The transmission on my Jeep went out and I had to shell out $2500 for a new one. Grrrr.... My first thought was I need to get rid of this heap but of course that is ridiculous since I won't be able to buy another reliable car for $2500 but still.....I hate spending money on anything automotive related, it seems like such a waste of money. Thank goodness, for the emergency fund but it is still infuriating.
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I've been fighting a flu-like virus for a little over a week now. I can't believe how long it has taken me to get back to normal but today is a good day!
Paid off the last bit of credit card ($1022)accumulated during grad school.
Added $600 to my savings. My plan is to increase my EF to 15K and then pay off my student loan.
Readjusted the payoff date on my student loan to a month sooner!
Cashed in $13.03 from my fatwallet cashback account-that will go straight to savings.
Next task: do my taxes. Ugh! That will be a chore plus we owe.
One of the things I like about this job is that although I'm a salaried employee, I get paid bi-weekly. At my last job for a university, I got paid once a month and at the job before that I got paid twice a month(fed. govt). So it's really great to have two paychecks a year that I don't have to pay a single bill out of. In my old life, I would have treated myself to something frivolous but I am through with that mindset and I am looking forward to using my upcoming "freebie" to seriously pay down my debt. Once that's gone, I'll dedicate it to my savings goals. I'm excited.
As my profile shows, I am a registered nurse and I have been for 17 years now. I thought I learned long ago to leave the office at home so to speak but lately I am struggling. A few years ago I went back and completed my master's degree and since then I have been working in clinical research in a public hospital. In this position, I have a lot more intimate contact with my patients than I did when I worked at the bedside. To make a long story short, these people are in constant need. Constant! They either don't have money for meds or food or rent or utilities or transportation. And the situation is always desperate.
I have to confess that as a general rule I detest helplessness and I have a real problem with people begging. But sometimes, life happens and it is not always the result of people who don't plan or work hard or whatever. Case in point, a couple I was working with today. They have always worked, they had savings but their adult daughter was diagnosed with cancer about a year ago and rapidly became debilitated. The mom took time off to take care of her as she was single and she died after only a few months. Before they could recover from that the husband became ill. She was fired from her job for taking too much time off(to take care of the sick ones). He lost his job due to his illness. Yes, it's illegal but this type of thing happens all the time to a certain type of worker. They have been living off of their savings but now their savings has run out and there is nothing to help them. Nothing. There is a popular perception that there is a lot of help for the poor and destitute but there isn't. At least not in GA. They were allowed food stamps but that won't pay their rent or their utilities or pay for meds. I called at least a dozen charities and agencies and the answer was the same: there's nothing left or they don't meet some narrow restrictions. And I don't have any answers for them. I'm just blown away.
People love to tell stories about seeing people on welfare driving cadillacs and buying steaks with their food stamps while dressed in designer clothes but that's bullsh!t. For every person you see like that, there are 100 more who don't know where their next meal is coming from or how much longer they are going to keep a roof over their heads.
Thanks for reading, I just had to vent.
A friend was teasing me about my hobby of chasing freebies and cashback. According to her, shopping through sites like Fatwallet and always paying with my credit card isn't really worth it. I disagree. I won't get rich doing this, it is a hobby after all but it's fun and more importantly, it's a way of spending my money that insures I am getting the best value for my dollar. I had applied this way of thinking 10 years ago, I wouldn't be in debt now and I'd be a lot wealthier. So for fun, I've decided to keep a running tally of money and items earned through cashback, surveys, fatwallet, trial offers, Mypoints, etc. It'll be under the About Me section. If I must say so, I don't think I've done so bad in the past 6 weeks!
I took a mini-vacation this week and instead of going out of town I decided to spend the week doing things in town with the kids, sort of being a local tourist so to speak.
Well last weekend, there was a sale at Restaurant.com $25 off for 5$ plus 25% cash back at Fatwallet. Great deal right? Wrong. For the first coupon, it was $25 off with $35 minimum purchase. Well for a family of 4 that should have been easy BUT for the extra conditions they put on the usage of the coupon. Long story short, I ended up spending $34 for a meal with the first coupon and $45 for the second meal! We never spend that much on eating out especially at the types of restaurants we went to in the past couple of days. This pretty much reaffirms my feelings on using coupons: they just cause you to spend more money! Genius on the part of the businesses but bad for the consumer.
Here are the latest numbers(last posted in March):
Student Loan: $10,774.56 down .86%
Credit Card: $8,894.73 down 5.3%
Auto Loan: $12,325.50 down 8.5%
Savings $2239 up 54%
Roth IRA $2,698.40 up 6.6%
Individual stocks $2,026.60 up 12.5%
403B $1753 up 40%
I really want to increase my cash savings. I'm pleased about the increase in my ROTH IRA since I am not currently contributing to it in favor of my 403B. I can't wait to flip-flop those numbers between the debt and the assets!
I've been thinking a lot lately about how I ended up almost 40 with a very meager savings and retirement. What amazes me is how quickly the years went by. I kept telling myself that I'll save once things settled down and I had the extra money to invest. That day has never come. When I graduated from college in 1991, I was in a good place with no kids and no debt. But over the next 10 years, I had a couple of kids and like a lot of women, I put my home first and worked either very part-time or not at all so I could be here for my family. I also fell into the monthly payment mentality, you know if you can make the monthly payments, you can afford it. Now the kids are older and I am working full-time again and I am realizing how behind I am. To make matters worse, my husband is a spender and he has over $30,000 in credit card debt! I can't tell you how angry that made me when I found out especially since he ran up this debt while he was working overtime! What in the @#$@#$ was he doing with his money? Geesh, well no more. I am on the road to financial peace of mind. Within the next couple of years, I plan to pay off my debts and build my emergency fund. Better than planning, I am actively making it happen. I of all people know that there are no guarantees in life and I have to be prepared.