Wow, it's hard to believe that February is over and that we are now in March, marking a full year of the pandemic here in the States. Wooooof. There's light at the end of the tunnel, but it is still so very far away. If you had asked me a year ago what the next 12 months would be like, I don't think I would have gotten any facet of it correctly. I'm so happy to be out of February though. It's my least favorite month for a lot of reasons, and I am so tired of the winter - come on spring! We are ready for you!
February spending: spendy month (I do not include bills or debt payments in this tracking, this is all the stuff I gotta spend money on on top of those expenses). Across 9 categories, I spent juuuust under $1100.
Car/Gas - $113.57 - this was an oil change and replacement of my wiper blades. I had a coupon from the dealer for a $30 oil change, for the wiper blades, they just charged me for parts and did not charge to install. This ended up cheaper than if I had not gone to the dealer. They did forget to install the rear wiper blade (grrrr), but I will go back next Saturday and they will put it on. They'll give me my next oil change for free for the inconvenience. I only drive about 4k miles per year so this is less attractive of an incentive than it would be for some people, but whatever. They also told me that my tires need to be replaced soon (like, by the summer). While this isn't what I want to hear, but my tires are the originals from the factory, and my car has 60k miles on it (2015 model year, I purchased in 2017 with about 44k miles on it). They quoted $1150 for that, but I can definitely do better elsewhere so I am going to get a few quotes. I do not yet have any money in the auto maintenance fund, so both of these expenditures will need to come out of savings. I'm not thrilled about dipping into my newly replenished savings, but it's better than putting it on a credit card. I have owned this car since July 2017, and in that time, have only done oil changes, replaced wiper blades, rear brake pads and one trip to the body shop (covered by insurance, I just had to pay deductible). I'd say maintenance on this car has cost me maaaaaybe $1200 total since owning it, so I can live with the tires. I will sell the car long before they need to be replaced again.
Clothing - $43.87 This was my online shopping trip earlier in the month. I allotted myself $30 to spend, ordered $52 worth of items but one of them went out of stock before it could be shipped (my dress!!!!! sad face lol). I rarely buy new clothes, and this was funded out of a snowflake as per the rules of 2021's frivolous spending.
Education - $95.40 I wasn't expecting to add this as a category but here we are haha. No complaints about this - it's worth finding extra money in the budget for this, as it will return the investment in spades.
Grocery/Household/Toiletries - $377.43 A touch higher than January, but averaging at $368 for the 2 complete months of the year. This includes toiletries and anything for my household, like refilling my laundry card. Right now I don't see a need to further break it out. It's higher than I thought it would be but maybe if I just counted groceries it would be more in line. Since I eat 99% of my meals at home, I don't have an issue with this.
Miscellaneous - $248.27 this one is a little deceptive. These are the items I purchased to count towards my annual wellness stipend, for which I will be reimbursed at the end of March. March should show a credit in an equal amount for this category.
Office Supplies - $55.42 I wasn't expecting this category to have an amount in it....but I needed to purchase more printer ink last week, and impulsively bought a new roll of shipping tape with a dispenser. March will show a small credit, Staples lost the first shipment of my ink, and in addition to re-shipping it, refunded me $10 of the cost. That has not yet posted, so it'll reflect this month.
Personal Care - $159 I went back and forth on this one. I had set aside this amount (almost to the dollar) for a haircut and pedicure out of my federal refund. But then I ran out of an eyelash serum I really like. Yes, frivolous, but there's so little frivolity in my day today life that I deserve a little bit, especially if it's funded. I decided to push the haircut and pedi off for a few months, and buy the serum. If I hadn't had the funds allocated for it out of the federal refund I would have sucked it up and not purchased. But since I did, I am ok with it going to something else in that category. I've found some extra funds in April for a haircut.
Subscriptions - $2.99 this is my monthly iCloud storage.
Takeout/Entertainment - $2.06 This one is great! I expect March to be higher here as I have dinner plans with a friend in 2 weeks.
Total - $1098.01
I also completed my February account summary. Pretty happy with my progress in just 2 months so far.
Good progress made on all of my priorities. Between the pending 3rd stimulus, a very small disbursement from my grandfather's estate and a few other snowflakes, I am expecting March to be another good progress month. I'll definitely have to dip into savings to cover a few things (the oil change/wiper blades bill, my mom's birthday, and a few things yet to be identified).....but again, spending from savings is better than putting onto the credit card. This year is going to be the learning/transition year, so I think my savings will not be as healthy at the end of the year as I had hoped it would be. But my debt will continue to go down, and I'll know what I need to budget for next year.