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A nice tuesday . . .

April 18th, 2006 at 09:01 pm

Today was very nice at work, busy but not crazy. Getting home was a bit rough, we have the Chinese president in town and all the various security seriously messed up my bus schedule.

Rather than wait will the throng of people at my bus stop, I decided to check out a near by clothing store. I have a gift certificate that still had a balance and is almost a year old (I'm not much of a clothing shopper).

I ended up finding a really great pair of cropped pants that fit really well and were on sale. I still had to pay a little over the amount of the GC, but not bad at all. I hate clothes shopping, so if I have the money I'll generally just buy what I find. I think the last time I bought some form of clothing was a couple years ago when I bought a new swim suit.

Anyway, some other spending, but not bad.


Tues, 4/18:

$7.00 cigarettes
$13.05 clothing

$141.82 left in budget 'til 4/27

Work shenanigans

April 17th, 2006 at 08:51 pm

Long day at work. We're going through a bit of a management transition and so are understaffed. Our new manager doesn't technically start until May, but has been in to help out.

I'm thinking I'll need to sit down with her and discuss my duties and how much authority the previous manager granted me. We had a staff meeting today, and I was left completely out of the loop as to what was going on - even though I am a manager, just the lower-rung manager. It's frustrating, because now after working hard at my position I have to prove myself all over again. Fun times Smile

I'm sure it'll all work out for the best, I just get frustrated if I feel like I'm not appreciated. We'll see how things go . . .

I was paid last Friday, here's how the budget for two weeks breaks down:

$855.63 pay

$262.50 half of May rent
$100.00 regular private student loan payment
$176.54 extra private student loan payment
$270.00 "spending" budget

My spending budget is a bit high this pay period because we planned a stock up trip to Costco. So far things are looking good, definitely some spending but I have stayed in budget.


Fri, 4/14:
$2.00 coffee
$6.00 cigarettes

Sat, 4/15:
$70.00 groceries (Costco)
$5.69 drug store (toiletries)
$15.99 dinner out

Sun, 4/16:
no spending

Mon, 4/17:
$2 soda
$6 cigarettes

$161.82 left in budget 'til 4/27


Sat, 4/15:
$0.50 drug store savings

$0.50 to be used 4/28 for extra student loan payment

March Final Numbers

April 16th, 2006 at 10:20 pm

So, I have the final numbers for March. It was kind of a weird month, but good. I get paid every other week, so March was one of those months where I get three paychecks. That skewed some of my percentages, but in a good way Smile Here's the break down of my budget:

Must Haves (goal 50% or $1360.35)
~ Actual: 31.9% or $868.79

Save (goal 30% or $816.21)
~ Actual: 48.2% or $1312.59

Wants (goal 20% or $544.14)
~ Actual: 19.9% or $540.91


Here's the break down of debt/savings in March, and the change since February:


~ $18.64 short-term savings
(down $93.42 - used for planned Dentist visit)
~ $1.01 long-term savings
(no change)
~ $1,029.50 IRA
(up $8.26)
~ $3,334.83 401K
(up $340.26)
~ $376.29 vested Pension
(up $35.96)

Total Savings: $4,762.36


~ $819.14 Private Student Loan 1
(down $836.05) Smile
~ $3,229.66 Private Student Loan 2
(down $30.79)
~ $8,250.79 Government Student Loan
(down $71.68)

Total Debt: $12,299.59

My private student loan is getting so low! It should be paid off in May. Very exciting.

I'll post later with my new budget for the next couple weeks.

Finished taxes :)

April 12th, 2006 at 10:00 pm

I finished my boyfriend's taxes this evening. I did my own a while ago, but had been putting off sitting down and doing his. He really would do his own taxes, but since I volunteered the first year we were together it has kind of become my job. Yep, I'm the organized, dependable one in my relationship . . . The one that remembers taxes are due soon, or that we really should mail out those utility payments Wink

Both of our taxes are so simple though, it really doesn't take that long. A W-2 and a couple 1099s and we're good to go . . . He does have to pay this year, same as last year, but it's what we expected so no big deal.

In other news, I went over budget Frown Well, only by $1.59 but still. I had been doing so well. I blame work, but really I shouldn't have bought coffee on Tuesday. It was my own fault . . .

In my defense, it was a crazy day. You know how you walk into a bank and there are all these workers at desks? Yeah, well, my branch normally has 4 or 5 of us to help the "platform" side. Not on Tuesday. Nope, Tuesday it was just me. Yep, just little me to do the job of 4 people. And only 2 tellers for half the day! We normally have 5!! So, yeah, I shouldn't have bought a coffee, but I reeeeaaalllly enjoyed it at the time Wink



Tuesday, 4/11:
$15.00 cigarettes
$3.99 coffee

Wed, 4/12:
no spending

-$1.59 in budget ending 4/13

New goal for savings

April 10th, 2006 at 05:08 pm

I had the day off today, and spent it relaxing on my deck (it's sunny here!! yeah!) and doing some financial upkeep.

