Friday, March 30, 2012

Debt vs. Buying a House

So, I went ahead and made the payment to our debt, rather than putting it into savings for a down payment. I feel good about doing it this way. As anxious as I am to get out of our studio and into a home, I know it's the right thing to wait. So, wait we will!

Hope you all have a nice weekend :)

Thursday, March 29, 2012


We're kind of stuck right now. The "plan" has been to pay off our debt and then save money for a down payment on a house or condo. Don't get me started on which (a house or condo) because we've gone back and forth on that about a million times.

The newest thing is my husband's obsession with getting into a house ASAP. He is tired of our apartment and wants a place we can call our own. I get that, I really do. I want one too. I'm tired of being cramped in a dark studio and having ants infest our place each time it rains. I want something bright and new. But, I also want to be out of debt. The last thing I want to do is get ahead of ourselves too soon and end up house-poor.

Tomorrow is my payday. The plan is to send a good amount in towards our debt. Unless something big changes tonight, I'm still planning on putting that money towards a debt payment and not towards a down payment. We'll see!

Monday, March 26, 2012

My Weekly Money Check-Up 3/26/12

Photo is from My Pretty Pennies

Here is my Weekly Money Check-Up, courtesy of My Pretty Pennies.

1. The most I’ve spent this last week was on
taxes. Still saving up the $6K I believe we'll need for taxes next month.

2. Today I am thankful for laughter! I really have a great time laughing and hanging out with my husband. He makes me smile hundreds of times per day :) Laughter really is the best medicine.

3. Money can’t buy happiness. One free thing I did last week that made me happy was downloaded "Draw Something"on our iphone and ipad (both items are courtesy of my work, so please don't think I purchased those! There's no way I could justify buying those treats.). The hubby and I spent most of the weekend lounging around drawing things! I was surprised by the amount of detail my husband put in his pictures. He's quite the artist :)

4. I will consider this week a success if I get those damn test results that I'm waiting on. But, since I guess that's kind of out of my control, I'll pick another. This week will be a success if I am able to find my husband's last pay statement from that job that didn't send him a W-2. Rather than guess at the numbers, I'd love to place my hands on the actual pay statement. We moved last year, so it may still be in one of the boxes in our closet. My goal this week is to find it!

5. One thing I love about my home is the location! It's close to our jobs and many stores and restaurants. We are sure going to miss that when we move someday!

I hope you all have a wonderful week!

Friday, March 23, 2012


I love my husband's new job! He is challenged, fulfilled and most of all... appreciated! His boss mentioned at lunch last week that he is one of the best employees in the department. Then she came up to him at the end of the week and gave him an envelope with a couple of movie tickets. Wow, verbal praise and a little something extra. Score! You can bet we'll be going to the movies this weekend :)

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

My Weekly Money Check-Up 3/20/12

(Photo courtesy of My Pretty Pennies)

Here's My Weekly Money Check-Up, courtesy of My Pretty Pennies.

1. The most I’ve spent this last week was on taxes... again!

2. Today I am thankful for good days at work :) They aren't as frequent as I'd like, so I'm grateful when I have them.

3. Money can’t buy happiness. One free thing I did last week that made me happy was going to the local St. Patrick's Day parade. It was fun to get out (even in the rain!) to watch the festivities.

4. I will consider this week a success if I get some test results back. I went to the Dr recently for some joint pain I was having in my hand and she took a ton of x-rays and ran some blood work and the labs came back abnormal. I went back in today for more tests. She thinks it may be lupus. Don't know too much about it, so I've been reading up a bit. I'll be happy if I get the test results back this week since I'm anxious to know one way or the other what is going on.

5. If I could afford one unnecessary luxury, I would have someone come clean my house! I'm allergic to dust and kind of lazy, so some help around the house would be my luxury!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Wish Shopping!

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Today the hubby and I had a pretty good day, despite some heavy rain we got caught in while watching a parade. After the parade we went to the mall and did some "wish shopping". I love this concept the hubby recently introduced to me. We go into shops and look at the things we'd love to have if we had an unlimited budget. It's a fun way to pass the time and it keeps us out of trouble because we never actually purchase anything - it's all about wishing and not really shopping. I highly recommend it... as long as you have the will power to walk out of a shop, even if you fall in love with something you think you just have to have :)

Thursday, March 15, 2012


Good advice!

I got paid today. If it weren't for owing money for (bleeping) taxes, today would have been the day I made our final payment to CC #2. Oh well. We are one day closer to our goal.

