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Archive for August, 2016

I Didn't Plan Very Well

August 30th, 2016 at 08:45 am

Yesterday:
Breakfast: Overnight Oats and coffee
Mid-morning (I might as well call this 2nd breakfast): breakfast burrito
Lunch: Greek salad and apple
Dinner: Taco salad
Extra food: none
Personal training at the gym: 30 min cardio warm up on treadmill and bike and full body workout with personal trainer.

My car is running low on gas. I put in the 20 that my dad gave me on Friday when I took him to the doctor. The fuel lasted nearly five days at just over half a tank. I am also running a low on funds because I paid more on CC1 than usual and that brought my remaining spending money way down. I have no idea what I was thinking so my ‘no spending’ willpower will need to take over until next payday which isn’t until September 9th.

Anyway, I asked my DH for a loan from his side gig slush money for gas until payday. I needed enough for this week and next week. With the loan I picked up some things at the grocery store: eggs (75 cents per dozen mediums!), bread (BOGO), bananas, and water (we are under tropical storm watch). I put the change in my change jar and updated my sidebar (dresser).


Day 7 - One Week of Blogging

August 30th, 2016 at 03:32 am

Boring Entry...
Yesterday:
Breakfast: Overnight Oats and coffee and 4 oz of Goodbelly
(www.goodbelly.com)
Mid-morning: omelet and 1 slice of toast
Lunch: Greek salad and apple
Dinner: Beef stew, white rice, fried plantains, crackers, small slice of cake and ic cream for dessert.
Extra food: 1 brownie from training at work

DH pays these:
8/29/16 Mobile phone (family plan) = 222.34
9/1/16 Mortgage = 805.44
9/19/16 Auto insurance (two vehicles semi-annual) = 881.14

I paid:
8/26/16
CC1 = 211
Electric/Water = 100
Student Loan = 90

My investments as of 8/29/16:
401k Fidelity = 22,147.03
Roth Sharebuilder = 721.82
IRA Sharebuilder = 19,541.74
Sharebuilder Investment Account = 217.83

Day 6 Change Jar Stash

August 28th, 2016 at 05:11 pm

Yesterday:
Raided the change jar for a pack of tortillas (for taco salads later in the week) = 1.29
Tithe at church
Breakfast: cereal w/milk, banana
Lunch: Overnight oats and peach tea
Dinner: Turkey/Veggie Casserole leftovers.
Snack: Ice cream sandwich
Extra food: none

I have several change jars. My husband has one for his spending on his dresser. He uses a beer growler. In July, we emptied his growler and counted out the change. The total was surprising…Nearly $200! He deposited in savings. I have a small jar and I separate the silver change from the pennies. We also keep a piggy bank in the laundry room and whatever change we find, we put it in the bank. I also have an Altoids tin that I keep in the car and sometimes change I find I put in there. I recently gave a homeless person my entire Altoids tin containing change (I think I had about 3.00). I like keeping those tins with change in them in case I can help someone. Finally I have a small jar that I keep at the office. I rarely carry cash but when I do, I sometimes buy lunch and deposit the change in my small jar. The amount on my side bar is from my dresser. I will take some time to count what I have in the laundry room and at the office and make a combined total. I would consolidate but for some reason, I find comfort in having a little stash of pocket change near me.

I forgot to mention about side gig from Friday. I have a hurt foot and my side gig requires I climb a ladder to check smoke detectors. I wasn’t confident in doing that with my foot so I asked DS1 take over the inspection and I will drive. We agreed to split it 35/15 in his favor since he completed the entire inspection and I just drove. So my earnings were 15.00 instead of 50 but that’s ok. In a future post I will tell you about my side business since it is a long story.

Day 5 How I Use Capital One 360

August 27th, 2016 at 07:29 pm

I briefly mentioned in a previous post that I have savings in Capital One 360 for the days I am out on FMLA (family medical leave act) to take my dad to the doctors. I recently began this fund to supplement the wages lost on the days I am away from work. FMLA is supposed to protect you from job loss due to being away from work for many absences due to medical situation or caregiver duties.

Anyway, opened my first account when they were ING Direct and they had an amazing interest rate. The interest rate is now abysmal but I use it like an envelope system for expenditures that are not in the normal budget. Like an escrow account like CCF uses.

