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Archive for September, 2005

automatic savings

September 28th, 2005 at 07:22 am

I completely forgot that I had automatically programmed my savings account to pull money out last Friday. Whoops! Good thing I had a little cushion! I'm happy about it, though...that means I have more money in savings than I would have had. I'm a little paranoid about not having enough money to get through October (that's why I wasn't going to put money in savings), but I think it's unfounded. I have vacation reiumbursement coming with my last paycheck, and though it's not a lot, it will help. Especially since I am going clothes shopping with a friend tomorrow night. I desperately need new work clothes before next week.

So many people aren't feeling well around here! What a bummer! Funny, considering we have no actual contact with each other. Maybe our journals are contagious? Stick Out Tongue

who gave me this cold?

September 25th, 2005 at 04:50 pm

I've been ill all weekend, but it seriously attacked me today. I have spent most of the day in bed reading, so all my plans went out the window. I hope I recover quickly!!

The whole month of September has been a bust, budget-wise. I think it calls for a write-off and start-over in October. I bought all kinds of crazy stuff - I don't know what has got into me. Yesterday I hit a 50% off bead sale. On Friday I ordered a flat iron and hair products online. I guess I am going through some sort of odd transitionary period...hopefully it will go away with the new month and I can snap back into financial reality.

Last week of work coming up...this is going to be weird. I am busy every night this week except for Monday!

happy autumnal equinox

September 22nd, 2005 at 09:47 am

Everything with my job application went through (they checked everything...work history, education credentials, even fingerprints). I had no worries about it, but it's a relief nonetheless.

I bought a new messenger bag on ebags today, so now I'll have a sporty one and a more professional-looking one. It looks like it has a nice shoulder strap on it - that will be nice for the walk to and from the bus. I bought this one, in silver.

I'm getting my hair cut tonight, yay! I like revamping my look.

We had an enormous thunderstorm last night, complete with tornado warnings. I had my sweet little kitty in his cat carrier and we were ready to run to the basement if it looked like a funnel cloud was upon us. Luckily, we only got hit with a ton of rain and wind. The northern suburbs did not fair so well...I saw a number of wrecked houses on the news this morning. It appeared as though those fancy houses in new developments weren't built so well, because most of them had collapsed garages. I definitely want a sturdy, well-built house someday, not one that's thrown together!

always on the edge

September 21st, 2005 at 09:23 am

Perhaps I subconsciously sabatoge my budget every month. I justify purchases that I don't have budgeted, and then I try to figure out how to wiggle things around so I have enough money to pay off my credit card in full, along with rent. How ridiculous. Do I like feeling like I'm on the edge, somehow?

This month I'll receive an extra paycheck, simply because I'll be starting my new job next month. That will help with my inflated credit card bill, but I'll have to set enough aside to stay afloat in October until I get my first paycheck. I want to buy new work clothes, because I feel so "non-profit" and many of my clothes are disintigrating before my very eyes (with good reason - my standbys are at least 5 years old). I'm budgeting about $100 for that, but I'd like to spend much more. I'm getting my hair cut and colored before my new job starts (last time was in June), so that will be $90.

My new job does have a discounted bus pass program, so that will help, although I'm not sure what the discount will be. I like my new messenger bag, but it's really sporty. Does that say "I work downtown"? not really. I guess when I bought it I was thinking more along the lines of "riding my bike to the library and back." I need a classy-looking fall jacket, too, because my favorite one is 5 years old, puffy, and has paint marks on it. I don't want to start my new job looking like I belong in a What Not To Wear episode.

Change is good, but stressful.

good benefits

September 19th, 2005 at 03:10 pm

Thanks everyone!! I am really excited about my new job. Only nine days left of my current one...and my boss was at my desk for roughly half of the day today. I see that happening every day for the next 9 days. Oh well, it's almost over.

