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I have an idea.

June 3rd, 2011 at 08:33 am

I have $10 Kohl's cash. I was trying to think of something I NEEDED.

Well then something popped into my mind. My cousin is getting married next weekend, and her bridal shower is next week.

I will not be attending the wedding because I had drill BUT I will be able to attend the bridal shower.

The bride and groom are registered at Target, Menard's and KOHL's.

So the mission is to look over their Kohl's registery and see what I can find that is not too much over $10 but still nice. No matter what I buy I saved $10 so I will be able to get a nice gift for cheaper since I can not think of anything I NEED from Kohl's at this time.

Decluttering Weekend

May 31st, 2011 at 07:24 am

This weekend was productive, besides catching up on some much need sleep, I got some cleaning done.

I cleaned the basement family room. It still needs a bit of work (It should only take 15 minutes but realistically it WILL TAKE ME 1 hour because paper sorting takes me longer than it should) but it is a vast improvement. I got 5 boxes and two bags of things ready to go to the thrift store. Half is in my garage, stacked by my car. I had it in the trunk but then we had to go get groceries. I took it out and I don't plan to put it back in until I am ready to drop it off. I don't want to waste the gas.

I just need to record two boxes of stuff into the excell document, I wrote it down on a piece of paper for the time being. But the table that the stuff was piled up on is now 90% cleared so it is so nice. The remaining stuff is papers I need to go through.

I also super spring cleaned my sons bathroom. So I am proud that I got that off my to do list.

I bought two blankets at Kohl's to take with on my deployment; they were on clearance for $3.99 and I had a 15% coupon plus I got $10 Kohl's cash to use later because I spent just over $50. I purchased shoes for my son in addition to the blankets.

Part of the cleanup at the house was rolling the comforter and sheets that I took with to Annual Training so I could repack them into the tuff box I have at my office. I also took some other stuff from the house to pack into my tuff box. So slowly I am getting the things I will take on my deployment out of my house and packed up. :0)

I also washed the Master Bedroom Bedding, I then packed it and put it into a vaccum seal space bag (So it would take up less room) but mostly so it would not get all full of doggy hair before I need it next. It is a cold spring or summer here, Kinda wish I had only packed away one blanket BUT I have other blankets that we can use on the bed until it gets tooo hot for blankets.

My goal for this week is to continue boxing up stuff for the thrift store and clearing out the storage room. The storage room needs to be cleared out and then organized. I need to go through the stuff with an open mind and donate stuff I will not use, Toss stuff that is not donate-able and organize all things I want to keep.

Back from Annual Training...To flooding.

May 27th, 2011 at 06:52 am

Well we just finished Annual Training. It is nice to be done. I have a ton of stuff to get caught up on everything.

I balanced my checkbook. Now I need to figure out what to do with the extra money in the checkbook (it is really not extra because I used my Credit Card so I would not have to balance my checkbook for the 18 days we had annual training).

Our Battalion got called up again for flood duty, I am not sure if I can call the good news good news but.....The sort twisted good news is I do not have to go out of town for flood duty IF I get reassigned to support flood operations 100%. The reason is that the flooding is caused by the river in my town. So the sorta good news is I will not have to go out of town, the bad news is that it is MY town that is flooding. I live in a high end of town, I think even if the DAM would break I would still be sitting in a good location. This is not the case for two of my good friends and one of my cousins.

The really bad news is that with the levels of water they are letting out of the dam to prevent the dam from failing the city could be watching dikes and having people with sandbag moats around their homes until August.

Other news, today is the last day of school. I am suppose to run to my son's school sometime today (possible during my lunch time) so my son's class can wish me well on my deployment. I am hoping I do not get assigned sandbag detail today so I can make the appointment.

I scratched my glasses during annual training, one scratch is right in front of my eye. I was hoping to make an eye exam and just buy a second pair of glasses (a budget priced but high quality pair). But it looks like now I will have to buy the second pair and then when they come in, send these in for new lenses. I will save money on just replacing the lenses, so that is what I am planning to do.

Have a good day!!

The savings have started (I hope)

May 6th, 2011 at 07:13 am

Yesterday I picked up my cell phone from Fed-EX. I was having my computer looked at the night before so I was not able to make it down to fed-ex between 5:50pm and 6pm to pick up the package in store.

Last night I charged my new phone, and just a few minutes ago I went online and started the process of porting my new number.

Once the port goes through, then I can cancel my cell phone service with AT&T and turn in my telephone. I save $20 a month with my new phone.

The awesome news, I LOVE LOVE LOVE my new phone, it is so much like my old Alltel phone. It also does not look refurbished at all. It looks brand spanking new. I am told it could take 2 hours to port the number up to 2 business days.

I am prepared for it to take up to 2 business days because I have not gotten my first bill from AT&T so I am not sure if my account number is my phone number like with alltel or if I have a different account number. Also my name is hypenated on my alltel bill and the program would not allow the hypen. Not sure if it is hypened with AT&T or smashed together or a space between the two words. Little stuff like that will make a difference.

Worst case, once my number is ported I will need to call AT&T and cancel then turn in my phone and stuff once I get back in town from Annual Training (10 days). They might require the equipment (phone, packaging, charger, books) sooner, which might mean I can't cancel the phone line until I am able to physically turn in the phone.

So I am crossing my fingers that I can get fully ported today and call and cancel my plan and turn in my phone this evening.

Computer slow down = Clean Livingroom

May 5th, 2011 at 07:15 am

I think it started Monday, but my computer was acting REALLY REALLY slow.

It could have been internet explorer 10 which once I installed half my internet add ons did not support. (Could not print coupons, could not use my SwagBucks tool bar and more).

It could have been that my computer needed to be defraged.

It could have been a virus my anti-virus did not find.

Anyway, I started by removing the internet explorer 10 update. That helped a bit, but my coupons printer was still not seeing the the program. And my swagbucks toolbar seemed to showup about 50% of the time I would pull internet up.

So I decided to try a retrieval from a backup BEFORE the IE10 update. I went back and that DID NOT help. Actually that made it slow down BIG TIME. (AT this point I probubly needed to refrag).

Well instead I tried to wipe my computer, and use my 3 reboot DVD's. For some reason it did not go through 100%. So it partially rebooted BUT once I started trying to use it I would get the black screen of death.

Last NIGHT my friend came over and he wiped the hard drive again and used the reboot CD's and now it is working again. I need to remove some of the unwanted extra programs the computer companys always put on the computer, install my printer then do a defrag and disk cleanup and I should be good to go.

Right now it is operating fast and I am happy with it. Yesterday I was to the point of pricing out laptops. Funny how Computers are so essential.

I will be buying my buddy a case of beer when we get to camp next week (YES he is OVER 21). While I was waiting for my buddy to come over and see if he could figure out what was up, I cleaned the livingroom. I also sweept the upstairs and mopped.

It is amazing how much you can get done, when you CANT use your computer.

