Saturday, March 29, 2008

Number Crunching 117

March Budget Meeting

Quicken Cash Flow = 562.16

Reconciling Quicken with Bank Statement: Everything reconciled.

Reconciling last month’s budget: I ended up with money left over, thanks to unexpected income. However, I can’t honestly say I stuck to the budget in March. Problem areas:
  • Bank charges – because automatic payments went through with funds lacking
  • Acadiana Medieval Faire – something has to change with this expense because I’m tired of it coming out of my pocket when it’s unbudgeted.
  • Eating Out – I knew I blew the budget on this one, but I didn’t think I had gotten to third place of overspending with it.
  • New Insurance – technically I’m not sure what type of insurance to file it under. It pays for disability and funeral expenses. I hadn’t budgetted for it, but it was a good deal.
  • Mom – borrowed gas money and paid her back for that the same month
  • Medical – prescriptions pushed me over the budgeted amount. I’ll be so thrilled when I can refuel the FSA and start using it again.
  • Computer: software – I hadn’t planned on buying a registry scrubbing program, but the computer is running better since I used it.
  • Household – I don’t remember what I bought for the house but it must have been something I really needed.
  • Grocery – went over the budget amount, no real surprise with price increases.
  • Entertainment – I bought a book today, not budgeted but my fun for getting my tax refund.
  • Citifinancial payment – I had to pay a late fee which wasn’t budgeted.
  • Categories that went over but stayed under $5.00:
    • TurboTax fees
    • Auto fuel
    • Atmos Energy
    • Tangi Water
    • Auto service

Where did I stay under budget?
  • Telephone/cellphone: first new cellphone bill is due in April
  • Mortgage: overestimated the budget amount

Verdict: Better than February but still falling down too much.

Creating April’s budget: I think I need to start budgeting by the week. Most of the bank charges are from auto payments going through without money to cover them fully (because I overspent the money, but you have to buy gas).

#Headdesk# Breaking down by the week, I end up with money leftover at the end of the month. But I run out of money in the first week and then in the third week. There’s also five weeks in April. #Headdesk#

So much for being able to move money from my tax refund into a high-yield savings account. So much for being able to keep money in savings for gasoline purchases. The $205.10 that AMF owes me plus $125.06 that I can draw from savings gets rid of only one of the overspent weeks. Crap.

Mom and I talked about doing a garage sale, but I can’t earn $300 from that (not with what I have to sell). #Headdesk# I have aluminum cans to sell for recycling. #Sigh# I still have books and DVDs to set up for sell on Amazon. I have some ideas for the website that could hopefully earn money, but when can I get them implemented? #Pulling hair out# I’m going for more chocolate.

Okay, more chocolate and having to explain to Mom that next month is April not May and no I don’t believe the government is going to give me $600 and if they do it has to go in my gas tank. So now I’m doing a second job search. #Whimper# I really didn’t want to get another time suck before getting the writing established. Damnit. Or finishing school. Damnit.

I had done the math earlier this week (to price what I should sell stuff online for) and figured that an hour of my time needs to be worth $10.77. I can always get more, but less than that won’t give me any headway on my financial goals. Also the point to figuring that out was to see what I lose by not writing. So at least I have a salary range to plug into job applications.

I’m applying for a part-time job at North Oaks. Next online stop will be Hammond Job Search, or whatever they call it. But what do I do while waiting to hear from them? I’m going to have to get the writing for pay off the ground. #Headdesk#

Yes, I have been avoiding it, I have to let stuff go, and I can’t. #Headdesk# Here’s my weekend, figuring out my budget all day. Sunday, AMF meeting hopefully not all day long but probably will be. Yes, I do waste a lot of time but how much time is in the day? #Headdesk#

Okay, I want to wave a magic wand and have my money issues fixed. That’s not going to happen anytime soon.

Determining how much cash to withdraw for the pay periods in April: I’m not drawing out cash in April. I think I fall into the category of people that have-cash-spend-it-like-water. And I spend most of it at work in the vending machines—so not healthy. So April will be an experiment with that.

Ensuring all automatic payments went through for March: Yeah, that’s good.

Ensuring all automatic payments are set up for the next month: Yeah, they are, biggest part of the problem. Maybe I can get the mortgage moved. But I honestly, don’t see a better date on the calendar to move it to.

Review savings goals:
  1. STEF = $2202.00 Current total = $135.06
  2. Dishwasher fund = $500.00 Current total = $0.00
  3. Reenacting Hobby Fund = $200.00 Current total = $0.00

Update NetWorth IQ statement:

Update No Credit Needed Network Savings Chart:

Overview and Plans
Crap! It should not take five hours to fill out a job application. I’m done with it now. I can’t find the other one I was talking about and too tired to think about it. This took all damn day!

Sunday – I’m getting the writing shit together. After I get back from the store buying some munchies for the meeting. I hope the meeting doesn’t take all day, but I just can’t have people at my house without anything for them to eat.

Call mortgage company and see if I can get the payment date moved.

I’d love to get to the point where I live on last month’s money. I understood the principle as the blogger explained it. What I don’t understand is how they reached the point to jump start it.

3/30/08: Had a bright idea after I got some sleep. If I can get my car note on hold for April and move the mortgage to after my first paycheck for April, I’d only need to pull $20 out of savings. #Crossing fingers# I’ll start calling Monday.

Read Free!
The BookWorm

There is a new renaissance festival in Louisiana! Check out the Acadiana Medieval Faire at:

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