Money Diaries

Money Diaries: Feb 21

What’s exactly is a spending goal to you? Is it to be debt-free? To build wealth? To prove that you made it the month? For sure, I am obsessed with my financial numbers, but I suspect what I really want to measure is how amazing life is.

As time passes by, I have forgotten my financial mistakes’ pain or anger, but I mourn for all the nearly crush and could have been relationships. I have forgotten the joy of owning the silk dress to a gala but remember the cold ocean’s breeze with penguins and sea lions.

But maybe that feeling is only possible because I saved for years and now have little financial worries. So yes, saving has been a success, I was lucky to start from zero instead of negative. And now I am waiting to see if “compounded savings” means I can stop fighting the daily finances battle.

February spend

While I spend a total of RM4192 in February, it feels like I only got half the value of what I spend, probably because giving and housing (a whopping 53%) is not something I can experience or control.

Giving, in part, to my brother, who is half-unemployed. RM200 for thunder squad for public speaking (a fundraising event for education).

Minimalistic CNY. No new dress, no fancy family visit gifts, no special meals for parents. Just RM200 for meals and an AngPao to my parents. On the flip side, record low AngPao for me (not because I reached my 30’s).

I had little episodes of emotional eating, and boredom eating. My grocery list is simple, but I eat a lot. Two whole air-flown trout, 8 organic chicken, vegetables, and a dozen of natural artisan soda. By the time it reaches 26th Feb, it’s 3 pints of Haagen Dazs (for RM57) to comfort my paper heart, together with 14 food deliveries, 5 Yee Sang, and 4 dinings out.

Wellness updates

I fell into the dungeons of shame when I try the push-sit-ups. The instructor gave me a basic workout plan with push-ups, and I did the homework with sit-ups for two weeks because obviously, they sound the same I wanted a flat tummy…. until we made a zoom call.

Took the water-whiskey-coffee breathing technique to change my life (the author claims).

Type InhaleExhaleWhen
Water4 counts4 countsAnytime
Whiskey4 counts8 countsTo sleep, calm down
Coffee– ignore –20 short beats ( like a sneeze)Morning , 3 pm
The breathing that can change your life

I started using the cream from Sisley that I redeem with Miles last November (it’s RM720 if I buy over the counter). I love how radiant my morning wake-up face is now. Why are these creams so expensive? 🤧

The new budget

It’s been months since I aim to keep spending below RM3500 and failed. It could be carelessness on my part, rise of Lazada app, or valid cost inflation. Who knows?

I do know my expenses are nearer to RM4000 and it is a blessing to be able to spend and be honest enough to plan according to that budget. So here’s my new monthly budget.

Giving500Holding back or radically generous? God loves a cheerful giver. – 2Cor 9
HousingRent and loan interest1050Fixed
UtilitiesInternet30 YES prepaid
Electricity40Including water too
Dining out400
Insurance300Great Eastern ILP
Personal Health products100
Beauty products200
Growth Subscription35Netflix, Scribd
MiscHousehold items200
Others210Something always pops up
March 2021 Budget

The little change will affect my FIRE plan ( And the previous RM3500 is too ideal). I have been staying on the sideline of investment and it’s a good time to buy in now to catch up on the dividends yield.


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