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December 9th, 2015 at 08:06 pm

It's been a little bit since I've been around, but things have been a tiny bit crazy.

I have a new part time special education teaching job that is only for this year, but I'm working three days a week from 8:45 to 2:15 (one day until 3:15), which means I get to drop off and pick up the kid at school most days, which is less money to daycare - about $20 less a week! And I'm getting paid hourly at a teacher wage.

I don't have any benefits, but I didn't have benefits subbing either.

It also means that I can sub Mondays and Fridays if I want to - and sometimes I want to, and sometimes I'd like to set Mondays on fire, but it's nice to have the option to bring in a little more money every week.

The divorce drags on and on, and my lawyer is awesome but expensive. I just want to be DONE.

Voldemort and I are making most of our holiday gifts this year.

Voldemort made these snowball soaps for their (pronoun switch again!) cousins, and it was super easy and fun. And cheap! We used old lego figures that V doesn't play with anymore to put inside the snowballs.

I'm making dry erase placemats for V and the cousins as well, which I hope they'll like.

The sisters are getting homemade clove lip balm - my SIL loved the Burt's Bees clove balm, but they aren't making that anymore, so I found a recipe and played with it a bit, and I think I got pretty close!

I also have vanilla brewing for the sister who bakes, and I took an extra vanilla bean and decided to make some vanilla sugar while I was at it.

My dad will get cookies, and my sister is getting my mom a crockpot, so I'm going to get her a crockpot cookbook to go with it.

And that's pretty much everybody - there are still some bought things that I'm getting for the kid - and I'm having no luck finding a decent pair of roller skates used, so I might have to go new for those - but mostly, gifts are taken care of!

Yay for PayDay and Frugality

September 30th, 2015 at 05:13 pm

Today I got paid for 4.5 days of subbing last month - I would have done much more, only they didn't get me in the system until the 8th, I had to take a day off, and the end of the pay period is the 14th. So, I got a gross payment of $430ish. Which, yay.

Of course, seeing as my actual check was $168, I then emailed the school district to ask why the heck they were charging me for vision and dental insurance when I'm not eligible to be getting those through the district.

Ugh.

But hey, I've been subbing at the same place for two weeks, and practically every day since the new pay period (one or two half days in there, plus one day off to stay home with pukey kid), so I have high hopes for next month's paycheck. And the majority of the last full time teacher paycheck was put in savings specifically for this month, so I will make it.

I've also sold a textbook on half.com for $109, which will help, and I invoiced for $195 for proofreading in September, both of which will help.

Frugal stuff I've been doing:

-The majority of Voldemort's fall/winter wardrobe was found at the thrift store for about $30 total. She'll (we're in the midst of playing with pronouns, currently V is a "boy who uses she/her") need a few more things, and is requesting a "stylish winter jacket," but we'll hit up the thrift store again soon and might be able to flesh the wardrobe out a little more.

-I figured out how insanely easy it is to make mac and cheese from scratch on the stovetop without a box. Not saving a lot of money, no, but a little bit helps.

-I've been doing better at making smoothies in the morning to take in the car on the way to work. If I don't, I always end up stopping and picking up a coke and a candy bar - which isn't awesome for my health or my wallet.

-applied for Medicaid while I'm subbing - both the kid and I were approved, so that's a big relief. The male person has supposedly added the kid to his insurance, but seeing as there is still no card in my hand nor insurance number provided, I'd rather know the kiddo is covered somehow!

What about you? Any fun new frugal things?

Hearts and Beds

September 7th, 2015 at 11:49 pm

Voldemort asked several times over the past two months if we could get him a "low down bed," as he was getting frustrated hitting his head on the ceiling and his inability to make his bed in the loft.

We bought the loft four years ago when we moved to CO. We happened upon it at a yard sale, and I think we paid about $40 for it.

I listed it on craigslist after looking at several other listings, and it went within 24 hours for $60!

That left Voldemort sleeping on his mattress on the floor for a few days until we found a twin bed listed that Voldemort decided fit his vague requirements.

("What do you want? What would you like in a bed?"

"I'll know it when I see it, Mama!")

We ended up calling Amyes, the mother of Voldemort Jr, for help, as she has an SUV, and I have a tiny Civic.

