At least one more vacation photo to share after this one. The above is from arguably my favorite day of the trip. Where are we? What did we do? How did we do it? (Hint: the odd “soil” should giveaway a nearby attraction.)
But anyway… I always like to just dive right in, so back to the December Monthly Expenses. Like every month prior in 2016, this is only my spending and no one else in the household. Current target is under $1450 per month.
Monthly Expense Report
|Auto||$945||Snow tires! Saving requires you to be alive!|
|Housing||$925||To be adjusted, upwards, Jan-2017|
|Gifts||$440||Spendy, but apparently I am a great gifter|
|Travel||$275||Flights for wedding trip next April|
|Groceries + Restaurants||$150||I went a little spendy, NEVER shop hungry.|
|Debt||$135||9 payments remaining… then no debt!|
|Hobby||$55||Upping my beer making game… post-FI business?|
|Phone||$45||And no changes here|
|Total||$3020||January please come soon!|
I knew going into the new car purchase back in July I would need to budget for snow tires. It was part of my spending decision actually. And with a 45-mile round trip commute, on back roads, my safety is a top priority. There is no point in having large bank accounts if you aren’t alive to use ’em! (Maybe I should take attack exercise with the same motive)
I admit, I spent a small fortune on gifts this year. But, I also did it all in one afternoon, and didn’t waste time driving to stores and buying lunch while “out shopping.” And apparently, the gifts I did pick were stellar! It was a small family gathering, but I was top gift picker of that day. It’s nice when people genuinely enjoy what you give them, instead of over-consuming wastefulness and associated pleasantries. (*deadpan* Yes, this is what I always wanted *deadpan*)
Post-Thanksgiving I also made my return to a fulfilling hobby: brewing beer!
— zen¢ents (@zen_CENTS) November 26, 2016
And during that brew, discovered a few missing pieces to my process. Luckily, there was still time to ask for a few gift cards to enable the expansion of this hobby. Going to be cranking out some good, and interesting, ales in 2017. (Also thinking, all this practice may lead to some fun jobs come FIRE).
Net Worth Update
Drum roll please… (wah-wah!)
Despite the market rally (~2%), and despite a FAT BONUS(!), I still couldn’t catch-up after some big expenses during 2016. In the end, December was up 10% over the previous month, but roughly 15% short of my year end goal!
I have already laid out my 2017 goals, and the plan is more aggressive with no reset for the 2016 gap. I will really need to up my side-hustle income game to make it happen. (Thinking eBay, Craigslist… etsy?!)
This expense report won’t be my yearly wrap-up, but I will say I am proud of how I finished 2016 financially. After only 20 months on the FIRE train, I have not dropped back into spend-happy ways. Onward into 2017!