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Offer Letter Recieved

July 1st, 2008 at 03:41 am

Tomorrow I start my first day in my new position. Today I finally got my offer letter. It's been a yo-yo thing. First my former boss asked if I had received the letter last week, I hadn't, so she emailed the head of the dept I'll be working for asking him to get it for me.

Then by the end of the week she told me she was just going to write it for me and that I'd be very happy about the result.

Today I almost went to ask her about it since I still hadn't gotten it yet but she was never in her office when I went to ask.

Just before lunch the head of the dept came by my desk telling me that he needed to get a hold of the CFO to a sign off on my salary so he couldn't tell me the amount but that I would be getting a raise.

Finally at the end of the day it came finally. I got almost a $4k a year raise and after comparing it to my last paycheck at my last job it works out to $600 more a year than I was making before.

However, the net amount that I was making at the cut I took to work my first position was enough to pay bills and have $100 left over to pay on extra things. So I'm super stoked about this first paycheck even though only half of it will be at my new pay rate.

Paycheck has been fixed! and other ramblings

February 24th, 2008 at 04:56 pm

I received a check on Wednesday for the difference that was missing in my check. Of course, not much by way of taxes was taken out of it but at least now I know that I am at the same rate I was getting before, which I should have been. So I went ahead and started my clothing allotment, and wound up paying a total of $400 on my credit card. Not all of that came from this extra check just I was able to add to what I had set aside previously.

In the end, I will always have something extra to pay on my debt I just won't have a clear idea of how much because....

~ I changed my transportation withholding amount last month -but I sent it off straight to the company that takes care of it instead of giving it to HR. Since HR didn't know they were to decrease my transportation amount they pulled out the full amount instead of half. My next check they won't pull out anything to compensate.

~ I want to sign up for AFLAC insurance but the information they give us isn't very clear as far as cost and such so I was waiting til the rep came to discuss options. He will be in sometime next week. That will affect my check slightly.

~ I can contribute to my 401k starting with April's check. That will affect my check starting then.

~ I get a review in March. There's a chance a raise might be involved there.

I think I'm not going to play with my withholdings this year. It's just been too confusing with my pay in general and I would rather just not have to pay again. Though I might check and see if I can just change my Fed to 2 and leave my State at 1. But it will be July before I even consider anything.

Another thing I held out from the extra check I got last week was the entry fee for a half marathon in June. There's a group at my Curves that are going to train together for it. Apparently only the first 3,000 entrants get t-shirts so the gal in charge was encouraging everyone to register online. I get her enthusiasm, this is her first event. But I could take or leave the t-shirt. Still, online is easy so I went through the motions this morning to register only to find at the end that there would be an extra fee of almost $4 for registering online. I decided to leave the fate of my t-shirt getting to the post office and will be mailing in my registration tomorrow.

Tonight is the Oscars and while I really could care less in the general scope of things, the theatre I volunteer at is the only sanctioned Oscar Night Event in the state of Oregon. I think only one non profit in each state is awarded that privilege and this is their third year in a row doing it. It's their biggest fundraiser and rather appropriate since it's the Hollywood Theatre. I will be working there tonight and it will be a lot of fun. They'll have red carpet, paparazzi, drag queens dressed up as famous people doing catty commentary as people arrive, there'll be food, drinks, raffle and silent auction prizes, and I think the coolest of all, the actual programs from the real event will be handed out to the guests. Those were delivered yesterday during our volunteer meeting. But I didn't actually see any of them. We are encouraged to dress up if we want, but we don't have to. We just can't wear jeans.

clothing allowance on hold, at least this month.

February 16th, 2008 at 04:25 pm

There was something odd about my paycheck this month. I could tell right away in my direct deposit amount. I did expect that taxes would be more, considering I support the payroll software my company uses and I know how it calculates taxes. But the net amount was far less than even I expected, even with an hour of overtime.

When I got to work and got my check stub I saw why. My first check in Jan showed hours worked as 86.67 (which is correct for salary hours at half a month) and an amount of 1700. My second check in Feb showed hours worked of 173.33 (which is correct for salary hours at a full month) and an amount of 3000. Now if I were to go by my first check, my second amount should have been 3400. To make matters even more confusing, at the rate I was getting from the contract place (before I went permanent) my amount for one month should have been 3200.

I emailed my boss about it and she is checking into it. I just want to know what my actual rate of pay is supposed to be. I don't see why I shouldn't expect at minimum the amount the contract place was paying me. Either way, I need to know what to expect so I can budget accordingly. By taking my clothing allowance amount out this month, I had enough to cover all bills plus have a little bit of breathing room and pay a tiny bit extra on a credit card. I guess we'll just have to see what next month holds.

Oh and my boss said I'd be getting a review in March, my official '3 months' with the company since I went permanent in January. And salary would be discussed then as well.

Small student loan paid off and new clothing allowance

February 13th, 2008 at 05:53 am

Over the weekend I paid off my small student loan! That makes me happy!! It also frees up a $50 payment I was making to it to be used elsewhere.

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This Friday I will receive my first full month check. It will be nice to see how much I'm actually receiving. Although it will change in a month or so once they actually start taking money out for my retirement. Still though I think I'm left with at least $100 extra to pay off stuff.

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I think I need to give myself a clothing allowance. I've been in my new job for 4 months now, and some of my clothes are showing signs of wear. Since I need to dress a little nicer I want to be prepared for spending a little more when it comes down to it. I'm considering taking that $50 that I was paying on the student loan and just setting it aside every month so that when I do need to buy clothes I have the cash for it. I rarely pay full price on anything, usually it's on sale, more often on clearance. But still things add up and with my height that adds at least $10 to the price of things no matter how much it's reduced by. Especially where pants are concerned. I don't need to buy anything now which is why I think I should start setting aside money now so I have it when I need it and don't raid savings or pull out the cc.

