By: Revanche

Net Worth, Money & Life News: September 2015

October 2, 2015

DollarSign

Change from Jan 2015:  15.2% increase
0.5% decrease from last month

ON MONEY

I use Swagbucks. Here’s a handy tutorial if you’d like to join and earn. And any purchases you make going through my Amazon links keep the blog lights on!

Spending

Last we checked, I was dreading phone replacement. Dragged my feet, in fact, even though the phones were being outrageously non functional: turning off randomly, refusing to turn back on, “the camera is not connected” messages. Neither of us wanted phablets, which is where all the newer smartphones today are headed, and we definitely didn’t want the $1000+ bill that comes with two new phones. But it seemed like the best we could do was a certified used phone for about 20% less and any used electronics from an unknown seller always makes me nervous.

During our intense research period, PiC was gifted a new to him used phone, and that was a huge relief. I bought him a new case and charging cords, he did SIM card surgery, and he’s set! I deleted a bunch of apps and data from my phone and that’s helped a little bit so that I don’t have to rush out and replace it with something expensive. We were looking at the Samsung Galaxy 6 but it’s huge and so’s the price tag.

*keeps phone on life support*

***

Big credit card bills from the summer are still coming home to roost. I got semi-panicky about it solely  because I hate pulling from savings even if we have the money and it won’t cause hardship. It’s the principle!  I know one big one-time expense will absolutely require a transfer out of savings. Meanwhile, I’m calling cash in from all quarters back to the home joint account: Paypal balances from cashback sites, reimbursements, FSA claims.

***
We’re doing water time together and PiC was the only one properly equipped. That meant buying my first new swimsuits in ten years. I couldn’t remember what normal prices were but was reassured ~$150 wasn’t bad for five pieces. Last summer I finally threw out suits so old (circa 1998) the elastic had disintegrated. Here’s to the next decade in new swimsuits for water therapy!

LB swim diapers: $10.
LB swimsuit: $19
Swimsuits for me: $140 (3 tops, 2 bottoms)

***

Looking ahead to holiday travel: EUCH. (no, I’m not ready for a frugal Christmas yet!) We brought the projected costs way down for the extended family by changing the plans a bit but couldn’t save ourselves. We’re looking at an outrageous sum for transportation, mostly with the rental car, and there aren’t a lot of great ways to defray a rental. I’m good at earning hotel points and airline miles but if anyone has any secrets for car rentals, I’d be happy to hear them!

Can we opt out of gifting this year? sighs Scrooge-Revanche.

Saving

We’re currently banking 45% of my salary and about 40% of PiC’s salary. This goes toward long term savings, investments, paying down the mortgage, and saving for LB’s future spending needs. Part of that savings is anticipating hir childcare costs which will kick in at some point, so it’s really saving to spend or adjusting our cash flow expectations.

The saving for LB’s childcare was painless for the first several months as we didn’t do much but buy diapers and feed ourselves, but then we started feeling the squeeze as we started doing things and paying for larger annual expenses. It’ll go back to being relatively painless after we get past this lump, as we adjust our spending again and find other funding for travel (miles! points! miles!).

ON LIFE

I used to love motorcycles until I got old and crochety. Now when they rumble, roar, and backfire by at all hours, day and night, I silently hope they get flat tires when they get home.

Maybe not always silently.

***

I like airports. But when it’s been too long between visits, I feel like a newly minted adult all over again when I make it out in one piece.

I had occasion to travel through LAX this month and the TSA agent was conversational and friendly. I was so thrown that I didn’t know what to do after he’d completed our transaction so stood transfixed, confused. After he failed to wave me through or bark at me for holding up the line, I shook myself and pushed myself to move on with sheer force of “wow how much more awkward do you want this to get?”

***

Had my first Mommy Day a la Save.Spend.Splurge. Bit of a misnomer since it was the day I shed my Mom mantle and spent 24 hours as a human not momming). It was a bit nerve wracking, not because of leaving LB with PiC, but because I wasn’t sure my body was ready to handle a solo jaunt. August and September were pretty crappy between my cold that lasted for what felt like forever which always triggers pain, and regular pain. With congestion in the mix, “a day out” sounded a lot like “painting a huge target on my back in a general invitation to karma to kick me”.

24 hours of respite were awesome. I had dinner with a friend, generally relaxed, and ate. And ate. And ate. Eating and sleeping were my only goals and that’s what we did. This needs to happen a little more often.

***

Seamus and LB seem to have stopped conspiring to kill me with their farts. YAY.

