Thursday, December 20, 2007

Where I'm coming from

I am biting at the bit. I know my year end bonus hits tonight and I am anxious as a pimple faced 8th grader writing their first love letter!

I got divorced a little over a year ago. It has screwed up my finances completely. Long story short, I caved on way too much. Of course, who out there is divorced and thinks they didn't get screwed? I make more money than my ex-husband so when it came time to figure out who paid what and what would happen with child care, it made my financial picture grim. I pay all of the child care costs ($110.85 a week for 3 days) and get $58 a month in child support.

I work for a great company and get a sizeable year end bonus based on performance and how the company does. This year it was about 18% of my total salary, or $14,580. That is NICE. The down side is that when we figured child support, the lawyer insisted that I had to figure in that bonus as annual income as there was precedent that it would continue. Let's hope it does. If not, oh there will be hosing of epic proportions.

What does that matter? Well, the court figured my total income (which includes the bonus) over 12 months. It means I need to make that bonus last all year. It's very hard to do. It forces me tohave to drive down my monthly expenses in order to have enough money to pay my bills with my weekly paycheck.

I do this buy prepaying for as many as my regular monthly bills as I can. All utilities, internet, phone, etc. I want to see if I can prepay my car for the year and see if I can save the interest. That seems worth exploring. I am one of those people that gets immense enjoyment from this end of year process. I love knowing things are paid and done. I am anxious to know what the net pay is after all the taxes and retirement come out so I know what I can pay. It's like Wheel of Fortune in the old days when you got to go shopping at the end. Only no ceramic dalmations for me. Just electric bills...

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