So ... the positive. DH has FINALLY found his all weather vehicle. After over 1 1/2 years of looking.
A 2000 Honda CRV for $4k. We now have FIVE vehicles. We WILL be selling one ... I just am not pushing it right now with Sunny and more fun with SIL's estate.
I might even be willing to drive this thing. It is in nice shape - nice enough that DH plans to put in some of his numerous speaker systems to try out.
I'm just glad to not have DH say - lets drive to Des Moines to look at such and such car - not call till we're nearly there - and find the car is sold. Or look at it and find its rubbish. Done with that!
I am seriously hating my job right now. One of my responsibilities is dealing with lost and found. A few weeks ago my supervisor and someone else cleaned out the lunchroom and threw out the umbrella box w/ a month's worth of umbrellas. No mention of this to me. No asking if I wanted to do something else with them. I found out only because I noticed the box was missing. When I brought it up to my supervisor, she just basically shrugged and said the lunchroom was overrun with stuff and the umbrellas were old ( time wise) anyway.
This on top of how almost *every time* I go away for a few days, I come back to find my space rearranged or the work flow rearranged to a way that suits my supervisor. This irritates me to no end, although I try to tell myself that she probably thinks she's doing something nice for me.
Then there's dealing with the people in dispatch and lost items. They've trained multiple new people, and some work with me, and some want to do as little as possible.
I get that we are not responsible for lost items ... but when someones lost something, they *don't* want to hear that.
I don't call down for everything I get calls about. I try to deflect as much as possible. Especially since I never know who is actually going to answer in dispatch.
So today I have this mom call about her daughter leaving a $1300 violin on the bus. I call down asking for dispatch to contact the driver. I basically get blown off. I try to tell mom that we are getting in contact with the driver and she can check back on Monday after 8. (because its 3:40 and I have no idea if or when I'm going to get a call back from dispatch)
Mom wants to leave her info so I can call her - I have to tell her that I can't do that (Supervisor's policy)
I do find out when the bus will be back - so tell her she can wait for it at Dispatch in case the violin is on the bus. (not our normal policy, but was ok'd by another supervisor due to a fiasco we had a few months ago with a family heirloom violin stolen on a bus)
Mom calls principal unhappy with my not helping her.
Principal calls the supervisor/school liaison to find out the deal. Asks me what's going on. I admittedly did not react very well. Was so frustrated with not being able to get answers and then getting the blame!
Got the bus driver supervisor to call dispatch - of course he didn't get blown off. The violin was secured.
Mom calls again and I seriously didn't want to speak to her. I was just ready to have the day over!
This is just ONE example. There's another dispatch that gives me a one word answer and hangs up on me.
Then thanks to the latest iOS and Android updates killing all 32 bit apps, the past month I have had SO many phone calls from people complaining about "our" apps not working. They're 3rd party apps people! We have NOTHING to do with them! I'm sorry if you paid $4 to upgrade it - but you didn't pay us that money. Most of them just whine and moan for 5 - 7 minutes, but there have been at least 5 who have gotten totally irate.
Today I had one call me back asking if we could help her get her money back or figure out how to stop the payment. I asked her when she bought it - she said sometime last year and she couldn't remember if it was a yearly fee or a monthly. I was incredulous ... but told her that while we can't do anything about it, I would suggest she keeps an eye out on her account and if she sees a charge, dispute it!
I tracked the calls for a few weeks and got my supervisor to bug the main honcho enough that the links to the apps were removed from our main website. (There was a disclaimer, but who reads disclaimers?)
DH has suggested I sit down with my supervisor and come up with a written out list of needs/expectations wrt lost and found / dispatch. Something we give to anyone working dispatch.
Hopefully by Monday I won't be so ticked off and can approach the matter calmly.
Sorry for the vent.
Tomorrow after church I'm supposed to be going to the Center for People in Need to volunteer at their Thanksgiving give away thing. I know I'll have fun, but right now I really don't want to go. I just want to sleep and be away from people. I'm peopled out.
Viewing the 'Work Related' Category
So ... the positive. DH has FINALLY found his all weather vehicle. After over 1 1/2 years of looking.
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.
So it was brought to my attention that I haven't posted here for a while. Oops.
I had a much longer post typed up, then firefox crashed on me ... so ....
*Still losing weight (*slowly*)
*Still doing the whole foods plant based / limited oil, salt, refined sugar lifestyle
(not 100%, but close to it.)
*Had to have a ring guard put in my wedding / engagement ring last week so I wouldn't lose it -
lost two ring sizes!
*Will be getting my retroactive pay on Oct 12 for the year our contract was in limbo. I'm estimating it
to be around $800 - 1000 depending on how the overtime works out.
*Been dealing a lot with sick kitties the past month. Antibiotic shots, steroid shots, antihisimine pills ... Fun $$$
It does look as though we might be on the other end of it now though.
* Fence guy has completely abandoned us and his tools. DH sent him a text over 3 weeks ago telling him that when he comes
by to pick up his tools, to please bring us cash for the difference between what we paid him already, and
what has actually been purchased/man hours worked. Zip. Silence. Guess we have some extra tools now.
I signed up for MoviePass and used it twice this month. I would have used it more, but there weren't any movies I wanted to
see last week, and this week the ones I want to see are only at the downtown theater. So .. maybe on Monday after work.
(I saw Wind River and Home Again - liked both of them.)
Ok, I can't really think of anything else right now. I'll try to not let so much time go between posts.
So ... DH got some discouraging news last week. His shoulder that he'd been having physical therapy on - which wasn't helping - has two shriveled up rotator cuff tendons. The only option offered was cortizone shots 2x a year. Otherwise, just live with it.
So he won't be off work for 2 -6 weeks, but he now has to live with two messed up shoulders.
Two months after writing the check to the fence guy, we have progressed to having the fence posts delivered. No holes dug, no posts put up, etc.
What a lesson this is for us.
I am now down 38lbs from January. 20lbs more and I'll be at my lowest weight in 15 years.
I am thinking of looking for a plant based doctor to see if they can help me figure out why I still have little energy and am still having sleep issues.
I watched the eclipse today. I knew I wanted to do it, but I had no idea how amazing it really would be. I had almost decided against doing it after reading articles expounding the dangers. Then I took a two second glance at a 1/4 covered sun, and was hooked!
I found myself almost compelled to look up, even when I didn't have my glasses on. It was a strange pull.
I'm going to be getting a standing desk at work! I just have to go over to purchasing and choose what I want.
I'm hoping this will make me move more.
Patient Saver - I watched this video today which I think you may like. It's interviews with a number of plant based doctors (Greger isn't included though)
I found it fairly interesting.
I had 3 hours of overtime yesterday welcoming uni students to school. Lots of fun
Thursday night after giving our furkids their 2x weekly wet food meal, our Sunny girl lost her meal .. w/blood too.
Today at noon was the first appointment I could get. She didn't throw up any more (that I could see) so the vet didn't think it was something to worry about. However, he did notice an upper respiratory infection - and gave me some meds for that.
Sunny has been curled up on my lap sleeping since then.
The vet visit cost $67
I got 4 hours of overtime this week. I won't know until Tuesday if the new payrate is in effect yet or not.
Next Sunday I'm working the Big R Welcome for local uni students. That'll sure be fun.
Thursday night we ordered takeout for the first time in a long time. A local Chinese place that had 4 options with no salt/sugar/oil/msg!! I was amazed. I got steamed veggies with tofu, then made brown rice for myself.
They accidentally made my order "homestyle" with an unknown sauce. DH noticed this, and got them to remake my dish - we got to keep both. DH ate the homestyle - yay! he ate veggies! - and said he'd get it again (liked the sauce on the broccoli)
I finished the last episode of Downton Abbey yesterday. Somehow I hadn't seen season 5 or 6 till this month.
