So on Thursday I got my Retropay - minus the OT hours (next check) and it was $768.xx. After taxes and retirement, it was about $576 extra. Not too shabby.
1/2 of it will go to our general budget and 1/2 will go to my fun money.
I bought two clothing items from Grayson for $27. I'm disappointed in them, but it'd cost nearly $10 just to ship them back. So ... I'm thinking of just keeping them and making them work. One reason I don't like buying clothes online!
I hadn't updated our budget for awhile, but finally got around to it yesterday. I was surprised to see we'd only gone through 1/3rd of our budget.
Of course I need to go grocery shopping tonight .. so we'll see what happens.
I decided to sign up for the clean food dirty girl meal plans - $20/month. I've kind of been backsliding on my eating and think part of it is due to boredom. So I'm hoping that having meal plans set out for me will alleviate some of that. We'll see.
As some of you may remember, my brother lives in Napa. So far he has luckily not had to evacuate, but he's assured me he has his car packed and ready.
So sad about all those places destroyed and lives lost. Redwood Adventist Academy (one of my church's highschools) was completely destroyed.
I'm planning on going to see The Princess Bride on Sunday at our downtown theater. 30 year anniversary showing. It's also showing on Wednesday at certain theaters across the USA.
After that we'll probably be going out to eat at Golden Corral again - Groupon deal 2 meals for $19. (all you can eat Prime Rib ... yuck.) I'll be loading up on fruit and veggies.
We're making slow progress removing the brush pile that our errant fence guy created. Probably two more truck loads to go.
I have the feeling the fence will not be put up til next spring ... Hopefully all the wood we have will make it through the winter (for the fence.)
What a fiasco.
DH fixed the warm air blower machine. I thought it was dead and we'd have to get another one. But Thursday night he took off the shield and futzed with it for 5 or 6 minutes, and Voila! it was working again. $30 not spent!
I've put on the electric blankets and our wedding quilt. It was very welcome Thursday night, but last night it was too much.
Haven't turned the heat on yet though.
I'm going to Aldi tonight to see if they have the $50 HP wireless printer. Our printer stopped printing 6 or 7 months ago, and there have been multiple times we wished it was working.
Viewing the 'Grocery Tracking' Category
So.... today I had a talk with my supervisor - after asking for the 11th pm off.
Long and short - I told her I am looking for another job. That it has nothing to do with her - but mostly my getting stressed out by the cash aspect. I also told her I was worried about the longevity of my position for a number of reasons.
In a nutshell, she reassured me that the cash aspect is not something to be so stressed about (be careful, but not fearful), and that my position isn't going anywhere.
I'm still going to interview for the job, but mainly for the experience (and I don't know who to contact to cancel.) If I get offered the job, I will think about it, but I'm leaning towards staying put.
I'm glad I told her, even if it was really hard.
I got a $25 AGC from Perk today. I also did a Schwan's offer for 4000 SBs which instantly credited (spent $27.40 after 30% coupon.)
I stopped at Dollar Tree and stocked up on frozen fruit, etc. Then got some bananas from HyVee. About $10 altogether.
Are there really people who don't know Hitler killed 6 million Jews in WW2??? A co-worker today made a comment expressing shock at that number (reading something in the newspaper.) I kind of thought that was basic high school history ...
My new computer arrived on Wednesday, but I didn't set it up until Saturday night. Windows 10 definitely takes some getting used to (at least its not Windows 8!)
My old computer is still working, so I'm using it to run videos on while surfing on my new computer. It can connect via WiFi to my modem, but I think I'll be getting another Ethernet cord to connect directly.
I upgraded my monitor and keyboard - already can tell the new keyboard is loads better than the old one. My monitor is a 23" - watched The Secret Life of Pets on it last night. Sweet!
Last night I used one of the two $25 gift certificates I got for transferring two prescriptions to a local grocery store. Spent an additional $14.
I also went to Aldi. I was a little frustrated because two of the four main things I went there for, they were out of - Almond Milk and the frozen 85% beef patties (for DH.)
We overspent on Groceries in March by $17. In January and February we came in ~$80 under both months, so maybe our overage was due to some restocking.
We are in full planning mode for our road trip! We plan on stopping in Colorado Springs for Pike's Peak, Denver for some Pizza place, Las Vegas for a buffet, and some forest in Utah. Then finally arrive to the Los Angeles area to celebrate our one year anniversary with my grandma, aunt, uncle and brother!
I am SO looking forward to the time off! If I could find another job here with comparable salary and benefits ... I'd jump so fast... something that had NO cash dealing.
I *think* I may make it for Round 3 of Dietbet. I'm about two pounds off and 13 days away.
I'm kind of enjoying my break from Stepbet, but will definitely join one again after the trip. It really is a good motivator to get the steps in!
I received my $40 check from Inbox Dollars yesterday. I'm already closing in on $7 towards my next check.
This morning I did the last survey I needed to do for YouGov to cash out for a $100 Amazon card. I also have enough to cash out for a $25 Perk AGC.
Too bad I didn't wait a few weeks for these to put towards my computer. I'm sure the $ will come in handy for something else. Wish I could order thru Amazon from Apple - then could use it for my phone.
I forgot to mention this - but I paid off the last of DH's medical debt in February!
Tonight mark one week since my official first weigh in. I don't want to jinx myself, but it feels different this time. I was able to go into grocery stores this week and most totally ignore the chocolate aisles.
I returned the non-working food processor to Aldi, and then stopped at Walgreen's and bought a Mini-bullet using my $5 rewards towards it and did not buy candy. (I would before use the $5 as an excuse to buy candy for "free")
It looks like I am down about 4lbs so far - though some of that is probably water weight.
I did have pizza Thursday night, but wrapped up one of the slices to freeze for Thursday lunch, and told DH he could have the other one.
Maybe I've finally flipped the switch like with soda.
Our grocery spending definitely shows the difference. We are at $182 for the month, and other than produce, I don't see any more til Friday.
Using the mini-Magi Bullet today, I made hummus. DH was awake and taste tested it - thumbs up. I did use canned chick peas, but will get some dry ones to use once I'm out of canned.
In the Instapot I made a pot of Great Northern Beans, and then my sweet potatoes and farro for lunches.
In a bit, I'll be using it to make "pulled pork" with soy curls, and then brussel sprouts - for dinner.
I got YNAB up to date today, and got all my receipts into Receipt Hog and ReceiptPal. I'm 8 receipts away from a $100 gift card in ReceiptPal.
I cashed out for $25 PayPal from Swagbucks, and also for $10 from Achievemint.
I also got notice that $200 cash back reward has been credited on the recent credit card deal.
I ordered a meal delivery from HomeChef through Swagbucks. It cost $20, but I should receive $20 worth of Swagbucks in return. Making it free (obv.) That may be my lunches for a week in February (or Sunday dinner with DH, plus a few lunches.)
I need to get something to lay my sweaters out to dry - something away from the cats (and cat hair.) Wen I bought all those sweaters, I didn't realize most of them were hand wash. Oops.
I think I'm getting into a pretty good routine now. Most days 70-80% of my food consumption is whole grain/fruit/veggie/nuts/low-processed. Now at over a month without soda.
I saw something on the YNAB forum today called a My Soda Pop (or something like that.) For $75 you could get this reusable kit to make your own carbonated water/juice/soda. Same idea as the soda stream machine, but more environmentally sound. I was interested in it til I saw the price ...
Step Bet - Week 1 (ends Tuesday)
1/2 stretch days, 2/4 active days
I went and looked at my American Express card offers after seeing what CCF posted. I had the Boxed offer a cable/internet offer. These will help me get to the $25 cash out (currently sitting at $16.)
At boxed I bought toilet paper and Madras lentils.
Our poor kitty Baby, the oldest of the brood, doesn't seem to be feeling too well. Thursday night he lost his lunch, and then wasn't interested in the wet food dinner. This never happens. He's a true chow hound.
I made a vet appointment for Saturday morning. I hope it doesn't take too long, because I'm supposed to be doing an announcement for my Sabbath School group at the beginning of service. (Not looking forward to ... but am not going to have to say a word - just be moral support to my teammate.)
I'm wondering if we are saving enough towards the vet category ...
DH and I both had dentist appointments this week. DH didn't think he'd have any issues since he's not had a cavity in 50 years ..... So, when it came time to renew dental insurance this year, I dropped it for both of us.
Wishing I hadn't now.
I had a clean bill of teeth health. My DH on the other hand has a receding gum line. He'd mentioned this to me, but I hadn't realized that was the same as gingivitis.
So ... at his appointment they wanted to do what is called a "deep cleaning." Something which would take at least 2 2 hour appointments and cost $150 after insurance. And this is only AFTER he gets clearance from his family doctor (blood pressure) and his orthopedic doctor (shoulder replacement.)
He feels it would be way too stressful to accomplish this before October 31 (end of plan year.) So ... we are going to hold off on it til next plan year. Hopefully he'll have his blood pressure better under control by then too. Sigh.
DH and I had a long discussion Thursday night. It ended with me saying that IF he found a vehicle that just absolutely SINGS to him, then I would be willing to move a certain amount of money out of the fence fund. (Also, IF he'd commit to keeping the vehicle meticulous so good resale value later.) I did also make sure he realized that it *could* mean that the fence wouldn't happen right away next spring - unless he sells some of his electronics.
