<< Back to all Blogs
Login or Create your own free blog
Layout:
Home > Archive: March, 2005
 

Archive for March, 2005

car shopping sucks

March 31st, 2005 at 12:14 pm

I have no idea how people afford new cars. According to bankrate.com, I can't even afford a $10,000 loan for three years, unless I ratchet it up to a 5 year loan, which I don't want to do. I am not hurting for a car (yet) but my commute is long and my car is 11 years old, and has many miles on it for a Ford. I am really afraid it is going to blow up one of these days and that will be that. I cannot find a trustworthy mechanic in this city either ($660 for a water pump? I don't think so). I'd like to give it to my sister, who has access to a decent mechanic and does not have a car yet. However. I'm not going to spend three years paying on a car when at the end of those three years it will have just as many miles on it as my current car does. This is a such a pain. What I really need is a new job that pays me a decent wage, so I can afford to buy a car that has less than 70,000 miles on it.

Yesterday I spent $6. Today I spent $4. Last night's kickboxing was really fun and a good workout. I was exhausted by the end. I really needed that.

I read a bit on that 'Money Millionaire In The Making' site, and it just made me irritated. There was a couple on there who are 25 and 27 and are making $108,000 a year. If they each make half of that salary, they are still each making $20,000 more a year than I am, and I am the same age as them with the same credentials!!! It made me feel like my college education was completely worthless. What really gets me irritated is the fact that I will be paying off my college loans for the next six years, and my loans are what are preventing me from buying a decent car or buying a home. God forbid I have a child, because there is no way on earth I could afford it.

By the way, my sincere thanks to whoever gave my journal five stars yesterday. It made my day. Smile

if it's raining, it must be spring!

March 30th, 2005 at 07:22 am

Lots of rain today. I am pretty happy about that. It means spring is here!

Yesterday I spent $6.65 on a diet coke with lime, buns for lunches, and easter candy on sale for half off.

Tonight is kickboxing night! whoo hoo! I'll be buying dinner out; hopefully it will be inexpensive. I've been feeling like a sloth lately, so I'm looking forward to working out. Must remember to concentrate on form and not get irritated with the instructor.

I really need a hair cut, but I keep putting it off because of the price and the fact that I like being able to put my hair in a ponytail again. I've budgeted it for April, though.

I also would like to buy rock climbing shoes so I can stop paying to rent them...but I just don't have the funds to do it if I want to pay off my credit card. That's why I budget cash withdrawals every month, right? So I can rent shoes and buy dinner out on kickboxing nights. *sigh*

apartment hunting

March 29th, 2005 at 08:16 am

I am thinking about moving to a new place with my boyfriend. We'll see. I am very concerned that my landlord is going to rachet up my rent another $50 this year, and my budget is already bursting at the seams. If I moved to a new place with my BF, we could split the rent and utilities and maybe I could save enough money to move out of MN next spring. I found the most adorable place last night on craigslist.com...lots of hardwood floors, neat woodwork, and in an old victorian home. I'd really like to go look at it. I'm still a little torn about moving in with him, because part of me keeps thinking, "if I'm going to move in with him why don't I just marry him," but I'm not ready to take the marriage leap yet.

el fin de semana

March 28th, 2005 at 11:49 am

Thursday: I did two loads of laundry and went out to dinner with my sweetie. He treated me. Pretty good chile rellenos!

Friday: Went to Walmart ($53). Picked up my sister, bought lunch for us ($8), paid for parking ($1), and took her and my sweetie out to dinner ($23).

Saturday: Went to the grocery store ($57). Then I took my sister rock climbing ($24). She loved it! We had a great time. We had lunch at home, then went to my sweetie's parents' house for the rest of the weekend.

Sunday: $0. Lots of driving.

Monday: $26 to fill up my gas tank. ish.

I have no more planned expenses for this month. I've spent 119% of my income in March (with savings and retirement).

Collectively, my BF and I spent $207 on groceries (OUCH!), I've spent $112 on gasoline (DOUBLE OUCH!), and $147 at Walmart/Target (WHAT?!).

*sigh*

I had a nice weekend, though. Smile

Total Spent Thursday through Monday: $192

W2 change...

