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Fall updates -- work and budget




Well I kinda fell out of the habit of posting in the blog! Here's the latest:


Went on the cruise, it was great. Bought myself a gorgeous tanzanite/diamond ring for $350 (plus the gf paid another $150 towards it). This was not in the budget, but I cashflowed it from the awesome July income. I LOVE IT. I had no real or nice jewelry and I'm not really a big jewelry person, but I wear this ring every day and feel the splurge was worth it. Had a great time with my mom, we both really needed the break. And nothing like introducing your gf to your mom for the first time and then everyone bunking down in a 90sqft cabin for a week to find out if they like each other! (they did) Other than the ring, stayed within budget on the cruise, so very happy about that since I wasn't totally sure what to expect.


Also went to my aunt's wedding, travelling with my sister. All budgeted and paid for ahead of time and stayed easily within budget. Was a good time and I got a lot more one on one time with my new niece! (So. Much. Family. this year for me who lives 2000 miles away from all of them!)


Just finished decorating for fall/Halloween. Only bought about $10 of candy/new decorations and plan on about $15 for pumpkins (we go to the pumpkin patch next weekend). So that's pretty good all in all.


On to work --- I gave up doing the employee schedule. I've done it for nearly 3 years and I was DONE. We've been bought out by a corporation during that time and in the last year our entire management team has turned over - not for the better. We've grown by 100% in employee numbers. It's a stressful, chaotic, and exhausting job that I was not being properly compensated for. And with my own move this summer to only working in the clinic one day/wk, it was even more invasive because I STILL had to go into the clinic another 2-3 days/wk to work on the schedule for just a few hours at a time because its dynamic enough that you can't just sit down once a week and churn it out. (not if you want to actually do a good job that is, which I still tried to do) It was flexible hours but at the same time not really flexible in the way I needed -- if something changed/happened you needed to respond quickly to it. So it was impossible to develop a schedule/routine outside of the clinic during the weekdays, which is something I really need to do in order to be productive and self-manage. So the newest change was that they were forcing us to move to a different scheduling software and I said nope, I don't want to put in the crazy amount of work that will entail and I'm just overall done, give it to someone else. So now they have a girl who hasn't even worked on the floor before (she was a receptionist) doing it WHILE learning/working a new position in a new department to the hospital. She's smart she just doesn't have the right background to really enable her to do it the most effectively as she doesn't really understand the various positions/employees/dynamics of the schedule. And I found out that they are not even offering her any additional compensation for taking on the schedule. Basically they are totally taking advantage of her and screwing her over. Gee, reinforces why I wanted out of dealing with this management on a daily basis! I hope she does well, I've let her know she can come to me with any questions, but she's going to make a lot of mistakes and have a nasty learning curve -- and morale is already in the toilet. Makes me sad.


So -- now I am working just one shift/wk at the clinic - in the oncology dept! I always thought I would hate hate hate onco, but I'm being pleasantly surprised that it isn't dark and depressing like I thought it would be. Most patients are actually in pretty good condition/attitude, the owners are pretty logical, and I get to use my favorite skills ALL day long -- drawing blood, placing IV catheters, and organizing everything meticulously! I really only took the position because it worked around my schedule needs (not too early/late in the day, a mid-week shift, etc). But I have been really happy with it. I wanted to stay a PT employee at the clinic vs. just going to relief/sub work for a few reasons: to keep my employee pet care discount of 50% plus free labwork/exams, to keep getting the call-in bonus of $100 if I come in on a shift with less than 24 hours notice, to keep my senority/pay scale intact in case I wanted to be FT again, AND to keep one source of stable, guaranteed income. It's not alot, only $600 per month after taxes and 15% to the 401K are taken out, but close to 1/3 of my "normal" monthly income.


The business has definitely tapered off the last couple of months. A couple of bigger jobs has kept the monthly tallies up ok, but those were one-time gigs. It always gets quieter in the fall/winter because less people go out of town and a big chunk of my business involves medical petsitting. So now that I am FINALLY not doing the schedule at the clinic and have set days off each week, I can work on truly getting some business promotion going. For real. Or I'm going to be getting myself in trouble!


August I got $730 from the July extra business income into the Hills/Valley fundafter accounting for cashflowing my ring and some other stuff. Aug business income was less since I was out of town and had to pay someone to cover for me for half the month. But still managed to make my normal income amount and squeak out $130 to the Hills/Valley fund. I only have $140 more to finish it out! So close! Sept business income was the lowest in 6 months -- boo. But I worked a ton the last 2 weeks in Sept at the clinic training the new girl to do scheduling and training to do the oncology stuff for myself. So I broke even - no snowball to the H/V fund, but didn't have to reduce the budget/pull money from the H/V either.


October projected income is looking good:

Clinic: $1400ish

Business: $700ish

Total: $2100ish (after retirement)


So I SHOULD have ~$200 in snowball. Unfortunately, my plane ticket for Thankgiving will be more than I had planned it looks like, so that will have to go to cashflowing that along with what I have saved in the travel fund. Ugh..I want to finish this Hills/Valley fund SO BAD, but at least I'm not pulling from it or having to reduce the budget. Unless there is a big upswing in business income (which could definitely happen and will be what I'm working towards!), Nov income overages will go to finishing the H/V fund and cashflowing Christmas expenses as I don't have a great handle on them yet. So it looks like no BS6 snowballs for 2015, bummer. BUT I only have to look at my signature to see alll that I HAVE accomplished in 2015! I've cashflowed several thousand in vacations/family trips. I've cashflowed new garden/yard equipment purchases, a property survey, a fence. I've established a 2.5K Hills/Valley fund(or buffer, or business FFEF, whatever you want to call it). I've continued adding to my own FFEF and not needed to use any of it. I've maintained 15% into my retirement accounts. I haven't had to drop my budget expenses even once. And I did all this while:


Starting the year working just 30hrs/wk plus minimal side business income.

Changing in June to 15hrs/wk at the clinic and significantly increasing the business income.

Moving in October to 9hr/wk at the clinic and pushing forward with "FT" self-empployment.


Through this, my base budget with the "normal" amounts that I been using throughout the year is $1900/mo after taxes/401K. So that's a gross of $32,500 annually as my base income. I'm feeling pretty good about that!

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