I'm pretty excited for Friday though, let me tell you. Smile

So Excited!

January 16th, 2008 at 06:07 am

I got my first paycheck today...my first paycheck after becoming a permanent employee that is. When I first looked at my bank records I thought at first that perhaps they hadn't taken out my pre tax stuff (FSA and transportation) and the second thought was perhaps I got a raise. And the answer is....

I GOT A RAISE. Though since they were paying me through a contract company before it may still be less to them. No matter. I double checked one of my old pay stubs from my old job. I am now, after 3 months in a lower position, making $50 (gross) less per month than I was making after 10 years in a higher position. Daymn!

Net it works out even better. On my check, I'm taking home about the same as before however...I'm also having them take out $165 pre-tax for FSA and transportation allowance so technically I'm so making more than I was before.

Of course, after a couple of months my 401k will start coming out so that will make a difference but I don't care!! I'm so excited! They will match up to 3% so I just did 3%. And in June or so I'm going to change my withholdings to 2 so I don't pay as much in taxes straight up.

I so can't wait to do my taxes this year. With all the changing jobs and stuff I didn't do the change withholdings thing as much so I should actually get something back.

Kicker check came!

December 8th, 2007 at 09:12 pm

My kicker check showed up in the mail today! And it was for $541. Sweet! it will make a nice addition to my saving account.

Every two years Oregon State kicks back to the taxpayers any budget overages more than 2% that were collected. The amount they kick back varies but in the past I don't think I've gotten more than $80.

They say this may be the last kicker for a while, I'm just going to enjoy the fact that I got one this year!

I read somewhere that 1200 checks were accidentally mailed early. The date on the check was effectively post dated. The date on my check is 12/6 so I know mine wasn't one of the early ones.

Yay for money! Smile

I'm still here!

November 3rd, 2007 at 05:57 pm

I just updated my October totals. My EF looks like it went down $100 but considering I had to pull a COBRA payment of $420 out of it, it's not really that bad. I'm still over $1000 and my dad is going to try helping me out with December's COBRA payment.

My debt did increase by a good chunk. Mainly due to buying new clothes for work, buying some furniture for the apartment, and buying plane tickets for my brother and I to go to Dad's for Christmas. I have stopped carrying my credit card in my wallet because it was too easy to just put random other little stuff on it as well. I will have that one paid back off by the time I get my tax return and my brother finishes paying off what he owes me with his tax return.

The new job is going well. As far as my budget concerns go I'm still ahead of the game. I currently have bills paid up through Nov 20th and I get another paycheck Nov 9th.

Once I get a full paycheck from work (right now I'm anticipating that being February 15th) I'll have a better idea of how I can start back into intentionally paying stuff down. Until then, I'm just saving what I already had set up in my budget to save and putting everything else to paying stuff ahead, or at least marking it as paid in my register. Plus I still have a $100 cushion that I haven't had to tap into yet.

I won't be getting paid for Thanksgiving holidays (2 days) nor Christmas (1 day) plus I'm taking Christmas Eve off so I'll have about 4 days that I won't get paid for total. Which is about $200 on each check. Fortunately it's spread out a little. So we'll see when those checks arrive how that affects things.

I found out that COBRA doesn't include dental like they thought so my actual payment is less. Which means I need to call the dentist and find out how much it is out of pocket to pay for a cleaning and possibly postpone my appointment until I have insurance again.

First paycheck

October 17th, 2007 at 05:24 am

Got my first paycheck yesterday from the new job. It was only for 1 week though. They say it takes two pay periods for direct deposit to process. So it'll take me a couple more days to get it then deposit it.

I've paid most of the bills through the 11th of next month. I say pay and most but that's really not quite what I mean. I use Quicken and plug money in as future payments then only look at the ending balance to tell myself what I really have in the bank. That way the money is allocated. I check it every day to make sure if there's a payment I need to initiate that I do so. There's a couple of bills that I haven't paid yet, rather big ones. But I will have a full 2 week check before they're due so I'm not concerned. And I've left myself a $100 cushion instead of my usual $20 cushion as a 'just in case' buffer.

Since I don't have time to go out to the chiropractor I haven't been maxing out my medical budget. Normally I'd send that money off to the medical savings account I set up but since I'm going to be paying for COBRA I figure I'll just use that for part of it that way I don't have to drain so much out of savings.

I am still certain I'll be a'ok when all is said and done but my EF will definitely be drained. Although there's still the state kicker check, and possibly money from my dad to help out with things. Too many unknowns.

I'm still liking my job. I'm thinking about maybe asking, once I get permanently hired on, to change my schedule to come in an hour earlier. With all the food available at work I don't have to worry about packing a lunch or eating breakfast first and I shower at night now anyway because there just isn't time in the mornings. There's no reason I couldn't just get up at around the same time and catch an earlier bus. But it would make a world of difference in the evenings as I'd actually be able to exercise and stuff. We'll see when we get there though.

Just going to keep plugging along and hope I stay ahead of things. I'm really glad I have a little bit of an EF to support me through this.

Tuesday Deposit, Direct Deposit, Quitting one small job...

September 25th, 2007 at 05:37 pm

Tuesday Deposit.

$80 total, $60 from friend paying me back for concert ticket and $20 from my Monday night child care. All went straight into Savings. I also initiated the transfer of $100 from checking to savings today. Makes my total in savings finally well over $1000 which is good but I know it won't stay that way for long.

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Direct Deposit.

