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Archive for February, 2021

February Review

February 28th, 2021 at 05:45 pm

It looks like we all have the same idea of posting our monthly reviews on the last day of February.

February was a spendy month. I paid $875 for the painting (expensive I know, but few painters are willing to deal with wallpaper & he ended up having to deal with two layers of wallpaper). It took him 3 days of prep before he could paint. I also purchased a few home items: rugs, trash cans, to improve the look & function of my home. I have a list of future home improvements & will try to get something done every month.

I also purchased more clothes last week than I probably purchased in all of 2020. Several tops on sale or clearance in anticipation of doing some job interviews. I am being optimistic, but they will be good purchases for career or when theatres re-open. (I miss attending shows!) The most expensive top was $16 and the least expensive was $8. I bought 5 tops, not including the 3 that I've already decided to return, but haven't yet picked up. A few of the tops have tie-backs so if I lose weight they will accommodate that.

Spring has come to south Louisiana. We now have highs in the 80's. I put my plant outside yesterday. It was one from my grandfather's funeral. I hope I can keep it alive, but I don't have a great track record with plants.

Last week was a good week if you had any investment purchases, with the market down it was a bit of a deal. I didn't have any of my automated contribution scheduled for last week.

Looking forward to this coming week I have my monthly savings coming out on the first, as well as my main credit card payment. I get paid on the 1st, 5th, 15th, & 19th in March. Investment contributions on the 5th, 15th, & 19th. I am on track to max out my TSP & IRA again this year. 

Net Worth: $1,171,458

Painting Complete

February 25th, 2021 at 12:01 am

The painting is done! I had him come back today & do some touch-ups.  I was a little embarrassed to ask, but when you pay for professional painting you want it to look professional. I was satisfied with the touch-ups.

So that's two projects in two months. Kitchen cabinets in January, the bathroom painting in February. I think next month I'll focus on getting the awning installed. Clearly, I'm not going to be ready to put my home on the market as soon as I thought, but that's okay. I'd rather spread out the costs by month, plus I started physical therapy last week.

I'm paying $75 each visit for the first 4 visits, then the price goes down. I'm seeing a little progress already so that's encouraging. I chose the same physical therapy group that helped me when I was having back issues, so I am optimistic that I will have the same successful resolution.

I have an FSA, but I definitely underestimated my expenses for the year with this physical therapy, injection, and doctor visits. If I deplete my FSA this year I'm going to look at a plan that's eligible for an HSA. I looked at it last year, but I didn't want to lose the money in FSA, which was close to the maximum rollover value. I like the idea of the no rollover limit & being able to use it in retirement with the HSA. This will give me another tax advantaged vehicle to save in. 

Replacing Wood Floors

February 21st, 2021 at 03:35 pm

I feel like I'm just going to keep finding things to replace or repair! I discovered that my wood floors are water damaged near my French doors. I've always heard that any damage means having to replace the entire floors. Is it ever possible to just replace a few planks if you can find a close enough match? Other solution would be cutting out the damaged wood & replacing with tile to coordinate with the gray-red fireplace brick that runs along the wall adjacent to the door. I would just need a few large tiles. I have actually seen where they have tiles near the entrance then the wood floors begin. I guess because of this issue? That door is also exposed with no awning. Maybe I need to get the awning installed before anything else.

In more positive news, the walls are ready for painting tomorrow. There was another layer of wallpaper underneath! I really dislike wallpaper, it seems that people are always being sloppy with installing it. Now I know that there is probably a layer beneath the bathroom downstairs as well. But at least that's another thing accomplished.

Sleeting 🌨⛈🌧

February 15th, 2021 at 02:52 pm

It is sleeting and 25 degrees here this morning. I have canceled both of my appts for today. I am not sure if I will go into work this evening. I am hunkered down & not looking to go anywhere. 

I have read of power outages in other areas. Please stay safe & warm! 

Happy Valentine’s Day! 💝💘

February 14th, 2021 at 09:09 pm

Happy Valentine's Day! Hope you stay warm with your loved ones today. We are expecting a freeze here in south Louisiana in the coming day or so. I have been staying warm inside, doing some laundry & cleaning. Tomorrow is President's Day so I have the day off, other than my initial assessment appointment for physical therapy and a consultation appointment with a painter.

