I went food shopping on Wed. and purchased a good amount of food. I had quite a few coupons with me and had to make sure that the cashier took them off. I did this while I was bagging the groceries. I thought that I had done pretty well for myself with the coupon savings of 10.00 and change. That was until I got home and realized that I was charged twice for the same item that was priced at 7.59. I was really annoyed at this b/c I should have reviewed my receipt while I was in the store, instead of at home. It's just that the store was so crowded and people just want to get out of the store after their purchase (you can't really just hold up traffic to review the receipt in the store). I didn't think that the store would return my money once I had left the premises. I figured that I would call the store's customer service dept. anyway to see if they could shed some light on the situation. I was glad that I did. The person told me that she would write down that I had called and what the problem was and to bring my receipt back the following day and they would refund the money. Sure enough, the store did refund the 7.59. It really pays to review your receipts!
Yesterday, I had to cancel my AT&T service to the phone line in my vacation condo. It was getting expensive to have the service and there wasn't a point to keeping it b/c my cellphone can make the long distance calls. Well, let me tell you the customer service rep. tried to sell me everything but the Brookly Bridge during the phone conversation. She also told me something of interest which I did not know. She said that after I discontinued the long distance service that I would then have to call my regular phone carrier that maintains the line and tell them that the AT&T service was disconnected and that the phone service would have to send AT&T a letter letting them know that I actually did call them and made the request b/c w/o it they wouldn't disconnect service. I thought wow that is pretty nervy, why can't they do what I ask? The answer is...If anyone goes to use the phone to make a long distance phone call unknowingly and AT&T doesn't receive the letter they can actually stay attached to the phone line and charge really hefty fees for any calls made. This I didn't know. I hope this helps anyone that is disconnecting from a service.
Today, I have to sit down with hubby and allocate my 2006 contribution to my IRA. I wish I knew when I purchased my IRA that I was getting into an annuity instead of a straight forth IRA. I have to say, I have learned so much over the last four years. "I wish I knew then what I know now." I guess I shouldn't really think that way...I should be grateful that I have a savings at all. I just wished that I had been smarter. My parents were not savers and not good with money. I never had a solid foundation from them. This is why I so believe in teaching children from a young age about money. I think it should be one of the building blocks of eduation such as reading, writing, math and science.
Viewing the 'saving' Category
Saved all of my pay this week and tagged it as my cash account. It has been a pretty frugal week for me. Cooked dinner every night using the menu's from the mega menu mailer. The dinners were okay, nothing was outstanding.
Work was a little bit busier this week so that was a good sign. I like when it is busy, not just monetarily but it makes the time go by so much faster.
Nothing much going on in the Ebay or Half.com category.
Can't wait for the cold weather to be gone. I hate the cold and I hate being in the house.
I hope all of you have a great weekend!
My IRA took a slight hit yesterday and is still down today. I'm not worried b/c I have had this account for quite a while and every now and then it gets hiccups like this and then recovers nicely. In fact I think if the market stays down I think I will be asking hubby if we could invest more(in our DRIP account) than what we are now.
Pay check went entirely to bills this week with nothing left over.
Tonight, Salmon with Cilantro and Lime sauce for dinner.
Money that I have waited over two years for, was paid off in full to me yesterday. I honestly can say that I thought that I would never see that money again. So, right now I am being very thankful for it. I put it into my WAMU savings account earning 5% until I decide which accounts it will be disbursed to.
Yesterday bought 5 lbs of chop meat and divided it up into a meatloaf, spanish rice, meatballs and taco mix. I also bought a piece of salmon (2 lbs). That I will cut up and share with my mom and freeze my share until I'm ready to use it.
Not much else going on right now...just working and trying to keep up the house. Keeping up the house is kind of hard right now with the two dogs and the wet muddy ground. The floors constanly look like they need to be washed.
I haven't been doing as well as I had hoped this month in the 20.00 challenge. I will have to be more creative next month. The trouble is...I haven't really sold anything on Half.com or Ebay and since DD stopped drinking soda, there aren't too many bottles to return.
Whatever was left over from my walking around money for the week I deposited into the 20.00 challenge.
