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Small Fun Goals Update

March 31st, 2015 at 11:19 am

I had previously saved $800 for some event tickets using money only earned for extra like surveys, turk, rebates etc.

Since then I have added $315 for another event and $600 of $1500 for another event Sept 1.

I have gotten $50 in restaurant gift cards and $60 in Amazon gift cards for surveys.

It amazes me how much extra cash can be made for a little extra time without actual $ from employment.


January 7th, 2015 at 08:24 am

Took all of two minutes but it is done! I maxed both IRA's for 2015 yesterday Smile

Almost done with 2014!

December 21st, 2014 at 11:04 am

Reviewing YNAB for 2014 I am pretty pleased! There are a few areas to work on but overall we did very well. We bounced up our savings rate, did more for charity, still have no debt and had a lot of fun. I cant wait to see what 2015 brings!

Small things

December 17th, 2014 at 08:04 am

First there are a few small things we need to get under control.
~ We ate out too much in November. I was ridiculously busy.

~ We got notice of a big cable and internet increase

~ I did too much charity Christmas shopping. About $250 more than we planned.

* set a hard limit for eating out of $75 a month. Have a list of very easy last minute meals.

* I have researched the rates of satellite so I am prepared to negotiate with the cable company again. I also did this a year ago. They are the only choice for cable internet here. I plan to do this Monday.

* I enjoyed every bit of the charity shopping so no changes needed there!


We will be doing the FAFSA again in Jan which I expect will be again be the same as last year. A small amount of unsubsidized loans we thankfully didnt need.

There will be a small change in costs associated with one childs college beginning next fall but the other child also starts. Though he is now on his own I am expecting besides tuition he may need a little more help from us. Any savings from one child will likely go to the other.

My spouse will be getting a small !% raise. We will be bumping up the 401K 1%

I've got our $11,000 ready for the 2015 IRA's from cash reserves.

I need to get back to tracking all my extras earned!!! I'd like to do all of 2015.

Oh my goodness!

October 22nd, 2014 at 07:17 am

I knew it had been a bad month for Murphy visiting. I just didn't know how bad until I started working on this month final financial totals. Yowsa!

Lets start with over $700 in vet bills just last week! Lets add on another issue that cost $1700 This week! EEEK!!!

A nice big car repair also hit this month~ Blah!

I also need to throw winter storage for the RV in for Nov. budget. Good rate at $10 a foor for the whole winter.

I am very much hoping to spend no more money the rest of the month besides a few $'s for milk and bread!

These expenses bite but I am just thankful we are prepared!

Kiddo is having a dilemma about his major. He has no electives and all classes for his major and 17 credits of classes being taken. He is finding it very boring and thinks he wants to change even though I am told the classes are easy. Anything to do with engineering being easy baffles my brain.

He is seeing someone about this next week. He had to go out of the area for engineering and live on campus. The program he thinks he wants to change to is available at the college in town. I will say if kiddo does decide to change majors and go local next year it will save us a ton of $. Really I just want him to pick something he will be happy with.

I need to remember to pick up a case of beer for someone that came and helped me out this week )

Small fun goals

October 7th, 2014 at 02:15 pm

I am almost to my small goal of $800 wanted for some event tickets I'll be buying in Feb. All the money has come from surveys, rebates and extras. None from actual wages. I should have it finished up by Friday I believe.

It has really amazed me how fast this came together once I set my mind to earning a little extra through sources other than our paid jobs.

I will still keep saving these extras once the original goal is met. I'm just not sure if it will be towards a getaway this winter or if it will start the saving pot for Europe.

I ended up saving and extra $600 out of our general budget last month without reducing anything going into savings or investments. I'd love to tell you I saved it or put it towards the winter trip. We spent it all on a new pet and supplies. We are very happy with our decision Smile

Having a fun debate!

October 1st, 2014 at 07:04 am

Last week dh and I had discussed not missing our winter cruise this year. We had previously planned to skip it and started wavering. We had decided if I could pull the money out of the budget and from the little extras I earn that we would go.

We were debating if we would rather have a cruise every year or save up for a few weeks in Europe three years down the line. Decisions decisions. We decided once I finish the funding for the tickets I am currently saving for from my extras earned that we will just keep saving. We will need to decide by the end of Dec of we want a cruise in Feb or March so hubby can request vacation.

As we decide I will just throw what I can in a general fund.

No is a good word to help hit our goals :)

September 29th, 2014 at 05:38 am

I had already tallied up Septembers spending so I sure didn't want to change it! Someone wanted fast food over the weekend. Nope. We have plenty to eat in the house. You just have to cook it!

We have been being pretty lax in that department. I hate telling the kids no as much as I hate cooking sometimes. However we don't hit our goals without a plan!

Sometimes the day to day frugal stuff is just plain old boring you know! A packed lunch on our weekend fishing trip is just not as exciting as stopping at some eclectic hole in the wall diner but we did it anyway! Cooking after a long day plain old sucks sometimes but we did it anyway. I am the one that struggles the most in this area as I do the majority of the cooking. Some more self-discipline is good for the wallet and the size of my tush Smile

Sept. spending and earned extras

September 26th, 2014 at 05:22 pm

We are done and tallied up already for the month. This is Spending and little extras I earned. This does not include investments, charity or sinking funds.

I decided I wanted to track the extras I earned as they add up.