***

Had a birthday this month. Older now. Feels ok? I’m pretty sure I stopped feeling any particular age about 7 years ago. Anyone else?

Since PiC insisted on doing something, we had a nice dinner. LB is doing really well at these outings. Ze didn’t get a high chair so hung out on our laps and next to us and had a good time doing it. Ze would climb up and peer over the back of the seat occasionally, chirping but generally just being a pleasant little human which was like a birthday gift. Not that ze is prone to meltdowns. Even a stranger came up to our table to tell us ze was wonderful. But I’m always prepared to have to pay and leave if ze does turn into a beastly beast. So that was a nice outing.

15 Responses to “Net Worth, Money & Life News: September 2015”

  1. Leigh says:

    The Samsung Galaxy S6 is a really nice phone, but it’s way bigger than I want in a phone… I actually bought it in August and then returned it in September and bought an iPhone 6S, which I am really enjoying!
    Leigh recently posted…Reader SurveyMy Profile

    • Revanche says:

      Ooh that’s good to know! I know the iPhone 6 is closer in size to my comfort level but wasn’t ready to switch back to iOS yet.

  2. I’m so glad I found your blog via Twitter! What a busy month. Glad you survived swimsuit shopping (ick…even if it is only online). Hooray for keeping your phone going. As for the phablets, I was against them until I found myself squinting a ridiculous amount lately. It might be time to go the way of the phablet for me…or you know, get my eyes checked.
    Penny @ She Picks Up Pennies recently posted…Simple Switches: Easy Bathroom OrganizationMy Profile

    • Revanche says:

      thanks and welcome! Hah between getting a new phone or new glasses, it may be a tie as to the more expensive option. Though, getting your eyes checked would be better for your health. 🙂

  3. Thanks for the mention! Seems like a full bit of life you’re describing there. Happy belated birthday. I don’t really notice a difference with the age thing anymore. I suspect that, for the whole of each decade, I’ll keep thinking I’m in the first year. IE, I still think of myself as about 30 at age 37. So 40s and 50s will probably be about the same. Meh.

    I only foresee age bothering me (short-term, anyway) if we go see some standup by a couple YouTube folks we like. The last time we did something similar, we weren’t prepared for the fact that most YouTube fans are in their 20s. Mainly early 20s. Or less. I had just turned 35 and heard someone say how weird it was going to be that he was turning 20. Eesh.
    Abigail @ipickuppennies recently posted…Are you ready for a frugal Christmas?My Profile

    • Revanche says:

      You’re welcome!

      It was quite a full month, but I’m not feeling wiped out so it was mostly good. Good reason for me to avoid stand up 😉

  4. 1. I still have my old swimsuit I plan on wearing until it stretches out too 😉

    2. Baby Bun needs a swim diaper too. And an outfit.

    3. YAY MOMMY DAY!!! They’re great. They really are.. To be a great Mommy you need time alone too.

    4. Happy birthday 🙂 I feel better and better as I age. My life only gets better.
    sherry @ save. spend. splurge. recently posted…If you’re good at something, don’t do it for freeMy Profile

  5. SP says:

    Happy Birthday month!

    We are in the same situation on phones. They are limping along, and new phones are expensive and just not a priority. :/

    LOL on the fart situation – glad it is less smelly for you!
    SP recently posted…Why I love my jobMy Profile

  6. Sense says:

    HAPPY HAPPY BIRTHDAY, R!!

    I have to go look up ‘swim diaper’ now. I cannot imagine how that might work. #childfree

  7. Karen says:

    Happy birthday! When my birthday comes around, I’m kinda in disbelief at whatever age I am. I’m not as sprightly as I was but I don’t feel old; just a change in number.

    I’m tempted to get a new phone but shouldn’t spend the money. Especially as I think I might go to Tokyo next month. I feel the same about credit card balances and not wanting to pull from savings.

  8. Kristin says:

    The only way I’ve ever been able to save money on car rentals is booking them together with my flight or using Priceline. But especially if you’re renting from inside a city, they can just be astronomical. When we have to rent one from NYC, we usually go to Newark or at least Hoboken, where it’s usually half the price of renting in Brooklyn. Good luck! (Oh, and happy birthday!)
    Kristin recently posted…Monthly Spending in September 2015My Profile

  9. Linda says:

    Happy birthday month!
    Linda recently posted…More medical funMy Profile

Leave a Reply

CommentLuv badge

This website and its content are copyright of A Gai Shan Life  | © A Gai Shan Life 2017. All rights reserved.

Site design by 801red