Home > Archive: December, 2020

Archive for December, 2020

Happy New Years Eve!

December 31st, 2020 at 04:35 pm

I won't be spending anything today, so I did my December recap, and my 2020 recap.


Gifts/Charity: $1068

Housing: $795

Vet/Pet Supplies: $310

Utilities: $178

Groceries: $168

Medical/Health: $106

Phone: $51

Laundry: $24

Furn/Equip/Decor: $19

Eating Out/Takeout: $16

Entertainment: $12

Grand Total: $2763



Housing: $9708

Home Repair/Maintenance: $5071

Gifts/Charity: $3893

Car Repair/Maintenance: $2181

Utilities: $2148

Medical/Health: $1842

Groceries: $1593

Furn/Equip/Decor: $1337

Vet/Pet Supplies: $1099

Taxes: $909

Insurance: $869

Phone: $612

Fees/Services: $560

Eating Out/Takeout: $537

Entertainment: $283

Household Supplies: $273

Laundry: $208

Clothing: $204

Gas: $202

Personal: $163

Fares/Parking: $3

Grand Total: $33,695

You want to hear something funny?  My grand total last year was $33,696!  Of course there was a big difference in the categories.  This year I spent a lot more on home repair, gifts (that was thrown off by donating my $1200 stimulus check to DIL's business), and car repair/maintenance.  I spent less on furnishings/equipment/decor, insurance (I think that is just a timing thing), eating out, clothing, gas, vacations and personal.

My net worth went up by almost $5K.  Another surprise.

Update:  I forgot to check my TIAA investments.  My net worth actually went up by $5700!

Fluids and Groceries

December 29th, 2020 at 06:38 pm

This morning I picked up a new bag of fluids at the vet -- $12.  Since I was out, I stopped at Aldi on the way home and picked up some items that will help me repurpose my Christmas leftovers.  I got a few staples as well.  The bill was $43.

A winter storm is predicted for this afternoon, so I wanted to get the grocery shopping squared away, in case I am shut in for a few days.

Variables are at 95%.

This and That

December 28th, 2020 at 10:06 pm

I got a $250 cash Christmas gift this year, so this morning I deposited $200 into savings and converted $40 into quarters.  That gives me a $10 bill to walk around with.

I returned the slippers that did not fit right.  No hassle at all at UPS.

This afternoon I made cabbage potato soup.  I was planning on making potato soup, but since I had a half a head of cabbage to use up, I looked up the recipe in Fanny Farmer.  It was quite simple.  I didn't have bacon bits to add, but I think it will be fine.  Vegetarian soup!

I spent another $12 on another late Christmas gift.  Really, I've got to be better about this next year!

Iggy was a perfect gentleman while getting his fluids today.  I finished the bag, so tomorrow I need to get in touch with the vet.


December 27th, 2020 at 07:59 pm

A few expenditures to report -- I subscribed to PBS Masterpiece for $6 -- that will not come out of my pocket until January, however.  I also spent $12 on a Christmas gift for a friend -- a little late, but I didn't expect that she would send me a gift.  It was a surprise that arrived on Christmas Eve.  Variables are now at 87%, with only four more days in the month.

Tomorrow I'm going to return a gift I received to Amazon.  It was a pair of slippers that seemed very comfortable at first, but after wearing them for a while I realized that they chafed the back of my ankle.  When I am reimbursed, I will pick out a pair of slide-on slippers that won't touch my ankle.

I brought home a bag of leftovers from the Christmas meal, and I've been working on ways to use them up.  I made an omelet today.  I think I'll be making potato soup tomorrow!


December 27th, 2020 at 12:15 am

I'm not really sick, but I started having digestive issues before Christmas.  Then, with the stress and excitement, and the rich food, it got worse.  I had a very uncomfortable night last night.  I didn't sleep much.

This morning I took Miralax and it helped, but I'm not sure I'm done yet.  We'll see how tonight goes.

Christmas itself was lovely.  I celebrated with my pod -- my kids, grandkids and ex and wife.  That's a group of seven.  It was against guidelines, but all of us are very careful to avoid any situation that might bring about an infection.  Now I am going back in my cave!

I received many nice gifts.  I was indeed very blessed.

Now I am looking forward to getting back in my routine, and looking forward to a new year that will bring hope instead of stress!

Happy holidays, everyone!