My checking account with Wells Fargo is only free on the condition that I have a direct deposit of at least $100/mo. My final paycheck from current job will deposit on October 5th meeting that requirement for October. I also just got the directions on how to sign up for direct deposit at the new job. It takes two pay periods for it to become active so it should be on in November and all will be well as far as my account goes. I also have an allotment that goes in from my brother who's paying me back that happens to be $100. I don't know if that counts as direct deposit or not. Still can't believe this is my last week here. I've been here over 10 years.

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I quit.

For a multitude of reasons, I have decided to quit my Sunday evening childcare job. It brought in $25/wk. I think I'll be ok without it as I never include it in my budget. I did it for about a year, that seems to be my limit on extra stuff. Ah well. I still have my Monday evening childcare job which brings in $20/wk.

Gearing up for change.

September 20th, 2007 at 08:08 pm

Today was payday. It's my second to the last paycheck from my current employer.

I paid all the bills I had to. Set aside money for a trip to Seattle next weekend (I'm carpooling so pitching in a little for gas). Set aside money for next month's bus pass that I'll need for new job (friend works someplace she can get one for half price and she won't need it for October so I'll be buying it from her at a discount). Paid off the small current balance on CC2 that's normally kept empty. And had $102 left over that's earmarked for savings but won't actually transfer until next week.

My roommate and I are throwing a party this weekend. We're going shopping tonight for food and other stuff for it. I have $32 from babysitting and what was left over from food and gas last paycheck. That should be plenty, especially since we're splitting the bill and we won't be buying any alcohol.

I am so paranoid about having enough money to pay for insurance and the other half of the month's worth of pay I'll need to come up with end of January that I've decided to charge some things. Specifically my clothes for work. I will be looking for good deals and such but for the most part I just want to go shopping once and not have to worry about work clothes for a while. I'm ok with paying interest since I know that worst case, I'll pay it all off with my tax return. Which means only a couple of months. If I find that I have more than enough money saved up to cover things then I'll pay it off sooner.

My current 'work clothes' are the same as my everyday clothes. Casual, jeans, tshirts. New job is in an office building with a business casual dress code. Granted, one of the programmers was in my interview wearing cords and a tshirt but I'm not going to be working for him. I have my interview clothes (one pair of slacks, one nicer button down shirt) and possibly one other top that would be acceptable. Past that, nothing. I hate shopping for clothes, with a passion. But I need to do it. This weekend I'll start out at Value Village and Goodwill. Next I'll hit up Ross and Marshall's. After that it just depends on how much time/energy I have to take on the rest of the Maul (Old Navy, Gap, Macy's, Nordstrom's, Sears, etc). Might check in at Avenue as well since that's where I got my slacks and they fit really well, just a little pricey even if I did get them on sale.

I think I can pull this off.

September 18th, 2007 at 03:54 pm

I debated about asking my dad for help with insurance. I still might but its hard to ask him for anything even though he tells me to if I need it.

This morning I got another bt offer for 0% until 4/2008 and a 3% fee with a max of $75. That got me thinking along the lines of, should I request a check just to have as backup funds and not cash it if I don't need it?

Here's how it breaks down...

By the end of this month I will have at least $1,000 in savings. Probably more but I won't know til I get paid. Add to that $200/mo repayments from my brothers guaranteed ($100 is via allotment straight to my bank account and the other I have access to his accounts so he is sure to pay me regularly). Over the course of the next 4 months that makes an additional $800. Plus there's the kicker check I'll be getting in December. They say the median amount is $260 or so, I plugged in numbers at a website and it showed more like $500 for me but I'm not 100% sure since I can't find my state tax forms.

I know I'll have other extra cash I'm just plotting worst case scenario. I'm also making the assumption that I can pay all my regular bills with whatever pay I get.

Ok so I will have to pay for COBRA in November and December. October should be covered by what I've already paid since we pay for the next month. January I'm going to go without and just get meds at Costco. That will satisfy the continuous coverage with less than 63 days of non coverage thing so I don't have to worry about pre-existing condition stuff. That's assuming I get hired on in January as benefits would start in February. Total costs for COBRA will be about $840 for the two months.

All told, even with not getting paid for holidays since I'll be contract, and with my first month once I get hired on, having to live on a smaller paycheck as I transition from every other week to once a month, I think I'll be ok.

My student loan that I've been working like crazy to pay off tells me I don't have to make a payment til January. So I think I'm going to take them up on it. I will make monthly payments of $20 + whatever interest has accrued but not my usual $60 plus whatever extra I can scrounge up. That will help. Hopefully I won't have to resort to using my cc to pay bills. But at least I have that option.

All told, I think I'm going to hold off on the bt offer. If I can make it through this and still have $500 in my EF, I will be a happy camper. If I can make it through this without having to charge anything, even if it means draining my EF completely, I will be fine with that too.

Job offer received!

September 17th, 2007 at 08:13 pm

I got a call this morning shortly after I got into work offering me the position if I was still interested. The gross amount is less than I'm making now, but the net will be comparable.

What it boils down to is, in the long run this will be the better position for me. I will actually be able to start using the degree I earned a few years ago and the potential for advancement is far greater.

Its going to cost me in the beginning. The contract place pays every two weeks and then once it rolls over to the new place then it will be once a month. But once I get on an even keel with them, all should be good.

I'm going to avoid using the credit card as much as possible, though I may charge my bus pass initially since there's no room for it in the budget just yet since I don't know what/when I'll actually be getting paid and I'll need the pass pretty much right away.

My first day of work will be October 1! I am so excited!

New jobs are spendy.

September 17th, 2007 at 03:43 pm

Not counting the need to buy more professional clothes even.

