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Portland, Hip Dislocation, and College

August 14th, 2017 at 02:36 pm

Lots of updates:

1) Portland vacation totals came in at $5,023 which is $977 under budget Smile We had a great time! Our youngest daughter has already started planning for next year's vacation which she is determined will be overseas somewhere. I have to start saving my pennies!

2) A couple of weeks ago, our oldest daughter went tubing on the lake with her friends. Long story short, she ended up with a dislocated hip of all things! The medics had to air lift her to the nearest trauma hospital. We had quite a scare but everything turned out as best as possible. She is fine now with no broken bones/tendons or any permanent damage. I was warned by the hospital that the bills will be hefty though... will update you guys as I get those.

3) I had to make our first college payment the other day and it hurt! Between tuition and room/board, we had to shell out about $12K for the Fall semester. Ouch.

6 Month Reselling Totals

July 6th, 2017 at 08:06 pm

So, I started into reselling as a side hustle on Jan 1 to save money for our daughter's upcoming college expenses (she starts college in August) Here are my 6 month totals.

Jan 1 - June 30, 2017

Total Gross Sales = $18,697
Total Costs/Expenses = $8,256
Total Net Profit (before taxes) = $10,441

I'm setting aside 25% ($2,610) in my mind to cover income taxes. I have no idea if this is anywhere near accurate as I've never done this before but figured it was a safe estimate... so my grand net total after estimated taxes is $7,831 for the first 6 months of my reselling part-time business.

Now, let me just say that this took a lot of time and effort to earn this money. It wasn't easy but I enjoyed it and I am quite happy with the results. From my research, the 4th quarter is always the most profitable with holiday sales thrown in the mix, so I'm looking forward to what the next 6 months will bring.

Our DD's estimated college expenses for one year is $25K which includes room/board as she'll be living on campus. If I can keep this up and earn about $15-$20K a year reselling, the rest can be made up with our regular savings (I put aside $500 from our regular income each month).

My goal is that our children will leave college with no debt whatsoever and that is why I am hustling hard Smile

Portland, Oregon

June 22nd, 2017 at 01:02 pm

So, we decided to venture out west this summer and visit Portland, Oregon. If anyone has any suggestions, tips, or advice about the area, please let me know! Our family of 4 (no little kids) would love to explore the area and maybe even take a drive to Seattle while we are out there. We'll be there the last 2 weeks of July Smile

Portland budget
flights and hotel = $3,000
rental car = $500
food, park tickets, and incidentals = $2,500
Total = $6,000




WE SOLD THE HOUSE!

February 21st, 2017 at 06:02 pm

We closed on the sale of our rental house today... finally!

For those not familiar with the situation, we purchased this house in 2006 and then tried to sell it in 2010 for the next two years. We finally decided to rent it out and found renters. These same renters stayed for over 4 years and they ended up buying the house from us today. We couldn't have asked for better renters or for a better outcome so we feel very fortunate and blessed. I am so looking forward to not having this mortgage on our books any longer Smile

P.S. We left the closing table with a $25k check but we did take a loss on the house overall. DH and I are so okay with the loss. The feeling of not having to worry about it any longer is priceless.

Saying bye to a great 2016 and hello to 2017

January 3rd, 2017 at 04:46 pm

Looking back to 2016:

Jan- Refinanced mortgage to a 15 year fixed and paid off remaining car loan balance of $17,210 to be debt free again except for the mortgage; DH had a medical scare

Feb- Had to pay the big and unexpected $1,145 hospital bill from last month

Mar- Joined gym which started $50 monthly bill; got into a multi-car accident over Spring Break; found out DD won a national $5k prom package contest!

Apr- Started vegan (vegetarian for the rest of the family) lifestyle; DH has to start getting a very *expensive* rabies treatment for trying to rescue our cat from a feral cat's death grip

May- major Prom festivities

June- kids wanted Spotify subscription and I caved... oh, well.

July- DH purchased a scooter for $1,500

Aug- DH sold the scooter he had just purchased last month... thank goodness! Smile

Sept- first "manual" payment made for home insurance since we refinanced without an escrow account for the first time ever

Oct- spent lots of money for college applications and other senior student expenses; DH purchases a "new" car for $8,100 cash; our renters inform us of their interest in purchasing our home!

Nov- ramped up online selling activity big time with ebay, poshmark, mercari, etc

Dec- holiday craziness with an 18th year old birthday thrown in the mix that led to an impromptu trip to NYC to celebrate 2016

..... now onward and upwards to 2017 .....