I posted earlier that I may have to adjust money that is set aside for the dentist and our vacation in June (I call this "short/term savings" just 'cause I use that title for expenses I have to save up for and are planned but aren't regular expenses - such as vacations, gifts, dentist/doctor, etc.). Anyway, I figured I can adjust to setting aside $45 per paycheck instead of $38. That'll be $135/month and will safely fund the vacation and the dental bills.

I will have to lower my extra debt payments, but I'll still pay off my private student loans in May and October. I had planned on paying the second in November, but with all the extra payments I have been making it moved back a month.

In other news, I decided to give ebookdrop one more try. I still have a few books that I don't want to go through the effort of listing on half.com or ebay since they would get very small amounts. I'll send one in tomorrow, we'll see how quickly I receive payment.


no spending

$17.40 left in budget 'til 4/13


$1.19 ebookdrop

$3.68 to be used 4/14 for student loan payment
$1.19 pending

Catch up post . . .

April 10th, 2006 at 12:03 pm

Well, I haven't posted in a while. First, I've been really busy at my job and had family visit this past weekend. Second, our computer has been down some of the time. My boyfriend built his own computer and over the past couple of weeks has been upgrading the operating system and various other things. Meaning quite a bit of the time, I haven't had internet access at home.

Since it's been so long since a post, I don't think I'll update with all the spending on a daily basis. Suffice it to say, things are going well. I was paid last Friday and stayed in budget until pay day. This pay period (ending on the 13th) still counts towards "March" since March was one of those weird months where I had three paychecks.

Here's a break down of my third check spending:

$838.30 paycheck
+ $100.45 end of month incentive check

$397.75 Short-Term save (vacation, dentist)
$290.00 Private Student Loan #1 extra
$250.00 "spending"

My private student loan payment was actually $421.82, the extra breaks down as follows:

$290.00 planned payment (from 3/31 paychecks)
$81.82 savings (previously itemized)
$50.00 credit card cash back check

balance on Private Student Loan 1: $819.14!! (down $836.05 in March!)

I'm on track to pay off this loan in May, but things might get a bit tight. My Short-Term Savings (above) are earmarked for a dental bill (which is about $30 more than planned) and our trip in June. Depending on plane ticket prices, I may have to pull some planned debt payments. We'll see how that goes.


left in budget 'til 4/13


to be used 4/14 for student loan payment

The weekend is over . . .

March 27th, 2006 at 08:31 pm

We had a nice weekend. My boyfriend and I went out to dinner on Saturday (a rarity lately), and in general relaxed this weekend. He's travelling for work all this week, so I decided it's time for a bit of spring cleaning.

My boyfriend and I have different ideas of what "clean" is. In general, he's kind of a messy guy, but will do his share of housework. He just decides things are in need of cleaning waaaay after I think it has to be done. The studio he lived in before we moved in together was just crazy. I think I mopped the floors more than he did . . . and he lived there for four years before I met him. Crazy stuff . . .

Anyway, I figure since he's out of the house, I'll do a real spring cleaning this year.

Spending has been okay, still underbudget. I need to make a small grocery shopping trip, and have to bring some type of appetizer to a work function on Friday. Other than that, no planned spending until payday on Friday.


Sat, 3/25:
$3.99 coffee
$26.95 dinner out

Sun, 3/26:
no spending

Mon, 3/27:
$4.00 coffee
$15.00 cigarettes

$50.31 left in budget 'til 3/30

A sunny weekend!

March 25th, 2006 at 02:53 pm

It's actually sunny here! We'll see how long it lasts, but right now I'm starting to form grand plans for yard work. My boyfriend and I moved into a rental house a little over a year ago. You can tell at somepoint someone cared about the yard, there's tons of terraces and great plants, but right now it's overgrown. We made a dent last year, but hope to get it into good shape this year. And it's finally getting nice enough! Yah!

Overall, things are doing well here financially. My last student loan payment went thru, I now have just $1237.41 on my first private loan! Very exciting. I'm right on track for paying it off in May.


Wed, 3/22:
$3.99 coffee
$2.00 soda
$2.00 groceries

Thurs, 3/23:
no spending

Fri, 3/24:
$15.00 cigarettes
$2.00 soda

$102.25 left in budget 'til 3/30


Fri, 3/24:
0.06 brick and mortar checking acct. interest

$81.82 to be used 3/31 for student loan payment


Back from the dentist . . .

