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September 2015 Results

October 5, 2015

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My September budget results are live! Did I stick to my budget, or was I way off this month? Check it out @shoeaholicnomore!

These last few months haven’t been great in terms of my progress and it’s been a bit frustrating. I have no one to blame but myself for most of the lack of progress around here. (Myself and my car repairs.)

It gets me down sometimes (like now) and makes me realize that I have to put in more effort to stay in control of my finances. What usually happens is my spending slips when I’m busy, tired, stressed, or just not paying attention to my purchases.

Yesterday I returned a pair of boots that I decided I didn’t really need after all. They were on the approved shopping list of my shopping ban, but I decided I’d rather put that money back on my card instead because even though they fit me (which is hard to find) I didn’t love them.

It’s a small win, but one that made me feel good about my decision.

There is one other factor that I really struggle with when it comes to my spending. I’ve told my family about my debt and my desire to get out of debt once and for all. But sometimes I think they either forget or just don’t take me seriously. Once in a while my dad will suggest I buy things that I don’t really need and I always end up giving in. Does anyone have any suggestions of how to handle this pressure?

Here’s how I did with my September budget and my yearly goals:

2015 Goals:

  1. Increase emergency fund savings account to $1,500. – Fail – My emergency fund was decreased by $345 this month as I put that toward the car repairs I had to pay for. If my income keeps up at pace it has been the past few weeks though, maybe I can still get this one accomplished by the end of the year.
  2. Demolish $5,000 worth of debt (principal). This works out to $416.67/month. ($5,000 goal includes mortgage debt pay down.) – Fail – I had a debt increase again this month. Ouch!
    1. This also includes paying off my 0% interest promotion for my computer by October 2015. – DONE!
  3. Paint and prep home office by April 13. (My birthday!) MUST BE USABLE BY THIS TIME! – DONE!
  4. Attend FinCon15 and pay for everything in cash! – DONE! I came in under budget for FinCon and I have paid off my travel credit card for all the expenses already.
  5. Quit my full-time job by December 31,2015 to freelance full-time. (I may pick up some additional hours at my part-time job to help make ends meet for a while.) – Pass – I quit my PT job in June and I quit my full-time job effective July 31!
  6. Limit spending on clothing, shoes, and accessories to $500 for the whole year! – Fail – I’m not tracking this anymore.
  7. Get rid of more books throughout the year than I get. – Pass-ish? – I got rid of a ton of books in my garage sale. I have only gotten 2-3 new books this year. Even though I’d call this a pass, I’m not tracking it anymore.

Debt Totals:

8/30/2015 – $131,330.43 (including mortgage)
$16,809.03 (w/o mortgage)

9/30/2015 – $132,099.89 (including mortgage)
$17,797.67 (w/o mortgage)

Difference – +$769.46 including mortgage
+$988.64 w/o mortgage


8/30/2015 – $961.51
9/30/2015 – $616.23
Difference – $345.28 Decrease


I don’t even feel like sharing my budget. The numbers above speak for themselves.

Right now I’m feeling pretty upset with myself for this last month’s spending. I’m glad I’m analyzing it now while I still have a chance to do better for the rest of the year and the rest of this month.

Here’s to really cracking down for October.

How was your September?

My September budget results are live! Did I stick to my budget, or was I way off this month? Check it out @shoeaholicnomore!

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20 responses to “September 2015 Results

  1. Hey Kayla,

    Don’t get too down about a month that doesn’t feel as successful as you’d hoped. The important thing, in my opinion, is that you’re being so careful about tracking your spending and evaluating it in the context of your goals. If you weren’t doing that, then you wouldn’t even know that this month wasn’t ideal, and you wouldn’t be able to reassess your spending or make changes for October onward. For myself, I feel so incredibly grateful that I started tracking my spending nine months ago — it opened my eyes to so many things that I never would have seen otherwise.

