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Starting with a change of plans

Today I was supposed to go down to visit my grandparents since I had to work when the rest of the family had the Christmas get together. I wake up to a text from my grandmother saying that she caught some sort of bug. This saves me 2-2 hour drives today, but now I don’t have anything to do. Not having anything planned is dangerous for me. I tend to resort to sitting around eating, watching TV, and slowly thinking about what I could get from Amazon with 2 day shipping.

Today I got my car cleaned because it was filthy, and went to my chiropractor appointment. Forcing myself to go to the gym this afternoon, and see what I can declutter.

I think every week, I’ll post my net worth and weight as a tracker for how I am doing. I’ll also be creating a spreadsheet to track both, with graphs.

April 2022 Review

Market downturns and Medical bills all in the same month. Even with that, I was able to pay down my debt an extra $1,000. This month was kind of a blur because of how busy things have been.

My energy has been peaks and valleys because I’ll do a 12+ hour day doing shows, and then a day at the office and sitting on the couch because I’m sore from the day before. I’m working on trying to flatten those valleys and keep me from couch potato-ing.

Total Assets: $61,035.80
Total Liabilities: -$38,675.33
Net Worth: $22,360.47
Monthly Change:-$4950.67
YTD change:-$9,061.86

Weight: 191.5lbs
Monthly Change:-0.5lbs
YTD Change:-6.5lbs

March 2022 Review

So although it looks like I still made a positive move on my net worth this month, Next month is going to tank around $4,000. Hope fully less. I have to pay for the tonsillectomy I just had. I am extremely grateful for my employer and their kickass insurance. Without insurance this 15 minute procedure and 4ish hour hospital stay would have cost me well over $15,000! Also because of the recovery, at my lowest this month, I was down 12 pounds. I’ve gotten 4 of those back, and I’m working my hardest to keep them off and continue the downward trend.

I realized that I also had some laziness creep. I singed up for Peacock to watch the Olympics. Only $7.99! Well I didn’t cancel in time and got stuck with another month. So I have now cancelled and am definitely getting my eight bucks worth before the end of the next month.

Coming down the pipeline, I’m working on asking for another raise and will document the before, planning and result of my raise request.

Total Assets: $66,178.44
Total Liabilities: -$38,867.30
Net Worth: $27,311.14
Monthly Change:+$621.39
YTD change:-$4,111.19

Weight: 192.0lbs
Monthly Change:-8.0lbs
YTD Change:-6.0lbs

Sayonara Crypto

This week I finally liquidated all of my crypto assets. At the end of it all I put in $1,700 in purchases, and mined $50. I sold at a loss at $1,100. I had mostly Ravencoin (RVN), Cosmos (ATOM), and Algorand (ALGO).

As it turns out, I don’t have the fortitude to stomach the volatility. I started my Crypto Journey dollar cost averaging Ethereum to the amount of $500. That then grew to $1,000 and I pulled out and bought $100 of Cosmos and Algorand each. The rest went in Ravencoin. This was all in 2020. I doubled my money in 2020 alone.

Then in mid 2021, I started mining Ravencoin on my laptop which ended up getting me 500 coins until I shut down about a month ago. My laptop was getting me about $7/month until the coin halved, and then it was more of a nuisance to deal with as it bogged down my computer. And if I wanted any decent return, It needed to run 24/7 minus my commute.

I “bought the dips” a couple times, and those dips were not the bottom. So My $1,700 in brought me to this week.

If I would have gotten into mining before the pandemic hit and been able to make a decent rig, it could have been a profitable endeavor. But I think I jumped on the bandwagon too late and was there when the tide went out with my pants down.

I definitely see the use of Crypto. Especially when it comes to having to pay someone internationally and not having to pay extreme fees. Or have an easier way to transfer money between each other. But now with systems like Venmo, and Cash app, I’m starting to see the second reason a little less.

When I look at investing, I personally want something that I can see how it makes a return. A lot of these coins are a get quick rich scheme for those that get in early or create the coin. I like my boring stocks, and real estate. They are usually predictable and are tangible.

