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Archive for December, 2012

Payday & Countdown to Christmas

December 14th, 2012 at 01:43 pm

Today was payday and after the expected bills were paid out of this paycheck, I was able to:

-Put $5 into my gas sinking fund (for extra gas usage in summer). Any leftover at the end of the month goes in there too

-put $48 into my emergency fund ING account

-set aside $120 for groceries for the 14th through 31st envelope

-put $190 for entertainment expenses 14th-31st envelope

-have $140 left of my Christmas budget for last minute gifts & items to bring to parties

-$20 in toiletries envelope

-$20 in the pets envelope

- leave $45 in checking for gas for this pay period

The entertainment & groceries is where I really go astray, so I plan on working hard to be able to stick to to the budget. I plan on NOT going over!

On that note, I know tonight is date night. I have a $25 groupon for a local pub where the BF & I will have dinner & a drink. I am hoping to not go over $10 out of pocket

Tomorrow, we are decorating for CHristmas, watching Christmas movies & in the evening going to see his nephew in a play ($10 ticket). I am planning on making breakfast, lunch & dinner at home.

Sunday, I am doing a dollar store run with my girlfriend...we get excited about all the holiday stuff there & its a tradition. $10 of my CHristmas budget is earmarked for it. We will also do brunch on a groupon that I have. I am hoping to get out of brunch with $10 out of pocket.

Monday night, I am doing Trivia at a bar with some friends. 1/2 price pizza and free trivia. I earmarked $25 for this.

Wednesday night, I am having dinner with another good friend & exchanging our gifts. We are doing $5 burgers at a local pub that does EXCELLENT Burgers! I earmarked $10 as I won't drink and will probably order water.

Thursday night, the boyfriend is taking me to a CHristmas Burlesque show. We saw this troup a few months ago & loved the show. He splurged for the tickets, so I will pay for the drinks there. Probably looking at $30-40 there.

Next Friday, Saturday & Sunday are up in the air for plans and the following week will be Christmas. I think we'll be doing a happy hour with friends at some point & I was thinking of seeing if another set of friends wants to come over for brunch to do our gift exchange.

So there is little wiggle room in my entertainment budget, but I am happy to not spend on eating in the work cafe or having fast food to have the experience and time with friends and at events.

Free Tree Removal - YAY

December 6th, 2012 at 03:10 pm

After Hurricane Sandy, I had a downed tree at the end of my property. It was not a big/sturdy tree – but what we call around here a ‘weed tree’. Pretty for a bit, but weak, so it will bend & break in winds. It had vines and poison ivy growing around it (and the other trees in this stretch).

The tree was at the edge of the property that backs up to my house. The property is owned by a farmer’s co-op. There’s no house on the land or any property # to even talk to someone about. I know, from my HOA, that my backyard property stops at the sidewalk and the tree and the area it fell on is technically owned by this Farmer’s Co-op.

However, it is a hazard. I could not breakup/move the tree myself, so I asked my brother in law to look at it when he had a chance. It took him a while to get to it, so in the mean time, I placed a property county code violation report with the County. They sent someone out to review and deemed it a hazard. They then identified the owner & contacted them. 2 weeks later, my neighbor text me (As we have townhouses and the ‘weed’ trees back up to both of our properties) that there was a company out there removing the trees. AT this point, they were all damaged, so it was nice that they took care of it. I didn’t’ have to put any money out & while I miss the privacy the trees provided, I am glad for the safety.

Best part is – because I did my research & took a little time to get in contact with the right people – the trees were removed at no cost to me!