She helped pick it up and put it together - throwing in adding a plywood platform and an extra brace on a leg neither of us was too sure of.

In return, the kids amused each other, and I made dinner for all of us!

We joked that she was now the Man of the House, as she uses power tools and fixes things, whereas I'm much more comfortable in the kitchen and with my sewing machine.

If only I was a lesbian and she was attracted to me, we'd be all set, but oh well!

The loft sold for $60, the twin cost $30, the braces and plywood ran about $20, leaving me with $10 left over.

I think I did pretty well!

Pennies on the Side

July 22nd, 2015 at 04:21 pm

The kid and I have been traveling for the past week and a half, and are finally due to head back to CO today.

I had a conference, and so I dropped Voldemort off with my sister and her family so he and his cousin could run wild. We both had fabulous times, although mine was frequently interrupted by phone calls and negotiations with CO friends in dealing with the male type person who had decided to stay in my house while I was gone, get REALLY drunk, and is supposedly starting inpatient rehab today - which I will believe when I see monkeys and pigs fly past the airplane later today.

While this was an expensive trip, I've done what I can to reduce that - we're taking the bus to the metro, which will take us to the airport, which will take us back to CO and to a car that I am currently hoping does not have a flat tire in the parking lot.

I did have a question, though - I've been wanting to do Financial Peace University for years and have never been able to convince the male. Now that we're getting divorced, I don't have to take him into account anymore. Any experiences with taking Financial Peace as a single parent? I'd love to hear how it was helpful.

One Bite at a Time

May 22nd, 2015 at 03:59 pm

The husband cancelled our couples counseling appointment yesterday, and when I told him I was upset and wasn't interested in talking to him at the time, he said he has the right to be upset and take some time too.

Whatever that means.

But, he did actually reschedule the appointment for June 9th, so at least he took it seriously when I told him it was up to him now.

I'm still working on cutting costs - I decided to reschedule the cleaners for every other week instead of weekly, which does save about $130 per month.

I didn't cancel my uppercase box subscription entirely, but I did take it down to the next level, which is only about $7 difference a month, but still!

I also cancelled the kiddo's subscription to Kidstir, which is a cooking box. It's a lot of fun, but he's barely touched the last two boxes, so I put it on hold until we've got a little more wiggle room and he shows an interest in starting it again. So that's about $25, I think - I'm too lazy to check right now.

Adding up those changes plus the ones I cut before brings the amount per month that I am going to be able to reallocate to $443 per month!

Which leads us to...

I did give in last night and order a new laptop, which was desperately needed. I waited until Dell posted their Memorial Day sales, and only spent $400, which I think is fair. I had the money in my personal savings account, but I put it on the Discover because they were offering an extra cash back if I paid with my card.

So, $443 less going out plus $400 for a new computer leads to no increased money out of pocket - technically, I think.

I'm planning on putting at least another hundred towards the Discover every month and the rest in savings. Because even though I might be blase about currently not being set up for a job next year doesn't mean the idea doesnt occasionally strike terror into my heart.

Cheap Fun

May 18th, 2015 at 03:22 pm

The past two weekends have been pretty good low cost weekends.

Last weekend, Voldemort and I met up with a friend of mine and her kiddo, Voldemort II (they have the same name - it's pretty hilarious), and we went to Big Time Trampoline, which is a big warehouse type place with trampolines, a foam pit, and a maze.

I had won passes to there during the Rocky Mountain Early Childhood Conference a month or so ago, and when my friend mentioned that she wanted to go and take the boys, I handed over one of the passes, and so both boys got in free!

We spent a few quarters on arcade games and claw games, but overall, it just cost us the gas to get there.

This weekend, I met up with the same friend to take the kids to the zoo this time around. We used to be members, but our membership has lapsed, but we still had two passes to get in and one free ticket for the train or the carousel.

Voldemort and I packed our lunch, but we bought chips and drinks inside the zoo to fill them out a little, as we had sandwiches and an orange each, and that much walking makes you hungry!

The boys were far more interested in using the map to navigate than they were in seeing the animals, but we had a blast.

