Journal Update #14: December 2013

Here are my financial details as of December 31st, 2013:

Current Savings: $26,466.79

Current Savings Rate: 39.72%


Journal December 2013

Journal Chart December 2013

Merry Christmas Readers! 🙂

I didn’t buy anyone gifts. Not a single one! My “Gifts” category for December is $0. Does that mean I win this season? Some would say no. But I want to say yes! 🙂

I’ll be honest, I felt uncomfortable. A part of me felt cheap as other people did get me gifts. The most uncomfortable was my in-laws, as they showered me with gifts as if I were there child. My girlfriend and I pre-agreed to not gift each other this year. I don’t deny it certainly can be fun giving and receiving a gift from a loved one though. I’ve always enjoyed exchanging gifts with my girlfriend the most. We seemed to know each other well enough to get a gift the other would really liked, so we were always excited and anxious to get our mystery gift. But really, most gifts I get are things I don’t need. And if I give that person something they don’t need, then we’ve both just wasted our money and contributed to consumerism and environmental degradation. I also have a high barrier to ownership and like to think about my purchases and ensure I am getting a high quality product for a great price. Money makes a good gift in that way but if you both just give each other $20, why bother? And if one gives $50, I think that could be awkward. It also lacks a certain ‘thinking of you’ appeal of a gift. Agreeing to get each other nothing can be nice as it takes some burden off your shoulder having to find a good gift. But it can make for a little less excitement. Perhaps small consumable, preferably homemade, gifts are the way to go?

In other news, my income is up this month. I was working a lot trying to get some new updates in PBXww before Christmas, as we wanted to announce an update before everyone went on holidays. I even added snow particle effects for the season to have a little fun. I’ve also recently started accumulating sign up bonuses with credit cards and have nearly 40,000 points towards travel for doing nothing, with other credit cards on their way (two applications pending, and one card in my wallet waiting for threshold spending level reached for bonus points). I think this is a great way to do things that I may not have otherwise done, or would have paid cash for, for free! It is a process, like financial independence, that you can’t do in one sitting. The effects accumulate over time, so if you’re interested you can start now and have hundreds of dollars worth of free travel in a year. There are things to be careful of though, like dinging your credit, and paying huge fees/interest so be careful. I’ll probably write a detailed post on this if I make a real vacation out of it.

I hope everyone enjoyed their celebrations!