November 2017 Plan Update

November 2017 Plan Update

November came and went in a flash. It included a stressful week at the office (which included the hotel giving Kate @ Goodnight Debt and I chlorine burns). It also included a weekend with my sister (post-stress workweek) that included binge-watching and many delicious desserts. At the home front, we’re in the thick of sledding and ice skating season. Mr. T has successfully shaped our driveway snowpile into a sledding track as usual and we’re all enjoying ourselves. Christmas decorations are up and we’re enjoying our holidays so far with food, warm drinks, and cozy blankets. My favorite way!

The Numbers:

Want to know how easy it is for us to write these every month? I literally just log into my Personal Capital and revel in all the numbers being in one place. Do you like checking numbers? Do you like graphics? Do you like playing with calculators like retirement calculators and how much your fees are costing you? Then, you should obviously use my affiliate link to Sign up here to help yours truly speed toward financial independence! (Also feel free to read my more in-depth review of Personal Capital.)

Our mortgage is now at $32,900. I’m basically throwing all our money toward this to make our goal of getting this under $30k next month. WE CAN DO IT! I am REALLY excited to see this in the $20,000s. Then it will seem much more doable to crush it in 2018 completely! Woo hoo!

Investments are now at $183,600. My goodness! These markets have really reached bonkers levels. I’m loving it. Don’t get me wrong. But insane. I can’t see these levels lasting through 2018 (hope we get our mortgage paid off before they correct!).

For our savings percentage, we track the percentage of our pre-tax (or gross) income and the extra payments put toward the mortgage are included in the amount saved. Savings percentage for November – 50%. Nice! It really helps that we include extra payments towards our mortgage in this number. 🙂

2017 Financial Goal Update:

Disclaimer: Other than the earnings and the mortgage, the rest of these are out the window. I’ve told you that I’m terrible at financial multi-tasking. Let’s get rid of that mortgage and then I’ll be able to move forward on the other savings!

  • Earn $25,000 – ($24,493.11/$25,000) –  We’re amazing! I can’t believe we’re this close! (Yay for our new side hustle selling shirts!)
  • Mortgage Balance below $30,000 – (Currently at $32,900 – Only $2,900 left! YASSS!)
  • Max out Mr. T’s 401k – This is set up already and if nothing changes, he should automatically max it out this year for the first time! Yay for automatic payments!
  • Put $5500 into My Roth IRA – $0 progress so far.
  • $2500 in other investments – $0 progress so far.
  • $200,000 Investment Balance by the end of the year – Only $16,400 to go! These crazy markets! (again, I don’t really count on market-based goals because I have no control.)

Notable Expenses This Month: The Story Our Money Tells:

These are expenses that tell an interesting story. A peek into our lives through our pocketbook:

  • $348.15 – Tickets to see Matilda with the kids in London (their Christmas present from us).
  • $315 – We got all 3 kids passports! (we took our own passport pictures at home and printed them at Costco because sometimes we like being frugal)
  • $30 – Pho on date night.
  • $30 – Babysitting for date night. We went out for pho for dinner and then went to see a play in a theatre where the heater died. It was SO COLD. At intermission, Mr. T got our emergency blanket out of the car so we didn’t die. Everyone in the theatre kept their snow coats, mittens, scarves and hats on for the whole performance. At least the play was good!
  • $20.95 – Thrift store shopping with my sister. I got some new jeans and a few things for the kids.
  • $23.77 – I actually bought Avocado toast (and bought my sister a croque monsieur). It was delicious. (She bought all the pastries we ate for dessert the rest of the evening!)
  • $70 – More swim lessons for Lui (he’s learning so much!)
  • $40 – More piano lessons for the girls.

EXTRA INCOME (anything that doesn’t come from our jobs/my freelance work):

  • $1,078 – Selling shirts online.
  • $9.17 – MyFinance (those ads at the bottom of each page).
  • $12.16 – Amazon Affiliate payment

Financial Phrases:

These are things said by actual people that were either talking to me or near me enough that I could hear them:

  • “I keep going in to the doctor about my toe and it doesn’t seem to be getting better. Every time I go in, it costs money. So last time, I tried to be very direct by asking: ‘is this going to kill me?'”
  • Lui: “Mommy, what’s money?” I was excited to start teaching him, but then realized he was just having a very metaphysical day because his next question was: “What’s a sled” to which I replied “you know what a sled is. The thing we use to ride down hills on the snow.” His response: “But what does it MEAN?!”


How We Manage the Kid Stuff


Why We’re On the Slow Route to Early Retirement


  1. Nice job on reaching your earnings goal. And Matilda in London, that will be fantastic!

    • MaggieBanks

      Thanks! We’re pretty excited to surprise the kids with it at Christmas. Mr. T and I saw it last year when we were in London and knew our kids would love it.

  2. What does any of it mean, Lui?? It’s such a good question.

    I’m having trouble pinning down any NW goal because the market is wackypants. I want to set one just to have something to aim at, but really it seems a bit silly and futile since there’s a big part of it that isn’t at all under our control.

    Y’all are doing great on the shirt sales! I’ve got to keep at working those designs in between big tasks until / if I finally get approved.

    All in all, sounds like November was lovely for y’all.

    • MaggieBanks

      OH man. Net worth goals are hilarious to me – especially market-based ones. Who the heck knows?! And we are LOVING our new roles as shirt designers. It’s such a great fit for us. Can’t wait until you’re approved!

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