Here are my escrow savings accounts with Capital One 360 (deposits every other week on paydays):
Healthcare FMLA days, 20.00 (I just opened this)
Christmas Club, 10.00 (I hope to supplement with gift cards I earn from apps. I may try surveys if I have the time)
DS3’s school expenses, 5.00 (He is a junior in high school. Saving for his senior year and all that entails).
Clothes Makeup and Hair, 5.00 (this is for me)
Travel 2.00 (low priority but I may have enough for travel in September)
Lunch Going Out, 2.00 (setting aside funds to have lunch somewhere)
Sharebuilder 1.00 (investment accounts, IRA and Roth)
CCW Dues n Cards, 1.00 (I’m in a ‘Church Lady’ group. This is already fully funded for 2017)
Gym annual fee 39.99 x4, 7.00 (Even though I knew about it, it still took me by surprise last year. I’m prepared now).
I don’t know why I haven’t opened one for auto insurance. I will need to do that soon. We taught DS1 well because he escrows his auto insurance. Proud of him!

Yesterday:
DH working overtime.
Spent 3.75 on a box of ice cream sandwiches.
Counted the change in my change jar = 6.07
Breakfast: 2 slices of French toast, 1/2 banana, coffee
Lunch: half a sausage and some cheese
Dinner: Turkey/Veggie Casserole (My first attempt. Needs some improvement), red wine.
Snack: 2 oz. of hard cheese
Extra food: Ice cream sandwich (dessert)

I think I will start a NSD ticker for the month of September and display on the sidebar. My goal is to have 15 NSDs in September (half the month).

Day 4

August 26th, 2016 at 07:06 pm

I'm getting the hang of this!

Work drama (update): Well it was much worse than we thought. DH’s company says they overpaid him by 395.18! Apparently the company accidentally had him (and other employees) receiving a benefit that he did not rate. That’s no good. I imagine they will deduct a percentage each paycheck until it is paid in full. That means they would deduct about 40.00 per paycheck. That’s crap!

I took my dad to see an orthopedist for his knee. The doctor diagnosed what my dad suspected all along: arthritis and gout. He has gout flare ups which are incredibly painful. The doctor’s assistant took some fluid from his knee to send to the lab and then gave him a cortisone shot. Hopefully this will make him more comfortable and steady. The doctor also prescribed medicine for his gout. My dad is very happy with this doctor and feels he can trust him. He hasn’t trusted the other doctors we have been to lately. My dad gave me 20.00 toward gas.

Yesterday:
Groceries estimated 125. Actual 154.52
Gas estimated 35. Actual 20 (filled 3/4 tank)
Lunch at Burger King (treated DS1 & DS2) 16.04
Snowflakes: 20 from my Dad for gas (for taking him to the doctor)
Earlier in the month: 5.00 from lottery scratch ticket my mom gave me, 15.00 copay overpayment refund, 16.69 dividend from profit share from my first employer.

I do this for the benefit of my diet.
Breakfast: Pancakes (www.kodiakcakes.com) & coffee
Lunch: Whopper, fries, Coke Zero
Dinner: Lasagna, sweet plantains, salad
Extra food: 1/4 portion of a veggie calzone and 3 glasses of wine (neighbors came over to hang out). We already had the wine. They bought the beer and the calzones.

Personal Training workout on Thursday 8/25: arms

Dinner menu plan for next week:
Saturday: Turkey/Veggie casserole
Sunday: DS2 & DS3 are involved in Church Youth and they have dinner there. DS1 works the evening shift at a grocery store so Sunday’s meals are very simple.
Monday: Eat at Mom’s
Tuesday: Taco salads
Wednesday: Brown dinner (Salisbury steak with onions, gravy and mashed potatoes)
Thursday: Chicken pot pie
Friday: Eat at Mom’s

Day 3

August 26th, 2016 at 04:29 am

Today is payday. I have two main checking accounts that I set up some time ago for different reasons.
8/26 Paycheck:
1/2 payment for CC1 and CC2
1/2 power bill
1/2 student loan bill
savings deposit
tithing monthly
security alarm service
mortgage (transfer from DH’s account)

There is drama. My DH’s job has made a mistake with the majority of the employees’ paychecks who have worked overtime. The errors are as low as a penny or two per hour to up to a dime per hour. Now they are auditing everyone’s paychecks a year back and are demanding their money back. So DH spends about two hours yesterday, on his own time ( I think this should have been on company time since the snafu was theirs) printing out his pay stubs and going through the OT rates. He did find errors on some which amounted to less than $50.00. A huge relieve because we were afraid it would run into the hundreds. The company was recently sold and the changeover will be completed by December so they are scrambling to audit their accounts. Very sloppy. I hope this new company is better.

