Friday, December 3, 2010

December Budget & Climbing

Burning Desire

I had absolutely every intention of having this up on the 1st of this month. My budget was already to go about a week before hand. I was excited at really giving this 'minimized' budget a go around. (Up 'til this point I still had auto withdraws for the 'extra' sections I planned in last month.) I was really looking forward to accelerating the pay off of my loans. Now . . . we'll see . . .

On Wednesday after getting home Sweetheart & I were a bit tired from working all day. (Getting up at 5:30am will do that to you.) So we decided to go out to eat. We hop into the my car and drove two or three 'blocks' down the road. Stopped at a red light to make a left. Just as we got the green arrow my car stopped. More specifically the engine stopped running.


Turn on the blinkers. Not happy. I'm stopped in the middle of a busy road and can't start my car. The vehicle behind me is not happy as my Sweetheart waves him around. Please remember, when someone puts on their blinkers chances are they are having problems. Don't go cursing them out for a car that will not start. Not their fault. *sighs*

I managed to get the car started again and make my left turn. Only one street up and there's a stop sign. Pause. Start to go through only to have the engine cut off again. WHAT?! Now we push the car to the side of the road. Turn on the blinkers and wait. After a minute or two start the car and let it idle for a bit. After another minute put her into drive, take the foot off the petal . . . no running engine.

ARGH! Thank goodness my mom got me AAA for my birthday. I'm never been so thankful in my life for AAA. I always thought of it as a 'discount club.' No more I say! If you don't have AAA get your rear in gear and get it! You never know what might happen on road. (I recommend the plus because of the 50 mile free towing.)

My mechanic looked at the car and couldn't find the problem. The coolant was low, but the car wasn't on that long for it to really be the problem. He cleaned out some other part and turned up the idle. Hopefully it's all fixed. I've been debating back and forth if I need to get a new to me car.

I've come to the conclusion that I at least need to save for a new car and fast. I really hope I can run Lizzy for another year at least. I do have my emergency fund, but rather not tap that to get a car. I'm going to be set back a little to get money for the car with paying the mechanic and for the car rental. I don't like where this is going.

I've felt so empowered knowing that I have one of my many loans paid off. (Within a few cents actually.) I was hoping to give that news latter because it was technically paid off this month, but I'm so frustrated! I wasn't happy to hear one of my co-workers respond to me "It's time you got into debt like the rest of America."

First, I'm in debt already. I've got student loans coming out my ears. If having to pay about $500 a month on student loans isn't debt, what the heck is? Second, I'm not 'the rest of America." I don't intend to be. That's not my goal. My goal is to be debt free. I was 15 when I was asked to write down a goal I had for when I became an adult. I said I wanted to be debt free by age 30. I still do! It seems a little unrealistic, but that doesn't mean I can't try. This is almost as demoralizing as my one friend telling me "I'll always have credit card debt." You don't have to. Why do people insist it's the only way to live?

Without Further Ado, The Budget:
Bills (Electric) $103
Bunnies $30 *Last month was more than what I needed, adjust
Car Insurance $42
Cellphone $30
Free Money $40 *Varies slightly depending on second job
Gas $190 *Gas went up almost $.20/gal in about two weeks. Ouch! Most of the money I was going to 'save' just got lost again.
Groceries $100
Rent $280
Savings $40 *Car? I'm considering it.
Student Loans $497 *May be reduced soon, not sure how the auto deduction will change.

Grand Total: $1372/month (Take home pay.)

Extra Funds Notes:
1. Health up to $28
2. Clothing up to $40
3. Saving for a Car $$ Everything else

*December will have a 5th pay week. All extra funds that week will go towards saving for a new to me car. All 'monthly' expenses (ie Rent, Loans, ect) are considered extra money for that week.

I'll climb straight up a wall if I have to.

Monthly Climb!!!
Grand Total Last Month: $44,304.82
New Grand Total: $43,528.26
Amount Paid Off: $776.56

It was a good month. One holiday plus the 5th pay day from the previous month. Extra clean in my checking account. Don't think I'll see these numbers again for a while. I should make a goal amount to save up to before looking for a car. I think I might be able to grab a decent one for $2000? Time to start talking with people. Thank goodness there are more holidays coming.

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