And then last night, for a special treat, Voldemort got a Happy Meal with a free coupon I had gotten a while ago. I had pasta salad made at home, as McDonalds tends to give me stomach aches.

Overall, not too much out of pocket. And it's awesome having a friend to hang out with while the boys run wild. VII is 5, while V is 8, but they don't seem to mind too much. And my friend is a single parent, so having someone to bounce thoughts and frustrations off of while I'm solo parenting is really helpful.

Just writing down some changes..

May 15th, 2015 at 06:54 pm

I'm skipping any and all talk of brandus right now, as he has given me a headache with his inability to get off his pity pony and deal with his mess.

So, instead! Budget!

I cancelled one of my subscription boxes, Homegrown Collective, as I'd signed up for a 6 month subscription two months ago but the two boxes I've gotten so far don't thrill me to pieces, so that's $156 I'll get back.

I have another subscription box that I will most likely cancel - Uppercase, which sends out a personally selected YA novel each month, which i ADORE. But, I have about 17 library books gathering dust at home that I haven't read yet, and it would put $32 in the wallet every month.

The husband cancelled cable, leaving me internet, which is what I use anyway, and phone. So that will go from $200 or so (I KNOW, I don't want to talk about it), to $65, saving $135 every month.

He didn't end up cancelling the cleaners, and I'm torn on that. On the one hand, it would save $90 a week, but on the other hand, if we don't have cleaners, things like mopping and vacuuming will NEVER EVER HAPPEN. I'm pretty good at keeping up with dishes and laundry, but anything else - especially while working full time - ain't gonna happen.

Cancelling the dairy delivery is something like $30 a week, but we haven't had that long so I'm not going to count it at the moment.

So!

Cancelling and downgrading those things is going to wind up saving $206 per month, which is a pretty good chunk that can go towards the only cc that carries a balance (Discover - $8034), or, in the savings account, as my classroom is closing at the end of the this year and I don't have a job secured for next year. But that's a story I'll get into later.

ETA: I totally forgot to add in the return of the rented violins! I'm returning them after work today, and they are $37.40 each, so that's an additional $75, bringing the total of money no longer going out up to $281!

Some Found Money

May 7th, 2015 at 08:42 pm

Over lunch, I pulled out a stack of medical bills from Brandus' seizure - ambulance, ER doctor, substance abuse evaluation, etc - and prepared myself for pain and agony. Last time I called, we had realized that our insurance hadn't been applied, so I was calling to see if it had gone through, and what the balances looked like now.

I thought I had maybe $300 in my flex account for medical bills, but I had $841!

I immediately paid off my personal medical balance, which was a little over $300 - I had an ultrasound and some fun additional uterus related testing a few months ago, and those add cost fast.

I then called about the ER doctor, which was originally $1200. After insurance went through, it was knocked down to $112! I paid that one off in full!

I called on another two as well, but the insurance was still processing, so there was nothing I could do today. The ambulance had only sent the cost to insurance on May 1st, so who knows how long that will take.

But we still have $429 in the flex account, which means I can take care of a chunk of Voldemort's lingering medical bills (it's been a rough few years. Seriously) when I get home. We had that one set up on a payment plan, but I managed to space when the payment was due, so I have to call and what I can do about that.

Yikes. So many medical bills!

Over the Shoulder

October 22nd, 2012 at 06:24 pm

You might want to look away, guys, as this post is all about bras.

Or you might want to stick around for that reason, but unless you wear bras (hey, no judgement here, do whatever you gotta do), it might not be that fun, as we're going to be talking about BUYING bras.

As every woman knows, a well fitting bra is worth its weight in gold.

And for those of us who are a bit more...er..gifted in that area, the COST of a well fitting bra is way more than it's weight in gold.

I went to Victoria's Secret this weekend to get fitted, as my current bras have been fitting a little funny. I'm of the belief that EVERY woman should get properly fitted for bras - some department stores do it, just ask, and both Lane Bryant and Victoria's Secret do it. It's fast and easy and FREE and will save you tons of uncomfortable moments of having to readjust your boobs in public. Not that I would ever do that. Ahem.

I'm up another cup size (WHY? FOR HEAVEN'S SAKE, THEY ARE BIG ENOUGH), so new bras had to be bought.

