Sunday, December 3, 2023

Week 48: Miscellany

I walked 39 miles this month with my phone in my pocket. Clearly I walked a lot more than that as I only carry my phone on actual outdoor walks. There were also lots of stair climbs with a two story house again.

My back hurts less. Pilates sessions with a very good trainer is addressing the issue well. Much thanks to my son for finding this trainer who diagnoses and customizes extremely well. I like her as a person too.

So much for reducing grocery costs in November: I thought we could keep our November grocery, household, toiletries and alcohol spending similar to October. I was way off. 

Having 2 more adults to feed for a week, Hubby’s birthday dinner party for 7, and providing significant hors d’oeuvres for Thanksgiving added almost $200 to our spending for the month. Happily spent I should add as the family time was lovely and fun. Today is my local DIL’s 40th birthday party so, although my older son is sick and stayed home, my DIl is back for 2 nights. They will be gone much of December and January visiting her parents which makes these visits all the more precious. 

We still have spent less in these categories this year than last and I have lowered the budget goal a bit further for 2024.

Insurance costs and coverage: Once we decided not to switch insurance companies we took a close look at our homeowners, earthquake and excess liability policies. Raise a deductible here and get an earthquake retrofit discount there and it adds up. Plus we noticed the earthquake insurance still listed us as owning 2 homes (there was a few weeks overlap) instead of one and the homeowners insurance had not noted the recent roof replacement. 

Now I just have to go to city hall and get copies of all the permits for the property and hope there is one for updating water pipes!

Speaking of city hall: I submitted the form and documentation to get part of our city transfer tax refunded because of the retrofit. This is enough money to care about.

The county is slow: Still no word on our property tax credit for seniors who sold and bought a home in California. We are owed a discount on our property tax and submitted the form 7 months ago. To be fair, they did say it would take at least 6 months.

Our 2 year old furnace is oversized: With colder weather we have discovered that the expensive furnace the sellers put in is about 50% oversized so it was shutting down because it got too hot. Hubby found an experienced technician knowledgeable about this brand and he was able to make an adjustment to the gas flow so it works ok and doesn’t overheat. Whew. We did not want to have to buy a new furnace.

Planning for 2024: The new year definitely will see me focusing away from the house and yard. I’m starting to get excited about it!


  1. Everyone's budget for spending at the grocery store this time of the year has been blown wide open. But like you said, it's mostly for family so we don't mind so much.

  2. I was over budget on groceries last month and will more than likely be so again this month as we will have our sons home for about a week.

    God bless.


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