October 2016 Budget

One of the best things about working 15 straight days is you don’t have much time to spend money.  Not surprisingly this was one of our best months ever with only $2881.88 in monthly expenses, saving $1191.87 off our monthly budget. It’s not hard to figure out why.  Minimal campground costs, low fuel costs and lack of entertainment costs helped to financially make this a great month for us. So if you are really struggling to stay on budget, work a ton of 12 hour days straight.  That should help 🙂



Campground Fees – Only two days as we traveled to our next work kamping job.

Groceries – I am really happy with this category, because despite the fact that we purchased lots of prepared foods and didn’t cook many meals, overall we were $38 under budget. As you know this category has been a major challenge for us, so maybe eating canned soup and deli chicken every day is the way to keep these costs in line!

Dining Out – Despite the $119 overage in this category I am really happy with it.  $73 was one big splurge meal at the end to celebrate finishing the harvest and the rest was pretty reasonable.  It was a HUGE temptation to not eat out constantly since we were so tired and working, and if we had eaten every day at the food truck at the yard this would have been much worse.  Considering the circumstances, I think we did great here.  Plus it was offset by Entertainment where we spent a whopping $2.28. (I am pretty sure that was an ITunes song.  I love the show The Voice and occasionally just have to download a song from there. 

Truck Fuel – Individual fill ups were somewhat expensive in Montana, but there were few of them as all we did was drive back and forth to work every day. $178.20 is really a job expense in my mind, although after talking to our tax accountant, I don’t believe we can claim it on our taxes.  The most conservative view is going back and forth to a job from where the RV is parked is not deductible.  Traveling within the job work hours would be (ie: if we had been sent to another location during our work day), but a simple back and forth is not. I am not a tax accountant though and you may take another approach, but personally we tend to be pretty conservative on how we file.  I only mention it because I had some confusion on this issue, but of course talk to your accountant about your unique situation. 

Clothing – We spent $90.62 on last minute clothing items for the harvest.  This could have been avoided if we would have known in advance what clothing was needed, but since it was almost all thrift store I don’t feel bad.  I may have also slipped in a few recipe books as well, which really should go into entertainment, but I’m not going to break that all out. 

Home Repair – We crushed this category, coming in $134 under budget because again who has time for home repair when you are working 12 hour days.  I will say we have developed quite a list of items that need to be addressed, but have decided to use our extended warranty and address these items in bulk once we are in New Braunfels. 

Overall, it was a great budget month, which is another plus for working the beet harvest. What’s interesting to me is we have demonstrated we can live on less than $3K a month, but seem unable to consistently achieve that result.  Why is that so important?  Well if we can comfortably live on less, we can work less.  We are not alone in this struggle, by the way.  Most people don’t just flip a switch and instantly become frugal.  It obviously can be done of course, we met numerous kids who make their beet harvest money last for several months, what is still to be determined is whether we are willing to consistently do it. 

Camper Chronicles is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, a program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com. We very much appreciate any purchase you make via our website links.  There is no additional cost to you and helps support our blog. Thank you.   Search Amazon.com here

September Budget 2016

I didn’t include revenue numbers this month because we haven’t actually gotten a paycheck yet from the beet harvest.  Once the beet harvest is complete I will do a final accounting of the money spent here and money made.  It was a rough month, one of the highest we have had with $5,313 spent.  Details are below and this is going to be short and to the point, because it’s 3am and I am very tired.




















Campground Fees – Under budget at $292 because part of the month was covered by Alaska Work Kamping and part was covered by Beet Harvest work kamping. 

Groceries – Over by $259.  Part Alaska, part Canada, part stocking up in advance of harvest, part we just buy to much food.  

Dining Out – Over a little bit but not bad.  Offset by spending $0 in entertainment this month. 

Memberships Spent $177 which was our $80 America the Beautiful pass for National Parks and my very first AARP membership.  America the Beautiful more than paid for itself last year and I bought the AARP because people talk about the discounts they get.  Plus why not…if you turn 50 …own it!!

Truck Fuel Over by $649.  Alaska, Alaska, Alaska.  I can’t stress enough, when you are thinking about how much it will cost factor in the going and returning. 

Truck Maintenance – Alignment repairs for $424 one of the few things not covered under our warranty and caused by Alaska roads.  Almost everyone I know who goes has some sort of related truck/RV expense so again factor that in. 

Clothing – The $199 was directly attributable to beet harvest clothing.  Boots for me and long johns for both of us.  Not everything will be found at thrift stores. I will factor that cost into that analysis when the revenue all comes in. 

Gift/Postage – We sent a large gift to my nephew and it ended up costing about $150 in postage and shipping materials all together. Ever start something thinking it wouldn’t cost that much then it ends up costing a bunch more than you though?  Well that’s what happened.  What can I say, it’s expensive shipping a large caribou skull. Who knew??

Home Maintenance – Went over by about $77.  Not sure why.  To tired to figure it out.


Camper Chronicles is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, a program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com. We very much appreciate any purchase you make via our website links as they support our blog. Thank you.   Search Amazon.com here