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Car Wreck and Christmas Gifts.

October 14th, 2008 at 08:48 am

DH was in a car accident yesterday. A lady decided to turn on green without a turn arrow right into DH's car. Don't ask me how that happend? I'm still trying to figure that out unless she was on her cell or something. She hit the driver side door and somehow drove down the side of it. There's door damage, damage on both the front side panel and back side panel (that black trim is only hanging), running bar is sagging, and if you notice the back tire, that's a spare. She knocked the tire off the rim and bent the rim so DH had to change it to be able to move it. Those doors don't even open anymore.

He's ok but we're having to deal with his car and the other insurance company. He wasn't at fault so I guess that's a good thing. We're waiting and seeing what they're going to decide to do in regards to fixing it. I really hope they will fix it...it's been such a good car. Arg! There's really never a dull moment here.

On the other end of the spectrum here...I have gone ahead and got some Christmas shopping out of the way. I always dread buying for DH's niece and nephews. There are 5 of them and it always gets to be a pain trying to find age appropriate toys...and affordable toys at that. Well, this year I decided to go the clothing route. This is because I'm concerned with the way the economy is going and I'd rather them be clothed than have more toys than they already have. So I surfed Walmart's website yesterday and was able to find each child a winter outfit. I may not be the "cool" aunt this Christmas but at least they'll be warm. Oh yeah, and the total was only $43 for all 5 kids. I only shopped clearance items. Suprisingly enough, they already had some of the winter stuff on clearance. I also did ship to the store for free shipping.

So while we wait and see about the car, at least I've got one thing out of the way.

Sorry I Haven't Been Around, But I Got A Promotion

September 22nd, 2008 at 07:01 am

Seems like these days it just work work work! Sorry I haven't really been around, but I can assure you I haven't fallen off the boat!

It's been 2 weeks now since I got my promotion. I was promoted to director of marketing. I work in real estate so I keep up with The Real Estate book, our advertising in the local paper, internet advertising, and marketing for individual houses. I also provide a "think tank" for agents who have lost their way in regards to advertising. It was somewhat of a lateral move, but I did get more money outta it. Plus, this is the position I want career wise.

I didn't get the raise that was initally purposed. However, first talks were before everything tanked. I am very surprised I even got much a raise at all. Heck, I'm surprised I even have a job at this point. Having that said, the market has really got me concerned. Aside from the housing market in general, it just seems to me like everything is in a downward sprial. Now don't get me wrong...I think the markets will recover it's just a question of when.

With that, DH and I sat down and spoke about this. We feel that paying down c.c's is a tremendous deal. Especially since it's going to be harder to get any type of credit from now on. However, being the scaredy cat I am, I really felt like we needed to have some type of EF just in case I do lose my job or God forbid a total market crash. So I have taken away some of the extra that we were putting towards c.c's and am now putting it into the EF. We've only saved a little over $1000 but we did it in a short time so I'm confident.

Like I stated prior, I haven't fallen off the boat. It seems as though this fall/winter season the 2 layered shirts (short sleeved on top of long sleeved)will be in style for the little boys. So I've gone to the flea market the past 2 weekends to look for winter stuff for him. I found a good bit of quality clothing for him. What I decided to do was to buy him a size bigger than what he wears. He's in a 2T. So I've been buying 3T. They aren't gapingly big but big enough to wear again. So I'm buying both the long sleeved and the short sleeved to wear together and then he'll be able to use the short sleeved again in the spring/summer and the long again the next fall/winter. He's getting better with the mess skills so we'll see.

Everything here seems to be scooting along, aside from the gas storage we've been experiencing since Ike.

Short Of Building An Ark

August 26th, 2008 at 07:55 am

My goodness...it has been raining for 3 consecutive days here in GA. I shouldn't complain too much as it is helping out our drought situation. I honestly can't remember the last time we've had so much rain.

There hasn't been a lot to report here thus lack of posts, but we're still hanging in there.


August 8th, 2008 at 10:43 am

It's been a couple of days since I posted last but I've just been so busy. My sister finally moved back to the US from Japan after 3 years and she moved in with us. Soooo I've been having to get her settled in and used to our frugal ways regarding the A/C and the turning off of the water heater. I must continue to remind myself it will take her a while to get used to that as I keep coming home to find the water heater on >:|. School for me has also been hectic with midterms and all.

