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Archive for August, 2012

August 2012

August 31st, 2012 at 01:43 am

This is a bit early it is only in the morning of the 31st of August here but I canít wait anymore.

Grocery - $389 (over $149.78)*
Home Phone - $14.95 (under $10.05)
Mobile - $20 (under $20.00)
Internet - $49.95 (under $0.05)
Fuel & Fare - $141.66 (under $58.34)
Health Insurance -$249.21 (under $0.79)
Entertainment -$185.60 (under $14.40)
Gifts -$120.47 (under $29.53)
Personal/Medical - $52.05 (over $22.05)
Clothing - $291.60 (over $251.60)*
DH Allowance -$100 (even)
DW Allowance - $60 (even)
Miscellaneous - $17.75 (under $12.25)

TOTAL = $1,673.02 (over $278.02)

*These are the culprits of the over spending this month. The grocery expense includes the $60 Costco membership fee. And the main over spending was in the clothing category. Basically we have used up our entire clothing budget for the year now. Overall, it is not too bad it just mean we canít go clothing shopping anymore until next year.

Today should be a NSD, that makes it 10 for the month. So another $100 into my Sunny Day Fund.

I've added $500 into the Holiday Fund and $1400 into the Household Fund. Also saved in $200 for anniversary in October.

New Laptop

August 30th, 2012 at 03:51 am

DH just got a new laptop. He found a good deal for only $279 (down from $449). He also used a $50 gift card he got from his sister last Christmas towards the purchase so it ended to be $229 out of his pocket. This purchase will come out of the household fund.

The old laptop still works (it is about 8 years old) we will give it to my mum. It will be good enough for her.

Anniversary Weekend Getaway

August 30th, 2012 at 01:42 am

I found and already booked a place to stay for our anniversary. We will be going south, about 3+ hours away from our place. The town is called Warrnambool, it is on the coast just pass The Great Ocean Road. It is known for whale watching, Iím hoping we will be able to see one, October is the end of the season though so Iím not expecting too much. The place we will be staying at is near an underground aquifer and so they have their own naturally heated geothermal spa, I canít wait to try that.

The overnight stay will cost $129 including breakfast, bottle of sparkling wine, unlimited access to the geothermal spa (they are normally $15 per person) and late check-out. This will leave us with $171 for gas, food and fun stuff that we would like to do. We will probably bring some food with us too.

Bored

August 29th, 2012 at 02:27 am

I'm bored right now, just waiting for this month to end so I can finalise August numbers. Had NSDs on Monday and Tuesday.

I'm starting to plan for our annivesary, which is in October. We will probably stay overnight somewhere. I think we could do it for $300 for everything. We both don't want to do anything big this year, we just want to go somewhere in our state that we haven't been to and just relax for the weekend. I will be saving $200 for it this month and another $100 next month.

I don't think we really need $2000 for christmas/anniversary (Goal #3) this year I think we can get away with $1000-$1200. We would rather save it for our overseas holiday next year.



Weekend spending

August 27th, 2012 at 05:44 am

Went to Costco and renewed our membership. End up spending just over $200 including the $60 membership fee. Most of the stuff I got was for gifts and the rest will come out of grocery budget. Also stopped by at a market for fruits and vegetables, spent $51.

The millionaire next door

August 23rd, 2012 at 03:00 am

Yesterday was NSD.

I'm currently reading The Millionaire Next Door. I caved and bought it for my kindle. I've always wanted to read it but could never find it in the library and did not want to pay $20+ for it. It's a lot cheaper in kindle now, last time I checked it was worth over $12 but last week it was down to $7.46 (AUD). I was happy to pay for that. I'm almost half through reading it so far so good. It is confirming that we are heading the right direction.

Hot water

August 20th, 2012 at 03:35 am

Just had a nice hot shower and it was great, no more sponge bath. We got our hot water unit fixed early this morning. The gas fitter/plumber came at 7 am this morning and he was done an hour later. All up we paid $1400, the labour was $270.