Now, before people point out to me that you can get bras MUCH cheaper than Victoria's Secret, I know that. I spent two hours in four different department stores and Target a few years ago, tried on every single style of bra in my size as I could, decided on two, took them home, and then discovered they just didn't give me the support needed for all day. Vicky's is EXPENSIVE, but give me support and comfort. Like I said, worth its weight in gold.

2 bras? Ninety seven bucks, kids. NINETY SEVEN DOLLARS.

At least they gave me a free pair of panties.

Whoohoo!

October 1st, 2012 at 04:02 pm

We just got the letter that Brandus' student loan forgiveness application was APPROVED! That is $5000 that we do not have to repay!

For such a long wait, it was a very short letter. It didn't say which loan the $5000 was coming off of - he has a total of 4 student loans, of various amounts and interest rates. I'm hoping it came off of the highest rate ones, but I'm betting not.

But I am very excited about it, as it will change our monthly repayments less - which is more that we can put towards our credit card payments! And yes, I know, I could continue paying the same amount on the student loans and make them go away quicker, but, honestly, the credit card is much more important to me. The Discover card has a much higher interest rate than any of the student loans - it's much more of a priority.

Over the weekend, we also went to the Denver Zoo, where we have a membership. We ate lunch before we got there, and we had a ticket for a free ride on the train, so it was a pretty low cost trip..except for the snowcone we ended up getting for the small friend who went with us.

We went out to eat at The Old Spaghetti Factory for a treat, and it was totally worth the cost. Smile

October will be Expensive

September 27th, 2012 at 03:28 pm

Things that need to get done in October, as we've been putting them off due to lack of money. But now that I've gotten my first full paycheck from my new job, we're a little better off and have some extra money to play with.

Car:
-new tires for my car
-new tires for Brandus' car
-repair/replace speedometer for my car
-check on SRS light on my car and fix airbag if needed

Dentist:
-cleaning for me (find new insurance card!)
-cleaning for Voldemort (no dental insurance)
-cleaning for Brandus (this won't happen this month, but I have to start nagging him early about going)

We have $405 put aside for cars, which will pay for at least 1 set of tires. The speedometer replacement will be HORRIFYINGLY expensive, I'm sure. Any suggestions for what to do/where to go/who to ask?

Eating Out: An Ongoing Cycle

September 26th, 2012 at 02:08 pm

I had a full entry typed up yesterday and the internet ate it. Boo.

Last night, I had a meeting and Brandus had Parent Teacher Conferences. I had to leave my job (45 minutes away from where I live), head to our town, pick up Voldemort, and then drive another 40 minutes to get to the town where Brandus works, so last night was a planned eat out night.

I don't mind every now and then, although I really don't like much fast food. The problem is that it throws me off for the next day.

I take leftovers for lunch almost exclusively. I don't care for sandwiches much, and I'd rather have something hot, so I pack leftovers.

The trouble comes when there ARE no leftovers.

If I eat out for dinner at an actual restaurant, it's generally ok, because I usually have leftovers from large servings. But when I eat fast food for dinner, it means that, almost always, I end up picking up something the next day for lunch as well.

Currently, for lunch today I have string cheese and an orange. I'm doubting that will hold me.

Bills Bills Bills

September 19th, 2012 at 06:24 pm

My apologies if you're now singing Destiny's Child, but that's the price you pay for reading this blog. Smile

Last month, both Brandus and Voldemort ended up in the emergency room. Brandus for gall bladder related reasons, and Voldemort due to a very very nasty stomach virus. We rarely go to the ER. Before this, the last time we went was when I broke my wrist and elbow 2 summers ago right when we were moving in to the new house (OF COURSE). We tend to try and take care of things through normal doctor visits and by taking liberal advantage of the fact my dad is a doctor and can prescribe some meds and answer questions about most issues.

But Brandus wasn't getting better and wasn't getting better and the doc-in-a-box he went to see sent him to the ER.

And then Voldemort started throwing up - which, hey, he's a kid, we've dealt with it plenty of times - but then he was getting sick more often and just laying there crying in pain, and the pain was getting worse, so off to the ER we went.

Fortunately, both of the boys are fine now, but holy heck, do we have some bills to pay.