The only downside, I downloaded Amazons ebook reader to my computer and about 80 FREE ebooks. I need to figure out how to get my books reinstalled once I reinstall the reader. I plan to buy a KINDLE for my deployment so I have been slowly downloading FREE ebooks so I can just take them from my computer to the kindle as I want to read them. I realized that the ereader app for the computer is one of those that is not so user friendly. I would have LOVED to have those files somewhere in my documents section so my external hard-drive would have saved them when I do a hard drive backup....But nope they are on the desktop or cleverly hidden and my external hard drive does not save desktop items (most are just shortcuts anyway).

Need a Vacation plan for SOON!

May 3rd, 2011 at 10:36 am

Well I just finished Drill Weekend, I am STRESSED!!! I have Annual Training starting on the 9th of May. It lasts 18 days. I am starting to feel crazy.

I have been dieting but that crashed and burned yesterday when I got sick and ate what was on hand in the house. I know I will FAIL the weight body fat percentage on the 24th but part of me is at that point where there is only so much you can do, so I am like ^)*(^&%^ it!!!

The DOG pooooo-ed on the carpet this morning. That was the last straw. I texted a photo of it to BF before I gagged and cleaned it up. Lets say he was not overly happy to get that text photo. Now I am like 10 seconds from a mental break down and rivers of tears flowing.

Yesterday, my computer acted up. It has been acting up and so last night I was trying to fix it and well everything I tried just made it worse. So RIGHT before bed I started reformating the hard drive. Hopefully when I get home this afternoon the computer will be done reinstalling the software and I can just install the printer and link the internet.

Yesterday I ordered my new phone from straight talk. The order before did not process....It was a good thing. Now I paid $20 for a phone BUT!!! I got the phone I had wanted all along.

I am looking forward to my straight talk phone. I transition to AT&T today. I HATE my free replacement phone. It is a knock off like blackberry and I HATE it. The buttons are tiny. It is nothing like my ALLTEL LG Banter with full slider keyboard.

Hopefully I can keep my cool when I go to turn in my AT&T phone, because if they give me any problems I might explode into tears right there at the store.

$$$ I don't CARE. I need to balance my checkbook because I purchased gasoline and I purchased Subway one night after drill when it blizzarded and I was not feeling up to cooking. That is bad that I don't care about money.

I want to go pick up my kiddo from school and just disapear down the road. Maybe we will just keep driving until we get to lego land california.

Here if you kiddo misses more than 6 days of school you get in trouble, So it could be interesting if I just desided I have had enough and hit the road with kiddo in tow.

What will happen is I will pick up DS from after school daycare, take him home spend the night curled up in bed crying because I have too much on my shoulders right now then do it all over again tomorrow.

I hate spending money BUT.......

April 29th, 2011 at 09:42 am

I want to take a vacation.

I am suffering from burn out. I think a vacation would really help. I also want to create some lifetime memories.

DisneySteve would love my idea...Well maybe, since he might question IF I could afford it. If I asked Susie Orman would my idea be "Denied"?

I want to go to DisneyWorld in Florida, Staying either 3 or 4 days, then go to either Busch Gardens or Seaworld for 1 day; staying at the shades of green resort.

I went online and I can get three tickets from HOME to the Nearest Airport to DW for $550 each (non-stop). I am sure this will change a bit but I might actually be able to do much better with some research because I want to go in August and stops do not actually bother me.

I am looking at either the military 3 day hopper tickets for $99 or 4 day hopper tickets for $143 for Disney World. I am not sure IF the Soldier is Free and the Spouse and children at the quoted price or if the price is each (lots of confusing details in internet land but we will either buy one ticket (My Son since BF is a Service member also or three). Either way Max $297 (3 day) or $429 (4 day)

Then I am planning on doing the FREE military 1 day pass to Busche gardens OR Seaworld.

I am planning to stay at Shades of Green Resort, it is either $95 a night standard or $105 a night IF we want the pool side room. They also have some different deals going, I am deploying and they have a OIF/OEF special of 20% off (not sure if it works BEFORE the deployment or just during or after but if it works before that is even Cheaper).

So $2554 if I go max prices, for the 5 days.
$2173 if all discounts are applied for 5 days.
$2053 if all discounts are applied and stay 4 days.

There will be some food costs, but the room has a fridge and so I plan to purchase some food at the AAFES shop on Shades of green. We can buy cereal and milk for breakfast and fruit and bread and make sandwiches for lunch. We could either eat out for dinner or do easy groceries. (BF and I are used to going to the store and stretching our per diem).

I figure we can plan atleast one trip off location (outlet stores) and get our Disney Souveniors and eat atleast one of our non-grocery meals cheaper than if on Disney Property.

The kicker will be IF my BF can get time off work. Right now I am flexible I want either the first or second week of August. I believe by then he sould have some vacation built up since he will have been at his job nearly a year.

I hope I do it, BF says it is more a after Deployment vacation BUT I want to take a Cruise Vacation after the deployment and I am pretty sure it will involve getting DS a passport OR getting a babysitter.

I think if one 2.5K to 3K vacation a year keeps me from burning out and resulting in quiting my job and a loss of 38K income a year, then it is spending money to MAKE money. :0)

What do you think?

Help Please, Retirement % question.

April 28th, 2011 at 07:35 am

Divorced Female
age 34.5
Custodal Parent of a nearly 8 year old.

Homeowner with a 30 year Mortgage
134,000 loan balance 29.5 years remaining
ALL housing costs total 22.5% of gross income
My House Value approx: 206K
Utilities, Property Taxes and House Insurance currently is $500 per month.

The median home here costs $166,320. Home appreciation the last year has been 2.07 percent.
Compared to the rest of the country, My City's cost of living is 4.00% Lower than the U.S. average.

Emergency Fund of 8.5 Months Total Household Expenses

Current Retirement
TSP (401K) $75,923.01 Current Value
Roth IRA $7,925.39 Current Value
Total: $83,848.40

The Questions:
How much or what percent of my income do I need to be putting into retirement? I get confused with complicated retirement calculators. I want to live in my paid for home but take a few Nice Vacations a year. By Nice I mean a week or two in duration and to places out of the US, or all exclusive cruises (could be US based). I am not sure how much to budget for those kind of vacations Because I have NEVER taken one. :0(

Am I still BEHIND in investing or am I where I should be and can just invest normally instead of playing catch-up?

Did I forget any information you would need to calculate your answer?

Thank you!

Is a 16.5% return worth 30 years of delayed gratification??

April 27th, 2011 at 01:02 pm

Let me explain....Lately I have been really second guessing myself. Can I really keep this up to another 13 years.

If not I better make changes. Currently I am investing the MAX into my retirement. Because I do this it results in an earned income credit of $2640 more than I would get if I didn't save any in pre-tax dollars. This is basically 16.50% return on the deposit BUT I can't touch it until I am 65 years old.

