Intentional Spending – August

August should, in theory be a quiet month. My jaw surgery is tomorrow (eek!) and I will be staying at my parents for a couple of weeks. I think most of my expenses this month will be train tickets to get to the surgeon for check ups.

August Spending

  • Train ticket for surgeon appointment number 1 – $6.00
  • Train ticket for surgeon appointment number 2 – $6.00
  • Rates Payment – $1432.00
  • Body Corporate bill – $350.00 (I’m not sure if this is actually coming but I haven’t paid one in a while so I’m anticipating it’s arrival)
  • Father’s Day gift – $50.00
  • Nephew’s birthday present – $50.00
  • Beautiful You course repayment – $396.00
  • Dinner out as a last hurrah – $150.00

This is my list of additional purchases.

  • Black loafers/shoes for work – up to $150
  • A new water bottle that tallies how many bottles have been drunk, is BPA free and made of glass – $50
  • Single serve bowls that can be microwaved x 4 – up to $50
  • iPod – $219 (new item)
  • Doorbell – purchased last month by fiance

I haven’t added anything new to the additional purchases list. I think I will probably get the iPod this month but I’ll see how I feel in terms of getting out of the house and driving. Although I don’t have it as part of my intentional spending list, I think my grocery bill will decrease significantly as I’ll be buying mostly fruit and veggies to blend into smoothies.

Budget Spend – $2440.00
Additional Spend – $469.00

Intentional Spending – July Wrap Up

Wow, I did really bad at calculating all my expenses this month. I’m so over and I knew it around the 20th July which was 6 days after pay day.

Here’s how I fared in July’s Intentional Spending.

  • Lunch at the Sofitel for a friend’s birthday – $110.00
    Lunch ended up being $116.00. And delicious.
  • Xrays etc for surgery – $850.00
    Xrays and moulds were taken – $850.00
  • Dinner with friends – $100.00
    My fiance paid for this dinner.
  • Train/Uber for Barossa Dirt – $30.00
    We used the train both ways – $6.00
  • Drinks for when my best friend is back in town from overseas – $50.00
    Drinks turned into lunch first so I paid for that – $62.10
  • Train/Uber for fiance’s mid year social for work – $50.00
    Got the train to and from the event – $6.00

Here’s how I overspent

  • Dinner after Barossa Dirt – $82.00
  • Forgot about my water bill – $232.00
  • Going away drinks for a colleague. Not once, but twice. And I paid for the first rounds. I have to stop doing that because I’m always driving so never get shouted drinks – $42.00
  • Forgot about the coaching course I signed up for. Whilst I had the deposit money saved, I forgot about the monthly payments – $396.00
  • Impromptu dinner out with girlfriends. One decided on a last minute visit from Perth so of course that meant dinner and drinks – $25.00
  • New headlights as both my mine blew within a couple weeks of each other – $19.00
  • New Pj’s – $24.00
  • Internet Extender (so the wifi actually reaches my old bedroom whilst I’m staying at my parents place – $49.95
  • New jacket – $39.00
  • Online Diploma (I like studying for fun) – $49.00

I spent an extra $957.95.  Whilst it is a lot, I’ve included the water bill in there. Part of my savings strategy is to put away money for these types of bills but if I can, I like to just pay them out of my everyday account because then the money I’ve put in the savings can be moved to an actual savings account. The course is something I’m going to have to be really mindful of because it is almost $400.00 extra a month that I knew about but didn’t really realise it if you get me. I know I can do it – it may mean tweaking how much I’m putting away for stuff for a few months.

I also bought an item that wasn’t on my list nor was it on my clothing list but an item I realised I wanted whilst reading Natalie’s Intentional Spending post and that is a leather jacket.  Initially I wanted a real leather jacket and was happy to spend up to $300.00 but wasn’t happy with anything I’d found. I was in Target one day wandering and found a faux leather jacket that I quite liked. It had silver hardware which was good as I don’t like the gold and whilst it had zip details it didn’t go overboard. Plus it was on sale for $39.00 so I decided to buy it. I’m really happy with the purchase because it was pretty much exactly how I envisioned what I wanted except it’s not actual leather.

I didn’t purchase anything under the Additional Purchases however my fiance did end up buying a doorbell. I’m fairly sure it’s haunted as it makes a weird barking/electronic noise in the middle of the night but it’s a doorbell that I did not have to pay for so it’s now crossed off the list.