Our fence guy is STILL stalling. He's put in maybe 10 hours worth of work so far. Supposedly our supplies will be coming Monday. We're not holding our breath.
Ever since my DH injured his so-called "good" shoulder, I have been contemplating what would happen if he couldn't work anymore. I realized we would be in a *very* tight spot. Yes, we have reserves which we could repurpose for daily expenses, and could cut into the stocks ... But that just feels like a short term solution with long term consequences - since the reserves and the stocks are for long term needs.
So, after a lot of thought and juggling of numbers on my part, and then the ensuing discussion with DH, we have made a mutual goal of fully funding both of our ROTH's by the end of this year. $12,000.
We already had $3555 set aside for whenever we opened DH's Roth. Then I felt comfortable putting the $1900 we had set aside for the EF. I also decided that as much as I would love to do a cattery design in the cat room/family room, that by the time we had saved enough to do it, we'd probably be down two cats. So ... I'm putting the $455 set aside for that towards our goal.
That just leaves $6,090 to reach our goal. Or, an average of $1,000/month starting in July.
We are cutting our spending money from $400 to $0. We are cutting the Date Night category from $100 to $60. Groceries will go from $300 to $200. I am also stopping the $25/mo Extra Principal. Plus, I will be stopping my extra contributions to my 457 at work - this will add approximately $140 back into the budget. There also is the $185/mo we've already been setting aside for DH.
That puts us at $890.
Which just leaves $110 to fund each month.
Our plan is to take 1/2 of whatever we make (profit) in side jobs or overtime and put it towards the goal. The other 1/2 will go towards our own spending money.
If we reach the $12,000 goal early, then we will decide what we want to do.
DH has also agreed to sell the non-functioning Honda! Not paying the title/registration for that thing will add back at least $100 which we can also put towards the goal. The sale price of the Honda though I think we'll put all into DH's car replacement category.
The purpose of all this is to get as much money put away as possible in a place that will most likely outearn the 2.5% of our current checking, and even the 5% of the Northpointe checking, but still be assessable if circumstances warrant it. (Contributions only.)
Best case scenario we won't have to touch any of it for ten or eleven years.
I'm going to be doing a new budget in YNAB to reflect all this, plus to cleanup the current budget.
*I just thought about something - we have probably $200 in cashback rewards on our cards - that could go towards our goal too.
June Snowflakes as of 6/17
June Snowflakes so far:
Swagbucks - $25 Walmart; $25 Paypal; $25 PP
Pact - $10
Earnhoney - $5; $5
Earnably - $10
Yoolotto - $6.75
MyPoints - $25 PP
FetchRewards - $10 in Walmart gift cards
**On Swagbucks there is a deal where you contribute $9/month for 4 months to WCF (World Wildlife Fund) and then 60 days after the 4th contribution you get 6500 SBs. So, a $29 moneymaker (plus you get a nice tote bag for grocery shopping.) Someone on the FB Swagbucks Swaggernauts group verified this offer with Swagbucks.
Dietbet Round 5 weigh in was today - and I made it again! Now just one more month to go for the final big payout!
On iBotta there is a current bonus called Dash for Dollars. You only have to complete ONE branded rebate by the 19th to get a $5 bonus!
At work we are doing a meal train for the dispatcher who is going through chemo right now.
I was thinking of doing a meal of corn pudding, green beans, mashed potatoes and brownies. My DH thinks there isn't enough protein. There's cheese in the pudding, but I can't think of anything else that would go with it.
Dh suggested lasagna .. but to me that would be so much more work, and more expensive too since I already have most of what I need for the pudding meal.
If you read the website "doctor of credit" you probably already know about this. Just in case you don't ...
The Northpointe bank in Michigan offers 5% interest on up to $10,000. Direct deposit is not required. You do have to make 15 debit transactions each month, and either a ACH withdrawal or deposit of at least $100.
This is a great opportunity for those who may not have direct deposit available (or who can only have it sent to one place at a time like me) to get in on a place offering a decent interest rate.
I opened an account this past Sunday, and just got the welcome email today ... so they are a bit slow. (You can do this all online - no matter where in US.)
My new iPhone came in a few days ago, but I didn't get to pick it up til Tuesday night. It has a 6 digit passcode which is hard to get used to - I keep starting my old passcode ... I got the SE, so my old otterbox works with it, and I don't have to worry about it not fitting in my purse pocket, etc.
Having a new phone is letting me see just how bad my battery was on my old one. This morning both phones started at 100% battery. They were running videos ... within 90 minutes my old phone was on 40% and my new phone was about 91%... What a difference!
I decided to not go with my points based plan for housekeeping. I came to the realization that I probably wouldn't follow through on it - so can't expect hubby to. I did get him to agree to go to his first physical therapy appointment - tomorrow - I made the first appointment, but its up to him to make more.
Tomorrow I'm putting up the posters for the Food Bank drive. Here's hoping we beat last year's numbers.
Well the one bright spot right now is that I have one 4 of 4 rounds of Dietbet - winnings are about $90 so far. I just need $25 more to recoup my initial bet, then the rest is gravy. I have lost about 26lbs from my initial weigh in. Nobody seems to have noticed yet, but I can tell a difference in how my clothes fit.
For larger people like me, it seems like it takes a loss of more like 50 lbs or more for anyone to venture to guess ... are you losing weight?
Work ... ugh. Ugh ugh ugh. I don't know if interviewing is really a good thing or not ... it gives me hope of getting out of there for something better .. so I start getting irritated even more by stupid things.
I thought I was to hear back about the job by yesterday. The fact that I haven't makes me feel like its probably a no. I hope I at least get the courtesy of an email.
DH found a leaf blower he wanted on the Sears website Thursday. So on our way to dinner we stopped by. The in store price was more. I couldn't pull up the online price on my phone. DH was really irritated and didn't want to bother talking to anyone.
Friday I found the offer he'd found and took screenshots and printed them out. Then after work and making the bank deposit I stopped at Sears. I told a sales person what I was looking for and asked him if he could honor the online price. He cheerfully said he could - then thanked me for being pleasant. He'd apparently had a lot of unhappy people to deal with that day.
I told him I could relate ...
So .. the leaf blower in store price was $59.95. Online price was $47.95. I had $7.03 in Shop Your Way points - walked out with it for just under $43.
My DH was quite happy when he came out to the kitchen on his way to work to see I'd gotten it.
I did call my mom for Mother's Day. It went fairly well. I bit my tongue hard when she told me she and paramour had both sold their cars and bought one new one. I badly wanted to ask if her name was on the title ... If she does ever decide to leave this guy *for real* she's kind of painted herself into a corner. Sigh. She's an adult.
I started a new money making website - Earnably. Pretty good so far.
Almost forgot! On Wednesday DH and I bought a ladder from Menards. DH started cleaning our gutters by standing on the third rung of the ladder and moving the ladder constantly. After about twenty minutes of me watching him do this, I offered to get up on the roof and finish the job.
Ii have no fear of heights, while DH does. It was my first time on a roof - and it was a little nerve wracking. But I got used to it quickly. It was actually quite fun ... until I had to get OFF the roof.
DH held the ladder tightly for me and talked me down. Whew! Now our gutters are clean!
Thanks everyone for your well wishes. I think I did fairly well. I definitely was in a better frame of mind than my last interview.
If I'm offered the job, I think I might take it ...
It sounds like I'd be busier, have more computer related projects ... and can wear jeans everyday! Not to mention a bit over $2/hr raise and it's slightly closer to home.
I should know by Thursday or Friday.