-I've opened up an official eBay store on Jan 1 with plans on making lots of part-time moola!
-Our rental property will be sold (crossing fingers)
-Our oldest will graduate high school and start college... yikes!
-Our youngest will get her driver's license... yikes, again!

I look forward to a great 2017 and hope for much financial success for all of us!!








Another big sale!

December 5th, 2016 at 05:33 pm

I purchased a $149 name brand, new with tags, ladies poncho sweater thing from Salvation Army a few months ago for $5. I listed it on eBay with a buy it now price of $100 and had several people offer me best offers on it but they were much too low and the interested buyers didn't want to accept my counter offers. I held out because I knew I had a lot of interest on it.

It sold last night for full asking price! After product and shipping costs and eBay fees, I made a $73.64 profit! Woo hoo! I can get used to making money while I sleep Smile

Dec 2 is a big day

December 2nd, 2016 at 05:09 pm

1. It's FRIDAY. Enough said.

2. My oldest daughter turns 18 today. How can that be?!!

3. We have officially entered into a purchase contract with our renters for the house they've been renting these past 4.5 years! We agreed to a $255k price. I sure hope their financing goes through fine and we can close in January! We purchased the house in 2006 for $288k so yes, we are selling at a loss but that's OK. We'll pocket about $25k after the mortgage is paid off and most importantly, we will finally be done with that house so cross your fingers for us!

4. Our youngest daughter just finished with drivers ed yesterday and can now go get her permit. I'm cool with that. Haha.

5. I've been tracking my online sales accounts in detail since Nov 6. As of today, Dec. 2, my net PROFIT made is $725.94. This is after all fees, shipping costs, and product costs. I can get used to an extra $700 a month and hope this amount can be sustained. I plan to make this much more consistent into 2017.

Best ebay flip ever... or at least for me!

November 16th, 2016 at 04:17 pm

I went to a charity auction last night and purchased a brand new with tags, Dooney & Bourke matching wallet and handbag set for just $55. Got home and I broke the set apart and listed the handbag and wallet separately on eBay.

Within an hour, the handbag sold for $215! If I say the $55 cost was on the handbag alone, after fees and shipping, my net profit is $117.49! Once I sell the wallet too, my net profit on this one $55 purchase will be even greater.

Anyway, I've been on and off ebay since 2000 but just ramped up my ebay activity over the last week and trying to make some money with that platform. I've made quite a few sales but nothing like this one in such a short time frame so I had to share Smile

Happy hustling!

Some random financial updates

October 6th, 2016 at 08:15 pm

-- Our renters want to meet sometime soon to discuss possibly purchasing the house! Let's cross our fingers...they've rented the house since Aug 2012 and have been great renters but we would love to sell it to them instead.

-- I am to get a one-time $400 bonus this month. Woo Hoo! I wish it were more but I'll take it and will put it into our savings.

-- Hubby is itching to purchase a "new" car. He currently drives a very beat-up 1998 truck. We've agreed to stay in the $5k-$8k range if possible and will pay cash for it.

-- Just a quick financial snapshot of where we are right now.

Debts
*House mortgage = $273,486 (15 yr fixed @ 3.375%)
*Rental mortgage = $228,018 (ARM @ 4.75%)

Cash
*Retirement accounts = $106,778 (not including pension accounts)
*Mutual Fund savings = $9,585
*Bank account savings = $16,703

Other Assets
*Main house is worth about $450k
*Rental house is worth about $275k
*Our 3 cars are worth about $30k total

Definitely not where I want to be in regards to cash, but we are in a much better place right now than ever before. Slow and steady wins the race, right? We've made so many mistakes and have learned a lot so I'm not downgrading where we are right now. Our cash balance may not be as high as some of yours, but it's moving in the right direction for us.

Vegan meal pics

June 21st, 2016 at 02:54 pm

Some meals lately...


Vegan bagels with peanut butter, bananas, and chia seeds. My favorite right now!


Simple penne pasta with spinach and marinara sauce. The family really liked this one.


Can't go wrong with fresh fruit!


Asian noodles with a variety of veggies... Simple!


These ingredients went into the making of Spring Rolls!

My big yard sale total....

June 21st, 2016 at 02:43 pm

So, we had a yard sale on Saturday like many of you did, it looks like Smile

We spent all day Friday pulling things out of closets, organizing, and pricing. Our sale ran on Saturday from 8am - 1pm.

We made $760!

Most items were really marked as $0.25, $0.50, or $1. Our most expensive item that we sold was just $25! So, yeah, we had a ton of stuff.

