First Friday Finances for April

…on a Wednesday. I was so wrapped up in getting my Mother’s Day gift guide done that I completely spaced doing our end of month wrap up for April! So here goes, all of the April finance weirdness in one spot. 🙂

April was weird. Didn’t I say that for March? And February? Yeah, it was another weird month. So let’s jump in to see where our numbers ended up.

Our Personal Finances

Last month we were so proud of ourselves for having our highest savings rate ever, at 42.6%. Which I still think is awesome! However, this month made my brain explode with our savings. Now let me start by saying, our income was much higher, allowing us to save more. Philip was paid three times in April, plus we got our government stimulus. That DOUBLED our income for the month! Yes, please! So while we didn’t have any money being invested in my IRA through work, we were able to just shovel a decent little chunk to our savings account, which brought our total savings rate to 68%. BAM. Our investments are doing a bit better, thank heavens, now Philip can stop having heart palpitations when he pulls up his Personal Capital account.

Budget Items

Our spending was waaaaaaay down in April. As we were looking over our line items, we realized that this is a testament to the work we’ve done to eliminate or cut down our regular expenses. For example, we don’t have monthly phone payments since we switched to Mint Mobile. We pay our car insurance premiums in a lump sum every six months, and since we switched insurance companies last year, it is way way less than what we had been paying previously. We spent zero on toiletry items because I had purchased items and stocked up when things were on sale previously. And who needs to buy clothes when you wear pajamas every day?

But, I will say that spending in our Miscellaneous/Gifts category got a little out of control. We had two kids with birthdays this month, so of course buying gifts for them made it go up. And then there were those dang sticker books that went on sale that I bought a million of. But then there were a couple celebrations or events that we put money towards (niece getting married, Philip’s coworker’s last day lunch, sending cookies to friends for birthdays, taking dinner to a family member that had a birthday). Those are events that I never want to feel bad about spending money on. That is what I like about budgeting. For us it isn’t about spending as little money as possible, it’s more about being intentional and cutting out nonsense that really doesn’t make us happy, so that we can spend money on things and events that actually do bring happiness. So that category was high, but meh. I’m cool with it.

Blog Income

Remember those dang sticker books I just mentioned? Those were our moneymakers for April. Which, by the way, the Unicorns and Magic and Under the Sea versions of this are still hovering right around $7, which is a steal! And if you want to spend just a dollar more, the original one with a dino on the front is less than $8. I’ve bought ALLLLL of them! They are all great. Which is why I love recommending them! And luckily, several of you sweet friends ordered a few also, so we made a whopping $3 from that. Blog traffic was still low since we didn’t post a ton, so our Google Ads income was less than $2. Slowly but surely, we are getting there! We seem to be pretty good at coming in right around the $5 range, so I’m excited to try to top that as we move forward!

Looking Forward

For May, I’m going back to work! Hooray! Plus, we have already received our tax return, which is super helpful. Our income will definitely be higher than normal, but guess what we are doing? CAR SHOPPING. Yowza. We might have a negative savings rate for May if we end up buying a car. We have looked at a bunch of different SUVs, we still have a few more that we’d like to see how they actually feel sitting in them and what storage it does or doesn’t have. Anyway, it is a work in progress that will take some time for us pull the trigger on because it is such a large purchase, but we will be sure to share our thoughts once we are done! Other than that (GIANT, ONCE PER DECADE PURCHASE), our spending should be pretty typical. Childcare and gas will go up again since I’ll be going back to work. Our anniversary is in a couple weeks and I’m kind of dying for a fancy (expensive) meal, since it’s a big one! But we will see if Mr. Frugal Pants will agree with me on that one. 😉

Last year on our 14th anniversary ❤️
Wrap Up

I’m still over the moon about our savings rate, though I realize it is totally circumstantial. I’m also proud of ourselves for getting our spending down, that is what will ultimately make a difference long term! 2020 is certainly turning out to be a bit on the bonkers side, I’m almost nervous to see what comes next!

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