This coming week we are going to be going on a short excursion for car hunting / short get-away. Either to Chicago or Denver depending on which area has the most possible cars to look at.
It'll be nice to get away even if just for a short bit. (2 days) Hopefully we'll come back with two cars so the car search will be over for a few years... (This is why I prefer to buy newer models, so that I can buy once and not have to deal with the search again for a LONG time.)
On Sunday we are going to be signing our wills! Also, our DNR statements. It will be good to have that all done. And for free too. (My church's larger organization, called a Conference, has a trust and wills department that does this for church members - all they ask is that the church is remembered in some small way in the will.)
I've borrowed a bunch of books on DIY foods, "easy" vegan cooking, etc from the library. So far 3 books into it, and I'm not terribly impressed ... I am thinking of getting a nut milk bag to make my own milk and butter. DH may roll his eyes a bit ... we'll see though.
I went shopping at HyVee tonight - picked up bananas, apples, brussel sprouts (at Dh's request!), chia seeds, and a couple other things I don't remember. $22.xx
Oh! DH gave me a nice surprise Thursday. When I got home, I found out that after his dentist appointment he had stopped at the local ABC (Adventist Book Center) to see if they had my fave Wham. They didn't, but he brought home some other TVP product for us to try.
I was really surprised because I wasn't sure he'd really heard me when I'd asked him if he'd stop by there sometime if he was awake and out during their hours .. because I was really craving me some Wham. He heard and he remembered.
Today makes 13 days sans soda. I don't really miss it that much.
I did buy and eat some chocolate on Friday, but much less than normal. I actually ate an apple instead of eating the chocolate right away ....
I'd say Day 12 was about a 85% and Day 13 about a 65%. I had leftover pizza for lunch today (from Thursday Little Ceasar's) and it wasn't all that appetizing.
I was going to go on the Saturday afternoon hike with some fellow church members today, but after I finished my earlier post and started to get ready, I realized I just wasn't up to it.
Instead, I took a 90 minute nap.
Even after getting up from my nap (to see DH off to work) I still wasn't feeling very good. So, no walk today.
I'm really hoping I'm feeling better by the morning because I'm way behind on cleaning, and I need to get food ready for the week. Tuesday and Wednesday will be late evenings for me (helping explain the new bus routes to people) and I don't want to derail my healthier eating.
I'd really like to hire someone to come in and assist/push me to get the cleaning done. Maybe some organizing too. Also have someone help me figure out how to make the house smell better ... Sigh.
I did some grocery shopping the last few days. DH agreed that if I made a big pot of Great Northern Beans, that he would eat them throughout the week. (This was after I read to him the section on how people were able to eat 1/2 cup of legumes daily on top of their regular intake, without it causing weight gain. In fact, it caused the opposite. Plus helped to regulate the blood sugar, etc.)
The beans and chickpeas have been soaking since Friday night. I am going to take them out of the water in a few minutes. Maybe use the Instant Pot for the GN beans so hubby can start eating them.
I bought from our local "Farmer's Market" store - almond milk, spaghetti squash, eggplant, red onions, apples, oranges, 2 lbs of Great Northern beans, 1 lb of chickpeas (going to make hummus and roast some too), 1/2 lb of Brazil Nuts (eat 2 a day to help with thyroid, plus heart health), two Medjool Dates ($$$$$$) and some other things I can't remember. $26.xx
From HyVee, 3 candybars (3 for $1), red seedless grapes, ?? $13.xx
From Dollar Tree - multiple bags of frozen broccoli florets, frozen asparagus, a couple spices, etc.
From another local grocery store (Russ) -
bananas, ten different spices/herbs (ground mustard, bay leaves, chopped basil, ground ginger (to keep at work), sesame seeds, ....
I also looked at buying Chlorella and liquid B 12 ... but couldn't stomach the cost. I was thinking about buying some fresh kale too, because the fresh/non-bagged stuff was on a good sale, but I didn't know for sure what was the kale I wanted (3 varieties) - I wanted to try making Kale chips. So I didn't get any.
I'm about halfway through How Not to Die taking notes. Some of the recommended stuff is SO expensive. I'm thinking I'll stick to the recommendations that are a reasonable cost, and then IF something happens to me, then I can go for the more expensive stuff (like Chlorella ...)
A part of me is really frustrated that I'm feeling so poorly even with having been eating much higher amounts of fruits and veggies for nearly two weeks, and little junky food.
I'm not giving up though. Something has to work to get me feeling energetic again. Maybe if DH sees it working for me, he'll be more willing to expand his choices as well...
Redeemed a $25 Walmart gift card today from SBs.
Also used a $30 Petco gift card I earned last month by setting up "repeat delivery) to order some grain free cat food and more litter. Cost after rewards and gift card - $6.86
Almost forgot! The mortgage FINALLY posted to my credit reports! I got a call from the fraud alert place my company uses that there were two alerts - one that the mortgage had been added, and one about the inquiry from Chase.
No soda consumed
2? servings of fruit
Checked on Google to find out what Dr Greger's Daily 12 consists of - had heard him mention it in the book, etc., but I'm not there yet. Only on Chapter 12.
Apparently there's an app to help you track it too ...
The Daily 12 is a list of things he feels important to get in ... daily. (Dr Gregers Daily Dozen)
Beans (3 servings) ...........0/3
Berries (1 serving)...........0/1
Other fruit (3 servings).......2/3
Cruceferious Veg (1 serving)...0/1
Greens (2 servings)............0/1
Other Veg (2 servings).........0/2
Ground flax (1 serving)--------0/1
Nuts (1 serving)---------------1/1
Spices (1/2 tsp Turmeric)------0/1
Whole Grains (3 servings)------1/3
Water (5 servings)-------------3/5
Saturday Score: 17/67 ~39%
Not my best day to start scoring ... wasn't feeling very good and didn't eat terribly good for me stuff, other than at my first meal (cereal w/banana, watermellon, whole wheat toast w/pb)
We won't talk about my "dinner" .. except to say that chocolate and pizza ...
I went to a local grocery store tonight (partly to get a Totino's ...) but also picked up some more hummus, snap peas, oranges and ground ginger. Spent about $15
Sunday we are *finally* meeting with my church's wills and trusts guy. This is our third appointment - both of the previous ones were missed because of me ... (spaced the first one, was during house buying process ... had to cancel the second one due to coming home from work early sick)
I'm realy curious to see how this works. DH and I spent some time discussing who we'd want our executor to be, and who'd be an alternative, etc. We both alreaady know what we want done if we die (cremated and ashes spread to the wind) but probably need those wishes written down somewhere in case we both go at the same time.
I'd like to set up a trust of some sort for animals, maybe have it go to the local no-kill cat shelter or something. DH probably would like that too (this is if we both go at the same time.)
I got my Chase Rewards Unlimited card in the mail today. Just need to activate it now, and send a $500 payment to DHs medical debt. Then probably by next statement will have the $150 cash back. Which will then be put towards the medical debt as well.
Anyone know how long it should take for a mortgage to show up on your credit report? My credit scores all still say "No recent installment info" ...
I've had the mortgage since June...
I'm also looking for a good sign up bonus for a card DH could qualify for. He has some dings on his report in the last few years (before we got back together)
I probably need to wait awhile before opening another card (looking at the Citi Double Cash back card ... though I wonder if they'd switch my current Citi card (with an annual fee) to the Double Cash card (with no annual fee) ... Hmmm.... with no credit pull.
I was reading something on the MMM forum on Friday that got me intrigued about some of the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. I checked a few books out from the library, and have put a few more on hold. None of them though seemed to deal with what happened in the stadium those few days - the rumors I heard about that seemed the most horrific ... so was kind of curious to see if anyone had written about the reality of it. Will have to see though.
My little girl (cat) seems to be on the mend from her bladder issues.. Unfortunately, it hasn't helped her behavior with the other cats. At all. On more than one occasion I have seen her go from one side of a room to across the room and into the hallway to pounce and growl at another cat.
I've also witnessed her swatting at the other cats while they are using a litterbox.
I'm not really sure what to do.
I'm worried that the other cats patience with her is going to run out and they'll gang up on her. Or .. that they'll stop feeling safe using the litterboxes because they are worried she's going to walk by and attack them.
I think a lot of it is her being territorial about me. But I've heard her go on the attack when she's on the other side of the house from me.
I wonder how much it would cost to get a cat behaviorist to come and help us get this figured out? The vet tech said something about giving her her own litterbox and water bowl ... but how would that work?
I have one litterbox per cat plus one, plus water dishes throughout the house. I have no idea how I could make an area accessible to her, but off limits to the others.
This morning I did something I haven't done in YEARS. I walked / jogged 3.2 miles! It took me about 52 minutes ... Considering that for the past six months or so, about the furthest I've *walked* at one time is 1.75 miles, I'd say not bad.
Maybe I'll try training for the Turkey Trot. Haven't done an actual race in quite a few years.
Tomorrow I'm working the BR Welcome (local university welcoming their students back.) It'll be at least 3 hours of overtime. I'm hoping it won't be too hot or humid.
I'm also going to be picking up a piano bench for $20 from someone on a local FB group. I'm hoping that having a bench will make me more likely to actually use my electronic keyboard.
