_bb_ Journal

Where are you and where are you going?
_bb_
Posts: 56
Joined: Thu Nov 22, 2018 7:58 pm
Location: Canada

Re: _bb_ Journal

Post by _bb_ »

February & March Finance Report

FEB S.R. .-> 64.44%
MAR S.R. -> 56.85%
2020 S.R. -> 67.12%
SWR . . . . -> 37.96%
CYoLEC*. -> 2.70

A personal lack of discipline prevented me from calculating these numbers sooner. The only reason the savings rates remained somewhat high was they were high income months as well. There is still a lot of room for improvement on the variable expense side - such as ordering food - that can be addressed. I am kicking myself because had I been diligently tracking these expenses I would have curbed the spending earlier.

Moving forward, I plan on trying to track expenses each week and report the monthly numbers. I feel like this will be sustainable and useful to remain personally accountable.

I've also started tracking my savings withdrawal rate and my current years of living expense. Something that I had not previously included in my spreadsheet, but thanks to reading the journals of others I finally internalized the importance of these numbers. I am tracking the SWR on a TTM average and the CYOLE is calculated at the end of each month.

*Current Years of Living Expenses covered

_bb_
Posts: 56
Joined: Thu Nov 22, 2018 7:58 pm
Location: Canada

Re: _bb_ Journal

Post by _bb_ »

April

APR S.R. -> 55.27%
2020 S.R. -> 65.09%
SWR. . . . -> 35.58%
CYoLEC . -> 2.91

_bb_
Posts: 56
Joined: Thu Nov 22, 2018 7:58 pm
Location: Canada

Re: _bb_ Journal

Post by _bb_ »

Something interesting happened today at work, it was a comment made by my manager today during a team meeting. The comment was meant to be motivational, however I almost threw up. The comment was something along the lines of, "You should be spending more time outside of working hours that can help you make more money during working hours. You don't need your hobbies, you should be focused on making money at this job."

It was truly the first time that I've past the point of no return. The comment was made with good intention and others on my team responded with they typical rahrah! go gett'em attitude. I finally understood what it is I am aiming for exactly, I am prioritizing time over money. Money is simply a tool, but it is not the only tool available. Spending my time outside of work improving and developing skills to provide monetary gain is not a motivator, the motivation is learning simply because it is interesting and useful TO ME!

For the time being I still need to blend in and play the role of a dependable employee because I am still very much dependent on this stream of income. However, I am looking forward to the day that I can decouple completely from wage income and more freely follow my curiosity. For now, I think of myself as a deep cover operative, playing a role until one day I can retire from the field.

ertyu
Posts: 1822
Joined: Sun Nov 13, 2016 2:31 am

Re: _bb_ Journal

Post by ertyu »

_bb_ wrote:
Thu May 21, 2020 6:51 pm
The comment was made with good intention
No. The comment was made to guilt trip people and make them feel like they aren't doing their best and aren't putting in their all. "You should focus your time outside work on trying to find ways to make more money at work" -- ok, but who are you making that money for? Part of it is for yourself, yes. But your employer takes a cut.

You rightly sensed that this is psychological manipulation, and that your employer cares very little about whether your life is full or your soul is whole. The rah-rah people probably sensed it too, but also knew they were supposed to perform enthusiasm if they are to fit in with corporate culture. Insightful of you to see through the manipulation. Use it to fuel your determination to purchase your freedom.

_bb_
Posts: 56
Joined: Thu Nov 22, 2018 7:58 pm
Location: Canada

Re: _bb_ Journal

Post by _bb_ »

May

May S.R. -> 67.39%
2020 S.R. -> 65.57%
SWR. . . . -> 34.46%
CYoLEC . -> 2.99

_bb_
Posts: 56
Joined: Thu Nov 22, 2018 7:58 pm
Location: Canada

Re: _bb_ Journal

Post by _bb_ »

@ertyu, you're right. I'm still within the metaphorical cave, but I've seen the light!

