Wisedebther Weekly Spending 1/21/18-1/29/18

Well well well.. back to Monday. I spent a good deal of the weekend playing catch up with some work-related stuff. Although it wasn’t the most recreational weekend in the books, I sure did save a lot of $$ as a result. I also have my mom in town for a long weekend, meaning I’ll have plenty of leisure time ahead. My weekly spending is below:

In terms of categories, my highest expense was household, which consisted of a Target run to pick up some cleaning/house supplies. In my debt pay off, I’ve learned to avoid stores like Target, Walmart, etc, because they are spending ‘sieves’ . Money flows out of my wallet a little too quickly in those parts….EVEN when I make a list. I find its easy to rationalize “I need X, Y, Z”, particularly when it relates to household stuff. Now, I realize this is personal and perhaps the same way other people may feel in a clothing store, but for me its one of my weakness areas. $61 seems like a good chunk of change (and it is !), but back in my debt ignorance phase, I would easily slide into the $100 range. Small, little baby steps…

Food expenses were low because I had done my shopping on Saturday of the previous week. And “Funtivities” consisted of 2 coffee dates–both work related. One was for a meeting and the other was a Saturday pick me up before diving back into report writing. Finally, Misc. was office supplies + postage fees.

An easy and simple week. Aside from tallying up my numbers I find there are other benefits to keeping track of spending on a weekly basis. Whenever I add up my numbers, I take a “deep dive” into my bank account statements. It serves as a reality check and keeps me honest. It also keeps me motivated to know where I will be in terms of cash flow once I’m debt free.

This leads quite seamlessly into my exciting decision. By March 1, 2018, I will be officially debt-free! Based on my calculated earnings, upcoming tax-return ( I still don’t know exact amount getting back), emotional comfort with where my emergency fund stands, I am ready to say ADIOS to my debt!

Thus, this next month I’ll be aiming to maintain/lower my expenses wherever possible. I envision using weekly spending for the next few months, particularly as I want to ensure I don’t have any unplanned spending spikes as I adjust to my debt free lifestyle. However, I’ll be frank, I don’t think daily/weekly calculations will continue to benefit me in the long-term. I want to find greater automation in my tracking. I’m not exactly sure what this will look like, maybe Personal Capital or something else. The jury is out on that one.

At any rate, I’m ready to get to watching some “Bachelor” drama. Wishing all a fruitful financial week ahead!

Wine and Win: Saying NO to clearance

This Wednesday is my Friday! Winesday is feeling extra special in my neck of the woods. Tomorrow I head north to Boston to visit family, friends, and then attend a wedding of one of my first college friends. She is super sweet and adorable and has been dating her husband to be for nearly 10 years—WOW! It’s true love y’all. I was planning to write about my latest money fail, but hey that can wait ‘til later. Instead, I want to focus on my small, but mighty money “win”. The money win is actually related to weddings, but does require a bit of backpedaling.

A few rainy Sundays ago, after drinking just a little too much the night before (recovery periods for this 29 year old are approximately 48 hours), I realized that there was no way in hell I was making it to the mall. I was however, completely capable of shopping from my couch. I was failing hardcore until my boyfriend saved the day and found a dress on clearance from Rent the Runway. I had never used Rent the Runway previously. Honestly, I was always pretty frightened given that my short stature and lady curves make shopping of all kinds tricky. To top it off, the dress was final sale. It was a risk, but I did due diligence. Luckily, the site provides tons and tons of reviews and a plethora of pictures, so I was able to make the $100 purchase with confidence, albeit shaky.

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Wine and Win: Cheap A$$ Coffee

The midweek slump is real. It is also the perfect time to revel in some positivity. Hence, “Wine and Win”. Every so often on a Wednesday – because hey it’s “Winesday”, I’ll plan to post a “win” meaning something learned or accomplished, by yours truly or others on a debt free journey. So grab your glass of red or white, and join me as I revel in the glory of my $7 coffeemaker.

First, let me describe my coffee love affair as it will set the context for the dilemma that follows. I started drinking coffee at 16 years old. It was a slow burn love, as I would only drink it on Sunday when I worked early mornings at a nursing home. I grew up in Massachusetts where Dunkin Donuts reigns as king. I didn’t have much of a taste for coffee back then, but I happily sucked down my iced coffees sweetened and lightened to the max.

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