I talked with former co-worker about unused vacation time, then checked out the internet for laws. Apparently employers are not required to pay out vacation time unless it's specified in the employer policy (or whatever it's called). Yeah so it's not in our policy and I'm not sure I want to play hardball to force them to give it to me. Unfortunately I was sort of counting on having that money to pay for stuff like COBRA.

Contract work is usually paid weekly, or every other week. New job pays once a month on the 15th. I'd be contract for three months then switch to the other. Depending on how the COBRA thing works out I might be ok. But it means I'm going to not work so hard at paying stuff off and just save save save save. But budgeting for once a month pay will be interesting.

I'm going to talk to my dad and step mom and see if their offer still stands to help me out with medical stuff. Even if they could just cover one month of COBRA it would be a huge help.

Depending on when insurance would start at new place (sounded like pretty quick from what I've read) I might be able to get away with only one month of COBRA.

Of course, this is all hypothetical since I don't have the offer yet. When I spoke with former co-worker he said that one of the guys from my interview was in meetings all day on Friday. Hopefully that means they've decided to hire me. *cross fingers*

Job changes?

September 12th, 2007 at 05:50 pm

I had an interview today. It seemed to go well. Yesterday there was a panic moment when I saw the job posted at Craigslist that day. But when I was talking to them I found out they are looking to fill more than one position so that made me feel better.

Pros:

~ Growth potential. New company (NC) has 85 employees and has been growing at a rate of about 15% a year. Old company (OC) has 6 employees and hasn't had more than 9 in the past 9 years. There's no where else for me to go at OC and there's no real use of my second degree.

~ Perks. NC offers things like snacks and beverages free of charge plus breakfast on Friday mornings. Fridays they stop any real work early (though any emergencies are taken care of if they arise) and chill around the office playing poker etc. There's also a game room complete with foosball.

~ Opportunity to actually use both degrees (Accounting and Computer Science)

~ Benefits are fully paid by the employer

~ Start out with being able to earn 15 days of PTO right off the bat (only a loss of 5 vacation days from OC)

~ Ability to pay for mass transit passes with pre tax dollars.

~ Can cash out my vacation time from OC which will possibly offset any budget irregularities.

Cons:

~ Starting out will be contract to hire which means no benefits until actually hired. COBRA is $420/mo. Might have to research a short term insurance option.

~ OC is salary, contract will be hourly. Not sure what that will do to the budget.

~ Would need to update wardrobe since OC is an extremely casual environment and NC is at the least business casual.

Pay would roughly be the same. I figured out what my 'hourly' rate is and it was at the high end of their range that they were offering. With not having to pay for health benefits once I get hired (ie out of the contract which is only three months) it could actually mean more take home. Just a little bit interesting in the beginning switching from twice a month to whatever the contract pays (once a week? every other week?). Plus right now I technically get paid for something like 86.7 hours each check so yeah just will be interesting.

It is a really great opportunity, one I would jump at if offered. But the pay has to be a certain level or I can't even consider it. Though I do have a little bit of wiggle room now which is good so if need be I could go a little lower than I'm making right now just to get my foot in the door.

Suckered into it? Job change?

September 1st, 2007 at 12:07 am

I pre-ordered Harry Potter 7 not knowing it would result in a $5 gc from Amazon. But it had a catch, it had to be used by the end of August and it had to be used on a purchase of $20 or more.

I had plans to buy a new dvd player and had scoped one out on Amazon for $55. I had one $20 gc from July and was anticipating another from August that never showed up. Since today's the last day I can use the $5 I went ahead and purchased the dvd player, $49.99 - $25.00 in gc plus free shipping making the cost to me $24.99. Not a bad price for an anticipated purchase. I did receive $20 for September via PayPal (the place I was getting the gc's from monthly always had issues actually getting the gc's to me hence the reason I still don't have August's yet so starting for September we switched to PayPal payments) so I did transfer that to my bank account making my total purchase really only $4.99. I'm just annoyed because when the gc for August does finally arrive I'm going to have to find something to put it towards. (what they do is send me a code to log into 800giftcertificates and order a gift card, I just always chose Amazon because I figure there's always something smallish I'd like but can't justify.)

Now that I've made the purchase though I'm wondering if I wasn't suckered into using that $5 off since I could have waited til my gc came through and just let the $5 off expire. But I've been waiting all month to order this and I'm done waiting. It could be another month before the gc for August get straightened out.

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In other news...I may be changing jobs. I had a very promising screening interview yesterday and I should find out more next week. Their high end of the starting pay is about what I'm making now. Their benefits are just about fully funded, which is a big plus. They are in downtown and offer mass transit pass purchase with pre-tax dollars. (my roommate works about 5 blocks away and has free parking through work so carpool options abound) They have breakfast for the whole crew of 85 every Friday morning. Drinks and snacks are provided in the break room. And it would actually be using the second degree I acquired a few years ago along with my current skill set.

Downside...

Because of how I applied, through a middle company, I would be a contract employee for 3 months (unless they bought my contract out early) and that would mean no health insurance in the interim. I've looked into a couple of things, COBRA is $420/mo and I found a short term plan on eHealthInsurance for just $220/92 days with a $250 deductible and after that I'd only have to pay 20% of my prescriptions. It would probably cost me more than if I just like went to Costco for prescriptions but I don't know what the new company's 'pre existing condition' policy is so I'd prefer to stay insured as long as possible. I know my current one would still be active for a bit after I quit just not sure how far ahead we actually pay.

So lots of potential changes. I'm not sure how this would affect my budget. I'd be back to hourly for a time. At least that would mean I would get overtime if it happened. And no more on call/weekend work. More potential for advancement. Etc. Lots of plusses but the minuses must be weighed in as well.