I'm also planning on picking up some more veggies from a local FT store (place that sells lots of veggies/fruits/natural foods.) Possibly get them chopped up and roasted before heading out for the BRW event.
I wonder if frozen pre-chopped veggies would roast very well???
I dropped off DHs scrip for a glucose meter last night at 5:15 and told them I'd wait for it. My name finally got called at 6:10. Ugh. Double ugh.
*DH helpfully told me this morning that I should have just dropped it off to pick up today. Um, sure. But then I would have had to go BACK a second time - though I guess I could go through the drive through and not be tempted to buy stuff inside....
I was also picking up refills of my scrips. My overall total was $79, but then after coupons, ECBs (CVS), etc. it was down to $45. (Of which, ~$38 was scrips.) Besides other things, I picked up knee highs, Gold Bond foot powder, Glade plug in scent warmer/refills, and a thing of hand soap.
While at CVS, I picked up a pamphlet talking about a Weight Loss Program offered by the Minute Clinic. You have someone talk with you about your goals/lifestyle etc. and help you develop a plan. You also get enrolled in a DASH website (based on that diet.) You check in with someone there on a regular basis to collect vitals, etc.
It would make it so you are accountable to someone else, but on your schedule.
I'm wondering if this might not be something worthwhile - especially if insurance would cover most of it. I'm wondering if insurance would cover any of it ... Maybe DH would be willing to do the program with me?
Anyone hear of this program?
Although we've now been married just over 3! months, July was the first month where we followed a joint budget and I completely took over the bill paying. It also was the first full month where we only had one household - although we were paying the final bills from our former apartments.
Whenever DH wakes up, we're going to have a quick budget meeting for August. One thing we've kind of had to hash out this month is the when/how of him giving me the cash tips to deposit. He was used to to just going by the bank once or twice a month to make a deposit. I want to make a deposit every Friday (when the lobby is open til 6.)
He didn't see why I wanted to do that since our account balances have more than enough for our daily expenses. I explained to him that all my money is directly deposited and that helps me be able to guage what the next month's budget will be like. When I showed him how much was available to budget for August from my contributions versus what he'd given me so far ... he started giving me the tips as he got them. (He's a delivery driver - makes a small hourly wage, but averages 2x that in tips/delivery charges.)
So ... since we were putting everything together this month, it is difficult to say what our "income" really was - our budget was based off of all moneys from various checking/savings being put together. Expenses include final bills and deposit charges for new accounts. In other words, this isn't a typical month for us by any means.
So .. expenses:
Mortgage (loan only) $526
Extra Principal: $25
Natural Gas: 69.20
Electricity: 382.44 (includes June bill that got misplaced!!)
Phone: 239.04 (last month of DH needing to use phone as a hotspot for Internet - our bill for August is less than $60.)
Water: 51.43 (2 month bill)
Internet/Cable: 150 (deposit, extra house visit)
Groceries - Fast food: 29.81
Groceries - 265.08
Auto Fuel - 241.87 (delivery driver ....)
Tithe: 130 (DH isn't on board with tithing, but is ok with me continuing my same level as before)
Car Maintenance: 14.97
Car tax/licenses: 421.69 (Tags for 3 cars, 2 new licenses)
Computer Replacement: (DH) 249
Garmin Replacement: (DH) 142
Household (blanket, toiletries, paper goods, fan, etc.) 148.36
Medical - Non-deductible (allergy, etc) 64.53
Medical FSA Reimbursed- 80.48 (copays, meds, heating pad)
Pets - Cats - food/litter -$80.97 (a LOT of litter/food)
Pets - Cats - Medicine(flea meds) $77
Pes - Non Cats - Food - 13.50
Pets - Non Cats - Medicine - 16.61
Fitness - 41.83 (my gym membership, hopefully can cancel soon)
Date Night: 14.77 (although will be getting pizza tonight)
DH fun money - 16
Laura fun money - 79.22
Student loan (DH) 55
Medical debt (DH) 372
Whooh! I think that covers it! Besides the money put into the above categories, there was also money put into a variety of other holding categories.
August will be spendy for car maintenance, and I just got approved for a new AE card which I'll be using to make a $1k payment on the medical (get back 250!)
I'm looking forward to what our first month of spending will be like without deposits and final bill fees. (also without needing to replace electronics!)
I have around 6 hours of overtime in August, and I think September will be a 3 paycheck month. DH is working on putting together some speaker sales. (To help fund his boat and tv wishes.)
Mortgage Principal Balance:
Start 7/1/16 - $112,000
As of 7/31/16 (2 payments) - 111,619
As of 7/1/16 - 3,668
As of 7/31/16 - 3,296
Student Loan - TBD
I'd made a new email account for dealing with all the wedding related stuff /websites so that once it's all done and over with, I won't have residual "email subscriptions" to deal with.
Of course, I forgot my password for the account. So, I had to reset it.
When I finally got in, I found out that 4 people have used the website to RSVP! Sweet! My first responses.
So ... on Monday? I called C and told him that we were interested in looking at other houses. Told him we had two or three we were thinking of.
C tells me = great! Find another 2 or 3 and email me the list so I can get it set up for Sunday.
Ok ... so Mr FT and I scour some more, and find another 5 or 6 possibilities. Mr FT drives by them and ... we're down to 2 possibilities.
I email C Tuesday night to let him know that Mr FT would be emailing him the list soon. Crickets.
Mr FT emailed C the list (of two) on Thursday morning. Crickets.
I emailed C today to find out where to meet him on Sunday. Crickets.
Mr FT and I have decided to take this Sunday off from wedding and house hunting. C will be replaced by a Realtor recommended by my boss next week.
I had one of *those* calls today. Multiple calls where same person is cursing. Multiple calls where said person gets hung up on. Send caller to boss at one point - boss hangs up on person. Person calls back yet again - much calmer at first. Gets a 2 ride ticket freebie. Starts cursing again. Gets hung up on.
I didn't deal with it well (at the time I did, but later ...) Made a Wal-mart run. Junk food ensued.
On Wednesday we had our annual county/city employee health fair. Lots of freebies. One of the booths was our health insurance provider. They're starting a new program this year where they are providing a health coach for free.
I signed up for it.
Got an email from the coach today because she couldn't find me in the system. I explained that the health insurance place had changed my name prematurely.
I also told her kind of what I was hoping she could help me with - namely figuring out how to make healthy and tasty meals which work for both Mr FT and I - especially ones where I can make something good without needing to taste test it (i.e. meat dishes.)
She told me she could help me with that.
I'm supposed to call her sometime next week to chat for 30 minutes - to kind of lay out the beginning framework. Not sure when to do it, since the only 30 minute time frame I have during her hours is my lunch break. Maybe I can take something to eat that I can eat in small bites at my desk between phone calls ...
Once Mr FT is on my plan (for real) he could also use her services if he wants to.
ETA - Well, nevermind then. Mr FT just called me to tell me that he got an email from C asking him to call him tonight. So, we may be going ahead with Sunday househunting plans after all. I'm leaving it up to Mr FT to decide.
So tomorrow night Mr FT and I will be doing our first walk through of the house which we think we want.
My boss was telling me to make sure to flush the toilets, run the sinks and showers, look under cabinets, etc.
What else should we look for?
The driveway has a crack going up the middle and looks like it goes into the garage. Could that be a foundation issue?
I got stamps today to mail the invitations, but won't get them mailed til tomorrow - some of the sticky stuff wasn't holding, so I'm going to tape them tomorrow before mailing.
I also stopped at Walgreen's and bought some Valentine's candy at 50% off - some kiss shaped ferraro chocolates in gold packets = two boxes of them. (table favors!)
I also got $10 worth of gas.
I decided to book the photographer I met with Monday night. He'll be charging $500 (his wife will assist him.) Sometime soon I'm going to have him and Mr FT meet so Mr FT will feel comfortable with him.
I also booked a videographer. She'll do the ceremony and reception (with highlights) for less than $100.
On Friday I have a hair trial appointment. (Yes, I found someone to do my hair!)
Need to work on my homework for the pre-marital counseling tonight, but otherwise am just going to take it easy.
I'm glad I took Saturday "off" - ended up sleeping a good portion of it (partially because my Internet went on the fritz, so sleep sounded good.)
I did go to Walmart Saturday night and picked up $40 in groceries and a gift for Mr FT. I have about $15 left in groceries for the month, but that should be fine as long as I stick to just the bare basics. No Trader Joe's for me this month though.
Sunday was a long and busy day. I started out by getting to S's house at 10 a.m. to help make the food for the Valentine's Ladies Tea. Another lady showed up to help also thankfully. Between the three of us, we were able to get out the door by 1:15 p.m. One of the things I did was make egg salad sandwiches, cut the crusts off, then cut in 1/3rds. Enough for 60 people.
Then we raced over to the place where the Tea was being held. Raced around getting things set up and adding a few last minute appetizers.
The tea itself took about two hours. Afterwards I helped clean up (and got to take home leftovers!)
I got home about 5 p.m.
About 6:10 Mr FT showed up with this:
He had a box of breadsticks thrown in for free because they'd forgotten to print our ticket, and so our order was late.
After we finished eating, we worked on the home loan application. Submitted about 9 p.m. Yikes!!!
Mr FT left about midnight.
Long day. Soo glad for today being off.
