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End of month updates

July 30th, 2007 at 07:40 pm

Some quick updates:
-I made my 12 no spend days for the month!
-I ended up working 20.5 hours of overtime last week
-Yesterday, I bought 4 deoderants, 1 V05 shampoo and 1 conditioner, and 3 Aquafresh toothpastes for 8.33 (or 88 cents each)
-Today, I bought hair products with a gift card to the local pharmacy
-I'm looking for another prescription transfer offer to another pharmacy to get some kind of incentive gift card. Every little bit helps
-I worked 6 hours of overtime today
-I put my car back in the shop because of the check engine light coming back on. Total cost was $135.59.
-My overtime goal for this week is to do 16 hours between now & Thursday. I have vacation time for Friday & Saturday. I plan on using the 4 day weekend as a mini vacation. I'm not going anywhere, but I am going to get some much needed rest.
-I lost another pound this week. I'm down 4.8 lbs so far!

And one random thought---does anybody else get annoyed at those Visa commercials where everyone is paying with their debit card & its going smoothly, then everything grinds to a halt when one guy wants to pay cash? I can't stand those commercials. Which is ironic, because I use my debit card more than cash Smile

Thursday Ramblings and Some Goal Changes

July 26th, 2007 at 07:08 am

Yesterday was a no spend day. I worked 7am to 9pm with a hour lunch, earning 5.5 hours of overtime. I was invited out after work, but I declined because I didnt want to spend money. Plus I wanted to go to bed early. So I came home, made food for today & went to bed. I was back up at 5:45 am (which is a feat, since I am NOT a morning person & my normal work shift is 11am to 8pm).

Today Im working 7am to 8pm & then Im heading to a friends house for dinner & movie night. I offered to bring stuff, but she refused, so today may be a no spend day too. Well see. I hate coming over empty handed.

Im making some changes in my current goals. The plan was to replenish my emergency fund after it was hit with the hot water heater & air conditioning problems. However, I have $5,000.00 in my ING account earmarked to pay back a first time home-buyer incentive loan at 0% due in Sept/Oct of 2009. Ive decided that Im comfortable with having this as a back-up e-fund. So what I am going to do is put all my extra funds directly to student loan # 1. Im really motivated to pay it off quickly, because its in my parents names. If for any reason, I have to touch my emergency fund. I will immediately stop paying down the loan & work on rebuilding the e-fund.

Im getting paid on Tuesday. I have very little overtime in this check, but Ill be putting 194.55 towards the student loan. Next pay period (August 15th), Im hoping to have over 40 hours of overtime to put towards the loan. I REALLY want to get this paid off! If anyone has any comments about my plan, please let me know. Ive thought this through in terms of my comfort levels, but Id like to hear other opinions as well.

10 no spend days for July

July 24th, 2007 at 07:33 pm

Today was another no spender. I'm two away from my goal of 12 for the month of July! I'm looking to make tomorrow number 11. I've already pre-made food for tomorrow's breakfast, lunch & dinner.

I'm working from 7am to 8 or 9pm tomorrow. They've extended overtime hours in a push to meet our month end numbers. So I'm going to take advantage this week. Since I only worked 3 hours of overtime on Monday (my day off), I wasn't planning on making my 20 hour goal for the week. But now its back on. We'll see what I can get done Smile

Today I extended my hold on my Netflix. Its been on hold since May & it was to restart in August. I went online to cancel, but they gave me to the option to extend the hold until October. Perfect timing. I LOVE to celebrate Halloween by watching lots of cheesy horror movies, most of which my library doesn't carry. Also, I have a week's vacation in October, so I'll have plenty of time to watch movies.

In the meantime, I have several movies on request at the library & I'm keeping a list of new releases that I want to watch, but my library doesn't carry. I'll get to them in October too.

free grill

July 24th, 2007 at 10:01 am

My parents friends bought a new grill, so they gave me their old one. Its about 9 years old, but kept in really good shape. My dad is checking it over to make sure its safe, but free is good! Now I just have to learn how to grill Smile

Yesterday, I only worked 3 hours overtime, but I also got my car inspected. So there was some cash out for the 2 year renewal plus gas.

Today, I packed my lunch, so it'll be a no spender. I'm getting a bit bored with the foods that I'm bringing, so I'm going to set aside some time to meal plan some different foods for next week.

6 day workweek

July 21st, 2007 at 01:43 pm

Today is the end of my 6 day workweek and I have a few minutes before heading out of work to update some things--- Spending:
Friday was a no spender. Today, I'll be buying gas, but brought my breakfast & lunch to work, so no cash out there.

Harry Potter 7 arrived at my door from Amazon with the free standard shipping. I feel almost bad about it because people paid for extra for the guarenteed delivery & I didn't, but we both got the same service. But I am really EXCITED to read this new. And a little sad, because its the last. At least this series is one that I will reread several times.

So although I have a ton of things I should get done around the house. I'm going to spend the weekend reading Harry Potter & watching some movies from the library. I currently have Last Holiday (with Queen Latifah, Norbitt, Maxed Out, and the Good German. So I think I'm going to make tonight a movie night & tomorrow a book day.