In other savings, after paying a few bill this month I was able to save a good portion of my salary. Hubby and I went in on buying more stock for our DRIP account. He still wants to stay with the mortgage co. and the gas co.. That's okay by me, b/c I feel that he knows what he is doing when it comes to the market.
My mortgage balance is coming down nicely. I mark it in miles stones. Like I couldn't have been happier when it was under 300,000.00 then 250,000.00 then 200,000.00 and now the new magic number is 175,000.00. We have been living in this same home for over 18 years so very slowly we have been watching it creep down.
As far as my credit card goes I know that I have a small balance on it as I write but it will be paid in full when the bill comes in.
On the weight loss front, I haven't lost an oz. but I think when the weather gets warmer and I get outside more I will start to shed the pounds.
This week I am fortunate to not have to pay any bills. My check goes to savings. I am not doing well this month in the 20.00 challenge. I think that I have to get more creative. More home cooked meals this week. No plans for the weekend as of yet. I am totaly enjoying the crocheting. I think I am getting the hang of it. Although, it is only a scarf.
I had a pretty quiet weekend. I didn't do much of anything except clean. Went out to dinner both Saturday and Sunday. I used gift cards that I received for my birthday.
Today is a long day at work. I know that it will be a no spend day. I guess that will make 3 no spend days in a row. That is a first for me.
Everything is pretty status quo on the money side. I'm not due anything outside of my weekly pay. My bills are paid and up to date. My taxes will not get filed until April. If I get a return this year it will not be until May. What is everybody else doing with their returns? I'm not sure what I'll do with mine.
Deposited 10.90 from half.com and 1.68 from a dividend check to the 20.00 challenge. Paid off the CC and some other bills and managed to save 400.00 to my cash fund.
Finally set up bill pay through my local bank. If this works the way I hope it will this is the way I will be paying my bills in the future.
Still haven't lost any more weight. I'm stuck at 154 for about 3 weeks now. I have been cooking dinner every night this week. Tonight will be chicken, mashed potatoe and veg. Popcorn for desert while watching my shows.
Tomorrow I will be heading upstate to my condo to give it a good cleanning. We will be having people use it in the next few weeks.
I received another cash gift today from another one of my brothers for my birthday(50.00). I will put this in my cash fund. I sold another book on half.com today. When that money comes in I will add it to the 20.00 challenge.
I spent 50.00 on a gift card to Red Lobster for my parents anniversary and 3.00 on a card. I went to the mall today with DD and I didn't spend anything. I had three gift cards I could have used but didn't. I am proud of myself. Lately it has been difficult going to the stores with DD b/c she is always urging me to buy stuff. I don't want to and this leads to an argument and then I have to deal with her bad mood afterwards.
Hubby is busy posting on Ebay at the moment and I am thinking about what to have for dinner. It is very cold tonight. I feel like I'm in the deep freeze.
Deposited 38.69(Ebay money) into the 20.00 challenge today. Sent off two checks today for my DRIP account, 500.00 a piece, first one to a gas and oil company and the second one to a mortgage company(Jan. contribution). This is the first time in about two years that I can contribute something to this fund. The end of this month I hope that I will be able to write another two checks for two more stocks in my portfolio. I am very happy to be realizing one of my financial goals for the new year.
This was the first week in a long time that I didn't shop with coupons. I didn't have any good coupons and the stores really didn't have much that I needed. I only bought a few things this week and used mostly what I had in the house. I did have the store flyer coupon which gave me 5.00 off my entire order.
Received most of the money from my Ebay sales yesterday. Deposited them today into the 20.00 challenge account. I was also repayed money owed to me $1,000.00 that is going into the DRIP fund. I didn'think I was going to be able to put anything into this fund this month but as it turns out I was pleasantly surprised. Now that we have some money in the fund hubby and I will have to sit down and decide which stocks we will be placing the money in. Hopefully we will decide on Thursday and I can mail out the payments on Friday.
The car is starting right up now with the new battery. Yesterday I had to bring the car in to the service station anyway b/c it needed an oil change(24.00). Not too bad.
I think I did pretty well in the savings department this month...considering it was the month of January.
