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Archive for January, 2023

January Check In

January 30th, 2023 at 02:26 pm


Mortgage −$115,590.99 (-$241.61)
Land Loan -$10,673.24 (-$187.63)
Hospital Bill - $1,188.02 (-$75)


Roth IRAs +$22,938 (+$1,766)
401K +$46,828 (+$3,968)
Emergency Fund +$4,798 (-$2,527)
Animal Fund +$1,686 (+$5)
Car Fund +$20 (-$0)
HSA +$1,383 (+$184)

Overall: +$3,900.24

A good month thanks to the markets bouncing up. I had to pull from our savings for our 6-month car insurance. This is a planned expense that I use that account for besides emergencies. But the biggest loss in savings was due to putting a deposit on a vacation home rental for later in the year. Most of the money will be reimbursed to me by my family (we are sharing the rental home) so it's temporary.

I was able to catch up on all the budget overages this month and put some money back for next month’s budget. I am also owed a couple hundred for web design so that will give me gas money for February and allow me to replenish my checking account buffer a bit.

Still waiting on my Paypal 1099, arg. Hopefully tomorrow so I can submit our taxes.

Expected Tax Return

January 20th, 2023 at 04:03 am

I haven't filed yet because I am waiting on one more thing, but we finally got my husband's W2 and I can make a pretty good estimate on what we are getting back. It looks like right around $9,000, which is great! I was honestly only expecting at least $4k with hoping for up to $8k, so even better than I planned.

This is the first year completely without my W2 income and my old job was a major tax leech.  I was expecting our refund to go up, but then a lot of things that we got extra credit for the last couple years got removed like the extra kid payments and the charity contribution bonus.  I've heard lots of complaints about the refunds dropping this year.  Pleasantly surprised. I know we could reduce our deductions and get more money in the paycheck each week, but I kind of prefer the big chunk. Something to consider now that we have kids and get a refund each year. Before I was always concerned about paying in because we were so close to the line each year with my income. But without my job and kids lowering our taxes we may need to change things.

Crazy how much tax I had to pay on my previous tiny W2 income, which was part of the reason for quitting. The numbers just didn’t make it worth it. My web design last year only netted a little over $1,000 after all my expenses, BEFORE taxes. So barely worth it, but it does pay for a lot of business-related subscriptions and programs I use.  

As far as a plan for the return here are the current thoughts:

$3,000                   IRA

$3,000                   Vacation

$500                       Christmas

$300                       Clothing

$100                       Date/Dinner

$750                       Buffer

$1,000                   HSA

$350                       MISC


That would complete all my financial goals for the year, save some for future vacation, Christmas and clothing expenses, and get my buffer/EF back up where I like it to be. Husband asked to use a bit to go out to dinner, and the left over $350 would just be put wherever needed at the time or saved.

Plan is subject to change along with actual refund amount we get back, but this is a pretty good start.

2023 Goals

January 7th, 2023 at 03:33 pm

This year the goals were hard to figure out. Our budget is going to be super tight so honestly the main goal is to just survive without accruing more debt.  Which puts us at our first goal.


Increase Net Worth

2022 was the first year we had net worth loss. This was a combination of overspending, new land debt and market decline. For 2023 I want to go back to saving more than we are spending overall. Which I think the next two goals will help with.


Save $1,000 Extra in HSA

We already do an automatic paycheck deposit weekly but it’s not enough to cover our entire OOP max for medical bills. We don’t have enough in the weekly check to set anymore up on auto pay so I would like to send more directly over the year with windfalls. $1,000 is kind of an arbitrary number, I want to deposit enough to cover all our medical bills for the year so we can use tax free money. This number could be $0-$2,900 depending on how health issues go throughout the year. $1k is a good starting point.


Save $3,000 in IRAs

I was hoping to save $5,000 this year so we would hit 15% of our income but it is looking unrealistic for our budget. We’ll start with this and see how it goes.  


2023 is going to be the year for hustling and scrounging. With our barebones basic budget covered by paychecks, spending and saving are going to have to be fought for. At least I am aware in advance so I can tighten the purse strings and start looking for ways to save/make money. Our first big decision will be our tax return. It is going to be tough to decide where the money should be allocated. I am eagerly awaiting our W2 so I can get a rough estimate of what I’m working with. Hoping the return is bigger than I’m expecting and I get a nice surprise. It would be great to fund the IRAs and HSA at the beginning of the year.

2022 Net Worth End of Year Update

January 5th, 2023 at 07:41 pm

Cash/Liquid Savings:

$1,686 Animal Fund ($1,214)

$6,042 Escrow Fund ($7,537)

$2,062 Checkings ($6,427)

$20 Car Fund ($20

$1,119 HSA ($1,491)

$10,929 Total Liquid Savings ($16,689)


$42,860 DH's 401K ($45,294)

$5,050 DH's IRA ($5,463)

$16,122 My IRA ($15,337)

$64,032 Total Retirement ($66,094)


-$115,833 Mortgage (-$119,044)

-$10,861 Land Loan (-$0)

-$1,263 Hospital Loan (-$0)

-$127,957 Total Liabilities (-$119,044)


$185,000 House
$20,000 in Cars (not counted in figures)

2022 Total Net Worth: $132,004 ($148,739)
2022 Net Worth without Mortgage & House: $62,837 ($82,783)

Numbers in () are 2021 figures for comparison.

This is the first year we have lost progress that I can remember. I do know the land we purchased increased our house value but I'm not sure by how much without a new appraisal, and the markets are down even though we kept contributing this year. Sadness.

A wake up call that in 2023 we need to do better at more saving, less spending, and knocking down our debts again. I'll have to think a while on specific goals to set for the year with our tight budget.  

December Check In

January 5th, 2023 at 07:20 pm


Mortgage −$115,832.60 (-$241.04)
Land Loan -$10,860.87 (-$184.25)
Hospital Bill - $1,263.02 (+$1,263.02)


Roth IRAs +$21,172 (-$825)
401K +$42,860 (-$1,108)
Emergency Fund +$7,325 (+$49)
Maternity Fund +$0 (-500)
Animal Fund +$1,686 (+$4)
Car Fund +$20 (-$0)
HSA +$1,199 (+$184)

Overall: -$3,033.73

Bad way to end the year. Received a large medical bill and several more hospital bills pending and more sure to come with our deductible starting over and our child’s continuing health problems. We made the decision to just do 0% monthly payments on it for now until our HSA builds back up. Once we are in better shape we will pay it off. But I have a feeling we are going to need every dollar for more medical stuff in the next few months.

I would love to be able to fill the HSA completely each year so it would 100% cover our OOP max, but on the weeks my husband doesn’t work overtime we would be short. So at this time we have to scrounge $2,500 each year from overtime to pay the entirety of our medical bills. Hopefully next year we can bump it up even a little, and hopefully eventually we will be healthy and stop having astronomical medical bills every year.

 Markets are down. Used up the last of the maternity fund I had saved. So happy I was able to put that back and then “pay myself” for over an entire year. I’m going to miss it for sure.

I will compare our end of year net worth in a separate post.