Then Monday, its back to work for some overtime. My goal is to get at least 20 hours in this week. Definately doable!

yesterday ended up a no spender anyway

July 19th, 2007 at 03:30 pm

I had grand plans to stop by the library & the grocery store on the way home from work yesterday, but I was just too tired. So I skipped the stops & went home, ending up with a no spend day.

Today I packed breakfast & lunch, but didnt pack dinner, so I ended up grabbing a sandwich. I'll stop by the grocery store on the way home tonight & pick up the tomatos & banana. I plan on making food for tomorrow & then going straight to bed. I am BEAT!

I'm still doing all the overtime I can, which is good, because I'm in the middle of this monster project & I just want it to get finished. It is really stressing me out. I'm looking at it possibly being done by Saturday, if some of my coworkers pitch in tomorrow, which they probably will. I will be so relieved when its over.

I am planning on cashing out a gift card through MyPoints this weekend. I have a friends birthday coming up & it'll be great to use to buy the gift. As soon as I figure out what to get him.

planned spending and grocery thoughts

July 18th, 2007 at 03:52 pm

Today was pretty much a no spender. I brought all my meals to work today. After work, I'm going to run to the library to pick up some free books & movies to go through in the upcoming week & weekend. Then I'm going to stop at the grocery store to pick up tomatos & bananas. That will be my only spending today.

I'm back to using cash for groceries because I finally used up all of my gift cards from work. I had $50.00 that I budgeted for myself on the 15th & the 30th. When I just use my debit card, I overspend. With the gift cards, I stuck with that figure (outside of a Walmart run). So I've been thinking about buying some more gift cards and when that money runs out, then thats it. I'm going to mull this one over a little more.

Quick overtime update, I worked 7 hours Monday, 3.5 hours yesterday, 3 hours today. I'll be doing 3.5 hours on Thursday & Friday and a 1/2 hour on Saturday. So my total for the week will be 21 hours.

food, weight & money

July 17th, 2007 at 01:58 pm

Couple of updates since its been a few days since I've posted.

I did some major grocery shopping and a little overspending on Sunday, stocking up on some things. Other than the grocery shopping, I hung around the house, did laundry and made some meal plans.

Yesterday, I did some overtime from 8am to 3pm, then grabbed some cat food on the way home. I'm in the middle of a BIG project at work, so of course, I got a migrane from the stress, but it didn't go full blown & I've been able to deal with just taking pain meds.

Last night I weighed in at Weight Watchers. I lost 3.2 pounds for the week & my mom lost 2. I'm happy that she seems into it. I kinda think she'd have quit if I didnt go.

I packed my food for work yesterday & ate dinner at home last night. Today's a no spender-- I packed my meals for work today too. Both days people invited me to order out with them, but I said no.

Since I've overspent in the groceries catagory & I need (WANT) to replace my ailing wireless router, I am going into super non spend mode to save money.

I'll try to post from work, but right now, I pretty much have no internet at home.

I'm waiting for my first electric bill from the summer with A/C. I have really no idea how it'll be. I did turn it off for awhile, but its back in the 90s again and VERY humid, so its back on Smile

No spend & good tv

July 13th, 2007 at 01:56 pm

Today is a no spender. I packed breakfast, lunch and dinner for work. I worked 8am to 8pm again with a 1/2 hour lunch.

When I got home last night, I cleaned the downstairs, prepared today's food and made food for work on Saturday. So when I come home tonight, I'm going to sit in front of the tv & veg. There's some good tv on tonight. Monk and Psych are both back on. I am a bit of a movie & tv addict. I love them for the same reason I love books. I like to see into other worlds.

I was able to do 11.5 hours of OT this week. My goal for next week is 22, but its likely to be 21, since I have to take my car back to the shop. My car had a recall on some airbag part & they had to order it. Its free to replace, but its inconvenient & I'll have to take a hour long lunch to do it, instead of a 1/2 hour.

Today is payday & I'll pay my normal bills through epay tonight.

A scare at work today

July 12th, 2007 at 04:01 pm

I left work early yesterday to see the Harry Potter movie with my friends. I already had made the time up earlier in the week.

Well, when I came in to work today, I received an email about a floor meeting that occurred a 1/2 hour after I left.

I asked a coworker what I missed and she said it was pretty bad, they're doing layoffs. But in a Florida site, not ours.

At first, I thought she meant us. She even said thats how it was presented in the meeting. I am SO glad its not us. But I'm going to start doing some searching.

I had applied for another position within the same company, but I have yet to hear back about it. Because of this, I have an updated resume. I plan on keeping it updated.

Anyway, I am thankful no layoffs are occurring here. And I am happy to say that if something like that happened, I do have a plan in place. That makes me very happy Smile

So, in the meantime, I am taking advantage of every available minute of overtime to build my savings back up (the numbers to the right have not been updated recently).

In other news, I packed my breakfast, lunch & dinner for work today since I worked 8am to 8pm. I am planning on going home & packing again for tomorrow. I'll be working another 8am to 8pm shift with a half hour lunch. Its surprising how easy it is to work such a long shift. I think its because the work I"m doing is interesting. At least thats something Smile

Back off Murphy!

