Category: Our Finances

January 2017 Frugal Momster Expense Report

Crab is streamlining his cooking skills.

I mentioned last month that I streamlined our finances to organize our income and expense reports better each month. In doing so, I made putting together these expense reports even easier!

By combining categories, and eliminating others, I’ve simplified an already pretty simple budget and expense recording process. I’m somewhat shocked at how much easier this month’s report was to create.

In other financial news, I’ve taken a free course on travel hacking credit cards. As I explore travel hacking, I’ll share our experience.

So far, it is very enlightening, and I’ve realized how many bonuses we’ve left off the table in the past several years since our financial turnaround. Several significant renovations could’ve covered some excellent travel we’ve been missing.

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The Frugal Momster Looks Back at Our 2016 Expenses

I’ve already started working on our taxes for 2016. I know, I know, I’m am over-achiever.

Usually, I have our taxes completed by mid-February, because I like to know as early as possible how much we’ll owe in April or if we’ll be getting a small amount back sooner.

My goal each year is to break-even or as close to as possible, though we have always owed additional to the state. We’ll know in a few weeks how successful we were for 2016.

Why break-even?

Well, I don’t like to loan money to the federal government. Instead, I like to keep that money in my pocket all year and use it how we decide.

If you are getting back a big refund each year, they are using your money for an entire year before you get it back – for free. I’d rather keep that money to save, pay off debt, or invest. If you like getting a big refund here are some good uses for it. Continue reading…

December 2016 Frugal Momster Expense Report

The end of the year was quite a doozy for us! We went on a bit of a shopping spree for household items and various projects in addition to the holiday shopping and gift giving season. You’ll want to sit down for this one.

Chimney Sweep, Fireback & Vertical Rack

Our new beautiful fire was burning hot.

The first of our major costs was scheduling to get our chimney cleaned and inspected.

Also, we decided to purchase a reflective fireback and a vertical fire grate since we had some difficulty with smoking in our fireplace. These two combined cost well over $1,000 when all was said and done.

The fire grate that was in the fireplace when we bought our house was rather large and came out a bit too far in the front of the fireplace. Couple that with two amateur fire starters and there might be a small issue… Since we started using the new, and rather expensive, new chimney fireback and rack we’ve had several astonishing fires that burn hot and smoke-free.
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