Oh July. You are the month that BROKE us. I mean, not completely. But good heavens, it was an EXPENSIVE month! I thought June was nuts, but July was the month that our vehicles took over. So! Let’s get to it.
Our Personal Finances
Philip was so excited that this month his 401K finally recovered from the drastic dip it took in February/March. Granted, we’ve been continually adding money to it, but the investments have gone back up. Thank heavens! We also have increased our principal payment for our mortgage, which we include in our savings rate, helping it go up. My Simple IRA contributions will continue until I stop working, which is helping too. All said and done, our savings rate was just under 45%. Not bad! Our initial goal for the year was to be over 40% each month, and so far we’ve been able to do it!
Like I mentioned before, this is the month that our cars ate our money. Philip’s old trusty truck started making a weird noise, which is never good. He took it to a shop that said it was a common problem with 2010 Chevy trucks and would be around $4500 to repair. GULP. Um, no thanks? So Philip called around to get second opinions and quotes, only to hear similar things. After taking it to a referred mechanic, and it was all said and done, the problem wasn’t quite as bad as they initially anticipated. So it was only a $1800 repair. ONLY. We decided to go with it, since we still needed the truck to fit our little family and didn’t want to be forced into making a quick decision on a new car. It sure was frustrating initially though, trying to sift through the options. Do we just sell as is? Do we fix it and keep it around a while? We were planning on selling it within a couple months anyway, so we didn’t want to dump a ton of money into it, you know? Ugh, what a headache.
And then what did we do at the end of the month? We bought a new (to us) car (cue me sweating a lot over this decision and hating spending money). Thank heavens for the high savings rates of the previous months, because we ended up choosing a car more expensive than we initially thought. But we will have an entire blog post on that ridiculous process one of these days! Just know, spending money on cars is about my least favorite thing in the entire world. Like I don’t want to have to do it again for another 50 years or so.
Other than so many car expenses, we were mostly okay in the other budget categories. One thing that was nice is that with another very expensive ultrasound, I was able to meet our family medical deductible! And I only have about $900 more before meeting my out of pocket max also. It sure will be nice to be able to check in at the hospital and not pay a hefty $3000 on the spot like we have with our other kids. This is our first baby(ies) that we have gotten pregnant and delivered in the same year, which sure will be helpful!
YOU GUYS! We are officially official bloggers! Initially we had thought that we had to have made over $100 from Amazon before they would pay out anything, but we were wrong! We had our first $10.21 deposited into our bank account this month! BALLERS, RIGHT?!?! It seems silly, but it really means so much to us to see these tiny baby numbers from the affiliate commissions we get from your purchases add up! When I saw the deposit and we figured out what it was, I said to Philip, “We should celebrate and go spend it!” To which Philip replied, “I’m pretty sure we already did.” Oh yeah, that’s right. We paid for our blog hosting fee last October, and it was much more than our income thus far, but it was such a rewarding feeling. So thank you!
And in addition to the pay out, our account is back up to 90 cents, from yet another person purchasing the paint by sticker books! I swear, those books might be what actually funds our retirement! 😂 If you missed the link, here is the blog post with our favorite Amazon toys, it might be a good time to start slowly chipping away at Christmas gifts!
In July I didn’t get as far on the babies’ room as I had hoped, so our budget for that will trickle into this month. And of course, not only that, but within the first few days of the month, our garage door broke and we had to get a whole new spring and motor, none of which was super cheap, so that already busted our home spending budget! Crap!
We have also started budgeting for Christmas and purchasing things as we can. We try to have a lot of it done early so that we can better enjoy the holiday season, and this month already I have found LEGOs at Costco that will be saved for the holidays. Also, I feel like gifts for Philip’s coworkers always sneak up on us! He basically just hands out Amazon gift cards, but we have decided that instead of spending several hundred dollars on them all at once, the week of Christmas, we would try to spread that out too. So just last week I grabbed a couple when Fry’s was offering 4X fuel points (because you know I’m nuts about the fuel points), and figure it’s a win-win! I get the points, and we are just a smidge closer to having things taken care of before it’s crunch time!
Also, this is my last month working. I thought I’d be able to work into September, but geez, this pregnancy is a little different than my last three! So we will get back into navigating the single income situation come next month!
All in all, July seemed crazy. But I think that’s just our lives now! It’s starting to really hit home that we are going to have TWO new babies in our home in the next couple months and we need to get ready! Fingers crossed that we can get everything ready that we need to!