Category: Spending (page 1 of 10)

FIRE.

Some thoughts today:

Very recently I was unexpectedly offered employment with the Government of Canada. I was in the boonies, middle of nowhere – Costa Rica at the time and had a rickety phone connection that got cut off by a power failure. It took about an hour of frantic waiting to accept the job, and here we are, 3 months into a full-time term job of 6 months.

I love/hate it. I hate being an employee but I love the department I am in and what they stand for. There are many coworkers that I love, and some that I don’t, training has been frustrating as I’m sure is the case in many places; there simply wasn’t enough or much of it.  Many things have been a struggle, and it has also been an amazing opportunity.  I had been looking for “real” work for a very long time, years! I’ve also been selfemployed for many years. Was I not just blogging about the perils of finding actual employment? Did that not last for years, and now I’m 3 months into this cool opportunity? Haha. The grass is always greener on the other side right? I thought that finding work would offer me stability and more income and it has. Having to report to someone else instead of making your own way and schedule… its been a big adjustment.

What this job has also given me is a very nice boost in income that has helped me speed up my savings big time. Where before I’ve only been able to eke out a few hundred here and there to set aside every month, I’m making big steps now. Once upon a time I said I wanted to be a millionaire. I don’t want that anymore, in fact, more and more my focus is drifting to lean FIRE. (linkitylink) I have no visions of sitting on a beach sipping beer, but I want to work on things I enjoy and take on projects because I can because worrying about paying this month bill is no longer a worry. Volunteering and helping out with other people and community projects because I have actual time to do so.

I’m focusing on building my investments, my RSP and TFSA and in the next two months I will restart my Questrade portfolio

I am likely a few years away of any time of “retirement” and that absolutely does not include any real property as I currently rent. Aside from just saving like a squirrel, I have no concrete plans, I also don’t think of it as retirement… more so as a very lean version of financial independence.

If I quit today… What would I do?

 

Update, kicking bad habits: Tim Horton’s

About a month ago I wrote that I was re-evaluating another habit of mine: my frequent Tim Horton’s stops. While I’ve mostly cut coffee out of my lifeover the past years, initially for cost, then for health reaons, I seemed to have replaced it with a picking up tea habit. Out of… laziness? I usually only get the tea but once a week orso I ended up adding a breakfast sandwich, sometimes a muffin. And yeah they’re good but holy crap I can eat so much more at home for the same nutritional value than one of those calorie bombs.

Good timing for this challenge too, since apparently donuts got more expensive this month. 😉

source below

source below

I could say convenience but I can buy the exact same tea at work that tastes just as fine, or make some at home. Both save me the slight detour in gas as well as time to go to the drive-through Tim Horton’s, are significantly cheaper and by not going toTim Horton’s it means I’m less likely to order the occasional breakfast sandwich or timbits, which aren’t all that great for my waistline. So Tim’s isn’t even convenient, I don’t go with friends, I’m always on my own through the drive-through and it’s more expensive. Why do I do it? It makes no sense. So I quit for 30 days.

I made it! It wasn’t very hard at at all and I only failed once. On a Tuesday I had to leave in a rush and picked up a Tim’s panini, tea and muffin, since I had to go straight to work afterwards I didn’t have time to stop at home and make anything. It was poor planning and procrastination early in the day actually that ended up in a Tim’s run. I COULD have packed a sandwich earlier or grabbed a granola bar and an apple, but I didn’t.

I didn’t care for the sandwich either, it was just food to keep my body going, and more than twice as costly than making something at home that I really like, that would’ve been better for my waistline anyway with a lot less salt. (Another goal this year: health)

I finished the challenge on April 15th and have been to Tim’s twice since then. In April I’ve now spent $75.17 on eating out, half of which was at the farmer’s market and getting some PEI burger love, the rest was convenience food I could’ve had better versions of at home. And that’s what this is about, to create memories and experiences instead of waste money on things, to put more good stuff into my body and less bad stuff, to be healthier and to become a better version of me, year after year. So that is that. No more Tim’s.

It’s not all that hard, there are tons of people that can’t even afford to buy a coffee….

Which leads me to the next question I’ve been pondering this weekend, what does real hunger feel like?

Back to business!

Hello hello! I arrived back in Canada on Monday and I’m still quite jetlagged but it’s time to get back to work, back to school and back to the blog! How have you all been?

I wanted to write a short blog post right away about my archnemesis; coffee. If you’ve been following along for a while you know I’ve struggled with spending money on picking up coffee at my local coffee shop.

I’m a bit annoyed with myself at having to admit that I’ve gradually started buying  more and more coffees since then and I didn’t fully realize it until I was in Europe for 2 weeks and didn’t want to/couldn’t do buy so many coffees anymore. I noticed it because it would pop up in my head every so often. Since I still don’t drink more than 1 coffee per day I can’t really say I had caffeine withdrawal but I definitely wanted those coffees!

I have an amount in my budget that’s not accounted for, it’s usually a cash amount of about $80 a month that I write off from my budget once every 6 weeks orso. I don’t track that money and have no idea where it goes. I use it to buy the occasional snack at work, a coffee here and there or to go see a movie.  While on my trip I realized I’ve been spending way more on coffee (yet again) than I’ve realized and a good chunk of that cash has been going to my local coffee shop! :facepalm: At $1.49 a pop, (price has gone up since my last post) buying 5 or 6 cups a week is costing me almost $9 a week… that’s $468 over the course of a year! WHAT!?

I’ll be writing quite a bit over the next few weeks some of posts will be about things I’ve realized that I want to achieve and part of that includes really tightening the moneybelt, I want to cut my grocery spending and any other unnecessary spending dramatically for the next four months so coffee has got to go.
In my four days back I’ve so far resisted the urge because it’s such a slippery slope. Before, I allowed myself one coffee a week but that’s obviously not working so I’m going to limit myself to coffees that are offered to me by coworkers, family etc. I’m not going to ask for it and I’m not going to buy any. PERIOD. I’m going to put that cash right in my savings account. I gave away my coffeemaker last year, I realize that’s a cheaper option, to just make it at home but I found that I still end up buying premium coffee, then the filters and the cream which I let go bad half the time since I really don’t use enough of it, so my best option really is just to quit and drink water instead.

I’ll be putting up some posts with pics on how my house renovation has been going and of course a post or two with pics of my trip. I’ve got lots of material lined up and I can’t wait to jump back into the yakezie challenge.

 

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