Budget Spend- $1130.00
Actual Spend- $1040.10
Extra Spend – $957.95

3 Days Out From Jaw Surgery

Today marks 3 days out from jaw surgery. I’m not nervous which seems to be irritating people. I’ve had lots of people tell me absolute horror stories which actually really infuriates me. Granted, I’m not nervous or stressed but why go into detail about awful things that could happen? Would you not think we’ve discussed these things with our surgeons or even googled it ourselves? It’s like when I got my wisdom teeth out and my fiance’s brothers were telling me about people who have bruises on their chests and ribs broken whilst the surgeon was trying to get their teeth out. It really adds nothing to it so here’s a tip – unless people ask, don’t share the awful things that are really a 0.00001% chance of happening.

So I’ve been reading some blogs of people who have had the same or similar surgery but what I’ve found is that people don’t talk about what they can and can’t do the first couple of days. I want to know things like can I shower on my own? Can I go to the toilet on my own? Will I need people to help me with absolutely everything? These are the things I want to know and any tips and tricks that will help me.

Anyway, before surgery I needed to get my jewelry sorted so on Saturday I headed to my piercing studio and got some plastic retainers put in. I’ve read a lot of conflicting information about metallic jewelry during surgery as well as multiple professionals telling me different things but I figured if it’s safer, I may as well swap out what I can. I ended up getting retainers only in my nipples. I took the jewelry out of my belly piercing because I’ve had it pierced for 10 years so didn’t need a retainer and I left the jewelry in the vch (if you don’t know what a vch is, it’s a vertical clitoral hood piercing. Image searches are NSFW if you’re curious) as the retainer would be far too uncomfortable for 3-4 weeks. If I had been prepared I could have ordered a glass one but unfortunately I was about 4 weeks too late for that.

But moving on. This morning I had my last appointment with the orthodontist prior to surgery. I had some photos taken and surgical hooks put in. I also had a bracket fixed because I broke it eating pork crackle (totally worth it) a couple of weeks back. The hooks are a little weird but nowhere near as big or uncomfortable like I imagined. From what I understood of the chatter between the orthodontist and the assistant, the hooks are used to align my mouth during surgery whilst the jaw is broken so they know how to line it back up again. The whole thing took about 25 minutes from photos to finish.

I’m actually not that clued in on how the whole procedure works, as in the jaw surgery itself.  I should probably look into it but I’m not that interested. Truthfully I don’t really need to know how things work. I’m very trusting of medical professionals – I’ve never had any reason to not be so I trust they are making and doing the best for me.

But I am still a bit nervous about the first couple of days post surgery. I’m sure everything will be fine and I’ll be looked after if not. My sister tells me the first 5 days for her were the worst and I’ve heard the same from friends who have had the same surgery so at least I’m prepared for that.

I went to Kmart tonight to get a few things to prepare. I bought a new set of pj’s because I figure I’ll need them. I also bought an internet extender thingy that will mean that the wifi signal will actually reach my old bedroom at my parentals where I’ll be staying for the initial recovery period. Tomorrow night I’ll start packing because on Wednesday night my fiance and I will load the dog and all my belongings and go stay at my parents because on Thursday I will be going to the hospital.

I’m actually really excited at this stage. I’m eating everything I can because I’ll be on liquids and soft food for what I’m sure will feel like forever. I’m drinking all the wine and I’ve stopped smoking so yay for me!

Why I Let Friendships Fade Out

I’ve always been pretty good at letting relationships naturally fade out. I’ve always been able to recognise when either I’m no longer interested in maintaining the friendship or recognising when they no longer are. Sometimes there’s hurt feelings but most of the time there is a feeling of loss but no hard feelings.

It is hard to do when you’ve never done it before. I remember the first time I realised I was no longer a priority for someone. She was my best friend from grade 2 until grade 6. We spent nearly every afternoon together. I was usually home alone with my sister for a couple of hours after school every day so instead I’d ride my bike to my best friends house, stay there for a few hours and then make my way home. We hung out most weekends. And then we finished school. I moved but we kept in touch. She went to a school where 90% of my primary school went. I went to a school where I knew exactly 0 people. I was desperate to hang on to my old friendships but them, not so much. I spent many lonely weekends in the first couple of months. My parents worked weekends so it was hard to see my old friends as public transport wasn’t great. My best friend was good at first. Then she got a boyfriend and we were all forgotten. More of my phone calls went unanswered and not returned.  We were mailing letters to each other a lot over the summer break but they started taking longer and longer to get to me. It took me the entire year to come to the realisation that I was no longer a priority. I wish I’d seen it sooner but as a 13 year old kid, I didn’t quite have the awareness I have now. It hurt. It really did, but by that stage I had made new friends. A core group of girls that I still see on occasion and one girl who is now my best friend and has been for the last 18 years.

