April had some unexpected travel expenses from the death of my brother. A few nights in a hotel and eating out triggered a few hundred dollars in travel and food expenses. I think this is why having some type of cash buffer or emergency fund is very important for those just starting out on their Frugalmaster exercises. When you live well below your means you tend to not worry about money as much and always have some extra cash just in case.
That buffer also helped me finish paying off my daughters school trip to Washington DC. The trip was $500 total and she has been helping around the house with extra chores and kid watching to help pay it back. They also stopped at Gettysburg and Flight 93 (911 crash site) Memorial.
I am not quite to the 50% mark yet but my expenses for the month where 62% of my normal income. I say normal because this month the government paid me back the taxes they had over collected. This refund is counted towards income because it was not recorded in the previous year where it was earned.
With that said my savings rate for the month jumped to a whopping 67%. This is my best month ever but I think is mostly due to my tax refund. Without it the rate would have been around 38% which is close to my average so for this year.
This extra money was saved and part was put into the 401k. I was finally eligible to put money into it when I reached 6 months with my current company. My plan is to save the full $18,000 dollars max into it. So I have adjusted my contribution rate to match that or roughly $1250 a paycheck (I am biweekly). This will leave me little extra cash with each paycheck but all the previous months this year I have saved that cash to ensure I have an adequate buffer just in case.
There were some dividend stocks purchased but I will detail that later. I am way past due for letting you all know what I have been buying over the past few months.
Dividend Family Guy