May 2021 in review: Money + Life

I’m going to start with a quote from my last blog post, which was in NOVEMBER:

It’s NOVEMBER and I have no idea what’s going on with my money.  I thought about going back month by month to take a look at my expenses… to be honest, I still think it would be a healthy exercise. But since there’s a pandemic and life as we know it is no longer a thing, I’m not even going to try and stress myself out by going back and figuring out why I feel like I have JUST ENOUGH to pay our credit card bill every month. 

Hilariously, nothing has changed.

I actually have a fair amount of ~ guilt ~ because I really should have saved a lot more money, but I didn’t. I don’t know why. I mean, I do know why. Honestly, saving money is hard for me. It’s either an obsession where I cut out every last bit of extra spending, or never log into personal capital again and swipe my credit card like I make twice as much as I actually do. Balance is hard. Really hard.

I’m documenting this here to get myself back on track though. I’ve made decent progress but I want to close out the year with $110k net worth inshaAllah

May 2021October 2020
Net Worth Total$67,523$39,076

What is going on?

The year has been filled with many one-time expenses. You know, like,

  • Buying and registering a new car in cash ($3K lent to Mr. H, $1k towards registration)
  • A $2500 10 day quarantine with my brother (listen. it is what it is.)
  • Lent $1500 to a friend
  • Ramadan donations + zakat + eid gifts
  • And I’m $2500 into a 10 day trip to California.

Wowza. That’s a lot. Plus I’m hoping to get paid back for a few of these things which should add about $5K to my net worth. How nice would it be to close out the year with the elusive $100k though? Sometimes I wonder if I would have reached the goal anyway, without actually trying and investing every month. Most of me thinks not – especially based on my recent spending patterns where I’ve loosened the reigns on the credit card and our bill is often in the $3-6K/month range.

I really want to get more diligent about tracking expenses. In May, we spent about $800 at restaurants and honestly that is way higher than I expected. When I finally took a look at May’s expenses, I almost panicked. And yet, at the same time, it still seems like many things are unavoidable. It has already made me more careful for June though.

After seeing the impact of Ramadan and Eid (I had to take money out of savings to pay our zakat)… I now see why people have sinking funds. It would be really nice to have a way to do that without actually having to do it myself 😂 I truly wish Bank of America had better tools for this kind of stuff.

The Life Part: 

I also want to document some general life wins, because it’s easy to forget all the good things that happened: 

Some wins from May: 

  • Baked more cakes!! This month I worked on a cake topped with buttercream peonies that I am especially proud of.
  • Acquired a lot of baking stuff, like new pans, 50 lbs of cake flour, and three new cookbooks.
  • We celebrated Eid! We also went to the masjid for taraweeh more than any other year since we’ve been married.
  • Tried a new bakery! I had a spinach and feta croissant and it.was.good.
  • My family visited! Mr. H and I had dinner on the roof of the mall parking garage, and we also tried a new fried chicken sandie spot in Baltimore with my sister.
  • My cousin sent levain cookies! It was such a nice surprise and so so good
  • I acquired a new monstera minima, some pepper plants, new tomato plants, and an eggplant…plant . It is *very* exciting watching things grow.
  • I’ve been working out consistently again!!! This is one of my biggest accomplishments by far. I had to take a break during Ramadan, and surprisingly, I still managed 9 workouts after Eid in the last two weeks of May.

And that’s it! Until next time!

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