I've got a spaghetti squash, butternut squash and 7 sweet potatoes in the oven right now. Later I'm going to cook up a big pot of quinoa and veggies (broccoli and carrots.) Using up stuff in my fridge before it goes bad - plus lots of pre prepared lunches/dinners for the next few weeks.
I'm going to be making my new invitations today. Hope to get them out in the mail tomorrow.
Later today I am meeting with the potential photographer.
Oh, almost forgot! I found someone to do the video for $35!! DVD and highlights!
Cashed out PerkTV for a $25 Amazon Gift Card (should be here Wednesday.)
I will probably need to get some more gas today.
Mr FT and I are continuing budget negotiations. Figuring out just how we're going to merge our finances and make a budget work for two different styles (more regimented and more go with the flow.) We're figuring it out.
Cars and "toys" are going to be our own responsibility. (Toys = boat, large screen tv for Mr FT; home gym equipment for me.) Cable is in discussion ... (I have no use for it, but Mr FT misses it a lot (football) and doesn't buy that I won't ever watch something with it.)
Today I went for my first fitting. The person had quoted me $75 for doing the bustle, taking in the top part and possibly adding some invisible straps. After looking at what would be involved for the hem, she quoted another $100. I decided to go for it - she's going to have to take an entire section of lace off the bottom, and then reattach it. So, yeah. A lot of work and time.
I'd bought a corset off Amazon to wear underneath the dress, but after trying it on with the dress today, I don't think I'm going to use it. It goes up too high and would possibly show. The dress fits fine without it.
The shoes I got have really low heels. And they aren't exactly white ... but since they're open toed, hopefully won't matter too much. Not that many people are going to see my feet!
I've borrowed a bunch of books on communication from the library. One is called "Crucial Conversations" - I'm liking it so far.
I got my Citi Premier Thank You card today. Yowsa! Can one say overpackaging or what? Thankfully it came before my car insurance 6 month premium was charged to another card - so, that's $233 out of $3k out of the way.
I got some laundry and housecleaning done on Sunday - badly needed.
Tomorrow I meet with the first of two caterers. The lady doing my alterations told me that the people in her office go eat at this place for lunch all the time and absolutely love their food. That was good to hear.
Wednesday I need to stop by the bakery again - Mr FT told me he does NOT like buttercream frosting, but wants the "normal" frosting for cakes. When I called the bakery, the person told me that buttercream IS the usual frosting. She suggested I come by and pickup a cupcake for him to try.
I just have to say that I am glad I sold the stock shares I did when I did. That $203 price point would be down to less than $150 now .... Ouch.
Another thing I did on Sunday - I finally did something with the Quorn cutlets. I put all of them in a baking dish, covered them with a can of tomato soup and some spices/herbs, and a can of sweet peas. Baked at 350 for 25 minutes. Turned out to be passably good. I'm using them for dinners this week.
I got my $25 PayPal from Swagbucks today, plus a $3 payment from MobiSave (bought Allegra D on Sunday.)
MobiSave has quite a bit of rebates on produce this week - they are pretty much an instant payment via Paypal.
When I picked up my wedding shoes on Sunday at Sears, I also bought a new purse (desperately needed.) It was too funny though - the name brand is LS (my name, Mr FTs name.) It was $23 (40% off sale.) Mr FT actually noticed I had a new purse when we went out to eat.
My treat - $17.39 Noodles & Company.
I have several pictures to choose from today ... will save the others for later though.
Today I went shopping - my second shopping day of the year.
Carrots were on iBotta for a rebate at Walmart (as well as broccoli) otherwise I might have missed this entirely.
Here you go:
Is it just me, or are these gigantic carrots?!
Between CVS, Aldi's, and Walmart I spent about $35. $12.89 of that was at CVS for my Allegra.
Today was my first trip into Aldi's here. All I got there was fruits and veggies - bananas, spaghetti squash and sweet potatoes. $2.86. Wow! The bananas were $.29/lb. The squash was $1.29 each.
I spent a good portion of the morning working on my application. It is pretty much all done - I just need to find out how to attach multiple documents to it. I scanned all my transcripts (a total of about 13 pages ...) but can only attach one page. Uh ...
The deadline is the 18th, so I still have some time.
After getting a nice sleep in (sort of - Kari wasn't having me sleep in tooo long) and doing some relaxing computer activities ... I finally got off my duff and productive.
ETA - One of the things I did was set up my budget in the new YNAB program I really kind of like it. The goal setting especially. I'll wait til my trial is up to decide for sure, but I may spring for the $45 subscription. Even if I decide not to yet, I'm still locked in for that discount price if I ever do decide to go to it.
I needed 8k more steps for my 50k step challenge, plus I needed to do a GPS tracked 5k walk for another challenge.
So .. I headed to the park. Brrr!! I foolishly wore my Keds instead of the slightly sturdier tennies. My Keds are starting to get really well worn. As in coming apart at the seams in places worn ...
I got the mileage/steps in with frozen feet and wet/dirty jeans legs.
Got home and changed into something dry and headed out again.
This time to Dollar Tree to stock up on frozen fruit. They were out of most of their other frozen vegetarian options - the freezer section was pretty decimated. $11 (Also got a battery for my smoke detector.)
Then on to Walmart - bananas, apples, PB powder*, Ragu sauce*, Amy's! Chinese Noodles!!, etc. $25
*Had iBotta rebates
On the way home I realized my gas was blinking. So I decided to go a little out of the way to the cheap station - $1.89/gallon - and also get a car wash!
My car hasn't been washed since .... ??????
$19.25 gas; 5.44 car wash (undercarriage+)
Had a weird interaction at the gas station. I pulled into a parking spot to make sure the car wash was operating (doors were closed on both sides.) When I came out this lady annoyedly says "Thank you." I'm like, huh? She tells me that she can't get into her vehicle. I wasn't parked outside the lines, in fact, I was parked fairly close to the line on the driver's side. Just weird.
Now I'm finishing up a dryer load of sheets and towels (my jeans are hanging dry.) It's been awhile since they've been washed ... I do laundry every Thursday when NE is here, but that's usually only clothes - and definitely not enough space for two pairs of jeans. So I've decided that the first weekend of each month is towels/sheets/jeans washing time!
Ok - off to get my clothes and then eat my surprise find of Amy's Chinese Noodles from Walmart.
Happy New Year everyone!
So ... I had lots of ideas and plans for year 39. Those plans and ideas worked about as well as most New Year's resolutions.
Nevertheless, a new decade of life means maybe plans and ideas and goals can be a bit better off than just another set of resolutions. We'll see I guess.
Financially I did okay. As of now I have quite a few LTP (long term planning) funds fully funded and have started on the Car and House funds.
Health/weight wise ... um ... If I remember what I started at last December ... Well ... I pretty much maintained I guess. I pretty much haven't been to the gym in at least 3 months (although I have been exercising - just not at the gym.)
Friendship wise ... While I still don't have anyone here I "hang out" with outside of church activities, I am a little more involved. Maybe eventually that will lead to something. Someday.
Relationship wise .... Mostly good, with some frustrations that rear themselves at times overly much. But that generally tends to happen when I'm way overtired.
Job wise - Most days/most of the time it's ok. I have a great boss, and a couple co-workers I also like. The co-workers who were causing drama before have pretty much completely laid off. So ... it's tolerable.
It's definitely helping being able to take time off now and then to get away. Like today - I took off to have a long weekend as my birthday present to myself. Although I might have taken today off anyway because Sunday I did something to my back, plus feeling miserable cold/allergies. (My back is feeling better tonight, as are my cold/allergies.)
Yesterday NE and I went to the local urgent care place because NE had a finger infection. (Most likely from him biting off a hang nail ... When I asked him if he was going to stop doing that - Why? 1st problem in 49 years? - Ohhhhkaaayyy.)
While we were waiting for his prescription to get filled, we went over to SuperTarget. I had $2 coupons for cat litter (Scoop Away 25lb) plus the Savings Catcher had 25% off it. I unfortunately forgot my Red Card though - asked at the front desk and was told to bring my receipt the next time and they'd make an adjustment.
Of course ... I wasn't used to having NE along on a shopping trip, so I also spaced using the coupons (but not the savings catcher!)
I went back to Target today and was able to get both the 5% adjustment and the $4 in coupons! (I also bought a 3rd box with a coupon. Kari is SET for litter for a long time!)
While I was out today I also stopped at Walmart - mainly to pick up a few iBotta items - definitely things I'll use, but didn't need right now. I also was really wanting to find a Terry's Chocolate Orange .... no luck. Stopped at a few other places too. All sold out.
I cashed out for $20 from iBotta today, and also for $25 PayPal from Swagbucks.
I got a postcard from my doctor letting me know that I need to schedule a baseline mammogram .... Oh the joys of my new decade. I was going to do it today, but then realized that I don't know what my bosses schedule is like ... so need to get that info first.
My aunt (who Thrifty Ray has met) has really gotten into knitting since retiring. While I was in CA over Thanksgiving she made me slippers, and had me pick out the yarn for an afghan. She texted me today to let me know that it was finished! I might have it here by Friday. So cool! (Or should I say, so warm!)
Now that we can post pics again, I'll post a picture of it when I get it.
