Slowly Sipping Coffee

Kaboom, went the budget!! June 2015 Update

Man, was this a rough month for the budget in the SSC household. As I’d teased last month, we were expecting a few overages due to the A/C repairs, new tires, new greyhound adoption and the like, but I wasn’t expecting the hits to keep rolling. Fortunately, there haven’t been any breakdowns, repairs, or otherwise costly expenses that have cropped up yet this month, and we’re almost a third of the way through it. A quick glance at the bar chart shows June (appropriately orange) topping the charts in almost every category except the stable ones like mortgage, car note, and home utilities. How did this all happen and where did the money go you wonder? Since we don’t have the usual “numbers” chart for this month (it will return in the July update and you can peruse it then) I’ll just tell you.

Ouch, June hurt!

Ouch, June hurt!

Phone, tv, internet got hit with a $65/month increase due to 2 years’ worth of discounts finally running out. I called ATT, asking about any other ways to reduce our bill, and besides getting a 3 month $40 discount applied to our account, it was just lip service. I shopped around and 2 days later have our service switched and added bonus, NFL Sunday package is included for free this year! I count that as a win, since I’ll probably have to pony up for that one from my discretionary funds if we continue it in the future. Increased daycare costs – no clue. I’m guessing it’s a combo of short month in May, little longer month in June, and the difference was made up in June. Groceries were okay, trending a little higher than usual, but we’ve been on a “grocery spend watch” just to see if we can keep it steady.

Home repairs… Oh, home repairs…. Besides the A/C drip line getting clogged up (~$450), we also got 2 solar screens made for the bathroom windows (~$140) and it is now cool as can be in there, and not sauna like every day. We also had our wall mount A/C controller go out, so there was some added cost there. When we looked at replacing it with the same unit, we realized we could try the Nest for a little less (~$250). So far it’s been working great! The garage door springs also broke in this month, and that was another $440 to get them replaced. The car needed new tires, so I went a middle of the road option for that, but it was still ~$650 we didn’t want to spend.

The kids had their birthdays this past week, and we had a party. No, no, not some thousand dollar extravaganza with entertainers, balloon animals, and bounce houses. Oh wait, there was a bounce house, but upside, it was paid for over a year ago, and overall, not that pricey. Essentially we just had friends over and did snacks, drinks, and appetizer sort of food, beyond the cake and ice cream.

Both cakes came out nice!

Both cakes came out nice!

I designed and decorated James’ cake, and Mrs. SSC did Marie’s.

James wanted a construction cake, so I built this one.

James wanted a construction cake, so I built this one.

With the food and extra drinks, juice boxes and gifts (For our kids not those give away bags for the party, I just don’t get those) it was still ~$200 or so for entertaining.

The bigger kicker of the month was our shower in the master bathroom. The metal for the hinge on the door fatigued and split. When this happened the pin that rests on this tubular metal hinge now sat about ½” lower and started hanging up on the lower part of the door. Imagine any door you use dropping a half inch and you get the idea. After hours of scouring the internet and talking to 4 different shower companies, we found out that they don’t make replacement parts for the style of enclosure we had. Seriously, what a racket! None, no parts. They have to be connected to the mob somehow, but no, they just expect you to replace the WHOLE thing if something like a tubular hinge fatigues and splits. So, after getting 3 quotes all within $50 of each other, we got our shower replaced to the tune of $1350….. Ridiculous! Now you understand where the comment about fixing all the “custom everything” on the Living Big Sky show came from, as it was playing the night after we’d ordered our standard shower door replacement. Ugh…

Finally, we got the newest member of the family our new greyhound, Coffee!! Kidding, we went with Lola instead of her racing name “Rusteze”. She’s been great, but the adoption fee of $250 and the $200 vet checkup/heartworm and tick/flea medicine and some other costs added up to just over $500.

Happy and relaxing

Happy and relaxing








Sound asleep!

Sound asleep!











So to recap, we’re about $3600 over budget this month. Fingers crossed that we don’t have the same string of spending in the next few months, but I see it trending back downward again.

How was your month?

Did you get any crazy unexpected bills,repairs, or new pets that threw your budget for a loop?

20 thoughts on “Kaboom, went the budget!! June 2015 Update

  1. Steve @ MyFamilyOnABudget

    Wow, that was a tough pill to swallow! At least you had the funds (I would think) to cover this with cash and weren’t going into debt for it. When it rains, it pours sometimes! That’s what emergency funds are for though.

    Congrats on your new pet, she’s beautiful!

    Our month was a plus one, but we rolled some investments over into American Funds and took a bit of a hit on the front load fees… You live and you learn.

    Hopefully, July will hit like a normal month, even with it being a longer month.

    1. Mr SSC Post author

      Thanks for the congrats on the new pet, we love her and she’s adapting well!

