Wish I could beef up this paltry number, but hey, it’s all Brad and I could muster up for March. With our big federal tax payment looming over us, we had to extract from this month’s saving which left us with a mere $21.89. We couldn’t bear to see a big fat zero, so we left this little bit to remind us that at least it’s money saved not spent. Obviously, not enough to have much impact on our debt this month.
We’ve run the gamut of emotions this past week—frustrated, disappointed, angry—but at the end of the day, we just have to accept it and move on. Next month, we’ll have to cycle through a couple of paychecks to set us back up in saving mode. First thing we need to do is replenish our emergency savings that we had to partially dip into for paying taxes. But it’s not all bad news, Brad’s freelance work is finally starting up again, which is already uplifting our money saving spirits. Our pace has slowed but not completely stalled.
To check our savings progress since July 1, 2011, click here. To view our debt reduction since July, 2011, click here. And to better understand how we’re doing this, click here. I will post new debt totals Monday. Until then, have a great weekend!
It’s the final week of March, but instead of our usual scrambling to finalize our monthly savings, we’re just trying to figure out how to come up with a hefty federal tax payment due in 3 weeks. So why did we not see that coming? Unfortunately, we were bad accountants with my husband’s freelance work. On the positive side, he earned more this past year than in the previous year, yet we did not withhold enough for taxes. That is another reality with self employment—you are responsible for your own tax withholding. I take that for granted since I work for a company and receive a paycheck that already has my taxes deducted.
In an effort to take away something positive from this, we feel like we learned a valuable lesson in tax record keeping. I don’t think we’ll make this mistake again. For now, we’ll have to dip into our emergency savings, plus travel savings, and probably this month’s savings. But no matter what, we will NOT use our credit card! After paying it off in December, we’re not resorting back to bad habits. We know how to lay low with spending, eat on the cheap and come up with the cash. We’ll let you know how we fare!
It’s that time of year when everyone is prepping for summer travels, and I’m starting to feel the pains of not joining in the fun. Until July 1, 2012, we’ve committed to not spend money on big trips, but the reality is, we might extend that promise beyond July. When I added up our expenses from the June 2011 to June to 2012, travel, particularly international, was a huge money drain on our bank account. Brad and I love seeing the world, but it’s not that cheap to do so. We’ve been rocking the savings and debt payoffs over the past 8 months, so we’re in the mindset to hold off on international travel a while longer than our spending lockdown end date. At least I have my photos from previous trips to reminisce and fuel my interest in future trips around the globe. I’m using this time of no travel to really think about where I want to explore next. So by the time we’re ready to globe-trot again, we’ll have had plenty of time to research it.
This is just the kind of savings we needed to regain some spark in our Operation Debt Reduction mission. Living on $30 for the last 10 days of the month help lay the path to BIG savings! Obviously, we would have had a pretty big number even if we hadn’t created that challenge, but it’s surprising how much money can waste away in a 10 day period if we’re not paying attention. As always, the majority of this, $2,000 to be exact, is going toward our current lowest debt which is my student loan. And that is being applied on top of my monthly minimum payment. As I wrote in last month’s savings post, we have started a separate savings account for travel that is on our summer calendar. We will apply February’s remaining savings of $382.28 to that fund. Of course, this savings account will also act as an additional emergency fund if we need it to.