July 10th, 2007 at 03:54 pm

I wrote before about Murphy moving into my spare bedroom. Lately, its seems as if everything that could go wrong, has. And just right as my work stopped offering overtime. I've been a little worried because I wanted to pay myself back as quickly as possible.

Well... today they announced unlimited overtime again! I'm very excited. I have some appointments & things this week, but I'll be able to get 11.5 hours in this week. My goal for next week is to do 22 hours. Definately doable!

I am still working on the roommate thing. Its been tough. Word of mouth is a no-go and I've only received scam replies on my Craigslist ad. I'm going to keep trying though.

Today has been a no-spender so far. But after work,I'm heading to a second bar to meet up with some work friends. I'm limiting to ONE drink and then I have to the grocery store very quickly. After that, I'll be heading home to make my food for tomorrow.

Car repair expenses

July 9th, 2007 at 08:01 am

Well, as Dave says, it feels like Murphy moved into the spare bedroom. Its just one thing after another for me.

I took my car into the shop today for the check engine light and a belt squealing. I asked them to call with an estimate before starting any work.

So they called me back, trying to upsell me on a dozen different things. She gave me an estimate of 809.85. I said no to most of the upsells, but the major problems are going to cost me $599.95. I have $500.00 in my car repair fund and I'll spring for the rest out of my overtime.

What sucks the most is that I was planning to use that car repair money for new breaks, which I'm going to need soon. Oh well.

I am working on the finding a roommate/2nd job situation & I'm MUCH more highly motivated now.

Also, today I"m at work for the last possible overtime for July. Some of my coworkers are ordering from my FAVORITE place, but I declined and will instead eat the peanut butter and crackers in my desk.

I will be spending tonight though. Here's the background- I've been loosely following the weight watchers plan, but recently cancelled my online subscription to save some money. Over the weekend, my mom started asking me about the plan & to look at my materials. My mom is seriously overweight, with some major medical issues. She's also battling depression. Her doctors have told her that she needs to loose weight, but she's made no effort.

It really hurts my family to see her like this & for about a year now, I've been encouraging her to join weight watchers with me. However, she wants to do the meetings & thats not something I"m really into.

When she brought WW up over the weekend, I jumped on board & told her that I wanted to go to the meetings & would she come along as a buddy & she actually agreed! So I'm going to buy the monthly pass, so that we can go together for the month & once she's into the program, I'll stop going to the meetings (and continue online), but we'll still be weight loss buddies. The monthly pass is $39.95, but well worth it if I can help my mom get healthy!

No spender yesterday, a little today

July 7th, 2007 at 05:30 am

Yesterday was a no spender. Today, I'll be spending a little on some needed items.

I brought my lunch, drink & snacks to work today, so no spending there.

On my way to work today, I got gas. On my lunch break I'm heading to the dollar store for dishwasher detergant & 2 other things. Then I'm heading to the library, where I owe them a $0.25 fine.

Either after work or tomorrow, I'm heading to the grocery store. I also need to stop by Walmart for some staples. I'll be using gift cards for both.

Its interesting, but its been MUCH easier to stay on my food budget using the gift cards. Its a mental thing, but its kinda like the envelope system for me. Once this last gift card runs out, I"m thinking about getting some more to help me stay on budget.

No news on the room renting front. I've had no responses to my Craigslist ad. So I'm going to keep looking. I also think I'm going to resubmit my ad on there, just to get it back on the top of the list.

Tonight I'm hanging out at home, watching a library movie & reading. Tomorrow, I'll be running errands & cleaning.

On monday, they've opened some overtime, so I'm going in. I also need to drop off my car to the repair shop. My check engine light is on & I have to get my car inspected by the 20th. Hopefully, its just a sensor like I think it is, and it won't be too expensive. I REALLY hope so!

Payday & paying for the A/C

June 29th, 2007 at 01:17 pm

I got paid today & I"m putting all my overtime towards the A/C. This still leaves me with a VERY large balance. I'm transferring money from my ING account to pay it, then I'll be paying myself back. I'm expecting about $700.00 of overtime in my July 15th paycheck. Then about $280.00 in my July 30th check. I'll still owe myself about $1700.00 after that.

Unfortunately, they announced that overtime has stopped indefinately at work. So I'm going to be looking at other avenues to pay myself back as quickly as possible.

Today is a no spend day. I packed my breakfast, lunch & dinner and I'll be having a snack when I get home. I'm out of library books and movies, but I have a large to-do list to keep me busy this weekend.

Tomorrow, I'm packing my lunch again. I have leftover tuna fish and I'll make a salad & some breakfast stuff. Tomorrow night will be dinner at home.

There are several movies coming out soon that I REALLY want to see in the theater. So I'm saving my entertainment budget for this paycheck (which lasts me til the 15th) to buy tickets for Transformers and for Harry Potter. I am VERY excited to see both.

Credit lines ! Oh my!

June 26th, 2007 at 06:52 pm

I got an email from one of my credit cards, notifying me that they've increased my credit line. I haven't carried a balance on any of the cards in at least 2 years, but for some reason, they still love me.