DH had been reminding me about needing new tires for his SUV for probably about 3 months. He has those big tread truck tires which = expensive. I think it was going to be close to $600. I didn't want to have to buy those so I kept ignoring him. He sent me an email at work one day saying he'd worked out a "deal" with his friend who just became the regional manager of a tire place. $400 to get the tires and install them. Granted with the price of these tires, $400 was a deal but the fact of spending $400 still hurt my feelings.

I had been complaining to my dad about needing tires and it turned out he had found a real deal on some tires. The only catch was, they were used. Apparently, all used tires don't have a bad rap. As freak as it is, someone could've just gotten brand new tires and then gotten in a wreck totaling their car. Then the salvage shop would've just taken off the then used tires and they look perfectly new. Believe me, I voiced my concern of spending money only to fix the problem temporarily. It just made sense to go ahead and spend the $400 to get the whole life outta the tires instead of getting them cheap and only getting like 6 months.

Well we went to the place my dad had found. The tires they'd found were practically brand new. They were white letter Bridgestones and the letters were surprisingly very white and the treads didn't look like they'd seen much road. Being a very critical person, I was much satisfied. Total cost for tires and installation: $170. Couldn't beat that price with a stick.

So We Went To The Vet

August 3rd, 2008 at 02:48 pm

This is Duke. He's an English Pointer. In my last post I talked about having to take him to the vet and the dreaded cost. Well, the visit ended up costing $77.07. It turns out he has an ear infection. We got some antibiotic ointment for his ear. We're hoping that it's just a random infection that will go away in a week. Otherwise, the vet says it may be due to food allergies and in that case we'll have to feed him a special dog food. I soooo hope it's not that because that food can get expensive.

We also ended up doing a heart worm test because he's kind of under weight. The vet said it could be because he went from spending almost 24 hrs in a crate in his old environment to now being able to run around our backyard whenever he pleases, but he just wanted to cover everything. The test did come back negative so we just need to work on making him eat more.

This is Puddin'. She is a Jack Russell/Pug mix. She came along too. She came for the Humane Society fundraiser. Both dogs were able to get their 3 year rabies vaccines for $10 ea. I thought that was a great deal! It turned out being a bit chaotic but in the end we got everything done. It was neat to see so many different breed dogs. DS absolutely enjoyed it. He got to pet so many dogs and it was nice to be around so many nice people.

Well, at least we've got this behind us and hopefully Duke's ear infection won't be related to food allergies.

Ahh....The Dreaded Vet Visit

August 2nd, 2008 at 05:11 am

I'm gonna have to take one of the dogs to the vet today. We just got him and have had him a short time now. I took him in from a divorce situation where he was being neglected. He's been having a problem with one of his ears. I thought he had ear mites so I called the vet and asked if the ear mite stuff at the store would work and they said it would help. Well I bought it and treated him. Well now, it seems that it's gotten worse. Touching the ear and him shaking his head apparently brings pain and he cries. I can't stand to see him like that so we're going to the vet today. I'm not exactly sure how much it's going to cost but I'm going to assume it's not going to be below $60. At least I have cash and won't need to use any c.c's.

On a frugal note though, the Humane Society is having a fundraiser today at local pet supply store where they are offering 3 year rabies vaccines for $10 and other discounted services like nail clipping and flea treatments ect.. The vet here charges about $15 for 1 year. Both of the dogs are due, so I'm going to take both after we make the vet visit. I'm also going to get the new dog a flea/tick treatment for $10. I thought that was a really good deal. Plus, since it's a fundraiser my purchase is considered a donation so I can write it off with my taxes.

The Power Bill

July 27th, 2008 at 02:47 pm

Today has been a no spend day. Actually it's been a very lazy day. Friday was my birthday so we got a sitter to watch DS and went out with some friends on Saturday. We stayed out kind of late so today was catch up on sleep day lol. I'm making shepard's pie for dinner tonight. Not really a summer meal, but it's cheap, easy, and makes for good leftovers for the week's lunches.