I think I'll have great benefits at my new job. Medical will be half the cost it is now, and I will have a 401k. They will match 80% of what I put in, up to 6%. I will find out more when I start, I suppose. I'll shell out less for gasoline every month because I'll take the bus to work, but I'll have to pay for bus passes. It should be interesting to see how this works out. If I'm contributing to a 401k, I won't have as much to contribute to my Roth IRA, my savings accounts, or my smaller college loan. The thought of a part-time job after work has never thrilled me...normally during the week, all I want to do is come home after work and chill. It may be a necessity, though, if I'm going to achieve my savings goals.

I asked if my car insurance premium would be lower since I'd be taking to bus to work, and they said that I'd have to drive 7500 miles per year or less. Yikes! It would only be a $63 per year discount anyway - not worth it to have them checking my mileage.

I do need to revamp my budget...thanks for the ideas. It will be an ongoing project.

GOOD NEWS

September 16th, 2005 at 08:36 am

I GOT THE JOB!!!! The interview I had on Monday panned out. I am so excited!!!!! I am starting my new job in two weeks. The pay is slightly less, but I don't even care. I will be doing what I want to do, all day long.

I just told my current boss that I am resigning. She is very upset. Telling her was one of the hardest things I've had to do in a while...my stomach has been in knots ever since I accepted my new position. It's over now, though, and we all lived through it.

I'll be celebrating this weekend! Yippee!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

stricter budget?

September 13th, 2005 at 11:10 am

I need to get really strict with myself about my budget. I never follow what I set. I manage to justify every expenditure no matter if it is in the budget or not. What I do now is a good way to keep track of what bills I have yet to pay, and how overbudget I can go, yet still pay my credit card but...that's not healthy.

I am craving chocolate and would probably go to the store if I had any cash my wallet. I have spent it all on interview parking this week, though. I suppose that is a good thing. I would ordinarily have some chocolate in my desk drawer, but last week a coworker told me that my boss went through my (locked) desk drawers while I was out. She was supposedly looking for "something" but did not tell me about it. I noticed that things were misplaced. Apparently after rifling through my things, my boss then went to my coworker and told her that I am such a packrat, and that I have a ton of candy in my drawers (I had half a bag of mint patties). That made me SO angry that I emptied out all of my desk drawers, took nearly all of the personal items off of my desk, and brought it all home. I would bet money that my boss went back into my desk drawers after I left for the day, looking for my candy. I feel so violated. I know it is every employer's right to go through employee desks...but she could have at least told me about it. Or had the decency not to go blabbing about my desk to everyone else. On the bright side, my desk is very clean and clutter-free now.

Sent off two thank you cards to interviewers today. I really hope something pans out.

Things I have left to pay for this month:
- massage tomorrow
- cell phone bill
- eye appt copay
- gasoline
- maybe a few groceries
- car insurance
- rent
- credit card bill

I am definitely not going to make my September goals. Due to my bloated credit card bill, I could only pay $50 to my college loan, $25 to emergency fund, and $25 to family fund. The only item I succeeded in completing was the $75 to the Christmas gift fund. This is what happens when I spend too much time shopping for beads and books!

another interview

September 12th, 2005 at 11:08 am

Things are looking up. I had another interview today at a different business. It was hardcore - three proofreading/writing tests, then an interview with a HR rep, then an interview with the person who would be my boss. Each interviewer had THREE pages of questions to ask me. I felt I did pretty well, though. I felt I had a much better "rapport" with this supervisor than I did with the last one, too! They should let me know next week. I sent out an email thank you to both interviewers, and will write up paper thank you notes when I get home tonight. I really hope this one comes through! It would be a slight pay cut, but not nearly as much as the other job.

