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Archive for December, 2010

Woohoo Roth Finished

December 14th, 2010 at 05:05 pm

I sent the last payment to our Roth for 2010. We started contributing around October so we finished it in only 3 months. Pretty good! I set the account up to make consistent withdrawals for the next who knows how many years. It will withdraw $417 for the first 2 months of the quarter and $416 on the final month. It's a bit annoying that they didn't choose a number divisible by 12.

So now we are back to focusing all our extra money on the car fund. We are 33% done with the fund so we still have a ways to go. Still we are on track to have the money by the time my lease ends.

More worrying is our lack of progress on the Baby Fund. We are trying to add $10,000 to our EF to account for additional baby expenses. We need to be putting $377 away every month to make our goal of April 2011. Right now we are pulling $200 from our Wants budget to contribute (I figure having a baby is a luxury). At this rate the fund won't be finished until June 2013. I'm hoping that by putting extra money into the Car Fund we can lower our monthly allocations there and raise our monthly allocation to the Baby Fund.

If all else fails, I'll move back our start trying date in 3 month intervals (I buy a 90-day supply of BC) and start trying when we have the money.

Why Education Costs Rise So Fast

December 3rd, 2010 at 07:55 am

I just read a great post about why education costs are rising quicker than inflation and should be. Mark Warschauer is a leading researcher on laptop programs in schools. His findings usually show that computers don't matter, good teaching matters. I found the article fairly convincing.

http://papyrusnews.com/2010/12/03/why-education-costs-rise-and-why-we-can-afford-them/

Whelmed Just Right

December 1st, 2010 at 10:54 am

So DH and I have been a bit overwhelmed lately with the idea of "investing". We both have this urge to get into the investing game an buy a couple stocks. We were getting all itchy about this up until Thanksgiving weekend, at which point I realized that we were both being a bit silly. This is not the time in our lives to be investing. We are still very, very busy saving for a our many short term goals (house, car, kids, student loans), and we really shouldn't be thinking about investing. Now by investing, I don't mean retirement. That I see as another savings goal. We need to save $5000 a year to fill up one of the Roth's. Investing is setting money aside to generate supplemental income while we are still working.

So we had to lower our goals. My uncle wrote a book a couple years ago and he talked about how we need to avoid being overwhelmed or underwhelmed. We need to be whelmed just right for optimal motivation. This might involve increasing our productivity, but just as often this involves lowering our expectations to something more reasonable.

So here we go. We are going to try to lower our expectations and focus on our savings goals. We will try to be whelmed just right.