In the short term, I basically used crypto as a forced savings account. It got me excited to see a massive dip and hope that the $100 bucks I threw at it double one day, and then return the next. But even crypto can’t be truly regulation free. The second the government realizes that they can get a cut of the profits, it’ll settle down to be mostly stable and utility coins. Meme coins are going to dry up the second that regulations hit.

At least I have $1,100 to throw at debt and get that much closer to Financial Freedom.

Things I learned from my Tonsillectomy

On Match 15th, I finally evicted my tonsils. This was 3 years in the making. I was talking to my ENT the week before the world shut down and all “elective” surgeries were cancelled. I was warned that it would be much worse as an adult, and boy was that right.

I started having tonsillitis a couple of times a year, and tonsil stones at least 3 times a week. For those of you that have never heard of tonsil stones, aka tonsilloliths, are calcified food, puss, or dead skin cells that build up in the crevices of tonsils, and although they are soft, they feel like a chip lodged in your throat. About a month ago, I was getting them daily and had a couple of them that were stuck.

It amazes me that in my 5 hours in the hospital for this procedure, it was only about 20 minutes of actual time under the knife. Luckily, I don’t have that bad of a reaction to anesthesia, but the healing process is and has been awful.

I tend to be very talkative, and I can’t handle more than a couple of sentences before I need Ice chips or cold water to help the pain. I also am a “can’t sit still” kind of person, and being stuck in my apartment, eating soft foods, and not being allowed to lift more than 20 pounds, I. Am. Going. Crazy.

My job only has so much that I can do from home, and that was done by day 3 of recovery. I’m now on day 7. I have done my taxes, watched through half of Bob’s Burgers, Worked on my will, and played some video games. The biggest problem is that I’m on my own for the majority of the day, as I am self sufficient after my surgery. My wife only had to miss the day of my surgery.

Some of the positives I have had so far in this journey are:
– I didn’t need heavy pain killers (I was worried about that)
– I am a pro at making jello
– I’ve gotten a lot of deskwork done that I normally wouldn’t have gotten to
– I haven’t had any tonsil stones
– I’ve lost 9 pounds since the surgery

From what I’ve read, and heard, I am either half or a third of the way through the recovery process. I’m hoping I only have 1 week left. Especially since every day, I have felt better, and better.

If you would have asked me if it was worth getting done a couple of days ago, I would have said no, as I couldn’t sleep because I was so uncomfortable. But I can’t wait until the days that I don’t have daily throat pain.

February 2022 Review

I kept getting knocked down this month. We had to bury my Aunt, and now Her father, My Grandfather passed away 2 days ago. He was in Hospice for almost a week. And I let it get the best of me. I stopped paying attention to what I was eating. I didn’t feel like cooking so I ate out a ton, spending much more than I should have. It is a big reminder how much my mental state can change my entire world. Spending, eating went up, physical activity went down.

I also am getting my tonsils out, as a 29 year old, which apparently is not fun as an adult) which is going to end up costing me a decent chunk of change. My wife had an MRI and might need surgery on her skull and brain stem, as well as another surgery on her ear.

The only positive is that we’ll probably reach both of our deductibles by the end of March, so it looks like its time to get everything done this year. I’m extremely grateful for my employer’s plan. We just meet the HDHP requirements so I can have an HSA, and they are super flexible with recovery time and other needed time off. However, 1-2 weeks of not being able to lift much and other restrictions might make me go crazy. So if anyone has any ideas for hobbies that I can have while sitting on the couch that don’t cost a ton, hit me up!

Next month will be better. With being laid up for a bit, I’ll be spending a lot less on fuel, and food, especially with a liquid diet for the first couple of days. I’m going to be best friends with my blender. Once I’m healed up, I plan on going back to the trainer, as I had to postpone my sessions because I stupidly threw out my back and then my shoulder. I will lose weight, I will save money, and I will get better mentally. I will.

