I (surprisingly or not), worked a lot this month and made a lot more than I expected to, going into February.
I suppose that’s rather easy to do, when your goals are set very low at $500 of income a month.
None of my income will turn into a full-time job even on the side, because this seemed to be the month that everyone needed help, and I was happy to pitch in my time for some money.
I also spent a lot this month (the bulk of it happening on the first day of February), which may or may not have motivated me to hustle a bit harder than usual this month.
INCOME = $1371.96
$1346.96 of it was actual cash-in-hand
I surpassed my casual PF goal of making an additional $500/month (outside of regular contracting income) goal so easily (happened in the first week of February) that I decided to make it $1000 for this month.
Then I hit that $1000/month goal by about mid-month, February 16th, so I revised it to $1500, but alas, fell short.
(Aim for the moon to land among the stars, right?)
I actually made more than part-time minimum wage this month!
Yes. You should be just as surprised as I am.
Canada’s minimum wage is $820 for 20 hours a week at $10.25 per hour, and I was only about $250 away from a “full-time minimum wage” job.
Maybe I should really aim for full-time minimum wage….
Sounds like too much pressure for no reason.
Anyway, this extra cash would also compensate last month’s barely-$500 income as well.
Ranked in order of amount earned:
- $600 – Took on a short work assistant job (referred to by a family member, not a regular gig)
- $320 – Freelanced on the side, writing articles for sites; semi-regular thing, not my actual job
- $262.45 – I sold the rest of my stuff on consignment; New batch already dropped off for March
- $47.35 – Complained (nicely) about my delivery not making it, was compensated ($31 profit)
- $43.31 – Got my money back from Ebates Canada from my little shopping spree of December
- $42.25 – Google Adsense mostly because of my ranting and raving (should do that more..)
- $30 – Sold my physical books as I now have e-copies of them; considering selling my manga
- $25 – Swagbucks turned into Amazon gift cards; Will be using this $$ to buy a sweater shaver
- $1.60 – Found this on the ground in random coins this month
(POSSIBLE) UPCOMING CONTRACT INCOME = $100,000
I also got a whiff of a contract that sounded pretty steady and would give me about $100K for a few months of work, but the client changed their minds (ARGH!!!) and won’t be ready to start the project for a few more months.
So I’m back in waiting mode to see if something better comes along in the meantime. I hate people who put me through the ringer of interviews and grilling. Don’t put me through that stress unless you’re serious.
That’s the thing about freelancing – it’s a waiting game.
Anyway, I need to give my brain a workout so you’ll see more posts from me because my brain is getting flabbier than a beer belly.
EXPENSES = $1794.98
Note: Without those pots and pans, I’d have only spent $1078.35.
Just putting it out there that I’d have been totally under my Income of $1346.96 this month.
Note: I am posting this on the last day of February, but I’ve taken into account in my expenses what I will spend today.
The biggest expense was in the household equipment section.
New pots and pans (story on why we had to buy them coming up in my What I Bought spending post), along with repairing what I own, and some new wardrobe things*.
(*Look, you just can’t say “NO” to perfect red ballet flats on sale, in your elusive size 7, that’s just crazy talk.)
OTHER BUDGET NOTES:
I WON A ZINIO GIVEAWAY!
I didn’t mark this as “income” (it’d be silly.. right?), but I won the Zinio e-magazine giveaway on Geek in Heels (Jenny is a fabulous blogger, I’ve been a fan since back in the day).
Woo hoo! $25 CAD saved for a magazine renewal.
As you may or may not know, I read e-books, e-manga and e-magazines on my iPad, so this is fantastic.
Thanks again, Jenny!
TOP 5 SPENDING CATEGORIES FOR THIS MONTH
Yeah. I knew all of this.
My Repairs budget will be big for next month too, I’m bringing in more pairs of old shoes and heels to be fixed and grippy-soled.
(An enduring motto for me is: Take care of what you own, rather than to toss it and buy it new!)
NET WORTH = $209,709.86 or a decrease of - $395.20 or - 0.19%
Small decrease. Not significant enough to make me weep in the corner like in previous months, but I definitely need to keep up my resolve.
I think a lot of it had to do with my rather decent income this month to cover a good chunk of my bills,
Without those pots and pans, I would have been $268.61 UNDER budget.
I spent $448.02 over my income for this month mostly for those pots/pans, but my net worth only dropped $395.20 because the markets slightly made up for that.
MY NET WORTH FROM THE PAST 12 MONTHS
From February 2012, I was just under the $200,000 mark by about $20,000.
A nice fat jump happened in March (I wish I could tell you it was because of my brilliance but alas, it was not), but it sure helped cushion all the taxes I had to pay in April.