DH and I spent about 5 hours yesterday shopping for the unit and before that DH spent the day and night before researching and calculating (lol) about it. In the end we decided to go for the same the hot water storage and the same brand (Aquamax) as the old one but a newer model (the old one doesnít exist anymore, according to the plumber they got rid of them 10 years ago). We also opted for the stainless steel panel instead of the vitreous enamel. The stainless steel has double the warranty for 10 years, although the rest of the parts have only got 1 year warranty but that is standard. Price wise there wasnít that much about $150. Everyone we talked to says they are better. It was easier to transport it, with the vitreous enamel it had to standing up so the anode thingy wouldnít get damage.

Initially we were leaning towards the getting the continuous flow system because they are more energy efficient than the storage ones. The first sales lady we talked to said she has one at her new home and its heaven she just punch in the temperature on the controller and can have different temp in the shower to that in the kitchen. The one that we were looking at would have cost $1500. Then we found out that labour would cost at least $900, maybe more. It would not have been just an easy swap because we have an old house the pipes would need to be replace because they require different size and in some cases the gas meter will need to be replace too. Also we would have had to get an electrician to get an outlet for the electric ignitor, so if there is no power you wonít get any hot water. There were other also other issues that other people have told us about. DH calculated that it would only save us $70 per year, not enough really.

We managed to find a plumber through a sales person in one of the hardware store that we went to. He was highly recommended by him. After DH spoke to him we knew we didnít need to bother ringing around. He was very helpful and helped us decide to just get the same storage system. We knew his price was reasonable since another sales person that we spoke to (from a different whitegoods store) told us that his mother got one replaced recently and got quotes from plumbers ranging from $230 (could not do it for a while) to $500 and that we should expect around $300 for labour.

So after driving around for 5 hours we decided to get the unit late yesterday so that the plumber can install it early this morning. The darn thing ruined our weekend but at least it is now fix and hopefully we would not have to deal with it for many years to come.

Hot water tank is busted

August 18th, 2012 at 03:21 am

I had a shower this morning and it was freaking cold. Yikes! DH had to go out in the freezing cold to see if he could fix it. Not good, the pilot light is off and he couldn't light it up anymore. It might be time to get it replaced, it is about 15 years old, we have had it fixed/replaced a part about 6-7 years ago and some area have corroded and it's leaking. We both think that it might be better to just get a new system. I think last time we got the termostat replaced, it cost almost $400 for both parts and labour. I just had a quick google for a new one and we can get the cheapest one for just over $1000 fully installed. I think the one that we might want to get will be around $1500-$2000, it will be so much more efficient than our current one. The household fund will have to take a hit this month.

Payday

August 17th, 2012 at 12:01 pm

Yes!

Paid $2000 into the mortgage.
Current Balance = $125,255.25

Close to being under $125K Smile

Dividend Season

August 16th, 2012 at 03:10 am

This only comes twice a year. I love getting either the cheques or the statements in the mail itís like getting Christmas cards. Got the first statement yesterday for over $300 dollar, it was re-invested and got 54 more shares for it. I expect to get more of these statements in the next month or so.

Nothing else is happening here financially. I am just waiting for tomorrow, it will be PAYDAY! Iím looking forward to putting some money into the mortgage.

Good sign

August 15th, 2012 at 12:35 pm

Yesterdayís spending:
Groceries - $8.95
Train Pass - $50

DH came home pretty happy tonight. The company finally signed the contracts (only 6 weeks due) of his workmates. And they are now working on DHís contract and others whose contract is expiring mid next month. The contract will be for 2 years. We are trying not to celebrate too early but this is a very good sign for DH.

Today was a NSD Smile

NSD

August 14th, 2012 at 02:55 am

NSD yesterday - 6th for the month.

Today DH will have to get milk after work.

Clothes shopping

August 13th, 2012 at 08:34 am

Blow the budget yesterdayÖYikes! In the end we spent almost $300 on clothes. We went out yesterday to see if we could find the empanada maker, no luck. I actually talked to my mum this morning and she said she will get her friend to get her one overseas instead. She wonít be able to get it until November though.

