Let's go Back Home - Frugal chicos journal

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EdithKeeler
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Re: Let's go Back Home - Frugal chicos journal

Post by EdithKeeler » Fri Mar 09, 2018 7:45 am

I freakin’ LOVE Aldi. I have recently taken over more of the grocery shopping for my mom; my brother has been doing it, but my mom has been frustrated with some things he does. She asked me to shop for her last week and I warned her I was getting everything I could at Aldi. Well, I seriously stocked her up for about $56. She was thrilled.

My only complaint about my local Aldi is that their produce is not always the best. Sometimes really good, sometimes rough.

What I think I appreciate most about Aldi is the simplicity—100 cereals can be paralyzing (read “The Paradox of Choice”—great book), it’s small, the checkers are blazing fast, and you don’t have to navigate through a bunch of sections you only need occasionally (bird food, hardware, vitamins....). Huge Aldi fan here. (You could bring a flask of wine to Aldi.... pretty sure no one would care....)

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bryan
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Re: Let's go Back Home - Frugal chicos journal

Post by bryan » Fri Mar 09, 2018 4:59 pm

Frugalchicos wrote:
Thu Mar 08, 2018 9:35 pm
try to guess how much I spent in buying half of the shop:

.... yes, all that
If you ever want to add photos to your journal, something like this would be a good use of it!

I've never been to Aldi's :( Seems like any time I move I run away from an eventual Aldi's opening shop.

Jason
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Re: Let's go Back Home - Frugal chicos journal

Post by Jason » Fri Mar 09, 2018 5:09 pm

Frugalchicos wrote:
Thu Mar 08, 2018 9:35 pm

Before you read the total price, try to guess how much I spent
ERE Price is Right!!!!

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Frugalchicos
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Re: Let's go Back Home - Frugal chicos journal

Post by Frugalchicos » Sun Mar 11, 2018 9:06 pm

@ EdithKeeler - Yep, simplicity, that's the key. Quick, easy, cheap and good product.

@ Bryan - Here we go some pics of the food I cooked over the weekend. :)

@Jason - You were the winner. ERE Price!! :lol:

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Chicken noodle soup I made with the extra meat and veggies

Jason
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Re: Let's go Back Home - Frugal chicos journal

Post by Jason » Mon Mar 12, 2018 6:47 am

You and Frugalchica should film yourselves budgeting, creating a shopping list, shopping at Aldi’s, making the meal, serving the meal, eating the meal, using the leftovers to make another meal, eating the leftover meal and send it to Aldi’s to get them to sponsor a cooking show featuring their store.

We watch these shows like Ugly Delicious and all they do is make you hungry for the food they are making.

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Frugalchicos
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Re: Let's go Back Home - Frugal chicos journal

Post by Frugalchicos » Mon Mar 12, 2018 7:01 am

:lol: :lol: - Jason, you can’t imagine how many times we talked about it!!

Jason
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Re: Let's go Back Home - Frugal chicos journal

Post by Jason » Mon Mar 12, 2018 9:08 am

I think at the end of it you should say something like:

“Aldi’s - We love it so much that we don’t care that they may have been Nazi Sympathizers”

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bryan
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Re: Let's go Back Home - Frugal chicos journal

Post by bryan » Tue Mar 13, 2018 6:59 pm

Lookin good!

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Frugalchicos
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Re: Let's go Back Home - Frugal chicos journal

Post by Frugalchicos » Mon Apr 09, 2018 8:20 pm

Time for monthly update. Not much to report, just the freakin stock market is too volatile, decided to save 20-25K in cash. It will take us a couple of months.

We also started the English Teacher certificate, so far so good. We will need to do some homework on the side with grammar teaching, etc..


