First Friday Finances for November

November was an exciting month for our finances! (Ha, that makes it sound like our money went on vacation or got accepted to college.) While we didn’t win the lottery or rob a bank or anything, we had some bonkers income that we’ve never had before. We also paid for my favorite thing on earth, NEWBORN PHOTOS! Which is why you get to see more than a few on this post, because my sweet babies are so precious and I have to show these or else I’ll explode. Like, wouldn’t it be a crime to keep these to myself? Exactly. You are welcome. Now, let’s jump into our normal breakdown.

Our Personal Finances

We were able to get to a 42% savings rate this month, bangarang! Not only that, but the stock market continued to climb. We weren’t sure initially, with the election being this month, what the stock market would do. Mentally, we were preparing ourselves for the worst. Not that it would have changed our gameplan, but we just try to not have the pants shocked off us if possible. That being said, our retirement investments have been steadily climbing.

Budget Items

We had one MAJOR budget blowout this month, and it was our Car Expenses category. Why is that??? Because we PAID OFF OUR VAN! I know, I haven’t even written about our van yet (I actually have two unpublished posts about it because I’m good at life 🙄), but in short, we bought it this summer, put more than half down, and financed the rest. We still needed to sell our truck, and that is where our new fun income source came from.

The past two cars we’ve sold have been so old and beat up, that we literally were paid PENNIES for them. Like, I’m not even lying when I tell you we were offered $700 for our old Civic. Ha! This time around, Philip’s truck was still in decent shape, about ten years old, and still had a lot of life in it. So we were able to sell it for basically what we owed on the van, and use that to just pay the van off.

At first, I was thinking that this would bring our savings rate WAAAAAAY up. I had thought that it would be like mortgage principal, when we pay extra towards that, we count it in our savings rate. However, Philip pointed out to me that paying off a car is different since it is a depreciating asset. So while it is super nice to not have that debt or liability, it doesn’t necessarily count towards our longterm savings. So it just means that we spent like ten grand on cars this month. 😂

We also went over budget on clothes and gifts as we took advantage of some Black Friday deals all month long. However, we were able to get stocked up on a bunch of stuff. I basically have a three year supply of jeans for my kids now, hallelujah! I probably just should have increased our budgets for those items. Meh, whatevs.

Blog Income

Killer month as we made a whopping $2.09 from our Amazon links. I believe it was all due to the buy 2, get 1 free book and game sale. I love that sale and we certainly took advantage of it, I’m glad that several of you did too! And as usual, thank you for using our links when buying things! Every two dollar commission is such a treat for me as it tells me that I’m helping you in some small way!

Looking Forward

December is likely going to be expensive. We have made a pretty good jump start on our Christmas shopping, but I know that there will be stuff that sneaks up on us or that we forgot to plan for.

Philip has also become quite the avid clearance shopper, and while we are trying not to buy stuff that we don’t need, uhhhh, have you ever tried to NOT BUY stuff that is 90% off?! It’s like they are begging us to take it. Okay, so maybe that’s how we get ourselves in trouble buying too much stuff sometimes. But! We often will donate what we get to our kids’ school classes and family members that are teachers. And of course, it’s just nice to have a bunch of random toys on hand for birthdays, rewards, stockings, etc. So when stores start to clearance stuff after Christmas, you know we’ll be there!

Wrap Up

November we had some awesome income, thanks to selling the car and Philip getting his annual bonus. And while most of it went to the van and savings, aren’t we all glad we still had some left over for pics of da babiezzzz. 😍😍

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