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March was a very high spend month, but I’m glad I still did quite well in regards to my finances.

It feels like I should have made more progress, but I had to remind myself that I just paid off my car in February! It feels like so long ago for some reason.

In March I continued to save for my student loans while they are in forbearance and at 0% interest, however, I also decided to make an actual payment so I could bring my total debt to an even number ($36,000).

Let’s get into the details:


I started the month of March with my official debt at $36,239.14 and ended with $36,000. However, I technically started at $35,621.32 if you consider the money I have saved to pay those loans down.

Then in March I saved an additional $367.95 for my student loans (bringing my total saved to $1,046.47) so my final debt for March would be $34,953.53.

I paid $0 in interest 😊

My current student loan balance.


Some main things to point out about my spending in March:

Sinking Funds and Roth IRA: I put $221 extra to my sinking funds ($100 to emergency fund, $50 to car/car maintenance, $50 to travel, $21 to phone) and then $100 extra to my 2020 Roth IRA. This extra money came from my stimulus check and tax refunds.

Groceries: I did go over on groceries but only because I purchased a $100 Sprouts gift card for $89.99. I didn’t actually spend $89.99 on groceries though. The gift card will roll over into next month and save me some!

Food out: I went $23.58 over budget on food which is unusual for me. This was because a few times I also bought food/coffee for my sister and/or boyfriend. It’s no problem though.

Car Insurance: I have my own car insurance now! I went with Geico and paid <$600 for 6 months.

Health/Beauty: I went WAY over budget here because I ended up purchasing the bulk of my new skin care even though I said I would wait until April (there was a sale!!).

Business: I renewed my hosting for both of my websites for 2 years which is why this is so high! I got a pretty good deal though.

Personal: I also went over budget in personal. I bought 2 pairs of shoes, new sports bras, new bed sheets, and a thrifted shirt and pair of shorts.

TSSF Program: This was a HUGE expense and I’ve decided I don’t want to talk about it much. I’m just doing it. It’s an investment in myself and in my future and we’ll see what happens!


Full-time job (microbiologist): $4,937
Google AdSense (ad revenue from YouTube): $625.46
Mediavine (display ads on LivinglikeLeila): $354.14
Financial Coaching: $150
Teachable: $141.38
Buy Me a Coffee: $140.74
Affiliates: $110

BOA Cash Back: $17.91
Chase Flex Rewards: $325.85
Federal Tax Refund: $390
State Tax Refund: $639
Stimulus Check: $1,400

Business Income: $1,521.72
Extra Income: $2,772.76
Pre-tax total = $9,231.48

Net Worth

As of March 31st, 2021 my net worth is -$13,801.41!!! So exciting!

Roth IRA: $6,017.14
M1 Invest: $924.72 (mostly from referrals!)

Sinking Funds:

  • Taxes = $3,673.81
  • Emergency Savings = $4,476.95
  • Gifts = $332.54
  • Medical/Dental = $351.76
  • Car maintenance = $436.06
  • Travel = $321.37
  • Personal spending = $0.19
  • FinCon = $375.55
  • Phone = $71.03

Credit Score

My VantageScore via Credit Karma is at 759. It went down 27 points because I opened a new credit card, but mostly because I charged the big purchase above ($1,897) right before the statement date. So even though I paid it off a couple days later it was already submitted to the credit bureaus. No big deal though!

Overall Updates

I am adding a sinking fund for car insurance

As I mentioned above, I now have my own car insurance! For now it’s costing me $577 for 6 months so I will be saving $120/month to a car insurance sinking fund. I plan on taking a defensive driver course at some point to decrease my premium as well.

I earned over $1K online again

3 months in a row!! YAY!! Extra cash helps SO much for saving and paying off debt. I can’t express my gratitude enough.

I will no longer be saving to my personal sinking fund

I keep going over budget each month in personal spending and there is just no point in having it anymore. I’m not planning on spending more, just don’t want the sinking fund.

March Goals Update

  • Put at least $600 to student loan savings CHECK, $607
  • Get my own car insurance CHECK
  • Make over $1,000 online CHECK

Money Goals for April

  • Put at least $1,500 to student loan savings
  • Make over $1,000 online