Ironically, the day after I wrote the post above I was given a new position. One with (allegedly) more responsibility and less oversight. I'm now more in the background which suits me better than what I had been doing. I took it because I still must play the corporate game. I think my attitude of indifference was a contributing factor in their decision.

We've been designing tiny house layouts and looking at some of the numbers. The budget and the cash flows are speculative, but a rough estimate cash outflows would be cut by 50% and the capital spent would be recouped by the end of year 2. The rough idea is to buy a plot of land and live in the TH while we save for and build out our compound.

Conservatively, we can do all of this starting spring of next year without any debt. Having read a bunch of posts on the forum regarding the pros and cons of debt, I will say my personal stance is: never again.

_bb_
Posts: 56
Joined: Thu Nov 22, 2018 7:58 pm
Location: Canada

Re: _bb_ Journal

Post by _bb_ »

June

June S.R. -> 37.03%
2020 S.R. -> 61.82%
SWR. . . . -> 35.56%
CYoLEC . -> 2.90

_bb_
Posts: 56
Joined: Thu Nov 22, 2018 7:58 pm
Location: Canada

Re: _bb_ Journal

Post by _bb_ »

High spend month due to an unexpected trip to the dentist. I'll be partially reimbursed in July, but I wanted to report the numbers for future "forecasting". We also planned a small get-away in a cabin towards the end of the month for July.

Goals for July:
- Read 3 books
- Programming practice 20 cumulative hours for the month
- Run a 6 minute mile
- Draw a tree in the park

_bb_
Posts: 56
Joined: Thu Nov 22, 2018 7:58 pm
Location: Canada

Re: _bb_ Journal

Post by _bb_ »

July

July S.R. -> 40.88%
2020 S.R. -> 59.47%
SWR. . . . -> 35.66%
CYoLEC . -> 2.88

Not a super month financially, however a fun month personally. We were able to get out of the city and spent an extended weekend in a small off-grid cabin in the woods. There was a covered porch with a hammock - so simple and so enjoyable. I think it would be fun to try that lifestyle for a while and see what happens, DW has other thoughts...

I was able to read Shantaram, What I learned losing a million dollars, and Brave New World. All were/are great reads in their own unique way. This month I will stick with two non-fiction and one fiction. I've replaced my internet browsing time with reading time and the fiction is one source of entertainment.

I'm slowing down on the programming - I have hit a wall and didn't have time to work through my issue with whats been going on at work (screen fatigue by the end of the day, maybe I'll try switching to practicing in the morning). So that was a bust.

Physically, I need to renew my commitment to remaining consistent. I did not run a timed mile in July...

Goals for August:
- Read three books (2 non-fiction, 1 fiction)
- Programming practice 20 cumulative hours
- Minimum of 25 pushups, pullups, squats, and lunges per day

Frita
Posts: 702
Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2018 8:43 pm

Re: _bb_ Journal

Post by Frita »

_bb_ wrote:
Sun Aug 02, 2020 4:11 pm
July

July S.R. -> 40.88%
2020 S.R. -> 59.47%
SWR. . . . -> 35.66%
CYoLEC . -> 2.88
We were able to get out of the city and spent an extended weekend in a small off-grid cabin in the woods. There was a covered porch with a hammock - so simple and so enjoyable.
This sounds lovely. Perhaps with repeated practice your spouse will come around. We come from hammock culture. People hang them at lunch break from work, at the park in the evenings and on the weekends. We have a majestic, 100+ year old cedar tree in our small backyard from which we hang hammocks. It is wonderfully relaxing and grounding to swing in the breeze.

_bb_
Posts: 56
Joined: Thu Nov 22, 2018 7:58 pm
Location: Canada

Re: _bb_ Journal

Post by _bb_ »

August

August S.R. -> -107.15%
2020 S.R. -> 36.22%
SWR. . . . -> 43.67%
CYoLEC . -> 2.65

Weird month in terms of reporting numbers because DW had to pay her tuition in August, she's paid back this month as the school covers her fees. Seeing as how we have at least 4 more years until she wraps up this process I'll keep reporting raw numbers in and out. No need to game my own records.