I have the day off from work today to take my dad to see a new doctor, an orthopedist for his knee issues. I use Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) to take my dad to his doctor appointments. I elected the “intermittent leave” FMLA because I only need time off to drive him to the doctors. If you didn’t know that and were considering using FMLA to help a family member, this is available. My mom doesn’t drive and he has some mild mobility issues (reason for his medical appointments) and also a language barrier. He has been living in the U.S. since 1962 and though he understands enough English, his pronunciation is limited and his understanding of what he is told in English can be misunderstood. So I’m the interpreter.

FMLA days are without pay so I started a savings account with Capital One 360 recently to fund my days off. For take home pay, that is about $80 per day. So I am trying to build up that account to make up for time lost.

Yesterday 8/25:
Helped my uncle with his new answering machine
$50 loan to DS2 for college textbook (unplanned spending)
Personal training at the gym
Breakfast: overnight oats, coffee, omelet on toast
Unplanned snack: a slice of cake someone brought in at work
Lunch: chicken tenders, mac n cheese
Snack: Greek yogurt with strawberries
Dinner: shepherd’s pie
I need to control my eating as well as my spending!

To do today:
Meal plan
Laundry
Side gig (earn 50)
Dinner at Mom’s (My mother cooks dinner for us on Mondays and Fridays-HUGE blessing!)

Variable spending for today (estimates):
Groceries - 125
Buy gas – 35 (gas buddy priced the lowest at 1.88/gal)



Day 2

August 25th, 2016 at 05:49 am

I just spent a good 30 minutes on this post and when I published it, it was gone. Now I'm trying to remember what I said because it was long.

Here is what I can remember:

Thank you to everyone for the warm welcome. I am looking forward to sharing my financial journey with you. I want to give a shout-out to the following bloggers who have inspired me:

CB in the City - My future self...I can see my retirement looking bright!
VS-from-Oz - I am on the same journey as you.
Scottish_girl - My younger self...I've been there and I can relate. Hang in there SG because it gets better!
Creditcardfree - What I'm striving for now.

I said more in my previous post but I want to say that these bloggers were my inspiration to begin my own blog.

Let's talk about my money and where it goes. I am currently gathering up to date figures for my debt balances.

CC1 is old debt that was from consolidating other debts. The APR is 9.90%. I pay half a payment each payday (every other Friday).

CC2 is newer debt. I began this card to use for gas for my side biz. Did well too. Then other expenses here and there (bad choices) plus my personal training fees go on this card. The APR is variable and currently sits at just over 15%. I also pay half a payment each payday.

Student Loan from when I graduated in 2006. This is consolidated and the APR is 2.8%. I also pay half a payment each payday.

Mortgage. My husband pays this but he transfers from his checking to my checking. I pay this in full when due.

Obligatory expenses: Groceries, electric and water (one bill), cell phone, internet, security alarm service, gym memberships, tithing, clothing and miscellaneous.

We cut out cable TV years ago. We feel that cable is a rip-off. We also recently decided that going to the movies is also a rip-off. We check out DVDs from the library and if we like a movie enough to watch over and over, we will buy it but wait for it to reach rock bottom prices usually at Big Lots for 5.00.

Income sources:
Day job and side jobs (I have one side job. My husband has multiple side gigs).
Bing Rewards
Ibotta app
Receipt Hog app
Target gift card rewards (for certain purchases)

Yesterday:
No spend day!
My side gig earnings 50.00
Breakfast: overnight oats, coffee
Lunch: cheese omelet on toast, greek yogurt with strawberries
Snack: apple
Snack before side gig: hot dog (from home)
Dinner: chicken tenders, mac n cheese, wine









Day 1

August 24th, 2016 at 10:14 am

I decided earlier this year to split my monthly expenses on each pay check so that I have a little breathing room on each check (money to spare). It gets to where it is tough to pay all from one check and be basically broke for two weeks and so far, this system has worked out well for me.

For 2016, I have 10 more paydays for my regular job. I also have a side business that is not steady but reliable, meaning, that I can count on having assignments each month from my business, but some months have more activity than other months.

I know that I can do better on my savings and debt reduction and as I blog my thoughts, I know that I can come up with a plan to get ahead!