I got my power bill. I've actually been excited to receive it just to see how much we were going to save since cutting back. We have been limiting out power usage during peak times. We have been turning off the water heater while not using it. We run the dryer during non peak times and we use the dry towel in with it (it does speed the drying up) We installed a programmable thermostat keeping the AC turned off from 3am-4pm and then when it is on it's set to 76.

Our house is almost 1600 sq ft. Last month's power bill (not using methods listed above) was $185 and that was using 1774 kw over 29 days. This months power bill (using methods above) was $163 and that was using 1559 kw over 33 days. I was still upset that it was so high. I guess it's just because it's summer. I know they increase their prices then because we had a comparable month of usage back in February and the bill was only $123. Any other ideas where I can cut back??

Interesting Thought. What's Your Take?

July 21st, 2008 at 06:25 am

DH just sent me this email. Not that I am endorsing this or believe every forward I receive, but I thought it was interesting therefore bringing up. I am curious to know what your take on it would be:

Apparently, quite a few somebodies voted for 'change'?

The current president is to blame for our present circumstances. True, or not? After all, he has been in office for almost 8 years! Why is it that, only recently, so many economic woes have begun to surface? If we look back, could we find some related causes?

Do you think it might have something to do with what happened in the election of 2006?

Just before that election took place:
1) Consumer confidence stood at a 2 1/2 year high;
3) The unemployment rate was 4.5%.

4) The housing industry was booming

5) Home equity was at an all-time high

6) Stocks, mutual funds, and other investments were showing consistent gains.

In the election of 2006, Americans were unhappy with the president and the Republican controlled Congress . It was clear that they wanted a CHANGE, and they GOT IT! As a result, a Democratic Congress was voted in and has been in control of the government for almost two years.

Since then:

1) Consumer confidence has plummeted.
2) The cost of regular gasoline has risen to over $4.00 a gallon.

3) Unemployment is up to 5% (a 10% increase);
4) American households watched $2.3 trillion in equity value evaporate.

5) Stocks, mutual funds and other investments have seen record losses;
5) Home equity has dropped by over $1.2 trillion dollars;
6) 1% of American homes are now in foreclosure.

At whom should we be pointing the finger of blame? The average American doesn't realize that Congress makes the laws, and has ultimate control over the conditions that are present in this country----not the President. He gets to work with whomever "we the people" elect. Was voting for Change a good move? You decide.

Yeah, It Could've Been Done Sooner

July 20th, 2008 at 10:41 am

It's been a busy Sunday today. I am the biggest procrastinator! It's nothing new, I've always been that way....but somehow I always find the time to get it done.

I have already done my couponing through the paper today. I wasn't very impressed with anything that was in there, but there were a couple that I clipped. I also checked the grocery inserts. Turns out Ingles has white loaf bread on sale for 68 cents this week. I will be making a run probably tomorrow to pick up some to freeze. They are also having store brand ketchup on sale for 92 cents. That's great in comparison to the $2 we pay for Heniz. I told DH I was going to buy that this week and he got mad and demanded I not buy it...that he won't eat anything but Heniz. I can't taste the difference....it's just ketchup. I'm thinking I may just buy it and put it in the Heniz container we have. I doubt he'll notice.

My sister has lived in Japan for the past 3 years on an english teaching contract. Her contract is finally up and she will be coming home on the 28th. I know it will be weird for her to come back to the US after that long as essentially she has to totally start over. She will be living with me until she gets her bearings straight. So....I'm having to really clean the house, wash clothes, ect. Our new dog has a real bad shedding problem and she's allergic, so I'm trying to do something about that. We have the Bissel pet vac (best vac I've ever had) that grabs the hair so I'm using that too.

I am also baking some bread in the new bread maker. I made cinnamon rolls last night that ended up pretty good. DH loves them and always asks for me to buy them when I grocery shop. I'm glad I'm able to make these now to save some money. I'm going to keep making the bread even though I said I was going to buy some at Ingles this week. I'm not exactly sure what the cost is to bake a 1 lb loaf, but you can't pass up 68 cent bread. Heck, that's even cheaper than Aldi's.

On top of just standard stuff, I've got some homework and a test I need to do tonight for my online classes. I'm gonna have to wait for DS to go to bed for me to be able to do that.

