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Entries in this blog

 

October!

Well, we are in a place we haven't seen in a while... baby step 3! Based on current projections, after replacing our sinking funds, we will not climb out of the hole until December! So, I stopped the 529 contributions (which kills me) but should help to keep me motivated to fix the mess we are in.   We never made it to the deck project or dental work, but we did go forward with the beater car - and even paid $1000 for it, but spent $$ to pass inspection. We've also had issues with our other c

gmarie

gmarie

 

It's August!

It's a new month and I'm determined to make our budget work and get back on track! My goal is to get all of the baby steps in the budget, with our 10% gross to giving and a min $1000 snowball.   I want to convert the traditional iras to Roth, but need to do some tax planning to see if we can afford to do it this year. My health insurance is also going up so need to review that as well.   I would like to automate our 15% retirement so we can finally be consistent with BS4. I have automated th

gmarie

gmarie

 

sooo ready for August!

Well, it's been quite a month, and July is not even over yet! I think I'm going to hide out in our bedroom with the baby until it is, just in case!!   We fixed the balcony, replaced the boiler, and bought the pool fence. The boiler completely died two hours before the new one was delivered, leaving us with no hot water until his brother (who does hvac for a living) could come over to help install it...but they didn't have time to do the heat, so he'll have to come back... We have also been hav

gmarie

gmarie

 

Update: baby is here :-)

So I had the baby on 4/6, a week past my due date. I did end up with a c section after a 2 day labor so slowly recovering from that. But, he is healthy and perfect, and so incredibly adorable!! I wish he could stay this small forever. ;-) Breastfeeding is going well, he gained back his birth weight plus some (was born 7 lbs 9 oz and yesterday at the pediatrician's office he weighed 7 lb 13 oz). We started using the cloth diapers a few days ago and that has also been going well also. We love the

gmarie

gmarie

 

need to vent

Well, the good news is that we did max out my hsa and fund the 11k IRAs by 4/15. We did have to use some non-essential sinking funds to help with cash flow, but expecting to fund the sinking funds again by the end of the month, or within a week of May. The bad news is that I found out I was pregnant in March, and went for my 10 week ultrasound on Tues only to find out there is again no heartbeat. We are devastated, but after a very bad experience with my doctors office, we are going for a secon

gmarie

gmarie

 

Accountability...

Work has been crazy, the paper route on top of DH's job is just nuts... and snow on the first day of spring! (Although I would be perfectly happy if winter ended on April 15th! It kills me to be cooped up inside on the first nice days of spring!)   this is my new to do list, helps to write it here for some accountability!   Mail HSA payment of $2785 to my HSA. Make 2015 HSA Deposit for DH so we can reimburse ourselves for the Dr bill we just paid. Budget this weekend - were were most rece

gmarie

gmarie

 

The plan

I need some accountability so I'm writing it down here.   I ran our taxes quickly the other night, and turns out my tax planning was off. We need to max out my hsa (which happens to be great goal since it was wiped out last year and it would nice to refill it) in order to get most of the 11k IRA since we are phasing out of it. Why I didn't pick this up before is beyond me. But, I did the taxes very quickly at the end of a long day so maybe I'm missing something.   So, DH and I will add abou

gmarie

gmarie

 

budget issues and slow progress

We are in baby step 4, with a goal of saving 11k by 4/15. In Jan, I set up our budget to calculate 15% of gross on an ongoing basis, and right now, our snowball is also going to step 4 as well. I set it up this way because I want to start seeing what it's going to be like on an ongoing basis. But, despite being tax season, we are struggling to have any snowball at all, and it is scary!!   We've had some big expenses recently (DH surgery, which included an extra 10% that I didn't include in my

gmarie

gmarie

 

Struggling to keep up...

So I am really struggling to keep up with both jobs, DH, and the house. It is a constant juggling act - and no one is really all that happy - cpa boss, ebay boss and DH. They all feel like I'm not giving enough of myself and I feel like I’m going to have a breakdown. Even my cats feel neglected - they will come and sit on my keyboard and won't move!   DH wants me to quit ebay and focus on my “career”, although this career will give me little flexibility once I have a baby. It will mean full ti

gmarie

gmarie

 

updates

So we are making slow progress with the deck. The lumber was purchased - it's just a matter of finding the time to fix it. I should also confess that we did fix the above ground pool. :-) I know this is a want, not a need, but it turned out we just needed a liner for $400, plus water for $900, and it would have been more of a pain to rebuild that part of the deck. (It's a huge oval above ground built into the deck). I also found a helpful website/forum that advocates using bleach, borax, and bak

gmarie

gmarie

 

tax planning

So I did some tax planning yesterday thinking that with the house purchase maybe we can even reduce our w/h. HA! Boy was I wrong! I don't know what I was thinking. First, the house/itemizing saves us only 2k/ year. But, because there are three jobs between us, our withholding is way, way off. This is our first year with only W2 income, and I assumed it would be fine at married 0, but we need to be at single 0 (and then some). We also took 5k (penalty free) out of traditional IRAs to help with th

gmarie

gmarie

 

goals

So, we closed on 6/9, and we are slowly settling into the house. I am overwhelmed, but I am just taking things one at a time. The house is gorgeous...lots of work, but it is just so pretty here. We just need more time to get things done. I haven't exactly figured out how I am supposed to work two jobs and take care of a house and 10 acre property (and have babies), but we'll figure it out.   Shortly after we closed, it hit me that I was approaching our goals the wrong way (repairs, 6 mo efund,

gmarie

gmarie

 

3 days until closing!

We received the hud today, and our closing costs came in a little under budget. So that is good! We will close Monday with a fully funded 3 mo efund, $2201 for house repairs, plus June's snowball.   However, June's snowball is not looking so hot with oil for both houses, 4 new tires and whatever extras are already in the budget. Also, I had been overlooking the fact that the school tax due date is September, so that increased our monthly budget for the rest of the year.   We do plan on griev

gmarie

gmarie

 

Less than a week until closing!