-----So I got home early on Thursday ... DH wanted to go buy a lawnmower off Craigslist. We did that, and then got home and I raked leaves out of the bushes/side areas and DH started mowing / mulching. Unfortunately I didn't realize that along with the leaves, I was getting rocks.
We now need to replace the glass in our front storm door. Oops.
This morning I went to feed the cats and realized one was missing! The best we can figure is that she (Sunny) got out around midnight when DH went out to his truck for something.
We spent close to 45 minutes this am searching, and I spent another 90 minutes this evening looking. We posted on Craigslist, Nextdoor and Facebook. I also contacted the Humane society.
Sunny is one of the two elderly cats with bathroom issues. Still, she is one of the sweetest, most precious cats. I am so sad.
We also put one of the litterboxes outside. This is supposed to help them smell home from a mile away.
Here's our Sunny girl:
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!
Thursday night DH asked me if I'd help him with the meal because he didn't know what he was doing. So we worked together on it - I worked on the grape tomatoes, he cut up the olives, capers, oregano, and garlic. (If I would've realized how long the tomatoes would take, I would've used the Mini Bullet.)
Like with the risotto, I felt there were some key steps missing in the directions - things you had to guess at.
I unfortunately burned the pine nuts - which dissapointed both of us.
The recipe didn't call for the tomato mixture to be cooked - but neither of us fancied eating raw garlic or tomatoes.
We added a package of mixed veggies.
Overall it was edible, but not something either of us would try again.
So, even if I wanted to pay for meals from Home Chef, these two meals would definitely discourage me from the idea. Glad we got them for free.
Angel hair Pine Nut Puttanesca
I had my yearly review at work on Wednesday. Even though my unions contract isn't signed, I still am getting the next step in pay. It makes about a $.51/hour raise. Better than nothing.
I also found out that I still get my PCH days even without th signed contract. So I put in for vacation for April 20 - 28. 5 vacation days, an 2 PCH.
We need to figure out what we'll do with the cats while we're gone. 4 days away is one thing, 8 - 10 is another.
We did get paid back the $150 for the dog's meds. DH went over to the owners house Wednesday night.
We still haven't listed anything on eBay. DH couldn't find the cord to connect his camera to my computer, so has ordered another one from eBay. ($2)
We're planning on going to Tico's for Valentine's on Thursday. (I'll get Swagbucks for it through Swagbucks local app)
I cut DHs hair this week and he felt it made him look bald in the front. So he had me give him a buzz cut instead. I'm going to see if the daughter of one of the light duty ladies would be willing to give me a few pointers in cutting men's hair. I've watched youtube videos, but I may need more than that.
I won't go into it - but take TWO phone calls in a row of 15+ minutes at the end of a day where I had lots of sales which needed to be reconciled ... and with the 13 minutes I had left I could reconcile the total from just the amounts to the cash/checks/credit cards but NOT to the actual passes. If I'd had another five or six minutes I might have done it - but Union regs say I have to be done at 4:30, and I'd already pushed it 3 minutes.
That plus multiple annoying other phone calls, and I was not in a good place.
Driving home I really wanted to stop and get junk food. But I didn't.
I got an email from Citi saying they had No Record of my redeeming points for a check. Ummm...
So I called and redeemed AGAIN - this time for $650. I also converted my card to the double cash back card. Hopefully in time to avoid the annual fee of the Thank You card.
I had ordered some things from Amazon on Sunday due to arrive Wednesday. When looking at the email today, I realized I'd somehow put my old name and address!!
So I contacted Amazon, and they're sending a replacement order! Sweet! (I then went into my address book and deleted the outdated info.)
A budget meeting funny .... Last night DH and I had filled all the categories except the fun group. I saw there was still $552! Both DH and I were in disbelief because we'd put some large amounts in several categories. So we went through all of them again to be sure we hadn't skipped any.
We got to house maintenance and found out that I'd entered 30 instead of 300! That one little zero makes a big difference!
I'm going to wait til Wednesday to do a monthly recap - but lets just say I'm happy with groceries.
So .. DH brought me his 3rd paycheck for December this morning when he got home along with the paystub.
I'd printed out my paystub at work last week.
Then after getting some more sleep ... I got on TaxAct and entered our info as much as I could without all the forms.
OMW! I really hope that once I have the proper forms it will look a lot better!
To buy our house, I sold some stocks and took a distribution from my ROTH (all contributions/5+ years old.)
Our combined income just from our jobs this year was a little bit more than I had figured when deciding how much to sell, but that doesn't account for the huge tax bill.
Nearly $4k between Federal and State!
They are showing the stock sale as Interest income and not Capital Gains!! If it were just capital gains, almost all of it would be taxed at 0%. (Possibly all of it.) So this just doesn't make any sense to me at all.
If this really is the case ... then there goes our fence. Ugh.
I seem to have deleted my budget for the first few months of the year before DH and I started joint budgeting. So ... these figures are for July - December - once we'd both moved into the house and totally combined finances.
Mortgage - 2633 (loan payments only)
Extra balance payments - 200
Natural Gas - 217 Average - 36.27
*Electric - 819.29 Average - 135.40
*This included a missed payment due to moving, etc. prior to July - so really, 7 months worth.
*Phone 484.84 Average - 80.70
*This includes a $200+ bill for DH when he was still in his apartment without WiFi
Internet/Cable - 365.65 -- Avg - 60.94
Water - 214.60 (billed bi-monthly) Avg - 35.77
Netflix (4 months) 42.74 - Avg - 7.14
Groceries - 1903.90 Avg - 317.32
Car Gas - 1554.80 - Avg - 259.13
Oops Tax (Accident Ticket) -- 151.95
Car Insurance (DH only - 6 month prem) 177
Car Maintenance - 1351.51 --- Avg - 225.25
Clothing (minus my $170 purchase) - 182.74 Avg - 30.38
Computer Replacement - 284.88 Avg - 47.41
Phone/Garmin Replacement - 173.81 Avg - 28.97
Home/Yard Maintenance - 2311.10 Avg - 385.20
Household General - 1039.23 Avg - 173.17
Medical - Non Deductible - 146.97-- Avg --24.50
Pets - Cats - Food/Litter - 375.63 -- Avg -- 62.60
Pets - Cats - Medical - 542.28 --- Avg --90.40
Pets - Non Cats - Food/Shelter - 114.62 -- Avg - 19.10
Pets - Non Cats - Medical - 38.54 -- Avg - 6.42
Quality of Life
Vacation - 237.28 -- Avg --39.55
Fitness (gym memberships) 293.76 -- Avg -- 48.96
Just for fun
Laura birthday (includes concert) - 165.77 --Avg -27.63
Scott Birthday - 103.94 Avg - 17.32
Date Night (eating out/take out) 226.84 -- Avg - 37.81
Student Loan (5 months) - 261.05 -- Avg -- 43.51
Medical Debt payments - 2390 -- Avg - 398.33
DH has been talking more and more about needing to find a different job which won't be so hard on his knees/hips - something like a night auditor at a hotel. I'm okay with that, but I'm thinking that to prepare for the drop in income once that becomes necessary, that we need to scale back on some other things to create a good buffer.
I'm not really sure where we can cut back much though. One area I'm going to try is to cut back on grocery spending. Maybe see if DH would be willing to set the thermostat to 60 degrees (heat) (is at 65 now.)
We've got some big expenditures in 2017 though ... fencing our yard / removing trees/bushes / purchasing a winter vehicle someday for DH / an extended roadtrip to CA to see Grandma/brother, etc.
Plus, we have the goal of eliminating the student loan debt by December. Approximately $4200.
