Chronicles Of A Father With Cents

Simple Life. Personal Finance. Family

Expense Chronicles – September 2017

Expense Chronicles

Welcome to the September edition of the Expense Chronicles.  If you haven’t seen my past expense chronicles, here are July and August.

This is a monthly check up of my expenses and it is broken up into categories.  Few things to note:

  • We are a one car family so our gas and car insurance charges are all for our Toyota Prius C
  • I do have complimentary breakfast and lunch at my work. If the food is really good that day I usually take a box to go for dinner.  But on some occasions I bring my own lunch if I don’t feel like eating the food from work
  • We mainly use credit cards for our purchases and pay it in full each month.

With that said, here is how our expenses went in September.

Car Insurance  $        82.78
Gas  $        43.93
Groceries  $     284.89
Restaurants/Fast Food  $        20.87
Retail Shopping  $        27.35
Mobile Phone  $        80.75
Electricity  $        22.43
Internet  $        50.00
Rent  $  1,000.00
Total  $  1,613.00

Here is a breakdown of each category:

Rent: $1000.00

Mobile Phone: $80.75

Internet: $50.00

Electricity: $22.43

These four are fixed costs for every month(electricity ranges between $20-$25 monthly).  If you want a breakdown of these four categories you can check out my July Expense Report

Car Insurance – $82.78

This is our usual cost for car insurance after an unusual occurrence last month where my month insurance went down after our MetroMile device stopped working.  After we received a new tracking device, we drove about the same amount on miles and thus got about the same monthly charge from MetroMile.  For those unfamiliar with them, MetroMile is a pay-per-mile car insurance company. They track the miles by using a tracking device that you plug into your car.

We did cross the Golden Gate Bridge for a birthday party at the Bay Area Discovery Museum in Sausalito but since it was the first exit after the GGB and it was about a 15 minute drive from our place in the Outer Sunset, it did not create a dent in our mileage.


Almond Biscotti.  All gone!!

Groceries – $284.89

We got our usual groceries along with a few sale items and our six month splurge on toilet paper at Costco.  The bulk amount of toilet paper at Costco lasts us about six months and it was almost up.  That and we had about six rolls left at home so we figured to get it.

The dark chocolate biscotti was on sale at Costco so we bought about four containers that had 50 biscotti each throughout September.  We cleaned out all four towards the end of the month.  I would bring 3 of them a day to work and got tempted to grab a few more at home after we were done with dinner.  Mother with Cents got her share too by eating a good amount of them.


Homemade fish tacos

Also bought fish sticks that were on sale as well and along with some corn tortillas, cabbage and tomatoes from Trader Joe’s we turned it into some fish tacos:

Gas – $43.93

Gas prices went up here in the Bay Area.  We did pay around $2.65 a gallon for a while and it shot up to $2.95.  So our usual gas expenses went up a bit because of this but not too much.

Restaurants/Fast Food – $20.87

In ‘N Out Burger and Domino’s.  Those two places are the why we have expenses on this category.  We frequent these two places the most when we go out to eat and why not. In ‘N Out can be pretty addicting with their delicious Double Doubles, natural fries and their ridiculous secret menu that includes their 4×4 burger(four beef patties and four slices of cheese and animal fries(fries with grilled onions, In N Out’s secret sauce and melted cheese).  I usually get the double double with grilled onions and Mother with Cents gets the cheeseburger with grilled onions.

Domino’s always had coupons and we took advantage of one of them by ordering a large pizza for $7.99.

They have improved their pizza quality the last five years which is why when we crave for some pizza, we always think of getting it from Domino’s. Plus there is one nearby our place so I can stop by and pick it up without the hassle of charging us extra for delivery fees


Large pizza from Domino’s. Jalapeños, Mushrooms and Sausage

Retail Shopping – $27.37

Mother with Cents took over the category as we went to Forever 21 where she bought some leggings and a cap.  We also went to Michael’s(craft store) and bought a tub of beads for a crafting project she’s doing for Baby with Cents.

We used the two $15 gift cards we got from Target for buying our diapers last month and bought a birthday gift for my friend’s four year old son for that birthday party we attended in Sausalito. We only spend just over $2 out of pocket for the gift.  Score!!!!


What do you think of our expenses in September?  How was your expenses last month? Feel free to comment below.


  1. Your low expenses are always so impressive!! Especially in the Bay Area. Maybe I should look into this Costco toiletpaper business, if it lasts 6 months that’s fantastic. I don’t have room right now to store it though haha. That’s a huge score for your friends baby gift! Good frugal win. Do you think your expenses will go up once Baby with Cents starts going to birthday parties and you guys start having birthday parties for Baby with Cents?

    • Oh gosh I swear I feel like I go to a lot of birthday parties for kids. I try to buy toys that are on sale or on clearance. But kids are smart, they eventually ask you to buy toys lol.

      Great post for September! It looks like you and your family really kept the costs down. My September was pretty good as I was able to put away over $600 for preschool tuition. I’m hoping to do the same for October. FIngers crossed.

    • Once we start going to more birthday parties we figured that the most we will spend on a gift is $30 so it won’t hurt us that bad.
      We want to keep BwC’s first few birthday parties really small so it would be only be immediate family. We think this is best way because he won’t remember it anyway and we have people who are around him lot be there. When he starts going to school at 5 or 6 is when we will look into having a bigger party with a theme all that good stuff. Plus he will be able to remember those.

  2. When people said SF is expensive, they should ask you guys how it’s done xD

  3. I’m always impressed by your expense report given that you live in SF!

    • Yeah we try to keep everything at a minimum especially with the groceries. Mother with Cents wants to keep our grocery expenses under $300 and rarely wants to go retail shopping. Add to the fact that our rent fortunately $1K and luckily our expenses is really low.

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