May 2014 Goals: Recap - Give Me Back My Five Bucks

May 2014 Goals: Recap

Well, I’m under budget this month so that’s the good news. :) The bad news is I had earmarked $350 for a potential flight to Edmonton for next month (which likely isn’t going to happen anymore), so if you take that into consideration, I’d be a little bit over budget.

I was well under my already low projected monthly food budget, but that’s because of a few factors: at the end of April we went on a huge Costco run (where my share was $130!) so we had all the essentials ready to go. All I needed to buy were fresh fruits and veggies for the month, which doesn’t cost a lot at all. We mostly shop at No Frills, where I can get away with spending $25-30 week if I’m cooking simple meals. And the other factor? We ate in restaurants a lot this month. It was fun to see so many people, but after the trip to Victoria, all I wanted to do was detox and get back to a regular routine of eating healthy.

Gas was also really low this month because I commuted to work mostly from BF’s house. Likely that will change throughout the summer as life gets busier with sports, friends, and outdoor activities. Plus, I really do miss staying at my house. I spend a lot each month to have it, so I want to be there a bit more often.

05-May-Recap

Over Budget

  • Entertainment – there were a few meals out with friends that I hadn’t planned for, but I’m actually surprised that this number is so low.
  • Fitness – I didn’t expect to buy a tennis racket and sign up for lessons this month. I’m glad that I did, because it seems like a really fun sport and a good way to stay in shape during the field hockey off-season. But yeah, it was somewhat impulsive.

Net Worth Change: - $2,955 ( – 2.98%)

Okay, wait. This drop isn’t as drastic as it seems. Or maybe it is. :) I updated the value of my car to reflect what Kelley Blue Book says it’s worth based on its current condition, sold privately. It’s not exactly the most accurate way of measuring a depreciating asset, but it’s what I’ve always done, so to be consistent, that’s how I’ll keep doing it.

Without the drop in net worth due to my car value, I would have actually been up + $1,336.

May 2014 Goals:

  • Contribute $800 into my Retirement Portfolio. CHECK! My normal contribution amount is $750. The extra $50 went towards my TFSA.
  • Earn $1,200 in freelance income. FAIL. I only brought in $460, but I have $1,100 worth of invoices that are owed to me. Some of them are severely overdue, so I’ve been following up.
  • Pay attention to my health. CHECK! I cut back on my intake of refined sugars and salty snacks (didn’t eat a single chip this month, which has to be a record for me). I also took a multivitamin most days, drank more water, and have been exercising a lot more. As a result, I dropped 4 pounds this month. :)
  • Walk 100,000 steps per week. CHECK! My original FitBit goal was to walk an average of 10,000 steps per day, but after realizing the goal wasn’t challenging enough, I upped it to 100,000 steps per week. And I’m really happy to say that I surpassed that amount and walked 460,805 steps during May – and that doesn’t even include today or tomorrow’s step totals. :) This is due to being more active at work, walking a lot in the evenings, and starting to get back into running.

may-fitbit-challenge

  • Bring my lunch to work every day. PASS. I did bring my lunch a couple of times this month, but I’m giving myself a pass because the few days I did that, it was because we were coming back from a trip the night before, or something unexpected came up and it couldn’t really be helped.
  • Stay on budget. PASS. Technically, I was $338.81 under budget for the month. But if I had bought that plane ticket to Edmonton, I would have been over budget by $10-15.

There you have it – my budget recap for May. Any comments or questions? :)

About Krystal Yee

I'm a writer, personal finance blogger, and marketing professional based in Vancouver. I'm a former Toronto Star (Moneyville) columnist, author of The Beginner's Guide to Saving and Investing, and co-founder of the Canadian Personal Finance Conference. When I'm not working, you can usually find me running, playing field hockey, or plotting my next adventure.

12 comments

  1. I’ve been reading your blog for quite awhile now but I don’t think I’ve ever commented. I just wanted to say that I really love these kinds of posts. I find it helps me to read about how others are spending their money and what goals they have made for themselves. It helps to see how others have to change and adjust their budgets based on things that come up or plans that have been made.Sometimes it even makes me want to start a blog myself. I feel that perhaps if I had to post a monthly recap it would make me feel more accountable when I go over budget and in return help me stick to my budget better. But I know I’m not much of a writer.

    Have a wonderful weekend. :)

    • Hi Trista – thanks for your comment, I appreciate it! :) That’s actually how I started writing my blog… reading other people’s monthly recaps and progress reports made me want to start GMBMFB in order to help me stay accountable for my actions. I also think that when you put yourself out there, it’s really helpful to get support, advice, and encouragement from others too. You don’t have to be a writer to start a blog. It’s just for fun. :)

      • Thanks Krystal. Perhaps I’ll think about starting one this fall. Right now my budget is rather short sighted and definitely not one that most PF bloggers would support. I’m looking at a much more balanced allocation of funds come September. Just curious… have you come across any PF bloggers from Newfoundland? One thing I notice when reading your blog and Cait’s is that your grocery bills can be so much less than mine.

      • Hello Trista, new reader and follower here. I too am wondering about your grocery bills. Are you including eating out there, or is that in entertainment? Thanks for this blog. I plan to ‘do’ it.

        Sincerely
        Septugenarian

  2. Trista, I moved from Vancouver to St. Anthony and I noticed that, too. In BC, I used to be able to fill up my grocery cart with veggies for $30 at one of the little, independent shops. Good times!

    • tristapomroy@gmail.com

      I once paid over $5 for three apples here in St. John’s. I’m envious of the lower cost of produce on the mainland. I think it’s fresher there too. Being on an island works against us in that regard.

  3. Love these goal posts! You set fantastic goals, encompassing every area of your life. I keep coming back to your blog to learn from your goals and how locked down your budget it. Keep up the good work!

  4. Yup, that is one of the very few negatives about living on the rock.

  5. After reading the blog for a little while, I admit that I’ve been curious about how you balance owning a home versus staying at your bf’s when you do have some set costs that don’t change whether or not you’re staying at your house? I can’t help but think about this when staying with my own bf more than I was going home became a question of economics, where I was still responsible for my own rent and home costs but was also contributing to his household by virtue of being in his apartment so often. Thanks!

    • Yeah it’s definitely a bit of a challenge to find the right balance. The only thing I contribute to is groceries, which we split for the most part. And we also split the cost of a parking pass for me close to his apartment building. That’s the only way it makes financial sense to us. Otherwise we would likely spend a more equal amount of time at my place. I think it just depends on what you and your BF think is fair, bc it’s different for each couple.

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