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Lots of Rambling Thoughts

October 12th, 2008 at 07:29 pm

Yesterday we filled up our gas tank at $2.89 a gallon at Costco. I really hope it keeps dropping like this. It's freeing up about $50 a month in the gas budget at the moment. It's only been a few months since I was paying nearly $4 per gallon. If this keeps up I'll be adding the difference left over each month to our vacation savings account. Which will make us reach our goal that much faster.

This is the first time that we'll be doing a fully cash vacation ever (not that we haven't tried, but we didn't fully succeed before) and I want there to be no reason at all to fall back on excess credit card spending, so I'm trying to save up 1/3 more money than I think we'll actually need. Anything left over will go to seed the next big vacation, which we'd like to be a trip to Italy in five years, but that may be a pipedream. We'll see.

I'm not saying we won't use our credit cards on this trip at all. They are convenient and we will, but we will keep track of every dime and not go over what we have in savings and then pay it back immediately when we get home. There's a big difference between using cards on vacation and abusing cards on vacation.

But so far, condo is paid for (free from Mom), airfare is paid for (free with airmiles), and we're saving now for food we will eat and the tickets to get into the theme park. I've got over $500 and aiming for about $1500.

Fortunately DH has hit that point in the year, for the first time ever, where they stop taking out FICA (I think it's FICA) tax. So for the next 12 weeks we'll be getting quite a bit of extra money in his paychecks. $800 will go the vacation fund, and $800 will go to the emergency fund. The rest will go on debt.

I know that I should probably put more on debt, but our repayment is going at a pace that I'm happy with and honestly we've never had this kind of freedom before, really. It's been nose to the grindstone for so long and this last year of ease has made it so much nicer.

In return for this, though, we've buckled down on all the excess spending, especially the eating out. We had gotten to a ridiculous amount of meals out each month. Probably around $400, going out twice a week or more. That is a lot of unnecessary and wasteful expense. Almost every meal is at home now, though.

Oh, I found a box full of stuff we were given at Christmas from our extended family. Most of it was that kind of stuff that you will never use and people just give you because they feel obligated to give you something, but it's never something useful. Anyway, tucked inside was $20 worth of McDonald's gift certificates. So that's two free meals out if we order off the dollar menu, that I can save for a couple of crazy town days and not be tempted to spend real money from the budget on.

Okay, guess that's about it then.

1 Responses to “Lots of Rambling Thoughts”

  1. fern Says:

    I hardly ever eat out anymore either. I used to indulge in Boston Market at lunch, but they've raised their prices and i think it's too much to pay $8 for lunch.

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