Over the past few weeks I've read through a lot of journals, and upon reflecting I'm not taking the E in ERE very seriously. There are so many amazing stories of people finding creative solutions to problems like housing, or discretionary spending, etc. For the most part our spending is under control, but the savings rates are not anything crazy - they don't meet the criteria for Extreme or Early.

Our biggest issue is rent. We're looking into different options for the living situation. I'm very averse to obtaining a mortgage, but lately I've really been considering the duplex scenario where we live in one half and a tenant covers (most of) the mortgage payment. That would drastically increase our savings rate, but it would also tie us down. I guess at this point, I'm still really like the ability that I could throw all of my valuables into a car and move on. That option kind of goes away when you have a mortgage. At least it goes away from my perspective...

Now on to some of the more fun things. Work was crazy busy, but at the end of the month we did go on a quick trip out of the city. We went to the Bruce Peninsula, google images you won't believe you're looking at Canadian waters. It was really refreshing to get out of the city, the crispness of the air, the colors of the water, and the night sky made the trip for me.

For this month I am performing a simple experiment. I am only using cash - I have no other option in my wallet, I removed the credit and debit cards. This greatly slows down the transaction speed and makes me think about what I'm buying. So far so good. Because I have restricted access to my credit card that also means that I can't order take out using a phone app. I'd noticed that expense had been creeping up, so until I learn moderation, I'll have to go without.

In August I signed up for a Python programming class, mostly for the structure - I found that while self-pacing I always let my professional work take priority over my personal interest*. Now I have to show up (on Zoom) to a class with a scheduled time. I'm still doing a lot on my own, but the structure is giving me some nice anchor points during the week. I did find that I had hit a bit of a plateau in my progress so talking through problems and approaches with others has been really, really fun! Right now I'm taking this purely our of personal interest, we'll see where it goes - maybe I'll have an idea for a nice little side business. My other aim was to build a solid foundation so I could follow my interests in the future.

On the physical fitness front, I'm doing a bit of a reset. I am in the poorest shape of my adult life and I need to re-introduce the workout habit into my system. For the past week I have been doing 5 pushups, 5 pull-ups, and 5 squats right after I wake up and drink a glass of water. It is such a low effort hurdle that I have no excuse to not do it. I'll add a few more movements still at 5 reps, then I'll add more reps. I'm really bummed that I let myself get out of a rhythm, but I'll find my groove soon.

Projects for September:
- Re-evaluate web of goals
- Build a workbench out of salvaged / scrap wood
- Learn two new recipes
- Eat only home-cooked meals

_bb_
Posts: 56
Joined: Thu Nov 22, 2018 7:58 pm
Location: Canada

Re: _bb_ Journal

Post by _bb_ »

September

September S.R. -> 82.41%
2020 S.R. -> 41.23%
SWR. . . . -> 41.49%
CYoLEC . -> 2.82

October

October S.R. -> 46.99%
2020 S.R. -> 51.89%
SWR. . . . -> 39.96%
CYoLEC . -> 2.92

_bb_
Posts: 56
Joined: Thu Nov 22, 2018 7:58 pm
Location: Canada

Re: _bb_ Journal

Post by _bb_ »

November

November S.R. -> 51.23%
2020 S.R. -> 51.85%
SWR. . . . -> 38.48%
CYoLEC . -> 3.04

_bb_
Posts: 56
Joined: Thu Nov 22, 2018 7:58 pm
Location: Canada

Re: _bb_ Journal

Post by _bb_ »

December

December S.R. -> 74.38%
2020 S.R. -> 55.25%
SWR. . . . -> 37.81%
CYoLEC . -> 3.06

_bb_
Posts: 56
Joined: Thu Nov 22, 2018 7:58 pm
Location: Canada

Re: _bb_ Journal

Post by _bb_ »

2020 Financial Numbers

2020 S.R. -> 55.25%

Net worth -> +80% YoY

I'm very grateful for how we have fared throughout the various stages of lock down. Financially, I'm pretty happy with what we accomplished this year - though there is a lot of work that can still be done to improve the savings rate.

