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Archive for October, 2006

Survey Check---Christmas Fund

October 24th, 2006 at 10:04 pm

Today I received a $200 check for participating in a product test for 2 weeks. Not a bad deal. Smile
Since Christams is coming and we have caught up on the bills, I have added that to our Christmas fund that I started on Friday. We are putting all 'extra' money earned in it until Christmas is paid for. Amazingly it already has $348 in it!!

$200.00 Product Test
37.50 from Excise Tax Refund
60.00 DH fixed a motorcycle this weekend
45.00 DH autocad drawings
6.00 survey check
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$348.50 (the .50 went in the change jar)

DH also got a check for $62.50 today for mileage...we will use that for oil & filters and then put whatever is left in the fund.

Can I keep it a secret?

October 19th, 2006 at 09:45 pm

Well, its the 3rd payday in October, with one left to go, and I already have enough $$ in my checking account (with some to spare!!) to pay my mortgage due November 1. All other bills for this month have been deducted from my checking account This is a good feeling...a few months ago I wouldn't have had enough until Nov. 15, and probably would have had to borrow from savings to make the payment!
The dilemma is...should I tell DH?? He has gone along with the spending changes without complaining, and is happy about the progress made so far, but I can tell he is starting to get the old itch to buy something. If he knows that the money is available, he will inevitably want to spend some of it. He would never take it without telling me, thats not the problem...I just don't think he 'gets' that this is a lifestyle change that I am trying make, and not just a temporary fix to a problem.
Maybe I will try to work out an allowance system.

401k Statements

October 19th, 2006 at 02:08 am

It is that time of year...our 401k quarterly statements came in the mail today. Both gained 2.71% for the quarter. Everytime I get them I am pleased to see the money adding up. Because we have been contributing for so long, we don't even notice the money that is taken out every week...it is like it doesn't exist.
I sent an email to HR today to see if I can increase my contribution by 1%...but I think I will have to wait until January to do that.

Electric bill is WAY down!

October 13th, 2006 at 07:51 pm

I opened my electric bill today and it was $67.80!! That is the lowest it has been since moving into this house 2.5 years ago. The highest was $153 this past August.
Its nice to see my effort paying off. I've been turning off lights, the computer, using the air dry cycle on the dishwasher, and unplugging quite a few things when they are not being used.

Paying Extra

October 12th, 2006 at 08:02 pm

Today I paid an extra $150 on my car payment and an extra $100 on the Home Equity Loan. I am determined to get rid of this debt!!!

I went a little nuts

October 11th, 2006 at 01:21 am

I thought I had it all under control...but I freaked the day before the birthday party thinking I wouldn't have enough food for everyone. So I went back to the store and bought more of everything. Well, I would have been fine, and now I have a ton of extra food. I am going to do my best to use it all up so it does not go to waste.
Does anyone know if you can freeze Ricotta Cheese?

He's 1!!!!!!!!

October 6th, 2006 at 02:07 am

DS turned 1 yesterday and we are having a party at home for him this weekend. We're expecting about 25 - 30 people at the house.
Today I did the shopping....
I am making a lasagne
A veggie tray
Cheese and Crackers
Chips and Dip
Cake & Ice Cream
Soda and Coffee

I got really good prices on everything at PriceRite...spent $28 for the food and drinks.

My sister is making the birthday boy cake (Elmo's face), and we are ordering a cake from the Bakery for everyone else.

I'm making favors of with little cupcake picture frames bought for $1.29 each at the Christmas Tree Shop (MIL had the idea and bought 10 frames...I had to buy 8 more)

So all told, the party will cost us about $60 or so, not including his gift, which will be about $35, plus a small deposit into his savings account.

Raises...YAY!!!

October 5th, 2006 at 09:53 pm

DH and I got our cost of living increases this week...finally. The increase will be retroactive from Sept 3 so our next checks will be nice.
I should be getting another raise soon...I recently was promoted to 2nd shift supervisor, and was promised that a pay raise would follow after cost of living raises were distributed.
The plan is to add another 1% to each of our 401k accounts, but we cannot make that change until December (company policy).
Until then all extra money will be put toward our truck payment.

Coupons

October 2nd, 2006 at 09:32 pm

I noticed I am using fewer coupons lately, but I am also spending less at the grocery store.
Part of the reason is that I am doing a lot more shopping at PriceRite, a store that has very low prices, but does not accept coupons. The other reason is that I am using fewer 'convenience' foods. (Rice and pasta mixes, packaged and ready to bake cookies, frozen meals, etc.) I have been cooking more from scratch and buying big bags of rice and potatoes for side dishes. I don't buy things that I normally wouldn't 'because I have a coupon', unless it is something new that I have to try out. Smile
When I would get competitors store coupons for $8 off if you spend $80, I would go to the store and spend $80 just to get the $8 savings. I would buy a bunch of stuff I did not need.
I am down from about $70 a week for groceries to maybe $40 most weeks.
I also don't shop unless I need to. I used to go every week, and now I go every 11-12 days or so, and sometimes longer.
I still regularly use coupons for household cleaners, diapers, cat food and litter.

Online Survey Tally

October 2nd, 2006 at 08:21 pm

This past week I received $82 for taking online surveys....a pretty good week. I have been keeping track of all of my earnings (cash and gift certificates) and decided to add it all up this weekend. Not counting sites where I earn prizes (magazine subscriptions, books, etc.) I have earned $1067 so far this year!
This total will be going up...right now I am in the middle of a test that will pay $200 on completion. I also have 3 more survey invitations in my inbox!