Today I spent a while looking at the budget. When it gets this close to the end, there isn't much to do besides go through the motions. The spreadsheets are done and require very little tweaking, but I still stare at them for hours on end, looking for a hidden secret or ways to cut back more or pay off higher interest faster. But, there's nothing really to change. Now, it's just up to me to stay on track and get it done. Pay the bills, save for taxes and look forward to the day when this is over. It's like a mantra I tell myself over and over.

I look forward to the day I won't have to :)

Wednesday, March 14, 2012


As I get closer to being out of debt, my mind starts to wander more. I find myself dreaming about future possibilites more now. It's exciting to think that after July, the money we get will be for us to use for our future. No more paying for mistakes of the past.

Tomorrow is payday for me and it's completely earmarked for bills and taxes. Kind of boring, but I'm okay with that. The faster I get these bills paid off, the faster I can start to make my dreams become a reality!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Thankful for Insurance!

I'm especially thankful for insurance lately. Over this past week I went to the eye doctor and got two new pairs of glasses (one regular pair and one pair of sunglasses). Then I went to my first mammogram. Lastly I had an appointment yesterday to have my hand pain evaluated. I had 18 x-rays done and blood drawn. I'm looking forward to the results later this week. I can't image how much these things would have cost without insurance. So, today I'm thankful for insurance :)

Monday, March 12, 2012

Weekly Money Check-Up 3/12/12

(Photo courtesy of My Pretty Pennies)

Happy Monday! Here's my Weekly Money Check-Up, courtesy of My Pretty Pennies.

. The most I’ve spent this last week was on taxes. Enough said!

2. Today I am thankful for health insurance. More to come on that tomorrow.

3. Money can’t buy happiness. One free thing I did last week that made me happy was listened to some Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar music. I made up a "relaxation" mix a while back and periodically listen to it. Whenever I do, it puts a smile on my face :)

4. I will consider this week a success if I blog a good amount. My computer at work is not letting me get on the internet, which just means blogging from home at night. That doesn't always work for me, so if I make it work, I'll consider this week a success!

5. My favorite spring flower is yellow daffodils. They symbolize spring for me. I love seeing them! They are so bright, delicate and cheery.

Hope you all have a good week!

Friday, March 9, 2012


I thought that was a super cute picture :)

I'm in a bit of a funk at work. I haven't shared too much about it, but since my company went through a transition last fall and my job has significantly changed and I'm not loving it. I am loving the paycheck however! I got a nice bump up in salary (to my highest amount ever) but with that, came a lot of responsibilities that I am not trained or educated in, nor do I have an interest in.

I have my Masters degree in one field and 90% of my job is doing things that have nothing to do with it. But again, the pay is pretty good and honestly, the workload isn't that difficult. I just don't like being accountable for things I don't know anything about or have any interest in learning.

So, rather than sit back and bitch about it, I've gone on two interviews over the past month. Let me start by saying that I suck pretty bad at interviewing. I have a hard time thinking on my feet and remembering what my past successes have been. The first interview, I knew I bombed, while I was still there. I wrote that one off rather quickly. This second one threw me for a loop. I phone interviewed with 2 people and then actually met 10 in person. 10 people. I went to the office twice and really thought I did pretty well. I found out yesterday that they went with someone else. I was a little hurt and surprised. Honestly, I was uncertain if I even wanted the position because it would be a pay cut but at least it was in my field. It was still kind of a bummer though. Oh well.

This is where I praise the hubby a bit. He knew I was a little down and he surprised me by picking up a couple of discount movie tickets at work (so proud of how frugal he has become!) and taking me out for a little date after work. He knows how much I love movies, so he brought me to a romantic comedy. We saw The Vow. It was a cute, light film - just what I needed to take my mind off of things.

So, I'm happy it's Friday and I have nothing planned for the weekend, but to sit back and see where things go. TGIF :) Have a good one!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

NetFlix vs. RedBox

I decided to end my relationship with NetFlix today. Previously I had raved about the plan, however, like many relationships, it has run its course.

Although I find the convenience of NetFlix unbeatable, I find the selection of online streaming options to be very limited and I'm too cheap to pay more than $7.99 per month, so I could also get them sent to my house. More often than not, I find myself stopping at the local RedBox machine on the way home to pick up a movie. The selection is usually larger and the cost is less.

Plus, RedBox occasionally does promotions where they let you rent for free. Today is one of those days. If you enter Thanks2U at checkout, you get a movie for free. Not bad, RedBox, not bad!