For example, our Restaurants/Entertainment category (which includes eating out, ordering in, alcohol, cafes, etc) accounted for just over 11% of our yearly spending. For comparison our grocery bill was about 13% of the yearly spend. It is kind of embarrassing because most of that 11% is plain laziness. To address this we will be prioritizing cooking days so we can have food readily available and it is going to be an activity that we do together.

In the next couple of days I'll probably think of more to reflect upon. For now I have a list of priorities to focus on this upcoming year.

2021 Priorities

Frugality:
-> Reduce, Reuse, Recycle: generate as little waste as possible
-> Buy nothing new: thrift, barter, dumpster dive
-> Cooking Days: Sunday & Wednesday, bulk cooking days

Creativity
-> Daily yoga & meditation practice
-> Write in journal daily
-> Drawing and design, Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays
-> Wood working projects

Financial:
-> 70% + savings rate
-> Deploy a small portion of my capital to begin building a portfolio (primary focus is to determine how well I do psychologically)

_bb_
Posts: 56
Joined: Thu Nov 22, 2018 7:58 pm
Location: Canada

Re: _bb_ Journal

Post by _bb_ »

A couple of recipes that I've been using lately:

Stuffed Peppers: https://minimalistbaker.com/spanish-qui ... d-peppers/
Vegetable shepard's pie: https://minimalistbaker.com/1-hour-vegan-shepherds-pie/

Stuffed Mushrooms:
-> Portobello mushrooms
-> sauted kale & shallots
-> marinara sauce
-> goat cheese
-> bread crumbs
-> salt & pepper to taste

Oven @450F
Mushrooms flipped upside down, placed on a rack.
20-25 mins
Take out of oven
Slather on a layer of marinara, add the kale and shallots, layer of goat cheese, top with bread crumbs.
Oven @425F
10-15 mins

_bb_
Posts: 56
Joined: Thu Nov 22, 2018 7:58 pm
Location: Canada

Re: _bb_ Journal

Post by _bb_ »

January 2021

January S.R. -> 90.33%
2021 S.R. . . -> 90.33%
TTM Exp. . . .-> -0.44%
NW. . . . . . . . -> +17.58%

Brain Dump:

Frugality:
-> I have assumed control of food acquisition and meal prep. The criteria is simple, DW is a vegetarian so for simplicity I eat vegetarian as well. I enjoy cooking and I like experimenting with different flavors. I also enjoy not being responsible for the dishes!
-> I am experimenting with several different grocery stores at the moment - one is a co-op, which I am doing a trial membership of and the other is a regular grocer that offers free delivery by bicycle. Both focus on reducing waste generation and providing local as much as possible. We've been able to bring our containers and stock up on the staples. Prices for the bulk items beat the chain supermarkets, the produce is slightly more expensive. I think I will officially join the co-op as a way to get involved in the community.
-> I believe I saw this posted on the forum, this is on my reading list: The Hundred Mile Diet
-> The meal prep is working well, we drastically cut down on the 'ordering food because we are bored and/or lazy'.
-> I was able to give away an ikea desk using Freecycle. I've replaced the old desk with a desk of my creation.
-> I have a pile of things that I will continue to post on Freecycle and similar places until they are gone, freeing up space in our apartment.
-> Someone in our apartment building was trying to sell two old pallets for $50 each (crazy). Two weeks later while I was taking out the trash, I found them next to the dumpster. So now they are on my balcony and eventually I will disassemble them. Thinking of creating a planter box, seems like an easy enough project.