December 22nd, 2020 at 03:15 pm

I picked up groceries at Aldi yesterday, fulfilling the second Instacart order.  It wasn't quite as bad as the first time I picked up at Aldi, but was still glitchy.  The first time, I followed instructions on the app to let them know I was on the way.  The shopper seemed to assume I was there, and phoned to ask where I was.  I told her I was on the way and would be there in a few minutes.  By the time I got there, she had disappeared.  I waited a long time and finally had to go in to find out what was happening.

This time, I decided I would skip the "on the way" notification and just click on "I am here" once I was parked.  Well, that didn't work either.  No one seemed to know I was there.  Once again, I had to go inside and find someone.  Yet I saw someone else drive up and get served while I was waiting.

I also did not get one of my items, but Instacart quickly gave me a refund for that.

My total bill was $43 -- less than estimated.

Afterwards, I went to Steak N Shake's drive-thru and got a burger for $6.

Variables are still at 85% because of the adjustments to the grocery expense.

Today is going to be a stay-at-home day.

Iggy is doing well on the fluids.  He ate well this morning.


Instacart Order

December 18th, 2020 at 05:03 pm

I have made two Instacart orders in the last few days, totalling $100.  One is from the local Jewel store -- those items will be delivered this afternoon.  The other is a pickup from Aldi, which I will make on Monday.  I chose not to go inside either store.  With the virus worse than it's ever been, it's just not worth it.

I have promised a casserole and a pie for Christmas dinner, and these orders will insure I have all the ingredients, as well as enough basics to get through the rest of the month.

Variables, with the estimated grocery cost (it won't be final till the orders have been filled) are at 85%.  That means it will be a little tight the rest of the month.

I hope the stimulus package is finally approved; I could really use the potential $600, especially with insurance and tax payments coming up in the New Year.

As for Iggy, my first attempt to give him fluids was a disaster.  I called on my grandson and then my son to help, and we all got wetter than Iggy did.  The next day I tried again, just myself, and I was mostly successful.  He got away before I quite finished, but at least he got some fluids in him.  Next attempt will be tomorrow.  Hope it will be even better.

Pay Day

December 16th, 2020 at 04:22 pm

I did my pay day bills, with one extra -- I donated $225 to each grandchild's college fund, for a total of $900.

Iggy continues to seem better.  I will give him fluids on my own today for the first time -- I hope he will comply.  He can be pretty uncooperative!

Pay Day Tomorrow

December 15th, 2020 at 03:35 pm

I'm looking forward to pay day this month, just to get things squared away.  Most of all, I want to take care of my annual donation to college funds for the grandchildren.  Last year I couldn't do it before Christmas, and that was kind of a bummer.

After Christmas, I have a semi-annual payment for auto insurance in January, and semi-annual property tax in February.  So I don't get a breather for a while.  I am frustrated that I can't work on any home projects, but I know I have to be patient.  That day will come.

My BIL is organizing the vaccine program in his hospital (he's a pharmacist).  They have the freezers now.  It's very exciting.

Iggy update:  My vet taught me how to give him fluids at home.  My first attempt on my own will come tomorrow.  He has responded very well to the fluids.  He is eating, and this morning there were normal poops in the litter box!  Never thought I'd be so excited to see that!  And apparently he did that without pain, because I didn't hear anything in the night.  He is alert and seems to be happy again.  Even his coat feels better.  I never realized just how dehydrated he was, or what a difference hydrating can make.  Encourages me to drink water more myself.....

Christmas Ornaments

December 13th, 2020 at 05:00 pm

I ordered three Christmas ornaments yesterday, spending $19.   Last year, GS2 noticed that I had a violin and a trombone on my tree, but no piano.  I was also lacking a saxophone, which DS1 played.  So I remedied that.  For good measure, I also ordered a flute, which I played.  As for the violin and trombone, those are the instruments of GS1 and DS2.

Iggy did not have a good day yesterday.  He ate, but then he threw it up and then had diarrhea, in and out of the litter box.  He was wailing in pain.  Today is Sunday, so nothing I can do.  He seems quiet and kind of out of it.  He ate a little -- no digestive upset yet.  Yesterday he got into his carrier -- which he hates -- by himself!  I don't know if he wanted a trip to the vet or if he just liked the close quarters.  

The blood test showed that his kidney disease is worsening, but not alarming to the vet.  I don't know what to do.


December 12th, 2020 at 01:00 pm

Iggy has stopped eating.  I took him back to the vet yesterday and they gave him a geriatric workup and drew blood for tests.  I will call this morning to find out what the blood tests reveal.  They also gave me an appetite stimulant and gave him fluids again.  The total cost was $211.  Variables are at 67%.