If I'm on the upward mend of this cold on top of allergies thing, then hopefully within the next few days I'll have the energy to get my apartment back into shape. I'd really hate for the property manager to come in right now ... (not dirty, just really, really cluttered/messy)
Oh! I almost forgot. I logged in to restaurant . com today to buy the gift certificate for the fancy place NE and I will be going to on Thursday night. Only to find out that my $200 credit seemed to have completely disappeared!! I checked on Living Social to make sure they hadn't reversed the offer I'd purchased or something ...
I wrote customer service and got a form reply telling me how to redeem an offer. Ugh! I replied ... nothing back yet.
SO VEry Aggravating. (I bought a $200 r.com gift certificate for $35 from Living Social. I hadn't used any of it yet!)
Well it seems like I have developed a cold on top of my allergies. Ugh. So having Allegra D (24 hr) and Flonase in my system daily, and STILL sneezing, sniffling and coughing ... not much else to do but tough it out.
I've been incredibly tired and having a hard time getting myself to do anything I don't absolutely have to do. So ... the robe that I was asked to mend near the end of November ... which was needed by today ... guess when I actually started on it? This morning about 5 a.m. I finished it about 8:30 a.m. (Reattaching braiding on edges in places the cloth had pulled away, and sewing armholes together to a less huge gap.)
I took it with me to church today and gave it to the lady in charge of costumes (it's for a drive through Nativity tonight.)
Church was awesome - it was the spoken/musical Christmas story week. I think this year's story was based on a TransSiberian Orchestra musical? (One of the songs was Music Box Blues, the rest were normal Christmas sonts - i.e. Silent Night, etc.) I wish I'd been a little more with it/not so sleepy - but still very much enjoyed it.
I did not go to the Friday night concert. I realized by Wednesday that I just would NOT be up to it -plus I had that darn robe to do! Part of it also was that I didn't have any money set aside in a concert category - my fun money had pretty much been spent between the Groupon pizza deal and the Living Social Restaurant.com deal. I need to make a separate category for concerts which is NOT to be whacked from for other things. Even if I just put a few dollars in it each month ...
I was looking on Amazon for a purse (mine is getting really shabby.) While on there I looked at my gift card balance. Ouch! I've been buying ebooks $.99 and $1.99 here and there ... and it's really cut into my balance! So ... back to my old rule of only "buying" the freebies!
I did find a purse that I think will work, but I'm going to wait until I have something else to order with it - free shipping. (The purse is $14)
Year 40 is quickly approaching. (Like ... Tuesday quickly. Yikes.) I'm thinking about some changes I'd like to make. Some health wise, some financial, one other possible major change ...
I found a house which would be so perfect ... $55k! Has a one-car garage, enclosed front porch, backyard, fence, basement (990 sq ft, 2 br, 1.5 bath)... If there's one out there now, then maybe in August when I can seriously start looking, there's bound to be another one - maybe even more perfect.
I got my $25 Walmart card from SBs on Friday. So ... I printed it out and went shopping. I had been thinking of getting an Ampore Pedicure device (had a $5 coupon plus a $5 rebate) but just couldn't do $20+ after coupon/rebate. Especially when I found something similar for $10.
After coupons I spent $44.xx total. Minus the giftcard, it was about $19.xx. I got $4.75 in rebates from iBotta, $.60 rebate from MobiSave, $.20 from Snap, $.25 from Checkout 51, and $1 from SavingStar. (None of which I've actually cashed out on yet though.)
I'm $.30 away from cashout on iBotta. I would have been over the cashout limit, but didn't realize one of the items required 2 purchases. Ugh.
I cashed out for another $25 AGC from Perk today. Will get that on Monday.
I did some more messing with my YNAB budget this weekend. I realized that my health insurance OOP is $2000, but through my FSA I have about $800. So ... I reduced that category to $1200 and spread the $800 into other categories.
I also eliminated another LTP category, which added $65 into the budget.
What this all means is that I'll now focus my LTP savings on 3 goals - House Downpayment, Car Replacement, and the Remote Starter.
Speaking of the Remote Starter - On Groupon there was a deal to get it done for $170 in O town. Less than half of the price I was quoted here. Unfortunately, there was only $23 in that category. Maybe that deal will come around again when I have the money ready for it.
Oh! If you remember me talking about the vegge hot pockets I made last Sunday? Well I had a good amount of veggie filling leftover.
Finally on Thursday night I managed to do something with the leftovers! I added a couple eggs, some more flavorings, and a box of Jiffy cornbread mix. Then I formed "patties" and baked them for 12 minutes at 350 degrees.
They are YUMMY! Even NE liked them (he wasn't too sure about my adding the Jiffy mix to the batter - but turns out it worked out just right!)
I really need to get the remaining hot pockets and patties frozen though ...
I almost forgot a funny from my grocery shopping ... two of the rebates were for loose carrots. It didn't specify a quantity. So ... I bought ONE loose bulk carrot. It cost $.10. 1 rebate was for $.50, and the other was for $.20. So ... I made $.60 profit.
NE and I went out for pizza Sunday night. I found a Groupon deal for $9 for $20 worth of food. The waitress was a little bit ... not with it. She wasn't very attentive to us, but when I got the check and was looking it over, I noticed a handwritten $1.75 on the bottom. Not even loudly, I said, "What's this $1.75?"
From across the room, waitress shouts out that it was the drink (NE's.) I figured that out almost as soon as I said it - but it being handwritten had thrown me.
(She'd forgotten to include it on our ticket at first because she thought we were getting the special which included a drink.)
I also bought a deal from Living Social which I think will be really good. It was $35 for a $200 Restaurant.com gift card. I already used $10 of it to buy a $25 gift certificate for a local fancy restaurant we're going to for my birthday. (It will be pretty easy to spend $50 there.)
There's a Steven Curtis Chapman concert here this week. I was really, really tempted to buy a ticket. $25. But ... I really didn't want to go by myself. Plus I just haven't seemed to pick up any energy - in fact I went home early from work yesterday.
I've decided to not go.
I did some shopping on Sunday - made back around $7 between ibotta and MobiSave. Spent about $35 grocery money and $20 cat money.
I also did some cooking. I've been buying single carrots and red peppers, etc., because there've been iBotta rebates on them - so wanted to use them.
I chopped up the zucchini, carrots, onion, broccoli, (actually put in the food processor ... )and then took two cans of Pilsbury's Grands and a can of Pillsubry Croissants (coupon/rebate deal) and made veggie hot pockets! Yummy!
Of course ... I still haven't gotten started on fixing the robe for the Nativity drive through that is happening on the 12th. It really shouldn't take too long to do, just have to DO it!
Other than Sunday, I haven't spent any money this week.
Hard to believe there is only one week left of my 30's. If what happened at work yesterday is any indication - my 40's won't find me being any less klutzy. (Dropped one of those big calculators and broke it completely. Offered to pay for a replacement - my boss told me not to worry about it.)
How many of you actually wear robes? I keep being given robes as gifts ... and well, I've never seen the point of them really. So ... they end up hanging around somewhere in my house for years, and then get given away. My mom is sending a robe for NE ... he isn't a robe person either.
Maybe if I was someone more into fixing up my face, etc. before getting dressed or something? Or if I had other people (other than partner) living with me?
Really, what is the purpose of a robe? Just curious really if I'm the oddball out on this one or not.
We had our first real snow last night/today! It was so beautiful this morning when I finally made myself get out of bed and going.
I wasn't sure I wanted to go out driving in it however .. so settled in for a relaxing morning. One thing I ended up doing was signing up for a 3 month Spotify trial for $.99 on Swagbucks - 300 SBs. I gotta say .. I like it so far. Not enough to justify $10/month after the trial, but I do like it.
Early this afternoon the snow started melting ... so I made myself get out and do some errands.
First thing I did was deposit the money my aunt gave me for my airplane ticket. (cash) Then I went to a credit union I'd opened an account at when I first moved here and closed out my accounts - $37.
That $37 wasn't accounted for in my budget (in fact, I thought I only had $35.) So I decided I'd let myself play with the money a bit.
That sent me to Walmart. The first thing I did was take a sample video cassette of each type to the photo counter. I found out it would cost $25 for each 2 hour length DVD -- plus I wouldn't be able to do any editing before hand.
I got the name of two other places in town where I might be able to both watch/edit beforehand AND transfer to DVD. If memory serves me correctly, the videos are going to need a LOT of editing ...
My first priority really are the slides though. The cost at Walmart for 40 slides/DVD was about $25. Ouch. I'd be roughly guessing here, but I think I have at least 3 or 4000 slides. And I only took the ones starting in 1977 - the year my parents got married (I was 2 yrs old.) I don't plan on using ALL the slides, but even if I culled 10% ... this may be a multi-year project. Multi-year Christmas gifts ...
I bought about $20 worth of groceries, etc. at Walmart (3 of which work for iBotta rebates.) It won't come out of my grocery budget though, since it was unbudgeted money.
I had about $13 left. Then I stopped at the library to return some overdue books. I walked out with about $2. Darn you library fines!
Question ... how would you react?
Every week I do NE's and I's laundry. He only has a few pieces of clothing he wears all week. So I add in my own stuff to make a full load. He provides the quarters. I provide the detergent and labor.
Last night after he collected his clothes from where I'd left them, he made a remark about our socks being mixed together. I was a bit miffed, and told him all it took was 2 seconds for him to pick out his own socks. He replied something about "should do laundry right." I told him he was more than welcome to do his own laundry if he thought I wasn't doing it right.