    Anyway, each new month is a clean slate, kind of, when it comes to finances! I too spent more than I had wanted to in September (needed to buy some new professional clothes for work reasons…), BUT I decided that for the month of October I’m challenging myself to buy zero restaurant food (including zero takeout), and cook all my meals, which I’m betting will save me a ton of money and hopefully be fun too!

    What are you doing to crack down for October?

  2. Don’t be too hard on yourself Kayla. We all probably have that one person in our family or group of friends who pressures us to make financial decisions that aren’t the best but deep down they probably mean well and don’t mean any harm. I had to glare at my mom through the phone a few months ago when she suggested that I finance another car…smh! The way I see it, it’s a new month and another chance to buckle down and make some progress! 🙂

    1. Thanks Chonce! I love my dad and I know he doesn’t mean to “tempt” me or convince me to make the wrong choice, but it sure doesn’t help my finances because I’m bad at telling him “no”.

  3. I agree with Chonce! Don’t be so hard on yourself. I think you’re doing a great job. The reality is that there will be months that you don’t meet your goals. The question is-how do you manage those moments?

  4. September was rough for us, too! We had an unexpected cash flow problem when the day job didn’t pan out as I was expecting. Think we’ve got our ducks back in their rows this month, though! Thank goodness for emergency funds!

  5. I know how frustrating it can be when you experience unexpected bills that derail your savings and debt reduction efforts. You cannot always control what happens to you, i.e. your car breaks down, but the one thing you can always control is how you respond to life’s curveballs, because they are always going to happen and probably at the worst time possible. So please don’t beat yourself up over them, Kayla. Learn what you could have done differently, if anything, and move forward. Plus it sounds to me like you’re taking the rights steps to get you back on track, which is what really matters after a setback. Recognizing that the boots didn’t mean as much to as you as putting more money back in your pocket, especially since you didn’t love the boots, is great growth! As far as when you feel pressured by your Dad (or anyone else), simply remind them that you’re focused on other priorities right now. While not everyone will respect that, most will.

    1. Thanks for your advice Shannon. I’m really trying to get back on track with my budget and spending this month. Hopefully I’ll see an improvement.

  6. Even though you had some unexpected expenses, you had a major win returning those boots. I think having the mindset of not buying things if you don’t just love them will save you more in the long run. I’m sure your dad is trying to be helpful when he suggests things you may “need” and it can be so hard to say no. When I have similar situations, I try to say something like “I’ll see if I can work that in the budget” so I’m not outright saying no and actually considering the suggested purchase while reminding the person that I have to prioritize spending. Hope this month works out well for you!

    1. Thanks Jessica! I love your idea of telling him I’m considering his suggestion but that I still have other priorities with my money right now. I’ll try that!

    1. The car repairs and washing machine repairs I talk about in my post is what the difference and what made September a bad month.

  7. Way to go on returning the shoes! It can be tough sometimes. But it sounds like you probably have plenty. Sorry you didn’t make all your goals, but at least you’re trying, right?

    It was nice to meet you, if very briefly, at FinCon. I hope you got a lot out of it!

    1. Thanks Abigail! I hope we can chat more next year at FinCon. It was so crazy trying to make it to all the meetings and sessions I wanted to go to.

  8. Hey Kayla, my crummy budget and feelings are why I didn’t even bother to update my entire blog in September! So hey, at least you stuck to it and didn’t go missing like I did 🙂 I’m really sorry you didn’t have a great budgeting month – I totally, 100% feel you. My debt went up last month too! But hey, we have plans and we will get through it. Sending you good vibes!

    1. Thanks Melissa! so glad I’m not the only one who had a bad budget month. I had a good income month, but a bad budget month. I wish I could get them both good at the same time, haha.

  9. I tend to ignore my finances too when I get overwhelmed with other things. The important thing is to take a long hard look at your budget and get yourself back on track. Otherwise it just spirals out of control and nobody wants to see that happen 🙂

    1. I know, I definitely don’t want to get out of control with my budget or spending. It’s so hard to get it back under control once you go over. I guess that’s what I need to work on the most.

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