We received a lot of feedback from our customers throughout the day so I thought I would share the info as to how we had a successful yard sale.

1) We advertised on local facebook selling pages and on craigslist.

2) We put up very simple directional signs the evening before.

3) Location is key. We live in a great area to hold yard sales (great neighborhood, easy road access, lots of parking, etc).

4) We priced everything! Nothing was less than a quarter. Prices were easily visible on each item.

5) We priced everything at yard sale prices! Very important here... I even mentioned this in the ads that I placed because NO ONE wants to pay mall prices at a yard sale.

6) Know the goal of having the yard sale in the first place. Ours was to get rid of stuff in the house... not to make a ton of money for a summer vacation or anything like that. Because our goal was to get rid of stuff, we priced things low and accepted even lower offers... and because of #5 above, we had very little negotiations that we had to do on pricing. 90% of our customers paid the price we asked without any hesitation.

7) Our stuff was clean! Not dusty, not broken, not haphazardly thrown in boxes for customers to dig through. We displayed things on tables not on the ground.

8) Many, many of our customers told us how we had the best yard sale they had been to in years.

Hope that helps, guys. We really didn't have a figure in mind so when we counted at the end and had exactly $760 in our hands, we were ecstatic! This is only the second yard sale we've had and honestly, we didn't have anything but knick knacks at this one (the first one was 4 years ago where we netted $1200 because we had lots of furniture). It's amazing how a lot of quarter items can add up Smile

Feeling grateful

May 6th, 2016 at 05:15 pm

So, I just gave away a dining table with 4 chairs to a coworker... and I feel good about it.

Life isn't just about making money at every turn. Sometimes you have to give back to the universe. My coworker is a secretary making about $25k a year. She supports herself and her elderly mother. They just rented a trailer and are moving in this weekend. I asked if she might need anything and to my surprise, she needs everything. Apparently, the small apartment they were living in had no furniture to speak of at all. Besides the beds, that was about all they had.

How could I not have realized this about a coworker? I knew she has tons of medical issues (we've had to call 911 before when she had a seizure at work)... but you know what, she's never complained. She's always positive and friendly and is always here for others.

But back to the table... my mother had found this table set at Goodwill and paid $35 for it. She bought it to resale on Craigslist. We had listed it for $50 but no bites... so I just said to my coworker that it was now hers. I will pay my mom the $50 for it. My coworker offered to pay for it but honestly, how can I take money from someone that has so little to begin with? I am always searching for ways to earn more snowflakes-- I sell on ebay and other online platforms all the freakin' time Smile but sometimes giving is just better than receiving.

So, yes, I am feeling grateful for all that we have. DH and I have great paying jobs, we have nice things, we have good health.

I'm not posting this to brag or anything but to remind ourselves that sometimes it is good to just give out of kindness to others without expecting anything back in return.

Earth Day 2016

April 22nd, 2016 at 04:51 pm

Go watch Cowspiracy... today! Let's honor our beautiful planet by becoming more aware of how we are literally killing her each and every day Frown

A win, fitness, and food thoughts

April 20th, 2016 at 01:36 pm

So, Murphy left our house and we finally got some great news.... my oldest daughter entered into a national magazine's giveaway/sweepstakes last month and she was chosen as the winner!! It a package value worth about $5k. I won't say what it is just yet as it won't come to fruition for another month but once we get it all, I'll let you guys know. Let's just say that any teenage girl would be tickled to have won this...

In other news, my DH bought us fitbits (he sold some stuff to purchase them so they didn't hit our budget because I told him we didn't need them). I am actually quite happy with this little gadget. I am a tracker by nature so keeping up with my activity levels all day has been great. We've gone to the gym very regularly, I'm pleased to report, so our new $50/month has been definitely worth it.

For the past 2 weeks, DH and I have decided to go vegan. We have never eaten a ton of meat but dairy/cheese products have always been in our diet. We decided to go all vegan and plant based and so far so good. It's actually been pretty easy. Our kids have asked us to allow them to try vegetarianism instead and we are happy to let them try that instead (they love cheese pizza haha). Anyway, we are attending a local vegan potluck meetup today and looking forward to meeting other like-minded folks. I know it's not for everyone but we have been enjoying this journey so far.

Spring Break... so needed!