Wednesday, March 7, 2012


So, I did it! Today I went for my very first mammogram. I thought the cartoon above was a good depiction of how I felt afterward. Just kidding. It really wasn't that bad. It's one of those things that people talk about and it grows to something bigger and much worse in your mind and then it's not that horrible when it happens. Or at least that was my experience anyway!

It's days like to today that I really appreciate having medical insurance. Although, there are lots of valuable resources available for those without insurance if you know where to look. The Susan G. Koman website has great information available about breast cancer and they are helpful info if you can't afford to get a mammogram. They offer low or no cost solutions on their website, so there is no excuse not to get squished!

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Another Benefit of Renting...

We currently rent a tiny studio apartment. Some days I dream about what it will be like when we own our own home. I longingly imagine spacious rooms, an updated kitchen, a tranquil bathroom and a tropical oasis in the backyard. Ahhhh.

Well, this past weekend our refrigerator stopped working. The food in our freezer got ruined and our fridge just wouldn't stay cool. A quick text message to our landlord and before too long, he said we'd be getting a new one. Nice!

Back in December, right at Christmas, our stove completely died. That kind of stunk for us and we weren't able to make a holiday dinner as planned. After a few days though our landlord replaced it for us. Free of charge.

Guess this is one of the perks of renting, huh? We would have had to pay about $1,000 to have these items replaced on our own. It makes renting seem like not such a bad idea... for now :)

Monday, March 5, 2012

My Weekly Money Check-Up! 3/5/12

Here's this week's Weekly Money Check-Up, courtesy of My Pretty Pennies.

1. The most I’ve spent this last week was on
our taxes. I've started to put away every dollar I can get my hands on, towards this bill.

2. Today I am thankful for having insurance. This week I will be going for my first mammogram and I'm happy to have insurance to cover the visit.

3. Money can’t buy happiness. One free thing I did last week that made me happy was checked out a new (to us) place along the California coast. It was beautiful and we had a wonderful time. We only spent 75 cents (for a water) but otherwise the day was free!

4. I will consider this week a success if I make 2 more Dr. appointments. I NEED to have an eye exam and get some prescription glasses with my FSA (Flexible Spending Account) funds. I also have been having severe pain in my hand and need to get it checked out. I'll consider this week a success once I do these things. It's just tough going to Dr. appointments when you have a job. I hate missing too much work.

5. I consider myself an
introvert! Although I do come out of my shell once you get to know me a bit, I HATE being the center of attention and really prefer to be alone or with a small group, rather than a large one.

Hope this week goes well for everyone!

Saturday, March 3, 2012

The Numbers May Seem Off A Bit...

After I updated my financial status earlier this week, I took another look at the numbers. I thought they may seem off to those who read my blog regularly. On average, we send about $3K +/- per month to our creditors, so why would it take 5 months for us to pay down the seemingly small amount of debt we currently have?

Well, there are a few reasons and none of these are included in the status update numbers -

1) Taxes. We believe we owe $6K in taxes this year.

2) We booked our celebration trip and wanted to pay for it in full when the bill came in, so that pushed things out a little bit.

3) My hubby has some back child support due that I haven't been sharing on my blog.

Actually, I've never shared that my husband has a child from his previous marriage. That's right, I'm a step-mom :) Unfortunately my hubby fell behind on his payments when he wasn't working full time and has been trying to catch up. Now that we are married and I consider this debt one of our joint obligations, I've put this on our list of items to pay off quickly. I'd rather not get into exact figures here, but it's included in the overall bunch of bills that will be PAID IN FULL by the end of July. Now that my hubby is working full time, this shouldn't be an issue again in the future.

There, that's everything.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Weight Loss Update

I have to say... I'm kinda rocking my weight loss challenge. Since getting serious on Atkins (almost 3 weeks ago), I've been doing great! I actually hit my 10 lb weight loss goal today. It happened faster than I thought it would.

The other night was challenging though. We had a pizza party at work and since pizza is my favorite meal, I didn't know how I would be able to handle it. Well... I DID GREAT! I had a small side salad and 2 slices of pizza but I only ate the toppings off of the pizza. I got to enjoy the taste of it, but not the fullness I normally feel after having a couple of slices of pizza. I hope hitting the 10 lb mark will help keep me motivated to stay on track.

Have a fun and frugal weekend!

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Status Update

I did a status update this week on my debt repayment (see over there >>>).

I decided to add my "debt paid off" amount as well. Previously I only had my original debt and current debt. Well, in hopes to keep me motivated and moving forward, I included the new number. All I can say is "Wow"!