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Monday, October 5

My Frugal Miser - September Expenses: $8,273

I wasn't as gluttonous as the numbers suggest.  Some of my September spending was in the form of gift cards I have yet to use.  MyPoints had promotions with its Swappable site, so I bought quite a few gift cards, affecting the areas of Vacation, Food, Home Repair and Clothing.   Similarly, I bought fuel gift cards to take advantage of Chase Freedom's expiring 5% cash back on fuel offer.   I also purchased a $500 Carnival gift card at Winn-Dixie to earn Fuel Rewards.   I read that you can apply the gift card to your onboard account when you cruise and then cash out the positive balance, so I'm going to give this a whirl.  The only major expense last month was the purchase of our kitchen counter tops, which was nearly $3,000.  

One category to point out is Vacation spending.  Remove the $500 Carnival gift card, and I only spent $540 on vacationing last month.  This includes four round trip flights:  2 to Denver last month, and 2 to Las Vegas later this month.  Frontier and Spirit have had aggressive sales.  We both flew to Denver and back for under $100, and our round trip flights to Las Vegas were just $122 each.

October looks like a more frugal month.  We will work a hospitality job in Chicago during one whole week, and all our expenses are paid for that.  I have enough gas cards to cover all the driving I do this month.

September Expenses:  $8,273

$1,963 Auto ($539 gas, $455 depreciation, $968 Rideshare Car depreciation)
$45 Bank Fees
$100 Clothing
$0 Computer
$144 Entertainment (movies, gambling, alcohol)
$304 Food
$0 Gifts Given
$3,979 Household/Housing/Home Repair
$141 Health and Dental Insurance
$0 Investment Expense
$162 Interest Expense
$0 Medical/Dental
$6 Miscellaneous
$0 Personal Care
$0 Subscriptions
$0 Taxes
$124 Uber/Lyft Expenses (excluding fuel and depreciation)
$264 Utilities
$1,040 Vacation and Recreation

September Expenses, Excluding Vacation and Home Repairs:  $4,120


  1. Your expenses are pretty good when you consider a lot of those expenses are business expenses rather than personal expenses.

    We're going to be in Las Vegas later this month too. We're not arriving until Halloween night so I'm guessing you'll be gone by then. I've come up with a new plan for where I'll be living this winter. I'll talk to you about it once things are a little more definite.

    1. Andy,
      I'm returning to Vegas on 11/4 for the AAII conference. When do you leave? Can't wait to hear about the new plan.

  2. You have the travel hacking down to a science. Wow. You're not a miser - you are smart!!!!!

    1. Thanks, ElleX. I'm addicted to finding deals, and you are correct: you don't have to be a miser to live a frugal but meaningful life.