Each month I will post an update on my finances to both give you, the reader, some insight into my situation and to give me markers of my progress on my financial journey. My updates include both spending and net worth.
- Spending is divided into joint and individual spending. My husband gets $600 a month and I get $450 a month for our own individual spending as an “allowance.”
- I don’t include charitable contributions in our numbers below, but we allocate 10% of our post-tax income to this each year.
- Our net worth goal tracked using undisclosed units of money. Our goal is to hit “Financial Equilibrium”, based on Thomas J. Anderson’s book The Value of Debt in Building Wealth. This is fairly close to our FIRE number.
October was a pretty stressful month.
House. We had to move out of our house for a week to get our place de-leaded, and now that we’re back I’m finding a thousand little annoying things we need to do that are weighing on me:
- replace the broken towel bar in the bathroom,
- replace rusting ductwork near intake register,
- replace mixing valve and fixtures in the shower,
- install under-sink water filter in the kitchen,
- send additional inquiries on installing battery backup for our solar array (it’s astonishing how hard it is to get people to just please take my money for this thing),
- insulate the water heater and copper pipes leading to it,
- clean and refill our emergency water reserves,
- recaulk under one of our windowsills,
- recaulk the bathtub,
- install new gutter spout extensions and/or find a good way to nail down the “duckfeet” extenders our downstairs neighbor for goodness knows what reason keeps kicking out of the way, thus causing water to flow into the ground near the corners of the house instead of down the graded concrete path as according to the landscape design of the property
In general, I do like owning our place, but sometimes homeownership feels like a part-time job.
Work. At work, I had a number of really stressful projects launch this month. Everything went okay, it was just very tiring. It doesn’t help that the company in general is not doing well and is projected to continue not doing well through middle of next year. I’m feeling senioritis since it feels like nothing I do will be of meaningful impact and I’m not planning to return after my maternity leave anyway.
I updated my LinkedIn and have started taking recruiter calls. Despite being pretty well-established in my career at this point, I still hate going through interviews. A few big companies (and a number of startups I’m not really interested in) have reached out, so the market isn’t completely dead yet, despite all the tech layoffs on the news. I’m hoping the situation isn’t terrible in Q1/Q2 next year when I plan to apply in earnest.
As an alternative, I’m seriously considering starting my own business while I’m out on maternity leave. I have an idea that I think I could probably run by myself, over time adding a couple employees. The idea is in e-commerce and initial startup cost should be relatively low to validate the idea, probably would earmark around $5-10K. I think I should be able to systematize it (minimize recurring time investment necessary) and scale it large enough to cover at least a lean version of our household expenses within about a year. I like the idea of having my own thing and having the flexibility to scale up/scale down my time investment to make room for what I and the baby need. And, honestly, if not now then when? I do want to be careful not to end up working way more for way less money, which is a distinct possibility. But we’ll see how much time and effort I want to dedicate to it once the baby is here. For now I’m doing some lightweight analytics, website, and graphic design to put together the broad business case.
Pregnancy. In terms of pregnancy, “pregnancy insomnia” has been kicking my butt the last couple weeks. I’ve been waking up maybe 3-4 times a night trying to find a comfortable position, going to the bathroom, having trouble falling asleep while the baby happily kicks my intestines. I’m tired and have heartburn all the time. Also, my dentist told me I need braces soon, so that’ll be fun to add to my postpartum recovery. I look pretty haggard and my body feels like it’s falling apart. Honestly, I feel “ugly”, which I know is a bunch of internalized misogyny creeping into my brain, but, like, it’s there and it’s a real feeling that I’m having right now.
Happy little things. Still, I know I’m lucky overall and life is good. My husband and I have started nesting and watching L&D and newborn care video courses, and it’s been a really nice bonding experience. I got to spend a lot of time with my BFF’s almost-toddler (he’s getting so close to walking) while we crashed at their place during our de-leading, and it was just really nice to feel a part of a family with them for a week. Also, a lot of my SPD pain has gone away, so I don’t feel like my groin is literally being split in two every time I walk— that’s been a big upgrade in quality of life.
Other. Minor non-personal update that was technically a September update but then my post got eaten by WordPress: The Merge happened. So, for those who were crytpo-skeptical due to environmental impact, the issues at least on all the smart contract platforms has been addressed (including, in this case, Ethereum). So now, Bitcoin is the last remaining proof of work coin with a big energy footprint. And Litecoin/Dogecoin, I suppose, though those are much smaller.
How was your October?