Home > Archive: April, 2023

Archive for April, 2023

April Recap

May 1st, 2023 at 03:37 am

I can't believe April is over already! Here is how my spending went:

Housing - $769

Utilities - $220

Fees & Services - $201 (license plates, Sam's Club)

Gifts/Charity - $108 (Easter dinner, postage for donations, Wikipedia)

Household Supplies - $96 (water filters, laundry detergent)

Car - $89 (oil change, two car washes)

Clothing/Accessories - $70 (walking shoes)

Groceries - $45 (this was low because Easter dinner provided many leftovers)

Vacation/Travel - $44 (day trip to middle city)

Personal - $36 (toothbrushes, haircut)

Phone - $33

Gas - $26

Entertainment - $23

Laundry - $20

Eating Out/Takeout - $9

Fares/Parking - $4

Grand Total - $1819

Variables - 107%

This has been the lowest spending this year, despite the variables being high. No big ticket items. I transferred $900 to savings.



Variables Maxed Out ... And Then Some

April 28th, 2023 at 08:15 pm

Yesterday I met BFF in the middle city for our monthly lunch/gabfest. I spent $44 for gas and food. Then I spent another $70 for new walking shoes. That was unexpected, and it put me over on variables (105%), but I really did need walking shoes, as my current pair is literally falling apart. The bad news is, I began to question the fit last night and took them back to my DSW this morning, only to learn that I couldn't exchange them because I had walked outside. Well, that makes sense, even though they look immaculate to my eyes. So I'm stuck with them. I will have to see how they will work out as walking shoes. If they don't, I'll have to demote them to occasional wear and get another pair for walking. That's a shame, since I really can't afford another pair. In the store, they felt perfect, so perhaps my feet swelled a bit.

With my variables overcharged, I'll have to spend nothing for the next few days. Glad it's only a few days.

So Now I'm Rich?

April 19th, 2023 at 01:08 am

I recently applied for the senior benefit access through the Illinois Council on Aging -- a renewal, actually. I've been receiving the benefit since I retired, but it has run out. To my surprise, I was denied because my income was too large! I checked my figures, and yes, I exceeded the threshhold by less than $500. It was that slight raise to Social Security last year that did it. Not the larger one this year.

Without the senior benefit, I have to pay the full price for my license plates - $151 instead of $25. Also, I no longer will be able to ride the trains or buses for free. I'll have to pay full price.

Most distressing, though, is that I don't know what it will do to my property taxes. I re-applied for the Senior Freeze Exemption before this denial came through, assuming that I still had the benefit access. I checked that box, not knowing I was soon to lose it. I am afraid that I will be denied the freeze exemption as well, and that could make a big difference in what I have to pay in property taxes.

It's disheartening. I'm obviously still low-income, just not QUITE as low-income as before. I know they have to draw a line somewhere, but being on just the other side of the line will make me poorer yet. I guess I should be grateful for the years I did get this benefit. Unless they raise the threshold, there's no way I will get it next year, with the larger increase in Social Security this year.

So I went ahead and spent the $151 for my license plate tags.

I was also automatically charged $50 to renew my Sam's Club membership. I guess that's okay; I do use it. But it came as a surprise, and I'm feeling awfully pinched. Variables are at 88%, with almost two weeks to go.

Tomorrow is my grocery day. I'm going to try to stick to necessities. Luckily, I have quite a few meals in the freezer.

Car Care

April 13th, 2023 at 08:18 pm

Yesterday I got an oil change. It was $81. And I had a coupon! I also went through a car wash for $4.

Variables are now at 58%. I'm less than halfway through the month, so the spending is trending a little fast.


April 11th, 2023 at 03:17 pm

I had my family over for lunch and games on Easter Sunday. I spent $87 on food, which I logged on the Gifts/Charity/Hosting category rather than groceries. I have lots of leftovers, so this will affect my grocery spending. I believe I will skip it tomorrow. I don't think there is anything I really need. 

I ate some leftover salad yesterday, which was already dressed and tossed. I believe it gave me diarrhea. Anyway, I had quite a time in the night. I have to learn not to eat food that is questionable. My digestion is so much more sensitive than it used to be!


April 5th, 2023 at 08:13 pm

I grocery shopped this morning. I was planning to spend $25, since there are four Wednesdays in the month, but I went over by $3. I'll make that up later. I also bought Easter cards ($4) and I spent .50 on parking. Variables are at 24%.