MARCH INCOME – $10,213.45 ($20,213.45 with bonus)
Chico’s Salary – $4,163.45
Chica’s Salary – $5,225
Roommate Rent – $825
Bonus – $10,000

MARCH EXPENSES – $4,323.91 ($3,175.31 if subtracting principal payment)
Mortgage: $1,978.60 (note: $1,148.60 went to principal, counting that as a savings)
HOA: $247.83
Car Insurance: $65.49
Gas (Car): $106.16
Groceries: $404.47
Cellphones: $21.74 (note: Chica’s work pays her cellphone bill, this is just Chico’s phone plan with Lycamobile)
Internet: $56.30
Gas (House): $88.63
Electricity: $44.05
Chica’s Gym: $39.99
Chico’s Gym: $29.99
Misc./Entertainment: $665.66 (mostly just dinner out with each other and friends, coffee study dates and a last minute trip to San Antonio for Chica, etc.)
TEFL Course Fee: $574

This month, we saved 69% of our take home salary. Note: this doesn’t include any 401K contributions or retirement plans.

CURRENT ASSETS: $269,089.10 ($15,796.16 increase over last month)
Cash savings: $5,952.43
Investments: $110,033.92
Chico’s Retirement: $8,973.29
Chica’s 401K: $42,999.58
Home Equity: $101,129.88 (not counting appreciation)

Image

Jason
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Re: Let's go Back Home - Frugal chicos journal

Post by Jason » Tue Apr 10, 2018 10:46 am

The Frugaljasonos had similar discussion about increasing cash reserves due to stock market volatility.

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Frugalchicos
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Re: Let's go Back Home - Frugal chicos journal

Post by Frugalchicos » Tue Apr 10, 2018 12:20 pm

Jason wrote:
Tue Apr 10, 2018 10:46 am
The Frugaljasonos had similar discussion about increasing cash reserves due to stock market volatility.
Yeah, it doesn't feel good when you put $1,000 and 2 minutes later you are down $2,000...

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Frugalchicos
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Re: Let's go Back Home - Frugal chicos journal

Post by Frugalchicos » Thu Apr 26, 2018 10:48 am

I have a few updates:

Expenses:
- Today I broke the 6 month clothes ban. I totally renovated my pants selection. All of them were like 4+ years and fit me like fisherman pants (shrank like 2.5 inches). I also lost weight around the waist and stomach and gain musculature, so I am more like a 31" x 30" in pants and a bigger M size in t-shirts and shirts. I kind of feel a little guilty for spending the money, but I need to get over it. I needed to look appropriate and feel good in my clothes.

I turned the old pants into shorts and I will sell on eBay some pants I bought last winter that they are too big for me now.

- My Macbook Air from late 2010 broke down, it seems it might be the logic board or the HD. A friend of mine is going to fix it on a budget when we go to Spain in summer. I am also updating the software of an old Macbook 15" from 2009 that Chica had and sell it on eBay for like $200-250. I am actually considering selling both laptops for $600 and getting a 2015-16 Macbook 12" 250GB SSD with 8GB Ram for about $650.

Roommate/Living situation:
- We informed him he needs to leave by June 30th. I really hope he leaves by the end of May. We had a roommate/airbnb for the past 2 years and we are ready to reconquer our house and enjoy our privacy. It really worked out well since we were able to live pretty much for free if we count the principal as savings.

- I am part of the HOA Board since March. Now I get to know where our money goes and suggest projects/improvements we want to do in the building or community. I will revamp the landscaping before we sell...everything is part of the plan :lol:

Personal:
- We are planning in starting a family soon. Chica is visiting her doctor next month to take her off the pill. Exciting times. Today is our 5 year wedding anniversary by the way.

- We are also forecasting some nice weather in Chicago (it was about freaking time), I am also making new friends and I am organizing soccer games on Saturday mornings. I want to make the best of the two years I have left in Chicago.

- Part of the decision of buying pants, etc..was because I feel I need to take a better care of myself, feel better and look better. Perhaps, more confident of myself (I feel I was lacking a litte bit these past months). I also reorganized my wardrobe, closet and gym bag to have everything I need (still quite minimalist).

- I want to take a good shot of myself for Linkedin, casual but formal. I was thinking of a couple of good pics with suit and white shirt. I also want to revise my resume and Linkedin page.

- I finished the most important part of the TEFL certificate. I still feel I need to study on the side to feel confident when teaching other people.

Finances:
- We are continuing putting Chica's salary ($5,200) on the side as savings. Thinking in saving 20K in cash, we are half way.
- Continue investing $880/month in Betterment.
- I started to read the NYT everyday. One of my neighbors has the subscription but never picks the newspapers up (they pilled in the front door for a week), so.. thank youuu neighbor.

