I haven't done one of these in a while.
But we haven't had a normal month in so long!
May - paying ahead on our bills in a huge way so nothing would come due during our trip.
June - half the month in Croatia
July - almost all of the month in Croatia
August - "Where did all this money come from?" -- the budget was still skewed from paying all that stuff ahead
September - The Magician got a new job and a "thank you" bonus from his old job.
October- His paycheck from his new job had the two days he worked in September on it so we still didn't know how much he'd be making
November - Sort of a normal month except for car insurance.
December - We had a huge expense (paying cash for a car) and a huge influx of money (the check from the insurance company for the totaled car).
Hopefully normal is coming!
Our saving account this time last year we had $1,425.83 less in it. Yup--we are ahead $1,425.83 from last year! That sounds pretty awful ("Who are you to blog about frugality?"), but keep in mind we took a trip of a lifetime that we'd been saving for for four years, paid cash for a newer car, and knocked $9,416.41 off of our mortgage. We bought our house 4 years ago and hope to have it paid off in another 6 years. We've already cut the mortgage in half--if we had to resume normal payments, we'd pay it off in 11 years.
And, no, five-week vacations aren't frugal. But we're also not going to live our lives in tomorrow, always saving and never enjoying right now.
Our goal this year, though, is no big expenses! We want to dramatically increase our savings rate and hope to make some sizable lump-sump mortgage payments.