July 2015 Expenses


The sun setting over Lake Tahoe

Following up a quiet and low spending June, we were apparently trying to make up for lost time and spending in July: We spent some time up in the mountains, exploring some of the beautiful spots our state has to offer (twice!) and also had family over, taking the chance to enjoy some fancy food, drink, and sightseeing.

The rest of the increased expenses revolved around a growing little boy and paying for some planned international travel. We don’t begrudge the former and have no plans on cutting spending there. The travel is something we enjoy, but like everything else needs to be examined to make sure we are making wise decisions. That darn Craigslist gadget addiction may have struck again…

Our commitment to tracking our spending in public has really been helping keep us accountable to our selves, at least at the end of the month, and subconsciously throughout it. Without further ado, let’s dive into where every dollar went this past month!

Category Spending Details
Mortgage $1,793 Mortgage: Principal and Interest
Travel  $1,523  $191 – Long weekend trip to Lake Tahoe area.
$79 – Annual fee on travel reward credit card, fees related to meeting minimum spending
$1,253 – Airfare for a future international trip; this segment was not bookable with airline miles
Health & Fitness  $7  Allergy meds
Groceries  $330  The usual spending
Restaurants & Take-Out $19 Food while out and road tripping
Transportation  $329  $225 – Six month auto insurance premium
$50 – gas
$28 – public transportation (The DJ is back at the office, boo)
$15 – Tolls while sightseeing
$11 – Parking while sightseeing
Bills & Utilities $129 $32 – Gas & Electric
$38 – Waste, Recycle
$59 – Internet
Heir Care $75 The Little Man is getting bigger and required some ‘big boy’ items:
$20 – High chair (Craigslist)
$20 – Ergo baby carrier (Craigslist)
$6 – Plastic bowls and spoons (can you give a baby ceramic and sharp metal instead?)
$5 – Baby gym (Craigslist)
$5 – Foam mats to protect him from his falls (Craigslist)
$20 – Teething toys
$1 – Baby wipes (we normally use cloth wipes but find the disposables handy for travel)
Fur Care $30  Food refill
Shopping  $103 $23 – Replaced our mattress cover, cutting boards
$70 – Nature Mill Composter (Craigslist)
$10 – Misc. toiletries
Other  $39  $39 – Intoxicants (beer was on sale so we stocked up)
Total ~$4,300 Guess we made up for last month’s low spending 😛
Spending Minus Mortgage
~$2,500 Variable spending for the month

This month our spending was higher than “usual” and included a few one-time expenses leading to a 77% savings rate (80% if you count mortgage principal as savings).

For those curious, here’s our thoughts on some noteworthy categories this month


We’re planning a slightly extravagant trip next year; the majority of the route was booked on points, but we had to pay out of pocket for one segment.

We are going to re-calibrate a bit on our travel spending (one of us has a weakness). We do enjoy it and don’t begrudge the spending, but we’re not sure multiple short trips are the most efficient use of funds or time, and we want to make sure we are going places that are really worth it, and not for the sake of just doing it.


Cars: you gotta pay for insurance, gas, tolls.. It’s like they say:

bike vs car

The complaint above might have been an excuse to post that smug and probably unhelpful graphic, because that’s how we role around here.

Baby Stuff

The nice thing about kids stuff is that so much of it exists that you can always find it used. For things that are more convenient to buy new, the nice thing about cheap plastic crap is that it’s cheap affordable.


Another month, another gadget from Craigslist. The nice thing about Craigslist is that once we are done with it, it will be re-sold, it’s like catch and release fishing.

* We will track income, net worth, and progress towards Freedom 35 in our quarterly updates.

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5 Responses

  1. Can’t wait to hear about the international travel plans!

  2. We’re with Fervent — can’t wait to hear where you’re off to! Impressive job, as usual. It’s pretty amazing how little you guys spend — with a baby! — in one of he priciest spots in the country. High five!

  3. It’s good to give yourself a break and spend some quality time with family. Such a beautiful view over Lake Tahoe…

    This composter is actually a really good idea. I’m now thinking about buying one lol 😛

    • The DJ says:

      Completely agree with you on taking a break to relax. We hope to do that more often sooner rather later! Our city does not have compost pick-up, so we decided to do our own composting. It has become a hobby now 🙂

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