I wonder is that 16.5% or $2,640 worth it, or should I start funding my Roth IRA and investing in the stock market then when I make a career change I can slowly sell my stock and use it to make my mortgage payments.

I guess option 2 is to instead of putting money into the Retirement account put that amount into my mortgage and then refinance/downsize when I make the change. But will I be refinancing with a higher interest rate? Applying 16,500 a year would take 8 years to pay off my mortgage. If I made it 8 more years in this job I would be crazy to quit.

Truthfully I have been unsatisified with my work life for about 2 years but I have been hanging in because I did not see any other choice. If I change jobs unless I downsize I will be house poor.

I wish I had been able to sell my house when I got divorced because then I would have had a smaller mortgage and would feel like I could make a change. Right now if you figure reducing my income by that 16,500 per year I need a job that makes 36K a year or approx $16 an hour, just to keep maintaining without any retirement savings.

I need a personal cheerleader, the reward is AWESOME if I can hold out in this job another 13 years. The reward is good if I can hold out in this job part time for another 9.5 years.

I am just getting burnt out, I am tired of working 40 hours a weeks plus having to work one weekend which means once a month I have a 12 day streatch without a day off. Once a year I have to leave my son with family for two weeks minimum. Next year I will gone from home for a whole year. I will make approxmately $500 more per month BUT my bills because of this go up MORE than $500 per month.

Last year I signed a 6 year extension but truthfully I am starting to think I should request a hardship discharge. The 6 year extension does not mean I could not switch to part-time, which would be alot easier. I could also go part-time then IF my part-time does not work with my new job request ING then possibly Discharge based on employment conflict.

Everytime I leave for Annual Training, for Job Training, Flood Duty it is getting harder and harder mentally on my son.

I need to start planning short term instead of long term because I don't know how much longer until I burn out. I guess another problem is I am tired of fighting the weight battle. I am allowed to weigh 149 pounds or % body fat. At 149 pounds I wear a size 7/8. My body naturally falls at 165 so the % body fat option has been my option for YEARS. Right now I need to drop weight to get down to my % body percentage. Some times I just wish I could eat what I want and exercise because I enjoy it instead of doing it because someone is going to be putting a tape measure to my body or counting my reps or timing me and judging me.

Rolling the dice with Prepaid.

April 27th, 2011 at 10:22 am

I have Alltel, I transition to AT&T on May 3rd. I have no contract with Alltel and none with AT&T. I plan on switching to Prepaid.

I have one month to make the switch without issues due to the fact they gave me a free phone.

I am considering 2 options.

I can do straight talk and pay either $30 getting 1000 min/text or $45 unlimited.
I can also do AT&T at $.10 a minute plus texting add ons.

The AT&T texting add on is 200 text/$4.99 a month or 400 text/$9.99 or Unlimited for $19.99.

I normally use just under 200 minutes per month so AT&T would be $18-$20 per month plus $4.99 for the texting. Lately I text just under 200 per month, but I have texted alot higher in the past).

I can purchase cards for the AT&T plan and a $15 card which expire in 30 days or $25 and higher options that expire in 90 days. If I spent $100 that would expire in 1 year.

So it boils down to, do I go with the chance of a average bill of $22-$25 per month with AT&T but possiblility of a HUGE bill. Or do I go with the garenteed $30 plan on straight talk because based on my usage I would have to triple my usual plan to use up my 1000 minutes. I figure I could save about $60 a year going with AT&T as long as I really really watch my usage.

Phones: I can get a free reburished phone for the straight talk plans, the minimum I pay for the AT&T plan phone is $14.99 and that is after some sort of mail in rebate.

I have a feeling I am going to go with Straight Talk. The reason that tilts me that way,... the free phone. Between the free phone and the fact that I am really close on the borderline for the texting and could see needing to pay the higher texting plan, so then Straight Talk would be cheaper

STOP....No I do not want MAY to come yet.

April 27th, 2011 at 08:46 am

Where did April go? I am not ready for May. In May I have 1 week of normal life then 3 weeks of Annual Training.

So if I blink it will be June. I then have just under 4 months left until my deployment when June starts.

Yesterday I was told the 2012 rates for my afterschool care will go up by $5 a month because of gasoline. Not that big of a deal. I just am getting cranky because of the 30 days written notice of cancelling the daycare.

I thought I prepaid for May back in August. I have to check my bank account IF I can go back that far because either I will not get charged anything. I will get charged $170 or get charged $165. And if I get charged $165 I am either getting charged twice for May or am getting under charged for September.

If it is a school year program why would they pull for Sept 2011 in May. Originally I thought it was just me since I was only going to be doing a few days in August and about a month in September. Last year they did not pull anything in May, the last pull was in April WHICH I was really looking forward to.

I am really glad when I am done with my deployment that my son will be old enough to ride the bus home or walk home and be home alone until I get done with work. I might even reinstall the house phone then, Between $30 for a cell phone and $30 for a house phone that is cheaper and less headaches than dealing with afterschool care.

New Plan - Change 12-13 or maybe it is 14?

April 26th, 2011 at 08:47 am

I have a fully funded Mortgage Account, I also have a fully funded Escrow Account.

My goal now is to have 3 months total bills in my Emergency Fund so I can transfer that into my checking on or near the 1st of September. I need $5662.80.

I also want to have 2 months in my Child Care Checkbook, this is $1283.80.

I need to set up the autofunding of the Child Care Checkbook, I need to have $641.90 going in monthly and to end once it reachs the 7702.80 balance not including the $44.44 balance. I am not sure how to do this, I am thinking maybe I will do half payments June-July-Aug-Sept then have it switch to full payments Oct thru July. The half payments I can handle because I will just transfer my Child Support into this account (which happens to be half and right now I don't include in the Child Support in my budget). Then Starting October I will not have Auto Gas, Cell Phone, Internet, and no drill daycare bills so that is actually really close to the other half.

I am currently short $3294.18 for the Emergency Fund. So I have 4 months to come up with this if I am going to have it prior to 1 Sept. That is $823.55 a month. How do I make this happen? I don't really have a plan for this yet. Any extra at the end of the month is going to go there BUT will it be enough.

I am Done!!!!!! Cost $1.87

April 26th, 2011 at 06:59 am

Well the good news is I am done with Flood Duty. Long Story of lots of last minute changes. But after all was said and done, My cousin only watched my child for 45 minutes, the rest of the time my son was with my BF.

I have drill this weekend and so when I pay her for drill I will just round up to the nearest $5 increment as long as it is atleast an increase of $2.

I got home on Saturday afternoon, so I was able to enjoy Easter with my son, BF, and our sweet fluffy doggy. It was nice. Also because I was home my BF got to go to my uncles house for Easter. I am not sure IF he would have gone if I had not come home since the only other of my family events he has gone to so far is Christmas.

I bought a protein powder shaker for my flood duty. It came in handy! I had carnation breakfast shakes in my pantry from when they were free at CVS, they come in a handy packet, so really easy to travel with just add water and it is a meal.