And of course, the billing offices at any of these places are only open from 8-4:30. And I work 7:30-4:30. So I've spent my entire lunch break calling and paying various bills. Naturally, it's not just ONE bill. It's 2 separate bills from the hospital, 1 from pathology, 1 from radiology, 1 from labs, and 1 from the doc who saw one of them.

So, today's daily spending?
$236.91

And we still haven't gotten most of the bills from Voldemort's trip. Yuck.

The slight good news is that I finally got my new insurance card in the mail, so I can take the receipts from my last prescription back and get a little bit of a refund. I doubt it will be much, as the total bill was under $20, but hey, every little bit counts!

Whoops!

September 17th, 2012 at 06:31 pm

I had an awesome lunch all packed to go this morning in my froggie bento box, but as I was running out the door I managed to leave it on the coffee table. I wouldn't even have realized it until I got to school except for the husband and the kid calling me to tell me.

So, for the first time this school year, I had to go out and get lunch.

I HATE having to go out - we only have 45 minutes to eat, and I'd rather spend that time actually eating as opposed to sitting in a drive through line, but if I don't eat I get a raging headache, and trust me, you do NOT want to try and deal with 12 three year olds unfed and with a headache. IT'S NOT A GOOD IDEA.

I went to Subway, as it's at least mildly heathy, but I'm still pouty about it.

Oh well, at least this way my lunch is already packed for tomorrow, right?

Daily Spending: $5.94

Forever and a Day

October 8th, 2008 at 04:23 pm

It's been quite a while since Ive blogged over here..since well before we moved.

We've settled from Alaska to North Carolina, found a decent apartment and jobs.

Brandus is not liking his teaching job this year. Im not liking the fact that this comes out in yelling fits at me over stupid stuff.

Im REALLY not liking that they "lost" his license application at district office, and have been paying him as a first year teacher with his BS for the past two months.

Im subbing in second grade at the moment, which is fun most days, and exhausting all days.

The child is in daycare, which is spendy, but he loves it, they love him, and we think it's really good for him.

But, I do have a problem. Seeing as murder is a crime, is there ANYTHING I can do to deal with the man in my life whom I love very very much that is REFUSING to deal with the current financial issues we find ourselves in? He wont sit down and talk to me about where we are, doesnt want to look at numbers, and if I bring it up, there's a yelling fit on his end.

He's being an ostrich.

And yeah, we're getting paid a FRACTION of what we got paid in Alaska. Im not working an entirely steady job. He's getting shafted $500 a paycheck. i GET all that. But its the 8th of the month, and we're already down to $67, and he WILL NOT help me.

What the heck do I do? Im really starting to get cranky about it.

It All Adds Up

February 7th, 2008 at 10:53 pm

So, out of curiosity, I took a look at how much I owed last year on the credit cards vs how much we still owe.

And I got depressed when I saw the numbers.

Last year: We owed 15,000
This year: We owe 10,000

And I thought, that's it? 5000 is all we've managed to pay off? What the heck did we move to Alaska FOR?

But, then I started really thinking about it.

Yeah, 5000 doesnt sound like much, especially with how much money we're currently making - but we had a baby. We moved. We traveled this summer.

AND.

We managed to put almost $3000 in savings for our next moving adventure.

So, while we didnt get out of debt, which I was really hoping for, we did make a dent. And we've got a good emergency fund.

And a baby.

So, hey, not too bad. Not bad at all.

Quite a Chunk of Change

December 3rd, 2007 at 09:11 pm

Last year, with me being pregnant, we were heading in to Anchorage about once a month.

Our flight there cost $1300 for the both of us, then hotel, food, fun...it added up.

And I knew that. I knew it cost alot.

But it really didnt hit me until last month, when we both got full pay, and didnt have to go in to town at all.

I had $200 left at the end of the month. And that's after paying all of our bills, paying off $400 in credit card debt, and putting a full $600 in our EF.

Wow! Think how much I can actually do the rest of this year if we can keep from going into town!

Cutting Down to Necessities

November 8th, 2007 at 12:06 am

I would love for us to be able to cut down on our spending. What I cant figure out is how the heck to do it!