On a lighter note, in my last post I stated I was disappointed I wasn't able to find some Express Editor Pants at Goodwill. Well, I was able to win an auction on Ebay today. I got 6 pairs of pants (Abercrombie, The Limited, Express) all for $14.82....AND this included the pair of editor pants I wanted. That breaks down to $2.47 a pair which is less than Goodwill.

Successful Trip To Goodwill

July 19th, 2008 at 10:08 am

I've been wanting to check out the Goodwill store we have in town for a while. Since DS was having a restless morning we decided to go. I would say it was a pretty successful trip. Well....they were kind of skimpy on DS' size (24mths-2T) so I was only able to find a pair of overalls for him to wear now, but I did find a pair of brand new shorts (retail tags still attached). They were 4T but they were a solid color so they won't go out of style and he'll grow into them.

I then went to look for clothes for DH. That man won't throw anything away not to mention he has no shame. He'll go to work in SUPER faded shirts. I can't stand it! He's a professional, he should look like one. So, when I buy him clothes, I throw out how ever many faded shirts to match. I was able to find him 2 Izod polo shirts and an Old Navy polo shirt all in great condition.
Since I have been losing weight, my pants I've got don't fit. I've slowly been putting them on Ebay. I was able to find two pairs of Tommy Hilfiger jeans, and 2 pairs of black pants for work (The Limited and Old Navy.) All were in great condition! I was hoping I'd be able to find a pair of Express Editor pants, but sadly I wasn't able to.

Everything I bought I felt was a great deal. Especially since I was able to get name brands, but I saved the best deal for last. I was able to find a 1lb bread maker for $6! Granted, it is a smaller one I was still stoked to find it. With only 2 adults and a toddler I think it should work. I brought it home, cleaned it, and then went online to find the manual. I was excited that I was able to find the manual and the recipes! Right now I'm making some cheesy bread to go with dinner!

All in all our trip was good. I was just kind of disappointed there wasn't a lot there for DS. I'm thinking I may go check out the Goodwill close to work and see if they have stuff for him.

Kind Of Slow

July 18th, 2008 at 09:39 am

It's been kind of slow here lately. Well, I wouldn't say slow, but slow on stuff to report. I am still just as busy with school and work.

While on a break at work today, I checked my email and was surprised to see a survey request from Pinecone. It's been a while since I've had one. I jumped on that as soon as I saw it. I recently just changed my payment method with them to Paypal instead of a check, so hopefully I'll have $3-$5 soon. That will go to the c.c's. I also hope they will send me the product to try.

We haven't gotten the power bill yet. I'm so anxious to get it so I can see how much we've saved. It's riduculious how much I'm excited to get a freakin' bill.

We've sold a couple of things on Ebay here lately but alas, no one has put an offer in on the dress yet. I do have 1 watching it, so here's hoping.

Sellin' On Ebay And Other Things

July 14th, 2008 at 09:48 am

I posted some of DS' clothes on Ebay last week. I only made a couple of bucks but it was either that or take them to Goodwill. Last night I posted a wedding dress I had purchased, only to realize at the last minute it would not fit. Talk about a scramble at David's Bridal when I found that out! I had to buy a totally new dress!! Anyways, I posted it with all the accessories I had with it. Sad it's brand new and never was worn, but I'm hoping someone will like it enough to get it. I felt a buy it now of $225 w/ free shipping was decent. We'll see.

Moving on, we finally made the switch over to DSL. Turns out the DSL company that was local to us offers a plan where you don't have to pay for a phone line. You're given one anyways, but you only get free inbound calls, 911, 800 #s. Other outgoing calls are .10 a min. Which was fine with me because we normally just use our cells anyways. The plan is $44.99 a month which is about $12 cheaper than the cable we had. The new dsl modem was $62.00 but you get a $50 rebate, so really only $12. Also, after much searching, I found the company offers a $5 discount a month for the first year when you switch from cable. So I submitted my cable bill for that. We'll see on the first bill. So for the same speed service, I think it was a smart idea.

DH and I have been doing well on turning off the hot water heater when not in use. We have also started using a dry towel in the dryer. I did notice less drying time with it. We have also been doing better about not running the AC so hard. (Turning it off at 3am until 4:30pm and then it's only between 78-76) this is probably the only month that I've really wanted the power bill to hurry up a come. I just want to see how much we've saved.