March 24th, 2005 at 09:56 am

I changed my W2 so I'll get a refund rather than having to pay next year....and it's dropping my check down $11 every pay period. Frown *sigh*

clothes $$

March 24th, 2005 at 09:26 am

I think I need to actually set aside a budgeted amount for clothing. That might help my enternal closet struggle. Yesterday I bought a pair of summer pants and two tank tops, about $33. I definitely want to do more shopping....but I did pretty bad on my food intake (calorie-wise) yesterday, so that isn't helping me lose weight and feel better about my body.

In preparation for payday, I wrote out checks for three bills and made an entry in my checkbook for my savings account - pay myself first! Wink I'm slowly starting to get that concept. Don't know what my problem is, it is a fairly simple concept, but not one I grew up with so it's hard to internalize.

I think I'll end up spending more this weekend than I'd like to. I'll have to buy groceries for my sister, I'm sure, because dorm life and no car means way too much cafeteria food than she'd like. Plus I am a nice big sister. I want to take her out to an awesome vietnamese restaurant, too, so that will be some $$. Oh well. She doesn't visit me often. I've spent a lot of money on frivolous things this month, but this doesn't count as one of them.

According to my budget, I've spent 110% of my income this month; 116% if you count savings. Ouch! Next month I'm shooting for 99% with savings.

I filled out my rental return, and I'm going to get a really nice return this year! It almost makes up for my exorbitant rent. but not quite.

I got a card in the mail yesterday about condo living, starting at $99K. I forgot to bring it today so I could look up the website. I really need to make some big decisions regarding my relationship (should we move in together? should we get married?), my job (should I move somewhere where I can actually find a job in the field I want?), and my living arrangement (is my landlord going to jack up my rent even more this year? can I stand this climate much longer?). UGH. I have no idea how to go about making these decisions, which is probably why I've been sitting in limbo for much too long.

hybrid heaven

March 23rd, 2005 at 08:26 am

I really wish I had a hybrid, or a TDI, or something like that that got excellent gas mileage. I spent $22 yesterday on a tank of gas, and that is ridiculous! My car is doing this weird revving engine thing again, and I am concerned. I've finally got some money into my savings, and I'd hate to have to yank it out again.

Sunday night: frozen pizza at home. no spending. lots of cleaning.

Monday: homemade soup for lunch, tacos for dinner at home. no spending.

Tuesday: leftover pizza for lunch, didn't eat dinner. bought gasoline, OUCH.

Today: peanut butter & jelly for lunch, not sure about dinner but it will be at home. I think I'm going to an outlet mall with a friend of mine this afternoon. I wasn't planning to buy clothes, but this morning was horrendous in that I wanted to through every item of clothing I own out the window. I just hate my closet. Part of it is bad body image, I know, but nothing seems to fit right. I wanted to lose 15 pounds before I went clothes shopping again, but hating my entire wardrobe nearly caused me to stay home from work today.

Thursday: I'm not planning to spend. Maybe I'll list my closet finds on eBay.

Friday-Sunday: My sister is coming to visit for the weekend. I'll have to run to the grocery store and take out some cash, and be prepared to spend a lot on gas money. I'd like to take her rock climbing, but I'm not sure if I'll have the money to do it. We may just end up doing free/cheap things. I have Friday off, thank god.

I'm chipping away at my credit card bill...slow and steady wins the race!

sneezy sunday

March 20th, 2005 at 04:09 pm

I spent six hours cleaning my place today. I took everything out of my main closet, trashed a bunch of it, organized the rest, and set aside a box for donation/eBay.

I've stayed in all weekend. Yesterday, Princess Perky inspired me to fire up my crock pot and make taco soup. I also made corn bread in the breadmaker, so a have a few more lunches in the freezer. Yay! Today I didn't eat much and made a frozen pizza for dinner. Nothing spent today, but a lot of useless stuff purged, and I feel better.

I make a point of never thinking about the week ahead until Monday morning....so I think I'll watch some tv! Big Grin

headache saturday

March 19th, 2005 at 08:30 am

I started to get a headache last night during our girl's night, and it's still here. luckily it is quiet and calm inside my apartment, and outside there is so much recent snow that it's muffling everything!