A time ago, when I was researching job changes, my step-mom said they would help me out with my medical stuff should I run into any trouble with pre-existing condition clauses. Especially if that was the only thing keeping me from accepting a new position. I might actually bring it up with them again. It's not that I don't think I could cover it, I do have emergency savings, just I don't want to spend a lot right away since I don't know really how long between paychecks once I change jobs. If I get the offer that is.

Saved $50!

August 14th, 2007 at 09:11 pm

Just found out that one of my team-mates employers is letting us use 2 vans off his lot for our relay race that's about 10 days away! That's awesome! Of course, I've already sent my team captain a check for the van rental, and gas, and water. He'll reimburse me day of race. Which sucks in a way because I could use that money this weekend to go out of town but is good in another way since it'll give me money to have during the race (providing he gives me cash). Either way it's nice to know I'll be getting it back!

It was great while it lasted.

August 13th, 2007 at 07:45 pm

I just found out yesterday that the church I work for on Sunday Nights is disbanding. I see it as a mixed blessing. I wasn't sure how much longer I could keep it up. But I'll miss the regular paycheck. Of course, it's sad to see it go but from what I gathered, it was time.

I'll work next Sunday, the following week is their all church camp-out so they aren't meeting anyway, and then the holiday weekend. After the holiday there's a chance they might start up small groups and may request my services again. But it will depend on what night they do it on and how many kids/what ages/etc.

I do still have Monday night childcare that will be regular at least through November.

eBay

August 10th, 2007 at 07:46 pm

I'm trying eBay again to get rid of some action figures I have. I popped on there a couple of weeks ago to see how other sales for that particular tv show action figures were doing. I watched an auction for the same number of figures as I planned on selling at once end out at $82. Dang! It took me a couple of weeks but I finally got my act together and posted it with a slightly higher starting price and guess what? Auction ends in a day and I have.... 7 watches and 0 bids. *sigh* This is why I don't eBay stuff. I get all excited over potential selling and then watch people watch my auction but not actually bid.

There's another auction, posted after mine, for the same number of figures but with one different and a lower starting price. It has one bid. I'm hoping, against hope, that the final 24 hours will see a flurry of activity. Just one bid really, that's all I want. Ah well. If it doesn't sell I'll repost at a slightly lower price. But there's still time! It could happen! And it ends around noon pacific time tomorrow. I think that's a good thing, plenty of time for last minute bidders to duke it out....

Speaking of eBaying things...I still have the Smashing Pumpkins tickets. The gal I spoke to from my craigslist ad never called me on Saturday like she said she would. I called her and left a message. I emailed her Tuesday and basically said if she wasn't interested that was fine just to let me know. Now I've pretty much decided she's not interested and I'm moving on with life. There were two other people who had expressed interest in buying them but because I'd already spoken with the gal and anticipated her taking them, I told them they were gone already.

The main reason I was selling the tickets is I needed the cash. I'd spread a little thin with helping my brother out and it was more important to have cash than go to the concert. My brother paid me back about half of what he owes me so money really isn't an issue anymore. Plus I have a friend who wants to go with me if I do keep them and she'll pay me the $60 for the ticket.

I thought about posting them for sale on eBay but almost all the tickets for that specific concert are sold by people who don't even live in the area. Which means they bought the tickets for the sole purpose of reselling them. For some reason that just bothers me. It's one thing to go to garage sales, or scour the internet for good deals on things you can potentially fetch a nice return for on eBay. But to buy concert tickets for concerts not in your area just so you can resell them....seems wrong somehow. And if I posted mine for sale on eBay it just wouldn't be right. Though there was a part of me hoping I could fetch a higher price than I paid.

25 100s

August 8th, 2007 at 04:16 pm

My first attempt got lost in the ether...

My brother made his first installment to me of 2500 in cash. Its going in the bank today and as soon as it's registered as being deposited (it's cash so that should be almost immediately) here's how it's going to be dispersed:

220 - Wells Fargo Savings to pay back what I'd drawn specifically for him over the course of the year.
709 - Pay off credit card that's supposed to be cleared off completely.
1500 - Put on student loan that's at 13% (current total about $2131)

And the rest (about $70) will be used to buy gifts for my ex-roommate's bridal shower and wedding that's coming up fast.

It'll put my EF really close to my goal of $1000. It'll put a huge dent in my highest interest debt. It'll make it so I have a limit on what to spend on gifts. I will probably still charge the hotel room but I'm sharing it so it'll get paid off right quick.

I am SUPER excited right now!!

My brother and I made arrangements for the rest of his debt. He will repay me $100/mo starting in September and continue in that fashion until he gets his tax return. Then he'll pay the rest of the balance, or at least another large portion of it.

*happy dance*

August 4th, 2007 at 05:23 pm

My brother's bonus posted to his account today which means it'll probably officially post on Monday (its actually more showing as pending right now). That makes me happy!!

We are going to get together soon to discuss how he wants to spend it. He promised at minimum he'd give me $2k if not all of what he owes me (closer to $4.5k now)

I was sorely tempted to buy a laptop yesterday, Office Depot had a really good deal until I called to ask if they had any in stock and found that it has to be ordered at the store and shipping was $100. No thanks. I really don't need it right now just want it.

Nice start to the weekend. Smile

Here we go again.

August 3rd, 2007 at 06:22 pm

Vacation was good and bad for me. I spent a little more than I should have but not terrible. But I did get in the habit of using the credit card again. *sigh*

Brother is having a heck of a time holding down jobs in the summer. He got hired on one place that trained him for a day and a half, worked him for a day and a half, then realized they'd overstaffed and let him go. Only good thing that came of it was he got to buy a bus pass for half price.