He thinks I was making too big of a deal of it. Notice - no where in there was any thanks for doing my laundry, etc.
To me, I don't mind doing the laundry. What irks me to high heaven is being told I'm not "doing it right" - especially when coupled with no expression of appreciation for my doing it in the first place. (He thinks he shouldn't have to tell me thanks since he's providing the quarters and I'm doing my laundry at the same time. Notice - he didn't do his laundry while I was gone - even though he had a key to the laundry room here and could've used my soap ...)
Anyway .. just curious about how other's might react in this situation.
So not excited about going back to work tomorrow. At least I have several holidays to look forward to this month.
Two weeks left of Year 39. Yikes!
Sunday I actually managed to motivate myself to do some housework. In about 30 minutes I got my place looking/smelling almost as good as it did after the housecleaner lady was here.
I also spent some time at the church working in the library. I got the rest of the books recorded in LibraryThing and did some reorganizing/labeling. I realized though that the labels that were left for me aren't going to work. Am thinking about how to do it better ... (Also trying to figure out how to check books out via LibraryThing's app.)
I earned a $10 ECB from CVS for setting up the prescription reminder service. I tried finding things that also had rebates or ECB to make it stretch further. But except for one item with a $1 rebate from MobiSave, CVS didn't have what I was looking for. So I did end up spending just $.40 more than the $10 ECB plus got $1 rebate (MobiSave.)
This month I've gotten $8 from MobiSave - they nearly immediately send the money to your paypal - no waiting to reach a payout amount. Pretty cool.
I also went to the local grocery store and got bananas ($.39/lb) and some other stuff (can't remember right now.) That was under $10.
Sunday night NE and I went to a Mexican restaurant in Seward, NE - we both got fajitas. His were beef, mine were veggie. I had leftovers for lunch today. Yum! (NE's treat this month.)
We're planning on doing something next Sunday as "our" Thanksgiving meal since I'll be in CA next week. Might just make a pizza or something.
Tonight I was debating about going to see a local high school's production of Fiddler on the Roof. It would have been $8 at the door. I was really tempted, but ended up deciding to stay home instead.
Cooked up my sweet potatoes and a cups worth of quinoa which I'm dividing up for dinners.
Tomorrow night I'm planning on cooking up some veggies and soup, and also grilling/frying those Quorn patties. Then add that to my dinner rotations.
I think it was yesterday that I cashed out mypoints for a $25 AGC. I'm thinking it will be a long time before the next cash out there.
NE applied for a Paypal credit card and was approved instantly. (I think that made him feel pretty good.) All the better for improving the credit score. (I wonder if the paypal card has the Fico feature?
Walgreen's had a really tempting offer today - buy a Fitbit Charge ($129) and get 30k points. That's roughly $40. Maybe they'll have the same deal again next year ... When I get my next Achievemint app money ($100 - 71% of the way there!), I'll set it aside in the Health category so I can get the charge if I really want it next year.
It makes me so sad what some people are posting on FB about the recent events. And how infantile some governors are acting. Mine included. Ugh.
So I realized that I was about out of allergy medicine today. I remembered that I'd gotten an email from CVS a few days ago offering me $5 off $15. Usually they won't let you use those on psueduedorphine (SP?) products ... So I looked to see what else they had.
Toilet paper .. buy $15 worth and get $5 in ECB. Ok, I'm down to my last 4 rolls (from about a year ago or so ... big pkg from Sam's.)
So I go to CVS planning on doing the toilet paper deal, use the $5 coupon on the toilet paper, and then the $5 ECB get some chocolate. (Technically NOT spending money on it ... )
Well when I get there I ask at the pharmacy for the cost of the Allegra D and my Syntrhoid just in case it's cheaper than Walgreen's. The Allegra D is cheaper! (Synthroid is the same.)
So I buy the Allegra D - the lady uses the $5 coupon on it! I tell her that I didn't think it could be used for that .. but she says, "it worked" shrug. O....kay.... So instead of $16.96 ($2 cheaper than Walgreen's) it was $11.96.
I have a coupon on the MobiSave app to save $5 on Allegra D 24hr 10 count. So 2 weeks worth of Allegra is ending up costing me about $7! Suh-weet!
I also decided to go ahead and transfer my prescription to them. (CVS)
Then I picked up $15 worth of toilet paper (actually, $17 after taxes.) That should last me a year.
I did end up spending $2 after the $5 ECB for chocolate. I was really hoping to find a chocolate orange ... but they only had a dark chocolate version. So I got some other items.
It made me happy to do everything I wanted to do in one store. (The cheaper Allegra D also definitely made me happy! Here's hoping the MobiSave coupon keeps repeating indefinitely!!)
I also paid my tithe/charitable giving today for October and November.. Oops. Totally spaced doing it last month. It works out though, because I put it all on my Discover card and it puts me close to the required $500 spend for November. If I use it while in CA, I should have it easily covered. Then I can stop using it!
(I'll have completed the spend $500/mo for 5 months get $75 deal.)
I have Wednesday off. I was thinking about seeing a movie Tuesday night ($5 all day Tuesday) but just don't see any I care enough about to see.
I'm thinking of doing a cooking / freezing / cleaning day on Wednesday. So today I'm taking it easy. It will be so nice to have a 4 day work week.
Then not too long later, I'll have TEN days away from work in a row! Oh my, I won't know what to do with myself ... (5 of those days I'll be here, 5 I'll be in CA.) Not looking forward to that at all, nope, not at all.
Redeemed $5 AGC from Bing
Redeemed $25 AGC from PerkTV
Spent $45.xx AGC for 2 canisters of protein powder (bought 2 to get free shipping - instead of trying to figure out something else to get to $35 for the free shipping - will last a LONG time.)
At my dentist visit today I did end up having a filling done. It was going to cost $84 after insurance. Zoinks!
I handed over my FSA card thinking there was maybe $5 or $6 left on it at most. Nope! There was over $50 left! Yay!
So since I was in a celebratory mood ... (ya ya sure ... I was using any excuse) I headed to Target and got my fave Amy meal x 3. Plus a few other things.
Spent about $24.
BUT .. today I saw my last October paycheck. Which is the second one going to November.
After entering it in, and filling in the numbers in my various categories ... and knowing that I'll be getting reimbursed for the plane tickets to CA for Thanksgiving ... and knowing that December should also be a 3 paycheck month ...
I came to the following conclusion --
I will be able to meet my $10k in my EF goal by the end of this year!
This goal originally was $12k, but I realized that I wasn't funding some categories properly (i.e. car tags, etc.) and so reduced it to $10k. With some of the larger medical expenses I had this year, I wasn't sure I'd even make that one.
But it (knocks on wood) looks like I just might!
Then in January I can start aggressively saving towards the house downpayment! YES!
I have decided (once again ...) that I am going cold turkey on purchasing soda or any junky food for November and December. (Not saying I won't EAT any junk food - just I won't purchase it myself.)
I've let myself get way too lax with the junk, and I'm hoping by putting forth this moratorium, I will both save money (since many trips to the store are merely disguised trips for junk ...) and help me get back to LOSING weight. Maybe help with my lack of energy too.
Okay, so now for the funny ...
Our bus system has a number of routes which are interconnected. This means that when Bus A is South of O street it is for example #46, but when it is North of O Street, it is #45. A rider could get on Bus A when it is the #46 and ride it from the North to the South and get off of it as the #45.
So ... today I get this call from a woman who was at first and O St. She wanted to know when the #45 bus would be coming by.
After checking to make sure if she was wanting to go downtown or outbound, I told her that the #46 bus would be going by her in about ten minutes.
(The #46 bus goes out from our transfer center west along O St from 11th to 1st, and then the numbers start going back up (Nw 1st, Sw 1st) When it gets to NW 48th and O it heads North. This happens from 6:10 a.m. to 6:10 p.m. Monday thru Friday.)
She then started arguing with me that the #45 bus came by first and O in the morning, but not the #46 bus.
As she was hanging up I heard her say to someone nearby ... "The lady doesn't know her buses very well." LOL
I filled out a comment card at the restaurant the other night. Today I got an email letting me know that I'd won a $15 gift certificate!
I wonder how long that will be good for ... cuz' I'm guessing it'll be a long time before I'll be getting back that way.
I have been neglecting YNAB lately, and so tonight I bit the bullet and spent the necessary time to get it up to date.
Overall, it's not looking too bad. My available to balance is in the red due to waiting on the check from Swagbucks for the double payment refund. I also have spent more in groceries than I wanted to, but still WAY less than half of last months spend fest.
I also updated my investment balances... Over the last 3 months I've lost nearly 28k. Mostly due to the electric car stock. Of course, the loss is all on paper right now - it would only be real if I were to be foolish enough to sell. (and even then it wouldn't *really* be a loss, considering the cost basis of most of the stock is around $25 - 30...)
I'm hoping to hold out until the 1st for any more grocery shopping. Other than budgeted spending (i.e. bills) I don't see anything I'll need to spend on for the rest of the month.
One exception to the above ... NE and I are going to be making a road trip on Sunday to a place about 2 hours from here. We'll be going to a really neat restaurant/museum/place with a working jukebox. He only knows we're going to be going to a restaurant ~2 hours away.
