We did better than I thought this month with $3556 in expenses. We also received our first paychecks which brought in $1640 in revenue leaving a monthly deficit of $1917. I was very happy to see though that our net cash flow YTD is $967.22. This does not include the week in Vegas which we treated as a vacation and used savings to pay for. The numbers tell a pretty good story. We are breaking even so far this year, but to stay on pace this summer we will need to sock away enough for the month of down time in October. We also have scheduled a $3500 Mor-Ryde upgrade in October, but we are working Amazon in November and December to help recover some of those costs. I’m pretty excited though because I would have bet money we would be in a negative cash flow position once we received our first pay checks. The detail of the month is listed below.
Campground Fees – Just a little bit at the beginning of the month as we traveled here. We kept those costs lower by boondocking and using Passport America.
Groceries – We went over by about $20 overall in this category. We always have a bit of a spike when we move to a new area as we learn the grocery stores, but some great advice and Winco really helped us out here. Love, love that grocery store. You’ll also notice our alcohol bill is back to $0 now that we are no longer camping with friends. Just saying 🙂
Dining Out – We went over by $55 which was pretty good considering the desire to try new restaurants in the area. We held each other accountable in this category and avoided the urge to get fast food. This was definitely helped by the fact that the local grocery store has a fantastic 10-piece chicken meal for $6.99 and I got that twice to give myself something fast to eat on long work days. Lee also took advantage of the freezer we have access to for stocking up on frozen meals, something we rarely have the freezer space for in our rig.
Internet – Hooray the new pricing kicked in and we are $216 under the previous budgeted amount. I will change the budget next month going forward but wanted to show what a game changer that has been. And for the record we are thrilled with our unlimited data plan with AT&T. Unlike many of our friends on Verizon plans we have had minimal throttling and only occasionally during peak period run into network management issues. Super happy about that and yes Lee super happy is the right term in this case.
Memberships – Lee slipped in a $195 annual fee for the American Express Gold Card. I really wanted to talk about that this year because I really think AmEx blue is a better choice for us, but he really likes having a Gold Card.
Truck Fuel – Part of our $39 was travel, part was long car rides when we first got here, but gas is very expensive here. That being said he discovered a 50 cent per gallon variance in the diesel price on the main road in Estacada versus the gas station up the hill. $2.34 versus $2.89 is nothing to sneeze at and reinforces the need to bargain shop even when you are in rural areas.
Clothing – We went over in this category by $106 mainly because we bought raincoats for work (a necessity here) and Lee had to buy a new pair of hiking shoes from REI for $89 because the soles separated. Those shoes were totally worth it though and I don’t mind spending the money on those ever.
Miscellaneous – We broke down and bought a mount for a motor for our Sea Eagle Kayak. We were able to get a used one which helped with the cost and the motor itself was purchased in June. This was a big topic of discussion, but at the end of the day we like rivers much more than lakes and since we don’t have two vehicles (and our attempt to find companies to transport have not worked) we decided to go ahead and bite the bullet. Hopefully this will lead to using the Sea Eagle more in the future, especially since we are living next to this beautiful river, but if not we might end up selling what we have. It takes up space we could always use, but we are finding we can only use it when we are with other friends. Will let you know how that goes.
Good month and good year to date numbers. The cost of living here is pretty reasonable all things considered and my list of summer activities are almost all nature related. I may end up spending a ton of money on farmer’s markets though. I stopped at my first one today and the local produce is amazing!! I’ll blow my budget any day of the week on fresh fruits and vegetables though!
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Or you can check out our recipe book filled with 80 real recipes we have cooked in our RV and taste tested by Lee himself. The cookbook specializes in recipes that have a limited number of ingredients, without sacrificing flavor and is organized into categories that matter to full time RVers such as Happy Hours, Travel Days, and Pot Lucks You can preview the kindle version on Amazon or the Apple version on Itunes. It is also available in paperback.