~ Tuition $8912.37

~ cable and internet 97.93

~ electric and nat. gas~$166

~kids netflix at school $8.43

~ cellular $71.30

~ RV repair $65.00

~ groceries $430

~ dining out/ entertaining / booze $200

~pets $69.86

~ yard $5.17

~ grooming $45.04

~ books $43.28

~ kids extras $62

~ home decor $20

~ auto/ boat/camper ins $860 ( 6 months)

~ Gift $275

~hunt/fish $52

~ clothing $10.55

~medical ~ $61.62

~gas $164.6

~ auto repair $325

~ dh spending $60

~~~~~~ EXTRAS EARNED~~~~~~~~~~~
$3.57 Menards rebate
$221.81 surveys-etc.
$50.00 had Discover rewards deposited
$10.00 Target gift card
$18.00 Amazon cards
$0.20 Savings catcher
$2.50 Checkout 51

401K raise and a challenge for us to take on!

September 22nd, 2014 at 01:14 pm

We bumped the 401k up another %. It is currently at 21% after the bump. We will bump it back up in January to reflect dh's raise %. We are leaving the company stock we purchase on the side at the same $10 a week. We did debate stopping this.

Dh and I were discussing how we decided to forgo a vacation this winter. We put what we already had saved into investmants when we decided not to take one. Upon further reflection we decided no vacation stinks!!!! We would both like to do another cruise.

I am already saving my survey and money from little extras like that for a festival next summer. That is budgeted at $800 for tickets and camping. You can purchase the tickets in the spring for the best camping sites. We generally do this with family and it is a yearly thing. My savings for that is at $544.85. I have $255.15 to go! This has all been from side money from little things.

Keep in mind I do all the budgeting , investing and bill paying. Dh does most of the money making. Dh and I decided if I can find the cash by reducing expenses or the extras I make from that we sure can go! No money can come from regular paychecks, savings, cash already saved or by cutting investing. I do some extra work if I can fine something that works around my PT job and my health issues. That is the tough one. I cant do a lot of sitting, standing and lifting. Any extra take home from dh is only available to this goal if it is over a certain amount. The rest is earmarked for other goals. So I am going to give it one heck of a good try and I love our every winter vacation!!!

I will have to be far enough to see we will be able to do this my the end of December. That is when my spouse has to submit his vacation requests. He is high man on the list so he gets first dibs but cant procrastinate as the rest of the crew is waiting to submit in order of seniority.

I am a pleasure seeking critter and find this much more fun than looking for ways to save $ just to save for the long-term. I know it should be the other way but alas, it is not!

I think this should be fun! A list of things I can cut or do to save $.

~cut out all dining out ( my fault most of the time as I get sick of cooking!)

~ cut out the weekly bottle of wine ( UGH!!!!)

~ cut the grocery bill

~ when our contract is up in Jan see if satellite is a better deal than bundling basic cable and internet. We have only 1 internet provider. I know dh is not want to cut the basic tv and I'm OK with that if it makes him happy.I know he would cut it if I pushed it but nope.

~ burn wood when I am home

~ keep the furnace at 67 day and 62 night

~ sell a few extras

~ The electric bill with drop a bit as the ponds get shut off for the winter.

~be the electric police

~ try again to do the bigger dogs nails instead of paying every 4 weeks. I can do it on one dog but not the other.

~ stop eating too much myself

~ quit the pool on the games at work.

~ take showers instead of a long soak in the jet tub. ( I love that deep tub!)

I am going to be very honest and say I do not see enough fat in our budget to accomplish this but they say " where there is a will there is a way!" So I will do the best I can. I do so love a FUN challenge! Wish us luck!!

A few deals:)

September 22nd, 2014 at 12:03 pm

I found a few deals to add to my Amazon Subscribe and save.

My next order will be:

~ 90 pack Finish Powerball dish washing detergent~ $11.79
~ Quilted Northern 48 pack ~ $20.35
~Sensodyne ~ $4.20
~ Nylabone Edible ~ $4.69
~ Tilex Tile and Grout Pen~ $2.58

I hit Target today:

~ 12 pack cat food. $4.45 was less expensive to buy two 12 packs than 1 24 pack. I would have bought two but they only had 1 left!
~ 3 Sensodyne at $4.99 each. ( Before Cartwheel)
~2 cans chicken soup at 1.27 each. ( Before Cartwheel)

I got $2.25 off my bill for using Cartwheel and got a $5.00 Target giftcard with the 3 Sensodyne.

Hubby will be good on Sensodyne for a good long wile but we might as well stock up when stuff is a good price!!!

Hi there and a little history :)

September 17th, 2014 at 02:27 pm

We have been doing some things right for a while and some things wrong. So I go from here trying to make a good retirement plan. We started getting serious about this retirement thing kind of late in life!

~ We still expect to pay another $37,000 for the child in college.

~ Tech training is all paid now for our other child lives at home so some savings there!

~ We expect to earn $61,000 -$63,000 this year

~ We no debt so that is a big plus!!

~ My spouse is contributing 20% to his plan at work.

~ I maxed out both our IRA's with $ that was in cash.

_ If hubby stays at the current job the next 13 years he should have a pension of $2,200. However we know things can change. Fingers crossed! Too much of retirement working out hinges on this.

According to the calc I used we should be more than on track with the pension and social security. I just don't have full faith where these are concerned.

I'm going to include a snip of our financials:

Some of what shows as cash is the $37,000 earmarked for the kiddo finishing college and the emergency fund.

My goal is to keep converting over time amounts that are in cash into investments. This goes slowly, as my spouse is comfortable with it. I'm not pushing much.

Our income is lower than it used to be and saving much besides what is going into investments is a BIG challenge now. I am going to be doing by best too reduce expenses so I can comfortably bump up the 401K % a bit more. That is game plan 1!

In all likely hood this may be a very boring blog Smile