I am back again & I have missed you guys. My health is holding steady at good (Yay) but my spending was a bit out of control. I am working on creating a new budget with a strict focus on paying down debt.
Additionally, I am dating someone seriously and I find that I am spending so much more because of it. He is a gentleman and tries to pay most of the time, but I like to do my fair share. I need to start saying no to some things, lol.
And - here's the BIG money mistake - I agreed to do a trip to Germany for Oktoberfest. I was able to get an awesome deal on airfare & lodging. I am working to save funds for the rest of the costs. I only have about 2 months to do that - so part of my plan is to sell some of the furniture that is currently taking space in my basement. I inherited a full dining room set from my aunt & I will never use it, its just not my style. So I am working on cleaning it up, polishing & then selling.
I have lots of goals right now - but I am going to stick to my 5 Things lists. This is where I tackle a minimum of 5 things off my To Do list.
Today will be:
1. Grocery shop
2. Pack food for work tomorrow
3. Put up Craiglist ad for new roommate & email photos to a potential one found already
4. Clean bedroom
5. Have fun on date night with the boyfriend. Movies & Dinner out
Viewing the 'Aunt's house' Category
In the last 2 weeks, I've received a package of microwave popcorn, a large bag of peanut m&ms, a $100.00 gift card to Walmart & a free lunch. Tomorrow, they're giving me a free flu shot.
I've been doing a lot of spending due to a weird work schedule, but I'm packing all my food tomorrow. I do need to stop for gas, but other than that, no spending for me.
I've settled in nicely in the house. I finally got all my Aunt's furniture in. I'm going to take some pictures soon, which I'll share online.
I'm still waiting for my first month's utility bills. I have estimates, but I really want to see the realistic figures...should be fun
I'm settling in the house just fine. I've yet to turn on the heat, although the temperature took a dive tonight. I'm just using a down comforter to stay warm.
I packed my lunch today and made my dinner at home. I have leftovers for lunch tomorrow.
I spent $2.00 today. $1.00 for a large bottle of ibuprofin & $1.00 for a 200 count box of sandwich bags. Yay Dollar store.
I normally work 8-5 on Saturday, but I took a 1/2 day. I have a friend who runs a moving company on the side & he's going to move my Aunt's furniture for me. Some pieces will go into the basement & some will go in the living/dining room. I called around for prices & this guy is giving me at least a $100.00 break on this.
Also, I gave my storage unit 10 days notice for vacancy as their policy requires, but since I wouldn't actually be moving until after my next due date, under their policy, I would owe them another month's rent. HOWEVER, since it was just one day, they waived it. $110.00 saved due to niceness!
I am pretty proud of myself for staying organized. As I unpacked, I recycled all the boxes & put all the empty storage containers in the basement. Now I'm going through & sorting & labelling all my holiday decorations for Christmas & Halloween, as well as craft stuff, old paperwork from my aunt & other things. Everything is labeled clearly & stacked neatly. This is a HUGE deal. No one in my family has ever had an organized basement! I'm the envy of my parents.
Next big project is to tackle THEIR basement!
I would also like to mention that I had accumulated about $80.00 in gift cards from MyPoints & other promotions, which is used for things for the house & its projects. That money went a long way.
I've become very lax about discretionary spending and my goal this month is to track all money as well as limit cash usage. I have a few different office parties to contribute to in the next week, which won't help, but I'm trying to offer to contribute food, not cash. That way I can control my spending.
Hope everyone is staying warm & cozy. As the temps start to drop, I recommend hot chocolate, extra socks, cozy blankets & snuggling with animals & loved ones!
Things have been very frugal lately, but I have so much going on. I finally have a chance to catch up todcay.
Yesterday we moved all the furniture that we're keeping from my aunts house. My storage unit is packed.
Today, we had a Mother's Day Brunch, it was my sister's treat to all of us. My sister works at a nice restaurant & got us reservations. The food was DELICIOUS. I was able to get VERY stuffed and enjoy my family for free...thanks sis.
I used some of my free gift cards from My points for my mom's gift. She wanted to buy some books from Barnes & Noble, so I gave her some gcs & she was very happy.
Also, I went to the Dollar Store this morning to get cards for my sister & mom for 50 cents each. While I was there, I found a brooch that matches most of my mom's jewelry. She has a very specific style that she likes and thats it. She loved it, and it was only a $1.00.
I went to the library on the way home. Got a couple of novels & 1 movie. I have a huge addiction to movies, but have been trying to curb my renting and buying them. My roommate has netflix & a huge movie collection, so he's been sharing...between that & borrowing from the library, I've been doing very well.