Love it, so spent $9 after tax on the bottle but I got $25 per day in food costs so my meal savings paid for it and today since my normal drink holders are not dishwasher safe, I could not make my normal frozen fruit blender protein shake breakfast and lunch so I am using it. I Really Really like it.

For food I spent:
$5.00 Two 6 inch 3 topping pizza corner pizzas with 2 12oz soda.
$2.50 Mini DQ Blizzard

$.75 Soda

$4.50 One 13 inch deluxe pizza corner pizza
$.50 Soda

$9 BlenderBottle
$22.25 if you include the blenderbottle.

What I should get back for food is $75 so I made a profit of $61.75
or $52.75 if you include the blenderbottle
or $50.88 if you include the daycare.

This will be the FIRST year I actually came out ahead after doing flood duty.

I should say I had planned on purchasing a blenderbottle for my deployment anyway, this flood duty just moved up my timeline. I was just going to buy one at Wal-Mart but when I went to buy it they no longer had them on the shelf. I checked everywhere they could have been, you know how some stores like to randomly place stuff near other stuff to try to upsell the total purchase.

I am glad now that they were out though, The one they had was about half the cost of this one, but it was not as good in quality. But at the time I just wanted the cheap one, now I am glad I got the one I did.

I was trying to spend as little out of pocket for food as possible but I did buy some food, The first time was my first day; I was so boried that the first opportunity that I got to get out of the work location and go relax with the other crew, I did.

The second meal purchase was on a day when the vehicle my bags were in got driven away so I did not have any of my belongings or food. So after about 9 hours since breakfast, I had to buy something or I was not going to make it until I could get back to my hotel room and cook my dinner.

Hope Everyone Had a Great Weekend!

Deployment Trial Run!

April 20th, 2011 at 09:07 am

Okay change 314, I was told I leave Friday for flood duty, then I was told I leave Thursday but inprocess Wednesday Night and would be driving my vehicle.

With the price of gas, the fact my ABS light is always lit, and we are not paid in and around mileage just from home of record to the Work location and then from the work loaction back to Home of Record; I really really do not want to drive.

The past few years it was nice to have my car so I could still have somewhat of a life instead of working my 12 hours then spending my 12 hours at the hotel but that was before I was saving all my money to get ready for the deployment. In 2009 I ended up having my car and did a little CVSing when I was not on shift (I worked the night 12 hour shift so this worked out).

Now I don't leave until Thursday, I am to meet another co-worker here at 2pm and we will be driving a GSA part-way where someone will then drive the GSA back here. We will then hop on a helicopter and fly into the work location.

I also talked to BF and he will be watching DS from Thurday evening until Sunday Morning so as of now my cousin will be watching my son for 109 hours so the cost has gone down to $272.50.

I am going to treat this as a deployment trail run. I will be staying at a hotel BUT I will only have what I bring with me (besides towels, bedding, etc). So this will be a chance to write down reminders of things I really need to make sure I pack. In the 5 weeks I was on flood duty in 2009, one thing I ended up going to the store for was facial moisterizer. My face was soooo dry it hurt.

I also will be going to Annual Training in May and will use that as a trail run also. It is hard to remember sometimes what you really really need to have when you are trying to pack as lightly as possible.

Sidenote, I never got that Cell Phone I ordered online so I will need to order it again. I never was sure if it took since I did not get a confirmation page. My phone transitions to AT&T on May 3rd so just incase my flood duty gets extended I will have to take both phones on flood duty with me. Tonight I will need to go down to the AT&T store at the mall and transfer my numbers. I got a call from the store at the mail suggesting I do that.

I also purchased a extra tall wide span gate (baby/pet gate). I have a 42 hallway that I want to block off, most non-wide gates expand to 41 or less. My dog keeps peeing on the carpet. So I want to block off the hallway so if she continues to pee on the carpet at least it will be limited to the area at the foot of the stairs. So less area will need to be cleaned. The gate was free ship to store, and it was a little under $52 after tax. I want to minimize the damage to the carpet until I get back from deployment and can level that hallway and then put lamentant back down.

I had been holding off on the gate because I could not find one in stores that was wide enough. Well today my sweet fluffy pee-ed on the carpet this morning after I brought her in since we were leaving for work and school. We do not have a fence yet so she has to come in during the day. She also left me two brown presents on the carpet area at the foot of the stairs. I moved the training pad from an area on the lamanet where it was laying unused and put it over the area she left my present and usually marks.

This mornings incident was why I had enough and went online and was able to find what I wanted. A little shopping around actually saved my a lot.

I am sure she wants to be left outside all day while we are gone, but because we don't have a fence she can't. I am sure that this is the reason she is showing her displeasure with the potty business.

Acted toooo soon

April 19th, 2011 at 07:22 am

A couple days ago I transfered money from my Daycare fund that was ear marked for flood duty. I moved it into my Emergency Fund since the river had crested and was on the down swing and I was told that as a deploying Soldier the deploying Soldiers would not be put on flood duty unless absolutely needed.

Well I report Friday Morning the 22nd. I will be back Saturday the 30th. I was suppose to have drill Friday the 29th through 1 May. So when I get back Saturday Morning I am going to have a lot of makeup drill activities to get done.

I will miss Easter (really sucks), but this is why I made sure I had the baskets ready to go for weeks. I need to find out if my autn and uncle are having Easter, and if so to show BF where their house is incase he is willing to go.

I called my BF and he will watch my son Friday thru Sunday. Sunday Evening he will drop my son off at my cousins (he works Monday at 7:00am). My Son will then stay at my cousins until I get back from flood duty or Sunday after drill is over (or whichever is later). He would have been able to start watching him again Thursday evening the 28th BUT he also has drill that weekend.

So I am looking at about $407.50 in flood daycare costs. On the good side at least I will not have to buy gas for my vehicle for that time frame so that is $40 saved.

Man I hope my NEW straight talk cell phone comes in today or tomorrow. I need it prior to Friday because it will really mess up my plans if ALTELL switches to AT&T while I am on flood duty and have to carry around two cell phones (I have read that the day of transition you might not have cell service on either phone for a 24 hour period). Also if I start service with AT&T I have one month to cancel, I do not have a contract with ALLTEL and want to cancel service before I have to even mess with AT&T.

I also need to call my EX, he was going to be in town Thursday the 28th to sign the family care plan before his drill. I will need to tell him that will have to wait and if he wants to see our son Sat evening 30th after drill for a few hours (his normal plan) then he will need to cordinate with My Cousin.

So much to do, at least by the time it comes to pay for the flood daycare I can pull it out of my paycheck from the 1st.

So stressed, I really really HATE Flooding. Why doesn't the city build a permanant dike.

Fridays Mussings

April 18th, 2011 at 11:19 am

On Friday as I was driving home I saw something that made me think.

I have been thinking about the purchase of an SUV. Of course I will not be purchasing it until I get home from deployment BUT I have been thinking about how I would do it.