We are packing (finally)! We have a free truck/mover to use. Also received an offer from my bank to go down to 3.25% for $350. I wasn't thrilled about paying another fee, but it will save substantial money. We finally got to see a copy of our appraisal, and we are waiting on the hud, should have it tomorrow morning. It sounds like it will be less than I budgeted, but we will see!   On a sad note, a fox is just slaughtering our chickens one by one. We are down to under 20. We tried trapping the

gmarie

gmarie

 

2 weeks til closing!

It just occurred to me that in two weeks, we will own a pretty yet affordable house on 10 acres! We have so much work ahead of us, and I can not wait to get started!!   We have had quite the experience - we almost lost the house over open building permits, but our amazing realtor FINALLY convinced the banks realtor to let us close them. We had the inspectors in last week and passed, so now just waiting for the paperwork and for our close date.   We have a 3 day weekend to clean up the yard o

gmarie

gmarie

 

house update

update: we rec'd our mortgage commitment today! Also, our close date got moved back 1 week (it wasn't 120 days from the foreclosure date) which works for us since it just means we can save a tiny bit more ;-) We *should* start out with a full 3 month e-fund. We are so so excited. I feel like it's finally time to start planning! (I have been just taking it one day at a time) and avoiding making any lists or moving plans, etc given all of the stress of the last few weeks. Anyway, just wanted to

gmarie

gmarie

 

update

Update: we found our dream home for an amazing price, and we are in contract. It's a foreclosure, and our close date is the beginning of June. We are following the DR plan by putting 10% down on a 15 year mortgage (and are within his income guidelines), and will have enough cash for closing costs. We are however, cashing in two small IRA's (penalty free for first time home buyers) to help, which obviously not DR approved, but we just couldn't pass this one up, and we'll have plenty of time for B

gmarie

gmarie

 

2 week countdown!

Wow, I can't believe it is April 1st!! Only two weeks left until the end of tax season! It has been an interesting season - so much different than the last firm I was at. I just submitted my time sheet for 137 hours for the last two weeks, and I've also been putting in about 10-15 hours week at my part time job. I am ready for a break! (And some house hunting)! I posted in the bs3 challenge that our snowball was 5124 this month, putting us at $20058 total savings (not including efund). So, we ar

gmarie

gmarie

 

updates

I posted in the BS3 challenge that my snowball is $4113 this month! I would love to hit 5k+ next month.   I am probably delusional if I think we will have 37500 saved by Spring, but we are projected to have at least 20k (plus our efund) by the end of April. Not sure how we can come up with the extra money by Spring but stranger things have happened and it all adds up!   I even received a random check in the mail two days ago - $12.72 for a "passport refund" from the US Treasury. I rushed a n

gmarie

gmarie

 

gazelle intensity and crazy expensive cat food

I'm really feeling gazelle these days. I get so excited and obsessed when I'm like this. It's so much fun!   I'm seriously considering bartering eggs for olive oil since we are out and we only have about $10 left in the grocery budget for the month. Maybe my mom would be willing?   We are going to my nieces birthday party today so that will be fun. We were planning on bringing some eggs, so maybe I can get some olive oil out of the deal. :-)   Our one budget killer is that my Siamese has b

gmarie

gmarie

 

updates

Transferred the rest of the snowball to savings - $3014.42 total.   We really need to get gazelle over the next few months. In addition to the house savings, I would love to put 10k into HSAs and retirement for the 2013 tax year. It would bring us to 7.5% retirement savings for the year and fund both hsas up to our deductibles (I'm assuming mine is going to be cleaned out soon w/ the extra dr/hospital expenses). My deductible won't renew until Nov but I would still rather put the money back no

gmarie

gmarie

 

sooo sad

So we went for a checkup yesterday and found out the baby no longer has a heartbeat and has not grown past 7 weeks. I am devastated, but on the other hand know that everything happens for a reason, and we will try again in a few months. I also have bronchitis, and have been sick since 12/24, which happens to be the date of my first ultrasound that showed a heartbeat. (however the pregnancy did look a week off at that point which I thought was odd). The Dr said that being sick is not related, but

gmarie

gmarie

 

best and worst of 2013 and 2014 goals

2013 was an interesting year. Our goal was to save money for a down payment, but it was difficult for us to stay gazelle, especially when we had put off so much during BS2. So, at the end of 2013, our BS3b fund is just $7500. We had some insanely large expenses (and very few of them were needs) this year including:   •$2658 Car repairs/maintenance. Included brakes and tires on both cars, and a timing belt. •$1250 motorcycle - a bs2 promise to DH, that(thankfully) is not up and running yet. •

gmarie

gmarie

 

baby/house budget review

Ok, so I FINALLY have a balanced budget with DH Salary and my current at home part-time job and 1 baby/ buying a house for 15% of our NET take home pay including taxes/insurance.   *The budget does not include any extra for me working other bookkeeping/tax prep jobs or snowflakes, just our minimum income. I have also done tax planning based on one child, and all tax deductible items listed below and have adjusted our withholding; we will have no refund based on these numbers.   *The budget d

gmarie

gmarie

 

confession... we looked a house today.

So we looked at an old, (and I mean, very) old house today with a ridiculous number of acres (large enough for a substantial farm operation), at the very top of our price range in one of the highest school tax zones in this area. (not to mention the worst schools). We were even pre-approved for the asking price yesterday by both our bank and our credit union. (and here is the real confession: with 5% down and a 30 yt mortgage!?!?!?!). I know, I know, what was I thinking?? But, I just fell in th

gmarie

gmarie

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