That's all for now, our monthly meeting is next week!
Last edited by Frugalchicos on Fri Apr 27, 2018 1:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Jason
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Re: Let's go Back Home - Frugal chicos journal

Post by Jason » Fri Apr 27, 2018 7:33 am

Frugalchicos wrote:
Thu Apr 26, 2018 10:48 am

- We are planning in starting a family soon. Chica is visiting her doctor next month to take her off the pill. Exciting times. Today is our 5 year wedding anniversary by the way.
Congrats x 2

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Frugalchicos
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Re: Let's go Back Home - Frugal chicos journal

Post by Frugalchicos » Fri Apr 27, 2018 10:28 am

@Jason

Thank you buddy!!

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Frugalchicos
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Re: Let's go Back Home - Frugal chicos journal

Post by Frugalchicos » Sat May 05, 2018 11:29 am

Alright guys, time for our monthly update

APRIL INCOME – $10,214.45
Chico’s Salary – $4,163.45
Chica’s Salary – $5,226
Roommate Rent – $825


APRIL EXPENSES – $5,287.81 ($4,136.57 if subtracting principal payment)
Mortgage: $1,978.60 (note: $1,151.24 went to principal, counting that as a savings)
HOA: $247.83
Car Insurance: $65.49
Gas (Car): $117.84
Groceries: $533.81 ‘bought more protein, we still have some in the freezer´
Cellphones: $21.74 (note: Chica’s work pays her cellphone bill, this is just Chico’s phone plan with Lycamobile)
Internet: $56.30
Gas (House): $83 ‘ still winter in Chicago´
Electricity: $43.36
Chica’s Gym: $39.99
Chico’s Gym: $29.99
Misc./Entertainment: $2,069.86 (we bought plenty of clothes, I totally renovated my wardrove. It was very well needed, I basicslly didn´t buy any clothes in the past five years). Our laptop also broke down, might be the logic board or the ram, that it is welded to the logicboard... I will give more details of the $550 laptop I bought later.

Even with the huge miscellanious expenses, we manage to save 59.50% of our take home salary. Note: this doesn’t include any 401K contributions or retirement plans.

CURRENT ASSETS: $277,650.35 ($8,561.25 increase over last month)
Cash savings: $10,345.85
Investments: $111,695
Chico’s Retirement: $9,253
Chica’s 401K: $44,075.38
Home Equity: $102,281.12 (not counting appreciation)
Image
Last edited by Frugalchicos on Thu May 10, 2018 1:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Seppia
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Re: Let's go Back Home - Frugal chicos journal

Post by Seppia » Sat May 05, 2018 12:55 pm

Frugalchicos wrote:
Thu Apr 26, 2018 10:48 am
- We are planning in starting a family soon. Chica is visiting her doctor next month to take her off the pill. Exciting times. Today is our 5 year wedding anniversary by the way.
Felicidades!

Os deseo mucha suerte en todo, ojalá podéis regresar pronto a los país bascos

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Frugalchicos
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Re: Let's go Back Home - Frugal chicos journal

Post by Frugalchicos » Sat May 05, 2018 3:37 pm

This month we gave ourselves a break and bought all the stuff we needed and a little bit more. I think we got to the point where we know we are doing great and sometimes we can use the money to buy stuff we want. An example is good quality clothes )Gap and J Crew factory is the most expensive I buy, same for Chica).

Unexpected things and expenses happen in life. It was sad to see our Macbook Air from Late 2010 dying. It was great to us for the past 6 years. I bought it second hand for $600. I will still try to fix it for cheap with a second hand logic board from eBay and sell it for $280 or so. I am also fixing an old Macbook from 2009 and will sell it for like $150.

I bought a Macbook Pro from mid 2012 because of the fact that I can actually change everything myself with the exception of the Processor )it has an i5 Intel 2.5ghz). I bought a 850 Evo Samsung 500gb SSD, a new battery and 16gb of Crucial Ram, everything for $550 counting the laptop which is in immaculate condition. It will have pretty competitive specs and much more than what I actually need. I will see how I feel about it and if I don´t like it, think it is too heavy and big, I will sell it for profit on eBay once I fix the old Macbook Air.