Total Assets: $65,864.26
Total Liabilities: -$39,174.51
Net Worth: $26,689.75
Monthly Change:-$1,237.51
YTD change:-$4,732.58

Weight: 200.0lbs
Monthly Change:+3.2lbs
YTD Change:+2.0lbs

January 2021

Anyone following the stock market knows that it’s been slightly down in the last month. Which is no cause to panic. However, I ended up not trusting that my auto debit for my student loans would go through (just set it up a couple of weeks ago because new provider), so to be safe, I made a second payment on those this month. I found one of my creeping issues with my credit card. I had a couple of subscriptions, and store apps connected to that card, which isn’t helping my pay down progress. I have now switched to my debit card so I can better track my spending and get that card paid down. All plans for a house are on hold until I get my financial house in order. I’m on the fence about when to pull out some of my taxable investments to pay off a good chunk of my debt. Hopefully soon.

I have to attribute my weight loss this month to my eating. I threw my back out, like super bad. I twisted and tried lifting a 100lb truss and felt a shock from my lower back all the way down to my toes. No major damage done, but It kept me in bed for a couple of days and I’m still mildly feeling it 3 weeks later. If I’m not 100% soon, I’ll be doing physical therapy.

Total Assets: $67,382.32
Total Liabilities: -$39,410.16
Net Worth: $27,972.16
Monthly Change:-$3,495.07
YTD change:-$3,495.07

Weight: 196.8lbs
Monthly Change:-1.2lbs
YTD Change:-1.2lbs

Delaying the home

Since housing prices are still sky high by us, my wife and I did some research. We looking into modular (manufactured) homes. For those not in the know, Modular homes are not mobile homes, they are mostly prefabricated in a facility, then shipped in pieces, and assembled on site. Most of the literature makes it seem that it is much, much cheaper to do this.

From the cost of the house itself, that would be true. a 1,600 sq ft home starts around $160,000. So great deal right? Wrong. That is just the price of the home. by the time you buy the land ($20,000-60,000), dig and pour the foundation (~$20,000), get utilities set up, ($5,000- $15,000) and then have the land grated and a driveway poured ($8,000), you are already looking at a $250,000 to $300,000 project. We assumed it would max out around $250,000 not start there.

Our original plan was to finance the land, pay it off over a couple years, prepare it ourselves, and then once we either have the cash or have the land paid off, put the house on the land. But that would have been for a max cost of $200,000. Which would be approximately a $1,000 monthly mortgage payment. A home that is already built for that price around us right now, is a low square footage, needs a lot of work, fixer upper. And we don’t have the time for that right now in our lives. Plus our rent, utilities, and insurance is $750/month once we factor in our roommate, who most likely won’t be joining us when we go to a house.

So looking at our current situations, I’m spending $600/month just on my private student loans. Which sit at $18,000 right now. I’ve been looking at dumping my savings to knock out some of the higher interest loans (which sadly are my biggest so there is no debating the avalanche vs snowball because they literally are both the same). That would bring me down to just under $8,000 left, which if I focus really hard and bring in some extra cash, I could have them paid off within the year. That would leave me with my federal loans, which only set me back $185/month. But I’m still holding out hope that someone in the government will knock out some of that. Plus all of those loans are sub 3% interest, so not super worried about those.

If I knock out that debt, and with the extra cash going I have been putting into my loans, I could reasonably save/invest over $1,200/month. So the real payoff of not having debt will mean that the slightly over $10,000 I have now will be back within 2 years. Faster If I can work on a side hustle.

So for now, we are going to stay in our apartment that is priced below market value, and keep making our financial position stronger. If I can even start a side hustle that profits me $300/month, which is totally doable, I can be debt free completely by March of 2023. And I’ll be able to save over $2,000/month on my own.

2021 Review

I can’t believe that looking back 2 years ago, I had half as much in assets and a net worth of negative $6,115.44, I weight 206 pounds and although my weight hasn’t changed much, my waistline has. I am more in shape (less pear shaped), Have more confidence and have more confidence financially.

Out of all of my assets, my retirement is my biggest by a land slide at 52.91%. Here’s how it all breaks down:
Retirement: $38,040.59 52.91%
Car: $16,649 23.16%
Other investments: $8,995.43 12.51%
Cash: $5,216.37 7.25%
Other Physical Assets: ~$3,000 4.17%

I would have never thought that Even in only 2 years, I could see the graph going so far up and to the right. I know that this year has slightly flattened the curve because in 2020 I gained $25k of the $45k I have in change of my net worth. And in 2021 I was just shy of $21k. But that was when we were in the middle of the pandemic and all my wife and I did was go to work, come home, and play board games. No going out to eat, no travelling, no entertainment.