In anticipation of possibly not having a roommate (I do, she paid rent early even) or possibly having to foot brother's rent I just started saving every extra bit that came in after my check on 6/5. Good thing I did too because he has not received his signing bonus yet and they didn't have him on the roster for the weekend he worked last month plus he spent about half of what his roommates gave him for rent. I wound up putting $470 in his account this morning for what he needs towards rent. *sigh* That would have almost completely paid off the extra spending I've been doing on the credit card.

However that wasn't all the money I had set aside. There's still $63 sitting in my account, plus $100 I'll be getting from selling my Smashing Pumpkins tickets, plus I'm babysitting tonight, plus I'll get $50 for child care on Sunday since the last time I worked the guy who pays me wasn't there, plus I'll get $20 for child care on Monday. All in all, I'll still have extra to throw at the credit card even after I pay my team captain $113 for the last bit of stuff that I owe him money on. And I have a bunch of computer gear to donate to a local computer recycling place. I've been putting it off because they ask for $10/monitor to dispose of it properly and I've got five of them. But I need to get them out of my place.

A week to 10 days is when they say his bonus will arrive. Unfortunately I have a feeling he's only going to pay me back about $2k and then make payments on the rest. Interest will still accrue until he pays off the part of the balance that was gained via a balance transfer on a credit card. I'm thinking $100/mo is what I'm going to require for repayment.

He's asked me to help him figure out what to do with his money because he doesn't want to completely blow through it. That makes me happy, that he asked for my help otherwise it'd be gone in no time. He wants to buy a car, realizes he needs to save for next summer when he'll be out of school, and wants to have a little bit of fun with it too.

few things

July 24th, 2007 at 05:20 pm

I am on vacation this week. I'm pretty much just hanging out at home and visiting people that I don't see regularly that are also at home during the week and finding places for the items I'm pulling out of my storage unit that will close on the 31st. I'm trying hard to make that not mean more spending since I have the opportunity to go out more. We'll see.

I called my dr's office and asked if I could pay half of my bill this month and the other half next month. They looked at my account and didn't have a problem with it. While I technically have the money to pay it all right now I'm trying to stick with only using money set aside for medical to pay medical. And I know I can pay the rest of it next month.

I will be co-leading a 2 hour class on Basic Finance Skills in Oct/Nov. I met last night with the gal I'll be leading with and need to come up with a good outline soon. I'm really excited and super nervous. I talk about this stuff all the time but not in this sort of setting. So I'll be rummaging around the 'net so I can have stuff down on paper that way I don't forget my speaking points. Smile

I'm babysitting tonight, probably for about 3 hours so that should mean about $30. I haven't bought a gift for the wedding I'm going to this weekend so I think I'll set whatever I get from babysitting as my limit since I wasn't sure where I was going to pull the money from and the credit card had been calling my name but I've been working hard to silence it. Smile

Where did it all go?

July 18th, 2007 at 08:49 pm

I really wish I knew where my money went this last pay period. I have no good answers for it. I took some from my gas money to pay for groceries and a small meal out. But then I got $15 from winning a pool as to when my friend's baby would be born. Sorta evens out.

Ok so here's where the confusing stuff comes in.

- I do have a roommate moving in sometime after the 21st. She will be giving me money for August rent so I don't have to hold onto money to cover it but I'm doing so anyway because I just want to have all my bases covered. Right now I have $50 in an 'Unknown' category. I'll be adding $60 from my check on the 20th plus $45 from childcare (maybe more if i do any other babysitting, a friend just called to see if i could sit but we haven't finalized that I actually will be doing it). So that's at least $155 not counting any extra in my check on the 5th or the $100 that's auto deposited on the 1st from my step-brother. I need $287.50 for her half of rent.

- I have two medical bills due on the 31st. One from my clinic for $160 and one from my dentist for $28. There's $93 in my medical savings account and there'll be $15 left from my medical savings budget on the 20th. Still a tad short of the total due but I may just pay the dentist and call the clinic to see if I can pay half now and half next month.

- I owe my team captain $114 for my part of the van rental, my part of gas, and my part of water for the relay. It's not due really until August 24th but it's something I need to remember I have to pay. He figured high on the gas money so I might even get some back but it won't really be much.

- My brother has not been fully processed yet so his signing bonus won't arrive until at least 10 days after he is fully processed. I have a feeling that may not actually show up in his bank account until after rent is due. Which means he may need my help to pay for rent ($250+). Though he did just call and said that his recruiter told him today that his packet had left his hands and is at the state office. Once he's in the computer his signing bonus should come pretty quick.

- I need to get my oil changed. I actually have enough in the budget to cover it but it's an added thing that I need to keep reminding myself to do before my trip to Seattle.

- I have almost $70 for my trip to Seattle. That should be enough to cover gas and ferry fare but probably not eating out depending on how much I do and where. Friend that I'm visiting knows how budget conscious I am but she's planning something special for Friday night.

- I have another trip to Seattle planned for in August and I'm hoping I can just tell my friend that's going with me that she doesn't have to pay for the concert ticket in exchange for her paying for gas and taking care of our lodging on Saturday night. We'll see how that goes.

- I bought concert tickets for my brother for his birthday only to find out his friend bought him a ticket and got slightly better seats. I'm debating about using the tickets (I wouldn't mind going but I wouldn't have bought them for me) or selling them since the concert is sure to sell out (Smashing Pumpkins, my brother's favorite band that he never saw live). I could make a tidy profit off them.

- I have two extra tickets for the concert in Seattle, I may be selling them to other friends in the area or just selling them period. I'm waiting til it gets closer and the show sells out.

- I need to have an extra $60 to pay the gas for someone to pick me up from the relay so I don't have to pay $196 to stay one night in a hotel at the finish line. Again, don't need it until August 24th but still need to keep it in mind.

