-New average: $54.44
Survey Money cashed: $10
April was a "Meh" month. An odd ball really. May will be better though.
Archive for April, 2009
A couple posts ago I mentioned that I tried to pay my credit card online by setting up the bill pay through the credit card website.
After a couple days of that not going through, I went to my checking account and set up that for online bill pay. I figured that the first payment I tried wouldn't go through because I hadn't set up my checking for online bill pay.
I was wrong.
Today a second payment of $78.95 went through and now I have a credit of $78.95.
I really need to learn patience- my CC bill isn't due until mid May and if I had just given the payment a few extra days to go through this would not have had happened.
It's not a big deal, more of an annoyance. I think it is a little funny too. I will probably end up using that credit soon because I will have to buy books for summer classes in the next week.
Today was a weird day.
I got to school a little yearly and talked to a couple friends while we were waiting for the class to begin. The subject turned to the Mexican Swine Flu. One girl thinks it is man-made and a result of bio-terrorism. She launched into a big conspiracy theory about it. I didn't pay much attention to the theory but I don't believe it. I think this will pass as long as everyone is cautious and washes their hands properly, etc.
So I went to the grocery store today. I spent a whopping $142! But I went to two stores- Walmart for everything but chicken and salmon and a second store for the chicken and salmon. The salmon cost $20! I wonder if I should start getting that at Walmart. The Walmart near me sells good produce and meats, but the salmon today didn't look great. The second store is a lot more expensive, but their seafood looked more reliable.
I learned a lesson today in reading the product label thoroughly. I wanted to buy avocado for sandwiches but didn't want to buy a whole avocado- I just wanted the inside (does that make sense?). So while looking in the produce section, I saw this container that said "Avocado" so I grabbed it. I got home and discovered that it is Avocado veggie dip. It tastes weird on sandwiches but really good on crackers. I guess I broke even.
I'm going to try a new recipe tonight. It is this: here. It looks easy to make, but I'm not sure how it will taste. But it is always good to try new things, right?
My online payment to my CC went through just fine. I'm glad I figured out online bill pay. It will become very useful.
My inventory was getting low on half.com so I went through my stuff and pulled out some old textbooks and books and movies I wanted to sell.
I listed everything but the last textbook I tried to list created a problem. Turns out the book I want to sell isn't listed on half.com. So I started to do a catalog request when I remembered something: I had already submitted a catalog request for this book a few months ago! That explains why I had never sold it- I was waiting for it to be "approved" by half.com.
If half.com doesn't approve the book within the next month, I might try to selling it to a few used book stores in town. I wish I could sell it to the university as this book is needed for a class everyone has to take, but I didn't buy it from the university. Maybe I should put up a flyer offering this book for really cheap.
I've seen a few others do this and would like to jump on the band wagon.
I created a page that will keep track of dinner ideas. I've always been a pretty good eater- I never ate a lot of junk or unhealthy food but I know there is room for improvement. So I'm hoping to be more accountable for what I eat. Plus, it will help me organize my grocery list.
I created the dinner ideas for next week. Each Saturday or Sunday I will add the dinner ideas for the following week (week for me begins on Monday). I will probably keep up the previous weeks' dinners.
I am only keeping track of dinners for a few reasons. One, breakfast usually is cereal or bagels and the three of us don't have breakfast at the same time. Two, lunch is also eaten at different times. My brother eats at school, I usually wait until after my classes to have lunch (usually a sandwich and a light snack), and my boyfriend brings lunch to school. None of us eats a large lunch so that accounts for a small portion of the food budget. We eat larger breakfasts and dinners.
try, try again.
I attempted to do online bill pay yesterday. I went to my CC website and put in my checking account number, how much I wanted to pay (full balance- $78), and set up the payment for today. I just checked and there was no payment made. It didn't even show a pending payment.
So I went over to my bank account (the checking account showed no pending payment either) and set up a payment for today for $78 to that CC. It says it will go through in two business days, on the 28th.
So we will wait and see. Worst case is that I send two payments of $78 resulting in a credit of $78.
My French class was cancelled today so my friend and I went to a juice place. First time I've been there. I got an "Oreo Speedway" and it was delicious! Wasn't the best drink to get on a cold day (really should have gone for the hot coco but next time!).
There is an odd smell in the house that I need to track down. I think my brother left some food in his room and forgot about it...
I hope everyone had a good "Earth Day"! Does hallmark make cards for this holiday? Who knows, Earth Day may become as commercialized as other holidays.
I finally remember to do what I needed to do at the bank but I have to go back tomorrow anyway. For something entirely different.