Other projects/plans we have for next month and beyond:
+Growing our cash savings up to $20K
+Get to 300K by July. We want to have 400K by the time our kid is born by next spring/summer.
+Have our roommate moving out by the end of May or June. Once he moves, we will clean everything, couch, pillows, everything. I feel I need to do this to eliminate his smell out of everything (smells like a teenager full of hormones, gross. And of course, never opens the stupid window of his bedroom) and feel our house is ours again.
+We definitely want to cut back on our expenses. I feel we had adjusted our life a little bit to the salary bump and our saving % doesn´t pass the 65%.
+We have some trips planned that are already paid for with -airbnb credit and Southwest points. We just need to be more conscious with our food choices when exploring around.
+I have a couple of good friends here in Chicago, I plan to invest in those relationships and not invest so much time in meeting new people. However, nice and frugal/conscious people with similar interests than ours are always welcome in our lives.
Last edited by Frugalchicos on Fri May 11, 2018 11:30 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Frugalchicos
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Re: Let's go Back Home - Frugal chicos journal

Post by Frugalchicos » Sat May 05, 2018 4:12 pm

@Seppia

Gracias! It is happening bro. Spring 2020!!

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Frugalchicos
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Re: Let's go Back Home - Frugal chicos journal

Post by Frugalchicos » Sun May 13, 2018 6:46 pm

Very productive weekend!

I finally got the laptop I bought on eBay. I spent Friday night cleaning and upgrading it. It is flying and looks like new. I just have to fix the hinges of the screen, it feels a little wobbly. I call him Brutus, he is a little fat and heavy, but powerful as a beast :lol: I intend to edit all the pictures we have, take more pics and keep good memories of our time in the US (like pictures of our wedding, a picture of me in front of our house when we bought it, etc.)

I also fixed Chica's old 2008 Macbook Pro and put it on sale for $185, I am also selling the Macbook Air superdrive for $40.

I got the synthetic oil and filter changed right by home for $77. I think it is a great deal, last year I bought everything myself for like $40 and my Mexican friends changed it for $15.

Got my resume updated and will have to wait for next weekend to take a good shot for Linkedin picture. It was just too dark in Chitown. I think I have pretty damn good experience :lol:

We cooked up a storm this morning. Paella, Chicken Tikka Masala, Veggie Stir fry and Banana Bread. Sundays are prep day. We cook for the entire week and do a meal plan. I felt a little sad this morning seeing some pictures of my family and thinking of all the good times I am missing out on. However, I felt very blessed to be on the same page as Chica, sharing the same goal (mission) and working towards it together. Definitely, being frugal and extremely organized in our lives and finances make the difference.

Alright some pics of the laptop project and the delicious food we cooked! :D

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Last edited by Frugalchicos on Mon May 14, 2018 7:24 am, edited 2 times in total.

2Birds1Stone
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Re: Let's go Back Home - Frugal chicos journal

Post by 2Birds1Stone » Sun May 13, 2018 7:36 pm

Our timeline, FI, ERE, points are almost exactly the same. I'm targeting April 1 2020, and will likely move back to Poland (where my family is originally from). It's awesome to catch up on your journal and commiserate as we get antsy to pull the plug =)

2Birds1Stone
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Re: Let's go Back Home - Frugal chicos journal

Post by 2Birds1Stone » Sun May 13, 2018 7:39 pm

And dude, that Aldi shopping list from March is a very typical haul for us too! I actually posted a copy of a recent receipt on MMM forums lol.

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Frugalchicos
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Re: Let's go Back Home - Frugal chicos journal

Post by Frugalchicos » Sun May 13, 2018 9:20 pm

@ 2Birds1Stone

Hey man, yes 2020 is close but far at the same time...It depends on the day. Aldi rocks, I plan to do groceries there and in Lidl when I move back to Europe. Lol.

Good luck moving to Poland!!

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bryan
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Re: Let's go Back Home - Frugal chicos journal

Post by bryan » Tue May 15, 2018 4:22 pm

Digging the pics! :D

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Frugalchicos
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Re: Let's go Back Home - Frugal chicos journal

Post by Frugalchicos » Wed May 16, 2018 9:52 am

@Bryan

Thank you for encouraging buddy :)

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