This year I received an $8,000 raise at work. Currently, I plan on having that tackle the rest of my personal debt and start to hit my student loans. And just with that extra money, I should be completely debt free in the next 2 years. Probably less if I can find a good side hustle that works with my busy schedule.

I appreciate all of the people who have read and liked my posts over the past 2 years. My goals for the upcoming year (because we all know how well New Year’s Resolutions work) are to do more writing, reading, and figure out how to focus more and stray less from the path I’d like to take. We have the goal and hope to be out of our apartment and into a house in 2022. But the housing market by us is outpacing inflation and even my raise for this year.

We have started to look at alternative options like modular homes, and even building our own home as it looks like building material cost is starting to settle, and land is not as overpriced as the houses around us.

We went to an open house for a $170,000 house which before the pandemic would have been able to get us 1,500+ sq ft, 3 bed 2 bath, and all in decent condition, only minor fixes. The house we looked at was 1,000 sq ft, 2 bed 1 bath, needed all new flooring, some drywall, massive cleaning (former smokers and cat owners and we are severely allergic to cats), the garage had structural issues, and the what was once blacktop driveway that has crumbled into gravel again. And that got into a bidding war and sold for $199,900. At the open house I overheard, who I think was a flipper say that this house looks like it would have needed $20,000+ in renovations and he didn’t think it would turn a profit.

So the house might be a 2023 thing. Plus we are weighing the whole building our own house because it would mean potentially less issues upon purchase for maintenance, and we wouldn’t have to live with someone else’s interesting choices in home remodeling.

Total Assets: $71,901.39
Total Liabilities: -$40,479.06
Net Worth: $31,422.33
Monthly Change:+$4,055.27
YTD change:+$20,693.95
Change since first tracking: +45,854.17

Weight: 198lbs
Monthly Change:+3.8lbs
YTD Change:+4lbs

November 2021 Review

November was a suprisingly quick month. Historically, it has been the slowest month out of the year for me. After working 25 ish days in October, November slows down to the point that I only had 8 show days. So I get lazy, fall victim to online shopping and put on the weight.

This year is different. I tried my best to stay active, and the only things I bought online were things that I actually needed. Like new drip pans for my stove, and parts for my 3D printer and car.

I was doing so well at keeping up with my exercise until I took a fall and irritated my lower back, which as luck would have it, was right before thanksgiving, which I knew I’d be weak to all of the wonderful food I had put in front of me. I still ate too much, but I didn’t feel like someone needed a forklift to get me back to the car. So I guess, small victories.

This year (8months) of being back in my preferred job has been crazy busy, which hopefully means a very large bonus come Christmas. I’m planning on shoving that right at my loans and have a credit card fully paid off. so One to go and then I’ll be able to tackle my student loans within the next 12 to 18 months!

Total Assets: $67,685.12
Total Liabilities: -$40,318.06
Net Worth: $27,367.06
Monthly Change:+$3,342.95
YTD change:+$16,638.68

Weight: 194.2lbs
Monthly Change:+0.2lbs
YTD Change:+0.2lbs

October 2021 Review

This month I found out that my cheap scale is not even close to reality. I have a new one and have weighed myself with a load cell, and shipping scale and found that I’m a little over 10 pounds heavier than I though I was. And after testing some different weights, it wasn’t off in a linear way, so I couldn’t trust it. So Starting the new benchmark. This new information pushed me to try noom. I’ve lost 2 pounds in the last 3 weeks. And I’ve cut out a lot of super unhealthy foods that I didn’t realize were holding me back.

This month has been great financially for me. I’ve been so busy that I haven’t had the time to spend money and My investments have done decently well. The dabbling in crypto with around 2% of my net worth has ballooned and I was able to pull out at the right time. I doubt I’ll get that lucky again, but it was fortunate.

Total Assets: $63,248.02
Total Liabilities: -$39,223.91
Net Worth: $24,024.11
Monthly Change:+$3,221.58
YTD change:+$13,295.73

Weight: 194.0lbs
Monthly Change:?
YTD Change:?