I just realized how close it is to finals! Finals begin May 8th and end May 11th. Eeek! It is getting down to the wire.
So my hours were changed on Saturday, but it worked out for the best because I'll be working longer on Saturday. Sunday my boyfriend and I are going to drive to the state capital. We keep on saying we will, but have always found an excuse not to. So we are going to do it this weekend as it might be one of the last weekends we have the chance to for a month.
I just realized it has been a few weeks since I've done a survey. Hmm.. I used to get a lot but now nothing. Oh well.
1. Call the bank and order more checks
2. Transfer $571 into my brother's savings (that is his SS benefit payment; the check was made out to my dad)
And I was even at the bank today... in fact I just got home from it. I made myself go to do the above but on the way I forgot and all I did was deposit the check I got from mysurvey.com. Argh.
I am going to call them right now. I hope nothing distracts me while I walk the 20 feet to the phone (and knowing me, something very well might).
My grandma just informed me that she owes me $85 from the deposit we got back on our apartment. She says she didn't give me the full amount when we got the deposit back and has been meaning to give me the money ever since but keeps forgetting. I honestly don't remember this but she's insisting and I'm not going to refuse $85 (not that I can refuse either- once she makes up her mind, that is it!).
I work tomorrow and Saturday. I'm glad that things are starting to pick up.
That I am depressed. Actually I'm pretty sure of it.
Yesterday was a terrible day. I had a fight with my boyfriend and I started it. I threw a fit over something minor. I was really upset about stuff that had happened earlier in the day and everything just accumulated and BOOM!
Yesterday wasn't the first time I got upset over something small. Lately I've been feeling unmotivated and really insecure and minor things have been upsetting me lately. I've been feeling lonely and haven't been wanting to go out.
So tomorrow I will be calling a psychiatrist.
Last night I had a terrible nightmare and SA was involved! I dreamed that I was talking to the SA forum while I was being chased by someone in a pickup truck. I've never had a dream before where I was being chased and this one was very scary! Boyfriend tried to wake me and I ended up screaming very loudly when he tried to touch me (still asleep at the time). Needless to say I didn't sleep well after that nightmare.
Boyfriend and I were planning on going on a day trip to the capital today but decided against it. Instead we plan on watching movies and playing chess in the park. Later we'll have to go to the gym as it has been several days since we've gone (almost a week unfortunately...). It'll be a frugal day today.
Tonight was my boss's b-day and I was invited to her house for her party.
Apparently one of my co-workers is an accountant and has started his own CPA firm. I was talking to him and he told me that next tax season, if I want, I can do some work for him! I would be helping his staff with tax returns. I fully intend to take him up on his offer next year. I'm very excited about this.
There's not much else to report on. Payday is the 20th but I won't be getting a paycheck. I created a list of stuff I need and want for my future apartment. I'm so excited about this! Life has been difficult the past few years but I feel like I'm over a major hurdle and it's starting to improve. I just hope that I'm not getting my hopes up too high.
I bought a small carpet cleaner today because I was tired of having small spots on the carpet. The carpet spray that we have isn't working well and I wanted to get rid of the spots.
I got a lot of the stains out, but I think I also created some stains when I accidently spilled the dirty water on the floor. And this is why they tell you to open it over a sink.
We had to take one of my kitties (the one who was in the dryer some posts back) to the vet today. She has been throwing up the past few weeks so I made an appointment to have her see the vet (actually, this throwing up is the reason I bought the carpet cleaner- she threw up today and the spray didn't get it all out). The vet did some blood tests and said one of her white blood cell counts was a little high. He thinks it might be an anti-inflammatory infection.. so he gave her a shot and told us to call in a week. Vet visit was $200 but well worth it.
Do you think cats need to be in a pet carrier when traveling short distances in the car? I don't have a pet carrier for my cats. The vet is a ten minute drive from my place and that's the farthest they go in the car. Both cats stay relatively still while in the car. They sit on the passenger seat (sometimes in the lap of my passenger) and meow at me. They don't like to move around the car. At the vet today, while waiting in the lobby, my cat sat in my lap and looked at the other animals. The vet staff didn't care that she wasn't in a carrier but one lady made a rather rude comment about it. My cat wasn't bothering anyone and wasn't climbing on the furniture. I guess I don't see what the big deal is.
I work on Sunday. It doesn't sound like it will be a long party though. I am crossing my fingers that next week is busier.
I tried a few new recipes last week. Most turned out pretty good but I didn't cook the salmon right the first time. Oh well. I'll try the recipe again in a couple weeks when I go through the rest of recipes I want to try.