I don't want to dip into my EF, So depending on how much extra money I have after deployment would depend on how I paid for the SUV.

I am thinking of a NEW SUV and the three I am most interested in are 22K-24K in price. I was thinking about a loan, I hate loans and like to pay them off early. I figured a loan this size would be $450-$500 a month. I was thinking of doing a loan because I do not want to use my EF, I would rather get a loan then just pay it off early. Instead of paying for it out of savings then if something comes up Wish I had gone with the loan.

Right now I only have 1k in my car repair or replacement account BUT I have a feeling this money is going to be moved into the Child Support Checkbook. So I will have no money for a new car.

So back to the drive home from work on Friday. In front of me is a SUV it is a 2003 SUV with 79,000 miles and it is for sale by owner I can't remember if it was $5,800 or $8,500. But both prices are less than the 22K-24K I was pondering. Now this SUV was not the make and model I was thinking of.

But maybe just maybe when I get home I might consider going used SUV in one of the makes and models I wanted. It would be much cheaper.

I really would like to buy a NEW SUV, because I bought my last car NEW and then drove it 12 years. The only reason I am getting a new vehicle is because I need better ground clearance because of where my house is located. So in my mind I am thinking new SUV at 22-24K driven for 12 years is 2k a year or about $165 per month. My current car was 13k lasted 12 years so an average monthly cost of $90. When I purchased my current car I was making an average of 12K a year, my current income is 56K. So in my mind the increase in average monthly payments seems in line.

Hopefully when the time comes to buy a new vehicle there will be a USED SUV in my prefered make and model so that I go that route. I hate spending money, so that will help in the battle of USED VS NEW. But I also like knowing that the vehicle has been properly cared for from day one....New wins out.

NEW Checking account

April 18th, 2011 at 08:59 am

I opened a checking account, it is a secondary checking account. IT will only be for writing checks to the EX-Husband, or if something comes up and my cousin is taking care of my son for that. (Long Story about a plan involving 12 months worth of post dated checks, and if my Ex decides to be a butthead or abuse my kind nature; he will regret it)

I could have gotten a 100 bonus for the account BUT since it was a secondary account I did not feel I could meet the requirements. (Direct Deposit- Would have to switch my pay to this checking and then transfer back to other checking account).

The other requirement was 3 debit transaction a month. If this was my primary account that would not be a problem. Well it would not be a problem until November.

So I decided to pass on the $100 bonus.

The reason I got a second checking account is because I am sure I will need to be paying my ex for expenses while I am gone and I do not want him to have my REAL checking account numbers.

Also, this account gives me FREE checks, well the non-duplicate checks are free. You pay for shipping if you want it to be trackable. So I got 200 checks for $5.56 shipping. If this was my main account I would want duplicates. But because it is a secondary account non-duplicates are fine. I am going to be making a copy of all checks I give my EX, so the duplicates is not that big of deal.

I should have the new two forms of the "family care plan" paperwork signed next weekend. My checks should be here the 25th. So if I have to write the checks at that time I get the paperwork so be it. I really don't want to give him the checks until August (so he does not loss them etc) but if that is what he needs as a olive branch so be it.

My plan is to have that account fully funded for all the post dated checks prior to the first check being drawn. My projected balance is 7702.80. I might have to borrow from all of my other savings accounts other than my Escrow and Mortgage that is. Talk about stealing from Peter to pay Paul.

slacking on the decluttering

April 18th, 2011 at 06:18 am

Last time I did a one item a day declutter it ended up being at least a few items a day thing.

Well this time I am slacking and actually I am managing to do one item a day, but alot of that is paperwork.

Yesterday, It was to go through my coupons and throw away the expired ones. I also went through all my magazines that had coupons in them and cut out the ones that are not expired and then sorted them into what I will use and what will go into the coupon train when I get it.

I did bring 2 sets of sheets, my second pair of running shoes and three toothbruches for my tough box.

I need to do much better, I think I would have done much better but Friday and all weekend it snowed. It is hard to want to spring clean when it is snowing outside.

Spent Money to save money.

April 15th, 2011 at 09:05 am

Today I spent $53 to save money.

I just got my NEW lower priced plan bill from alltel, I have the smallest plan and the $7.99 texting plan. Well after tax and FEEEEEEEEs the bill is $55.39 per month.

I went online and purchased a straight talk cell phone. I bought a refurbished one. The plan is 1000 min, text, and web for $30. At anytime I can also upgrade (it is prepaid) to UNLIMITED for $45 if I need it. I doubt I will but it is available and STILL cheaper than what I am paying now.

I got the refurbished phone and one month service for $50 with free shipping. So the plan is $30 and the phone (sort of like a blackberry) is $20. I also entered a coupon code I found online and will be getting a $20 resterant Gift Card FREE.

I want a full keyboard and that was why I finally bit the bullet. Prior to this the only refurb they had was a flip phone BUT the flip phone was free. When my son needs a phone I will be getting him the FREE refurb flip phone.

I had my eye on a full keyboard slider BUT they are $99.99 new and I don't want to pay that. I was actually going to just go and get the free flip phone the other day when I saw my bill and realized I would be saving $25 a month going prepaid. But when I got to there online store the blackberry type was there. WIN WIN.

I only paid $20 for the phone BUT with the resterant gift card technically it is free.

My only concern was I was having issues with my computer, it kept telling me it did not want to view unsecure data. So when I finally hit submit the screen did a bunch of thinking and then never gave me a confirmation or anything. I will check my email on Monday and my credit card bill. And if nothing shows up by Wednesday I will do it again, but on a different computer.

Really Upset with DS

April 14th, 2011 at 11:38 am

DS used to eat hot lunch and he used to eat breakfast at the school. $1.00 for breakfast and $1.50 for lunch. Well he started burning through his food money because he was going for seconds at breakfast.

The problem I have is that for $1.00 he is getting one 4oz juice and a slice of toast. He does not take and eat the cereal and milk because of his allergies. If he is still hungry he would go back for seconds, an additional slice of toast is $.75 and an additional juice is $.40.

Some mornings he was spending $2.90 because he would buy 3 pieces of cinamin sugared toast and two juices. Really, for that daily cost I can buy a whole loaf of bread and a gallon of juice. Thus feeding him for a week or more.

So fast forward to the first time I figured out what was happening to his money, I told him he was no longer allowed to eat breakfast at school. He had to eat breakfast at home.

He was still periodically eatting breakfast because He was burning thorough his lunch money fast, so I told DS he was no longer allowed to eat hot lunch. I would give him lunch money BUT I would tell him when he could eat hot lunch.

Well about a month ago I gave DS a check because he was out of lunch money. Embarrassment( At the time I was sure again that money was disapearing faster than it should, but I was not 100% sure. So I told him I was going to track the lunches.

I gave him enough money to pay the Debt he had on his account and enough money for 10 lunches. The reason I like him to have money at school is because if I am sick or life is crazy and I don't have time to make his lunch then he can have hot.

