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Updates and Links

August 1, 2016

Money Updates:

Our net worth is up 3% for the month, 27% for the year.  I look forward to the days when a 27% yearly increase would be unrealistic due to having such a high net worth.

My 401k is maxed for the year.  I generally dollar cost average this, but I finished up early this year (no particular reason).  The remaining summer money plan is to set aside property taxes for December and April, then send off a big mortgage prepayment chunk.   I’m hoping to get to $25k this year, and it is looking good. The other plan is to possibly buy patio furniture at the end of the season (now).

I bought a new iPhone after mine died completely while on vacation through no fault of my own (crashed, couldn’t be restored). I was a bit annoyed by the crash, but also feel relieved that we can buy our way out of the problem.  I also was happy to discover Apple has an iPhone SE, which is basically upgraded tech without the latest body/styling at a price point much lower than the latest-and-greatest.  Not everyone wants to pay to be on the cutting edge.

We are owed a lot in reimbursements for work expenses right now.   I’m owed about $2k for 2 different trips, and T is owed something like $4k for a computer and a work trip.  Work aside, we have an additional $4k due to us for tax benefits of the earthquake retrofitting work we had done last month.  That could take another 2 months to process.

We are still talking about what we’ll do for cars once Volkswagen finalizes details, but it appears we’ll have about $20k to put towards a vehicle.  We have a long list of possibilities, but I honestly loved my VW Golf Diesel hatchback.  I so wish it wasn’t all a scam.

Work Updates:

Things are still going well, and I’m mostly happy.

I’m traveling about 25% of the time, which is a comfortable amount of work travel for me.   I enjoy the places I go, but I miss my husband, my dog and my home life when I’m away.  They miss me too.  T does dog duty when I’m gone, but hasn’t had to hire the dog walker at all this summer.

There are occasional people and politics with the team in Colorado that irritate me, but my lead is super great. If I can keep my focus on what he thinks, I stay mostly happy.  I trust that he has my back and will deflect politics, so I can refrain from getting too emotionally engaged with petty issues. He’s definitely got my respect, and we work well together. If I was working for anyone else there, I would have quit the project and found something else to do long ago.

My secondary role on the project is less interesting , and I worry that means I’ve not been doing a good job at it. A conversation with the lead for that project is in order to make sure we are on the same page.  If I’m not adding enough value to his team, I don’t want to be in the way. I’m worried that I either need to make more time for it (hard to do), or at least manage expectations.

My other project has been slightly back-burnered  (in my mind) due to funding delays, but it is finally ramping up… and it is super exciting!  I think I’m going to the East Coast for this next month, which is my least favorite region – but I might try to explore it just a little bit while I’m there.  We’ll see.

I had my performance review, which was silly, but went well.  Maybe I’ll write more on it later, and explain why it is silly.

A Few Links:

What Hillary meant to say. “This definitely isn’t sexism. Sexism would be if we just went up to women and said ‘You can’t do that because you’re a woman.’ We know not to do that any more. It’s gauche. But that doesn’t mean there’s not ALWAYS SOMETHING SLIGHTLY THE MATTER with the way women do things.”
“I never had a dream. A dream is just a distraction for your mind, when your mind could be pondering common-sense solutions to problems. I had a goal.”

Terrance Tao on Trump (a few months old).

How Trump uses your brain against you.

A thoughtful article about the individual focus on healthy living/self-care in a word with so many problems. “The harder, duller work of self-care is about the everyday, impossible effort of getting up and getting through your life in a world that would prefer you cowed and compliant. A world whose abusive logic wants you to see no structural problems, but only problems with yourself, or with those more marginalized and vulnerable than you are. Real love, the kind that soothes and lasts, is not a feeling, but a verb, an action. It’s about what you do for another person over the course of days and weeks and years, the work put in to care and cathexis. That’s the kind of love we’re terribly bad at giving ourselves, especially on the left. […] Caring for oneself and one’s friends in a world of prejudice is not an optional part of the struggle—in many ways, it is the struggle.”

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. yuppiemillennial permalink
    August 2, 2016 5:03 am

    If you end up northward, New England is gorgeous this time of year and through Oct/Nov (she says completely unbiased…).

  2. August 2, 2016 10:04 am

    I’m surprised I’m now forecasting a 33% increase this year. I find that as my net worth has increased, it is less in my control how it grows and so sometimes it grows more than I expect. I haven’t been making any extra mortgage prepayments, but I’m already so far into the amortization that my required payment pays off about 7% of the current balance on its own, which is nice.

    Yay for maxing out your 401(k) early! I love being doing with it early and checking it off the list.

  3. August 2, 2016 11:02 am

    Yay for maxing your 401(k)! I’m trying to find a good replacement for mine since it looks like we still won’t get one this year either and it’s frustrating my investing and retirement ambitions.

    I didn’t realize you were traveling as much as 25% but glad it’s working out for you all. It’s hard to be away from the family, though, isn’t it? Even before JuggerBaby I’d miss PiC and the dogs a TON.

    How are you liking the new phone? I don’t know if you saw my reply to your question the other day but I hope it’s a good fit.

    • August 2, 2016 11:24 am

      Yeah, it has pretty much been 1 week per a month of travel. I mostly have flexibility to set my schedule, which helps out. The extra miles and hotel rewards have been useful as well. I could probably space it out a little more, but I get a lot done when I travel and get too out-of-synch if I don’t go on a regular basis. The worst times are when T also travels, because we stagger our trips to avoid needing dog-care. We’ll see how it goes this fall.

      It is a a lot like my previous phone (same form factor, same OS), so no complaints! The fingerprint ID is nice, and the new camera. I’m annoyed that I had to replace my previous phone since I had no desire to upgrade… that aside, I do like it.

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