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            [0] => 117.217.203.107
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    [275] => Array
        (
            [0] => 122.180.168.39
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)
Viewing the 'Spending stuff' Category: Firefly's Personal Finance Blog
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IRA Contributions & Budget

January 6th, 2020 at 08:07 pm

I forgot to turn off my automatic contributions to my IRA, so I sent my first contribution for 2020 even though I still haven’t fully funded 2019. Whoops. Needless to say, I turned off the automatic funding. I will finish paying my mom back for the AC loan this month & should have the funds to max my 2019 IRA by April 15.

I have decided that 2020 will be the year I learn to live on budget. Honestly, I never tried before. Just spent as I pleased & my credit card debt reflects that. I want to start this decade off being mindful with spending money.

2020 Goals

December 29th, 2019 at 03:17 pm

2020 Goals are much the same as my recurring goals:

Max out TSP ($750 per paycheck): $19.5k

Max out Roth IRA ($500 monthly): $6k

Pay off TSP loan ($250 per paycheck with a projected payoff date of August 2020): $4k

Pay down CC debt: at least $5k

Pay down auto loan ($150 per paycheck with a projected payoff date of July 2021): $3.9k

Payoff of my auto loan will coincide with the 5 year anniversary at my PRN job. I will reevaluate whether I want to continue working that job at that time. I still want additional income but may take that opportunity to switch to an work from home income stream. If I can do it earlier that will be even better.

I added a Clever Fox 🦊 budget planner to my Amazon cart. I am so bad at budgeting. Honestly, my budget is nonexistent. Maybe this new decade I will change that. I think I will have to be more conscious of my spending to meet the goals I have set in 2020.

Christmas Vacation

December 20th, 2019 at 03:32 pm

My Christmas vacation has started a day early. Since Trump declared Christmas Eve a holiday I had an additional day of use or lose leave to use before the end of the year. So I’m off today & procrastinating on getting to the gym. Yesterday after work I did a little shopping for myself & returned a purchase. Then I came home & did some laundry and started prepping my guest room for my sister. My family arrives Monday. Gifts are all wrapped. I only have a gift card to buy for my brother-in-law. I will get that on Christmas Eve on our usual trip to the mall.

It looks like federal employees will get a 3.1% raise next year. Not bad at all. Four years of pay freezes hurt, but I know that the entire country was hurting at the time.

2019 has been a good year & I’m looking forward to 2020. A year from now I’ll be even further along my plan for financial independence.

A pic of my shopping finds attached so you understand how much I love sparkle. ❇️ 💖🤩


Christmas Shopping

December 17th, 2019 at 03:55 pm

How is your Christmas shopping coming? I think I’ve mentioned before that I shop throughout the year. Kids I shop for at Christmas time. They grow so fast & change so much that I can’t buy for the littles in advance. I am done with the adult shopping & actually have a surplus for next year as is my usual. I need to not buy throughout this year...if I can help it.

Rumors are that bonuses won’t arrive until the new year. Not the best time of year, but it’s happened before. I’m thankful for anything.

I joined some FIRE groups on FB this week, with an emphasis on the FI. I’m interested in maximizing my income & am looking into some WFH opportunities.

Christmas Shopping

December 15th, 2019 at 05:29 pm

How is your Christmas shopping coming? I think I’ve mentioned before that I shop throughout the year. Kids I shop for at Christmas time. They grow so fast & change so much that I can’t buy for the littles in advance. I am done with the adult shopping & actually have a surplus for next year as is my usual. I need to not buy throughout this year...if I can help it.

Rumors are that bonuses won’t arrive until the new year. Not the best time of year, but it’s happened before. I’m thankful for anything.

I joined some FIRE groups on FB this week, with an emphasis on the FI. I’m interested in maximizing my income & am looking into some WFH opportunities.

Natural Disaster Overload

September 10th, 2017 at 10:15 pm

It seems that our country if experiencing a natural disaster overload, or fatigue. They seem to be nonstop & devastating. I pray that you are all well and not suffering the ill effects of the hurricanes, floodings, and wildfires ravaging our country at the moment. I am happy that my area was spared after the devastating floods last year.

My retirement accounts did bounce back to $600k and even exceeded that amount. That was nice to see. I am looking forward to meeting with my Bogleheads group next month & discussing the recent market moves.

I am going to order A Random Walk Down Wall Street to read. It seems to be a popular book among investors & my group. I also plan to order some travel books for my upcoming trips to London & Edinburgh, as well as Greece.

Finally Back Online!

August 24th, 2017 at 03:24 pm

I finally purchased a new laptop & have computer access at home again. I always had my phone, but you just can't do everything on your phone. I got a Dell Inspiron 2-in-1 with touch screen. There are a few things that I'm not crazy about, but overall I like it. Can't be too picky at the price I paid. It's much smaller & lighter than my last laptop. I'm just sorry that I didn't back it up before it died on me.

This is the time of year that I start paying attention to any news about retirement plans limits. This morning I read projections that the 401k limit may go up to $18,500, but not sure about the IRA limits.