I'd like to say, well, let's just live on one of our incomes and put the rest into future savings. But ... just filling up the categories of immediate obligations puts us slightly over what DH brings in. That's before putting money into car replacement/ car maintenance/ house maintenance, Pets costs, etc.
The only way I can see us actually being able to put away significant amounts is if DH actually starts to sell his electronics.
Tonight is our budget meeting for January/2017. So, this may be a large point of discussion.
Okay, my 2017 goals. (so far)
1. Pay off DH's student loans by December. (Approx. $4200)
2. Reduce average grocery spending to $250/month
3. Discuss the amount of needed buffer for DH to take a different low-paying job with less stress on knees, etc.
(Car costs and gas costs would be exponentially smaller with a night auditor job .. but the income would probably drop at least $5 - 6 /hour.)
1. Increase fruit/vegetable intake to an average of 35 servings a week.
2. Reduce added sugar - Buy/eat added sugar items only 2x a week. No more than one servings worth.
3. Reduce processed foods / foods that come in packages. (Not sure how to make this a measurable goal)
4. Do 30 minutes of strength training each week.
5. Complete 8 StepBets successfully.
1. Create a doable cleaning schedule and DO IT.
2. Actively play with the cats ten minutes a day.
3. Limit computer time during the work week after work to two hours. Limit computer time on the weekend to 3 hours. (Not including budgeting time.)
4. Don't get sucked in to Mama Drama.
5. Less Overthinking/Guessing negatively/More Positivity
6. Keep an active lookout for a different job.
DH told me on Monday that he wanted to send his stepdad a card with a few photos from the wedding. He had supposedly hurt himself that morning and didn't come.
I was surprised, but happy to do it.
So on the way home tonight I stopped at Walgreen's to use their photo kisok.
When I opened the app, my phone which was at 24%, went dead. The photo lady told me I could plug into the kisok and charge my phone while using the kisok.
So .. I tried that. My phone wouldn't charge. Finally, the lady let me use a charger plugged into the wall. My phone came back on at 24%! Then went dead as soon as I opened the app.
Again, I got my phone ack on. But this time just tried using the kisok. But I couldn't get my phone to connect to it.
At that point I gave up and came home. Where I placed an order at CVS which I'll pock up tomorrow. I got 12 pictures (2 sets of 6) for $2 after a coupon.
I hope DH likes the photos, because so far they've been a royal pain.
I'm looking forward to our dinner out tomorrow night. We'll be eating at one of the oldest restaurants in Lincoln - Billy's. We went there last year for my birthday, and both loved it. So now for a repeat.
(We have a restaurant's.com coupon for $25 off - good thing, because it's not cheap.)
On Tusday there was a fire in Omaha at one of Sprint's substation's? It knocked out cell and data service in Omaha, Lincoln and surrounding areas for most of the day.
It also affected us at the bus station - the gps system to track the buses is based off of Sprint's towers. It basically made it so what is already a finicky program, nearly unusable.
Here's hoping it'll be working tomorrow!
I'm taking off Friday. I plan on seeing Hacksaw Ridge in the morning (matinee), go to the ABC and see if they have Wham yet, shop at shopkpo for some sweaters, and take my car to have its brakes checked. Mostly fun stuff, with something necessary thrown in.
I hadn't been sure just how much it would be, so I'd been setting aside $150/month for it. Looks like that was underestimating a bit. Our first payment is due in March for $1106 and the remaining $1106 is due in August.
I currently have $900 set aside for it, so by March we'll be fine. However, we won't be ready for the August payment at our current savings.
We need to save $1300 more by August. So instead of $150/month, I think we should be putting aside 163/month. Maybe I'll make it 170/mo to have a round number.
Starting in September, we'll need to save $185/mo (rounding up)
I can pay online - so will have to find out if there is a CC fee and if I can find a good sign up bonus to negate it.
*We don't have an escrow account.
I got a "refund" check from my former Internet company which had charged me for a month of service I hadn't asked for. Of course the check is in my maiden name - misspelled. I don't know if I can cash it, and am not sure it's worth the hassle for $15.xx *They over credited me somehow.
Speaking of banking hassles ...
On Friday I stopped at our credit union to deposit DH's paycheck and tip money into our joint account. I've done this nearly weekly for almost 8 months!
As soon as the teller looked at DHs check, she said "we don't have a signature on file for him, nor an id!" What are you talking about lady?! He signed a whole bunch of documents and had his id scanned when we opened our account! Besides, I'm DEPOSITING the check into our JOINT account - not cashing it! Plus, look at our balance - do you really want to tick me off?
Ok. I didn't say all of that to her ...
She left and got someone from the back who showed her how to find his signature from the opening documents. Then tells me he needs to come in so they can get his id.
I scoffed out loud and told her - good luck with that. Besides you should have his id on file already. It's not our fault if you don't have it in the right places!
The only think I can think of is that she was a newbie teller. Or maybe it's just that branch that has annoying tellers. I've had two annoying interactions with the credit union - and both have happened at that branch. I only go there because its close to Planet Fitness!
If it weren't for the 2.5% interest rate .. I'd seriously be looking elsewhere.
One week left for my current Stepbet. I'm not sure if I'm going to take a little break or not yet.
I'm still holding strong on the no soda. However, my junkfood/chocolate consumption is really, really bad. So bad, I've gained back at least five pounds.
I wish I could find the same willpower with chocolate that I'm having with soda. If I could, it'd make my exercise more beneficial.
Sigh. Maybe turning 41 on Thursday will be a turning point. Probably not.
Big non-surprise - got an email letting me know I wasn't hired for the job I interviewed for. Sigh. It'd be a bad time to leave my boss now anyway. We're still getting everything worked out with the new routes and tweaks to the schedules.
Had a new light duty person start on Friday. Just as I was enjoying having my space back. She's nice and all ... but will be there at least a few months...
Spent more money at the Vet. I managed to get a urine sample for Kari - the vet said it looked better, but the UTI wasn't cleared up. When I told him what a difficult time I'd had gyving her her pills, he suggested an injection. So .. that's what we did. Not sure if i's helping any yet or not.
One of our cats has taken to bullying her. Multiple times I'm startled awake to the sound of her mountain lioness scream as she's chased through the house or cornered.
I really wish I knew what to do to make it better.
DH and I had our December budget meeting Thursday night. I d smhing pretty cool to discuss with him.
The rewards points for the Chase Freedom account had finally hit - and I redeemed for $182!
As we'd discussed before, all credit card cash rewards would be pt towards debt. So I added the 182 to the 300 already allocated for December.
The exciting news was that due to DH making a bit extra in November, we had a little extra play money to decide on. The balance left on the medical (no interest) debt and the balance in our repayment category was just over $200!
So ... DH and I agreed to use the bit of extra to completely fill up the debt repayment category - as our Christmas gift to each other.
Then, in January we;re going to focus on our 2017 gift - paying off the student loans!
I plan on using CC bonuses to help with that (which is why the money is just sitting for now. Ready for action.)
We really could pay them off more quickly if we cut back on some things .. but I'm okay with a year from now.
I had to call CVS again today - my new card hadn;t arrived yet, and my app missing all my coupons ...
Turns out that whomever I talked to last tine messed up. The person I spoke with today was able to fix it, and help me change the card in my app.
I think they sent me $3 as a sorry ...
Crazy busy week at work this week. Free bus fare ended on Thursday. So EVERYONE came to buy their December pass this week, Around $2500 in sales just at our office. (Normal in a week - maybe $800-1k)
Kari was a pain the first two days of pills, the expensive grain free wet food which she used to chow on - she turned her nose up at. So ,,, Friskies Pate it is.
