Monday, January 8, 2018

Year End Reports

Getting my books from the Library
So in a previous post, I mentioned that I read 68 books this year. That is probably the most books I've read in a year since I was a kid. Part of the blame goes to the fact that I was new to the whole library "thing." It's way different than when I was a kid and you went to the bookmobile and checked out 6 or 8 books. Now, I do it all online. The problem is that there is a bit of a learning curve. You can have as many as 15 books "on hold" which basically means you are on the waiting list for them. What ended up happening---before I realized you could "suspend" a hold, is the books were coming in faster than I could read them. That caused me to read MORE! At times I was frantic! Now that I've got it figured out, I won't have that pressure. I can pretty much control the speed of the books coming in easily.

My biggest motivation for using the library this year was to save money. And save money I did! $568.18 worth of books! Plus, now that you buy books electronically, you can't share them (although some older books are shareable---one time). You can share books only with all the people that share your account. In hindsight, we should have set up one account for the whole family. We didn't. Butch and I are on the same account. He's able to read the books that I've purchased for about the last 6 or 8 years now. I'm getting all of mine from the library except the few I have to purchase for book club. I don't always have time to wait for a book club book to come in. I spent $51.37 on book club books. All in all, it was a great year in the savings department. Well, until I received the year end letter from my library asking me for a donation. I felt like I needed to do that since I'm relying on the library. So actually, I guess you need to cut my savings in half after my donation! Still worth it!

You might recall that after I broke my ankle I heard about OsteoStrong. They make some pretty lofty claims about improving bone density.  I decided that I was going to have a bone density test done and then another at the end of a year. The year end report is that my bone density did NOT improve---in fact it's a little worse---but still normal for a woman my age. So here I've "wasted" $105. a month or $1260 for the year. My balance has improved, so that's something. I can't really put a dollar amount to that so I won't.

Movie Pass
Okay, so it hasn't been a year yet, but I'm paid up through December of 2018. I've already seen 14 movies since October and have completely gotten my money's worth for the entire year. I'm already in the black by 3 movies or $30.00.

Vanguard inherited IRA
When my mom died in 2010, my siblings and I inherited her IRA. We could have cashed it out. I decided to keep it. We each have a mandatory distribution every year based on our own age---not my mom's. My brother, Ronnie mentioned that a good time to take the distribution would be on our birthdays---sort of a birthday present from mom. I just got the year end report. Even with taking that withdrawal, the investment has increased by an average of 9.9% per year. My mom was really smart about finances. This one investment is worth way more than what we inherited! I'm so glad I kept it! So that's another plus for the year!

All in all, I'm pretty happy with the amount of money I've managed to save this year. Of course it won't mean "jack" once we start the kitchen renovation!

1 comment:

  1. How interesting that you figured the savings from using the library. I'm sure I saved hundreds of dollars, too . . . although we also purchase quite a few books. I typically donate books to the library and once a year I volunteer to teach the DIY class (this year in May), so I guess those count as donations, right.


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