I have a few store cards that I use for discounts and coupons. And I have 6 major credit cards. I only use 2 of them, but I haven't gotten around to closing the others. Mainly because I didn't want to mess with my credit bureau prior to buying the house. Now I am thinking about closing some of them.

But right now, I'm just amazed at the credit lines that I have available to me.

CC#1 $2,400.00 limit
CC#2 $3,000.00 limit
CC#3 $4,000.00 limit
CC#4 $6,500.00 limit
CC#5 $7,500.00 limit
CC#6 $13,200.00 limit

Geeze! Like I would EVER use that much if any of the credit available to me.

In a spending update, I brought lunch/dinner to work with me today, only to find it spoiled. So I grabbed a salad from the salad place. A $6.00 super huge salad (I'll have to take a pic next time I get one). It covered me for lunch & dinner AND I finished off the last bit when I got home from work. Not too bad.

Tomorrow, we're having a team outing at work. Except we're staying in to play trivia games. Dull, but not my choice. On the upside, we're ordering food from one of my favorite take-out places! I'm either going to get a sub & split it between lunch and dinner, or get a pasta dish with bread and salad. Which, I'd also split between lunch and dinner. The pasta might last until lunch on Thursday too. We'll see.

Oh, and for an overtime update: I worked 4 hours on Monday, 3 hours today, I'll work 3 hours tomorrow. I might get some time in on Thursday, depending on a doctors appointment, and I'll get 3 hours in on Friday. I'm doing all I can, just in case overtime is no longer available in July.

If that's the case, I'll be looking for a part-time job QUICK!

No cash, credit or debit card weekend

June 22nd, 2007 at 04:40 pm

I was invited to Atlantic City this weekend, with some new friends, but I declined in an effort to not spend right now.

At least we have a movie night planned instead of the weekly bar night we have usually. I'll bring microwave popcorn from home, one of the guys is supplying the movie. Should be fun.

My goal for the weekend is this: to not use any cash, debit, or credit cards. Today, I am working til 8pm. I'm stopping for gas on the way home (I'm on E). Then I'm heading home to watch a library movies and possibly a re-run of House while I clean & pack some food for work tomorrow.

Saturday, I'm planning on leaving my wallet at home. I'm working 8-5. I'll take a 1/2 hour lunch, but I won't be going anywhere. I just plan on playing on the internet for the 30 minutes.

Then tomorrow night, I plan on hanging out at home. I've been working 6 days a week and for the last 3 weeks, my only day off (Sunday) has been packed with family obligations. So I am planning on completely staying home and vegging on both Saturday night & Sunday. Unless the temperature gets too high for being without A/C, in which case, I'm going to camp at my parents house Smile

I'm want to do some organizing and cleaning this weekend, watch some free movies, catching up on blogs and some financial stuff, and generally relaxing. I really need it.

I have food for dinners at home, but I plan on making a stop at the grocery store at some point. I have $29.36 in Super G gift cards left for this pay period. So I'll stock up on some salad stuff & some essentials.

I was going to make some food to freeze ( I have this meatloaf muffin recipe that I want to try), but if its hot, I won't be turning the oven on. I'll just plan on having a lot of salads and tuna fish and pasta salad Smile

So to recap, I'm buying gas tonight. Then no more spending except my gift card to Super G for groceries.

Hope everyone enjoys their weekend!

#275 in line at the library

June 21st, 2007 at 03:32 pm

I forgot that Janet Evanovich's new book Lean Mean Thirteen came out recently. So I went onto my library's website to request it. I'm #275 in line to get the book. However, the total Delaware public library system has about 67 copies of the book. So hopefully, I'll be able to get my copy within a month or so.

I've also been putting myself on the library wait list for a lot of movies. I have a pretty varied taste, but the library has a good selection. Just to name a few that I'm in line for: Blood & Chocolate, Because I Said So, Breach, Epic Movie, NCIS Season 1, and The Pursuit of Happyness.

I've been kinda lost the last few days. Spending more than I like, when I need to reign myself in. So I am going to make some changes. I have been saying that for awhile, but I really need to hold myself accountable.

Also, there's some things I've been wanting to do around the house that I'm either going to put off for awhile or do myself. There's some terrible bramble bushes in between some trees at the end of my property. I was hoping to hold off & get a professional to get in there & haul the stuff away. But now I"m thinking of doing it myself. Maybe do a bit at a time.

In other news, its been really hot and humid here, so being without a/c has been very uncomfortable. We seem to have a break in the humidity tonight, so I'll be able to sleep comfortably.

Monday is the A/C installation day. Its my normal day off, but I usually go in for overtime. So the game plan is to meet the workers myself and about 10am my mom will come over to be around while they're there & I'll head into work for some overtime. This week, I'll have worked 21.5 hours. Next week, probably about 15.5 hours due to a meeting & doctors apointment that I have scheduled.

AND... I heard back from that home improvement store that I had such problems with. The manager of the store that I visited called to get some more information about the situation. He will be calling me back tomorrow. I'll keep you all updated with what happens. I have to share that I was all flattered because he told me that my letter was very well written. I'm so glad I waited until I had calmed down a bit before writing and mailing it.

