Slowly Sipping Coffee

September 2015 Budget Update

I can’t believe September has come and gone. It seems like only 6 months ago we were finding out Mrs. SSC may get laid off this week. We’re still waiting to find out, as they are dragging it out thru the later part of this week, maybe even into next week. Huge eyeroll… I think lack of efficiency may be a key factor in needing to have so many layoffs to begin with, but since I’m no corporate analyst, I’ll just leave that alone.

Um, it's a pie chart....

Um, it’s a pie chart….

September positives, daycare was down last month, even though it all evens out since we’re just paying “per week”. Also, health, gifts, entertainment, pets, and cash were all lower than usual. Mrs. SSC even crocheted a pair of Minion hats for a set of twins, whose birthday party our oldest was invited to. That saved us from buying any birthday presents, so YEAH for small wins!

Numbers, numbers, numbers!

Numbers, numbers, numbers!

September Negatives include utilities, which were slightly higher, probably due to that 3 weeks of 100+ degree weather in early September. Car repair/gas/tolls came in a little higher than previous months, no clue why there, maybe more toll usage? I’ll monitor that closer for next month. Groceries, though… BUST! Not sure why this jumped up so much, but we will be doing a grocery curtailing this month and monitor purchases and receipts to get it reigned in. We would analyze September’s receipts, but we don’t always keep every receipt. Looking at overall purchases from credit card statements, there doesn’t seem to be anything out of whack, so we will monitor and report back for October! SO exciting, you probably are giddy with anticipation! :)

Well, except for waiting for the sword of Damocles to fall later this week, there haven’t been too many changes in the SSC household. We have made multiple budget and savings scenarios, and lifestyle changes regarding this upcoming layoff cycle and we will report all that out to you as soon as we know something. I have to say, as stressful as it has been lately, it has been pretty darn encouraging to review all of our income, savings, FFLC timelines and more and realize that we are still sitting in a pretty good position. It does alleviate some stressful aspects of this situation. However, the anticipation and dragging out of this announcement and decision is just ridiculous though. Talk about adding more undo stress to an already stressful time. Aye yi yi!!

Hope everyone has a great week!

22 thoughts on “September 2015 Budget Update

  1. Amber Tree

    From the reports it looks like you have a firm grip on your spending.

    When I see the pie chart and the big piece that daycare is taking: OMG! I thought we paid a lot in Belgium, but it seems in the US you even pay more.
    What is the date daycare will end? That month, my wife and I celebrated in a restaurant with a Michelin star, just because we could!

    I hope the waiting stress end soon for you

    1. Mrs SSC

      August 2018 both kids will be in public school – but if we are still working, we will have to pay about $200/week for before and after school care. But that is the same month we are hoping to be FI…

      1. Elephant Eater

        Just curious but do you want the kids in daycare for social development, etc and have you analyzed your cost of working including daycare, commuting, increased tax rate of two incomes, etc? We have only one child and only do a couple of days per week and so daycare costs only average about $350/mo for us which after tax deductions really isn’t bad and we would probably consider keeping her in daycare anyway even if not working because she is very shy and benefits from interaction with the other kids.

        Saw below that you are keeping the job but financially wonder if you wouldn’t be just as well off if you didn’t have it IF you didn’t really want the kids in daycare and could decrease expenses.

        I feel your pain when I see that number.

        Just my $.02.

        Congrats on keeping the job and the decision being yours to make!


        1. Mr SSC Post author

          Neither of us has the option of working from home, and while Mrs. SSC could do part-time, well, we both make hefty salaries and even with the kids in daycare it is better financially for us to both keep working. I have looked at the whole cost of working, and working still wins… for now. I think eventually – like in the next year, Mrs SSC may quit her job, just to be able to spend more time with the kids and slow down the pace of our hectic work week schedules.

    1. Mrs SSC

      I can’t wait! Next year we should get a break, because Kindergarten is at the public school. But, if I am still working, we will have to pay for before and after-school care.

  2. Abigail @ipickuppennies

    Tell her I want a Minion hat! And yeah, it sucks to still be in limbo about whether you’ll be fired. On the other hand, the longer it takes, the more paychecks you get.

    My husband’s disability benefits were reviewed and denied. We started an appeal and he’ll get Medicare in the meantime. Since we’re not sure if that’ll be approved, I hope it moves at traditional bureaucratic paces. If he’s denied, we’ll have to pay for marketplace insurance and… ouch.

    1. Mr. SSC

      Hat size and 1 eye or two? :) It is nice getting paychecks still, but the waiting has been the worst.

      Hopefully, your appeal moves as slowly as this whole layoff decision making. Looking at market insurance for us in a few more years doesn’t look real cheap, so I hear you on the “ouch” aspect.

  3. Our Next Life

    OMG — I can’t believe they’re STILL making you wait! It’s inhumane, I tell you. But wow — you guys seem to be making the absolute best of it, and the fact that you’ll be in good shape either way speaks to how well you’ve prepared yourselves. Kudos once again. Keeping fingers crossed for you!

    1. Mr SSC Post author

      OK, found out today I get to keep my job. Honestly, I think I’m a little disappointed… post to come :)

  4. Jason

    Aside from daycare your budget looks a lot like ours. I do hope you get some resolution to the job situation soon. No matter what I am sure it will work out for the best. FIRE awaits soon.

  5. Prudence Debtfree

    I really don’t like “being in limbo” situations either. Every time it happens, I think “I can get Zen and be at peace with this” – and although I’ve never achieved it, I can say that I have gained some limbo stamina over the years. You really are sitting pretty despite the uncertainty, and I’m glad that lifts you up a bit through this stressful time. Whether the limbo lasts for much longer or not, I wish you the best.

    1. Mr SSC Post author

      Thanks! We found out yesterday that Mrs SSC still has her job. The oil industry is still dicey, so we suspect there may be more layoffs to come. But, it is true, we feel very fortunate that we are in a better position than many of our co-workers.

  6. Maggie @ Northern Expenditure

    All the oil companies up here are laying off this week as well. Several friends of ours are waiting like you guys. I’m so sorry! That’s gotta be tough. Well done in September. Crocheting has gotten me out of a lot of expenses as well… baby shower and birthday presents, halloween costumes, etc. Glad to see I’m not the only one! :)

    1. Mr SSC Post author

      It’s a rough time for the O&G industry. Fingers crossed for your friends. Last year the kids had more crocheted hats than I can think of. Kwazee from Octonauts, minions, owls, it seems like there should be more… We’ve made our own costumes so far, but little man has us stumped with “a snake”. It looks tricky to make and still be wearable all day at school. We may ditch and go with second choice, T-Rex! The Mrs thinks it will be difficult and I said, meh, think Yoshi, not T-Rex and it’ll be fine. Lol

  7. Jessica @ Too Many Lattes

    I actually think your grocery bill is impressive! We are just two people and can’t seem to get ours that low. I would love to hear more about your strategies for reducing it.

    And daycare …. man. In SF where we live, our friends pay between $2k-$3k a month. Totally insane!

    1. Mr SSC Post author

      Thanks! We are tracking it this month, allegedly, and will post an update on it early November. Mainly, we try keep the impulse buys down. We make lists, and if it isn’t on the list, it doesn’t get bought, unless I remember while at the grocery, but when only one of us goes, that’s out the window. For instance, I’ve been out of chili powder for a week now because I forget to put it on a list, and Mrs. SSC doesn’t use it. Note-it’s now on a list. :) I think that’s the big reduction strategy for us is using the list.

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