I think that September will be a better month for me. Just because once September hits all the big stuff I have going on should be over and I can be back on a more even keel. Except for the whole going to my current roommate's wedding which is 4 hours away but I'm already planning on car-pooling with at least one other person and sharing a hotel room.

bits and pieces.

June 28th, 2007 at 09:45 pm

I'm a little annoyed with myself. But before I get to that, I've decided to not do the 0% BT. It's not worth it right now as it's too short of time for something to go wrong.

~ The $400 that I had planned on paying off of CC2 before interest started accruing, may not be going anywhere right away and that makes me sad.

~ If I choose to stay in my apartment I will owe my roommate $200-$300 since she paid the deposit but is leaving. I think it was $200 but since I didn't pay it I don't remember exactly. I told her to take it off of July's rent so thats part of why I can't pay off CC2 right away.

~ If I choose to move (I finally heard back from a house I had inquired after beginning of the month) my housing costs will go up slightly. Rent and utilities combined are only $12 more per month and if the house is where I think it is gas usage won't go up that much but I may not be able to walk to work/gym as often. Depending on the new living situation I may still have to have a storage unit but I've spoken with another friend about 'renting' space in her garage for the same price I was paying before.

~ I have to pay $196 for two nights at a motel after the walking relay I'm doing. It's annoying because all hotel/motels in the area require a 2 night stay for that particular weekend and that is literally the cheapest out there. The next cheapest is three times the rate. The money is due before August 1st and is the second reason I won't be paying off the CC before interest accrues. Though I could take money out of savings but I'm trying to not do that I want to build savings not take away from it.

~ If I don't move and I can de-clutter enough to store it all at the apt I currently live in that will save me $60/month.

~ I'm slightly splurging and getting a massage this weekend but it's for medical reasons so I'll take the money out of my medical funds. I think I have/had a pinched nerve. I had tingling sensations in my legs but when I'd shift how I was sitting it would go away. After the first visit to the chiro it went from both legs to just my left leg. After the second visit to the chiro it's lessened even more but now the muscle that feels like it goes from about mid butt to past the knee is irritated by about mid-day which makes sitting in any position un-bearable. My friend is a massage therapist and sometimes gives me discounts because I do computer work for her. I'm planning on paying full price though until she tells me otherwise.

~ I got the explanation of benefits from my last Echo, they remembered to bill my insurance this time. It's $159 that I'll owe and I'm hoping that it'll be on the next billing cycle. If it is, then there's a good chance I can pay it all when I get it. My medical savings is currently at $57.

~ My brother is getting a signing bonus, I just don't know when yet. When he does he'll be paying off the money he owes me (I'm assuming based on how much money he'll be getting). Right now his outstanding balance with me is at about $3,600. But it'll be 10 - 30 days before he gets his bonus and he says knowing his luck it'll be 30 days.

~ I had three no drive days but was hoping for five. Today the weather wasn't right to walk to work though I did get in a 5.8 mile walk before work. But I did drive into work and I now have plans for after that may entail driving straight from work (ie no time to walk home and get the car). But I did bring lunch and dinner to work with me so I won't be tempted to go out for either.

Tax Freedom Day.

June 20th, 2007 at 05:28 pm

I know that the official 'tax freedom day' was in April (http://www.taxfoundation.org/taxfreedomday/) but because of my extra job that doesn't pay much I decided to postpone changing my withholdings by a couple of months hoping it will still balance out. I know it will with student loan interest but still better to get $100 back than to pay $100 right?

Even if I quit this job now I'd still get a W2 as I've officially made over $600. I'm excited to see what the difference is in my check come July 20th (my check on July 5th will have other extras in it so it won't be a good gage).

Tuesday Deposit

May 23rd, 2007 at 12:01 am

No deposit today. The guy who pays me on Sundays was home sick so I'll just get paid double on this Sunday. I did get $20 cash for last night but I'm going to a surprise party on Saturday which includes going to the zoo (yay for zoo pass! saves me $9.75) and they've asked everyone to bring $20 if possible so they can hopefully combine resources and buy the new couple a BBQ and patio set. Makes me wonder exactly how many people are invited. I won't be able to make it to the wedding so I'll just do this bit of celebrating with them and consider that my gift. There's still talk of going out after the zoo so I might be in a position to spend a little more but we'll see. I'm going to avoid it at all costs.

I got my supposed to be empty CC paid off before interest accrued. The coast rental guy sent me back my money in the form of a check instead of as a credit to my card so I just turned around and paid it. Plus my childcare earnings from last week went to what was left over from the extra concert tickets. I'll be waiting til at least a month before the concert (mid-July) before trying to sell them. I might have friends who want them but no one is willing to commit to something so early. Lots of waiting. That's ok, I know they'll get used one way or another.

I went on a retreat this past weekend and I'm pleased to say that even though I drove, I had three passengers who all chipped in for gas. That makes me happy, even though it probably would have been ok even if they hadn't.

My friend is no longer in need of extra support so I'm back to using my extra cash for savings, well at least that's the intent. Next week that's the plan. I might be babysitting on Friday. I'm pretty excited about that.

NFO My Survey

May 16th, 2007 at 08:43 pm

Has anyone actually done any at home product testing for them? I just completed a product test and was very disappointed in the amount of points I received for doing the survey. I have no problem with doing 10 point surveys for them to find out if I qualify to continue to a higher point survey. But when I take 4 weeks and test out a couple versions of a product for them, I expect to get more than just 10 points for each product (20 points total). Does that seem unreasonable to anyone else? I've emailed them already about it. I let the first one slide because I thought that perhaps more points would be awarded after the completion of the task. I'm sorry, but my time is worth more than that.

