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Kids are expensive

June 9th, 2019 at 04:29 am

Or I guess, it depends upon whether you are indulgent. And, I am. But, in my humble opinion, not as much as others.

Yes, I spoil my kids in many ways. They play (expensive) sports and the teenaged girl gets Lululemon yoga pants and jeans from Hollister. Purchases are made in moderation and she doesn’t have an unique outfit for every day of the month. So, there are some extravagant purchases but her closet isn’t overflowing.

Admittedly, some of those purchases are for my benefit. I was a chubby teenager and my clothes came from Lane Bryant or JcPenney. I love that she isn’t in the same situation and she has a great figure and can wear yoga pants without unsightly bulges. So, maybe I am playing “dress up Barbie doll.” Purchases are made in moderation and the credit card gets paid off monthly. And, fortunately, my son hasn’t hit the “labels are important” stage of teenage-hood yet. He wears sport shorts from Target. 😊

My husband tells me that I put myself last on the list when it comes to the family’s wants and needs. He has his hobby – plays ice hockey in two recreational leagues. My hobbies are reading (borrow books from the library), knitting baby blankets (yarn bought with coupons from Michael’s), and watching reality tv, Netflix and Amazon. So, I spend little on me when compared to the rest of the family. And, most days, I’m ok with that. Yet, I am human and sometimes want some extravagance in my life.

My husband and I reached the 15 year mark in our marriage. We went out to dinner but didn’t do much else to celebrate. We have a family vacation planned for the summer and that was enough money flowing out at the time of our anniversary. But it’s several months later and I want something more. I have ordered an anniversary band with tiny emeralds and diamonds. Total cost will be less than $800, the equivalent of 6 or 7 Lululemon pants.

Do I feel guilty? A little. Not much. I’m worth it…

I hope you all spoil yourselves every now and then.

Billions

April 14th, 2019 at 04:49 am

Sorry for the absence from the blog...life happens and nothing seemed pertinent to blog about.

I recently discovered the show Billions on Showtime. Through my cable subscription, I can marathon watch old episodes. So far, I've completed season 1 and am half way through with season 2.

While watching, I am amazed at the display of wealth in homes, cars, clothing, food, etc. Yes, I understand that this is a tv show but it must represent how the "other half live." How do people live like that?! They must be born into living those high standards.

I am, by no means, poor. I make a good salary (probably better than most of my friends) and my husband works a part time job too. We generally live below our means as I'm able to save over $1200 per month to retirement, aggressively repay the mortgage, give to charity and still save a little to our growing liquidity (emergency fund, fun fund, overspending fund, etc.) All this is to allow me to retire young enough that I can enjoy life, be available for kids’ activities, etc.

My money guy tells me that I have more than enough money saved. Through a Monte Carlo analysis, the downside analysis shows that I will have over $1 million at age 92. That's a good predictor but how true is it? The analysis is based on current spending plus escalating increase in expenses (when I retire, I carry health insurance at a reasonable rate until death). But I still wonder if I will have enough.

I've written before that I would love to have a LV Carry All bag but I can't get myself to buy it. I would love to have a Tesla but I can't get myself to buy it. I would love to have a diamond and sapphire ring but I can't get myself to buy it. What happens if I become a spendthrift? What happens if I start being comfortable with large dollar purchases? Is it true that it is highly unlikely that my frugal personality won't change?

Is anyone familiar with the Monte Carlo analysis? Should I have comfort in it? Do you think a person's personality/standard of living is generally set and doesn't really change?

Thoughts please!