Give Me Back My Five Bucks

Oh, hello December!

I’m still here! It has been a crazy few weeks. It’s already December and I’ve realized this blog has been neglected for a month. And for that, I’m sorry. :( Work was starting to get insanely busy at the end of October, and all of sudden, I found myself working those 65 hour/weeks I was trying to avoid. But that’s how it goes sometimes. And now that it looks like everything has calmed down a bit, I can get back on track with managing the rest of my life. :)

Here are a few updates about what’s happening these days:

Finances

The two stocks I’ve invested in are up 46% and 21% from this time last year, so I’m pretty happy about that. My only issue (and it’s a big one), I don’t exactly have an exit strategy. I’ve been doing a bit of reading online, so that will be my my financial focus for the rest of the year.

I’m continuing to invest $600/month into my TD Canada Trust e-series funds. I rebalanced my portfolio back in the beginning of November, and will be looking to increase my contribution rate next year.

Work

I’ve been at this job since March, and have enjoyed my time here. The job offers 3 weeks of holidays, but there’s flexibility in that I can bank extra hours for more time off. That is extremely useful because BF gets 4 weeks of holidays each year, and next year he’ll have 5 weeks.

I think I’m contributing what I can, but I know I could be doing more. The department is getting restructured, and we are bringing in an additional resource which should help balance the workload. That also means I can focus on projects that play into my strengths, instead of getting bogged down with other tasks.

There’s a lot of potential here for marketing to grow, and I think there’s the proper people in management to realize that. I’ve worked for companies before that wouldn’t allow for new ideas to be explored, which hurts both the company and its employees.

Health

My foot has been feeling a lot better, and I’ve come to the conclusion that I probably can’t run long distance and play field hockey at the same time. When I just focus on one activity, my foot seems to hold up fairly well. That’s really disappointing to hear. So if that’s the case, I’ll continue to play field hockey for the next couple of years, and only stick to running during the summer months.

Personal

For the first time in my life, I’ll be splitting up my time at Christmas. For 32 years, my family has pretty much the same routine from December 24-25-26, and I’m the first one that will be breaking it. :| This year, I’ll be spending Christmas Eve with BF’s family (they’re doing a Xmas murder mystery party!), and taking the ferry home in the afternoon Christmas Day. It’ll be weird not to wake up and have breakfast and open presents with the family, but at the same time, I’m excited to create my own holiday tradition as well.

Anyway, that’s the update on life over here. I’ve got a lot of things I want to write about, so stay tuned. :)

October 2014 Goals: Recap

As you can tell, I stopped posting my weekly spending recaps. I started doing them just as a reminder for myself, and since you guys seem pretty divided about them, I thought I’d just stop posting them altogether. :)

This was a decent month. I went over a little on my budget due to an oil change I forgot I needed to have done, but overall I’m pretty happy considering it was a really social and event-filled month. I went to TheatreSports twice, saw a VIFF movie, two concerts, a couple dinners out with friends, and a Halloween party. Not to mention buying two birthday presents this month (noted in the ‘Miscellaneous’ category).

10-Oct-Recap

 Over Budget:

  • Utilities – I didn’t think I’d be turning on the heat this early in the year, but I did. And I paid for it. :)
  • Car & Transportation – I did a lot of driving this month, and it also included an oil change and a new air filter.

Net Worth Change: + $1,463 (1.44%)

Even though the stock market was up and down this month (mostly down), I still managed to post a small gain. This was due to contributions to my TFSA, RRSP, and my mortgage payments.

October 2014 Goals:

  • Sign up for education info sessions. CHECK! I signed up for two sessions. The first one is in 2 weeks, and the next one is 2 weeks after that. I’m excited to learn more. It feels empowering being able to take control of my future and improve myself.
  • Rebalance my Retirement Portfolio. CHECK! I didn’t have to move around too much money, but it was good to take a look at what my investments have been doing over the past year. Sometimes I feel like my contributions aren’t adding up as quickly as I want them to, but I need to remember that I won’t need this money for another 25-30 years. :)
  • Pull my credit report. CHECK! Everything looks normal to me.
  • Declutter my house. PASS. I cleaned up, but definitely didn’t declutter. Typical.

Looking at surgery

New runners: Brooks Adrenaline!

New runners: Brooks Adrenaline!Earlier this year, I mentioned how I wanted to put big travel plans on hold because I could have upcoming medical expenses that could cost me thousands. Well, now that I know a little bit more about the cost, I can share with you. :)

You probably know I’ve been having foot problems for over a year. After finding a passion for distance running last year, I injured myself in August of last year. Since then, I’ve stopped and started training programs a couple of times due to this nagging injury. Well, a few weeks ago I finally went to see a podiatrist, got x-rays, and today I went in and discussed the options available to me.

Basically, I need to get bunion surgery at some point. The bones in my big toe are drifting farther away from my foot, and surgery is the only answer to permanently fixing my problem. Otherwise it’s only going to get worse.

It will cost a total of $6,000 for both feet through the podiatrist (each foot has to be done separately), plus a recovery time of 4-5 weeks for each surgery. 2 weeks in a cast (1 week at home), and then 2-3 weeks of recovery/no exercise until I can start moving again. The cost of the surgery doesn’t worry me as much as the actual recovery, but $6,000 is still quite a lot of money.

So the only other option I have is to get a referral from my doctor to see an orthopedic surgeon. The same procedure done by an orthopedic surgeon should be covered under medical. But the problem is, it’s hard to get into see a surgeon, and the wait time could be extremely long (versus just a month or two with the podiatrist). I’ve booked an appointment to see my doctor in order to get that orthopedic surgeon referral, so fingers crossed! :)

In the meantime, I’m getting custom orthotics made by the podiatrist (covered under my extended health insurance). It won’t solve my problem, and my feet will still hurt, but it will help a little bit. And my bones will stop moving as fast as they have been.

Has anyone done this surgery before? I’d love to hear about cost and recovery time!

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