March 23rd, 2016 at 02:12 pm

A big perk of DH and I working within our school system is that we get time off that coincides with our kids' school schedules. Our Spring Break is next week and I cannot wait! I have been in the thick of budget season and need some decompression time. We haven't made any plans to go anywhere though. We want to go somewhere but just can't decide on what to do. Sometimes being spontaneous is just what we end up being and it all works out Smile

In a previous post, I had mentioned we would be joining a gym. Well, we did but on a different program than what I thought. So, the cost is $50/month for both DH and I to go to any handful of gyms in the area. We've been doing great so far and really enjoy getting out there and working out. DH has lost about 10 lbs just by cutting out sodas and working out. I've lost nothing but am feeling pretty good... I think I haven't lost any weight because I'm gaining muscle mass (I would've described myself as fluffy). Toning up is high on my priority list so I think I'm heading in the right direction.

On the financial front, we've operated on a very exact budget since Jan. 3 months in, I can say that it has been a game changer. I know some folks don't care for keeping up with every little detail but I would recommend it for everyone at least just once... a very eye-opening and realistic look. I love being able to know exactly where we stand with our budget each and every day.

Our goals lately are to save as much money as possible toward 2 things: 1) We have a kid going to college next year. 2) We have another kid driving next year. Both are big expenses and I just hope that we will be prepared enough.



Old Navy... sigh

February 10th, 2016 at 02:37 pm

So, I got an Old Navy credit card a while ago. I've only used it when there are special promos... During the month of January, they ran a promo that basically got me a free $20 to spend there. That plus what I already had in credits from prior promos that has been carrying over has put me to a credit balance of $65 to spend at Old Navy. I also have a $40 off $100 purchase coupon (SuperCash as they call it) that expires today. Basically, this means that if I can find $100 in items today, I could use the $40 SuperCash and $60 worth of my credits to get the entire order for free. Sounds great, right? So, why is it so hard to find anything?! I don't want to just waste the "money" so I only want to get things we need/want but there just isn't anything appealing for any of us. #beingfrugalandcheapproblems

2015 Taxes done

February 8th, 2016 at 08:25 pm

Have to pay federal => $75
Getting a refund from state => $40

Net effect => $35 to pay

Not too shabby.

Payday! February 2016 Budget Prep

January 29th, 2016 at 02:37 pm

I could not wait for today! It's so much fun to play around with our budget and to plug in actual numbers when we get paid. Since both DH and I get paid at the end of each month, today's paychecks have now funded our Feb budget.

Because our refinance in Jan caused us not to have a mortgage payment due in Feb, we are able to push that payment into our savings account this month Smile

I still have a buffer of $1200 that I need to find a "home" for. I like to keep a buffer for those unknown but expected expenses that will pop up during the month. For Feb, this will be for some medical bills that should be arriving anytime now (DH spent a week in the hospital in Jan). I have no idea how much of the $1200 will be needed for this or if I might need even more so we'll see. But, this works for now because I do mess with our budget everyday... always entering in adjustments and actual numbers. I guess it's just fun for me lol.

Hope everyone had a great fiscally fit January. I know we did in our household... I am looking forward to February 2016!

$105 Family Fitness monthly fee

January 27th, 2016 at 06:54 pm

So, hubby and I know that we need to exercise. He was told by his doctor at the beginning of January that he is borderline diabetic if he isn't careful. He was addicted to Mt. Dew and sugary sweets and for the past month, he's done very well and has stayed away from the sodas. We've always known that diabetes would be a concern for him since he has a family history of it but it took the doctor finally telling him this before he would "believe" it... he also needs to participate in cardio workouts daily. Hubby is by no means obese but he is about 20 lbs overweight. We have a treadmill and lots of various exercise dvds BUT we have come to the realization that we must get out of the house with a structured routine. Some people can just work out at home.... We don't think we are those people.

So, after a bit of research, the option we are leaning toward is joining a club that is about a mile away from our house. It offers the typical gym environment with the machines, etc.... but what we are looking forward to are the classes that are offered. Yoga, Pilates, Boot Camp, etc. The classes are offered at 5:30 daily so we can go after work (we WILL NOT get up early in the morning to workout). And, then there is a 10:00 class on Saturdays that we will attend as well. For a family membership, it will cost $105 a month. That will allow all 4 of us to use the gym at any time and take advantage of all the classes that they offer.

We've never joined a gym before as we always thought we could take care of things at home on the treadmill or using our dvds. We've not stuck with it nor have been consistent. There are just too many distractions at home (i.e. the couch and tv).

So, we think we'll sign up starting Feb 1 and just incorporate the $105 monthly fee into our monthly budget. My allowance was $100 a month and if nothing else, I'll just use that money toward this now... as I am embracing minimalism anyway and not in the mood to purchase anything at all.

