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2009 Update

May 29th, 2009 at 07:31 am

Out of curiosity, I whipped up a Quicken report to see how our spending was compared to last year. Mostly because I feel like we have been spending a lot of money lately!

I guess I see the big picture now (which it is definitely good to look at and appreciate). The year has definitely been good. & the numbers show why.

Income is up $6500 over last January through May.

Most of it is salary/bonus.

Extra $500 in Ebay income, over last year. (Interestingly, this really dried up in May so no May income in this area. The economy is changing here - not so many deals on games, etc. Maybe people are realizing they can sell their own stuff on ebay instead of giving it away for pennies???).

Plus an unexpected $1k.

Expenses on the other hand, were the same as last year - no change.

Of note, we have only used half the auto fuel that we did this time last year. (Largely attributed to less driving with no more preschool in the boonies).

We've been more charitable, which surprised me. Ah, 100% to the school. That explains things.

$2500 less in childcare, with BM DONE and with LM going far less this year. (We are on a waiting list for more hours, but it is still closer and cheaper).

We've definitely been eating out more - which has been our splurge lately. & a nice one to have.

We've saved about $1k on our mortgage payment (with the refi), but spent about $1k more on "stuff." Actually, stuff and outings. Includes Little League, bowling, replacing kitchen items, GPS, tent, etc., etc.

Most every other category was about the same as last year.

Total spending for year, thus far, $25k. Right on target. Absolute spending limit is $5k per month (average). We try (have always tried) to limit our annual expenses to $50k. But medical adds $10k to the mix.

According to Quicken, I have $10k to spare ($10k income over expenses). Which is precisely how much has gone into our savings and IRAs this year.

So yes, I felt like we were splurging more, but saving even more. Yes, and yes.

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In other news, MIL is completely driving me nuts. I told her about the airfare (I'm ready to BUY) and she tells me she is not sure if they are going or not.

Gah! Seriously? All that pressure, just for a "Oh, it's very up in the air. Will decide in July."

We will see... I am super glad I bowed out though. I don't do well with "spontaneous."

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BM was invited to a birthday party in July. So he said. I thought, holy cow, we better get on the ball (July birthdays for the kids).

It turns out, when we got the invitation, it was a JUNE party. LOL. But it served its purpose to kick my butt in gear.

Dh and BM wanted to invite his whole class. & this is doable if we get invitations out before school is out.

I am not so thrilled with this idea, but frankly, who is going to come anyway? (I could be so wrong, huh...). So, whatever.

Well, let's start at the beginning. Great Grandma gave the kids $20 to spend. They were all set to go out and SPEND it. Okay, it's a gift. No issues with that. But it still felt really wrong all the same to go spend money to spend money. We were just about to go out to Target when I finally asked the kids if they would rather go buy toys, or treat us to Chuck E Cheese? They chose Chuck E Cheese. Grandma often gives them cash with a Chuck E Cheese Coupon, so I thought it was a nice compromise. They certainly don't need more toys. (99% of them bought by dh's side of the family in the first place).

So we were at Chuck E Cheese discussing the birthday situation when we decided to have the party there. The place is hell on a weekend, but quite nice on a week night. So we can do the party on his actual birthday.

Later I was perusing their website for party packages. Seriously, $13/kid. For just about NOTHING. $5 in tokens, and some pizza/soda. Who pays for this stuff? There were perks like balloons, tickets, and toys, but eh. Not much of a deal.

Instead, we can show up and have the party there, regardless. We can buy tokens for the kids ($5/pop, sure). We can bring in some balloons from the party shop next door (not even necessary) and bring our own cake, which we'd have to otherwise (or pay extra for). We can order some pizzas/drinks. They don't cost that much.

I loathe party favors. I am happy to skip them since the kids will probably buy crappy toys with their tickets. Win-win.

In the grand scheme of things, this will be an easy party. I am pleased with the idea.

I'd be happy to skip the family/home party. But I am not sure dh's family will be so accommodating. We will see. The thing about that is dh usually does most the work anyway. If they must have a party, he can deal with it. Wink

Dh did talk about doing something in San Jose actually - since our entire family is there. Now he is thinking. But in the grand scheme of things I don't quite *get* why we owe the grown ups a party. Wink

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