I spent about $56 last night, which was what I was expecting. It was pretty fun, but we did a lot of venting about a member of our group who has abandonded us for her boyfriend. That sucks, and we are really hurt by it, but there's not much you can do when someone is in "love". The problem I have with it is that that is the sort of thing girls did in junior high...not in their mid to late twenties.

I am fighting the urge to go shopping. I don't need anything, and I need to just keep reminding myself of that. I don't have enough in my bank account anyway. If I can keep myself out of the stores, it will be a no-spend weekend. I should really try to make an effort to have a no spend week up until payday next Friday!

ugh...I'm going to curl up on the couch.

drink more tea!

March 17th, 2005 at 08:30 am

I'm a little obsessed with hot tea lately. I don't like to drink coffee, and my office is perpetually freezing, so tea it is. I'm using a tea bag twice before tossing it...the second cup is much less flavorful, but enough to appease me.

Kickboxing rocked. It was challenging. I have a serious problem with authority in that I was getting very irritated with the instructor for bossing me around. I just kept trying to remind myself that she is trying to help me! It's hard for me though, because I hate, hate, hate being told what to do. I was a lovely child for my parents to deal with, as you can imagine. Wink

I spent $6.06 on dinner, and that was all. When I got home, I paid two bills that had come in the mail. My cell phone bill was a little bit higher because apparently I was roaming and didn't realize it, but it was only a couple of minutes, so oh well.

I was going to buy a six pack of beer for our girl's night tomorrow night, but with the rest of our planned activities, I think I need to cut back on expenses for the evening. I'm planning to bake cookies tonight instead. that will shave a little bit off of the evening's cost.

Today's lunch is what I was supposed to eat yesterday, food from home. Tonight's dinner will be at home. Tomorrow's lunch will be free for listening to someone speak about finances. whoo hooo!

I wish I still got lunch money

March 16th, 2005 at 12:02 pm

I just spent $11.51 on lunch for me and my beau. He bought me a green tea smoothie, though. Tonight I'll be buying dinner at a food court, and my kickboxing pass.

KICKBOXING!!!!! I am pumped. apparently there may be someone there who only speaks Spanish (how is he managing? I have no idea), so I may get the chance to practicar con el. no he hablado por anos, pero quisiera practicar con mas frequencia. si hay alguien que habla espanol aqui, me puede escribir!

sweetly skipping

March 15th, 2005 at 05:54 pm

I am not going to my obligation tonight. I am sick of it, and after the last few days, I don't need the aggravation.

Suffice to say that I spent the weekend with several people whom I love dearly and a few I don't. My weekend was definitely not my own, and I feel like I have been living at work. Today was full of people throwing more and more tasks on me, all the while treating me as though I am a five year old.

enough complaining. Wink the job search continues.

On Friday I put $50 into savings ($25 of that for holiday gifts), and paid three bills (including paying off one credit card). On Saturday I ate free breakfast at work, lunch at home, and had a free dinner. Sunday I had free breakfast and free dinner. I bought $19 worth of card making supplies at Michaels (sale!). Monday I paid $5 to rent climbing shoes at the gym, had a free breakfast and free lunch at work, and leftovers for dinner at home. Today I filled my gas tank, washed my car (all those shiny cars around were driving me nuts!), ate breakfast at home, had leftovers for lunch, and so far I haven't prepared dinner, but it will be something from the pantry/freezer. I'm going to pay another bill tonight and maybe put something into my IRA.

Tomorrow! I'll bring lunch and breakfast from home. I am kickboxing again tomorrow night, so I'll have to buy dinner out and my kickboxing card.

As for the rest of the week, all I'm sure about is Friday...it will probably be a moderate spending night, but I haven't seen my girlfriends for months, and we need a night out. Big Grin

more snow

March 11th, 2005 at 12:17 pm

fab-u-lous. it's been snowing all day. I can't possibly tell you how excited I am to have an extended, agonizingly slow drive home tonight.