Food day at work

June 20th, 2007 at 11:56 am

We had a going away party for someone at my work. I contributed potato rolls & butter for about 20-25 people. I spent $6.88 last night picking the stuff up. (I used my grocery store gift card). And today, I ate very well Smile

We had fried chicken, jerk chicken, mac n cheese, spanish rice, spinach dip & beer bread, pasta salad, rolls, plus various cookies and cake. So I am now stuffed Smile It was very good.

I'm working 8am to 8pm today, same as yesterday. I'm going out with some coworkers tonight, so depending on what time I get in, I'm going to come in early again tomorrow.

I have to make some changes in my spending and budget. I've been spending and eating based on my emotions. I really need to make some changes. So this weekend, I'm finally going to sit down & do some of the things I've been putting off financially and personally. We'll see how it goes.

Need to find $50.00 and a $22.00 discount

June 13th, 2007 at 07:39 pm

I have a specialist visit with my gastroenterologist at the end of the month. I used up some of my medical budget on a new medicine I'm trying, so its a little depleted and I have a few 3 month supply of prescriptions to order this month. So, I am going to find little ways to make up the $30.00 copay without having to dig into my medical or other budget catagories.

I also have to get my car inspected, which will likely be a $20-25 fee. I'd like to complete it by the end of the month.

So I want to find ways to come up with $50.00.

First, when I get paid on the 15th, I have $10.00 of the budget going to personal items (shampoo, ect). Since I already have a $20.00 gift card to Happy Harrys (owned by Walgreens), this covers my personal items for the month & the extra $10.00 isn't needed, so I'm starting off this personal challenge with $10.00.

I'll keep updating as I find other funds.

I also came home to a nice surprise. I received the air conditioning repair bill from last week. I had been quoted $322.00 for the visit, but the bill was for $300.00. Yay! When I have the estimate tomorrow, I do plan on asking the guy to consider that I just shelled out such a large amount to their company.

In other news:
-I found out that the $400.00 in gift cards from work is going to come in the form of a Visa gift card as opposed to store cards like last time. I'm hoping to put this amount towards the new A/C unit. I'll have to talk to the company's office, but it shouldn't be a problem. My family has done business with them for years.

-I worked 3.5 hours of overtime yesterday & today. I won't get any in tomorrow because of the appointment for the estimate. But on Friday, I'm going into the office at 7am to do some system checks for the boss, so I'll get in 4 hours of OT, maybe 4.5 if I decide to take a 1/2 hour lunch again.

-And in even better news, the overtime is back on for next week, so I have some opportunity to earn some more OT hours.

Its funny, I keep thinking of the cost of the A/C in terms of OT hours. I'll calculate exactly how much I'll need once I have the figures tomorrow Smile

I already packed food for tomorrow & I plan to have a big breakfast before I leave. So tomorrow WILL be a no spend day for me Smile
Well, I'm off to bed, I'm beat!

Emotional Spending

June 13th, 2007 at 01:28 pm

I had someone I thought was a work friend say something very hurtful about me to another coworker today. I had to get out of the office for a bit to recompose myself. So I went down to the cafe and bought a soft pretzel for 55 cents. It was worth it just for the temporary peace.

This situation concerns a small group of people and I sort of feel that I'm in a hostile environment when I'm around them. I am able to remove myself from them at times, but this changes how I view my current workplace.

I am seriously considering some changes in my job. I'm going to try to let the situation go for now, not get myself worked up, but I do plan to take some time this weekend to sort some things out.

In the meantime, I spent 55 cents on food today. And I did end up going to a bar after work last night with another group of coworkers. I spend $9.00 for 2 large mixed drinks, an order of fries and the tip (its a small local bar, so its cheap). The $9 came out of my entertainment money.

Today I'm working 8am to 8pm with a 1/2 hour lunch. I packed all my food (outside the pretzel).

Tonight I'm going home & premaking food for tomorrow. Then heading straight to bed. Tomorrow I meet with the a/c guys for the estimate. That should be fun.

Being Prepared Helps! And good news!

June 12th, 2007 at 10:18 am

I'm working 8am to 8pm today. I packed all my food and my plan is to not buy any food all day.

Well, around 12:00, I started having a drop in blood sugar. Its not unusual for me, but it was really bad. I was shaking like crazy. I didn't want to eat all my packed food before dinner time, but I also didn't want to run down & buy something from the cafe.

Luckily, I had a small stock of stuff that I brought from home that I keep in my desk. I keep a pack of generic Ritz-like crackers and a jar of peanut butter in my desk for just such an occasion. I spread the pb on a few of the crackers, gulped down the soda and now I'm fine! If I didn't have that supply there, I would have spent AT LEAST 75 cents for a soda and more if I wanted food too. So yay! Crisis averted.