I found a color for my bathroom walls at Sherwin Williams yesterday. It is called Maison Blanche. 

I refreshed my accounts after Friday's market close. My IRA monthly contribution came out early due to the bank holiday.


Net Worth: $1,202,264

Unexpected Pay Day

February 12th, 2021 at 05:21 pm

Unexpected pay day! At one of my jobs I am paid semimonthly: on the 1st & 15th, but I guess because it's a bank holiday on Monday I got paid early. I think, the stock market, may still be trading - at least for part of the day. They usually only close all day on major federal holidays.

This long weekend is actually a triple holiday weekend: Valentine's Day on Sunday, President's Day on Monday, & Mardi Gras on Tuesday! Oh, and then it's Ash Wednesday, of course. I should probably consider giving up sweets for Lent. 

Mint sends me notification of various trends. Apparently I'm on a positive cash flow streak, which is why my checking account has continued to grow. I like to keep at least $5k to avoid paying fees.

I am considering paying my credit cards weekly. I know it doesn't make sense if I just pay them off monthly, but I'm feeling a little anxious after having paid off my credit card debt. I don't want to find myself in the same position again.

Next pay day is on the 19th. I am quickly approaching $1.2 million net worth. 

Net Worth: $1,197,166

So much to do

February 10th, 2021 at 11:33 am

Thinking about everything I need to do to get my home ready to sell can be overwhelming so I'm just taking it in stages. I realize that since I filed my 2020 taxes I probably won't be getting the next stimulus due to increased income. But now that I've paid off my credit card debt, my cash flow has greatly improved. I don't plan on touching my growing savings for any of these projects.

Next step is the removal of wallpaper & painting my upstairs bathroom. I got a quote prior to COVID, but it was only good for 30 days. I wasn't super impressed with him because it took days for him to come out then he didn't give me the advance notice he had mentioned, but not many painters are willing to deal with wallpaper so I need to be flexible.

I also need to replace my downstairs bath surround, have the upstairs closets painted with stain kill for past leaks, carpet cleaned, and repair a leak in one of my upstairs bathroom sinks. I've been bad about keeping up with home improvements. One step at a time...

Any bathroom paint color suggestions? I know neutral & lighter is always recommended by realtors.

Net Worth: $1,192,115

Credit Card Debt Free

February 7th, 2021 at 03:23 pm

Not only have I paid off my credit cards, for a short while I actually had a negative balance as I paid more than my balance. I just did my own Dave Ramsey yell at home.

LivingAlmostLarge had another great survey post. I am resharing my answers below for posterity.

My parents retired with 2 pensions. One for 20 years active duty military. They were able to pay all bills with his military income while earning another pension of 20+ years working with the state. They didn’t need that much money in the bank, but working 20+ years without touching their salaries certainly allowed for it. My mom mostly stayed at home until all of us girls graduated high school.

I don’t envision myself retiring early even though I could. I have enjoyed my career & am looking forward to achieving more. I have the age of 60 in mind, which is still plenty young. I will have 30 years with the federal government so a good pension, SS supplement until age 62, and SS after that if it’s still available. I will probably wait until full SS age to withdraw depending on my health. I should have several million in my own retirement accounts as well. I am on track to be mortgage free many years prior to retirement, but I am planning to sell soon. 

Net Worth: $1,180,104



Thank You

February 3rd, 2021 at 11:26 pm

Thank you so much for your condolences. I truly am touched by your kindness & thoughtfulness.

My evening job has slowed down & I'm perfectly okay with that. I also took off February at my weekend job. I'm ready to scale back. 

Today I sent a full balance payment plus 10% to my credit card. I really want to keep both credit card balances as close to zero as possible from here on out. I'm being very mindful of spending as well. I've noticed that I've been doing a little too much shopping online. I am paying the balance in full with each bill, but after working so hard to pay off $22k in less than a year, I don't want to end up back in the same boat.

My dad officially did my taxes after I ran the numbers through the calculator & it's what I expected. I will owe about $1400 between federal & state. I've been keeping $5k in my checking account so I'll be able to pay it out without pulling from my growing savings. I bumped my savings from $100 to $500 monthly at the first of the year now that my debt has been paid off.