The very cold brought trouble to my car. I couldn't get it started yesterday. I thought that it may have been something serious b/c it was making funny noises a few days prior to it not starting. I was just dreading another repair bill since the last one a few months ago amounted to about $1,200.00. I called my brother before the mechanic and asked him to take a look and give me his thoughts on the car. Right away he jumped started my car and it started and then he filled the battery with water. He said that the water level was very low and the battery didn't have a good charge and that is why it wasn't working, especially in the cold. I never thought to think that the problem was my battery b/c I just got the battery over the summer. Good thinking on my brothers part. Saved me a bunch of cash.
The same day my vacuum cleaner died. It went up in smoke and was making horrible noises. No getting off easy with this problem. This week I will have to go out and purchase a new one.
It has been a very boring weekend for me. Not much to do. Hubby is off doing his guy stuff and DD is off with friends and boyfriend. I think I will go to the movies a little later and see Freedom Writers. Of couse it is the matinee price and I will bring my own drink and treats!
Today was pay day. I was able to save some of it, not all. I figure some is better than none. Went to lunch today with DD and Hubby. It was very, very good. Next stop was the new Walmart that openned on Monday. Spent $60.00 there. Not on things that I needed either. I get so overwhelmed by the low prices that I think that everything is a good deal so I don't think twice about putting it in the basket. Then after the register is finished ringing everything up, I get in the car and think what did I buy that cost so much? Oh well, I know that the things I bought today will be put to good use. It's just that I really didn't need any of it.
I have a few items up on E-bay that are ending in a few hours. No bidders as of yet. I hope that I at least sell something. Even if I don't it won't be to bad b/c I had posted the auctions last Thursday when they were running a sale so it only cost 0.20 to post.
Hubby is posting his auctions for the week as I write. He seems to do pretty well with his auctions but he also has been doing it for quite a while and has learned a few things along the way.
Deposited 16.95 for ebay item sold and 81.64 for books sold on half.com. Added that to my January total in the $20.00 challenge.
I recently started to recylce pretty aggressively. I have always kind of recycled by returning bottles and such but now I'm into recycling anything plastic, paper and metal. I'm trying to get my husband and DD onboard as well. I have been visiting the thrift stores more than the department stores in this vein and have become more involved with my local Freecycle program. My DH is involved with Trout Unlimited which is an organization that is invoved with the preservation and conservation of the water ways and aquatic wild life. He volunteers much of his time and energy, cleanning up local streams and rivers. It is really unbelievable what people dump into these natural enviroments. It gets me so mad! Any way we try to do our part whether it is big or small. Evry little bit helps.
Today is grocery day. So, I'm off with my flyers, grocery game sheet and coupons in hand.
Today was a pretty good savings day. I went to the supermarket loaded with coupons,the store flyer and the grocery game list. I have to tell you I made out like a bandit. I was able to get three regular sized products for free and save a bunch on items that I use regularly in the house.
I was going to go out and buy a new garbage pail for the recycleables. I thought that I would call the town first and see what kind of a container they would advise, lucky for me they said that they would send me a post card and then I could go pick one up for free from one of their local sites.
I listed a few more items on E-bay today. As I have said before this money goes into the 20.00 challenge. So I am hoping that the items go this time around.
I have some pretty big expenses coming up this month. DD's tuition $2800.00 plus books. Condo taxes(550.00) and insurance($250.00). Start my monthly payment into my stocks and pay off my balance on my CC from Christmas. Uggh! Just when you think you are starting to turn a corner in savings. My motto "It's Always Something".
Well gotta go and finish dinner. We are having London Broil, mashed potatoes and Broccoli.
Sold two books on half.com today and two items on Ebay. When I receive payment on these items I will enter the amounts into the $20.00 challenge total.
Today was a no spend day due to long working hours.
DD did the food shopping and made dinner tonight . What a big helper she was today.
Work was pretty slow again today. This is not good. I sure hope that things pick up soon. We go through spurts like this but when we did the yearly numbers in Dec. We were down by about 60,000 for 2006.
After work I made the deposit to my 20.00 challenge money to the WAMU account. 100.00 was from the Verizon rebates and 2.00 from the bottle return. I was able to save my paycheck today as well.
DH took DD and me out for a delicious Thai lunch today. Yumee. I am still so full. No one wants dinner tonight.
Walked for about 30 minutes with the dogs. They love going for walks so much. They get so excited when they hear their leashes jingle. Day 4 of the New Year and I am still on track. Yeah!!