I made a chart and wrote down every day he ate hot lunch. Yesterday I get a call from my son at school. They have to call home before they are allowed to eat IF they do not have enough lunch money to pay in full. The message was on my cell phone because my phone died and I need to charge it. Anyway right before I go to pick him up from daycare I hear the message and I am fit to be tied. He had only eaten lunch 4 times since I gave him lunch money, so somehow his account got shorted $9.00.

Well guess what, DS told me why he was short. He has been eating breakfast AGAIN at school. He does not eat breakfast at home (says he is not hungry). I was not going to force him to eat, because I want him to have a healthy relationship with food... but in truth he does not want to stop playing to eat. So starting today I am going to make his breakfast and he is not going to have the option NOT to eat breakfast or tell me he is not hungry.

I have decided that I am not refilling his lunch account. I am done.

He has three lunch boxes (sometimes the school does not return them until the next day). I also have two more somewhere in the house, I will be locating them. I will prep all five bags with everything except the sandwich so that all that needs to be made is the sandwich and then I have NO reason for having him eat hot lunch.

He lunch is normally a capri sun "roaring water", a snack bag of gold fish crackers, a cup of applesauce or cup of fruit, a apple or orange and the sandwich. So really the lunches can be prepped ahead of time and all that needs to be added is the sandwich.

Not sure what else I can do about this. I really dislike the schools food system. What happened to the punch cards or the lunch tickets I had in elementary and high school? In my town, the school issues all the students a 7 digit number, when they eat lunch they type this number in twice.

How do you teach your child healthy spending when they are just punching a number into a machine.
I have told my son that every time he punches his number into that machine that is more money spent. But he does not get it.

The school does not post any food costs and it does not post that seconds cost MORE than the first go round. My co-worker had to bann his oldest from hot lunch because she would use her account to pay for her friends lunchs. She started taking leftovers to school, but instead of bringing the containers home she would throw them away. He did not realize she was tossing the dishes until he could not find any storage containers....He had tupperware, So in the end it was still expensive for him.

After I heard of this I stopped sending dishes with my son, instead the sandwich went in a sandwich bag. I was using containers so the sandwich would not get crushed and because it was cheaper to use dishes I already had then to buy sandwich bags BUT I guess I can see the above example playing out in my life if I don't take proactive measures.

Kids, Kids, Kids...How do you teach them finances when the world is set up as a charge, no cash system?

My daily declutter plan.

April 14th, 2011 at 07:01 am

Okay first I spent ALOT of money yesterday.

I purchased:
A blower/Vac for the yard 97.00
A large bag of Fertilizer with Crabgrass preventer 53.94
Garlic Bread $1.34 (reduced to quick sale)
Giant Pet Lint Roller 4.98

Total Spent $166.62

I tried to borrow a blower BUT no one I know has one, and since I still have a 7 foot high snow bank on half my boulivard I will need it more than once. Anyway it is one of those things I need every spring so it was time to just suck it up and buy it.

The Fertilizer is a need, it has to have crab grass preventer in it because that is my BIG yard issue. I also sprang for the Scotts brand because it is not suppose to burn the grass, and it is suppose to be timed release. BUT truthfully the main reason in addition to the above reasons, I spent a little more on the scotts over the generic was because the Scotts is suppose to be pet/child safe as soon as the dust settles where as the others NOT SO MUCH.

The declutter plan, I cleared a bunch of things out of my garage and put them on the sidewalk for spring cleanup week on friday. Wonder how much of it will be gone by the time I get home tonight? Anyway it took up alot of room in my garage. It was stuff I was going to put in my garage sale for super cheap. I just wanted a little money, but I decided not to have a yard sale.

It is amazing how mentally tough it is to see clutter and hold onto clutter in the hopes to make a few bucks. Yes I might have made a few bucks at a rummage sale, but with all the things that are out of my control in my life right now, I want the control of discarding those things and getting my garage to a point where I can start organizing it.

I want to have a yard sale but I just am not going to have the time (My days are pretty busy with extra training to prep for the deployment) Plus I want to spend time with my son, not spend time preping for a sale and hosting a sale, and I really want to start on the process of getting my garage user friendly. It was so functional until I moved that stuff into the garage so it was out of the way until the garage sale. But it seems like when I have a garage sale the garage and house gets MORE messy before it gets cleaner because I am moving stuff around to make shopping easier and in my case I am moving all flat surfaces (desks, end tables, coffee table, etc) to the garage to put stuff on because I don't have enough tables.

The stuff I put onto the curb was not good enough for the thrift store to be willing to pick up, and I am not going to store it in my garage for weeks in the hope someone sees the $5 ad and wants it. There are still three items in the garage, two items I will post online, the third I will be adding to the pile outside. I always put the stuff outside a few days before spring cleanup because once I do that it frees up space in my mind (mental to do list) and I start to remember other things that can go.

Anyway.....I have a plan. Starting Yesterday Everyday I want to declutter atleast one item. I have approx 160 days left until I deploy so that is 160 items I would declutter out of my house before I leave.

I will count items I throw away, and I will count things I donate. The things I throw away I get credit right away for, the things I donate I only get credit for them when they are recorded onto my donation spread sheet and placed neatly in a box to go to the drop off point. I will donate the stuff IF I have it recorded on the excell sheet. The big push is to get it on the excell sheet. Usually once I get about 3 or 4 boxes of stuff onto the spreadsheet I get in a hurry to donate it to clear the space.

If I am taking stuff to resale I do not get credit for it until I actually take it into the store. The reason for this is because I tend to sometimes put those things in my car and then it takes me a few days to actually take the things in.

I also have another thing, I have things at my home that are going to deploy with me, such as sheets etc. If it is a deployment item I get credit for getting it out of my house IF it is an item that is going into my tough box. And then I only get credit for it once it is in neatly packed into the tough box.

Yesterday I took some items into my favorite childrens resale shop. I made $10 then realized that they are still taking out of season stuff and so I took another bag of items in and got another $17. So Yesterday was a big day of decluttering.

Rummage Sale or Tax Deduction

April 13th, 2011 at 11:15 am

I want the money that a rummage sale can bring me, but then I think of the fact that if I donate stuff all I have to do is enter it all into the excell spreadsheet that I use for the donations and then drop them off.

We have spring clean up this week. I am actually put some things that I was planning on putting in the rummage sale out on the curb.

I am pondering a few more things. I am really really thinking I like the donation idea right now so I can get some space.

It is spring, the grass is starting to grow. Actually I should say the crab grass is starting to grow. SO I went to Wal-Mart, I purchased Scotts Fertilizer with Crab grass preventor. I also purchased a Blower/Vac. I needed this to blow the gravel off the grass in the boulivard.

I asked BF if any of his co-worker had a blower, they did not so, I purchased one. Now I have it for the annual spring cleanup.

