July 1st marked our first year anniversary of early retirement. It was fastest year, yet many slow days with a toddler and an infant. Our spending is not normal. This is the year of paying Cobra, giving birth and the pandemic. The first two contributed to an increase in expenses while the pandemic probably decrease our expenses. It is hard to say if our spending will stay consistent. I don’t know what a “normal” year will look like.
In July, we spent, $2,341.59
Groceries – $739.16
Groceries continue to be on top of our spending. This month, we decided to eat more plant based recipe. We watched Forks Over Knives and changed our diet to eliminate most meat. We are eating more plat based / whole foods and limit our meat to once or twice a week. This change is probably the reason of the increase because we don’t have a go-to recipes. We have been have been experimenting with ingredients. Maybe we will be better on this once we accumulate some bulk ingredients.
Electronics – $491.32
Mr. MMD got a new iPhone. I got a new one last December and he’s been using my sister’s old iPhone 6. It is no longer charging. He finally got a new iPhone SE. He returned his old iPhone back for a rebate, but we won’t know the rebate amount until Apple gets the phone.
Home Improvement – $404.16
I am making some roman shades for the kids bedroom and their playroom. There are 4 windows in total. I bought a black out insulated windows and drapery fabrics and some materials needed for the shades. We finally installed one for MBP’s bedroom. It’s not professional looking, but it does the job. I also didn’t add the pull mechanism yet because I don’t want the kids to be playing with the strings. This is good for now and it is a lot better than the former curtains.
Two of our carbon monoxide and fire alarm detector also expired, so we bought a new one. That beeping was really annoying, especially when it happened at nap times. Oh well, we know now that these alarms expires every 7 years.
Others – $706.95
The rest are pretty normal expenses. There are monthly expenses like 529 college plan and HOA dues. I also split our utility bills as a category for each bill. I separated electric and gas as 1 bill, sewer, internet and mobile phone as another. We also have some discretionary expenses and bought some toys and kids supplies and we had some fast food take out because I’m craving for it.
This is the second year that we celebrated 4th of July in an unincorporated county. It is legal to have some fireworks here at certain times, unlike in the city. HOA frowned upon it, but the neighborhood doesn’t seem to care. Last year, we were invited to a party in our block. I basically just walked around and our neighbor invited us. This year, there were no parties but all our neighbors were out in their front porch. We set up some chairs and watched our neighbors fired up some fireworks. MBP enjoyed it. It was hard to tell a 3 year old to keep 6ft apart from the other kids though, but we tried to make sure that we keep the social distance. AHP slept through all the fireworks while our furbaby thought that it was the end of the world.
Overall July was great considering that we are still in a lockdown. Maybe we were just getting used to this new normal and our expectations were low. It was a bit more expensive, but not alarming.
Here’s a recap to our spending in 2020:
- January – $2,471.5
- February – $2,192.44
- March – $1,685.85
- April – $8,666.55
- May – $2,059.62
- June – $1812.03
- July – $2,341.59
And here is the breakdown of our expenses in July
|Groceries||739.16||We are changing our diet ot be more plant based. At some point, we're hoping to optimize this.|
|Electronics & Software||491.32||Mr. MMD got a new iPhone|
|Home Improvement||404.16||2 fire and carbon monoxide alarm and materials for roman shaes|
|529 College Fund||200|
|Electric and Gas||86.41||Trending down so far|
|Shopping||68.34||Batteries, iPhone case and toothbrush head|
|Sewer||60.16||I started another category to divide our utilities to what it is|
|Household Supplies||59.54||Cleaning supplies and toilet paper|
|Baby Supplies||29.99||Some supplies for MBP and AHP|
|Fast Food||28.41||Take out from KFC because I was craving for it|
|Mobile Phone||15.91||Our very cheap plan for 2 lines in Xfnity Mobile|
|Toys||14.97||Some more toys/books for MBP|
|Alcohol & Bars||13.59||Some craft beer for Mr MMD. I'm still not drinking because I'm still nursing and it's just easier that way|