Spending, Life, Income and Food Updates… 1/3/2012

Here are some pictures that I took recently.  An awesome French Bulldog thing from Urban Outfitters, food, Christmas, some presents and more food. It’s not fun having a full five day work week this week. And the week is hardly even over, not used to this! Anyways, here are my updates:

Extra Monthly Income: It’s a little depressing that the holidays are over, because now the BF’s job will be slow again. So he won’t be making all of that overtime, but that’s ok! We will think of other ways to bring in extra money.

  • Due to all of the extra income, we were able to save around $7,000 in December. I threw a bigger payment towards my debt as well. I plan on doing an updated net worth update post soon, stay updated! I think I’ve only done one of those since I started this blog, the numbers just kind of scare me, so much debt!

Volunteer work: Volunteering starts on January 7th. I have training for 3 days in a row I think. This will be interesting and something new for me. I’m excited, but I’m a little nervous. I’ve only ever had two jobs (including the one that I have now) in my whole life, so I’m nervous for meeting new people and screwing things up.

Budget Cutting: We cut out budget by a little, but it’s the little things that add up :)

  • We got our car insurance renewal papers, insurance went down $11 per month! Not a ton, but our insurance is super low already.
  • We’ve kept the heat lower than what we usually do (around 72 degrees) and have saved a significant amount over last year. It also helps that it has been super nice out this past week (around 60 degrees). I can’t remember what our last heat bill was, but it was around $60 or $70 I think. Last year at this time, it was around $150, which is amazing!

Food: I actually cooked a decent amount last week. It was pretty nice! The food was good (of course, since I’m cooking it! ha). I want to start menu planning soon also. Not sure though, usually I’m not in the mood for something that I thought about earlier, I’m weird like that.

  • Be sure to check out Jenn @ Bliss to Bean’s giveaway! This will definitely help me with my cooking if I won.

Shopping: We definitely came in under our Christmas budget, and all of our other budgets for the month. Did some last minute shopping on New Years Eve, and found really great prices on a lot of things. We were very happy about this. Tons of toys were half off and of course all of the Christmas stuff was too, which was nice since one of our Christmas dinners was on New Years Day.

  • However, I’m a little ashamed to say how much we spent, as our Christmas budget is very high. If this gives you any idea, the BF got two pretty nice guns for his present (which is sorta mixed in with his birthday present as well, since his birthday is a month away). Anyways, we used the month of December as our excuse to splurge a little more, as we both tend to have way higher incomes in this month.

$100 Ticket: Still need to pay this. I think I have a couple more days to pay it. I plan on paying it today online.

Vacation planning: We haven’t really thought about this a ton. Hopefully soon. We’re thinking Puerto Rico again. We get really cheap plane tickets (as talked about here), so we can pretty much plan until the last very last second. Our budget is probably going to be around $1,000 for the vacation (food, hotel, airfare, miscellaneous). Since we usually book things so late, there are usually great deals everywhere, so it’s a win win.

  • We want passports though for our vacation after this first one. Hopefully soon we will get on that.

Buying my own Domain: This is a big question that I have right now. How much does this usually cost? Is there a preferred provider for this?

How’s everything going for you? 

Comments

  1. Jenn :D says

    Thanks girlie!! The good thing about making a menu, is you'll have all the stuff on hand, so if you wanna switch days, you'll still have the food on hand. Check godaddy.com usually domains are like $15 a year, give or take. Good luck on my giveaway! Thanks for posting.

  2. Live Simply- Live We says

    You guys killed it! Saving 7k is a ton! We have been trying to get our bills down as well, so way to go. Can't wait to hear about a vacay!

  3. Holly says

    You can purchase a domain for your blog right through Blogger.com, although I think it is a Google service. It costs $10. Love this post! This year we definitely have to work on saving. There are so many projects that we want to do to the house and the only way we can do so is by saving!

  4. Digger says

    You're doing a great job even with the Holidays!!! That's great! Financial planning is a big point on our Family Resolution list. Gotta get out of debt!! lol just like the rest of the world I'm sure. Thanks for the comment on my blog. I always appreciate it!!All The Love In The UniverseDigger

  5. McVal says

    Good for you guys to save that much money and cut down on your monthly expenses! We switched insurances and got a good bonus at the end of the year. Hope to pay down and off some bills this week with it.

  6. Rachel says

    Wow good for you for being under on the Christmas budget, that is awesome! My husband went to Puerto Rico on a fam vacay a few years ago (before we were married) and he STILL talks about how it was the best time ever. I want to go so badly! Happy New year! -Rachel (for the birds)

  7. shoppingtosaving says

    Good job and I am praying for your BF's grandma. I just saw mine (she's 88) this past Christmas and it pains me to see how hard it is for her to keep walking, etc.I'm also trying to cook more this year. I also would like to menu plan but I feel like it would be too boring for people to read about it. I may do it though just to get myself on track.

  8. Stephanie says

    SO jealous of your December savings!!! Great job! I'm pretty excited to see how things go for us financially in 2012. I just set up our budget, but I think our monthly income will end up being a bit higher than projected since it looks like my husband will be making more than usual, at least during the first half of the year, plus I might be getting extra hours at the library. Combine that with the fact that we managed to lower some of our expenses (and will likely see a decrease in our property taxes during the second half of the year) and we should be able to increase our savings rate and/or pay down student loans faster! Yay!

  9. Serendipity says

    Awesome savings for December! (Which is usually a costly month for a lot of people. And hugs! I know what its like to lose a parent and have another one who I have difficulties with so if you ever want to talk, please email me. Feel better. And remember, its not you.

  10. Tabitha Lynn says

    I'm sorry you arent talking to your mom, hopefully it's your choice and not hers. Mother/daughter relationships are always tough, I hardly ever talk to mine and she lives only a mile away. Um how did you save 7k in a month, I always try to spend less and fail. Tips please

  11. Michelle P says

    Thanks everyone! I hope everyone has a great January!And it was easy to save $7K, mainly because my Christmas bonus was around that amount. So I guess I cheated :)

  12. Anonymous says

    I like this post. It gives me encouragement. Writing out menus really helps save time and money. As someone else here said, you can always switch around the days. Having a plan is what I need to stay home and cook instead of wasting money at some sub par restaurant.Anna

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