I "want" a Kindle and a high quality sleep mask.

April 12th, 2011 at 11:18 am

I want a Kindle, I have been asking around on what are Must Have items to make a Deployment much more tolerable.

Most guys it seems take a video game system of some kind. I do not play video games. I read, and the girl whom I was asking about what is really nice to have said a nook or kindle.

She reads alot, LIKE ME!!! She said she ended up having people send her books, but then when it was time to come home she had to figure out how to bring them home. She said she and her mom and sister read the same types of books and they trade. Well she was not going to leave behind like $500 in books when it was her family that sent them to her to read, since they might want to read them now that she is done. She said next time she would get a nook.

I also read alot, she said they did have a library BUT the selection was limited. I can read a book a day or in two days so I could easily read through the entire library in a month or two and then what am I going to do with my boredom.

I want to purchase a Kindle, but for now I want to slowly work on downloading the free kindle books onto my laptop so that when I finally buy the kindle I have a collection to read.

I also am on the look out for a quality sleep mask, she said have two. One to wear if you send the other to the wash or if it is wet from being hand washed. She said that because of shift differences and the numbers of females we will being sharing a room with the sleep masks and earplugs are a must have.

I just don't know what to look for in a sleep mask because I have never worn one. I do know there have been times in my military career I have really wished for one, I guess no time like the present.

I would love it if my family would buy it for me, but if not maybe I will buy it with my rummage sale money. My Birthday and Christmas are three months after I deploy so that is why I say it would be really cool if I got it as a gift, if everyone who normally buys me a gift went in together. Or got me a Gift Card to Amazon so I could use the Gift Cards to pay part of it.

We will have to see.

No spend :0)

April 12th, 2011 at 07:45 am

I know, I know....I said I was not going to post No Spend days. BUT I am so proud! Yesterday, BF called to see if we had any empty spray bottles. I told him I was sure we did not have any.

He wanted a spray bottle to put soap and water in so he could wash his motorcycle. I asked him if he went to the store for the spray bottle could he pleaseeee pick up laundry soap.

So last night he bought a bottle of my prefered soap and I was able to wash my comforter and sheets for my deployment. I also washed my car. I normally run my car through the car wash during the winter (if we have any warm days where the doors will not freeze shut) usually this cost $10.

So I saved $3.50 on laundry soap, and $10 on a car wash.

Friday is our garbage day, it is also spring cleanup week. I will be getting rid of two old car seats, a bag of leftover roll insulation, 5 gallon bucket of leftover dried up sheetrock primer and a bucket of leftover cement waterproofer, and BF's futon and mattress. All these items were living in my garage. On Thursday Night they will be on the street for any scroungers to take to a new home or on Friday to be taken to the garbage site.

I am so looking forward to Rummage Sale Season. This Saturday I am going to a Rummage Sale at my Church. I am hoping to get that size 8 coat and Size 10 Snowpants for DS.

But Truthfully I am really really excited for June to roll around. I will have my rummage sale, then whatever is left of the clothing I will be donating to the thrift store. I have no problem storing a tote or two of small nick nacky things for my next rummage sale, but any of the bigger items that do not go are going to be either listed on the local free online site, donated or taken to the dump. I say dump because I have some older furniture (small box color tv), etc and I know that some thrift stores are REALLY REALLY picky on the furniture.

Really looking forward to the chance to declutter!!

Going to HAVE to buy laundry soap.

April 11th, 2011 at 07:24 am

Darn it, I just know I will end up stopping at the store tonight to buy laundry soap.

I am starting to get my head around stuff I am going to need for deployment. One of those things is sheets for my bed. Well luckily I have them already. See I got a twin bed after my mother passed away. On Black Friday I purchased two sheet sets and a comforter for that bed. I had some sheets from my mother but wanted the bed to look nice.

So those two sheet sets I bought and the comforter (well they will be packed in my tuff box). The thing is one set of sheets and the comforter have been on the bed and need to be washed. The other set of sheets are new-in-bag, so they also need to be washed to remove that NEW sheets itchiness.

Last night I did laundry, I used the last of my prefered laundry soap (ANY Brand of non-scented HE Soap). So I started using the Emergency Soap AKA Scented Non-HE (I have a HE washer).

The Emergency Laundry Soap is stuff we have for whatever reason but it is not HE or non-scented. I have Cheer liquid (I only use on my ACU's because it does not contain optical brightners), I purchased a huge bottle years ago and still have two small bottles. (I transfered it to smaller bottles later to take up less room). Then we have two bottles of scented non-HE Tide (BF purchased it before we met), plus I had two small bottles of cheap liquid laundry soup from when CVS gave them away for 50 cents on Black Friday. So yes I have LOTs of Laundry Soap, but I have allergies. So anything I wash to pack away for the deployment, I want to wash with unscented laundry soap so my allergies are not going crazy.

It will not be very expensive, I would just grab it when we go grociery shopping next. BUT I don't want to wait until the 22nd of April to get this done. When I want to do something I want to do it ASAP.

I guess there is a chance that BF will go to the store for a few grocieries before the 22nd so maybe I can wait it out. Maybe just Maybe I will be able to resist the urge to go the the store.

OH I also decided this year after I finish the rummage sale any leftover clothing will be going to the thrift store for the tax deduction. It seems like normally I sell about 75% of my non-clothing items and like 10% of the clothing items when I have a rummage sale so this year, after it is over the clothing items are going to be entered into my excell spreadsheet I have for donations and off they will go for tax deduction.

Weekend Spending, bills plan.

April 11th, 2011 at 06:42 am

This weekend was good. I only spent $10 on daycare, we were let out a little early Friday Night because of whatever reason the class/speaker we were having could not make it, so they cut friday night early, so that if we had to add the briefing in on Saturday or Sunday those days did not seem so long.

I am ALWAYS beat after a Friday-Saturday-Sunday drill. I spent the evenings of Saturday and Sunday falling asleep AKA taking naps.

On Friday I filled gas, $40.02. But Saturday and Sunday were no spend days.

This weekend we were issued our tough boxes. As far as I know this box will be going directly from here to the final deployment destination so I am thinking long and hard about what to put in it.

I am planning on just leaving it at work (it fits in my office) and slowly bring stuff to work to fill it. The box is too big for my car, so if I take it home I need to coordinate how to get it home then once it is filled coordinate how to get it back to work, SOOO it is staying here and I will fill it as I figure out what I can live without until I get to the final destination.

So far I have 9 months worth of SOME toliterys inside. I got the toliteries free or cheap when I used to CVS shop so I took then stuff out of the boxes and bags and put them into gallon zip lock bags (less air and extra waterproof layer). I have the space since I don't plan on bringing stuff like Video games etc.

I figure that 9 months is a good amount, that way I am not packing more than I will use but I am packing enough that I will not be spending money on that kind of stuff right from the beginning. If I do not already have the tolietry items at home (purchased free or cheap) I will make sure I have one of the item in my hygiene bag and a spare in one of my duffles (incase the one in my hygiene kit gets lost or stolen) and I will just buy what I need as I go.