I am so tired. I just want to nap. curling up with a cup of chocolate on the couch sounds better than anything right now.

the climbing was fun last night! my arms are sore and we didn't even do much. one of my college alumni was in the class too....go figure. I see former classmates everywhere. I guess that is one good reason to move out of state, but they are everywhere! I know this because I even ran into someone from a rival college on the top of Macchu Picchu. tell me, what are the chances of that. so I expect to recognize the whole climbing gym.

I paid off one of my college loans today! whooo hooo!! one down, two to go. I paid two other bills too. tonight I'm not spending any money. dinner in and maybe a movie in, and early sleep, because I have to work tomorrow. Frown

INVIGORATED!

March 9th, 2005 at 07:10 pm

Thank you, Nate, for making it so I can read my old posts as I type this one. You Rock.

I just got home from kickboxing. It was a workout, and it was really fun. I'll definitely be buying a membership punch card. I feel so good now!!! I kept saying to myself, why don't you move your body more often? This is actually fun! I just need to convince my procrastinator/perpetually tired side of that little fact.

Luckily I didn't have to pay for the punch card tonight, though, but probably next week. I spent $10 on dinner....not bad for a sit-down restaurant. That was all I spent today. Unfortunately that $10 also meant 745 calories...ouch. Carrot sticks for me tomorrow.

Tomorrow, lunch from home, then dinner at home, then climbing gym excursion. No money spent, with any luck.

getting in shape

March 8th, 2005 at 01:06 pm

I scheduled two workout sessions for this week: one for tomorrow night with a friend, and one on Thursday with my boyfriend at the climbing gym. I feel so fat, it is driving me nuts. All I want is my clothes to fit again...and to lose 35 pounds (hehe).

Yesterday I did not spend anything. My bf picked up wine for dinner. We made lasagna and it turned out great!

Today I am paying back a friend for picking up April concert tickets ($25). I also reserved our spots for the climbing gym class on Thursday ($40).

Tomorrow I'll need to pay for a punch card to work out with my friend ($50). I'll also probably need to buy dinner, because the class is at a time and place that makes it inconvenient to drive home and get dinner. Hopefully we'll pick somewhere cheap to eat.

Thursday should be a no-spend day! (hopefully)

I'm trying to figure out what to do...do I find a bigger place and move in with my bf here? Do I stay in my place alone, and risk the rent rising drastically like it did last year? If we stay here, should a new place be closer to my workplace, instead of such a long commute? Do I really think I can keep working here much longer? If not, since I can't find a job here, should I move? Where should I move to? Do I risk moving somewhere without a job? *sigh*

migraines

March 7th, 2005 at 09:00 am

Saturday afternoon turned out to be a bust. I started getting a rapidly developing migraine and it was downhill from there. I didn't get much accomplished.

Sunday I woke up with a dull ache, but it felt like it was off in the distance, so I thought maybe I could keep it at bay. I did four loads of laundry over the course of the day, made cinnamon pecan bread, and cleaned up the kitchen. I went to Target and a couple of sporting goods stores in the afternoon. I spent $58 at Target, $28 more than I intended to, but I had coupons and stocked up on a few things. I didn't spend anything at the sporting goods stores. I went to the grocery store too, but my BF picked up the tab there - another $60, so that brings March's total thus far up to $135. We are trying to eat healthier things, and less prepackaged stuff. We even planned the week's meals when we got home...hopefully we can stick to it. My headache came back in the midst of all this, and I was in bed by 8:00pm.

Today the headache is in its same dull state.

I applied to several jobs yesterday, all over the country. We'll see.

Today will most likely be a no spend day, since my headache is creeping back in and I am tired of shopping for the moment. Plus, we are well stocked in groceries, and tonight is lasagna night!

Super Saturday!

March 5th, 2005 at 10:56 am

I am on a roll today! I:
- prepared potato empanada filling for dinner tonight -- it's better if it sits in the fridge for a bit to meld flavors

- baked chewy granola bars for weekday breakfasts -- I added some pecans and dried cranberries

- did the dishes
- swept the floors
- straighted the food shelves & tossed what was bad
- changed the water and the filter in the fish tank, and scrubbed away algae
- made yogurt
- straightened the living room

and last night I made pebre to go with the empanadas. it's best when it's had time to meld flavors, too.

