June Recap: Happy Birthday!

It’s July! Which means June, my birthday month, passed by, and the year is more than half way over already. A lot happened last month, but at the same time, it seems like nothing has changed.

Trip to Japan

My birthday was in June, and I it jetlagged after my 2 week trip to Japan.  I visited Kyoto, Osaka, Tokyo, Shiga, and Okayama with my mom and my sister. Longest and the shortest 2 weeks of my life!

I’ve finally finished compiling a “photo journal” of the trip on my Journi Travel Blog.  My challenge for that trip was to take all of the photographs on my new Google Pixel instead of my mirrorless camera.

(As you may have guessed already, all of the photos on this post were taken on the Pixel.)

Birthday Celebration at Broadway

The weekend after, my boyfriend came up to NYC and took me to watch Anastasia on Broadway for my birthday.  It was my third time in the Orchestra seats, and we had a great unhindered view.

I highly highly recommend it the show! Their use of technology made it seem like I was watching a movie, not an on-stage show.  And of course, the actors and actresses were fabulous.

We watched the movie on Netflix a week later to compare. I much preferred the Broadway show’s spin on it better (the story is “different” from the movie).

Birthday Trip to Chicago

The next week, I flew off to Chicago for a week long trip, our first destination-based-trip.  Half of it spent working at our Chicago office, and the other half spent as a vacation.

He would often fly to New York City, or I would fly to San Francisco to visit each other, but we had never taken a vacation to a common destination.

The “rush hour” commute was so unlike the one in NYC, I was tempted to call up my manager and tell him I’m relocating to the Chicago office! And the city was so clean and so little people compared to NYC.

But in the end, I was so glad to be back in my own bed, in the comfort of my familiar city.  I’d love to go back soon, though.

I developed quite a few evolving chronic pain points before, during, and after my trip to Japan, many of which still remain, a month later.  I take pain killers twice a day so I can continue to function in society as well as stay asleep at night.  I’ve definitely woken up in the middle of the night a few times in so much pain from my locked-up or swollen joints and dragged myself to the sink to drown a few pain killers.

The chronic pain of unknown sources definitely gave me the final push to make annual physical exam appointment, and to actually go.  It wasn’t of much help, but I got a rheumatologist referral for my joints (I suspect Ehlers Danlos Syndrome, but never had the opportunity to see a rheumy, so have never been diagnosed).  The downside is that my insurance is a piece of crap I couldn’t get an appointment until September.  I guess I’ll go if I’m still alive by then…

Update: I got diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis.

June Finances

I said “screw it” and moved $19,000 from my savings account into my investment portfolio, effectively balancing my net worth at about 85% investments and 15% cash.

When I started investing last year, I was a little hesitant about putting too much money in. So to be “safe,” I opted to only invest 50% of my assets.  But watching capital gains go up by hundreds monthly, while earning less than $10 interest in my savings account… I decided to throw most of it into my portfolio.  I figured that even if the market stalled at 7% return, it’s still better than rotting in the bank.

Now that I have less in my bank account, I’ll be more cognizant on my spending.

I also upped my monthly contribution to the Charles Schwab portfolio to $750/month from $500/month, and my Health Savings Account (HSA) contribution to $400/month from $50/month (since I was expecting mounting medical bills in the upcoming months).  I also changed my automatic Checking account to Savings account transfer to $50/month.  My 401K contribution remained the same at around $400/month.

While I have been spending more money, I don’t want to completely slip out of control in my spending. I hope just having some visual cues (ie: the bank account balances)  as well as having automatic withdrawals will help me manage.

All in all, my birthday month was quite eventful, and filled with a lot of fun!

June Recap

  • Travels: Japan, Chicago, New Jersey
  • Watched: Anastasia: The Broadway, Wonder Woman
  • Investments: +$19,000
  • Savings: -$18,975 (-$19,000+$25)
  • Accomplishments: Started Goal Setting
  • Health: Got a PCP, Started Weightlifting
  • Life: I’m 28 now!
Hiroko Nishimura
AWS Community Hero. Special Education teacher turned IT Engineer turned Technical Writer. Author "AWS for Non-Engineers" (Manning Publications). Technical Instructor "Introduction to AWS for Non-Engineers" (LinkedIn Learning).

7 thoughts on “June Recap: Happy Birthday!”

  1. Hey Hiro. It’s Julie (not sure if you remember me but I used to be juniormint@l which has been years ago). It’s been awhile but I saw you updated today thru tumblr and went over to your site. I’m glad to hear that you are doing well and looks like you’re in NYC too now! That’s awesome.

    Just wanted to say hi 🙂

    1. Hi Julie! I recall your username… from a long time ago in crevice of my bad memory! I’m glad a Tumblr post caught your eye! 🙂 I’m doing alright; though in pain, and it’s crazy where I am now, compared to just a few years ago. I hope you’re doing well, and poke by time to time! I’d love to catch up!!

      1. I’m doing well. Can you believe we’re actually working adults now haha? I’m an accountant and recently started a new job in midtown (used to work in the Fidi area). I would love to catch up with an old lj friend for coffee or lunch if you’re available!

        Random: I was cleaning my room a few weeks ago and found a postcard from you from Japan that shows Ginkakuji temple.

        1. That’s crazy!!! I’d love to meet up! Are you living in NYC or Jersey? I work by Hudson Yards! I worked by Grand Central for 2 years!! Hit me up! What’s best way to contact you? Do you use FB? You can find me at “Hiro Skye.” 🙂

  2. I was following all of your Japan photos on Instagram, and I was jealous! It totally made me want to go back, especially to the Kyoto area. I feel like there’s more there that I’d like to see. I also didn’t know about Journi until you linked to it. That looks like such a neat way to document your trips.

    Seeing a broadway show sounds like a great way to celebrate your birthday. I’m glad you enjoyed Anastasia! I’m also glad you had fun in Chicago. I’ve always heard good things about that city, especially the food, so I’d like to visit some time.

    Eep, sorry to hear about the chronic pain. That’s good that you went to a doctor for it. Even if it wasn’t much help, it’s hopefully a step towards getting help. I hope the appointment with the rheumatologist has better results later!

    Aahh, I’m so bad about investing and keeping up with my portfolio. I keep way too much in my bank accounts. I think that’s a good percentage you have!

    Looks like you had a fun and eventful month overall!

  3. Yay! You’re back! I enjoy being your friend on Facebook btw 😀 I am glad that you had fun on all your trips and did a lot more in June and July so far. Your Japan trip was amazingly awesome! I am glad that you updated!

  4. Wow, June was packed for you! I never have seen Anastasia myself. I did have some toys from the movie from Burger King or somewhere from YEARS ago.

    Sorry to hear about your pain though. When you CAN finally go get it checked out!

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