Today I didn't feel well so I didn't go to work. Hubby didn't mind b/c it wasn't busy. I have such a bad headache and I feel a little dizzy and nauseous. I took some Tylenol and that took the edge off for a while.
I went to the thrift shop to see if they had anything interesting. I am looking for a nice large oval mirror. I make a visit every week. I didn't find a mirror but for $7.00 I found a gorgeous pair of Barney New York, Brown dress slacks, a Lands End tailored shirt, a maroon turtle neck by August Silk, a beautiful light blue cardigan and a navy blue fleece zippered jacket(when I got home I found a quarter in the pocket). I was supposed to go grocery shopping today but that didn't work out for me b/c when I got to the store and was wondering why my circular's sale items didn't match the prices in the store, I realized I had last weeks flyer with me and the coupons I had to match were also for the old circular. So I put every thing back in its proper place and left. I was just too tired after that to go through it all over again. When I got home I vacuumed for a little and then took a break.
I received my Verizon rebate checks today for the phones I had purchased before Christmas. I am still waiting on one more. The rebates are $50.00 a piece. This money will go into the $20.00 Challenge tomorrow.
I was able to get 45 minutes of walking in today. The weather was so beautiful here in New York. Tonight for dinner will be Crab Cakes, pasta and salad.
Went to Costco today and bought our ususal supplies and renewed our membership. Tomorrow I will be heading to the local grocery store with coupons in hand.
Deposited money from my Ebay sale into WAMU $16.94. Sold another book on Half.com.
Walked the dogs for 30 minutes. Went to the gym for 45 minutes.
Dinner at home. Rented a Red Box movie. Going to relax now.
Well, after entering all the numbers for 2006 we came up with a number pretty close to our gestimate. We did really well in the savings department and would even like to improve upon it for 2007.
When I make entries onto my blog I ususally just include my earnings and savings but at the end of the year my hubby and I add together our numbers. He is the bigger earner and pays most of the bills as well as the mortgage. We live primarly on his salary and I have a few designated bills. He is able to save some of his earnings while I am able to save most of mine. We combine both to get our yearly total.
Even though we are in a housing bubble it hasn't really effected the value of homes in our neck of the woods. Our house is holding its equity nicely. Which is a big boost to the bottom line.
For 2007 I will contribute 4,000.00 to my IRA. Put 1,000.00/month into the stock fund. Contribute as much as I can to the cash fund. Continue the 20.00 challenge into my WAMU account. In this account I will place the money I receive from Half.com, Ebay, rebates, bottle return money and rolled coins.
Well, I think that about covers it. Happy New Year to all!
Ended the week feeling pretty good about the savings I have accomplished. Although going to the city to see the show with DD was quite expensive, it isn't a frequent thing that we do. The last time I went with her to see a show was about 2 years ago. The rest of the week was pretty frugal. I saved $75.00 at the food store and I have basically made all three meals at home this week. I went to the thrift store and purchased some really nice childrens books for my nephews which I plan on giving them for Christmas along with their store bought gifts. The Childrens books are only .25 at the thrift store. I gave my brother $50.00 for his BDay and it was very much appreciated. I was also able to save about 90% of my paycheck. Next week is going to be a killer though. I will not be saving a dime. I am giving my parents cash for Christmas b/c they never like or use anything I pick out for them so I give them cash so that they can do as they please with it. I still have to get hubby a few more stocking stuffer gifts. I have to get the 2 girls I work with a little something and the mailman. Oh and my sons girlfriend.
On Dec. 31st hubby and I are going to go over the savings and spending plans for 2007 and review how we did this past year. I already know that we have done pretty well but that is vague.
When we review 2006 it will be spot on, so I am anxiuos to find out. I think this is a great way to celebrate the New Year.
Used a few coupons today. Hubby and I had lunch today and used a $2.00 coupon. Next we went to Staples, returned a used ink cartridge and received $3.00 off the new cartridge. On to Michaels where we had a 20% off coupon which we applied to some picture matting= 2.00.
Took my pennies to coin star and received $15.28 in return which went into my new WAMU savings account. Cashed some bottles and cans received $16.00 which hubby kept to put into his coin account.
Last week we purchased new Verizon phones three of them. We had $50.00 rebates for each phone=$150.00. The total after rebates for the phones = $45.00.
