<< Back to all Blogs
Login or Create your own free blog
Home > Archive: February, 2011

Archive for February, 2011

Debt as of March1st

February 28th, 2011 at 01:27 pm

So it's not the first until tomorrow, I just want to get this in. My plan is to update at the beginning of each month so I can track my progress. I estimated last month, so these numbers are correct.

Target: $24.40 paid
HSN: $39.00
PayPal Pay Later: $140.00
Merrick Bank: $465.31
Orchard Bank $443.40
Capital One: $1362.63
AT&T (last phone bill)$135.00

It is so little debt in the grand scheme of things, but it seems like it is taking forever to pay off!

Sam's Club

Sometimes it just doesn't seem worth it . . .

February 22nd, 2011 at 02:46 pm

To set the stage, I started a new job the last week of October and took a giant pay cut. On top of that, my first five bimonthly paychecks were prorated, and $400 less than they normally would be. I had some money in the bank (knowing I would be switching jobs), but barely enough to get through until my pay went back up. Of course, I had also planned on getting paid for the sick time and personal time that I had built up my first two years at my previous job (75% for personal/25% for sick), using that as a buffer. Apparently you have to give 90 days notice or you forfeit all that money. Okay. FU. It's worth it to get out of that horrible job that had me unable to sleep at night, wake up in the morning, go through lockdowns, and have my family constantly worry for my safety.

That left me super broke though.

I got a tutoring job. I sold books on half.com and classroom sets on ebay. I cut everywhere I could cut. We got in a screaming fight because I said we weren't going to make two damn trips to the Dollar Store in one day and waste gas. We turned the heat down and used only single lamps with high efficiency bulbs. Boiled water for pasta and then shut off the gas to let the pasta cook for 20 minutes with no heat. Spun clothes dry and hung them on a rack. Seriously. We did everything.

We had the most minimal Christmas you could think of. My parents paid our gas and tolls so we would go to their house. By January we were broke, but knew my income was going to go up by $800 that month.

On January 5th my car got towed because someone in Harrisburg screwed up. When we switched insurance, Hbg thought our insurance was canceled, and they sent us a notice to either send our plates or proof of insurance. We faxed in proof. We were actually covered by two different companies during the time they said we didn't have insurance. We got another notice saying our fax wasn't legible, send in copies. We did. We have copies of our fax receipt and the letters we sent with proof. We heard nothing else. Then our car gets towed nine months later.

We brought all our receipts/copies to traffic court so we could prove we had insurance and go get our car from the PPA. It was like a cross between Parking Wars and a Kafka novel. $600 later we had our car and another court date (3/8), and we were informed that we *might* get our money back if we had proof (we also have proof from the insurance company that they notified Hbg) of insurance for that time period. Oh, even if we proved we had insurance and Hbg was notified we wouldn't get back $75 of our money because it was an 'administrative' fee.

Okay. So we're flat broke now. Literally using change to buy milk, and rationing that out.

We start to climb out of the hole. With my Feb. 15th paycheck, I actually splurge and let us each have $15. We did have to get our car inspected, and knew there would be about a $130 repair. Okay. That sucks. But we had money for it -- amazing considering what's gone one. What happens? One side of the emergency brake is frozen, and if I want the car inspected it will be $398. So, again, I'm flat broke. My next paycheck on the 28th will cover rent and bills that are due before the 15th, leaving about $115 until I get paid on the 15th. Thankfully I'll have a small tutoring check and my husband's small check, but those don't add up to much. My check on the 15th will be used to start building up savings again, which I'm sure will disappear to another unforeseen disaster.

Sometimes it just gets so depressing to scrimp and save and go without just to have it all taken away.

Wachovia to Wells Fargo

February 21st, 2011 at 10:45 am

Since WF bought Wachovia, I thought I'd check on what was going to happen to my Wachovia Rewards account. I logged in and found that I had 5,229 points. After reading the faqs, I learned that WF will charge $12 per year to take part in the rewards program.

The first thing I did was use 5,200 pts to 'buy' $40 that will be credited to my checking account. Now I want to see how many points, on average, I would earn by paying bills with my card. I don't really use my card for anything else, since I'm one of those people who, if I don't have a cash envelope for a category (gas, groceries, etc.) I tend to spend more than I planned. The only thing I really use my card for is paying bills online, so I doubt it will end up being worth it.

Cell phones

February 20th, 2011 at 01:47 pm

My husband and I both have iPhones that we've had for years. I've been really annoyed at AT&T because my bill is about $130 per month.

I finally decided to break with my iPhone, which kills me, but I need to get this debt paid off so I can start saving money again.

I bought us each an LG Rumor Touch phone from Virgin Mobile, and signed up for the $25 plan. Unlimited text and web, and 300 minutes of talk time. That should be fine for us since we mostly text.

This will save us about $80 per month, so the phones will pay for themselves in about two months or so.

Again, it pains me to lose my iPhone, but I downloaded Opera Mini to the new phone, and I can deal with it for $80 per month savings.

Debt as of 2/20/11

February 20th, 2011 at 01:41 pm

Target: $24.40
HSN: $39.00
PayPal Pay Later: $170.00
Merrick Bank: $451.00
Orchard Bank $428.00
Capital One: $1326.00

I don't know what my student loan payment will be because I'm going to be on the Income Contingent Plan. I am going to begin an Ed.D. program, but my job pays tuition. YAY!! I should add that $3K per year to my income as I will use it every year.

Back Again!

February 20th, 2011 at 01:36 pm

I haven't posted since 2006, and I'm so surprised my blog is still here. I get a new job, moved to a new city, went back to school to get my Master's, and completely forgot the name of this site.

A few weeks ago I was searching for something else and this site came up! I was so excited! I had completely forgotten the few things I wrote about (at the time I actually canceled internet and used it only at work, so I stopped posting anything anywhere). I'm going to lay out my situation so that I have a record of where I am and what my plans are.

I left the job I moved here for, taking about a $15K paycut, which, believe it or not, was totally worth it not just for the piece of mind, but for the kick in the pants it gave me about money. I sort of went on a spending spree over the summer planning to go back to my awful job, but ended up switching jobs, taking a pay cut, and having too much debt.

Since no one knows who I am :-), I'm going to lay out where I am and where I want to be for my own records.

After massive pay cut, $48,500 salary. Hopefully I will get a generous raise next year. I get an extra $200 or so per month from tutoring, and my husband makes about$70/week at a weekend job (he homeschools our son during the week).

I am going to do a 'debt' and a 'budget' post so I don't have to wade through everything to see where I am.