I am way overbudget already this month. Self-medicating with "stuff"? Could be. I have lots of beading supplies now, so I think have a great start on Christmas gifts. I just have to sit down and start figuring out how to make things. I made two bracelets this weekend, one that's on my wrist right now and another matching one that I'm sending to my sister. It's always fun to get mail when you're living in a dorm.

blowing money left and right

September 9th, 2005 at 07:19 am

I don't know what my problem is, but I've been spending like crazy lately. A bookstore near me is closing, so everything is 50% off. I've been there twice already. A couple of the books I bought were Christmas gifts, but most were for me! I also bought pants and a purse for my interview yesterday, and new foundation (I was almost out). I've been buying a lot of crafty stuff, too. I also overdrafted my checking account, something I don't think I have ever done! UGH. I tried to hurry and deposit money back into the account, but I didn't make it in time. *sigh* So that was $33 down the drain. Then my employer was late with the paycheck process, so the money couldn't be direct deposited like usual. I have automatic savings account drafts coming out of my checking today, so I had to race to the bank this morning with my paper check before they went through. Big mess. I need to be more careful and leave a cushion in my account at all times.

I sent a thank you email and a thank you note in the mail to my interviewer yesterday. We'll see!

Tonight I have to buy a few groceries, but it should be quiet overall. I'll be alone tonight, so maybe I'll read, or go to the library, or play with my new kitty! He really is a darling little cat.

interview done...

September 8th, 2005 at 09:29 am

...and beer in hand. I took the afternoon off. Maybe I will stop by the library later.

It went ok. I can never tell with interviewers. This interviewer was rather different too...she talked to the desk the whole time and avoided eye contact. And she talked nonstop. At the end she said that those candidates with whom she felt a rapport with will be invited back for second interviews. I have no idea if I am even near the playing field much less on it. I have a tendency to clam up a little around people I don't know, and not share all the casual details of my life with them like some people can do so easily. I need to get better at that, because it is costing me jobs.

Anyhow, we'll see. I'll know within a week. I'm going to write a thank you letter to her right now. I'd take the job in flash, because I would really learn a lot!

Keep your fingers crossed...and thanks for the wise words. You're right, I should go for it if it is offered to me. I hope I get a second interview. I will be surprised if I do!

work for love or $$$?

September 7th, 2005 at 07:47 am

I have a job interview tomorrow in the field I want to work in. Starting at the bottom is, in my opinion, the only way I am going to break into this field, because I've been trying for three years and gotten nowhere. It's an assistant position, and I'm fairly certain it is going to pay less than what I'm making now. A lot less. As in, in New York City they are paying these people $22K per year.

I have to take a serious look at my budget and see just how low I can go and still pay the bills. But what do I do? Work in a position that might get my foot in the door and lead to something else down the line? Or work for the money? My car is dying a rapid death and I need to replace it. I can hardly afford to do that now, much less at a lower salary.

where did the weekend go?

September 6th, 2005 at 07:09 am

Family really means a lot to me. I bought $110 in stuff for my sister's dorm room, helped her move in, took her and my mom shopping all day yesterday, and did my best to be entertaining. We had a really nice time together, but it was too short, as usual. They stayed with us for two nights. My SO is the nicest man in the world for being so sweet when he didn't feel well at all. I'm so glad my mom came to visit...it's been a long time.

I spent way too much money this weekend, of course. This morning I discovered that I had spent more than what's in my bank account, so I had to hurry up and transfer some savings into my account. Whoops. Hopefully it will drop into my account before the rent check is withdrawn. I also completely blew my first September goal by charging more onto my credit card, but it will get paid off this month.

I got two job calls on Friday. I need to call them back today, but it's hard to slip away and make a private phone call in such a small office. I sit in a cube, so there's no door to close, and people go around screaming my name at the top of their lungs if I'm not sitting in my chair (I wish I was kidding).

I can't watch any more Katrina coverage. I bought something from Crafter's United, so I feel like I did a small part. How can our government be so slow with help? It seems like they are always rushing troops to far-flung reaches of the world, but suddenly can't figure out what to do when things go down at home. I've said it before, I'll say it again -- I can't wait for 2008. It feels like an enternity away at the moment.