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Month in Review- June 2015


Hey Everyone! I hope you’re all having a great week.

It’s July 2nd, so that means it’s time for a month in review. June went by in a flash, didn’t it? The summer months always seem to fly by so fast.

Since I didn’t post on Tuesday, I want to share a couple of items that happened over the weekend:

  • The same couple that I went out with earlier in June, invited me and GF out again; this time for dinner AND a movie (BTW- Jurassic World is AMAZING). I happily said “Yes!” but it also broke my “fun” budget for the month, which I carried $50. It wasn’t a big deal since my buddy asked me earlier in the week and I was able to budget for the dinner and movie out of my paycheck vs. having to dip into my emergency fund. I’m just really excited that I don’t have to say “No” to everything anymore.
  • I didn’t have a debt update to share since my last paycheck of the month is delegated to paying my mortgage and some other smaller bills. If I didn’t have any plans during this week, I could normally set aside $70-80 for a debt payment. Since I went out to dinner instead, I made no debt payment this week.

As for June, there was a lot that happened, so to review:

  • Firstly, now that most of my smaller debts are paid off (with only one more to go below $10,000) I had an internal struggle (The Hard Wins) on how to deal with the the fact that the payoffs are going to be few and far between now.
  • The day after my “Hard Wins” post, I increased my 401k contribution from 4% to 10% (which I mentioned in the comments of that same post). Update: I think this was a wise decision. For one- I haven’t noticed much of a difference in my take home pay. It ended up being about a $60 difference, but it’s definitely not hurting my ability to pay my bills. Plus, it’s awesome to see my retirement account grow so much faster!
  • In the following post (Time Off), I decided to use the month of July as a vacation from paying off debt to both enjoy my vacation to Disney and clear my head so I can hit August refreshed and ready to go. Update: vacation is only 7 days away (yay!) and this Wednesday’s paycheck marks the first paycheck in a LONG time (if ever) where I didn’t have to make a debt payment. I’m using all the extra  money to buy myself some new clothes and to stock up on supplies (more on this on Tuesday)
  • I went out for dinner and drinks with a with an awesome couple, in which my “fun” fund came in really handy (here) and was most definitely worth it.
  • In this post (Birthday Party), I went to a good friend’s son’s 1st birthday party. Since I started an ESA account, I figured I give the gift of some cash for my buddy to start one of his own for his son.
  • In the same post, we began our planning for Disney. Since we are driving down, a lot of you had some great ideas our how to make our trip as fun and as frugal as we can. We’ve incorporated many of the ideas into our plan as we want to spend as little money as we have to on our drive down and then back up.
  • Lastly, we had a little Father’s Day celebration (Father’s Day) where GF did some amazing little things for me, as I am the father to our kids (lol, they’re dogs). We also started cementing our Disney plans and GF used her couponing skills to get us a whole bunch of goodies on the cheap.

As for my debt paydown, no big milestones met this month, but I still paid off $1,592.21. Down to a balance of $48,466.83. Not my best month, but not my worst, either.

Hope everyone has a great holiday!


  • Reply Sue |

    You are really knocking out these debts – Matt – it is amazing to watch!! I’m also glad you are “loosening” up a little bit and going out with friend’s to enjoy life instead of totally focusing on debt. Everything in balance!!!

  • Reply Ben DeBoer |

    Hi Matt,
    Have you dabbled in any side jobs as a means to make your dig-out-of-debt shovel a little bit larger? I was in a bad spot like you a few years ago (my debt total was a little lower – around $75K). I went to garage sales on the weekends and thrift stores during the week to buy stuff at deep discounts to resell on eBay. We were able to pay off the $75K predominantly through this means alone. But it looks like you’re making pretty good progress with whatever you’re doing. Keep up the good work!

    • Reply Matt |

      Ben- I’m a little late to the comments on this post :/. TBH, I’ve actually had some side jobs after college as a means to bring in a lager income. I hated it. But this was nearly a minimum wage job (I bus’d tabled, so I made ~$5/hr + tips, IIRC). How much time did you invest when you were doing the garage sales thing, and did you have any knowledge of such a hobby before dabbling in it? That’s what intimidates me the most from starting something like this- I don’t know anything about it.

      I’m really interested in this, so I look forward to hearing back from you.

  • Reply kili |

    Agreeing with Sue. It’s good that you brought some balance to your life, so that you won’t eventually tire of the debt paying mode.

So, what do you think ?