A few more tidbits:
- I also found a quater in the parking lot today!
- I'm going to work a 1/2 hour lunch & get another 1/2 hour of OT in today

And just to share my packed food:
Today I had/will have:
-a small blueberry muffin
-a banana
-1 cup dry rice chex (I eat them as a snack)
-all bran crackers
-tuna sandwich on wheat
-5 crackers with peanut butter on top
-salad with light italian dressing
-homemade pasta salad with wheat pasta, tons of veggies and light italian on it

Not the most imaginative meals, but its been REALLY hot in the office and I just couldn't take any hot food.

I know I'm bringing a salad & the other half of the tuna tomorrow, but I still have to figure out the rest. I'm going to work 8am to 8pm again.

****edited to add****

I just found out that I'll be receiving another $400.00 in gift cards from work. This was the last oppurtunity for it, but I am SO excited that I won!!!!

getting into ultra frugal mode

June 11th, 2007 at 07:16 pm

Well, the A/C went again. The last visit from the repair guy was a last ditch effort to see if it would limp through this summer. Obviously, it won't. I have the cash to get the new unit, but I want to pay myself as soon as possible.

Also, there was a glitch between my hot water heater timer and my brand new hot water heater, so I had the installation guy come back out to take a look. It took him 5 minutes, but it was fixed.

Today I:
-woke up at 6:45 am.
-was at the grocery store by 7:30 am to buy veggies and some staples
-made food to take to work
-called & set up an appointment with the a/c guy
-called & got 1 more car insurance quote. I'm just waiting to talk to the company who has my homeowner's insurance to see if grouping them together would save me a few bucks
-met with the hot water heater guy
-went to work for overtime from 11:30 am to 4:30 pm
-came home & cleaned the kitchen, living room and downstairs bathroom
-made dinner and premade food for tomorrow.

now I'm resting, playing on the internet & reworking my budget a little.

I'm actually going to be under budget for groceries this pay period! Yay Smile I have $17.56 left of my $50.00 gift card that I'm using for this pay period. I'm going to save it for when soda is on super sale again. I like to stock up when its at its cheapest Smile

So other than groceries paid by the gift card, I had a no spend day today.

Tomorrow, I'm working 8am to 8pm (3 hours OT). I've packed breakfast, lunch & dinner to take with me, as well as some snacks.

I've been running the house fans, but not the a/c since the a/c isn't working. But even if it was, I'd probably have it off, its been so beautiful in the last few days.

My goal for this week is to pack my meals all the way through Saturday. I say that sometimes and I don't follow through. But I will this time. I actually put a sticky note on my debit card. It says "A/C", just as a reminder. When I was saving for the house, I had a sticky with a picture of a house on it. Its a strange little motivation, but hey, it works for me Smile

For entertaiment this weekend, I'm getting a few movies from the library. I've been watching old Poirot movies, which is fun. I have plans to do some organizational and cleaning stuff around the house this weekend. It should be pretty frugal Smile

Frugal things I'm doing & my to do list

June 8th, 2007 at 03:53 pm

I opened up a trial size toothpaste this morning that I had gotten as a free sample. I have another one somewhere in the drawer. Its berry flavored, with a hint of mint, which is a little weird, but it was free & it'll last me a good long while Smile I'm going to organize & use all my free samples, before they get lost.

I'm going to be putting together an organizer for my card collection. I keep a stock of cards for birthdays, sympathy, congratulations, ect on hand. But when I go to find them, I can't because they've been shoved into some drawer in the spare room. So I cut the top off a tissue box & I'm going to organize the cards in it tonight. This means cleaning out my desk drawers, but that needs to be done as well.

I'm in the process of reading Green with Envy: Why keeping up with the Jones is keeping us in debt by Shira Boss. I got it from the library awhile ago, but I'm making time to finally read it this weekend. After that, I'm re-reading the last few Harry Potter books so when the new one comes out July 21st, I'll be refreshed!

I am holding off on my impulse to pre-order Mean Lean Thirteen by Janet Evanovich. I LOVE this series. I have all the other books in hardback. But I"m really trying to hold off on it, get it from the Library and just put it on my Christmas list in December. We'll see.

I've been listening to back episodes of Dave Ramsey's show & heard his guest Henry Cloud. I put two of his books on my want list at the library. Boundries, and Integrity. Both should be good reads.

For the weekend, I plan to:
-Deep clean the house
-Finish cleaning the basement after the repairs
-Clean out my car, including vaccuming
-Start updating my resume
-Put some stuff up on Craigslist (I keep putting this off)

Next week I plan to:
-Finalize my car insurance decision
-Work any OT available to me
-Pack breakfast, lunch & dinner every day next week, no exceptions!
-Work on prescription billing issues

Working hard

June 7th, 2007 at 04:16 pm

I spent $1.20 on some fries to go with my salad for lunch. I actually paid out 20 cents cash, and used a 1.00 voucher for my work cafe. Considering I've been at work since 9am & won't be leaving til 8pm, I packed most of my meals, I just got a littler hungrier than I thought.

I plan to go home tonight & make food for tomorrow's meals. I also am finalizing that letter to the store that treated me so badly (see my previous entry on Worst Customer Service EVER). I have the CEO's address, the complaints department address, and the address of the head manager of the specific store that I visited. I want a response. I want to know what they think about the way that I was treated.