Anyway back to the crazy clothes shopping, we decide since we were going to be out near the factory outlets centre that we would stop by and see if we could find DH new jeans. Couple of his jeans have now got holes, Iíve fixed the holes but he wonít be able to wear them out, just at home jeans now. He only got 3 left, one is a tiny bit tight and the other one is fading fast. He wears jeans on Monday and Friday to work (their casual day) so he does wear them a lot and on the weekends too. I think it was two months ago we went shopping for one but could not find one we liked at reasonable price so went away with nothing then. For some reason the sales this time around was so much better, so we end up going a bit crazy. Basically we have now used up our entire clothing budget for the year.

We got:
From Adidas 3 pairs of running socks for DH and 1 pair knee high socks for me, Iíve always wanted one. They were only $5 a pair. I like this brand because I know from past purchase they last at least 10 years whereas the cheaper one only last a couple. Since the cheaper ones would have cost around this price it was definitely good value for money. We also got a cap each.

I also found a shoe shop that sale mainly sport shoes like hiking, climbing, etc. I finally found a really good hiking shoes, got it for only $35, it was initially worth $100+ was reduced to $70 and then they had 50% off that price.

Was not planning to get one now but I found a dress that I thought was nice. I hate shopping for dresses; it is not something that I would look for unless I really have to. I saw it on the mannequin and decided to try it on, it fit really well so I got it. A friend of mine is getting married early next year so I already got a dress for it. I got it for $49, it actually said $59 on it but the lady gave it to me for $49 I donít know why. In the same store I also found a coat that will go well with the dress for only $39. Both of these items would have cost well over $100 each retail.

Then we finally got around to looking at jeans, we went to Levi Strauss store, luckily they were having 30% off on everything. DH got one for just over $60 and I found one for myself too. My one was definitely not necessary but I got it for a nice price for $34.

We also stopped at Gap and found another jean for DH for only $19, not as nice as the Leviís but for $19 itís good enough. And I also found him a shirt for also $19.

So yeah it was a long day shopping. No more clothing shopping for us until next year.

Tonight

August 11th, 2012 at 02:53 pm

It's now after midnight and we just got home not long ago from my DH's workmate's house. We were invited to their new house for a low key housewarming party. There were only another 5 people (3 people from DHís work and spouses). It was a nice dinner, we got to taste some yummy Indian dishes. They are originally from India so we got introduced to some new dishes that we have never tried or couldn't get from a typical Indian restaurant. It was very nice, I'm sure they made sure they didn't m it too hot. It was definitely at my maximum heat level. DH however just loved it and actually could go hotter. He loves hot food.

We also got to watch a bit of a Bollywood movie, without subtitles, it made for a good viewing. It was a comedy so it was pretty funny, unfortunately we couldnít stay to finish watching it, it got too late by then. It was a very good night in the end the wife gave me a pouch/bag (made from a very colourful material). I didnít open it until we got home and it had an apple and a little gold flower trinket (donít really know how to describe itÖlol). I just google this and I think it should have been us giving this gift as a housewarming present. Few days ago I told DH to ask his work friend if we could bring something and all he told DH was ďjust your wifeĒ. Anyway, we just brought a bottle of wine from our collection. We at least know that he drinks.

It was a great night. Itís good to meet new people, the spouses, Iíve actually have meet DHís workmates before.

On another news, today (or should that be yesterday) was a NSD. We will do the grocery shopping tomorrow if we can actually get up. We are staying up late to watch the Olympics (sailing and hockey is on at the moment).

Last night

August 10th, 2012 at 05:02 am

We went to my mumís place again last night. She called me while I was making dinner. Iíve asked her to get me something from her work to give as a birthday present to a friend. Her birthday is not until next month but Iím not sure I will see her next month so I will be giving it to her tonight, it just happened weíve organised a get together few weeks ago, so it came just in time. I gave my mum $10 for it.