Seems that the stock market has relaxed a bit. I had a couple of days that I had reached $600k before it pulled back. I should have done a screenshot of my Mint.com accounts to remember the feeling I had when I saw my investments balance. Smile I hope that with regular contributions I'll see that number again before the end of the year.

Spendy Week

July 23rd, 2017 at 04:06 pm

This has been a spendy week between paying off one trip, booking another trip, and having to replace my laptop that died on me. And yes, I could kick myself for not having backed up my computer before it finally died on me. Oh well, I will have to get someone to try & recover those files or call them a loss. Nothing is irreplaceable I don't think. Most of my pictures I upload to my FB account or have in my phone.

I ended up buying the Dell Inspiron 11" 3000. It's a 2-in-1, which I finally figured out is like a laptop & a tablet combined. I don't do much besides browsing the web on my laptop & keeping track of my financial goals in Excel spreadsheets so it's probably more than sufficient for my needs.

I've noted that the big boost that my home value got in the months following the flood has disappeared so I have adjusted for that. I also finally got my insurance claim settled for my plumbing leak damages so we scheduled the repairs for next month. I'll be so happy to not have to look at holes in my ceilings & walls!

I had a wonderful vacation in New York & Virginia earlier this month. We saw several shows. I personally saw Bandstand, Hello Dolly, Sweeney Todd, The Great Comet, and 1984. We also visited the Met & the Cloisters. On Sunday I got to go to Hillsong church which I also did last year. I took the train from Penn Station to Union Station and spent 4 days with my sister's family. I really enjoyed my time with the kids.

I am looking forward to my cruise in October and my trip to England & Scotland after Christmas. In March I have a trip planned to Greece. I can't think about booking anymore trips for a while. I am working more hours at my second job in between my trips. Fun comes at a cost!

Increased Loan Payments

May 28th, 2017 at 03:58 pm

I have increased payments for my auto & TSP loans, as well as my mortgage. Those few dollars won't be missed, but over time they will really add up towards paying down my debt sooner. I am now very close to breaking even on my principal vs. interest amounts. Very soon I will be paying more on principal that interest. And I have more than 50% equity in my home. I wish that I had increased payments sooner, but better late than never.

I am going to enjoy this long Memorial Day weekend. Yesterday I got up early to take my car in for service. I purchased the tire care package when I bought my car & I have made good use of it. I think this is the second tire that I have had replaced already. They found a small hole that couldn't be patched.

Then I came home & napped, which I have needed. Last weekend I worked 24 hours while fighting a cold. Then yesterday evening I dropped by my co-workers' son's 16th birthday to give him a card and some cash for his gift. They had a ton of food. I ate some there & they send me home with a plate of shrimp, my favorite.

Today I am just being lazy until it's time for church this evening. I will eventually do some much needed cleaning. The gym is not closed tomorrow for the holiday so I won't get out of my run.

At home I have several ceiling repairs to be done due to roof leaks & a tub leak from my second floor bathroom. The plumbing repairs of nearly $700 I had to pay for, but the damages will be covered by insurance. It's so hard to find contractors at this time.

Oh, updates on my other passion besides personal finance...travel! I am going to New York & DC over 4th of July. Taking a short cruise this autumn, traveling to England & Scotland after Christmas, and Greece in the spring. I'm turning 40 in December & celebrating all year!

Dublin

December 11th, 2016 at 03:25 am

In New York for the night en route back from Dublin. Will fly back home tomorrow. I had a wonderful trip, though our time was short. We did the 48 hour hop on, hop off bus which made it easy to see a lot of the sites. I saw almost everything that I wanted to see, with the exception of Kilmainham Gaol (sold out in advance) and Jameson Distillery (closed for renovations until St. Patrick's Day 2017). At the price we got our trip for on Groupon Getaways, I'm okay with making a return trip. Maybe next time I'll see the coastal towns.

I see stocks continue to rise. I still thinking we're in for a recession soon, but I'll enjoy watching the gains until then.

December 2016 Goals

November 27th, 2016 at 04:08 pm

One month and a few days left in 2016. Three more paychecks. I am on track to max out my TSP & Roth IRA. I will contribute at least 6k to my 401k for the year as well. Other expected income includes the cash my parents give me for my birthday & Christmas. I haven't heard what bonus we'll receive at work, if any.

Black Friday spending included the sale at B&BW and some gifts on clearance for co-workers at Williams Sonoma. I bought some new sneakers online yesterday. Don't think they'll get here in time for my trip, but they were needed regardless. At least shipping to the store for pick-up was free.

Finally

February 8th, 2015 at 07:00 pm

Yes, finally. Finally, my promotion is on record. My last paycheck was supposed to my first for my increased pay, but that wasn't done in time. So this week's paycheck will have a double increase. I've stepped up my credit card payments & have applied for PRN jobs to provide additional income to get my debt paid off for good.

The things that I usually shop for I've been abstaining from. It feels good. I've made a few clothing purchases (caught an 80% off end of season sale) to supplement my work wardrobe. I plan on advancing my career every chance that I get. I'm taking all the classes I can & networking every chance I get. I've never been more motivated. This promotion has been a very good thing & I'm so grateful.