January 2016 - Awesome month!!

January 26th, 2016 at 02:47 pm

Hey, guys. So, I've done a ton of work on the financial front this month.

Since Christmas, I have been on a minimalist kick. I've cleaned out drawers, cupboards, closets, and more. Bags and bags and more bags of clutter have been donated to Goodwill. No more frivolous shopping in this household.

And, I've also cleaned up our finances at the same time Smile In Dave Ramsey style......... WE ARE DEBT FREE except for the mortgage! The only debt we had was our car loan but I finally decided to pay that sucker off with our savings. We also refinanced our mortgage from an ARM to a 15 year fixed in January! The goal for us now is to save, save, save. We need to build back up our savings and to set aside funds for the upcoming college expenses (our oldest will be starting college in 2017).

So, January 2016 has been a busy month but a very fulfilling month. I have worked hard to rid our home of any clutter (physically and fiscally) and it feels awesome.

Wells Fargo stock

October 28th, 2015 at 03:52 pm

So, years and years ago, I worked for Wachovia Bank (which is now Wells Fargo). I forgot that I had bought a couple of shares at the time...

I just checked my account and I have a whopping 2.356 shares of Wells Fargo common stock! Woo Hoo! At the current market value of $54.61 / share, that means I have $128.66 Smile

So, what should I do with this newly discovered information? Should I just leave my measly 2 shares alone or should I cash it in?

Any stock people out there to help a girl out?

Documenting random thoughts today

September 22nd, 2015 at 04:31 pm

Thinking ahead to some big expenses forthcoming:

DD #1 will be going off to college in 2 years
DD #2 will be getting her drivers license in 2 years

Ugh.

Renters are still in our house and have asked to stay there through 2016. They really need to just buy the darn place Smile

Financially, we are staying steady but I would love to push ahead somehow. I need to inherit some money from an unknown relative somewhere haha.

I have been selling a lot of clothing/accessories on instagram, poshmark, and mercari... haven't put too many things on ebay because the other platforms seem much easier.

Wish we would finish up renovating our house. But on the other hand, don't really have the extra funds to do so. Oh well.

Been walking on the treadmill daily for at least an hour at usually 3mph. Hoping to get rid of 15 lbs but doubt that will happen anytime soon.

So, lots of randomness around here lately.

Teaching at a University?

June 8th, 2015 at 02:06 pm

So, I have been at my current job for over 9 years now. I am the CFO in our county public schools. I make a really, really good salary that I have quite honestly earned throughout the years. I have been content until recently so I started looking elsewhere. However, my options are quite limited because I need to stay within our state retirement system... this means that unless I plan on moving, which I do not, the only real option for me is to look at the local university here. So, I've been looking each week at their job postings. I sent in my resume a couple of weeks ago for a position teaching undergraduate business courses. I have been contacted that I am a serious candidate for them and they were going forward in checking my references. It would be a great opportunity and change for me... however, I am quite hesitant because of the salary difference. This teaching job would pay about $40k less than what I am currently making! I doubt I will take the job just because of this detail alone but it is still something I want to consider... any advice from anyone out there that may be teaching at the university level? Pros/cons?

Weekend update

June 8th, 2015 at 01:19 pm

** We picked up our check from the consignment sale... our final total was $349.80 which was awesome!

** My DD has been asking for a piano/keyboard for over a year now but we've been telling her that they are just too expensive. I went to a yard sale on Saturday and I'm so glad I did. The fellow had the nicest keyboard for sale! It is one of those really nice grand piano "dupes" that sits on a stand and has a bench and was hardly used at all. They retail for around $800 and I was able to talk him down from $250 to $200. My DH and I set it up in the house for DD and surprised her with it. I've never seen her more happy. She loves it!

** We are still figuring out details on our upcoming Hawaii trip. It's so exciting. Living on the east coast, this is a huge trip for us since it's so far away. I'm heading to the library today to see if they have any travel books on Hawaii...

Going to Hawaii in July!

June 4th, 2015 at 08:21 pm

So, I thought we would piggy back a family vacation with my conference in San Francisco... but we took it a step further and we are going all the way to Hawaii! We have already made the flight and hotel reservations. Now, we just need to look at what to do while there. We are going to be on Oahu. Visiting Pearl Harbor is a no brainer but what else do you guys recommend? We'll have our teenagers with us as well as my parents so we need to keep everyone happy. Suggestions on what we should do to ensure a great trip? This is a huge trip for us and a major expense so we want to make the most of it.

