Thursday, November 03, 2005

Net worth update

Well, it wasn't pretty this month. My net worth declined to $244,664.50. I was actually afraid it would be much worse. My E*Trade and Fidelity 401K accounts suffered, as did most people's, I'm sure. But I'm still doing ok in terms of saving money. My "cash and bank accounts" in Quicken rose from $76,017.55 to $78,194.30, despite my having taken $1,000 out of that to buy another I-Bond (which lives over in the "investment accounts" group).
The gain is mainly due to some business expense reimbursements and my raise coming through. My expenses were actually quite high this month, due to my vacation and having a friend staying with me for a while. My food expenses actually hit the 4-figure mark this month, despite my valiant efforts to eat most of my breakfast at home and buy lunch less often. I am getting much better at cooking dinners that provide tasty leftovers for the next day. I just hope no one at work notices that I am gnawing on chunks of cold steak at lunchtime. Like an animal.

Quick summary of the spending:
Embarrassing amount on food. Okay, $1,091.
$862 travel/vacation
$20 charity
$97 clothes
$74 entertainment
$70 gifts given
$105 telephone
$10 gym/fitness (guest pass to go swimming while on vacation)
$50 household (laundry etc)
$89 "miscellaneous" (a haircut, some tips and {shudder} a couple of Lotto tickets. I was weak.)
and the usual other stuff like rent, insurance, newspaper subscription, etc...
Anyway, despite a few splurges I am still living within my means, at least if you define that as not spending your entire paycheck!


Caitlin said...

That's not too bad a cost for a week-long vacation, don't you think?

And foodwise...yeah...that's a lot when just categorized as "food" but some of that time it was for 2 people right? And I bet some of the time you both ate out at restaurants my point is, it might be worth it to separate out things like groceries and takeout as a "feeding yourself" type expense...but keeping "fun" restaurant expenses in a category like entertainment or some such thing that more accurately describes what you get out of it.

For example, while you were on vacation did you categorize food spending as food or vacation?

Maybe it doesn't really make any difference how you slice it ;) but I am thinking that if you look at that big number as food for a can seem huge. but if you pull out what was really leisure, entertainment and vacation eating then the sum total expense of having a fun month won't seem out of proportion.

Or am I just enabling your wine habit ;) heehee

Madame X said...

Actually that is a really good idea! I already break my food spending into sub categories for breakfast, lunch, dinner, liquor and groceries, but maybe I should add a line for "recreational eating" to distinguish high-value really great meals in cool restaurants from boring chinese takeout.
But yes, all my food was under food, and vacation was just hotel, gas and rental car bills. And the overall travel category also included my monthly subway pass and a taxi ride, so it was a pretty reasonable vacation.