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Thursday Already??

October 29th, 2015 at 07:37 am

This week has been flying. Had BNI this morning - and one of the members had a referral for me. So hopefully that works out! It's been a really great experience so far, and I'm happy I was able to gain something from being a member. Looking forward to seeing how it works out for me in Nashville.

Wrote the check to DH yesterday, so last year's tax debt is taken care of. Woo!! Now i just have to start saving a whole lot. I'm going to transfer $400 to my savings account today to get that process started.

I did a little thinking yesterday about my priorities. I really need to get on top of my businesses finances so I have a good estimate of what I'm going to owe come April. I have my account linked to my Quickbooks, so most of my expenses are getting accounted for automatically - but I'll be taking a few days in my down months to really hammer it out and make sure everything looks good.

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I'll be readjusting my goals and budget here in the next couple of days so that I'm fresh to start in November. Stay tuned!

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This is also day 4 of my new morning routine - which includes a 15+ min workout session. I've decided that on top of limiting my clothing/home purchases, I'm going to make working out for 7 days a stipulation. When I mentioned this to DH, he said, "I don't think that's a good idea." haha. I explained that my working out for a week doesn't mean I get to make EXTRA purchases, it just means I'm allowed to make the purchases I was already going to make - still within my budget and purposefully planned. I figure that gives me a week to carefully consider that purchase (no impulse buying) and simultaneously encourages me to work out. haha.

Honestly, having to bribe myself to workout for 15 minutes at a time is a bit sad to begin with, but I'll take whatever measures I can to put it into practice at this point.

Last night we did go out to dinner before a comedy show (and after all of that talk of doing well...). DH paid. I was thankful to have a night off. We need to include more meals that he can cook as well. I don't want to get completely burnt out.

Tonight is honey sesame chicken in the crock pot. Pinterest recipe that I'm excited to try out.

Hope you all have a fantastic day!!

Pampered Chef... anyone have any thoughts?

October 3rd, 2008 at 08:52 am

In lieu of the start to my job hunt, I've been going over my options. I thought about my interests and what kind of job I would want to do. I've sent resumes out for numerous administrative and secretarial positions. I'm just not sure if that's what I want to do or not. I dont have enough experience to find anything in the accounting feild, though I've sent resumes out for positions there too.

One option I came up with was being a Pampered Chef consultant. I love thier products, which means I would be willing to do sales, but there's a real entertaining aspect of it that I think I would really enjoy. Also, I think it would give me a good glimpse into what it's like to run my own business. I would have to do all of my own advertising, booking, planning, etc. I think it could be a really great experience, and I would be working on my own schedule.

Does anyone have any experience with Pampered Chef, or with any other home-party based businesses? What is the commission like? How much can you expect to make? I would really appreciate any feedback. Thanks!

Re-thinking what's important.

July 30th, 2008 at 07:03 pm

Wow. There are so many numbers I have to work with right now. It's rather overwhelming. I'm trying to figure my living expenses per month, with a rough estimate of income monthly, then determine how much I have to spend a month on tuition, how much I should ideally pay on my CC, how much I should be putting into an EF, and how much I should be saving per month to fund a trip to Kenya in May (as well as a plane ticket to see BF in Oaklahoma in March before he ships off to the sandy cities).

Phew.

I need to cut costs where I can. Here is my August challenge: No fast food. No buying food at work. No buying clothes, CD's, movies, or books for pleasure. No spending more than $20 for the entire month on eating at restaurants (which means one or two outings depending on the restaurant).

I've decided to go without, at least for August, internet service at the new apartment. I get internet at the library, at work, at my mom's, etc. BF has a wireless card on his work laptop, so whenever he is home, we have internet. Anywhere. So it seems kind of pointless to spend the money to get it just for convenience's sake. This is a big step for me. haha.

BF and I are going to sit down and decide how we want to handle our joint expenses. This will determine too what my monthly expenses will be.

I've set my trip to Kenya date to May of 2009. This gives me 8 months or so to save up money for the trip. I'm budgeting about $1600. Most of it will be for the plane ticket. I have an organization to stay with (for essentially free) once I get there. I think setting the date and coming up with a dollar amount to save every month will keep me focused. Besides, "Saving for my Kenya trip" sounds much more glamorous when deciding on a reason to not spend money on something else rather than "paying down my CC debt."