March 21st, 2006 at 03:45 pm

Alright, back from the dentist, but before I tackle last night's dishes I wanted to post my spending update. It's not very pretty, but my savings is going well. Go figure Smile

The good news is, even with all my spending lately I'm still doing well percentage wise (percentages don't add up to 100% because the month is not over):

Must Haves (goal 50%)
~ Actual: 47.2%

Save (goal 30%)
~ Actual: 29.9%

Wants (goal 20%)
~ Actual: 14.2%

So overall things are going well this month. I just need to get back motivated about the little things that can add up.


Fri, 3/17:
$14.00 cigarettes
$3.99 coffee
$9.00 lunch
$16.62 groceries

Sat, 3/18:
$3.99 coffee
$15.00 lunch with friends

Sun, 3/19:
no spending

Mon, 3/20:
$3.99 coffee
$17.17 drug store (hair products, snacks)
$2.98 coffee
$12.26 groceries

Tues, 3/21:
$15.00 cigarettes
$2.00 snacks

$127.24 left in budget 'til 3/30


($25 ING new account bonus received, unused)

Mon, 3/20:
$0.39 drug store sale savings
$6.37 grocery store sale savings
$50.00 HSBC new account bonus

$81.76 to be used 3/31 for student loan payment

Crazy spending . . .

March 21st, 2006 at 09:32 am

Sometimes I do this to myself, I just got paid so I feel like I have money. I bought lunch and coffee the last few days at work and it just adds up. I'm down to $142.24 (from $250) in my spending budget. This is supposed to last until 3/30! I'm sure I can make it last, but still.

Last night after work I knew I had to go grocery shopping. I don't own a car, and I take the bus to work. I have two options for grocery stores in my neighborhood that are within walking distance of my bus line and my home.

One store is closer, but doesn't really have good prices for everyday foods. They do have a great produce section, and good prices for fresh items (fish, produce etc).

The other store is farther away, but tends to be cheaper. It's about 6 extra blocks, which doesn't seem that far, but when you're lugging a gallon of milk and groceries it can seem like miles Wink

I generally decide which store to go to based I what I need, and I knew I was stocking up on basics like milk that would be cheaper at the store that was further away.

Well, I actually motivated myself to go to the store farther away, despite being tired and just wanting to veg at home. Turns out everything I had planned to buy was on sale! Yeah! I ended up saving $6.37 on a $12.26 bill. I guess that sort of makes up for spending to much on coffee and whatnot. I'll just have to watch spending the next week or so.

I'll update with specific spending amounts later. I have today off, but have to head to the dentist for a cleaning Smile

New payperiod . . .

March 19th, 2006 at 04:02 pm

I got paid on friday. My check was a bit higher than usual because of overtime. I split my extra overtime between short-term save (earmarked for dentist bills and an upcoming vacation in June) and paying off my student loan.

Here's the break down:

$42.46 'savings'
+ $1.88 left over in previous budget
- $25.00 ING account opening bonus (pending, not received)

= $19.34 extra applied to debt

$840.62 paycheck (+$19.34 from above):

$262.50 1/2 of April rent
$57.63 regular gov. student loan payment
$194.49 extra private student loan (planned $160, $34.49 from extra savings and overtime)
$76.00 short-term save (planned $38, extra $38 from overtime)
$250 "spending" for next two weeks


I still have $25 pending from ING Direct. It has actually been deposited to my ING account (which is why I had added it to the totals for 'extra savings'), but it's not available to withdraw until 3/22.

Received ebookdrop payments :)

March 15th, 2006 at 08:45 pm

I just went to check my email after posting, and I received all 3 of my pending ebookdrop payments (via PayPal).

I'm thinking there must have been some kind of problem on their side, maybe with how many people were using them. I don't know, makes me kind of wary that it took me this long to receive payment when previously I got payment much more quickly. I think I may check and see if any other books are 'wanted' and maybe send one just to test.


$1.92 ebookdrop (1/26)
$3.52 ebookdrop (1/31)
$5.95 ebookdrop (1/31)

$42.46 to be used 3/17 for student loan payment

Still feeling sick

March 15th, 2006 at 08:29 pm

I'm still feeling a bit sick. I have a cough and just haven't really gotten over being sick last week. Mainly just tired.

I went grocery shopping last night, overall a success. Saved some money and stuck to the list Smile Well, I did splurge on one thing. I bought a big bag of roma tomatoes. I love tomatoes sliced with a bit of salt and pepper. For $2.39 I probably got about four servings. In fact, after typing this I'm going to go have a couple Smile


$39.82 groceries

$3.99 coffee

$2.88 left in budget 'til 3/16


$4.85 grocery store card and 1 coupon

$31.07 to be used 3/17 for student loan payment