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Save $5,000 in a year for my Expedition Everywhere fund. That was where my financial challenge started.
Also many months ago, a pandemic seemed possible but somewhat unlikely. A lot has changed in a short amount of time but accomplishing my life list has stayed constant.
If anything, this pandemic has taught me that I need to increase my resolve to accomplish my dreams before another wave of climate-induced disaster, infectious pandemic, or other human malady comes in and tries to smash my plans.
I say, no. A resolution is my solution to my current convolution. Boom!
Busted Up Budget
You know what else has stayed constant even with my savings challenge? Budgets are still the best!
Because I use a budget, I know exactly how much is coming in and out every month. I use this information to direct my money. No, you can’t have another purse, more workout gear, and absolutely no ice cream! You. Are. Grounded!
There have been expenses that I have cut this month like personal and restaurant spending. As a way to offset some of the guilt for not supporting my local community, I donated it.
Helplessness is a wave trying to overwhelm me with sadness especially when I hear my loved ones furloughed or laid off. I baton the hatches, ride the wave of uncertainty, and use my untethered funding towards gift cards to buoy my swamped loved ones.
Bing Challenge = Bling Rewards
I cashed in my Microsoft Rewards of $5. I am sure your thinking, baller! Microsoft has a useful reward program. If you sign up for this program, you can get rewarded for searching on their preferred internet browser Bing.
Bing is okay. I enjoy the scenic pictures and it has many functions similar to Chrome. But, sadly, Chrome it is not! It doesn’t have as many viable search options and the user-friendly features are lacking. However, it does pay me to use their platform. Is an occasional inconvenience worth five dollars every other month? I say, yes!
Sinking Funds: Avoiding Budget Sinking
I love sinking funds. Sinking funds are small amounts of money I consistently save with the intent of using it on burdensome bills. I put this money in a separate savings account called, Adulting Adventures.
When I made this sinking fund, I had to invest time in calculating how much money I will need throughout a year for all my large bills like car insurance, ring insurance, copay for medical insurance, Christmas gifts, etc.
I prefer to pay big bills in smaller, less noticeable, chunks instead of half my paycheck going to a bill. Adulting Adventures removes the sting from adulting. Typically paying for big bills as a lump sum is cheaper than paying monthly installments.
The Art of Homebody
I used to be an awful homebody. I was desperate to be seen and do things. That changed when I became broke and less young. Luckily, I changed on my terms versus Coronavirus sticking its ugly head into my personal life. Even before this pandemic, I spent most of my time at home with free hobbies.
At the top of my thrilling homebody endeavors is reading. I love to read. Right now, I am reading three books and frequently read at three blog posts a day. Not to mention the other reading rambles that I pursue on the interweb. This variety increases my knowledge and sparks creativity.
Other homebound shenanigans include drawing. Drawing for Dummies has been a wonderful resource and seriously enhanced my “skills”. My initial comfort zone was stick figures, now I am confidently drawing birds.
Juggling, practicing yoga and meditation, talking to family and friends, taking walks, and baking have increased in frequency. I do recommend some caution with baking. I may have lost muscle mass but I have gained a few pounds with all the extra cookies and pies.
Slow Lane = Big Gains
My side hustle of babysitting is currently extinct which is unfortunate on various levels but I am still incredibly grateful to be employed. This is the primary reason I can say that my Expedition Everywhere account currently sits at $1,761. My challenge was to save $1,600.
Will my future months become leaner? Possibly. However, at this moment, I am going to breathe in the gratitude and breathe out more gratitude.