While there I helped my mum make some more empanadas, she is getting more and more orders now. She is actually finding it hard to keep up. Last night she was trying to make 120, one order. She got a friend who does cake decorations of some sort and has an online business for it. Anyway she asked my mum if she wants to put her empanada on her website, my mum actually said no because she is afraid that she wonít be able to do it. Iím actually thinking of getting her an empanada maker, Iím not sure where to get it or if it is even available here in Australia. It will be a good birthday/Christmas present for her. The bread maker has help her make the dough but she still needs to roll it out. Iíve actually got her to try the pasta maker but she didnít like it because itís too thin. And our pasta maker is hopeless you pretty much need two people to use it. Itís alright for making small amount of pasta but I think it will get tiresome if you need to make a lot of it.

Also she asked me if I wanted some instant coffee, this was one thing that I wanted to get at Costco, we are half way to our last jar. So I said yes! She got a box of 6/200g jars of Nescafe Gold Blend. She got all of them for $40 so less than $7 a jar. I just looked on-line and they are around $16-18 a jar at the supermarket. At Costco a similar type would probably be around $13-14. She got them from another friend who works for Nestle. Apparently the customer/s didnít like them because of the jar design; I think they got consumers complaining about it. I can see why from just looking at it the jar is too top heavy and would be hard to grip (esp for small hands like mine) when opening it. I got two. The jar donít bother me I will just put it into my coffee canister once I open it. Also score a bag of powdered milk, also from Nestle, DH use powdered milk all the time for making yogurt. I will give her $20 for all of them next time I see her. It will come out of the grocery budget.

COSTCO

August 9th, 2012 at 06:52 am

Iím starting to think about getting a Costco membership again, ours expired 6 months ago. We are running out of things that we stocked up 6 months ago so I think it is time to go there again. It cost $60 p/a for a membership here. We are doing well with our grocery budget this year so I should be able to get the money out from that budget.

Not quite a NSD today because I asked DH to get me some strepsile lollies. I run out last night. They help with my coughing fit that seems to come on at night. Iíve been getting this itchy throat lately (it has been a week now) and they help to numb it.

NSD

August 8th, 2012 at 12:21 pm

Had two NSDs in a row, yesterday and today.

Nothing else happened today. the weather was terrible, total opposite to that of yesterday. I kept myself warm today by jumping on the exercise bike.

Aldi and cleaning

August 7th, 2012 at 02:48 am

DH stopped by at ALdi last night to get milk, muesli, can of tomatoes, chickpeas and other pantry items. All up he spent $27.60.

I forgot to mention here that I received my handheld steam cleaner that I bought online few weeks ago now. I got two and I will give one to my mum as part of her birthday present later this month. I used it today to clean the filter of the range hood (exhaust fan above the stove). It worked really well the grease just got blasted off. I used to have to boil water to clean it and took a bit of time scrubbing. It really cut down the cleaning time and I think I can get away only cleaning it twice a month instead of every few days. Cleaning it every few days helped cut down on the build-up because once there are a bit of grease build up it took a lot more effort to clean it but I think with the steam cleaner it cut through it so much easier.

Anyway, hoping today will be a NSD. Just doing a bit of cleaning today, nice weather outside so I might do a bit more gardening later, I did a bit yesterday too.

August 2012 Mortgage Payment

August 6th, 2012 at 03:33 am

Our monthly mortgage payment went through today.
Paid = $1218.00
Interest =$666.00 (yikes!)
Principal = $552.00
Current Balance = $127,255.25

DH got me up around 4:30am this morning to watch the 100m semis. This is his favourite event because he used to compete nationally in it when he was younger. Afterwards we went back to bed for an hour and got up again around 6:40 to watch the final, thank goodness the event only takes 10 seconds. The showboating however took so much longer. After that DH just went straight to work, I on the other hand went back to sleep and didnít get up until after 10am, oh my Smile

Weekend

August 5th, 2012 at 07:13 am

The rib eye steak for dinner last night was so good. It was more than an inch thick that I had to finish cooking it in the oven. It was cook to a perfect medium well. The garlic and mushroom sauce worked really well. DH was glad he didnít have to go out to get the chips and it saved us $3.50.