I bought a pill grinder .. since I'll be giving her the lysine for the forseeable future. Much easier than the back of a spoon.
I have 3 spaghetti squash ... I'd never had it before - and neither DH nor I were too impressed with it (just roasting and eating the strands) I don't want them to go to waste ... but haven;t found a interesting recipes for them yet,
I had my interview on Tuesday afternoon. I ended up NOT changing clothes because by the time I found a parking spot, I only had time to put on makeup and skeedaddle.
There were two interviewers - my potential boss and a potential co-worker.
The job sounds so way up my alley! I *think* they liked me ... hopefully my many "you knows" and "ums" didn't turn them off.
I'd have to learn a lot of new computer programs - one of the aspects of the job is being a Jill of All Trades - so I could take over any responsibility in the office if someone's sick or on vacation.
I sent both of them a thank you note today (handwritten) through Interoffice mail. (Hoping that wasn't a faux paux - using IO mail to send a note ...)
About two months ago I bought an 8 oz package of a product called soy curls. It sat in my cupboard till about three weeks ago when I finally decided to make something with it! I did a recipe called "Barbeque'd soy curls"
I made the mistake of telling my DH that they tasted nasty just plain and rehydrated. He wasn't willing to try them, even after I told him that the recipe was decent, when you added some mustard and cheese ...
I ate 3 meals out of it, and then froze the rest. This past weekend I reheated it and ate a 4th meal of it. There was still a good bit left (plus some broccoli.) I'd planned on eating it tonight for dinner.
So tonight I came home, fed the cats, cleaned the litter boxes, put my lunch together for tomorrow, got the dry ingredients ready for my smoothie, emptied the trash in the bathroom and office, started a load of laundry ... and then opened the fridge to get my dinner.
Only it was missing!
My DH apparently saw it in the fridge and wondered what it was, and then ate a few bites ... and the rest was history. So, I guess I will be getting some more Soy Curls. (I had planned on not getting them again.)
Tomorrow night is the Trans Siberian Orchestra Concert!!!!!! I'm just a *wee* bit excited.
We're going to be in a hurry, so will be doing a quick stop at a Hardee's for dinner. It will still be a treat, because L town has no Hardee's. (I love their Mushroom Swiss burger w/o the burger. DH teases me he's going to contact them to find out what the sauce is made with - I told him NOT ON HIS LIFE to ruin it for me like he did with cornbread stuffing (uses chicken broth ...) For some things, I'd just rather not know.
I forgot to mention - I won $9.67 in my Stepbet, and just started a new one on Monday. It's amazing how motivating losing $40 of my limited spending money motivates me to get my steps in!
DH and I got back around 9 pm on Friday. The main purpose of the trip was to buy a car.
Guess what? We didn't buy a car. We looked at a grand total of .. drum roll please ... 1 car. On the way home in Davenport, Iowa.
We even spent an extra day there than we'd planned - due to neither of us looking forward to driving back Thursday night. Good thing too, because both of us were in bed sound asleep by 9 pm on Thursday ...
We accomplished two things - DH bought a sub woofer (focal something or other) which he says he'll make 3x what he paid (assuming he ever gets around to actually *Selling* anything ...) and I had the privilege to meet one of our Chicago SA'ers. (I forgot to ask you if it was okay to say we met!)
That almost made the trip worthwhile by itself.
So ... we spent a total of about $300 on our 3 day trip - 2 nights at a below average Motel 6 where we had to PAY for wifi - which only worked on ONE device, eating out, and gas.
We both started the trip out a little bit on the sleep deprived side - me due to staying up late watching the election results (gag!) and DH just couldn't get to sleep. We were both pretty fried by the time we had to do another 8 1/2 hour drive back home ...
I am so completely tired of the car search. There's no way I'm going to do another trip like this - where we're spending all our time either waiting for Craigslist people to email us back or call us back ...
And it may be that I won't be able to take any more vacation days nor sick days for 6 months or so ...
I got a call for an interview for the library office specialist position!! It's on Tuesday at 4.
Now I just have to figure out how to get away from the office an hour early ... I'm not sure if the doctor visit excuse will work because my supervisor knows that I had a doctor's appt on Wednesday morning.
Also, I really would rather not lie. I'm going to try just saying I had an appointment come up unexpectedly (which is true) - but knowing her, she's going to want more info.
This is the only day I can do it, because she's going to be out for a week and a half with her husband's hip replacement surgery.
.... If I can get away for this, I'm planning on getting a haircut at an actual hair salon and probably a manicure too. I'm also trying to figure out how to deal with my wardrobe. If I go to work dressed nicer than usual with makeup, etc., AND have a mysterious "appointment" that will be a dead give away.
If it's meant to be, it'll work out.
Anyone have any idea - if you are switching positions, but still within city government, you start a new 6 month probation. But I'm not sure if that probation is the same as when you are hired initially? For example, would I lose my health insurance for 3 months??? And my retirement benefits? etc? I obviously can't ask this of anyone I know in the office ...
Just 3 days left of my Stepbet. It's looking like the earnings will be around $10. I'm planning on doing another one, but not until after DH and I get back from Chicago.
Yes, we are officially going to Chicago next Wednesday and Thursday. Driving. Partially to buy DH a car, and partially for a quick get away. I'm thankful Friday will be a holiday for me. Sleep!
Something sad at work today. One of the new employees who I really liked was let go. She was within her 6 month probation period. Not sure why.
At work I learned something else today - about copiers.
When you put paper into the drawer, you should do it "seam side" up. (the seam referring to the paper covering the ream of paper.) You also should do something called "fluffing" the paper (i.e. adding air pockets.)
All to avoid something like this:
(Kind of beautiful in its own way I think ...)
Still going strong on the no soda ... though I had a real test a few days ago - the first day the bus routes changed. STRESSED OUT! But I persevered and bought some carbonated water from family dollar instead. (and ... chocolate.)
Only 13 days till Trans Siberian Orchestra!!
The other day we had a backpack come in to Lost and Found, and inside it was a Nevada Barr book - one I hadn't read!
I picked it up from the library today. (on CD so I can load it on my phone to listen to while walking or in the car.)
I bought some parsnips today. I plan on making them for dinner on Sunday. I've never had them, so it should be interesting.
I also bought a bag of fresh cranberries last week. I put about 1/4 cup of them in my smoothie on Wednesday. Blegh! Yesterday and today I only put 3 or 4 ... much better.
DH emptied out the transmission fluid from his Honda (which he drove through high water last May?) in an attempt to get it working again. It didn't work.
So now he's on the hunt for a used transmission. He thinks he may have found one two hours away for $150. He just needs to find out if it's vtech or not?
If he can get the car going again for $500 or less, then it should be worth it. Otherwise, he may be ready to sell it. (It's a 2001 Honda with around 149k miles.)
Thank you everyone for your comments on my last post. DH and I had our budget meeting for November Thursday night (since I'm going to be gone most of Sunday.) We also discussed the grocery situation and meals. I think we came to a workable solution, but time will tell.
Almost finished with week 5 of the Stepbet. Currently looking at about a $5.56 profit. So .. not much, but it definitely has motivated me to move more consistently.
I'm really getting frustrated with the computer and the cat situation..
More often than not, as soon as I sit down at the computer to work/relax, I have anywhere between 2 - 4 cats join me. On my lap or on the desk directly in front of the monitor. It's a constant battle to keep them from blocking my view.
Then there is my monitor itself ... the monitor was a refurbished monitor and is at least 7 years old. It worked fine up to about 2 months ago when I came home one day to find splotches on the screen and a blue line square that wouldn't go away (it did go away about 36 hours later.) The best we could figure out was one of the cats sprayed the monitor, and the display control button kind of spazzed or something.)
