An Update of Sorts


We loved reading you guys’ input on my oil change drama. I had some grocery shopping to do yesterday at Walmart (new month, new grocery budget finally!), and I took the opportunity to go and talk to the oil change mechanics. I actually had them rotate my tires since they only charge $10 (I know… I said I wouldn’t give them my business!), and when it came time to pay, I talked to the supervisor about my concerns. It felt good letting him know that I didn’t appreciate the upselling and the choice of words they used (“required”) to get me to pay more. And I was able to get my point across without getting huffy and puffy or emotional, so I’ll call it a win.

Johnny and I are working to save as much as we can this month and next since November and December tend to be kind of spendy months for us. Sometimes we travel for the holidays, which costs extra moolah. And our Christmas shopping usually starts in November, so I feel like September and October are our last-ditch opportunity to meet our savings goals for the year. We’ll still save money in November and December, but possibly not as much.

We’ve got some fun topics coming up. So if you’ve had your mind on any of the following stuff, stay tuned:

  • Life insurance (how to choose how much and how to open an account)
  • 529 college savings plan (how we finally went about opening an account)
  • Having a will (why you might need one and how we’re doing ours… morbid but necessary topic)
  • Car insurance (some of you noticed our monthly car insurance bill in our August budget, so we’ll explain more about that)

We’re excited to share those and other posts soon. As another update, Johnny and I didn’t hit our side income surplus goal for the month of August, so we didn’t buy any clothes. You better believe I was pushing for us to give in and get some anyway, but luckily Johnny kept us strong. And so we’re going for it again this month. It’s a fun, extra motivator. If we don’t hit it this month, though, I don’t think I’ll find it so fun anymore. So we better hit it!

Lastly, here are a couple of articles we recently wrote over at DailyFinance:

That’s what’s going on with us. We’re trying to soak up the last drops of summer while we can. Winter comes hard and fast here in Utah. A snowstorm in October isn’t out of the question, so we’ll be playing outside and going on evening walks while we still can! Any other budgety topics you’d like to see covered in the near future on OFB? 

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  • Reply Kelsey September 4, 2014 at 9:02 am

    Car insurance has been on my brain for the past month or two, so I’m glad y’all are going to cover that soon!

    Since you mentioned the weather…. I’ll be visiting Salt Lake City & Idaho Falls in October for a wedding, and this Southern girl has no idea what to expect weather-wise. Are there still fall leaves at that point or is it in full blown winter mode? I’d greatly appreciate any insight you can offer!

    • Reply Joanna September 5, 2014 at 12:45 am

      How fun! Yes, October is beautiful out here! We do a scenic drive through the mountains the second week of October or so. Most the leaves might be gone by the end of October. And it might not be winter quite yet… sometimes October is quite pleasant!

  • Reply J.Mill September 4, 2014 at 9:31 am

    Looking forward to the life insurance discussion! I like how you guys tackle topics that interest me as a young-ish person but that I feel most blogs don’t address as/to young people. Glad to know there are other 20-somethings thinking about life insurance and having a will 🙂

    • Reply Joanna September 5, 2014 at 12:46 am

      Such boring topics, but they’re actually things we’re thinking about these days! So we figure other people probably are, too… good to know that’s true in your case!

  • Reply Kassandra @ More Than Just Money September 4, 2014 at 2:35 pm

    I’ll be looking forward to your car insurance post. In NY I find that we’re paying too much even though we have the basic/mandatory coverage for two paid off cars.

    • Reply Joanna September 5, 2014 at 12:47 am

      It seems everything’s more expensive in NY! We never had cars when we lived out there, but I can only imagine. Hope we can share some helpful insight!

  • Reply Brandy@bustedbudget September 4, 2014 at 8:36 pm

    Can’t wait to read about life insurance and wills. Two things I know we need ASAP.

    • Reply Joanna September 5, 2014 at 12:48 am

      Not the most fun topics to think about, but they’re both definitely necessary!

  • Reply Rob September 4, 2014 at 8:37 pm

    Well Joanna, here’s hoping that you guys do meet your upcoming savings goals but, knowing you two, I’m pretty sure that you’ll get it done (without having to rob your friendly neighborhood bank – lol).

    Having already been through the years of purchasing insurance for various purposes, setting up our wills (many moons ago), as well as RESPs for our kids college education (comparable to your 529 plans), I’ll be looking forward to your comments on these matters.

    One additional thing however, besides tending to our wills, was that we set up our Powers of Attorney at the same time. It’s something important that you might well also consider. Here’s a link providing some details about it:

    Oh, and btw, today here in Toronto the weather was in the 80’s F and the Farmers Almanac predicts that we’ll be getting some Indian Summer weather this October. And so it goes …

    • Reply Joanna September 5, 2014 at 12:50 am

      Thanks for the powers of attorney tip. We haven’t looked into that. I would hope you’re feeling lucky about that Indian summer coming your way. I really hope it turns out the same for us!

    • Reply Tarynkay September 6, 2014 at 5:09 pm

      We also went ahead and set up a living will when we did our family estate planning. This dictates what we want to happen in the case of a medical emergency, whether we would want to be on life support, etc. You know, just some more fun, lighthearted topics!

      • Reply Joanna September 10, 2014 at 1:30 am

        Haha, oh man, so much fun! Thanks for the tip!

  • Reply Mrs. Frugalwoods September 6, 2014 at 9:12 am

    We’re in the same weather boat up here in Boston! Trying to hike and enjoy the outdoors as much as possible before hunkering down for our October-May winter :). Ok maybe not May, but April at least! Looking forward to reading along in September. Hope you’re having a great weekend!

    • Reply Joanna September 10, 2014 at 1:30 am

      Oh, yes. I remember all too well our Boston winter. The snow is beautiful, but it is COLD!

  • Reply Jay @ September 6, 2014 at 6:48 pm

    529 Plans are a mystery to me, but then again I don’t have kids. Looking forward to following your posts!


    • Reply Joanna September 10, 2014 at 1:31 am

      Oh, they’re just a barrel of fun, you just wait!

  • Reply Melanie September 11, 2014 at 4:01 pm

    I like how you brought that up about “spendy months.” So, Im going to have a spendy 4 months for sure. I’m moving at the end of this month…so that explains that! I’m thinking the whole move will cost under $2K…and then I want to complete my emergency fund, and THEN Christmas shopping. OH BOY! Lots to think about from now through January 1 financial-wise.
    I need to do a will, and I’ll be changing my car insurance at least by moving from PA to MA so I’ll look forward to those posts!! 🙂

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