In other news, I'm coming in for 3 hours of OT tomorrow & I'll do a 1/2 hour on Saturday for a total of 5.5 hours this week. I have the option for OT on Monday, and they may give us a little during the week again, we'll see. I'll be taking any ot that I can get so I don't have to dig into savings to cover the air conditioning repair. I would be able to 'repay' it quickly, but I'd prefer not to have to.

And just a side note--- we're having a work party next week. I signed up for pretzels only to get publically humiliated for my choice. I was told by a peer... not a manager... that pretzels were'n't good enough & I have to cook something. I told her I'll bring something, but I don't have to COOK anything. She preceded to yell at me from across the aisle. I was PISSED.

If I didn't like my coworker that the party is for, I would have just declined to attend altogether. So I stuck to my guns & told her to write down pretzels. Then about a 1/2 hour later, I changed my item to rolls. I can get them for the same price & they compliment the food we're brining more. Still, it was the rudest thing I've ever seen. AND I wasn't the only person that she did that to.

Total Overtime income for 2007

May 30th, 2007 at 03:49 pm

Just for kicks, I totaled the amount I have earned in overtime since January 1st. The grand total is...... $3,152.54. This is out of 9 paychecks!

I am planning on working 3 hours of OT tomorrow to round out the month. So I'm still due about 25.5 hours of overtime. And I still have the ability to do more OT on Mondays through June.

**edited to add**

Oops, I also forgot the $400.00 in gift cards that I won last month. Its possible that I may be eligible to get them again this month, but its wait and see since my job capacity changed

Lots of upcoming expenses

May 28th, 2007 at 08:36 pm

Just a not-so-quick update

I worked 8 hours of overtime today. The unlimited overtime ends on June 1st. After that, OT will only be available on Mondays for June & likely ending altogether for July.

Halfway through the day today, I called my mom and asked if my family wanted to come over to have some food for the holiday. So my mom supplied baked beans and hotdogs & buns. And I made pasta salad, baked fries, hamburgers and all the fixings. It was completely last minute, but very yummy.

Ive been stalling on handling my bee problem at the back of the house. But theyre wood boring bees and Im actually seeing sawdust on my deck from where theyve dug on the side of the house. Itll be pricey to get the guys out here, but I guess its necessary.

I called around & got several quotes, they all quoted a service of roughly $300-350.00. This includes 2 visits because the bees may come back. Even the guy that came highly recommended to me (the one that did my termite inspection) said $325.00. They are on the roof as well as under the eave, so I can't do this by myself.

I turned on the a/c for the first time yesterday, due to the humidity. However, the a/c sounds like its struggling to work and I went into the basement to check it out and found a big puddle on the floor and it looks like one of the pipes is freezing. So Im going to make a call tomorrow. Im comfortable right now (my ceiling fans are helping), so Im going to go into work at 8am for some overtime & I'll call and schedule the appointment for sometime between Wednesday and Friday. I'm hoping this will be an easy fix, but I'll have to wait and see. This problem trumps the bee guy, so Im going to wait on that for another week or two.

My sister & dad kept playing with my fan in my living room. And they did something to the remote, so I cant get the fan to respond to the remote anymore, although the light still does. I dont have any instruction manuals since the fans came with the house, but its a Hunter fan, so Im going to call their customer service tomorrow & see if they can help me. I REALLY hope so!

On Sunday, I signed up for paper delivery (I got caught at a weak moment at the grocery store). So I am going to call and cancel tomorrow.

I also need to call the trash service & let them know Im going to be putting that broken tv out for pickup. I dont want donate it, since its completely unusable. When I put it out for trash, Im going to put a note on the tv, so nobody thinks its a great find & takes it home.

My electric bill came over the weekend; it was pretty low since I had no heat or air on for the whole month, just the fans when needed. My water bill also arrived. It was higher than I would have liked. Its on my to-do list to replace the tank parts on both my toilets, since one leaks sometimes and one runs unnecessarily. Im going to use the $100.00 gift card to Lowes to help with this one.

Im also going to use the gift card to get a curtain rod, since I 'found' these nice white curtains with flowers embroidered on them from Pottery Barn that I bought in college. Im going to put the curtains up in my bedroom.

I also need to get something to treat my lawn, which has been neglected. There are a lot of weeds and a large section is pretty brown. So Im going to buy some lawn stuff to help kill the weeds and grow the grass.

So my game plan for the week is to not spend any unnecessary money. So Im packing food for tomorrow. Ill make those necessary calls from work. I do have a few dollars cash, which I'm going to use to get a few more veggies from the store.

I get paid on Thursday & I already planned to send $400.00 to my student loan principle. But depending on the charge for the a/c, I might not send it. It's wait and see for that one. I'd prefer not to dip into my emergency fund right now.

quick updates--more spending :(

May 23rd, 2007 at 07:56 pm

A few posts ago, I made the declaration that I was not going to spend any more money on eating out for the rest of the month. Yup, well that only lasted a few days. I'm in the second day of a migrane and instead of taking meds and staying home, I'm in training at work for a new job that I DONT want to do, that is causing a lot of stress for me AND doesn't get me paid any more. Plus, the tylonol just isn't cutting it.