      Yes, there were funds to cover it, but man it doesn’t make it hurt any less. It was just one thing after another all month long. Congrats on having a plus month! I’m hoping July is one of those for us.

  2. Fervent Finance

    Congrats on the adoption! Not to nitpick the budget at all but $440 sounds expensive for garage doors springs! I assume you didn’t DIY? I hope the repairs slow down for you in July!

    1. Mr SSC Post author

      Nope on the DIY for the garage door springs. Mainly, due to the fact I was solo parenting that week, and the car was trapped in the garage and it happened at ~2pm. I called 3 places and the first one that could get there that afternoon got the job.

      It also ripped the overhead track out of the wall, so I did re-install that, but I still couldn’t get the door to budge much more than a foot before it slammed down again.

      Looking at local Angie’s list prices for that type of job, it was about $50-75 higher than average, but it was fixed in 1.5 hrs from when I called, so, I’ll take it. I agree it was a bit steep, especially compared to DIY which would be about $140 for both springs.

      I can’t wait to have the time/freedom to tackle those things on my own.

  3. Our Next Life

    Welcome Lola! What a cutie. That’s a tough budget month — we feel your pain! We’re about to shell out $3K for every-five-years house staining… ugh. So yeah, we’ll be about $3K over budget for July. Can’t wait until we’re retired and can do that work ourselves!

    1. Mr. SSC

      Ugh, house staining, along with deck staining those are some of my least favorite chores. That will be a big save once you can do it yourself. I plan on a LOT of DYI once I’m FI. Seems like I should add some more acronyms…. Hahaha

  4. Abigail @ipickuppennies

    Ugh, we always have unexpected expenses. Usually either the house or health problems rear their head.

    Last month, we had about 5 specialist visits at $35 and $40 each, plus some unusual health expenses. This month, hubby has PT three times a week for four weeks. Even at $10 a month, that’s $120 extra. Whee.

    At least the house is behaving, however briefly.

    1. Mr. SSC

      We went through a spell with Marie and myself where we were at the dr or PT almost every week for a few months. Those copays add up quickly.
      At least your house is behaving though, right?

  5. Brian @DebtDiscipline

    Wow what a month! The Birthday cakes look amazing. HBD kids! Welcome Lola. Dogs make a great additional to the family. Good luck with your new pup and knocking wood that nothing breaks in July.

    1. Mr. SSC

      Thanks for the cakes comment! I had fun with it but finesse with icing, I do not have… Fortunately, it was a construction site, lol. I also hope nothing breaks in July.

  6. Tawcan

    Wow those are awesome birthday cakes. 😀

    Congrats on switching to a new service provider and getting something free. That’s a win-win for you. Welcome to the family Lola.

    1. Mr SSC Post author

      Thanks! I’m stoked about getting to see whichever game I want instead of whatever dirge is on the local channels. Now I’m wondering how much free time I’ll actually have to watch any of them. At least it will let me know if it is worth it or not next year when the NFL Sunday Ticket won’t be free. I look at it as a free test run with the kids.

  7. Prudence Debtfree

    Ouch! That even hurt to read about. The orange lines on your chart really do stand out! But these types of months are part of the journey. It sounds like you’re taking it in stride. There will be awesome months t balance it out. In the mean time, you should feel very good about those birthday cakes! Lucky kids : )

    1. Mr SSC Post author

      It’s good to have some off months to help establish a more realistic baseline that isn’t “all sunshine and unicorns”. This month definitely did that, lol. Looking forward to some more “normal” predictable months.

    1. Mr SSC Post author

      Not yet, but soon… I’ve just been discussing that with Mrs. SSC this week, and that answers that. So it looks like, yes, we should be, lol.

  8. May

    Congrats on the adoption. Lola is beautiful. Adopting a greyhound would have never occurred to me (not sure why- I guess they are not a popular breed here) until I saw frugal hound over at the frugalwoods.
    I hear you on the unexpected expenses. They all seem to happen at once.
    Love the cakes. Pinned on pinterest.

    1. Mr SSC Post author

      Thanks! The greyhound idea was from a friend way back that mentioned they made great pets. The more we looked into their personalities and temperament, they seemed like a perfect fit for our household. You’re right though, except for the frugalwoods I don’t know anyone else that has a greyhound either.

  9. Even Steven

    Adopting the dog will add some excitement to your life, ever since we adopted our Siberian Husky it has been non-stop excitement;) Our costs were lower with the adoption closer to $250 all in, but for me it’s still fun to come home to my dog jumping up like a dolphin in excitement that i’m home. Hope Lola does the same for you;)

    1. Mr SSC Post author

      Yeah, ever since we had to put Harley down, Quinn has been a little slower. They are good for each other and definitely add some (more) excitement around here!She’s finally warming up to coming and saying hi when we get home. She’s started coming over to get pets too, so that’s been great!

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