Tag: Ford Taurus

A Cold Tax Season is Here

February 06, 2018

Hey Everyone,

Looks like some groundhog saw his shadow so we are getting another 6 weeks of winter. Living in Reno, NV we either get Winter or Summer, there is no in between, not really.  So I guess we are just going to be colder a little longer than usual. Others out there might have a different take on that with a foot (or two….eeek!!) of snow pelting down on them.

Also, while it is cold it is also tax season. I know many people who absolutely dread doing their taxes and wait until the very last day, Tuesday, April 17. In exactly 70 days.  Please, do not procrastinate. I beg you. If you owe something, better to get it over with and pay than to accrue interest. The government doesn’t mess around with people owing money.

Yesterday, instead of going for my scheduled 3 miles run Husband and I buckled down and submitted our 2017 taxes. It took us about a total of an hour doing it together. Over the last 5 tax seasons, we’ve gotten into a pretty good rhythm of how we do everything. During the year itself if there are any medical bills, major expenses (car for the 2017 year for us), etc. we immediately put it in the tax years file in our cabinet. Then when we’ve received our very last document needed to file (for 2016 and 2017 there were more documents needed than usual due to job changes, vehicle changes, and benefits added) we knock it out of the park in less than an hour.

Everyone has different experiences with filing. The first year Husband and I were together I was very impatient, nervous, sleep deprived (having a newborn, and also working swing shift with a full school schedule) so I just started working on it without him. Ended up royally messing everything up so Husband came to my rescue like the knight he is, and fixed everything. Since then I’ll read him the numbers while he puts them into the computer. I learned my lesson.

Now, some people may think of the money being returned by the IRS as a bonus and a reason to go on a spending spree. Probably not a good idea. The idea of having the freedom to buy what you wish not having to dream about it is such a temptation. I understand.

Instead of doing that once Husband and I find out how much of a return we are getting we break it down into a budget. Making sure that we take into account what our living budget is going to look like during the next year. Putting things in the order of importance for our survival. It wouldn’t be very good if we used our entire return to book an all expense paid vacation to Walt Disney World so than when we return we are in the same situation we were when we left.

The management of the money is going to be broken down a little differently this year than last year because of Husband losing his GI Bill in a couple of months so we need to plan for that, while we wouldn’t normally because he would be working a steady job.

First: Replenish our emergency fund

Second: Put aside 2-3 months of rent

Third: Pay off the rest of Monster’s surgery bill.

Fourth: Pay off a low balanced credit card

Fifth: $50 for Dinner

These are our priorities this year. I know that this will look different for everyone but to give you an idea. While I did say that it isn’t recommended that you go crazy and spend it all on a brand new, unnecessary television, or the latest iPhone you could. It’s your money. Be responsible.

That being said every year husband and I budget out the last $50 to go on a date. It’s something simple that works for both of us so that we can do something “fun” together.

See you on the other side

 

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Car Update

January 04, 2018

Hey Everyone,

So in September, I was in a car accident. Both my boys were in their car seats. Everyone involved was okay. Thank goodness. I couldn’t imagine what would have happened if they had been hurt. It was only the car that was totaled.

What happened was it was during evening rush hour and we were on our way to the gym to do swim lessons and my training. Everything was stop and go, and the vehicle in front of me stopped suddenly and well. . . the car didn’t exactly stop at the same time. The other person’s vehicle barely had a scratch on it, the bumper came off. And they were super nice and understanding.

We couldn’t drive the car safely anymore. Since Husband had been with his brother at the time (BIL1), BIL1 drove both of them to the accident and so that Husband could drive the car straight to our house until we could find an alternate solution for the vehicle.

Over the next day or so Husband and I were very upset with what had happened because we couldn’t afford to replace the vehicle, make a down payment or make monthly payments, or so we thought.

I called my friend, Mediocre Supermom, and her husband,  Mr. Smith to see what the best options would be for a car replacement. Husband and I know almost nothing about cars and we’re not going to go to Husbands parents for help. I’ve known Mr. Smith since I was like 6 years old, he’s like an older, bigger protective brother so I trust him to help us find a vehicle.

In the end, we got the same exact color, make, model, year and mileage as our old one. I know, super original, but like I said, we know almost nothing about cars and knew we couldn’t afford to have a large monthly car payment so we went back to what we knew, Ford Taurus.

Mediocre Supermom and Mr. Smith loaned us the down payment, which we are paying back to them in monthly installments. The vehicle loan amount came out to be reasonable monthly installments with low % interest, $117 for 36 months at 3.5% interest. And since I constructed my spreadsheet in Excel for my bi-weekly paychecks I was able to calculate what we could do to pay everything down as fast as possible in 2018. It is expected that we are finished paying off Mediocre Supermom and Mr. Smith in February and finish paying off the vehicle in May.

Next time we need to get a new vehicle, we are going to get a large down payment and research what safety features we want to be included. Because while this is a great vehicle. 2005 is getting a little older and so maybe we can upgrade to 2015 model, that fits in with our budget, and not have it be out of desperation to get a replacement.

I am so grateful for having amazing friends. We wouldn’t be able to make it without their friendship and support. Especially on this crazy journey.

See you on the other Side.