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March (and February) Wrap Up

April 5, 2018

I skipped last month’s update, although I did update my net worth spreadsheet.  This update will have to cover both months.

Net Worth / Money:

Our net worth was up 1.4% at the time of the spreadsheet update, although stocks fell the day after.  I don’t keep a close eye on them.  In February, we had a 0.3% gain, just barely increasing.

One reason our net worth went up this month is that our tax refunds showed up!  We’ll $5-8k to a mortgage pre-payment.  The rest is just hanging around waiting for me to decide what to do with it.  Yes, our total (fed+state) refund was more than $8k, although not a lot more.

Spending:

I’m way behind on tracking our spending, which is a somewhat manual process.  I was doing well just going through it once per a week.  So, nothing to report this month, but I’ll get caught up soon!  This was another reason why I didn’t do my wrap-up last month – I kept thinking I was just about to get caught up.

House Projects:

T spent lots of time outside this month!  Not only is the patio FINALLY mostly rebuilt (edging still needs work), he built a small rock wall to reduce erosion on the portion of our hill that didn’t already have a retaining wall.  The rock delivery was about $400.  He then moved on to repairing a small portion of our fence that has been threatening to topple over since we moved in.  The neighbor offered to pay for half of the material costs, so our total cost will be about $350.  (The neighbor was initially grumpy about the whole fence situation until she realized that we were offering to replace it and that the issues she was complaining about were either wrong or on her side of the fence.)

I’m excited for our intended late spring plan to pull out the really terrible hedges in front and put in some more natural landscaping.  T is hoping to paint the exterior (or get it painted).

I think the other main thing for this year/summer is decluttering and donating some furniture and things that have been stowed in the garage for a while.  It is just one of those chores that you NEVER feel like doing…

Work:  

I was pulled into a new short-term effort, which could lead to something long term.  The near term work is mostly a bunch of somewhat tedious project management work to help set up a potential project.  But if the project materializes, it will be a lot of fun.  The future project has a low/medium probability of materializing, and wouldn’t start for about a year – but it was something I couldn’t say no to.

My normal work stuff has been okay – but only okay.  I didn’t travel in February or March for work, but will be back to Colorado in April for a week.  I think this is good.  I’m feeling very insecure about my ability to contribute high quality work to this effort at this stage of the project. It is also just hard to be so separate from the team physically. I talked with my lead there, and he is committed to keeping me on board.  I’m grateful for that, but I want to be sure I’m an asset to the team.

Life/Misc:  

We just took a look at our summer travel schedules, and it is pretty bleak.  T has a 2 week trip to Europe, and I don’t think I’ll try to tag along as usual… even though I am always a bit tempted!  Immediately following, he’ll have a week in an out-of-state location for the normal big summer conference in his area.  Later in the summer, I’ll be traveling (domestically) pretty much every week for about a 6 week period for work.  T can come with whenever we can get a dog-sitter, but it is still going to be a big disruption to our routine.

This is all without any actual vacations just for fun!  We haven’t decided what, if anything, we’ll be doing for vacation this summer!

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. April 5, 2018 11:47 pm

    Wow, you travel a lot for work, do you enjoy it?

    • April 6, 2018 7:10 am

      Yes and no. It is nice to be home, thats for sure!

      This summer is unusual – the 6 week thing is for something that I’m really really excited about, and travel like that probably won’t happen again for years and years. The shorter trips are a nice change of pace and I get a lot done with the people I’m visiting – but I’d generally rather stay home.

      My husband’s travel schedule this summer is also unusual – bit more than typical, and all crunched together.

  2. April 6, 2018 10:47 am

    Glad everything worked out with your neighbor regarding the fence situation. I always feel like anything where I need my own neighbor’s approval feels so tenuous and charged for no good reason.

    That’s a lot of work travel all at once. Are you going to different locations or just one place back and forth?

    • April 7, 2018 12:18 pm

      Same place back and forth!

      I think the neighbor had some pre-existing resentment about the fence (or our whole yard/landscaping in general) from the previous owners. But my husband is really good at dealing with people nicely (and we were willing to pay for it 100% anyway), so I think she relaxed once they started talking. We had barely ever talked to her before.

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