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January 2015 Updates

January 2nd, 2015 at 12:32 am

I finally got around to updating my pages.
2014 was a pretty good year for saving and budgeting. My Savings Rate and Net Worth increased despite not yet completing the 2014 year IRA contributions. That remainder will just have to go on the 2015 saving rate, similar to last year.

2014 was also a great year for losing quite a lot of weight, 56 lbs. Since buying a bicycle last summer I have been able to keep off the weight with a continued sensible diet and exercise regimen. I'm still walking and trying to stick with a low carb, low fat diet. I have dusted off the old weight bench, and started doing some light-weight exercises during the cold months. Hopefully this will help strengthen my core muscles which will help my cycling. I did manage to get out on x-mas day to ride for 2 hours, because the weather cooperated. The weather won't be cooperating this weekend, so no cycling, unless I bundle up like Ralphie's little brother in "A Christmas Story".

August Updates

September 14th, 2014 at 11:04 pm

Yeah, I'm really late at updating pages for last month.

On the Investment Page my cash allocation dropped a couple percentage points because of two reasons. Equities advanced again for another month. I also added two small purchases, which continues my slow monthly increase in Real Assets allocation. I added a cheap steel producer and a base metals ETF.

I got three surprises / snowflakes in the mail. They were little mail-in-rebates of $6.44 twice and a $3.39. I added then to a local Credit Union Savings Account. They were from something I submitted last spring and completely forgot about. It's great getting money in the mail!

For the month of August my Grocery, HBA, and other little misc spending came slightly over budget, so it was a pretty good month for budgeting.

My sciatica is finally going away, and I am trying to get back on track with exercise and watching the diet. With the weather finally moderating I'm getting more bicycle time. I went out twice today and got in a couple hours of riding time.

7-20 Weekly Spending and Sciatica Updates

July 20th, 2014 at 06:15 pm

My grocery spending was right on budget this past week. I was able to get out and walk through the grocery store Friday night and today without too much pain. I then went to Kohls today, but the pain in my back and right leg became too much. After sitting down on one of the little benches in the shoe department to alleviate the pains, I just decided to leave without making a purchase.

At the urging of some of the contributors here, I have started some stretching exercises yesterday and this morning. I am going real slow with them, and starting out very conservatively. I also was able to do a couple of very short 15 min. rides on my new bicycle yesterday and today without hardly any pain. Because the pains have not completely gone away, I'm afraid of aggravating that dang sciatic nerve. I imagine the road to recovery is going to take some time.

07-13 Past Week Spending

July 17th, 2014 at 01:03 am

My weekly spending was way under budget this past week mainly because I was blind sided with a bout of sciatica. It caused a halt to most shopping, because of the pain shooting down from my back into my right leg.

The pain became so unbearable, it caused a trip to the Emergency Room, then to two other doctors. Hopefully, the new meds I am taking now will help it subside. I am just now getting able to go back to work after missing a week. Fortunately I have already met my medical deductible and annual out of pocket caps, so the 3 doctors, six x-rays, and the ER visit won't cost me anything.

But this has also interfered with my diet and exercise regimen, and temporarily put a halt to riding my new bicycle. Hopefully, I'll be back in the saddle soon.

07-06 Past Week Spending

July 6th, 2014 at 10:03 pm

I went over budget on groceries this past week for a couple reasons. I usually have a hard time staying on budget during the Kroger Mega Sales. I need to slow down on contributing to the stockpile, and really need to continue depleting it.

The 4th of July Holiday has an impact on the grocery budget also. I had relatives over for a great cookout. As a consolation I now have enough grilled meats and various salads for lunches for at least a week.

I also had to do some extra spending for some bike accessories. I spent about a $100 at a sporting goods store on a new helmet, a pump, and a lock, etc. I did manage to use a $20 off $100 store coupon.

And speaking of my new bike, I am really loving getting back into riding again, even though it's just in the big neighborhood next to mine. I'm getting plenty of exercise and slowing increasing my endurance.

6-22 Week Spending and Shopping

June 22nd, 2014 at 03:25 pm

I came in right at On-Budget this past week for groceries, HBA, and other consumables. I would have been well below budget if not for an impulse buy yesterday. I went up to a bike shop in the city. It just happens to be across the street from a Whole Foods Market. I suddenly decided to stop in, and sample and buy some of their great cheeses (I should have ate breakfast before leaving the house). I also picked up some organic baby spinach for this weekend salads.

On the rebound home I decided to stop at my favorite clothing store for some more work shirts. I got 3 polo style knit shirts for $12.00 at the Goodwill Outlet. They didn't have any Shorts in my size, so I have an excuse to stop in again in a week or two.

5-17 New Budget and Savings Plan Pages

May 18th, 2014 at 12:44 am

I finally got around to creating the new pages. With all the rain today I wasn't able to get any yard work done. So, I also worked on the Investment Plan page today. It's still a Work In Progress though. In fact all three of them will need more tweaking.