I'm trying to decide what I really want to do with my time and money and not get stuck in the "deprivation mode" that most financial fasts bring on. What is important to me? Spending time with my loved ones, my friends, my family, learning, going to school, travelling, and many other things. I'm trying to embrace my passions a little more rather than just getting bogged down with making money.

For instance, I'm trying to embrace my job a little more. Really do the best I can. That means helping with promotion and marketing for my restaurant, doing the best job I can while I'm there, really interacting with the customers and giving them the best experience they could have to make them come back. I want more responsibility so I can take pride in the things I do, rather than just being there to make money (though that obviously helps). Eventually, I hope the time and effort I put into helping the restaurant will lead me to have more business, then ultimately more money (and job satisfaction).

I'm embracing my love for cooking and entertaining to save money. Moving into the new place has really opened up options as far as entertainment and spending time with friends. I love to cook, and I love to cook for others. Even if I end up spending a little more on groceries, it will far outsmart the grotesque amounts of money I would ultimately end up spending at restaurants and bars. For instance, tomorrow night friends are coming over to eat, drink, and likely play board games. Everyone is bringing something (food or drinkstuffs). I have everything I need at home for my pleasant evening. No dollars will be moving out of this wallet, oh no!

As far as other entertainment goes, the library has been a godsent for me this past week. I've been doing so much financial reading and enjoying my season 3 disc 2 of Scrubs (that I need to finish watching because I need to return it tomorrow). Not to mention, all this life planning has been burning some serious hours.

I have, however, been enjoying the freed up time I've had due to not having internet at home Smile I realize that I have so many things around me I could do... play guitar, learn a foreign language, start exercising again... so many things that I could do for essentially free. Right now I'm doing laundry at mom's and working numbers instead of accepting the invite to go to the movies and see the new Batman. I have to say that I did want to see that movie, but the $8 is much better kept in my wallet.

One other thing, I've been trying to re-think the time I spend with my friends. Sure, going to the bar is a good time. But really, some of my best times were spent camping, or playing board games. We may have simultaneously been consuming beverages of the alcoholic persuasion, but they weren't upcharged 300%. And we could hear the conversation Smile

Well, that's enough rambling for one night. I'm gonna go watch some scrubs! Everyone have a great night.

Suze Orman, and some thoughts on her book.

July 25th, 2008 at 06:11 am

I do so love the library... yesterday I picked up 2 movies and a CD I had on hold, then I went and looked through the rather extensive personal finance section Smile

I always feel like such a nerd doing so much financial reading, but the books I picked up this time seem to be really good. I've never read any of Suze Orman's stuff, though it's talked about on SA rather religiously. I got her Financial Guidebook, and "The Money Book for the Young, Fabulous, and Broke." I also picked up a copy of "Conscious Spending for Couples," by Deborah Knuckey.

I started doing the guidebook yesterday, and I've gotten pretty far. By far, I mean to part 5. I've found in many of the Personal Finance books I've read that I feel that some of it doesn't apply to me. Especially in the case of wills, living trusts, things of that nature. Why draw up pricey documents when you really dont have anything?

I have no estate, no real property worth more than a few thousand, so I dont see the point. I do have a life insurance policy, which is a variable policy (kind of like a mutual fund). I dont know too much about it, except that if I let it sit for a long time, it has a pretty sizeable cash value, and I get stuff in the mail about it all the time that I dont really understand. lol. I pay my premiums 4 times a year, and that's that.

So I skipped the will/living trust/power of attorney for health insurance and all that. I know, I know. I could die at any time, but at this point, if I die, my mom can take care of things how she sees fit Smile and she can keep my clothes (you're welcome).

However, I did like the point in the book where it talks about earliest money memories, and fears, and all that. It's interesting to look at things from a psychological point of view. I definitely saw connections between some of my memories and my fears. And I came up with my "new truth." I even repeated it several times today, as the book told me to do.