We live in a fishing village in Alaska.

Let me repeat that.

We live in a FISHING VILLAGE. in ALASKA.

We already buy in bulk whenever we go to Anchorage. We plan it out carefully, too. We HAVE to. Because we've come up short at the Sam's checkout counter more than once.

We dont drive, the village has no cars, so we dont have to worry about gas. We both HAVE cars, they just arent here. And we have the insurance on them down to the minimum - we wont sell them, because we're planning on leaving here the end of this year, and we're going to need them.

We don't use cash in the village, except to pay our babysitter. The school cashes a check for us. We get direct deposit. So, we cant collect spare change.

We share wireless internet with our neighbor - we dont even pay her for it, we just take our her trash with ours.

We dont have to pay electricity or water or sewer - its all included. Our housing is supplied by the district, so we cant move anywhere cheaper.

The only thing that stops me from putting all the "extra" money towards our debt is concern that we might have to make an Anchorage trip unexpectedly.

If we go in for health reasons, then we get 90% of the plane ticket back. But still, that takes a while. Plus, then there is the hotel and food and picking up anything we've run out of..

Honestly, Im stumped. I have no idea how to cut our budget down any further.

Long Time No See - Update

August 9th, 2007 at 05:49 pm

Whoa, its been quite a while since I logged in and posted! I've been reading on and off, but I've been pretty much insanely busy.

Little Lord Voldemort was born April 23 in Anchorage, AK (and I had plenty of money put away for the whole time we were there).

He's a cutie, that's for sure.


Here's the Dark Lordling hanging out with his Daddy in a hotel.

His birth story was rather insane, involving a very fast labor and no time for Brandus to get from the village to Anchorage to be there. And two weeks later, he was on his first plane!

We've traveled all summer, which we've been able to afford because my dad flew me and the little guy on skymiles to Georgia and back. And then we flew Brandus on a buddy pass, thanks to my aunt, who is a flight attendant on Delta.

But, we went to Georgia, where we stayed with my folks for three weeks, then to Colorado, with Brandus' folks for three weeks, then to San Francicso, just for a vacation, and now we're back in Alaska!

its been an insanely busy summer, and all with a baby in tow. yikes!

Moneywise, we did pretty well. We got our May, June and July paychecks at the end of May in three deposits over 2 days, so Ive been a little stressed about budgeting.

Most of it I immediately put into our ING account, and only transferred a couple thousand over at the beginning of each month.

Of course, that's MY checks. Not my husbands. He makes a little less than I do, but I can tell you right now that he has nothing or very close to nothing still in his account. Whereas I have $1000 left in the ING account.

He also owes the credit card $600, as he said he would use a specific reimbursement check to put towards one of the cards - and then he spent it.

*sigh*

He will be setting up a direct deposit to "our account" this year. Oh yes, he will.

Gone! And Good Riddence!

February 1st, 2007 at 05:21 pm

Yesterday was the most glorious of days. PAYDAY! and not only was it payday, it was payday with BACKPAY for the past four months. So, I got an extra $600, and Brandus got an extra $400.

I was very excited. We discussed sending it straight to savings for the Tadpole. We discussed using it for credit cards and paying off the Old Navy card, as Brandus bought clothes while he was in Anchorage.

So, last night, he mentions that he is going to put some money from his account towards THE BANE OF MY EXISTANCE, the Chase credit card. "Ok," says I, thinking it would be a couple of hundred dollars, which would go nicely with my already sent but not yet credited $300 for the month.

He can't do it online, because the internet is being obnoxious, so he grabs the phone and ducks into the bedroom.

When he comes out?

HE HAS PAID OFF THE WHOLE THING. $1,433.84.

PAID.

THE CHASE CARD IS NO MORE.

*dies of happy*

Now..I just need to figure out what Im going to do with that $300 I just sent in electronically...

And Now Its Time for Good Idea/Bad Idea

January 20th, 2007 at 08:53 am

Or rather, the good and the bad.

The good is that Brandus made it into Anchorage tonight and will be depositing our $1800 health insurance reimbursement checks.

The bad is that this wasnt a planned trip.

Last night, we noticed that our male cat, Riddick, was having some urinary trouble. If you have cats, you'll know that this can be very serious, even life threatening.