I know he is probably coming to the end of days, but I want to know what is wrong, as does the vet.  Other than not eating, he seems to be comfortable.

Assessment Fees

December 11th, 2020 at 02:53 pm

As a condo owner, I pay assessment fees each month.  I just got notice that my fees are going up by 5%, which will make them $445.00.  This will begin just before Christmas.  I've made the adjustment in my budget.  Add to this the rise in laundry cost -- from $1.50 per load to $2 -- it is clear the HOA is feeling the pinch.  These are small amounts but I will have to make up the difference somewhere.


December 8th, 2020 at 04:45 pm

I am reading a series right now, Ann Cleeves' Shetland series.  The next book in line is not available at my library.  I looked it up on Amazon, and it was available in the Kindle edition, and with credits that I already had it was only $2.98.  So I ordered it, and it's already on my phone.  A little Christmas present for me.

Variables are at 35%.

My BFF, with whom I usually exchange modest Christmas gifts, suggested that we just exchange love this year.  All right by me!  The only gift left is a maybe for my friend who is also my former boss.  

An Amazon Christmas

December 7th, 2020 at 01:12 pm

I ordered a gift from Amazon for a friend today - $18.  I have one more gift to buy, for another friend.  I have asked her if she has an Amazon list.  There is another friend who usually sends a gift.  I always wait for it to come before I reciprocate, because I just wouldn't mind if that exchange died out.

All my other gifts have come from Amazon.  I have not ventured out to shop at all.  Since my son is an employee of Amazon, I don't feel at all bad about using the company to the max.  I do wish I could support local businesses, but I feel I have to stay inside as much as possible.

DIL has suggested some Christmas plans -- a movie on Christmas Eve at her house, gift opening at her house on Christmas morning, with open windows and masks., dinner at the home of DE (dear ex).  I am in, and I will be taking all the precautions I can.  I offered to make Bubble & Squeak for dinner and a rum cream pie for dessert.  I'll have to engineer a curbside pickup for ingredients.

I haven't put up the tree yet.  Maybe today.

Christmas gifts, etc.

December 5th, 2020 at 09:52 pm

I spent another $42 on Christmas gifts today.  I'm getting closer and closer to being done.

Variables are at 31%.

The clothing bar in my spare closet collapsed today.  I got it back up, but it's rickety.  Meanwhile, it was the perfect opportunity to go through the clothes that had been hanging there and do some sorting and purging.  These were all "fancy dress" clothes.  I had a collection of them because when I worked in fundraising I needed them for dinners and events.  But now I really don't need them at all.  I saved about 1/4 in case I find myself going to a special event in the future.  I surely wouldn't want to have to buy something new.

I'm going to take the rejects to Goodwill, and I hope they will make someone happy.  Most of them are very nice.  And most of them I got at Goodwill in the first place.

I took Iggy to the vet yesterday.  I spent the whole time in the car.  Iggy went in, and the vet communicated with me via phone.  She prescribed a change of food and Flagyl, and she gave him fluids.  He seems to be much better, but I won't know for sure until he has to poop again.  That seems to be what really throws him out of whack.  The visit plus meds and few trial cans of food was only $49, very reasonable.

More Amazon Shopping

December 4th, 2020 at 02:51 pm

Just spent another $45 for gifts on Amazon.

Iggy was pretty sick yesterday, throwing up and pooping all over.  I'm going to call the vet today as soon as it opens.  

For my part, I am feeling much better after my adverse reaction to the shingles shot.

Shingles Shot

December 3rd, 2020 at 03:51 pm

Yesterday I got the first of two shingles shots.  It was $47.  Unfortunately, I am experiencing chills and fever as well as pain at the injection site.  I was warned that this might happen, so I'm not concerned, just anxious to get past this and start feeling good again.

While I was at Walgreens, I spent $30 on OTC meds, and $39 on groceries.

I  also went to the Kia dealership for a service recall.  Luckily, they didn't find anything else to fix, and it was free.

Today I am spending $4 on laundry.

Variables for this young month are at 16%.

November Recap

December 1st, 2020 at 09:30 pm

Home Repair/Maintenance:  $858

Housing: $824

Gifts/Charities: $507

Utilities: $155

Groceries: $127

Phone: $51

Entertainment: $44

Fees/Services: $44

Eating Out/Takeout: $41

Clothing: $31

Medical/Health: $26

Laundry: $19

Furnishings/Equipment/Decor: $12

Household Supplies: $10

Grand Total: $2749

Variables: 100%

Major spending was on electrical update, and Christmas gifts.