I come to you shame-faced and more than a little disappointed in my progress for September.
September was a busy traveling month for me. I was barely home.
The month started with a visit by two of my best friends from business school for the Labour Day weekend. That was an expensive long weekend! Probably the most expensive one in a while since my friends were foodies who wanted to try as much of the cool food/desserts in Toronto as possible. Including one of my favourite Canadian meals, also probably the most unhealthy thing one can eat.
Poutine is the most delicious heart-attack-in-a-box ever!
Anyway, a few days after my friends left, I moved back home. However, within a few days of moving back, I left again. On a long weekend trip to visit a friend in Montreal. Then the weekend after that I went on a five day trip to attend my best friend’s wedding in the US. I saved greatly on transportation to visit these friends.
I saved money on the travel costs to visit my friends (more on that later) and, for the first trip, was actually pretty good on minizing spending once I arrived. However, for my friend’s wedding I spent more. Mainly because of gift-giving. I didn’t skip on the gift for my best friend and her husband. Also, I treated myself to a couple extra purchases there (namely the always-expensive fro-yo and a nice meal).
My Pinkberry fro-yo was great but I think my $6.57 could have been spent much better. Or not spent at all! This is my dilemma whenever I buy Starbucks coffee, coffee from independent coffee shops or little treats such as frozen yoghurt from specialty shops. I always think how I could have bought a meal for the same price as one little cup of coffee. A meal would have been much more filling and much less of a waste of money. That’s my Third World Mentality coming through. But seriously, if I never had to meet clients in coffee shops I would hardly go to coffee shops. They are a money drain!
Moving right along!
I thought August’s spending on dining out was bad but September got it beat by far.
I am beginning to accept that dining is the category that benefits from my extreme frugality in other areas. I save extra hard in other areas so I can put a little more towards dining without feeling too guilty. Because I love trying new food. So I’m ok with spending a little more on dining, now that I am earning more money. However, I would like to keep my spending in the category to maximum $250 per month and ideally $150 or less.
I had only one week in the condo in September but I spent a whopping $62 on groceries. To be honest though, some of that was money I gave my Mum to buy me some things at the supermarket once I moved back home.
All in all, minus rent, my total spending for September was $2133, which is just slightly less than August’s total. But September’s total includes only around $645 of interest payments for August, compared to the closer to $1000 figure it had been for the previous 3 months.
Also, unlike in August, in September I did not put much money toward debt. My spending total was around the same but my incoming cash flow was less in September than in previous months. So I was hesitant to throw extra money at debt.
As of the end of September, here is where things stand.
Oh, before I get to that, I decided to use the $1.1275 USD-CAD exchange rate to keep track of my progress from last year July til now. So my 2013 debt numbers will change a bit from this post onwards. Of course, now that I am using the $1.1275 rate though, looking at the currency history for this week, I am wondering if I shouldn’t just use a rate like $1.3 just to be safe…Hmmm, I will revisit this rate in 6 months.
Also, the credit card balances are not overdue. Just haven’t paid them yet but will do so in full before the balance due dates.
Ok, here is the latest:
|Name||July 31, 2013||September 30, 2014|
|Mastercard||$6,123 CAD||$57 CAD|
|Visa||$8,653 CAD||$167 CAD|
|B-school loan||$96,800 USD
|Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP) loan||$20,931 CAD||$18,730 CAD|
|Student Line of Credit (LOC)||$9,678 CAD||$0|
|TOTAL||$154,527 CAD||$115,652 CAD|
August’s balance at the same rate was $118,011. So that means that in September I paid off $2359, which is below my monthly minimum goal of $2500 – hence the reason for the shame-faced greeting.