Today we went to my mumís place to pick up some sausage rolls, a friend of my mum works for a big bakery company. They actually supply bread to Aldi around here. I think they get the rejects/left over and for some reason she gives a lot to my mum and in turn since my mum canít eat it all and donít really like sausage rolls she gives it to us. She also takes some to her church and work. She also gets a lot of bread. Last week I managed to score a whole fruit loaf, I think it got rejected because it was slightly squash.

We also end up having lunch there, it is very rare that we go to my mum and that she wonít have anything for us to eat, she is always cooking. And after lunch my mum was cooking empanadas, someone was picking up an order of 30 empanadas. This makes me laugh, apparently this guy has been ordering 30 empanadas every week for the last month, I think he is addicted. There were some rejects that split a bit that we got to eat. She also cooked some extra for us to take home. And we got more take away food from our lunch leftover that DH can take to work tomorrow.

Tonight Iím thinking of making risotto with mushrooms, I want to use them up because they donít last long.

Oh, today should be a NSD, I just realised. We were actually planning to go for a jog after lunch we actually had our running gear on but the weather got really bad this afternoon so we just came straight home. We also planned to stop at Aldi for milk but it can wait until tomorrow, lucky we did because DH just had enough time to mow the lawn before it started raining, I didnít think he was going to make it.

So, we only spent just over $100 this weekend, nice start to the month.

Grocery Shopping

August 4th, 2012 at 07:22 am

We went grocery shopping today.

Spent $66.95 at the market, bought mainly meat at the market and some deli items, also got some apples, pears and lemons for only 99cents a kilo. We should have enough meat for the next 3 weeks. Got a really good deal on really nice cuts of eye fillets, was normally $22 a kilo but was reduced to $10 a kilo. We end up getting the last two pieces for just over $8. Will cook one tonight for dinner, DH and I will share one because they are too big I donít think I could finish one all by myself. We like meat and eat it most days but we try to not eat too much, big portion. DH wants to have it with some potato chips but I forgot to get some potatoes. Heís thinking of going to get some cooked ones at the fish and chip shops but I think I will try to convince him to just have it with roasted pumpkin and steam carrots and peas. And I can make gravy with garlic and mushrooms and to make DH happy will put some chillies in it. Letís see if I can convince him to not bother getting the hot chips.

We also went to the Asian shop, got lots of vegetables; couple different variety of mushrooms, okra, baby eggplants, ginger, and a lot of greens. We also stocked up on some essentials like sushi rice, nori, coconut milk, egg noodles, etc. All up we spent $35.17.

August 2012 Spending Plan

August 3rd, 2012 at 08:22 am

Grocery - $240
Home Phone - $25
Mobile - $20
Internet - $50
Fuel & Fare - $200
Health Insurance -$250
Entertainment -$200
Gifts -$150.00
Personal/Medical - $30
Clothing - $40
DH Allowance -$100
DW Allowance - $60
Miscellaneous - $30

TOTAL = $1,395

July 2012 Spending

August 2nd, 2012 at 11:23 am

Grocery - $234.84 (over $4.84)
Utilities - $178.49 (under $1.55)
Home Phone - $21.57 (under $3.43)
Mobile - $20 (under $20.00)
Internet - $49.95 (under $0.05)
Fuel & Fare - $143.76 (under $26.24)
Health Insurance -$249.21 (under $0.79)
Entertainment -$222.80 (over $52.80)
Gifts -$50.00 (even)
Personal/Medical - $44.80 (under $15.20)
Clothing - $15.00 (under $25.00)
DH Allowance -$100 (even)
DW Allowance - $75 (even)
Miscellaneous - $1.98 (under $28.02)

TOTAL = $1,387.40 (under $62.60)

Weíve had 3 months in a row under budget. The last two months have been a pretty low spend month which is great. And this month could be the lowest for the year since we wonít have any utilities bill due, although as usual the entertainment will be a lot since it is my mumís birthday later this month. I will post the Aug budget later.

We had 12 NSDs in July so that will be $120 to my Sunny Day Savings.

$1,400 into the Holiday Fund

$1,490 into the Household Fund

The ugly bit was the Exercise/Xmas fund I only put in $15 for the whole month. We were both sick for almost 2 weeks so no energy to exercise.