The blue line is back today. Plus the little box about adjusting the brightness. It makes surfing the Internet miserable (combined with fighting with cats who like to sit in front of the monitor - one who especially likes to play "chase the cursor")
Add to this my keyboard constantly drops letters or sometimes whole words!
We only have $150 (as of November) in the computer replacement category. My CPU is a bit more than 5 years old. I've reformatted it twice, but am still having issues with performance.
The only idea (temporary) I've had is to figure out a way to raise the monitor so that the cats can sit on the desk and NOT block the screen. It's just that the cord is already maxed out stretched, and I'm not sure how I could make sure the monitor would be on a stable surface.
Tomorrow I will be getting between 4 - 5 hours of overtime! My boss and I will be putting the new route maps and schedules in 67 buses. The new routes start on Tuesday.
We've had them available in the lobby for about a week and a half now - I've had to refill them just about every day. We have two signs clearly marking Current and Effective Nov 1, but, people don't read. Which is why we aren't putting the new stuff on til the day before - even though people have loudly been complaining about that.
After I'm done with the bus overtime, I'm going to go spend a few hours helping to serve drinks at a many nations food festival.
Then on Monday, I'm spending a few hours sitting at the book giveaway table at our Halloween alternative program.
Tuesday night I'm going to crash.
So, it's been about 9 days since my last entry. It's been busy and tiring and stressful ...
But ... I'm still doing well with no soda, and fairly well with the DD. Almost finished with week 3 of Stepbet.
Last week I had several pizza indulgences which I think my system did not like at all. Hence being sicker than I have been in a long time this weekend. I'm only now really recovering.
I've told DH I want to lay off on any pizza for a good while. And cheese. Not sure if it was the cheese, the grease, the white flour, or bad pineapple topping ...
I hadn't really wanted pizza the last time, but DH *really* wanted it, so I gave in. Ugh.
We were going to go to Denver on Sunday for a car, but DH didn't get enough sleep, so we scrapped the idea. I was so glad because I really didn't feel like driving there and back in one day. At all.
I just wish a car would magically appear within an hours or less drive that was PERFECT for what he wants.. So this car search would be over.
This coming Sunday DHs work is having a 2015 Christmas party ... catered by Outback Steakhouse. Yuck. DH actually wants to go (to the first part at least - second part is a party bus - double yuck.) So ... I'll eat something before we go and see if they have some kind of non-alcoholic non-soda drink ... dreaming, right? (water of course ...)
The following Sunday I have 3 - 4 hours of overtime at work putting new schedules on the buses, and then I'm volunteering at a local church event celebrating world food cultures. That's going to be a long day.
Last week I went out to IHOP by myself, and then I went and saw Sully. I really needed an evening out.
(I liked Sully, although there were parts of it I was going ... come on already! Part of it may be that it was pretty late and I was tired though ...)
DH and I had a pretty frank health discussion. He told me that he pretty much has decided to not really make any changes in his habits yet ... because he has time. My insisting/nagging/conjoling him to at least try something different obviously would not work ...
He also told me he'd rather take a pill than do a diet change.
So ... I guess that's it then. I can't force him to do anything. Sigh.
So ... today I found a job possibility with the city ... pays $2.50/hour more. Same hours. Working at the public library - doing some of what I do now, but adding in a lot more MS Office type work. Not a librarian position (those all require weekends, which I can't do.)
So ... I'm applying.
I don't know how I'd get off for an interview if it came to that. The next two months both of the people who cover my responsibilities when I'm gone will one or the other be gone more than they're here.
I guess if it's meant to be, it'll work itself out. the money sure would come in handy.
I'm still managing to stay away from soda. I'm finding out again, like other times I've managed to go more than two weeks avoiding it, that it gets to where I'm not sure why I wanted it in the first place. I'm at that point now - where a sip of DHs Cherry Coke doesn't even tempt me.
As far as the Daily Dozen - I'm still doing fairly well with it. I think I may modify it a bit ... such as making beans a 1/2 cup per day UP to 3 servings. Eventually I may work up to 3 servings daily, but most nights all I want is something simple like a bowl of cereal and maybe some fruit. When it gets colder, it'll be easier too ... soup or a sweet potato w/beans, etc.
DH didn't like the spaghetti squash too much. We have 3 mo I'm going to try making a spaghetti squash "pizza" and see if he'd go for that. I had lots of leftovers to eat this week because DH wasn't too keen on any of what I made on Sunday. I'm going to have to toss some of it, because I couldn't even eat it all.
One thing going to work on this weekend is coming up with a meal plan mainly using what we already have on hand, but using it in a different way (to make it more palatable to DH.) He was mentioning to me that he thought we shouldn't be buying more perishable items until we used up what we have. (I didn't say that if BOTH of us were eating them ....)
*Exercise - Fallen a bit short on this this week, due to 2 days of evening meetings and a road trip. Got in a 30 minute walk today though!
DH may have found his winter vehicle - just an hour away! Thursday when I got off work DH called me and asked me if I wanted to take a road trip to O city to see the car. Although I was pretty tired and really wanted to get a walk in, etc., I said yes.
It's a 98 Subuaru - not sure how many miles - $1400. Needs new tires and a driver's side mirror and the windshield replaced. DH was supposed to call the dealer today to talk to them - I forgot to ask him if he did or not.
I really hope this car is workable. A 1 hour road trip is much preferable to a 12 hour roundtrip!
One of our local gyms is running a contest starting on Monday for a trip to Vegas. You enter as a team of 4, and earn points based on exercise, tracking food, weight loss, participation in nutrition events, etc. You get free access to their gym for the duration of the contest.
The winning team of 4 gets a 3 day/2 night trip to Vegas. Airfare and hotel only.
So ... I got the light duty lady to agree to partner up with me - we'll be assigned two more people.
Doubt we'll win, but it'll be fun anyway.
(This contest is mainly a marketing gimmick to get people to join their gym - it's a new company taking over the locations a defunct gym.)
It's free. (Although you can earn more points by buying stuff at some place, or also by scheduling a chiropractic consultation / visit (sponsors).) I may go ahead and do the chiropractic thing - check to see if a visit would be covered under insurance.
I ended up getting 6 hours of overtime this week! Two meetings from 5 - 7, and then a 3rd meeting I wasn't supposed to be at initially, from 3 - 5. Due to my union contract, that 30 minutes of OT HAS to be 2 hours.
2 of the meetings had about 125 people each, and one had 49 .... lots of twiddle the thumb time at that one.
I received my signup bonus for the AE Charge card - 25000 points plus another 1000 for my "purchase." (paid medical debt) Let's just say I'm underwhelmed at the choices.
Most likely we're going to go with using it as Amazon credit. 26,000 points translates into $182 at Amazon.
Or we may keep it around in case we do some traveling, and then we could use it on a more dollar for point basis at hotels com.
I'm going to try contacting N e l n e t again tonight to see if they accept a 3rd party check. I've already sent them two emails through my husband's account (that I set up for him online ...) with no response. (student loans)
DH and I agreed that if we don't get a response within two weeks this time, that we'll send the $600 in rewards from Citi to the mortgage instead. That'd be more than a one-month payment. (The mortgage company responded to my inquiry within about 6 hours!)
Once that finally clears out the rewards points, then I'm going to check into having that card changed into the Double Cash back card (that doesn't have an annual fee.)
No Soda. About an 80% on the daily dozen. Chocolate bought and consumed.
The day didn't start well. I tossed and turned more than slept. Then when DH got home he tells me he's decided his car is "safe" for a 6 hour shift, so wouldn't be using mine. After a 2 hour "discussion" he promised to come straight home and change cars if he had the slightest hesitation about the wheel bearing. (DH got home about 3:20 a.m.)