The point is, that experience helped me see that people have other shit going on. And that I’m not always going to be a priority. That people grow apart. What it showed me is that there isn’t always a conversation about it. Whilst an explanation would be nice, I know myself that sometimes it’s hard to express that someone has done nothing wrong but you just don’t want to be friends anymore. It seems mean and unnecessary.

I also realised upon moving to a new school in year 9 that its ok to have relationships to serve you for the time being. In my first year at the new school, my group of friends were basically the other new kids. We stuck together because we were in all the same situation and that was one where everyone else had known each other for years and were already in their cliques. Year 9 is also a notorious year for girls so it’s hard to break into a new friendship group. Whilst I had fun with these girls, they couldn’t offer what I craved – common interests and close companionship. We all knew why we were friends and we each knew we were biding our time for acceptance by others. By year 11 I had found two groups of girls that I swapped between. Whilst everyone got along, they didn’t mix out of school but each group gave me something that I needed and once school ended, I stopped contact with the ones who I only spent time with simply because they were there.

I have let a lot fade out simply because they don’t serve a purpose in my life. That sounds harsh but as I’ve gotten older I’ve realised I don’t have any interest in maintaining relationships for the sake of it. I’m very introverted in terms of energy levels and so I prefer to keep a close number of friends compared to hundreds of friends and if someone new comes into my life that may mean that someone else may be put on the back burner.

I think I’ve been lucky though. I’ve always been very much my own person who doesn’t rely on others entirely for support. I’ve always had that in myself and have had to use it in difficult times. I’ve also always had an awareness of others and how I factor into their lives. I’ve rarely thought that I’m more important to someone than I really was. In fact, I always assume that people don’t think of/remember me and whilst I know that comes across like I don’t think much of myself when I actually do, it also means that when someone does invariably decide they no longer want to keep as in touch with me as they used to, I don’t really notice too much or if I do notice, I’m glad for it.

Like with so much in my life, I don’t want things in it simply for the sake of it. I want all my relationships to add value to my life. So if that means letting go of friendships that no longer serve me then I will. And I refuse to feel bad about it.

How To: Plan For Bills

For some reason I still get surprised by bills that arrive in the mail. I’ve lived out of home for over 4 years now and yet I’m never prepared when my water bill comes, or when the rates arrive or anything else. It’s never an issue of not having money, it’s more that I want to be more prepared for these things.

So this is what I’m going to do.

  • Print out 2 calendars with all the months and dates on them.
  • Write down all payments that happen on a certain day of the month in each month on both calendars
  • Go through the last year of bank statements and write down when bills were paid (I generally pay all my bills within a couple of days of receiving them).
  • Write them down on the one of the calendars and Ta Da! I have a list I can work off for the upcoming year.
  • Write down on the unused calendar at the start of the month when bills can be expected.
  • Stick it up somewhere and cross them off as they start arriving and noting what day they are paid/due.
  • Add any new bills to the calendar.

The good thing is that once this is done, it’s done. I don’t have to do it again until the following year and it’ll be a much easier process as I’ll only have to refer to the previous calendar. It’s also a good method because you don’t have to rely on a calendar year or a financial year. You can start and end at any month. I’m planning for my current calendar to be from September 2017 to August 2018.

I hope this helps to minimise the surprise of bills arriving. Lucky for me it’s never been an issue to pay bills but I’d just like to be more aware of when they’ll arrive.

Coveting

Despite how much I want to be more careful with what I spend and only purchase things that I need, there’s still a lot of things that I want. Simply for no reason other than because I want them.

Here are a few of those things

True Rose Gold Shimmer Lip Tar – Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics US$17

https://occmakeup.com/collections/lips/products/lip-tar-rtw
Image courtesy of https://occmakeup.com/

True Blue Ring – Reign Sapphires US$5,100

true blue ring
Image courtesy of https://reignsapphires.com/

Bianca – Christian Louboutin AU$1,195

christianlouboutin-bianca-1120449_PK20_1_1200x1200_2
Image courtesy of http://asia.christianlouboutin.com/hk_en/shop-online/women.html

Titanium Odyssey Nipple Clicker – Industrial Strength US$216

industrial-strength-nipple-clicker-18101
Image courtesy of http://www.bodyartforms.com/

 

Fierce Bodysuit – Silent Arrow AU$90

Silent-Arrow-Fierce-Bodysuit-front
Image courtesy of http://wearesilentarrow.com/

Obviously the ring and the shoes are a little unobtainable although I do want a pair of Louboutins as my wedding shoes. The others, well they’re manageable in the scheme of things but it really come down to a case of do I want to actually spend money on these items and how will I feel about the decision once I have purchased them?