I still have pretty much a full tank of gas, so all it will really cost is whatever food we get. There isn't much on the menu for me other than sweet potato fries ..
I closed out my Nationwide checking as of today (after double checking I won't get dinged the $200 bonus.)
Yesterday (or maybe Wednesday??) I cashed out SBs for a $25 Paypal. I got a 200SB swagup.
I don't think I'll be getting too much in Swagbucks in November with being gone most of a week. But it'll be worth it.
My FF browser is being a real pain. I can't watch any kind of videos on youtube or FB anymore without it freezing completely. I've done some of the tricks which worked before, but they haven't helped. So if I want to watch a youtube type video, I have to do it in a different browser.
I've started seriously looking at new computers ... I have around $150 in Amazon credit right now (after having bought some freezable food containers for lunches/frozen fruit) I think I paid around $400 for my current computer in 2011. (Used Swagbucks credit and graduation gift money mostly for it back then.) I hope I can keep the computer limping along for awhile longer.
I'm curious / excited about the new YNAB version that is in beta right now. A totally web based version. I need to probably start putting money away in a category for that ... Someone posted a link to the user manual for the beta version on FB today ... some neat new features it sounds like.
**Note - If you already have YNAB 3 or 4 etc. you can keep using them for as long as you want, even after the web version comes out. If you just recently purchased 4 (like CCF and someone else I can't think of right now) Jesse most likely will make a VERY sweet deal to upgrade if so desired.
So where I work I often get calls from people about items they've left on the bus. Lots of times it's wallets, id's, phones, lunch boxes, bikes, computers ... the list goes on. Many times I have been able to reunite people with their lost item.
Sometimes the person coming to pick up their lost item is extra enthusiastic. Sometimes even overemotional ... going as far as telling me "I love you!"
I get a kick out of these types of people.
Today though I had one which I think may be the funniest one so far. (I shared the above info to show that I find humor/pleasure from people of ALL walks of life and their reactions to being reunited with their item.)
About 9 a.m. I get a call from a man who is in an absolute panic about an item he left on the bus that morning - one he'd gotten off of around 6:40. What was that item? A hairbrush.
I dutifully called down to dispatch and told him what I was looking for. I could just hear dispatch rolling his eyes. Dispatch couldn't raise that particular driver right then.
So thence commenced five calls from this man in the space of about less than 2 hours. Until he finally got the news he was waiting for - his brush was found and in the driver's possession!
Near the third or fourth call, I got the song "Where is my Hairbrush" from Silly Songs with Larry Boy stuck in my head(Veggetales - if you don't know what I'm talking about - look it up. Seriously cute and funny stuff. Kids songs, yes. But funny!)
I was SORELY tempted to ask the man if he was familiar with Veggietales or Larry Boy. Somehow I refrained.
Around 4 p.m. the man came to the office to retrieve his hairbrush. It was a metal? hairbrush good for kinky hair I think.
As soon as I gave it to him, he immediately removed a bandana from his head - telling me that he'd kept it on all day because he didn't have his hairbrush to smooth his hair out.
Then he preceded to groom himself, almost like he was in ecastcy (sp?), there at the window.
I sat there watching him with a big smile on my face, and trying to contain my giggles. I wasn't laughing at him really (and I really hope he didn't think I was ...) but more laughing at the pure joy he was getting from a hairbrush and the bizzareness of having someone brushing their hair at my window...
Oh where is my hairbrush? Oh where.... is my hairbrush? Oh where, oh where, oh whaaarrreeee!!!! is my HAIRBRUSH?!
I got a call right after work today letting me know that a 5:00 appointment at my dentist's office had opened up. So I made my way through traffic and managed to get there by 5:01. (26 minute of traffic torture ...) I had my teeth cleaned and x-rays done. It looks as though I may have a new cavity. Darn it!
I'll have to back in a couple weeks for an eval and possibly a filling. I really need to do better about flossing.
So ... my dentist's office isn't too terribly far from the Super Target where they have a large variety of Amy's meals. I *know* I said I wasn't going to spend any more this week. But I did spend more. And of course I didn't stop with just a couple of Amy's meals.
Part of the problem was that I was pretty hungry by the time I was done at the dentist. I'd forgotten my lunch box at work, so had only had a plain cheese sandwich and a twix bar. (so healthy, I know ...)
I would say that next time I just won't bring any payment methods with me, but I can't do that since I'll need something to pay the dentist with for the cavity if the cost exceeds my leftover FSA amount. Maybe just bring my checkbook. Hmmm... that might work.
I got my flu shot today. I also wore one of my new to me tops from Schoola. Although I LOVE the top, I'm not sure it is a keeper or not. The nurse giving me the shot asked me if I was pregnant. Nope, just fat, I told her. She was kind of embarrassed, but I understood she had to be doubly sure since if I was, I'd have to have permission from my doctor to get the shot. But ... that made me realize it wasn't my imagination that the design of the top might over enhance my stomach a bit..... It's too bad, because I really do like the top.
Maybe I'll take a picture of me in it, and see what you all think.
I bought the scissors to do this with sometime back in August I think, but for whatever reason kept hesitating.
Today though I decided, gosh darn it! I was going to do it!
I tried to take pictures of each of the steps, but it was kind of hard to make sure the angle was the same each time. But I think you still can get a pretty good idea.
I cut some off, and then checked the length, but it didn't seem like it had made any noticeable difference. So, I cut some more off.
I still have quite a bit of length left, but don't plan on cutting any more any time soon.
Haircuts around here are between $20 - 25 for my length of hair. The scissors cost about $14 if I remember correctly. So they have already paid for themselves.
If you click on the link to see my album, make sure to scroll down to the first one and click on the first picture. I have subtitles on all of them, and it's easier to see. (I was having trouble remembering how to do a shared public album on icloud, hence the two sets of identical pictures!)
This was actually kind of fun.
I did do some grocery shopping today. Spent $13.xx for onions, sweet potatoes, Greek yogurt, bananas, apples, bagels and a treat. I shouldn't need to buy any more groceries until next week.
I got in the mail the renewal for Kari's tags - $21 - so I'll pay that tomorrow probably. (Due the 31st)
Sigh. Like I've mentioned before, September was SPENDY. I did manage to not spend anything except one grocery visit of $12 in the last 10 days of September. So yeah, all this spending happened in the first 21 days.
I logged in to the CU account this morning - the one I am supposed to be getting 2.5% interest ... $.44. Jaw drops. I KNOW I met the requirements. A message has been sent to customer service.
The main budget busters this month were groceries and vacation related categories. The whole mess with the apartment also sure didn't help. I had to take money from the slush fund to cover the hotel costs and other vacation expenses, so I WAM from any category that I could, including sadly, the EF.
It would have been far worse though without some of the extra income that came in this month.
Next month WILL be better.
So without further ado, here is the not so pretty picture:
Tithe - 10%
Charitable - $60
Rent - $430
Gym - 41.73
Groceries - $345.19
Internet - $82.61
Gas - $21.68
Electricity - 52.21
Fuel - $23.49
Medical - 105.46
Kari - $104.20
Health - $15.71
Clothing - 73.65
Electronics - $10
Household Goods - 219.15 (cleaning, supplies)
Vacation - 420.96
Treats - $43.77
Restaraunts - 123.13
Misc. 4.35 (library late fee)
ROTH - normal contribution
EF - $0
Slush - -$153.56
$10 Bing AGC
$100 AGC YouGov surveys
$75 PP Swagbucks
$200 - Bank bonus
$10 - Pact
$27.61 - Ibotta
$200 - Reimbursement from Mom
So far today I:
*cleaned out litter boxes and refilled
*took out trash
*decluttered my kitchen drawers
*put together a box of books and other things that I had been planning on selling on eBay, but have just been sitting there for a year on a shelf ... and took that box plus stuff from the kitchen drawers to Goodwill
*cleaned out my car - found $1
*figured out how to hang the shelves I got a few weeks ago without buying a drill bit (like NE said I'd have to do) Hmph! Girl power!
*moved boxes from beside the back door to behind my bed
*moved suitcases from beside back door and put into my closet (this only made possible because of KonMari'ing my clothes a few weeks or so ago - otherwise would not have had the space in the closet!)
*attempted to put plate hangers on my two deco plates, but found out the hangers were TOO big! (plates I think are 8" and the hangers are for 10-14")
*Went to Walmart and spent way, way too much ...
but ... got two bathroom rugs to go under litter boxes
.... got a new shower curtain w/hooks that *I* like (not the drab brown the guy who lived here before had left)
... got a new hand towel and washcloth to spiffy the bathroom up
... a lot of other stuff (mostly groceries)
*got home and got everything scanned to my various apps ($3.70 Ibotta, $2.75 SavingStar, $.25 Shrink, $.25 Snap)
*got everything put away, and just finished a late lunch. Now am going to relax a bit until it's time for NE to come over (we're going out to a place called Pizza Ranch tonight - his treat!)
Yesterday I went for a 4.5 mile walk with some people from church. Overall, I got in over 14k steps!
I used the Charity Miles apps and earned $1.06 for a charity, and I also earned 40 bounts points - 20 for fitbit (14k steps) 10 for RunKeeper, and 10 for a weekend activity. I'm up to 590 bounts already. Sweet!
Now I just need to get my extra key to the cleaning lady so she can clean my place tomorrow.