As soon as I turned the lights on at work, I had a customer - one of the agencies. I later found out that I gave them the low income version instead of the full fare. I was blurry eyed and a bit foggy AND had two calls on hold before I'd even logged in. uGH.
After lunch I found out that the route changes are being postponed til November 1. Citing that the city budget has not been passed.
This is a mixed blessing. On one hand having more time to finalize prep will be very helpful. On the other hand, we have spent a massive amount of time advertising an Oct 3 start date. Now we get to explain that there's a new start date...
BTW - if anyone has an interest in bus driving, we are looking for drivers. ASAP.
I helped out the first open house about the new routes tonight. 120 people showed up! Less than 7% sounded disgruntled, and of those, most of them we were able satisfy them.
It was actually kind of fun. Tomorrow I get to do it all over again. 4 hours overtime, thanks much.
Day 15 of no soda.
Had a Kit kat gifted to me by the lady doing light duty. I'm a milk chocolate gal - rarely dark.
I think I got an 87% today. Lots of leftovers from dinner.
I think DH and I are both getting tired of roasted veggies. I need to come up with something else. Not salad. He won't eat salad. Veggies have to be cooked.
So, how did DH save the day?
Well last night I was afraid I had fried my blender and my InstaPot. The blender would be a horrible loss due to daily use, and the InstaPot, I'm just starting to figure out what to do with it.
I'd tried everything I could think of. DH had me try plugging the blender in another outlet, and it worked! So then we thought that the outlet went bad.
But when I plugged something into it, it worked!
So, we thought maybe just the IP had fried.
But then DH made the wonderful discovery (which he will tease me about forever) - the removable plug in cord was NOT plugged in to the back of the pot!
Crisis averted. Wooh!
Of course, on the other hand .. since DH hadn't made an appointment to get his car looked at (the wheel bearing fixed) and had just let it go and go (he did buy the needed parts ...) he tells me on Saturday he needs my car.
It probably will be most of this week before it can get fixed.
And of course this week just so happens to be when I have two evening meetings in a row after work.
Thankfully my boss said she'd be ok with me riding with her to the meeting, and taking me home on Tuesday. Wednesday won't be an issue since DH doesn't work til 9 PM.
But still... Ugh.
I needed a few stamps to mail something, and since after I got home, DH had the car, I walked to the next closest gas station which sold stamps. (I called first!) Got a good 35 minute walk in too.
On my way home, a lady that I've seen quite a number of times on my walks was in her driveway unloading groceries with her son? She said hi to me and asked me if I lived in the area. I told her that I lived just around the corner.
She then told me that if I ever wanted a walking partner, just bang on her door after 3 pm and she'd throw on some shorts and go! COOL!
Something else pretty good. I got a call from my doctor's office about my blood work. They said that my platelets had improved a good bit, and to stay on the iron supplements - they seemed to be working!
I need to call back and make an appointment for another retest, and also ask what the numbers were. I hate how they don't give you a copy of the results unless you ask. It's so annoying. I want to track these things myself!
So, I've been pretty frustrated with one of my paid to exercise apps - bounts. It works fine, but I haven't been able to redeem for a reward in a LONG time. I have enough points for at least $15 worth of rewards.
But they are all out of stock. Except one - Crutchfield. A $25 reward. I need another 2k points or so for.
I had been wondering why I'd even want that. But then I got a catalog in the mail today (or I should say DH did) and it was for ... Crutchfield! I browsed through it and at first thought everything was WAY out of my price range and nothing I'd really want.
Then ... then I saw it. A little device you plug into your stereo which works to make your stereo bluetooth compatiable. That just means that you can listen to your iPhone music without any cords connecting to your speaker system. $50.
This is a goal I can work towards.
Something else I forgot!
DH agreed to go to a real concert with me! Trans-Siberian Orchestra on Nov 17. It'll be an early birthday celebration for me. Thank goodness the guitarist he likes is in this particular group (I guess they divide the group into two to cover more territory.)
Now I just need to buy the tickets!
Day 11 of no soda consumed.
Chocolate was consumed, but only one piece. (a Hershey Nugget - so very small piece - leftover from yesterday)
Was hungry waiting for DH to wake up (still waiting ...) and had an apple and some triscuits w/hummus.
Had Little Ceasar's for lunch ..($10). DH wanted it, and I felt like going for it since he hadn't eaten in more than 24 hours ... I have two slices left for either dinner or lunch tomorrow. Mushrooms and pineapple (my usual toppings)
Depending on what we end up doing for dinner, I'm at about 60% today. I'm okay with that since it wasn't a normal day.
DHs appointment - His colonoscopy went well. It was pretty quick overall once they took him back. The nurses were great - one of them was someone he went to high-school with! DH was a little embarrassed to have her see him in the procedure.
My appointment - For some reason the lady who usually sticks me in one shot, had to really dig around today. Ouch.
So between the two appointments, I went to work for about 2 1/2 hours.Busy busy busy. Wow.
Our new route maps came in, and I got to help move out the old boxes and move in the new ones ... in my dress work pants with my hair down.
So, even though I didn't go on an actual "walk" today, I think I probably burned as many calories. Sure sweated enough!
I really like the lady who is doing light duty. She's really trying. She used my computer a little bit today (I'd shown her the basics yesterday.) She told me that I need an assistant..
The phones are pretty busy due to the new routes. Complaints, people wanting to know when they can get the printed schedules, people wanting help figuring out their kids new routes, etc. etc. But lots of complaints. Plus the normal calls of course.
No soda bought or consumed
Got in 4 servings of veggies/fruits
No soda bought or consumed
Got in about 8 servings of fruits/veggies
Tumeric/Cinnamon/black pepper in smoothie
- - -
Day 4 and 5
Too much chocolate bought and consumed.
Am thinking that I am going to keep the focus just on eating lots of fruits and veggies and no soda. Not worry about the chocolate intake for now.
Thursday when I got to work boss pulled me aside and basically told me what I'd planned on saying to her .. That it made the most sense to put the extra person at the extra desk/table rather than me.
The phone didn't start working properly til today - after a bit of magic by the phone/IT guy.
Extra person I think hadn't caught that the plan had NOT been for us to be sharing desk/phone space. At first she was wondering if I'd had an issue with her invading my space, or if my boss had a problem with her.
I told her that no, it had been the plan from the beginning to have her at a separate phone/space, but that we hadn't figured on "retired" person being here doing training and using that extra desk/space.
She seemed to accept that ...
So, essentially I guess this isn't that big of a deal. Maybe more of a miscommunication between my boss and I.
I can deal with the situation as it is now for the next 4 or 5 weeks. Hopefully with less chocolate intake then the last few days ...
Thank you everyone for your thoughts/comments/suggestions. They all are greatly appreciated.
30+ minute walk
Smoothie with cinnamon/tumeric
Got in about 7 servings of fruits/veggies
Didn't buy or drink soda
Ate chocolate (bought yesterday)
So ... I like most things about my supervisor. There is just one thing that has slightly irritated me over the past two years. Almost every time I come back from taking a vacation of more than I few days, I find my office space / work supplies rearranged.
I get told that this is done because the way I have things arranged don't make sense to my supervisor and she can't find anything.
(When I am gone, she basically does my job as well as her own. Just she isn't logged on to the information line, so there are somewhat less calls to answer.)
So ... I sort of get this. I get used to the changes, put some things back where I prefer, and move on.
Only to have it happen again the next time.
Oh well. Not a big enough issue to bring up.
But ... a month ago or so I'm told that one of the bus drivers is going to come in and do "light duty" by answering the phone. She would wear my earpiece and I would still sell passes, etc. I was also told that I would "get" to sit at the extra desk.