Creativity:
-> I built a desk! Really I screwed together some boards and made a desk top that functions as a desk and a work bench. Its not pretty, but could be made pretty in time.
-> I have an ever expanding list of projects that I want to tackle: building my own speakers, making an audio amplifier, building a computer case that integrates two old monitors and have everything run off of 12v, assemble my own batteries, the list goes on...
-> I have some ambitious programs that I would like to write to track finances, watch lists, live portfolio, that I have slowly been chipping away at. It is really fun to think about the design of the program, less fun writing the code, and even less fun trying to figure out why it isn't working, but all in all it is still net-positive fun!

Physically:
-> I can safely say, I am in the worst shape of my life. I have become incredibly sedentary and I am basically starting from scratch. I have not been keeping up with yoga practice and I've not done any training. I know what I need to do, I just have not been doing it.

Financially:
-> High savings rate this month due to high income
-> Decided to avoid doing any capital deployment at the moment, happy to watch from the sidelines. I'm still in the accumulation phase, still prioritizing learning.

Work has been busy, January is always a hectic month for the company, but the work comes in waves and I've been able to delegate a lot of work. It is interesting, I am not an official manager, but I am expected to act as such - I've tried to make the team as efficient as possible and we are operating with as few meetings as possible leaving me with free time during the day to work on other projects. Some of these projects are still work related, though in other areas of the business I am curious about and wanted to get involved in, others are personal.

_bb_
Posts: 56
Joined: Thu Nov 22, 2018 7:58 pm
Location: Canada

Re: _bb_ Journal

Post by _bb_ »

Just completed a 24 hr electronics and internet 'fast'. Here are a few things I noticed:
-> I got bored; then I found something to do (mostly reading, some drawing)
-> I had the best night sleep I've had in a very long time. Didn't wake up once during the night. Woke up at 5:30 am without an alarm fully alert.
-> My mind wandered, more than usual, and I came up with a few new ideas for projects.

I also had this thought:

My mind wanders, a lot. Usually during the day my physical being is on autopilot completing a task and my mental being is elsewhere daydreaming. I have found that it has been happening more often and I suspect it has to do with extended isolation/quarantine.

However, there are tasks, small daily tasks, that allow me to be present. Tasks like writing in a journal, trying to accurately articulate a thought or an idea. Yoga is another, I find helpful.

Now I have a new task, my wife recently gifted me a straight razor. And so for the past month about every other day I lather up my face with shaving cream, I crane my neck to the side and pull the skin tight. Then with a steady(ish) hand I hold a naked razor up to my throat and ever so gently shave away the stubble. It is one of my new favorite rituals - there is nothing like the threat of a self-induced injury to keep you focused.

It's hard not to laugh at the absurdity of it :lol:

_bb_
Posts: 56
Joined: Thu Nov 22, 2018 7:58 pm
Location: Canada

Re: _bb_ Journal

Post by _bb_ »

February 2021

February S.R. -> 44.33%
2021 S.R. . . -> 83.28%
TTM Exp. . . .-> +1.30%
NW. . . . . . . . -> +0.25%

Frugality:
-> My 'frugality' energy was directed towards cooking this month. Experimenting with spice combinations, nothing out of the ordinary, focusing on honing my skill 'free-styling' meals based on what is in the pantry.

Creativity:
-> Designing using CAD software. Learning the basics so far, looking to become competent enough to make accurate designs for future projects to help with material selection & quantity.

Physical:
-> X-country skiing (could be something I get way more into, very fun)

Financial:
-> Taxes...

_bb_
Posts: 56
Joined: Thu Nov 22, 2018 7:58 pm
Location: Canada

Re: _bb_ Journal

Post by _bb_ »

March 2021

March S.R. -> 57.96%
2021 S.R. . . -> 77.41%
TTM Exp. . . .-> -2.57%
NW. . . . . . . . -> +5.14%

Post Reply