This is what I need to think about.

 

What are you currently coveting?

Being In The Moment

I wrote a post about 4 months ago about a digital detox but I wanted to do another one. Not necessarily a follow up post but just another post because I think it’s important to reiterate how easy it is to spend mindless hours on your phone.

I wouldn’t say I’m addicted to my phone. I can usually go hours without checking it and in fact, many family and friends often express their frustration that they will call or text with something urgent and it’ll take me hours to respond – if I respond at all.

But usually this happens when I’m occupied elsewhere. If I’m reading, or watching tv, working on my blog, studying, spending time with my fiance, dog, friends etc. Like right now, I’m writing this whilst watching Gossip Girl on my day off. I actually don’t know where I’ve left my phone. But when I’m at work or ‘bored’ I’m on my phone. A lot.

‘But not that much.’ I always reasoned to myself and to be honest, in comparison to a lot of other people, I’m probably nowhere near as addicted to my phone but the point is I struggle to not pick it up when I’m at work and mindlessly scroll through Facebook or Instagram or Pinterest. And I’m starting to realise the strain it’s actually putting on my body. My neck and shoulder muscles are tight and I have to think about straightening up and lifting my head instead of hunching over.

When I wrote the initial post I had been scheduling regular ‘no phone time’ at work. Usually a half hour to an hour of not looking at or touching my phone unless it rang and then depending who it was I’d either answer it or ignore it.

So how did I feel whilst no phone time was in session? Anxious is probably the best way to describe it. I kept looking at my phone wanting to start checking apps even thought I knew nothing new has happened.

Its interesting that I felt and still feel this way because I’m not the type of person who needs to know things first. I’m not the type who has to post or comment on something straight away so I really don’t understand why I feel this way. It’s obviously a case of FOMO but I can’t quite pinpoint why I need to be in the know.

This feeling has prompted me to do more about my addiction to my phone. Ironically I downloaded two apps so I can check myself. One app is to track my usage, aptly titled App Usage – it tracks every move I make on my phone as well as how long I spend on each app and will provide a summary at the end of the day of how long overall I have spent and how often I’ve checked my phone.

The second is called Digital Detox where you can start challenges of not using your phone for x amount of time. You earn points throughout the challenges. You can also give yourself 2 x 5 minute breaks if you really need to use your phone for whatever reason. The only time I’ve used it is when I was transferring myself money and forgot that the bank sends the code to my phone.

I always feel a bit jumpy when my phone is on detox. It’s amazing how hard it can be when you know you can’t use it and how you feel like you are missing out on so much.  It’s also amazing how many things you think of that you ‘need to do’ but can’t because your phone is locked.

I’m hoping this app will instill in me to not check my phone all the time. To be honest I don’t need to be on my phone 24/7 – my job doesn’t require it, and there’s never been anything that has been so important that it couldn’t wait an hour. It’s also encouraged me to use a physical diary instead of putting all appointments in my phone. I seem to remember things more when I’ve written them down.

There are a couple more things that I’ve been doing. I’ve been turning my data off and only turning it on when I need it. I’ve also disabled all my notification for my apps so I won’t be teased with a little symbol telling me that someone has done something that I may or may not be interested in.

So far I’m doing ok with it. Some days are easier than others. My record one day at work was checking my phone only 56 times compared to some of my worst where I check it up to 200 times a day. I know, even 56 times seems like a lot but it made me realise how often I check my phone for something like the time, don’t even register what time it is and then have to check it again. Never mind that I wear a watch and when I’m at work I’m on a computer and also sit next to the office clock.

So I’m going to keep going. I attempt 3 hours of detox during work time and 2 hours when I’m home. It’s hard but it forces me to find other things to do. I’ve rediscovered how much reading I can get done, how much house work I can do, that I can spend that extra time with my dog and fiance. It’s basically made me rediscover all the things in my life that I love doing instead of mindlessly scrolling through stuff that I don’t even really care about.