait to see you again! And yeah, some months cost more than others. February, it turns out, is probably going to be a little more than I expected, because I forgot about vaccines and *apparently* need to get a rush passport... ooops.

      And oh my god, application fees! I'm really lucky I'm just applying to the one school, but it's crazy. I'm actually working on an article about how much it costs to apply, so I'll probably pick your brain about it soon.

      But $1600 with all of that is huge! Nice work!