While waiting for a prescription to be filled (which was free thanks to a coupon from the manufacturer) I browsed the electronics section. I found a digital camera case on sale 50% off which made it $3.50! I carry my digital with me everywhere and especially since I spent so much to get it fixed I really wanted to get a case to keep it safe. It fits perfectly in the case, there's room for spare batteries and memory sticks in another pocket, it has a belt loop that velcros on and a shoulder strap. Quite the bargain I thought.

I also looked at their cassette adapters since I'm going on a trip and might need to buy one since my friend's iTrip is broken. (The iTrip makes it so iPods can play through the radio) In the mp3 section they were $20, in the audio section they were $10. For the same thing. I could understand the difference if the $20 one had a special iPod connector but both just plug in through the headphone jack. My roommate probably has one so I'm holding off til I find out if she can lay hands on it or not.

I also bought replacement rechargable batteries since I can't find the ones I have (but I know where the charger is) since I blow through regular batteries in my camera pretty fast and some rubber cement so I can make a personalized birthday card. Plus I got a digital picture printed out (again to make said birthday card). Spent about $13 something on all that.

Money in Paypal

May 11th, 2007 at 06:45 pm

I have about $22 sitting in my Paypal account right now. It's accumulated from various Pinecone surveys and/or getting paid for writing blogs on my myspace account. Since I started giving Kiva gift certificates as gifts and buying things now and again from places that accept Paypal I have found it useful to just leave the money there and be 'surprised' because what I wind up spending is less than I thought because I usually forget the money is there until I get a notice from Paypal stating that another deposit has been made.

In the past it hasn't really been more than maybe $10 before I bought something. Now that it's over $20 I'm wondering if I shouldn't transfer that much out and put it to better use (savings, etc). Or just leave it because birthdays are inevitable and having money there would be useful.

Any thoughts?

Catching up.

April 17th, 2007 at 05:36 pm

Seems like forever since I've blogged. Probably because I had a four day weekend (burned up my last two vacation days) and haven't really been around the computer much.

I found out that I'll be reimbursed for most of what I spent on food for the baby shower I helped co-ordinate last Saturday. I knew that the soon-to-be grandmother had sent a check to the gal organizing everything but didn't know how much. I spent about $48 total and the organizer bought stuff too. Turns out between the two of us we only spent $16 more than what the grandmother sent us so we split the difference. I was planning on donating $20 to the cause so that works fine for me. She'll give me the check on Thursday.

I also still had money from the cash I got paid last week Monday so I included that in my Tuesday Deposit. Total to be deposited is $75, would have been $100 but the guy who pays me on Sunday didn't have a check with him so I'll get it on Wednesday.

I have decided to join eHarmony. The guy I have dated a couple of times from the free communication weekend isn't working out and they're having a special (that they run often apparently) where you can get three months for the price of one. I'm not actually committing to it until I finish sorting out the guy but I took the $60 out of my Tuesday Deposit so I'm still putting $15 into savings today.

I just got an email from the gal in charge of the Monday childcare that I've been doing and it might actually turn into a regular thing. As much as I'd love to pick up every possible extra dime, I can't commit to every week and keep my sanity. Especially since I'll most likely be doing Wednesdays as well, the first three of every month. So I think we've decided on every other week, with a second person helping which actually drops the pay from $25 to $20 because she only has $40 in the budget for child care. But I'm ok with that. I also told her I could be a backup on the off weeks in case something happens at the last minute with the regular sitters.

One of my drugs is coming out with a controlled release version (meaning I would just have to take one a day instead of two a day). Apparently not all insurance companies are covering it so I called mine today to see if it was. It is but on the most expensive tier, I pay $35 for it now and it would be $50. Since I take other things twice a day it's not that big of a deal for me to continue taking it twice a day. But I will have my dr write me out a prescription for it because I'll be getting a coupon for a free 30 day supply from the manufacturer. The other good news with that particular drug is it'll be coming out in generic soon too which means it should drop in price from $35 to $10.

And in non-financial news, I'm doing the Photo 365 thing too. I included the link in my links section but here it is: http://picasaweb.google.com/ldyfaile/Photo365 I plan on updating it as often as I can. I will take a photo a day just might not upload it that day. It looks like you can subscribe to a RSS feed as well for it. I love Google.

How to take care of me and get out of debt too.

April 4th, 2007 at 10:49 pm

I'm trying hard to find that balance. I'm not good at taking care of myself, I am good at running myself ragged especially with odd jobs here and there.

I just turned down another night of child care work this week. I had the opportunity to work tonight (but I couldn't because I'm attending a surprise party that I'm planning) and I just got a call to see if I could work on Friday night (I can't because I've made plans with my roommate already).

I did however work earlier in the week on Monday, that was unexpected. And I will be working the next two Mondays and the next two Wednesdays. So it's not like I'm always turning down extra work.

Part of me wants to do as much as I can to be rid of my debt. I realize that $25 here and $25 there isn't much but this week it would have been $100 total instead of $50 and normally it's $25.

Perspective. It's all about perspective.

I need to spend time with my friends, even if it involves a little money here and there. Because life is too short not to spend it with those that mean a lot to you. Plus I have a spot in my budget for just such an occasion. I need to focus on paying off debt. And I do that as well as much as possible. But I can't let it totally consume my life. It's bad enough it consumes my thoughts as much as it does. I don't mind it, it keeps me focused.

I can't wait for tomorrow. Tomorrow is a double pay day. I get paid, and get to pay my regular bills. Plus the rest of the money that's been on hold gets officially deposited into my account so I can actually pay some things off/down. That makes me happy and excited so I want it to be Thursday already. Smile


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