February’s report card: A

It’s been a while since I gave myself an A for a month-end financial report card.

While I could wax on about how some of my spending was NOT in line with my budget, I could also boast that working my butt off has helped me be able to spend more, and still finish February with a small surplus.

This month, I overspent in the following areas:

  • Groceries, by a whopping $137 (pure laziness)
  • Home Decor, by $50
  • Public Transit, by $42
  • Dining Out, by $31

Here’s where I gained ground:

  • underspent in car rental by $45 (hope to see more of that in the future)
  • underspent in home maintenance by $30
  • underspent $11 in bank fees (that’s the interest on the LoC dropping like a rock…)
  • underspent cell phone expense by $25
  • changed internet package, saved $27
  • earned $833 more than budgeted with part-time gig
  • received reimbursement of some medical expenses for $680
  • received $125 gift from my step-mother for helping her search, screen and find a tenant for her apartment.

Oh, and I really overspent on debt reduction: planned $400, and actually put $2200 against my outstanding consumer debt. That’s where a person really wants to overspend! My outstanding debt is now just under $800. The next time the CIBC posts the interest and request for payment, presumably March 10, I’ll knock it out. I’ll see it sit at zero until April 30, when I’ll have to settle the score between my taxes owed for 2010, and the amount remaining in my financial parking lot. So, the March event won’t be a TKO, but it’ll be a crippling blow, none-the-less.

As I reported earlier, I’m going to use my cash on hand to pay for my new bike. This will leave me a bit short when my taxes are due. The shortfall will come out of my line of credit, and that will be the true indication of my existing consumer debt at that date.  Meanwhile, I will continue to plow any money I can into my financial parking lot, to make the hit on the line of credit as minimal as possible come April 30.

On a similar front, I still have an “account receivable” from my eldest daughter’s prescription expenses. Her employer finally connected her to the HR department, and she will submit her drug claim this week. That $540 will come in handy. Man, what an unnecessary hassle that has been.

Emotionally I’d say this has been a difficult month. I’ve felt tired and overwhelmed, despite having a bit of time off my full-time gig. I’ve found myself fantasizing about retirement, about living in an apartment or a condo, and about sipping cocktails near a pool somewhere in Italy. Italy will have to wait, but I’m really wondering if I’m cut out to maintain a property and all that goes with it, including the overwhelming expense. My youngest tells me I’d be certifiable if I didn’t have a garden and different rooms to live in, and cupboards to store things in, etc. I’m wondering if I might be certifiable anyway? I’ve fantasized about offering up my bedroom to anybody who would shop, cook, clean, manage appointments and give occasional shoulder massages without expectation of anything in return, other than food and shelter.

Most of the time I convince myself that I love my home (and I really do) and my neighbours (ditto) and my ‘hood (double ditto). Me and the kids and the kitties have a nice space to live and play in. I’m sure once the buds start pushing through the mud in the backyard, I’ll look back on this and wonder what kind of stuff I was on.

Meanwhile, the battle of fiscal sustainability wages on. Right at the moment, I’m winning.


One response to this post.

  1. I love it! You did great this month. Forget the winter doldrums… spring is about to arrive!


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