I ate leftovers for lunch. now I am going to shower, and then tackle either the laundry or my den.

whooooo hoooooo!

weekend can't come fast enough

March 4th, 2005 at 07:32 am

I didn't spend any money yesterday, but I should pay my boyfriend back for some food he bought and gasoline.

Tonight I will probably drop as soon as I walk in the door. This weekend I am cleaning my house from top to bottom, doing my laundry, and making some things for lunches. It's so nice not to have plans set up whatsoever...the next three weekends are not so kind.

I think I'm going to have to move to get a job in the field I want. NYC and LA really do not appeal to me, but if the alternative is sitting here until I become a mushroom....

allergies kicking in

March 3rd, 2005 at 08:14 am

Yesterday I went to the mall to find a pair of jeans. No go, so I saved $40-50, I guess. Then, the grocery store adventure. I tried hard to buy organic food, perfect-looking produce, and good deals on other things. I spent $77.57 -- $17.57 more than what I was aiming for, but I bought a lot. Simmering in my cup is a bag of chai vanilla tea, YUM. Unfortunately there were no leeks, but I was not surprised. I bought raspberry newtons on sale but avoided the oreo cookies on sale, even though I adore them. I am trying to eat better! and after that jeans-shopping fiasco, not to mention the wedding-outfit-shopping-fiasco, I told myself last night that I'm not going clothes shopping again until I lose 15 pounds.

My allergies have seriously been kicking my butt this week. I've started taking my meds again like crazy. I have no idea what is causing it...everything is frozen over, and mold and dust are here year-round. I should take out stock in Kleenex.

Still looking for a new job...I never heard from my last interviewer. I love that. I wish people would, at the very least, write an email and say "you're not a candidate" as soon as they know that. Especially if you have interviewed once or even twice there! *sigh*

keep on truckin'...

groceries

March 2nd, 2005 at 07:44 am

I'll probably be spending today. I need milk and bread and some other necessities of life, so to the grocery store I will go. Another batch of yogurt with my handy-dandy yogurt maker is necessary, and that requires milk!

Last night I made beer-crust pizza topped with spinach, onion, tomato, garlic, olive oil, mozzarella cheese, and feta cheese. It was really good. I've had that feta in my cheese drawer for quite a while but it was still tasty. Today I brought leftover pizza and a can of pears for lunch. Fruit has never been my thing, really, but I am trying to incorporate more into my diet.

Tonight?? I have no idea what to have for dinner. Maybe I'll start perusing the recipe sites.

My goal is to spend $60 or less on groceries tonight! And that will have to include a leek or two, should they be in the store, because I'm dying to try that leek soup.

MARCH!!!

March 1st, 2005 at 07:04 am

Seriously...I can't believe it is March already. This year is flying.

A sweet little red cardinal was outside my door this morning, singing away. I am so excited!! Can that possibly mean that spring is almost here?? I can't complain, it's been a really mild winter so far, but warm is where it's at.

Yesterday I paid the cable/internet bill, the car insurance bill, put some more into savings, and filled up the gas tank. Today I think might actually be a no-spend day!

Lunch yesterday was chili from the freezer (crockpots rock); dinner last night was miscellaneous stuff from the freezer; lunch today is bean soup from the freezer. I realized last night that I need to get better at eating that stuff up, lest it get kind of stale and freezer burned. Dinner tonight will be....something....I really need to go to the grocery store but I am putting it off.

I'm reading "French Women Don't Get Fat"...fascinating! I think maybe I can do this (with a few modifications). I'm sorry, but there is no way I am going to eat three courses for every meal with a separate plate for each course when I don't have a dishwasher! Nor can I go to the "market" every other day when 1) the farmer's market only exists here in the summer, and 2) shopping every other day is not financially viable nor is it logical. I'd like to have a life outside of my food shopping. Give up chocolate? No way! But I can cut back, and I can start adding more variety and more fruits and vegetables. There's another thing...Leek Soup. I wonder if leeks are even in the stores here. Guess I'll have to go take a look!!

I would looooooove to save $2000 this year, put $2500 into my Roth IRA this year, and lose 30 pounds this year. I think I can do it!