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It’s July recap and August goals time! I am so excited to start with August goals, but I think we should probably go in order. Are you ready for this? (Answer: No.)
Well, let’s just get this out of the way now: I did not, in no way at all, meet my Weather Wednesday’s goals. To recap about Weather Wednesday: my goal this year is to save as much money as the highest recorded temperature every Wednesday. If it’s 115 degrees (46 degrees Celsius for my non-US friends), then that means I have to save $115 for that week.
At the time, it sounded so wonderful and attainable. And then Phoenix summertime kicked in (and yes, I’m a Phoenix native. Yet the heat gets me every time.) Life got real.
What I should have saved, based on Weather.com’s official observed forecasts:
- July 2 – $109
- July 9 – $99
- July 16 – $106
- July 23 – $113 (I recorded 118 degrees that day, but let’s go with Weather.com’s optimistic count!)
- July 30 – $110
For a grand total of $537. Now, based on what I’ve been saving in previous months, I was averaging around $400 a month, so $537 would have been a stretch. However, not necessarily an impossible stretch. I evaluate my finances on a handy-dandy Excel sheet twice a month (same time I get paid) and if I notice I’m not saving as much as I want, I usually wind down my spending in the latter half of the month.
However, fate had different plans for me this month. Can I please break down what happened to us this month (I promise I’ll get to what I did save soon)?:
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- Our dishwasher died – granted, an old dishwasher, but still. Dead! And, like I told my parents when they asked us why we were buying a new one: I went for 9 years without a dishwasher in college, in random apartments, and in grad school, and I could just not bear the thought of washing more dishes by hand.
- One of the windows in our car cracked and needed to be replaced ASAP – you know how sometimes you get a crack in your windshield from a rock in the road (or from an ax…) and you just deal with it until it starts impeding your view? Yeah, that was not this scenario. The cracked window actually was mostly covered by insurance, but some of it wasn’t, so I’m still counting it.
- B got a flat tire and it needed to be replaced – yup, pretty self-explanatory.
Those things, on their own, aren’t terrible, but July was also a very expensive month in terms of electricity (the summer in Phoenix is like the winter on the East Coast. Our rates skyrocket in the summer, so electricity payments are extra terrible, then drop down to normal rates in the winter. Cruel!) Gas also cost more than I budgeted this month, so that didn’t help.
So what did I end up saving this month? A grand total of $0. Oooh, it gets better – I actually dipped into my emergency savings to cover some of the unexpected expenses this month!
All that said: This is why we have an emergency savings account. For emergencies. I would say that a flat tire and a dead dishwasher are emergencies (although some would disagree about the dishwasher part. To those people I say: come wash my dishes, then.)
In the past, I would have gotten upset at myself for not making my savings goals, but I’m at the point where, if no one is dying and we still have a bit of an emergency savings account, then we’re just going to chalk it up to a rough month. What’s done is done! On to August goals!
- Actually save the Weather Wednesday’s amount! – August should be equally as hot as July, so it looks like I’ll be looking to save around $500 again.
- Only eat out once a week – B and I did pretty well with that this month. In fact, I think we only went out to eat 3/4 weekends, so let’s see if we can continue that!
- Spend >$60 in lunches/happy hours out with co-workers and friends – I spent slightly less than $50 out on lunches with co-workers in July. I know networking is important, and I have a lot of lunches scheduled in August, but I want to keep it less than $60 this month.
- On a personal note: Go to the darn gym at least 3 times a week! – I don’t know why this is so hard for me. Yes, it is hot outside, but I can go swimming at the gym or I can work out in air conditioning. Just do it, self.
That’s it! So what do you think of this July recap and my August goals? Don’t say you think they’re unattainable. Unless something else randomly breaks in our house, I think it might be possible. I’m ever the optimist!
Did you make any July goals for yourself, and how did they go? Do you plan on making August goals, and what are they?