Had a nice growth over the rest of the months that peaked around July and then had a slow decline up until where I am today.
Not too shabby for not having worked much, but I am basically only about $30,000 above where I was a year ago.
*puts game face on*
My goal will be to try and keep my net worth line steady, rather than go through another spike and drop, although March / April will be where I’ll need to pay my taxes (about a $3500 difference to Canada, versus U.S. taxes).
MY FAVOURITE BLOG FEATURE THIS MONTH: ECCENTRICITY
This is one of the nicest compliments I’ve received in a long time, with Jacq me an low-profile eccentric, and I couldn’t be more pleased that it came from one of my all-time favourite PF bloggers..
I’ve been reading Jacq since… gosh, since I found her blog which must have been a few years ago.
Then I proceeded to devour every blog post in all the archives.
She doesn’t write much (I like that, because each post she does write is eagerly anticipated by yours truly), and keeps a rather low-profile herself, but if you just take a look through her blog Single Mom, Rich Mom, you’ll soon understand that she is a pretty incredible person.
She doesn’t toot her own horn, keeps to herself for the most part, but her writing has always been of top-notch quality.
(For the record, I’m not just saying all of that just because she paid me a compliment.)
A FANTASTIC READ FOR THE MONTH
THE best story I’ve read so far this year; it’s riveting, and Curtis (a former gang member) is now a writer at the American Debt Project:
It’s so interesting to read about how other people on the fringe of society life, and the struggles that he had with budgeting as well, after getting out of prison.
(I say fringe not to be dismissive or rude, but to highlight that it truly is another world.)
I’d gush about it some more but you’d be better off just reading it for yourself to get the full effect.
OTHER ARTICLES I ENJOYED AROUND THE WEB
Photograph I took of a Fendi Box
- NY Magazine:What Thirteen People Wore to interview with Anna Wintour
- Panodo Daily: Sandberg versus Slaughter ..and then there’s reality – on women & kids
- The Guardian: The £1500 Pippa handbag craze *
Best sentence of the entire story about that Pippa handbag craze:
“God forbid the woman [Pippa Middleton] should buy her own stuff, having been paid a mere £400,000 for a book revealing that the secret of turning raw sausages into cooked ones is to switch the oven on.”
- Putting me together: Building a wardrobe from scratch, starting with colours
- James Altucher: Lots of naked people – Inspiring, and not what you think!
- Financial Uproar: Interview with a phone sex operator — Enlightening and funny.
- Europe & Me: Foie Gras – Is it really as bad as we’re making it out to be? What about the rest of our food? (Hat tip to Christiane, my lovely reader who wrote this excellent article)
- The Asian Pear: Hacking a new nailpolish — Brilliant. Clear nailpolish & crushed eyeshadow.
- The Monevator: Can I afford to live like a millionaire? – In-depth, technical article on savings
- DQYDJ: When will you become a millionaire [Calculator]? — My requested calculator from PK!
- Harvard Business Review: The best investment you can make — On what matters to humans
- 2 Ringgits: Setting my priorities right — A wonderful, introspective post that made me nod along
- Thomas Stanley: Not gifted? Represent those who are — Become the agent, not the author.
- CBB: Making the best of what’s available — Guatemalan grocery shopping guest posted by one of my favourite bloggers Pauline of Reach Financial Independence (her nomadic life is great!)
As an atheist, I tend to stay away from getting into petty “my religion is better than you not even having a heaven to look forward to, you heathen” arguments but I feel like this has to be a joke.
They’re trolling us, right?
- The banana is held the wrong way to be eaten in the video. Even monkeys know this. They hold the handle of the banana and peel the other end, so that it’s easier to hold and to eat.
- Modern bananas as we know them today, were cultivated and bred from a cousin of the plantain (Source)
- What about all the other fruits? I’d like them to explain the durian, a seriously spiky, smelly, and dangerous fruit banned on Singaporean subways, among others (coconut, pineapple).
Explain this as part of natural design, please!
Literally, forbidden fruit in Singapore. Photograph on the left is my own photo from being in Singapore, and Via
Honestly, I really don’t care to get into a he-said, she-said, religious debate, because you can believe what you want to believe in as long as you don’t try and change my beliefs.
I’m just mildly amused by the whole act of bringing up the modern, yellow, cultivated banana as proof.
I am not expecting to repeat the income of February, but if I can, I’d like to.
(Listen to that hesitation in my voice… )
I can expect $500 a month in side income (I am not taking on any minimum-wage part-time jobs soon), so that’s my goal for March, to try and keep up the average for the year.
Will do better. Will do better. Will do better.