So, we talked about it, and even though the trip would be expensive, we werent just going to stand by and let Riddick suffer.

So, Brandus packed up the checks, the checkbook, and the cat, and headed off to the plane.

Expensive? Yes. But..he's our boy. Out here, we would have no choices really, unless we wanted to borrow someone's shotgun if it didnt clear up. And Im not that brave.

Plus, Brandus strained/sprained/tore something in his chest (again!), and this gave me an excuse to bully him into getting it checked out properly.

So, if Brandus makes it to his own doctor, we'll get a chunk of the plane ticket cost back.

Here's hoping.

So, with pet related expenses, it does look like a good part of the reimbursement will go towards the cats and the ferret. And that's ok.

We were planning on using some of the money to buy a new cage for Juice, the ferret, and finally getting a kitty tower, because we had to leave the old one in Colorado. So, we'll just add these expenses in with those.

And hopefully, Riddick will come through all this fine, and only needing some medication.

'Spensive Groceries and $20 Challenge

January 15th, 2007 at 01:14 am

Brandus went to the AC store (as opposed to the Native Store) today, and for my birthday, got me several of the things Ive been really craving lately.

The grapes alone cost $8! For one small bunch of grapes! But! He also got me chocolate milk, REAL chocolate milk, which I have NO IDEA how he managed to find, some fresh carrots, a 12 pack of dr pepper and a few other odds and ends..for the low price of $100 or so. Eek!

But, the chocolate milk ALONE made me extremely giddy, so its not a bad thing today. And we still have $100 left in our grocery budget.

Plus! The past couple of days, 2 people have used ING referrals from me, so Im adding the $10 each to my challange money. Im happy!

Financial Goals for 2007

January 2nd, 2007 at 03:19 am

1. Pay off Chase credit card - currently $2754.30 with a whopping interest rate of 27.24%. Yikes!

2. Track budget with PearBudget, a free spreadsheet budget program. it breaks it down into a day by day, month by month thing, and i like it.

3. Move Roth IRA from current bank to USAA where I can actually access it and put money into it.

4. $20 Challange - I have no set amount to aspire to, i just want to play! Change and any dollar bills that can be set aside, as well as figuring out how to sidetrack Brandus when he goes to the store to pick up this and that, mainly because he is bored.


I would like to have 5 goals, but I cant think of another one that is all that important to me. Except for the "Save for this summer" goal, but I want a specific amount before I write that down as an actual goal. Smile

CC Count

December 17th, 2006 at 08:23 pm

I know I just did this two weeks ago, but Im doing it again, because we've actually made a little bit of a dent, and Im excited!

Old Navy -
was: $510
now: $445
lim: $600

Chase -
was: $2886
now: $2857
lim: $3000

REI -
was: $5073
now: $4873
lim: $5000

Discover -
was: $6698
now: $6644
lim: $6700

TOTAL -
was: $15,167
now: $14,819


The Old Navy would be down another $75 or so, only i really needed maternity jeans!

I hope to have that one completely paid off by January. We should be getting some cash and checks for Christmas, and I want anything we get to go towards getting RID of that bill completely.

Of course, then we found out that we get paid on the 22 of this month, instead of the 31, which made me really excited and got me picturing this one bill gone...

And THEN i remembered that it meant our paychecks have to last a month and a half instead of just the normal month! Ack!

And teachers dont really get Christmas bonuses, so no hope for that. Oh, well.

Mystery Money

December 12th, 2006 at 10:45 pm

How very odd.

We just got back from an Anchorage trip, complete with plane tickets, hotel, car rental, food, and dr's visit.

And I still have $1000 left in my checking account.

After my $250 deposit to my ING account, the $200 regular savings deposit, the car payment, an extra $115 to the Old Navy card (Whee!), the bills...

IM VERY CONFUSED.

Im starting to wonder if I forgot something. Like, some major bill or another.

We are still waiting for a couple of things to come in COD. Like my new jacket from the Army/Navy store.

But, still. Im going to end up going home after work and searching through every bill to make sure I paid it.

Gah.

Down, Down, Down

December 5th, 2006 at 11:22 pm

HA! All credit cards are once again under their limits!