I was supposed to go the grocery store today, but I was too tired. So after the library, I came home for a 2 hour nap. My roomies are making hotdogs for dinner and I have food for lunch tomorrow, so I'll hit the grocery store after work tomorrow. Its a great time to go anyway, no one is there at 9 in the evening.
My goals this week are:
-To plan and buy groceries to eat/pack all meals from home. No spending money for food or drink
-To call my car insurance about lowering my rates. Never hurts to ask.
-To redo my resume. I'm going to send out a few this week.
-To apply for 2 positions that sound interesting to me.
Given my current living situation, I am unable to house my ineherited furniture at the townhouse I'm currently living in. My parents don't have the room either. So to keep the furniture, I've had to rent a storage facility. I've chosen climate control because of the delacacy of the furniture. I called around, checked costs & availability and went to my top choices today to make a decision.
The storage facility will cost me approximately $650 for 6 months. This will put a serious dent in my budget, but thanks to my mom's generous graduation gift, I won't have to take money out of my house or education fund to do it.
So I'm buckling down on the budget.
I posted last week that I have to redo the budget, but I never got to it. So today, after running errands all day & heading off to go see my nephews tee-ball game, I'll be home tonight to redo my resume and budget. I saw a position that I might be interested in. Its pretty much the job I'm doing now, but at a different company. If I get my resume together today, I think I'm going to take a chance and apply for it. Otherwise, I was trying to hold off til late June to apply for anything. We'll see how it goes.
I'm really trying to buckle down now. I have $50.00 for gas & groceries to last me to next Thursday. I can do it, but it'll be tight. I'll hit the grocery store on the way home today.
Today I had my graduation ceremony. I'm pursuing 2 MBAs, one in Financial Management and one in Human Resource Management. Since they only hold the ceremony once a year, I was able to attend the ceremony, but I still have 2 classes to complete before officially receiving the degrees. Can't wait to finish everything in August!
My parents, sister, and friends took me out to dinner after the ceremony. My parents and sister are SO proud. They've been very supportive and I'm very thankful for them.
My parents gave me a huge surprise...a $1000.00 check to go towards my house. A huge and unexpected gift. This means a lot to me. And it's had an added benefit-I have become more motivated towards saving. I plan to take some time tomorrow and run through a new budget, cutting as much of the extras as possible to save as much as I can.
I feel very blessed, having my friends and family. This is a step in a new direction. I will complete my last 2 classes, look for a new position that will utilize my new degree and hopefully provide me with more income.
I'll keep you posted on changes & my new totals for my house & school goals.
Sunday, we go to my Aunt's house to finish cleaning it out. We have movers coming next weekend for the furnature. The sale goes final the next weekend after that. Dealing with the sale has been stressful, as well as time and money consuming, so the sale will give my family a much needed rest.
First, I gotta say YAY! I got more giftcards in the mail today:
$20 Bed, Bath & Beyond
Grand total in Gift Cards: $120.00 NICE!
Spent most of the day today with my sister at my great-aunt's house. She passed away last year. We're selling the house at the end of May & we've been sorting through all her stuff. Most of its been falling on my mother's & my shoulders, with my sister helping a little bit.
As sad as it is, we've been dividing up her stuff. Some of it was in her will, but most of the stuff is to be divided between my sister, my mom & myself.
As I'm looking to buy a home soon, this is a blessing. I'm getting the Cherry Dining Room set, which is a table, chairs, buffet, china cabinet & server. All beautiful pieces. I was willed the china. I'm also taking the kitchen table and chairs...they're a pretty oak. I'm taking part of a bedroom set, not all of it is worth taking, so I'm only taking the dresser & the bookcase.
My sister is taking some mirrors & the nicest bedroom set (she's loved it since she was like 6), as well as a loveseat. She also picked out a classic set of Charles Dickens books.
My mother is taking the silver, the tea service and a table.
It seems like I'm getting much more than my mother & sister, but neither one wants or needs any more than what they are taking. When I told them I feel guilty taking so much, they yelled at me. I'm starting with no furniture, so it makes sense to take more.
We've already sorted the most important stuff...the memories. Decades of family pictures & memoribilia. We'll be making copies of the most important pictures & making scrapbooks for each of us as well as a few cousins.
My roommate was surprised that we will be giving the rest of the furniture to an estate company (we get a fee & they take it away). She said she would have kept absolutely everything. I told her we didn't need all of it.
If my aunt's house wasn't in another state, we wouldn't probably use the estate company, but rather sell the pieces ourselves. But with all the travel required, this is just easier and less stressful. As it is, we'll be using a moving company to get the furniture we are taking to our homes.
I'll have to put the pieces in storage until I buy a house...time to revamp the budget again.