Today, I ate some food from home & bought take out today. AND I'm planning on doing the same tomorrow.

I've been using some of the leftover money on my birthday visa gift card to pay for the food. Now its gone & I'll be using cash.

On a brighter note, I had a $20.00 gift card to Bed,Bath & Beyond, where I bought a Black and Decker Wet/Dry Vac dustbuter (with 20% off). This way I can clean out my car easily. There are no electrical outlets in the front of my house & I've been pondering how to vaccum out my car easily... I had planned on buying a long indoor/outdoor extention cord & dragging my vaccum outside, but this is a MUCH better idea.

I also got a 3 draw plastic container. I've been wanting one to hold my nails and picture hangers and screws and stuff. I've been using an old tissue box, but this way, things will be much more organized & easy to see.

I also used some cash to buy my mom a pack of those magnetic clasps for jewelry. She's been looking for them for awhile & I saw a pack when I was at the register. She's been buying me a lot of meals recently, so I was happy to get them for her.

I did get 8.5 hours of overtime in last week. I'm probably going to get about 4 to 6 hours in this week. Then I'm going to try to get 4 hours in on Monday (the holiday). And another 4 to 6 hours throughout the rest of next week.

Once June starts, OT will only be able to me on Mondays (my day off). So I'm going to try to take advantage of them for the full month, but we'll see.

I'm reworking my monthly budget. And I'm going to work on setting weekly goals for myself. I'm taking care of that over the weekend.

I also need to shop around for car insurance since my company is increasing my rates and I'm sure I can do better. The company has been good to me, but its getting way too costly.

Just some quick updates

May 20th, 2007 at 09:08 pm

Heres some random updates:

-I worked 4 hours of OT instead of 5 because our systems went down and I left early
-I mowed the lawn, but I only had one row left when the mower ran out of gas. So instead of having a no spend day, I spent 20 on gas, to fill up my container that I use for the mower & to put some gas in my car. I didnt fill all the way because the prices were high for the weekend & I know the prices will go down later in the week. Other than the gas, this was a no spend day.
-I looked up the value of my car on Kelly Blue Book: The Trade in value is $4,775 and the Private Sale Value is $6295 for a 2001 Hyundai Sonata with 63,959 miles on it
-My car insurance renewal is coming up in June. They were nice enough to send me the new contract along with a letter stating: Due to increased costs, blah, blah, blah, we are increasing our rates 10%. They did the same last year & the previous year. Most people I know are saying their rates are DROPPING. So my priority this week is to stop around for car insurance.
-My mom visited some garage sales yesterday & hooked me up with a few books & dvds Thank Mom!
-I spent no money eating out today my goal is to do that the rest of the month
-Im heading to Bed, Bath & Beyond tomorrow armed with a 20% off coupon & $20.00 in gift cards.
-Tomorrow, Im heading to the bank. I share a safety deposit box with my parents & Im getting out all my savings bonds. Time to add them up and cash them out. I was just waiting for them to come due

I've been bad, bad, bad with my spending

May 18th, 2007 at 08:03 pm

In the last week and a half, I've been VERY lax in my spending. I've been eating out a lot & its cost me... A LOT. I'm not going to make excuses (of which there are plenty), so I'm just going to suck it up and move on.

I am going to get in a much OT as possible by the end of the month. I've had some changes at work, which make the overtime not so beneficial, plus much more stressful.

So I'm going to do what I can with the OT. In the meantime, I am challenging myself to not eat out at all from today to the end of the month.

I went grocery shopping today and I'm going to pack breakfast & lunch for work tomorrow. In fact, I'm going to leave my cash and credit cards at home. I'll bring my debit card (and leave it in the car while at work), because I need to get gas tomorrow. But thats it. I swear.

I haven't been very good at following through lately, so I'm working on it. I will be spending my lunch hour at the library, which should help. I have a few books to pick up AND I requested The Game (that Michael Douglas movie). It was on tv a week or two ago and I didn't get to watch it, so I requested it from the library instead.

I also have Pan's Labyrinth from Netflix (which I am cancelling at the end of the month).

January Numbers Compared to today's

May 13th, 2007 at 05:42 pm

I was just updating some numbers for myself to see where I stand and decided to share.

January I had a total of $2852.63 in cash savings.

Today I have $9038.44 (not including 401k, IRA, and savings bonds)

Seeing the numbers makes me want to save even more Smile Right now I'm playing on the computer & watching a movie borrowed from the library. I have the heat off, windows open and the lights off. I want to keep my electric bill low, all the extra in that budget catagory goes to the student loans too Smile

I'm going in for overtime tomorrow. Somewhere between 4 & 7 hours. We'll see how I hold up. I'm still feeling a bit ill. If I'm up to it, I have $20.00 in gift cards to Bed, Bath & Beyond, plus a 20% off coupon. Its about a 1/2 hour drive there, but I might go & try to get a few gifts for my gift closet. I have some birthdays coming up soon.

I have about 3500 points in my MyPoints account. I'm thinking about cashing that out too, so I can use a gift card for the birthdays too.

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