And I managed to sneak an extra $15 to the Old Navy card, and an extra $50 to the REI visa.

I would have sent it all to Old Navy, only I panicked about the REI, thinking that the minimum payment wouldnt bring me enough under the limit.

I figured out how that one managed to get overlimit though. Brandus "accidently" used it instead of his own check card at the native store.

Twice.

On the same day.

*sigh*

oh well, he is leaps and bounds better than he used to be, so Im not going to do more than tease him about it.

But! Hey! Back under limits for all cards, and actually watching the numbers DROP! WHEEE!


I also managed to locate another $1.68 in change, bringing the piggy up to $13.55. As soon as I get to Anchorage on Monday, Ill deposit that, and hopefully send it towards the Old Navy card too!

Car Payment MADE

May 3rd, 2006 at 05:55 pm

*dances* with the half.com money and the money from my clothes selling AND the fact that i am currently working at a higher rate of pay:

Last months car payment AND the late fee AND a little extra were paid!

I never thought id be so happy about this. its ridiculous.

of course, until i moved in with brandus (he is a MAJOR impulse spender) - i HAD no debt and lots of savings. Sadly, its now the other way around. Most of that is student loans and him not working due to school, so its not really his fault, but at the same time..some of it is. some of it is COMPLETELY my fault as well - "sure we can go on vacation and put it on the credit card!"

But, my paycheck for last month was $600 more than the month before, which helped ALOT. we're still having to be tight, but at least we arent overdue on most bills now. i hope...

Made It!

April 21st, 2006 at 03:54 pm

The money from half.com just showed up in my bank account, so thats $50 closer to the car bill.

And then! Yesterday, out of the blue, my mom sent me a check for clothes of mine she had taken to consignment - $100

Plus a pinecone survey check - $5

THE CAR PAYMENT IS MADE!

*dances*

we got lucky this month, i know, because i worked out a deal with Atmos, but i still have to pay the Xcel bill.

Plus, pry the credit card out of the husband's hands..which i did a month ago, but then he ran out of cash and located the card in my drawer. but, really, here's what i cant figure..

I drive to denver (an hour and some trip) once a week.

Brandus works 2 blocks from our apartment.

And yeah, he drives a larger car that takes more gas than mine..but how is he spending $160 a month in gas...when i only spend $80?

Learning Curve

April 14th, 2006 at 06:14 pm

Brandus, who will admit he is awful with money, has a credit card.

It has his name on it.

It is an account in my name. We got it for gas, originally, and we have had MANY conversations over the use of the word "emergency."

"Honey, you asked me to get milk!"

No, you said, do you need anything? and i said, we're out of milk. Do you have money?

And he has improved in leaps and bounds. Last month even, he didnt use it at all!

But now, he's creeping back up there. And not on groceries. On STUPID STUFF. we've discussed the fact we still need another $100 or so to make ends meet this month. He knows. He DOES.

So, when i get the alert online that the card has been used, why is it always for fast food, AND FOR STUPID "TRIALS" THAT HE NEVER REMEMBERS TO CANCEL?

Columbia House Video has charged us twice! TWICE! At $25 a pop! And I cant call and cancel, because the account for the trial isnt in my name. And its not just this once!

Its making me CRAZY. He has his own damn credit card, and he KNOWS he is supposed to use it for crap like this. SO I WONT ACCIDENTLY KILL HIM IN HIS SLEEP.

Sold!

April 10th, 2006 at 08:10 pm

Just got emails from half.com.

Lost S1 has sold for $30.17
Joan of Arcadia S1 has sold for $24.99

Still need to list some of the "loose" (ie, not box set) dvds..like, Robin Hood and The Secret Garden. They're only going for about $7 each, but hey, every little bit counts. Plus, if we really get desperate, we can sell the GameCube. We bought it used, and we play it, but the money would come in handy..

Everything sold is going towards the remaining half (plus late part) of the car payment, which adds up, with late fees, to $260ish.

EEK.

But!

$260-55.16 leaves only $204.84.

i WILL make this whole payment this month. *glowers in concentration*

Havent had a chance to do more than glance over my art supplies, so that still needs to be done.


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