Did anyone else get rained out on Halloween? Although not ideal, I think our neighbors gave my kids some fairly generous candy portions since not many kids were out. Aside from some cheap face paint, we didn’t shell out much money for costumes. We got a witch costume for our youngest daughter at a consignment sale, used dress-up clothes and made a crown for our other daughter, and just used an old cape for our son. We did, however, spend plenty of money in other areas.
The bulk of our earnings come from the ever reliable monthly paycheck from my day job in finance at one of those big evil corporations.
Violin: Amanda collected most of her fall tuition for her violin studio. The remainder should trickle in this month.
CPA/other: I do most of my side work during the first few months of the year, but I do a small amount throughout the year. I didn’t collect anything in October just because I forgot to bill last month, so that’s more that will just be pushed to next month.
401k: I am cruising along on auto pilot, contributing 15% of my gross income to retirement. That’s not quite enough to max out my 401k or to retire early, but you have to work with what you have.
529s: The education contributions are now being deducted from my monthly paycheck, which is really nice because I don’t even have to think about it anymore.
Mortgage $950 (spot on): If I paid property taxes and home insurance along with our mortgage payment, the total payment would be closer to $1,250 per month.
Giving $833 (spot on): We give 10 percent of our income. If you look closely, you’ll notice it’s not an exact 10 percent this month, but that’s because I pay tithing from Amanda’s earnings quarterly. It seems like a lot, but we have many reasons why we give.
Auto $819 ($769 worse): Car expenses were obviously the big driver this month. I went a few months longer without getting my oil changed, and when I finally brought the car in, guess what? I had several “critical safety issues” that needed immediate attention. I asked the shop enough questions and trust them enough to know that they were being straight with me. My car is slowly dying, but I’d rather continue to put in a few hundred dollars here and there than buy a new one.
Doctor $568 ($32 better): I have been putting of paying some off my medical bills for MRIs and CT scans I had done on my foot months ago. I budgeted more this month because I knew I was going to start paying them. I tried to negotiate, but I found that funds applied to your deductible are much harder to negotiate than funds applied to your coinsurance portion. I think we still owe $300 or $400, and I’ll tackle that next month.
Education $360 ($60 worse): We budgeted quite a bit here this month as Amanda decided to finally buy some of the home school curriculum she’s been saving for (Life of Fred
elementary math, and All About Reading, if you’re interested). Then we ended up buying extra resources we’ll need in a few months to take advantage of the free shipping.
Fast Food $102 ($52 worse): As Amanda discussed, we have been spending a little more on convenience food in order to support her pregnancy and our transition into a 1:2 parent-kid ratio.
Air Travel/Hotel $64 ($64 worse): Amanda and I will be on vacation next week in Central America!!! I budgeted most of our expenses for this month but had to make some down payments in advance.
Phone $24 (spot on): After 10 years of living in the cellular dark ages, I finally decided to get a smart phone. We have so far been happy with Republic Wireless, and you can read my Republic Wireless review here.
My Featured Bare Budget Series
I am excited to have begun featuring the budgets of people and other bloggers who are in all different stages of life! I know there are people out there as curious (or nosy) as I am who enjoy getting a deeper glimpse into the financial lives of normal people.
If you are one of them, consider pitching in by posting yours!
Check out my 30-second overview video that cost me $26 to see what it’s all about.
Here are just a few of the budgets posted this month:
Below is a sample of people who posted their budgets along with questions regarding their financial situations. My goal is to get as many as people as possible to submit in order to create a database that is sortable by income level, family size, location, etc.
Shocked To Be OK – A couple in their 60s in Ralegh, NC. They weren’t financially perfect raising their family but tried to live frugally, and now they’re doing all right for themselves.
Jon – 25 years old in Arizona looking for suggestions on what he should be doing now to prepare for retirement.
rochellew88 – 27 years old from the beautiful state of Michigan! She earns $75K per year and is trying to knock out $23K of student loans. Check out her financial situation, and let her know if you have any ideas to help her get rid of her debt asap.
YoungMoney – 24 years old in DC and looking to balance investing and saving for a down payment on a house.
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How was your October? Do you have many Halloween expenses?