The other week I bought a video game called "Wedding Designer" for the Nintendo DS. It is a really stupid game. I can't bring it back because I bought it new (I know, I know) so I will sell it on half.com. I hope I can get a good price for it.
I needed to remember to get something at the grocery store the next time I go. I knew that if I didn't write it down right then I would forget it. So in the 4 seconds it took me to turn to my left and get a pen and the grocery notebook, I forgot it!
I cannot remember it! And I can't even remember what triggered me to think of it too- normally that would help me re-think of it.
I can only hope that I will remember it before I go grocery shopping again or else I have a feeling this process will repeat itself many times...
On a different note... anyone wanna play "Guess when boyfriend will remember to mail his taxes?". He has finished his taxes and is getting a small refund (I think around $40) but only if he remembers to mail it. I have reminded him but he never seems to be able to grab that envelope and drop it off at the mailbox. If he doesn't bring it with him when he leaves for school tomorrow I will mail it for him.
I think I am going to rent a movie tomorrow. I'm not sure what, but I'll stop by RedBox and see what is available.
If the companies won't tell me?
I've been looking at prices for internet/cable/phone and am really confused. I don't want a lot of cable, just a simple package, but I need to bundle that with internet. However all I can find on the companies' websites are the introductory rates. Not the actual rate.
I talked to my dad again and he will definitely be moving here in August/September unless something huge happens (i.e. medical bill wipes out our savings, etc.). I know it is 4 months off but already I'm preparing for it. I'm getting excited!
My boyfriend and I have been going over apartments and we found several that are cheap. One is in an iffy neighborhood, but the rest are in good areas. One apartment is $565/month with all utilities included (they didn't specify internet, but that won't be more than $40/month). Another is $450/month with water and garbage paid.
My dad offered to give us $500/month to help us if we need it, but I'm not sure if we'll take it. We should be able to pay for everything with just our income. And my boyfriend has more in savings than I do. So we should be ok. But it is nice knowing I can ask my dad for help if something happens.
I hope everyone had a good Easter! Boyfriend and I went to a morning mass and then nothing. He had a test he needed to study for so I've been puttering around the house. Did some cleaning and then bought cupcakes for my friend that just moved into her apartment. A boring, yet peaceful, day.
Before my mom died I was sharing an apartment with my grandmother. The lease for the apartment was supposed to end this month. At this time, my boyfriend and I were going to get our own place.
Obviously that changed. After my mom's death I moved into my dad's place to help look after my younger brother. My dad's job is, unfortunately, in another state. He couldn't find a job in state that paid well (most were under $50,000/year and the job he has now is almost 3 times that). He comes home every 3 or 4 weeks.
The other day my dad announced that he might be coming home at the end of August/ first of September for awhile. He said if his job is not up by then he will quit and stay home for my brother's senior year of HS (brother is currently a junior).
At this time, I will be moving out.
I want to be excited, I really do, but I am a little hesitant.
I am worried about what would happen if my dad doesn't find a job at the end of the school year. He currently has almost a year's worth of expenses and will have more by the end of the summer. I think he is thinking of selling the condo when my brother graduates but I'm not sure.
I think it is more important that my dad be here. At some point money just isn't as important as family.
Soo... I am going to begin preparing for the chance that I do move out in August/September. I was planning on opening a 529 after I met my savings goal, but I think it is more important to add even more to my savings. I will open a 529, but I'll probably delay it by a couple months.
One of the upsides is that I don't have to worry about getting a lot of stuff for an apartment. I will need to get some sort of sofa or futon for the living room, but that's the biggest thing I have to get. I will scout thrift stores (we have some pretty good thrift stores here) when the time comes.
Sigh. I don't even know if this will happen for sure. It is a possibility, but not set in stone. We'll find out in a few months.
This month is the first time I would have received a payment from half.com to my new bank. According to half.com, they paid the deposit on 3/8 (yesterday) and it is not showing in my checking account.
At my old bank the money was in my account the same or next day that half.com showed they paid.
I double and tripled checked my account and routing number and it is correct. So I guess I just have to be patient and give it a few days. I just worry that for some reason I won't receive the money. Silly, yes, but I do tend to over worry.
For those who have half.com, how long do you wait for your payment? Like I said, at my old bank I received it almost instantly, but obviously it is different at different banks.
Last night I sat down with my computer, my DARS (Degree Audit Report), and a pen and paper and mapped out what classes I needed to take when. I pretty much planned what classes I will be taking for the rest of college. I'm going to run it by my advisor today just in case.
So after talking with my boyfriend and dad I am only going to take two classes this summer. They both think taking three classes and working will be too much stress and too costly. So the summer tuition bill dropped from $1,265.50 to $837! Still a lot of money, but more manageable. And it will be nice to not be in classes all summer long.