The other thing that this book made me realize is that I kind of push off some of the things that are really important to me, like travelling. I've been wanting to get out of this country and see something more since I was 17, and have never had the money. So I'm making it a point to take a trip to Kenya in the next year. Come hell or high water. I'll save up the money, and take that trip. I'll do it when BF is away in the sandy cities. It'll give me something to look forward to. A trip like that is very important to me, just as important as paying off my CC. So whereas I wont charge the trip to my card, I will be saving an additional amount of money each month to go toward this trip. Perhaps I'll start using my extra income each month. That'll give me more incentive to make it Smile

In other financial news, I sold a book on amazon, which I plan on shipping here in about an hour. I need to stop at the bank on the way to work to make a deposit, as today we sign the lease, and I need that money in my account to give the woman the check for first months' rent/security deposit.

It's going to be a very busy day, as I work both the restuarant and the bar. So it'll be a late night as well. I need to get a move on, then. So much to do!

Everyone have a wonderful day!

Thursday check-in.

July 24th, 2008 at 05:48 am

Well, we sign the lease tomorrow. Then we start moving into our new apartment. Very exciting Smile

It's amazing to me just how busy I am this week. I've definitely been feeling it... I told the couple I work for yesterday that I was leaving them to work a better shift at my restaurant. They were very understanding, which made me feel much better about the decision. They did seem quite disappointed, however. They said that I'm a hard worker and do such a good job, and make excellent food Smile I told them to keep my number on hand in case they needed extra help, their new person needs to take a week off, etc.

So today is my last day with them. I'm going to miss it. It's only been a week, and I've never much cared for cleaning, but they are very nice people, and they were incredibly nice to work for. I start my new schedule at work next week. So let's hope I make the big bucks.

Went to mom's and did laundry last night. That saved me about $5.

I sold a book on amazon last night, so that'll be somewhere around $22 after shipping costs. I need to take that to the post office. I also need to go to the library, as I have a couple movies and a CD waiting for me there.

I'll be packing my lunch again today. If I keep it up through tomorrow, that would be 2 whole weeks that I've gone without spending money at work. Which means I've saved about $22.50. I want to keep it up through the rest of the month.

I cant believe how fast July has gone by. I need to apply to the university by August 1, so I need to get on that. I also need to pay my tuition ASAP. I cant register for classes in the fall til I pay the balance off. That could be problematic in that I have to pay this safety deposit and first months' rent... but we'll see. It'll be tough, but I want to go back to school in the fall, even if it's just part time.

I looked back at some of my entries in April and found the challenge I forgot about... I said I didn't want to buy any books for pleasure, movies, or CD's for 3 months. If I get through July, I'll reach this goal. Exciting Smile Thank you public library! haha.

I should probably get this day rolling. My slump passed once I got to work, I've just been really tired. It will likely continue through today as I got to bed late (up doing laundry til 12:30). I'm going to have to get used to these longer hours. Next week will be a little less stressful, however. I dont have to leave one job to go to the next. That kind of messes things up a bit. I always feel rushed.

Either way, everyone have a great day!

Midweek Slump?

July 23rd, 2008 at 05:39 am

It's only wednesday and I'm getting tired already... this busy schedule is something I'm going to need to get used to.

I've thought the whole job situation through some more, and come to the decision that I will take the job my boss offered me. It would pay more overall and cut out travel time during the day. I will be finishing the week out, however.

Yesterday was a no-spend day. I brought my lunch to work, and was gone all day, so there's no way I could have bought anything. I did, however, make a total of $76 yesterday between both jobs. That's about half of what I've been making in a total week lately... Not bad. Hopefully it'll be the same today. I'm definitely taking my lunch with me, dont have any plans for tonight. I'll probably just relax. I'm going to need to. BF and I have both been pretty exhausted this week overall.

Went to BF's nephew's birthday cookout after work. BF came home early and didn't tell me. It was a nice surpise Smile BF's sister also sent us home with the rest of the fruit salad, half a watermelon, and 7 or so cans of diet mt. dew. That was pretty sweet. I love fruit Smile

We're signing the lease on friday. I need to have about $1150 in my account by then so we can write a check. I'm working on that now. I'm transferring all the money in my savings except $50 to my checking account. That'll be the start of my emergency fund. BF needs to get me some cash. But he may just end up paying me back his part of it. I need to go to the bank today and make a deposit.

We get the keys then on friday. We're going to start moving then, though I wont be doing any moving until saturday, as I work all day friday. We'll continue moving on sunday. So I anticipate it being a rather inexpensive weekend, save maybe gas.

Well, I need to get this day started. I hope everyone has a good one!

The Third Job... It's going to be a busy week...