Going into the city tonight to see a show with DD. I can tell you now it won't be cheap. I hope the show will be good. Going to see Damien Rice.
I sold a book(Not my own. I don't write) on Half.com today. Only 17 more to go. I didn't make much but I did make something and I have reduced the clutter in my house by a smigeon. Every little bit helps. I got to thinking about where I should put this money as well as my bottle return money and my rolled coin money. I decided to open a Washington Mutual, free checking and savings combo. The checking is free and the savings account is currently earning 5% interest( doesn't require a minum balance at this time).
The minimum amount needed to open the account was $1.00. Since I am already a Wahington Mutual customer I was able to open both accounts in under 5 minutes. This was done over the internet. This offer is not available in the brick and mortar banks. Tomorrow is payday so I will go to the bank and make an additional small deposit to these accounts and see how it works out. I don't think I will have any bills to pay with this weeks check. Yipee!
Today I had to bring in my puppy to get her weighed for her heart worm medication she is a whopping 75lbs. and she is only 8 months old. Tomorrow I bring in my big boy Teddy to get his 2 shots. I also got his heat worm medication today. The medication alone came to over 100.00 for a six month supply.
Last night I rented The Pirates of the Carribean,Deadmans Chest. I am a Johnny Depp fan but I have to say that I didn't really care for the movie. I thought that it was pretty boring and I thought that the characters were a little scarey for a Disney movie. It's so hard to find something decent to watch.
As a follow up, The Dollar Stretcher has a good article entitled Mutual Funds for The Little Guy. There is a link to the The Dollar Stretcher under sites I frequent.
I have always wanted to give my daughter a good head start. Financially, hubby and I started getting stock for her when she was about 4.
When she was 16 we signed her up with her own checking and savings account as well as her first CC. The CC we signed her up for was set at a very low max(250). We taught her how to use credit responsibly. She had a job working at the local supermarket, making a decent salary for a 16 yo. After she had that CC for a while we had the max increase to 1000.00 and we also encourage her to get more CC cards. DD was able to get an Amex,Discover card and a Visa. All with pretty good credit limits.
I have also kept an eye on her FICO which is 785 and that is b/c she doesn't have longevity with credit. It should go higher when she is about 25. Right now, I think it is still pretty good for someone of her age(21).
Last January I had read a few articles in the financial journals stating that one of the best moves for a young person financially would be to get started with a Roth IRA at a very early age. I did some research and I found that T.Rowe Price would let you open an account with as little as 50.00 so long as you made it in automatic payments from a checking account. T. Rowe Price also has a very low expense ratio which also attracted me. The other option I had in mind was Vanguard but they wouldn't let you open with just 50.00. We put in 75.00 and she puts in 75.00 to total 150.00 every month. I have also set her up with an Emmigrant savings account 50.00 per month gets put in there and that hopefully will serve as her future emergency fund. She has another savings account that she saves her money in to buy herself things. I think I have covered pretty much everything that is in the works for her.Oh, one more thing, she has an insurance policy(SBLI) I got this for her when she was 2 or 3. I know this is the wrong kind of insurance, whole not term but she has had it for so long I am not going to get rid of it now. I hope this gives her a good start when she wonders out on her own.
I'm one of those gals that hate going to the salon to have their hair done. I mean I actually get palpitations and sweaty palms as soon as I walk in the door.
I think it stems from my childhood. I would always ask my Mom to keep my hair long and sure enough just when my hair got to the point that I thought it looked a little long, she would have it cut. I mean short. DA short. I would get so upset that I would not talk to her even under the threat of getting whacked. Back then it was acceptable to give your kids a whack and my Mom would never hesitate. My cousin Rose always had such beautiful long hair and I was always so jealous of the fact. On top of which everyone would tell me, I looked like a little boy. I think when I turned 10 or 12, I got to keep my hair whatever lenght I wanted b/c I was able to take care of it on my own(you know,no knots). So I guess this childhood trauma is always lurking in the back of my mind. I am always afraid that the beautician will cut it too short or make it look bizarre. And any time I find someone I think has done a good job they usually wind up quitting and then I have to find someone else.