I found a few scholarships last night with an upcoming deadline (3-4 weeks away). Tonight I'm going to try to get started on them. Most do not require an essay (thank God!) but I just have to collect all the information for them. And luckily I can submit it electronically so I don't have to worry about mailing it.
This weekend at least. The rest of April is pretty much dead.
No work gives me a chance to relax and hang out with family, but that also means no pay. I picked up my paycheck today and it was for $83.66. And I doubt my next paycheck will be anything.
Summer school is going to be very costly. The tuition alone is $1,265! And that doesn't include books.
And fall tuition, after the school scholarships, is about $740 + books. At least I *think* that is how much it is. It could be less. I'm going to do extra searches for scholarships. Normally the school scholarships pretty much cover tuition so I don't need to do a lot of outside search for scholarships. But this time, I will. I'll begin looking tonight.
I'm a little mad at myself for not looking for scholarships for the summer. The school scholarships do not cover summer tuition and I should have prepared for that. If I am lucky I might be able to find a couple scholarships.
I am thinking that over the summer, instead of taking 3 classes, I will take two. This will drop the tuition to below $900 and I will not have to buy as many books. Unfortunately, this means that I will have to take this class over the fall semester and push one class to next spring. But if I take it during the fall, the scholarships will cover almost all of it. I think this might be the best choice but I will think about it for a couple days.
So with all this upcoming expenses I am not going to spend any of the money I am getting from the apartment complex for referring my friend. It will be saved and will most likely go towards books and tuition. As much as I would like to buy something for myself with it, I know I can't. It would be irresponsible to not put it towards tuition.
The financial talk at the expo wasn't what I expected. It wasn't very interesting for one. It was in Q&A form and most of the questions were basic (how to set up a budget, how much in savings do I need, etc.). It was good hearing a few different experts' opinion on everything. But I still wish they had talked about more in depth stuff.
But I got a lot of free samples at the expo. I walked away from the expo with a very heavy bag full free samples. Made the $10 entrance fee (for two) worth it.
While my boyfriend and I were watching a movie before he had to leave for work we heard an ice cream truck! The moment I heard it I immediately sat up and ran right to the window to see where it was. Boyfriend laughed and said I looked like a dog, running around trying to find the ice cream truck.
But it is an ice cream truck! I haven't seen one in years. We both got some ice cream for 75 cents each.
Tonight was unusually cheap for us. We have a couple date nights a month where we usually go out to dinner and then a movie, or a show, or something.
Tonight was date night and we decided to do something different. We made dinner at home (chicken and asparagus and a salad) and then rented a movie for free (some special program my boyfriend signed up for video games). We also went to the local park and played on the swing set and jungle gym.
We rented "Made of Honor" and after we watched that we watched "Blazing Saddles" (which we already had).
Sunday is technically payday but because it is a Sunday the paychecks will be available on Monday. I'm not expecting it to be more than $100.
Tomorrow and Sunday is the annual Women's Expo. I've never been so my boyfriend, friend, her mom, and myself will be going tomorrow. I'm looking forward to it. In the morning there will be a talk given on finances that I want to hear. So my boyfriend and I will be getting there a couple hours before my friend. I'll report tomorrow what the talk was on.
I have always hated cooking. Didn't like it one bit. But lately I've been forcing myself to try more recipes and I'm starting to like it more.
It helps that I've been getting better at it too. I especially like baking. So my cooking goal is to try at least one new dish a week. It can be an appetizer, salad, etc. Something. I'm currently looking at a couple cook books trying to decide what to try based on what we have. I don't mind having to buy a couple ingredients, but we have so much food supplies that I don't want to buy a lot more.
Today was a pretty good day. Boyfriend and I got a lot of de-cluttering done today. We took some things to the storage unit and did some cleaning. In the evening our friend that is moving into our complex with her boyfriend came by and we went to get cupcakes. Then we went to their new apartment.
I'll start with the April Fool's prank I experienced today:
I always pick up change when I see it on the ground. When I was walking across the parking lot today I saw a quarter on the ground. I bent to pick it up and it didn't budge! So I hit it with my shoe and still no budging. I looked closer and discovered that it had been glued to the ground! I thought that was really clever. I wonder how many other people tried to pick it up but couldn't.
Onto the $72. I bought a PO Box today! Yay! I got it for a whole year. I'm using the PO on the way to school so it will be convenient to pick up my mail.
I've already changed my mailing address with the school and with my bank. I will also need to change my mailing address on half.com. I'm trying to think of other places I need to change my mailing address for. The DMV is one.