Um... ok. I didn't like this idea very much (other than not having to answer the phone constantly) but I decided that if it was only for a few days, then I would just deal with it.
It turns out, that it didn't happen.
I had a lot of mail in orders that came in over the holiday weekend, needed to enter the work order reports for August, and a few other things - which I needed my computer for. Also, with just a few hours of listening to the light duty person answer the phone, I realized I needed to be there..
Plus, the extra desk is presently occupied by our "retired" accountant who is training our new accountant.
My boss was gone yesterday. So, I stayed put at my desk in my office space. There were multiple times where both lines lit up, and I tried to explain to her how to hear that, and how to deal with that ... but she for some reason couldn't hear the beeps ...
So today my boss comes back and is wondering why I'm sitting at my desk with her. I explain why and she's fine with it.
Then a little while later she comes in and tells me that the others in the back were complaining about the phone not being answered. Um ... not much I can do about that!
So the IT guy attempts to install a second phone line towards the back of my office space, by the lost and found cabinets. I'm told that this phone will be for me. That they'll set up a table or something for me there to work on. Um .. okay.
So .. the person who has no computer skills and is doing what comprises 50% of my work most days, will be sitting by MY computer and using my earpiece. While I will be sitting in the back of my office space with just a phone and a table.
No. Sorry, that just isn't going to work. Not only would I be bored to tears, but there are multiple things I do as part of my job where I NEED my computer.
The phone isn't working yet, so I'm still at my computer. But ... this person is talking like she's going to be here for at least the month of September.
If it was just for a few days .. I could deal with it. But for an entire month? NO WAY JOSE!
I already feel like I get the short end of the stick with absolutely no privacy in my office space. People are constantly walking back and forth in the back of my office space (to the conference room area, lunchroom, bathrooms, etc.) I don't mind this, really. But because just by virtue of being at my desk, anyone walking into the lobby assumes I'm available to help them, I can't make personal phone calls at my desk, eat lunch at my desk, etc. I HAVE to do that in the lunchroom.
I feel kind of ... maybe, disrespected? Like they think I shouldn't care about giving up my space for someone else. Like they can make changes to my space without asking me if I'm okay with it - it's more important for the space to make sense to them - people who spend less than five hours a week in my space.
I'm seriously, seriously irritated right now. I want t approach my boss tomorrow about this, but I'm not sure how best to do it.
We have a pretty good relationship overall, but still, I want to be careful.
I thought about asking her how she'd feel if she was told that she was going to be given an assistant, who was going to do half of her work, and be given her desk space, while she would be relocated somewhere else without all the tools to do her other 50% of the work. Or, how would she feel if she came back from vacation to find that someone had decided to redesign her office for her - to make that space work better for the person redesigning the office.
I'd really like to ask her if they're trying to get me to quit. But I don't really think that's the case. I think she's just not getting how this is sounding/feeling to me. (There's very little that makes this job tolerable. Putting me at a table with just a phone and no computer will drive me beyond bonkers with boredom.)
Please SA, your words of wisdom would be greatly appreciated.
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?
So DH did go to the doctor, and we got the bloodwork results on Tuesday (last week.) High blood pressure, diabetes and another issue.
Sigh. He had been worried for awhile that he might have developed diabetes. His mom died of diabetes complications in the late 80s. One of his sisters died of complications from it (juvenile onset) a few years before their mom.
Right now he is refusing to meet with the diabetes lifestyle counselor. He says that he knows enough about it, and any questions he has can be Googled. He has agreed that if after 30 days of doing it his way, if he doesn't see improvements, that he will see the counselor.
He does seem to be a little more willing to eat veggies ... and is cutting back on soda a good bit.
I'm really, really trying to not butt in and tell him what to do. To let him set the pace. It's really hard though - especially when he started out by doing 90% protein calories ...
I spoke to a CVS pharmacist about a blood pressure cuff and an glucose meter. They told me that I should contact our insurance to see what was covered.
I did that today - found out that both the meter and strips - of any brand - are 100% covered, but the bp cuff would count towards OOP and deductible. I need to contact one of the local medical supply places here to find a cuff with a large enough extension piece.
Work ... Sigh. The last week and a half has been extremely busy, hectic, stressful. Last Friday there was an incident where I had two people in a row come to the window asking for route info, logged off the phone, and still had 5 different people call and be placed on hold (then hang up) while helping the people at the window. Then had someone call moaning and groaning about being on hold for 25 minutes.
I kind of vented unwisely to my supervisor ... Usually there is at least one other person there who can help handle an over load of phone calls, but my supervisor was in a meeting and those present in the office weren't ones who generally answer the phone ..
We both left quite frustrated Friday afternoon.
I nearly got sideswiped on the way home which definitely did not help my perspective. Thankfully DH was home and was able to give me some much needed respite so I eventually felt calmer about everything.
Then yesterday my supervisor asked me to come back with her to the conference room.... One of the things she talked about to me about was Friday. We agreed that I should try forwarding more calls to the information line when I get swamped like that.
The other thing she talked to me about though really threw me for a loop. Apparently people have complaining about my area smelling bad. Sometimes about ME smelling bad.
I practice good hygeine - teeth brushed, hair washed, clothes washed, etc. The only things I could think of would be my shoes (which I leave at my desk overnight so I don't have to walk too much in them outside.) Or ... my clothes.
Yes, I always wear clean clothes (or at least clothes that still pass the sniff/smudge test after a wearing or two) But ... I think the issue could possibly be the cats. The smell from the cats.
When you have many multiple litter boxes throughout a home, it seems impossible to NOT have it smell. The chickens in the basement sure don't help either.
I asked my supervisor to alert me when she smells something off, so that way I can possibly pin point the cause better. (Such as - that top was hanging in the laundry room for the past week which is next to the workshop with the chickens and also in a room with a litter box. Or, that was the third time I wore those pants - maybe I was wrong about them passing the sniff test.)
I wasn't upset that she told me about this - in fact I appreciated it. However, at the same time, I'm now feeling mighty awkward around my coworkers wondering who had been talking about me behind my back.
I'm thinking it might be worth it to try to find a few hundered dollars in the budget to have someone come in here and help me figure out what to do to eliminate / alleviate the smell factor. (Supervisor's suggestion was get rid of most of the cats and all the chickens ... Yeah, that's not going to happen. Though maybe I can spur DH to get the chickens outside with the idea that their smell may be affecting me at work!)
(Shoes - I am planning on putting baking soda in them, and also maybe dryer sheets, and a few other ideas I found. Maybe also get some footies to wear with them. Probably also try to take them home with me each night.)
(Litter boxes - I use the scoopable kind with baking soda for multi-cat households. I completely scoop them ALL out daily. I have air fresheners in every room of the house, plus a couple of those things that are supposedly supposed to "refresh" the air ... I also use carpet freshener when I vacuum. The only other thing I can think of to do would be to completely clean out the litter boxes .. but I have done that a few times, and it is nearly an all afternoon ordeal and completely zaps any energy I have for the coming week. And that's only with doing half of them. *and no way would DH help with THAT - he's just barely agreed to take over scooping the basement boxes this last week.)
Speaking of energy ... I thought I was on an upswing and maybe the iron supplements were helping. Maybe I just way overdid it Sunday, but I am beyond wiped Monday and Tuesday. probably the busyness / stress at work isn't helping either though.
*I did see the counselor Monday. She basicaly told me that I'm doing a pretty good job of setting boundaries, but need to work on making DH take care of more of his responsibilities (like how he is eat) hour was barely enough time to scratch the surface. But it definitely was helpful.
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