SBs awarded the monthly bonuses early and my SB cc points also came through - so I now have about 5500 SBs. There are two Swagups (rebates) going live on the 14th though, so I'll be waiting til then. I could easily redeem $75 - $100 from Swagbucks this month. Wow.
I took a break from Pact for a few weeks in August, but started back with it this past week. Just on a smaller scale. The break was nice, but it will be good to have another avenue of earning money again.
I have been using two new apps the last few weeks. Both connect to my Fitbit and to Runkeeper.
Bounts is a UK based company which rewards you for every day you go over 7000steps or do a 20 minute+ GPS tracked walk/run/etc - if you upgrade (pay pound 9.99/yr) you can also earn more points by checking in at approved gyms.
The rewards available for US residents are limited, but still worth going for. A $5 Walmart card is 700bounts/points. I have 260 bounts already.
It's a nice easy addition to all the other things which I earn money with just by using my Fitbit and connecting the various apps. (If you're interested in this - we both can get 100 bonus points if you use my referral code - I don't want to post it here because it uses part of my last name. I will email the link to you though if interested.)
The second new app I just used for the first time yesterday is called CharityMiles.
You connect your fitbit (or other tracker) and something similar to Runkeeper. Then whenever you are getting ready to do a fitness activity you open it up and choose a charity from their list. Then start your activity. When you are finished, go back to the app and stop it.
Yesterday by walking 2.2 miles I earned $.56 for a charity which helps kids get books.
I do wish it was a little bit less involved (you have to choose a charity from the list each time. There isn't a way to save favorites.) But still, it's nice to know that at the same time I'm doing something for myself, I'm also doing a little something for someone else.
I did another shopping run last night - Walgreen's, Family Dollar, SuperSaver and Target.
Walgreen's - toothpaste and deodorant
Family Dollar - cereal (3 for 6, $1 off SavingStar app, $.20 off iBotta), new $10 Android phone
SuperSaver - tatertots, cream of mushroom soup, canned cat food (20 cans - two coupons used), can of Vegeburger, Morningstar corndogs (on sale!), misc.
Target - soda, Quaker granola bars ($1.50 iBotta, 10% Target app), Kellogs Nutri grain bars ($1 Checkout 51), Quorn ($2 iBotta), Amy's, misc.
**I discovered a new Amy's meal. Noodles w/cashew sauce and veggies. It is SO good. Target has it for 3.99. I bought that rather than getting something from Taco Bell. So much better!
I stumbled across the canned cat food at SuperSaver by accident. I'd planned on getting it at Target for $1.07 a can - coupons - but SuperSaver had them for $.98/can! They also have much cheaper frozen veggies than Walmart.
I have a ton of food and household products now in my pantry/fridge/freezer. Other than fresh fruit and veggies, I hopefully will not be spending much more on groceries / household this month.
*NE and I are doing dinner again tonight - tater tot casserole - which is why bought some of what I bought.
NEs laptop died on him yesterday. So I erased my iPad and reset it up so that he can use it until he gets a new laptop. I'm thinking about just letting him have it. All I ever use it for is to run paid video apps. I can accomplish the same thing on a $10 smartphone (like the one I bought at Family Dollar.) I'll have to see how much he likes it first though.
If he ends up not liking it, then I may just go ahead and sell it. It may fetch $50 or so possibly.
I plan on hitting the gym today. We'll see though ... didn't go to bed til after 2, and then Kari woke me up about 7 ... Thanks Kari. (Thankfully it is a 3 day weekend!)
Today I got to see what my new salary is with the recent cost of living raise (2.25%). With it, I now make about $.20/hour more than I did before I was downsized from my oil and gas job in 2009.
After work today I went to Target and to HyVee (a grocery store here.) When I submitted my Walmart receipt to the Savings Catcher, it gave me money back for the cat food - saying that they found it at HyVee for $2 cheaper.
Yeah ... it was a different kind. Same brand (Purina) but not Purina One Beyond. I still did buy two bags of it from HyVee because it was $.50 cheaper than Walmart (plus my $2 coupons of course.)
At Target I found the canned food (after asking for help from a store person) which was $.08 cheaper than the local grocery store - had a coupon Buy 8 get 2 free. I only used one coupon. I might go back and use my other 3. (I give Kari one can a week - her Sabbath treat.) I also bought a 3rd bag of her food ($2 coupon only usable in Target.)
I now have $12.50 in Ibotta rebates, $4.87 in Walmart Savings Catcher, and about $4 in other savings apps.
I can cash in the Ibotta anytime, but I think I'll wait til I get closer to the end of the month in case I decide to do any other rebates.
I am SO set on cat food right now it's ridiculous. I always buy the 3lb bags even though they probably aren't the best value money wise, but they also don't go stale before Kari gets through a bag. (I keep it in a plastic container .. but still, I think by the time we get to the bottom of it, it's starting to get stale.)
On my way home I almost stopped at Taco Bell. In fact, I did. But after waiting 6 minutes and still not being at the order board ... I decided to just go home. For the best.
With SBs giving out the monthly bonuses early today, I have over 3200 SBs! I'm going to wait til the 14th to cash out so I can use my 50SB rebate.
I'm not sure what is going to happen with my mom's planned trip out here. Brother told me yesterday he'd reimburse me for the hotel if I really can't get it refunded. (It can't be. It was prepaid.) So if mom ends up not coming out here, I'll still have a paid for hotel room here. Hmm ... maybe go and stay there anyway with NE for one night, and/or by myself for the other nights (at least Friday and Saturday.)
I hope we get this figured out soon because mom's supposed to be coming on the 17th!!
Brother says he doesn't want to nail down another date until "he doesn't feel like he's being manipulated." I'm tempted tell him that I already have plans for October and November, and so would rather not change the September plans. If he wants to come out and visit some other time, great, if not, that's up to him. But I can't keep my plans in limbo until he "feels not manipulated" :roll eyes:
Sorry for the venting. Just feeling so frustrated by this situation. I kind of wish he'd never suggested the idea in the first place .. back in February???
If you like free trashbags, and even making a little money on them ... then check this out. On Swagbucks right now there is a deal where you buy 1 (any) Hefty trashbags and get 400 SBs or buy two (any) and get 1000 Swagbucks. All you have to do is take a picture of your receipt and a picture of the product(s) and email them to firstname.lastname@example.org. 60 days later you will get your SBs.
Now here is how you can make money on this deal. Currently in the coupon section of SBs there is a $1.50 off ANY Hefty trashbags. Use two of them, and add in the $10 of Swagbucks, and you can purchase up to $13 worth of trashbags for free! Not too shabby if I might say so. (The 1000 SBs could actually be worth more than $10 if you use them towards one of the discounted gift cards. I don't get them, so for me it's worth $10.)
Last night I did a September shopping trip. Yes, I know it's fudging things a bit, but 1. I won't have the time or energy to do this kind of shopping trip on Tuesday, and 2. Some of the rebates/offers I wanted were expiring on the 29th.
So I went to Walmart, Target and Walgreens. I used the shopping apps: iBotta, Shrink, SavingStar, Checkout51, Snap, Walgreens Balance Rewards, and the Target one. I also used ReceiptPal and ReceiptHog.
I spent $88 at Walmart after coupons, $16.10 at Target after coupons and discounts, and $43.31 at Walgreen's after coupons and discounts.
I earned $9 in rebates from iBotta. I will be getting $10 back from Swagbucks (Hefty deal). I also earned about 1.60 in cashback from the other shopping apps.
I am now set for toilet paper, peanut butter, jelly, trash bags, flaxseed, dry cat food, frozen veggies, etc. for a good long time. At Walgreen's I got Claratin D and Flonase - am going to try Claratin to see if it works any better than Allegra ...
I do plan on going back to Target (the SuperTarget this time)to get another bag of cat food with a coupon they gave me, and canned cat food. (Purina One Beyond)
I was supposed to earn a 6k point bonus from Walgreen's for a $30 purchase - it printed on my receipt, but the points aren't there. I'm going to give it a couple days and then contact customer service.
Yesterday afternoon I was FINALLY able to get into my hotmail account. So I was able to get my $5 AGC from Bing, and do all but one Mypoints emails (it expired.) I also was able to resign into Bing (and changed my main email address.)
Today I ordered from Amazon my pea protein powder, two wall plate hangers, and a pair of haircutting scissors. After the $30 in AGC credits, plus $2.68 in Discover cashback, it cost $12.98.
The plate hangers are to hang two decorative plates I have. The scissors are ones I saw recommended for DIY ponytail haircuts ... which with a bit of trepidation I am going to try.
I'm trying to decide whether to take the $12.98 from the Household category or the Beauty category, or maybe split the amount between the two.
If you're interested in any of the shopping apps and would like to try them out (and help me out ) just let me know and I'll send you my referral link(s). Ibotta has a team thing where you can earn extra bonuses depending on how much rebates/earnings your team does. All of them do have fresh fruits/veggies, and non-branded items options (not a lot ... but some.)
This morning I am finally back to the weight I was at before my little staycation. Amazing how quickly the pounds go back on, and how much more time it takes for them to come off again.
Something pretty cool on Thursday -- a delivery person from Jimmy John's came by the office to give us free sandwiches. She asked something I never thought I'd hear ... any vegetarians? Sweet! The sandwich was pretty good too.
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