This weekend we had our supply showdown, and our Admin Records Review. There is two new forms for the family care plan. Now to make sure I can explain to my Ex-husband the forms so he signs them without giving me much lip.

LES Statements are out!

April 8th, 2011 at 11:37 am

I got paid $140 more than I was expecting for my 8 days paycheck. :0)

But it was infact a 8 day paycheck! :0(

Living on the Emergency Fund! and Raid the Pantry/Freezer.

April 8th, 2011 at 08:43 am

Well today, I took proactive measures for the no paycheck period. I stopped most of my auto transfers.

I tried to figure out what my paycheck will be for 8 days. This is not exact as I am not sure how much they take out for taxes, but I have a ballpark. I claim Single 2 or 3, I don't remember exactly. I should probubly just claim tax exempt, but I am woried about something happenning and then owing big time.

Anyway back to the topic at hand,
I turned off the automatic payment from my checkbook (where paycheck goes) to my savings accounts that my mortgage, my Emergency Fund, and My Escrow Account are paid out of. Until I get my first paycheck following the govt restart I will not be funding these accounts they will be paying out without being replenished. Once I get paid I will figure out what should have been deposited and schedule 1 catchup payment and reset up my autopayments.

This means I need to pay my elec/gas, dental premium, cell phone, internet, and water/waste bill, PLUS gasoline for my car until I get a paycheck I figure this is $250 per month. I am also suppose to pre-pay the Sept daycare bill on May 1st.

I should have enough money to last 3 months of no pay without having to dip into Savings to start to pay the above bills as long as I do not have to buy grocieries.

I guess it is going to be a raid the pantry/freezer until the govt shutdown is over, event.

The good news is no paycheck will Force me to limit spending and so when I finally do get my paycheck and all that back pay, I should be able to hopefully knock out the savings goals with all the money I saved by cutting the spending from the beginning.

No More

April 8th, 2011 at 07:21 am

I decided not to post when I have a NSD. I will mention it in a later post but for now you will find out I had a NSD once I post a spend day.

Wednesday 6 April was a NSD. I went to the used book store looking for the books DS wanted. They did not have any instock, so I checked online. This is when I realized that the older books in the series are available in soft cover. So I am going to go to the local Barnes and Noble later this month with DS and look for the softcover. I figure if I can't get them used, the cheaper soft cover is the the way to go.

Thursday 7 April (Yesterday), I purchased DS a shirt. It cost $3.64 after tax. It was nice and soft and it was brown. DS had his first grade musical last night and he was an owl. He wanted to wear a brown shirt. Also he has NO shirts that do not have cartoon pictures on them besides his one dress shirt. I need to locate that dress shirt. If his dress shirt is to small this T-Shirt will be what he wears to my aunts on Easter. I also plan on having him wear this t-shirt in our family pictures when we finally get around to getting them taken. So $3.64 was a good price.

Today will not be a NSD. I was going to have my son spend the night at my grandmothers house and then after work tomorrow go pick him up and stay there for dinner and socializing. Well a little after Midnight I got a text message from my aunt and she says that will not work because my other aunt had to run my grandmother to the hospital. This really stinks because I keep meaning to get over to my grandmother but stuff always comes up. The way I scheduled that babysitting gig was with the purpose to make sure I spend Saturday evening at my grandmother.

So tonight I will drop my son off at the sitter at 5:15-5:30p and pick him up up at 10pm. He will not be spending the night. This means $12.50 out of the checkbook that I had not budgeted for the month. BF flys into town at 11pm so he can watch DS the rest of the weekend while I drill.

After work today, either before I pickup DS from school or after, I need to stop and get gas for my car. This is going to cost between $38-$40.

Post Spending:
$3.64 Clothing

Pending Spending:
Gas $38-$40
Daycare $12.50

Monthly Spending:
Diet Aids: $54
DS Allowance $5
BF Trip Cash $5
Groceries $19.60
Medicine $8.23
Deployment Expenses $11.00
Easter Baskets $64.20
Clothing $3.64


Extreme Couponing on TLC (My Thoughts and behaviors)

April 7th, 2011 at 07:37 am

I did not get to watch the show. I don't have cable tv and can't seem to find full episodes online. I really wish I could find them because TLC has some of my favorite shows. I watch Hoarders on Netflix. I also watched Drop Dead Diva before I cancelled Cable. I would love to see Season 2.

I saw some clips of Extreme Couponing on the TLC website. I really thought some of the clips did make it look like a case of hoarders.

One clip showed a lady that bought $75 worth of coupons from a coupon clipping service. She then purchased 9 carts of product worth $250 before coupons and after coupon and her store rewards card it was like $6.32. (In reality she got $250 worth of merchandise for $81.32).

I must say though my bathroom closet is packed from free CVS stuff. I think I have enough Toothpaste, Flossers, Mouthwash, and Buddies Bathbars to last me and my son a few years (but not enough to last 12 people their whole life).

I used to get FREE or Nearly Free Medicines from CVS. I would only purchase the stuff I used for my family. The sad thing is I noticed this year since it has been about 2 years since I CVS'ed that alot of my Medicines are now expired and I am having to toss out nearly New bottles. Yes it is better to have paid $.06 (tax on the ECB) and used the bottle once than to have paid $3.50 and used it once and tossed it out. BUT I look at those 500 deoderants on the show and think those have expiration date also. Yes I ignore them on mine because I don't really notice the difference BUT there probubly is a big difference if the deoderant is 50 years old.

I have not CVS shopped since they started taxing the whole order instead of just the amount above what the ExtraBucks covered, when you use ExtraBucks. The big thing that made me stop though was the ECB deals were getting few and far between; so you actually could not roll your ECBs as easily. At that point I realize that was more reduced cost than FREE and because I had a stockpile at home it was no longer a deal.

Since it has been 2 years since I stockpiled there are a few things that I am getting a bit low on. But I am thinking that I am going to wait until I get home from deployment to get back into the coupon game.

Right now I save here and there on coupons, I do belong to a coupon train but I do not hunt for certain coupons because 3 weeks from now CVS is going to have that item FREE with ECBs like I have in the past.

I do need to start the coupon GAME with Just Toliet Paper in mind though. I am paying way too much for toliet paper. I am buying the cheapest Toliet paper that I can get based on unit price (with coupon or not whatever is cheapest) as long as it is not Cottonelle or White Cloud. Those two brands cause rashes in our family.

My family goes through alot of toliet paper, Charmin is prefered but Scotts Extra Soft and Angel Soft are okay. But REAL toliet paper deals are few and far between.

I have only CVS, Target, Kmart, Wal-Mart and 3 different grociery store in the area where I live. By area I mean my town and the next nearest town. None of the stores have Loyalty cards or double coupons, so I doubt Extreme Couponing will have a person from my area on.

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