Thursday, December 29, 2011

2011: The Good, The Bad, The Ugly

It's time to start my new budget for 2012, which is surreal, to say the least.  I'm still not sure how much I'm actually going to be making at my new job though, so I can't really set up my monthly goals, and (nerdy confession time) it's bothering me more than I thought it would.  Since new job comes with health and dental plans as well as union dues, I'm not sure how much I'm going to actually be taking home.  Plus, my expenses will be changing based on re-upping my social life and driving less.  CHANGES!!!  ACK!

Couldn't resist
It's all good.

Rather than get hung up on the future, let's take a look back at the financial year that was--2011.

The Good:
--I saved a lot this year.  My savings account was very depleted from three months of unemployment in 2009 and from one year of only working 19 hours a week.  Once I got the second job, I became a mad saver.  *pat on back for that*

--I started my Roth IRA and contributed $2750.00, which is pretty alright for having it for only like seven months.  Naturally, the market took a dump as soon as I opened this account, so I'm actually down right now, but I have faith in capitalism!!  My retirement is going to be so sexy.

--We didn't turn the heat on until mid-December!  I have no idea how much that saves, but it's still awesome.

--I managed to still have a few mini-vacations this year, despite my ridiculous schedule--New Orleans, New Brunswick, Philadelphia. Plus, that conference I went to in New Orleans included tons of free food and drink, which I like very much.

--As far as personal, non-financial goals this year, I made goals to run 750 miles and read 150 books.  As of today, I've read 154 books (and I still have two days left!), and run 918 miles.  Not to bad for a girl with only two days off a month.

The Bad:
--I went over in most budget categories.  I was going over when I was doing most of the grocery shopping, and now that we've got the shared household card, we're still over.  Obviously, I need to reassess where the money is going, and hopefully, do more cooking for both of us in the new year, which should be easier since we'll both be home at the same time.

--I spent a LOT of money on running gear and races.  The good news about that is that now I have all this running gear, I should be set.  The bad news is that I ran 10 races this past year, and that is not cheap.  I have a plan for the coming year, and I'm sticking to it.

The Ugly:
--I spent so much money on clothes this past year.  I've been like a crazy person and even though I keep saying I'll stop, I do not stop!

--This past year, I have spent $1477 on gas.  That figure makes me physically ill, but it's actually less than I had budgeted for since gas prices have gone down.

Now I need to make a plan for 2012, or at least as much of a plan as I can.  Stay tuned!!

How did you do this past year, financewise?


  1. It sounds like you had a great year! Workout clothes are my weakness too! You must be a fast reader! 154 books is impressive!

  2. I did... not so great w/ budgets. But I've spent the year actually paying attention to my finances, which I like to think is the first step towards actually living within my budget! Sounds like you did a pretty great job!

  3. @Annabelle That's totally the first step! It's a lifestyle change, not a diet/ a marathon not a sprint / other platitudes that indicate slow and steady is the way to go.