I am thirty years old and I still work as an assistant production manager. I’m debt free, live in one of the most expensive cities in America, and my yearly salary is $53,560.
Saving & Spending
Who maxed out her IRA this month?
That’s right, this girl. Take that Money Manifesto for IRA 2014 – nailed it.
I actually anticipated really being squeezed for cash this month and somehow that wound up not the case at all.
Since I’m a crazy person and I pay my rent way ahead, I sent out my last rent check for the year this week. I’m really intent on building up my emergency savings and starting a mortgage fund, so I’m moving back in with my parents for a while when my lease is up in January.
There are no words for how much I’m looking forward to NOT paying rent for a while.
There are lots of words for how I feel about moving back in with my parents, but for now I’m going to concentrate on being grateful for the opportunity to save some cash and remain well aware that I can move out as soon as the arrangement stops working for either of us.
Also, I added $300 to my emergency savings! Not a lot, but more than I’ve added in a long time.
Part of the reason I was ready to get hit by expenses was paying for a flight, hotels and tickets to Universal Studios in Florida for next month. I’m going to go geek it up at The Wizarding World of Harry Potter with one of my best friends for a few days in November. I knew it would be pretty expensive, but the prices just kept creeping higher and higher than expected.
I wanted to use frequent flier miles on United to get there – between our two work schedules there was no way to do that. Lame, United, lame.
When we first started looking, there was a pretty good tickets + hotel room deal for several days for $600. By the time we actually committed to going, that deal was long gone. We were both pretty intent on figuring out how you get to enter the park an hour early, which seems to be only by staying in a hotel in Universal Studios… so that jacked up the price considerably.
All said and done, the 4 day trip was coming out close to $1,000… before we even leave, so that’s not accounting for all the butterbeer and pumpkin juice we are absolutely going to drink.
Thank goodness for good rewards cards though, amiright? Turns out with my United Mileage Plus I could also apply those points to reduce the cost of the fare, so while it’s still a far cry from free $300 was a lot more manageable than $600.
My Barclaycard will cover my portion of the hotel. All in all, I managed to cut the cost of the trip in half.
It was a much calmer month too because I was working like a crazy person for the majority of the month. The one full weekend I had off, I went camping with my family, which didn’t cost much.
I actually think my largest expense this month was picking up a bottle of vodka and a dog toy for my cousin’s dog’s first birthday/Halloween party.
To make life even better, I was doing much better on the side hustle side this month too. I finally got paid for my last props job. I picked up some freelance work at FinCon that started up.
Side Hustling Numbers:
Stage Management Gig: $60
Freelance Work: $57.36
Stock Dividends: $16.96
Wondering how to do this yourself? I use Mint to fill out 95% of this form and you can too.
Most Popular Post of the Month: 114 Side Hustles: Ways to Make More Money (surprise)
My Favorite Post to Write This Month: You Can Do More Than You Think You Can
Elsewhere on the Web: 101 Cheap Living Tips and Ideas for Smart Families at Scratch Wireless (Tip #65)
What happened to my goal to write a guest post on a finance site and a theater site? Actually, I nailed it. They’re just not up yet. So here’s to hoping I pull it off next month too.
Entirely Unrelated to Personal Finance
I just finished watching Ugly Betty. I loved how positive it was, but now I’m looking for something new to binge watch. Suggestions?
Someone introduced me to this incredible band called The Mountain Goats. I’m a little obsessed with them now and have decide that their song This Year is the anthem of 2014 for me. I’ve been listening to it pretty much on repeat for days. Favorite line: “I am going to make it through this year if it kills me.” Also, the music video is charmingly bizarre and weirdly Purge like… even if I am the only person on earth who liked that movie.
Start looking for a job that doesn’t give me an ulcer every day. Seriously.
Figure out how my health insurance works.
Buy at least $1,000 in stock. Get my emergency fund much closer to $4,000. This should be pretty do-able since I DON’T have to pay rent next month – especially if I do manage to rent out my place on AirBnB while I go on vacation in a few weeks.