Tuesday, June 01, 2010

May 2010 Racap...

Here is my recap for May. I am not going into a lot of detail. It was just bad.

My Emergency Fund is gone and it was not all spent on true Emergencies.

I bought 10 more parking passes in May. They reduced the price from $18.75/pass to $12.50/pass. Finally, a break.

Miscellaneous spending was the budget breaker. Below is complete detail.


Anonymous said...

do you realise that you need to earn at least 100k per year just to get by?

Aaren said...

You are going to have to spend the next few months pulling yourself back in HARD CORE. It was like the budget took a knock on one area, and you said to hell with it on the rest.

You're sabotaging yourself and finding excuses for it. You've essentially acknowledged that in your explanation of where your funds were going throughout the month.

We don't live with you. If you can't or won't check yourself, you'll be mired in this mess for decades to come, and that's too unfortunate. You deserve more than that. You just have to convince yourself of that.

Chitown said...


Yes, I did realize that.


Yes, I am learning that too.

gonna_make_it said...

$20 for lottery???? What is your justification for that expenditure? I'm not trying to b mean but it's a complete waste of money if u don't have money to spare

Chitown said...

I am part of a multi-year office pool.

Anonymous said...

I've never had a manicure or pedicure I do it myself. I get my hair cut twice a year then I trim my fringe myself.

Aaren said...

It's not wrong for Chi to get a manicure or pedicure just because someone else doesn't do it. And most black people with natural hair don't trim on their own--not a good look. Nor can we necessarily go that long without getting trims, unless you want a whole head of single-strand knots. And if you have no idea what I'm talking about, then accept that there are some things Chi may just need to do.

It's not a matter of superimposing our priorities on Chi. It's a matter of Chi determining for herself where her priorities lie, and then adjusting her spending accordingly. If she says her priority is debt repayment, but spends close to $600/month on food, there's an imbalance there that a $25 pedicure can't cure.

Chi, it's as I said before. You are living so high above your income, and even though you've received close to or at least $20,000 worth of raises since this blog started, your expenses have increased more than that. You blew your emergency fund on non-emergencies, which would have made a nice dent in your credit card balance. Your mindset of deserving this or that, or feeling obligated to pay for the other, and then using funds dedicated to a different purpose, WILL defeat you. I just don't know what to say chica.

Anonymous said...

Aaren, there is no need to shout down other people's comments. I was merely making suggestions. As for superimposing my opinions this is not true, nowhere did I say Chitown must/should do what I do.

Everyone has an opinion including yourself who usually has the most to say. Unless someone is being rude or insulting they ought to be able to offer that opinion without being moderated by you.

Aaren said...

Please tell me where I shouted down your opinion. I simply said that what you do is not necessarily what's good for her. And yes, I do have a lot to say, probably because I can relate better to her than most. She and I have a lot more in common than you might imagine, which is why, even though I also tend to agree that getting a pedicure monthly is anything but a necessary expense (I happen to also do my own manicures and pedicures, for what it's worth), but your comment did seem to indicate that you don't have a true understanding of some of her personal care needs, and I felt that maybe someone should explain that it's not so simple as you made it out to be. Call it shouting down if you want to.

ChiTown Reader said...

I agree with Aaren. You need to control your food and entertainment budget. I also live in Chicago, have a mortgage in the city, am single, have student loan debt and credit card debt and am underemployed. However my salary is in the $40k range... My biggest problem with debt repayment has been my food/entertainment budget and gift giving, so I know where you come from. I started to contribute $50-100 per month to a gift fund to use for the gifts that come up year round. Also I bought a slow cooker and started to use it at home ( I am a horrible co0k) and have started to think, what do I buy when I go out for lunch? I love the chipotle burrito bowl. Can I make something similar? Love french fries but homemade are better. Just learn to make 3 meals and repeat, repeat.
We're single and social so we need to go out. Don't say no to all social events but stick with one a week possibly. Or suggest cheaper alternatives. I like to drink and eat but always suggest BYOB places and that saves me tons of money on overpriced wine/beer. Or I suggest a place that has some special that I know I can get while my friends drink their martinis :-)
Also your transportation and taxi costs are out of control. I live in the city and take the bus and train. My monthly bus/train pass is $86, each ride is $2.25 if you don't want to buy a monthly pass. There is no need to take a cab to meet friends for dinner/drinks.
The hair and pedicure is worked into the budget. If a woman feels bad about her looks, she will not exude the confidence necessary to get a new job.
Focus! You can do this!!! I'm cheering you on. Its hard but its worth it. If you don't focus now and try to get it done, you will never get out of debt because your expenses will continue to grow as your income does. You do deserve to take care of yourself but you also need to think of your future. Best of luck!

Anonymous said...

BTW, here is a bring to work breakfast idea. Go to Trader Joe's (there's one downtown) buy some of their awesome organic yogurt (large tub ~$2-3 and some granola ~$5= breakfast for at least 5 days for less than $8!!! I also eat this when I forget to bring my lunch to work. If anyone at work asks, I'm watching what I eat for a diet. Seems much less taboo to talk about than I'm watching my money :-)

Chitown said...

Yeah, I appreciate the frugal ideas but I am not taking scissors to my hair. It would be a mess.

Don't stop the comments. Whether you guys believe it or not, I am making progress mentally and financially.

Thanks so much for the support. =)

Delirious after work said...

Maybe you could work through your expenses one at a time (just say take one area initially) and think of a way to cut it. Then cut it. then when it is a habit, move onto the next. This is what I did to try and overcome the problem of being too tired from work at end of day to tackle everything !!!

Another idea is to work out your real hourly wage (your annual salary after tax - all expenses you wouldn't have if you didn't work and then divide that by the hours you work each year plus hours you spend travelling and time spent winding down from work etc...). Then when you spend money you can easily turn that into the number of hours you would have to spend in the office to get the money back ! I found this really helped in not spending money !!! "ehmm that thing I want = 2 hours in the office, actually maybe i don't want it that much !! lol"

Looking at your monthly updates March was a good one ! you almost broke even. I don't know the reality of things but I bet you could save money on dining out, work lunches, maybe transport, but then I don't want to say so as maybe you can't for whatever reason.

all the best with your battle.

Go Chitown !

gonna_make_it said...

You did find a way to cut down hair expenses so I think you should b proud of that. As far as manis and pedis think about how long you have to sit at work to make enough money to pay for it. Is a 30 min pedicure worth sitting at work for an hour??
I think the one real thing I learned from paying off debt is to really appreciate the things I do end up buying. I don't take anything for granted anymore. There are a lot of things I want.. Néw tv, new computer... Etc but I make do with what I have because I know that money can b better spent. Everytime u go out and spend $7 on a single drink think about what else that money could buy you or how satisfied you would feel seeing ur total debt go down by $7.

Chitown said...

I really love and appreciate all of the comments and suggestions.

I really like Delirious After Work's idea about taking one expense at a time and working on reducing it. Baby steps. =)