July 21st, 2008 at 06:04 am

Well, it's going to be a VERY busy week. I responded to a craigslist ad on friday for an "Alice" position. Alice as in the woman who took care of the Brady Family. As it seems, this couple needs someone to clean for them and make them dinner (almost) every night. They have no kids, only 2 dogs. I met with them on saturday morning, and I am absolutely excited about this job. It's going to be hard work. They have a fairly large house. But I really like these people, and I'm incredibly excited to get paid for cooking.

I start today after my shift at the restaurant. They're paying me $10/hr to start with, until we see how the hours work out. They'll probably bump me up if I end up working less than 20 hours/week. I'm just trying to be affordable. They both have good jobs, but they are certainly not rich.

So, that being said, I now have 3 jobs. 3 JOBS! wow... This may be my last week at the restaurant, I'm not sure. I'm still waiting to hear back from the bank. If I get the teller position, I'll be leaving the restaurant for sure. I'm going to give the HR woman a call this afternoon if I dont hear back. I really hope I get this job.

So here's what my schedule looks like: Restaurant Monday-friday from 10:30-2:00ish, then Mon-Thurs I do my "Alice" job from 3:00-whenever (we're playing it by ear this week), and then I work at the bar Friday and saturday at 5:30-whenever.

Saturday we start moving.

By sunday night I think I'm going to just collapse and never wake up. lol. It's a lot. I know it's a lot. But the more I work, the more money I make, and the better chances I can get these summer classes paid off and I can register and take classes in the fall.

I'm trying to take a can-do attitude. BF works 15, 16 hour days sometimes and he manages it. I can do this. it's really not all that bad. Work hard, and pay off the classes, the debt.

So it's monday of this hellish week, and my attitude is going to remain positive.

I did 2 surveys this morning, a pinecone survey and a lightspeed panel survey. So I should have a check coming soon. woo!

Well guys, wish me luck! I need to get this week started!

Back from the Beach... starting may for real...

May 5th, 2008 at 09:19 am

Well, the beach was great! I have a crazy splotchy sunburn that makes me look like a disease, but other than that I arrive back in ohio unscathed. I just need to learn to apply sunscreen evenly Smile

Vacation was low-cost and definitely awesome. We laid out in the sun, walked on the beach, ate chili-cheese dogs, and went out dancing. Overall, a wonderful weekend. We did decide to come back a day early... as I was sunburnt and lacking energy, and mom wanted to get back as well.

But now I'm back and in the real world again Smile At the beach I finished the 2 books that I had checked out from the library, and mom is actually reading one of them now. I'm trying to help her out, give her some ideas to get her finances together. I'm even going to show her SA here in a bit!

I'm trying to find ways to pull in a little extra cash. I'm going to list anything I have that I dont need on amazon or ebay.

I was trying to think of hobbies that I can use to make money, and I think I'm going to start crocheting a bit more. I need to get a little better, but there's no reason why I cant have fun and get better at it, then maybe start an etsy shop like our other friend here on SA. I was looking at the events at the library, and at one of the local branches there's a knitting/crocheting group that meets once a week. I'm thinking of going. Could be really fun to meet some new people. Also, my grandma just gave me a huge box of crocheting stuff... yarn, needles, books. I still have to go look through it (it's at mom's), but I'm sure there's some stuff in there I can use.

Aside from that, I think pursuing music again would be a good idea. I'd love to join a band or start playing music solo again. I'll have a lot more time this summer and especially in the fall and spring.

I took a look at the expenses I pay on a regular basis, and what my problem areas are. And I've decided to start a challenge for myself. I want to go 3 months without buying any books, movies, or CD's for myself. Books are something that I spend a lot of money on. Much more than I should, and it's silly to buy them when the library has so many. So that's the challenge. I think I can cut down on at least $60 that way in the next 3 months.

I start work this week (tomorrow actually), so we'll see how things go! I'm pretty excited to start. I love starting new jobs. Hopefully I'll pull in a lot of money!

As for today? BF is at work until the evening. Then we're going to unpack and clean the apt. I'm sure we'll cook dinner. So it should be a NSD. I was thinking about running down to the library and I still have to go to the post office to put in my change of address form, which I unfortunately forgot when I went to mail that book I sold. ugh.

Well, I should probably get my day started!