Well, recently I have been going to a salon that is pretty far from me. I go there b/c they really do a decent job but their prices are really expensive. So what I try to do, is get my hair colored by them every other month for $55.00 and on the off month I color my own hair for $5.00. I will only get my hair cut if it really needs it. My hair grows really slow so sometimes I can go for about 12 weeks. Then I pay $55.00 for the cut. I tried cutting my own hair a couple of times and boy what a mess. So I don't even attempt it anymore.
Today was the day I colored my hair and if I may say so, it came out looking pretty good. I went a little darker than usual. I like when I do my hair it comes out so shiny. I use semi permanent. I'm not up to the permanent stage yet. Soon though! Todays coloring cost me $3.00. The brand I use normally sells for 5.00 but I had a $2.00 coupon. I also gave myself a much needed manicure today. I sometimes will go to the manicure place and pay 20.00 for a mani and pedi but it's winter and my feet are either covered by shoes or slippers. So I don't bother unless I have to go to an affair. I don't bother with the fake nails or tips. They are very nice but not for me. I can usually grow mine to a decent lenght and then I shape them. They never come out as good as when you have them done but I think they came out good enough. I painted them a pretty mauve color and put plenty of top coat on to keep them looking nice for a while. If I don't put top coat on they start chipping right away.
Today was a no spend day for me. I did try to get rid of some books that have been cluttering my home. I posted about 20 books on Half.com. I will see how that goes. First time posting on that site. I have purchased from them and found it was pretty easy and a good deal as well.
For Thanksgiving I made my free turkey from Shoprite and brought it to my Mom's. I also brought 2lbs. of shrimp and two large trays of mushrooms stuffed with crabmeat and covered in mozzarella cheese. I came home with everything except the mushrooms. My mother had outdone herself again...she had enough food to feed an army never mind us. So, today for lunch I used 1/2 of the shrimp to make shrimp salad and tonight for dinner we will have turkey again. Tomorrow night I will use the remainder of the shrimp for Shrimp Scampi. The rest of the turkey leftovers will be used for turkey salad and turkey noodle soup.
I have to say Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays maybe even the favorite. I love getting together with my family and breaking bread with them and I also love the feeling of "feeling thankful" for what I already have. The feeling is much better than at Christmas, especially when you don't meet expectations.
I was able to save most of my pay this week,which is excellent. I rented the movie You, Me and Dupre from Red Box...it was cute and very funny at times. I read The Aristocrat, a romance novel by Ann Coulter it was just okay. Looking forward to the weekend.
I don't have much planned for this month financially speaking. I'm just trying to save more and spend less.
I'm doing okay with the credit card...I guess. I do have a small balance on one of the cards and that is because I have been doing some Christmas shopping I'm sure that the balance will go a lot higher by the end of December. Having a zero balance while it lasted made me feel good. Now I kind of feel blah. Oh well! I like using the old CC because of the ease of use and the buyer's protection that it offers.
I did come into some money over the past two weeks. I received my state and federal return money( I filed late). I had forgotten about it...so it was a nice suprise. It all went into savings. I am going to go over the finances and come up with a new strategy for the coming year. We were very good this year so I think next year will be very hard to top. WE didn't take any time off work or go on a family vacation this year. First time this has happened since we have been married. Next year I would like to go on a couple of vacations to make up for this past year. We will see.
It hasn't been a very exciting week. Kind of on the dull side. Haven't spent much money either,except on food shopping. Used a lot of coupons and was able to save a fair amount. Gotta love the coupons!
Today was payday and after bills I was able to save about 25%. Not too bad. Hubby is jumping on board and he is joining me in the savings department.
Today we cashed in some bottles and received a dollar in change. That will go into hubby's coin savings.
I have been doing quite a bit more cooking as of late. I really like using my new crock pot. Tonight I made a nice pot roast with potaotes and carrots. Yummy!
Today was my dog Teddy's last day of physical therapy. I have to say he is so much improved from the beginning. Thank goodness!
Yes, finally a no spend day! I have been waiting for one of these days to come around again. I had to work all day so no time to spend.
I made tinapbeana's dirty rice recipe. I had that for lunch today and it was very good. My husband enjoyed it as well. I think I went a little to far with the spices. Tonight, I will grill an Asian marinaded London broil for dinner, already have that on hand. Well, back to work I go.
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