I said NO and it hurts so bad

March 25th, 2015 at 08:10 pm

(This is a post that only purse lovers would understand)

So, Kate Spade sends me an email this morning about a purse that is $100 off today only. I looked, coveted, and drooled all day long.... but I have finally decided to just say NO because it's the right thing to do. I certainly love this bag but I certainly don't need it nor do I have an extra $200 to spend on it either. But, gosh darnit, I can't stop thinking about it.

As luck would have it though, I just sold one of my brand new Dooney and Bourke handbags that I bought for a steal (around $90) and got $160 for it which means a profit of $70. I've tried and tried to sell it over the course of the past year or so with no luck until today... the day that Kate Spade tempts me so. But, I'm holding strong and will save that $160 inflow of cash instead of spending it and then some on a new Kate bag.

The right decision is sometimes (always) the hardest decision.

$11,743.17 is such a pretty number

March 16th, 2015 at 06:45 pm

This is the balance in our short term savings account right now. I know many of you have lots more than that but this is an accomplishment for us. I realize that this number may fluctuate as we need to use it for short term expenses (like annual car insurance bills, etc) but I am enjoying just looking at it today and my goal is to keep adding to it as much as possible.

Easy money in my closet

March 12th, 2015 at 06:59 pm

I returned some clothing to Old Navy today. I had purchased them using their "Super Cash" promo just to purchase them... nothing I needed at all. So, I finally just took them all back and now I have my $82.99 back in my wallet instead of a bunch of clothes I didn't need to begin with. Feels good.

We are at $540 in sales with the consignment sale which means $324 for moi. Loving it, but we are nearing the end of the sale which means that I won't get too much more, I doubt, but we'll see.

It's been over a year!

March 9th, 2015 at 01:37 pm

So, I'm finally back. I didn't realize that my last entry was over a year ago but it's time to get focused again on our finances. I won't go into detail as to what our goings on have been this past year but instead put down our thoughts and goals for the present:

1) Savings:
We currently save $1200 from our paychecks each month. $250 has been going into ROTH accounts. $150 has been going into a long-term (LT)savings account. $800 has been set aside for short-term (ST) savings each month.

We currently have just $2,500 in our LT savings (a mutual fund account)

We currently have $7,600 in our ST account and I have $3,000 in cash at home that I have been socking away anytime we get extra cash. I will be depositing that $3,000 into our ST account today so our balance will now be $10,600. There have been times where we need to tap into this account for annual bills like life insurance and such so this balance will fluctuate but that's what it is for.


2) Debt:
Our debt load currently looks like this-
Mortgage loan 1 balance $238,515 (renting this one out)
Mortgage loan 2 balance $287,955 (our home)
Car loan 1 balance $13,168 1.95% (purchased Jan 2014)
Car loan 2 balance $21,645 3.59% (purchased Jan 2015)
Yes, I know these are scary numbers.
No unsecured debt.

My conundrum is whether or not to stop putting away any or all of the $150 LT and $800 ST and instead divert those funds into paying off one our car loans. We have been paying more than the minimum each month but adding more to one of them would snowball it quickly. What do you all think?

An overdue update

April 23rd, 2013 at 09:00 pm

--- I was "offered" a job in a county 2 hours away for about $30k more than what I am making now. I wasn't looking or applying anywhere but the person there is retiring and recommended me as her replacement. After weighing out everything, I declined the offer. Believe me, I was very humbled to be considered but we have just too much going on here so the timing just isn't right.

--- Renters have renewed for another year so at least we don't have to worry about that house for a while longer. I think we lucked out quite a bit with this as there are so many horror stories about bad renters. This is a nice little family and they love our house so they have taken very good care of it. {{Too bad their rent payment is $360 short of paying our mortgage that we have on it, but it's better than nothing}}

--- Work has been complete chaos these past few months. Our superintendent was bought out of his contract to a tune of nearly $200k and we are now without a boss for who knows how long.

--- Slowly still making progress at the "short sale" house. We love living there but geez, it's taking a long time to fix it up. With the nicer weather these days, we have done much work outside amping up the landscaping. Plus side is that we get a nice workout while we are at it. Smile

--- Drove by an apt complex last Sat and sitting right by the dumpster was something that caught my eye. I pulled over and tried to piece it together... turns out to be a toddler bed in the shape of a Volkswagen Beetle and it was in great condition. My parents are going to yard sale it off for around $30. Oh, and there was also a stepper machine that was just sitting there... in great shape too. Probably will sell that for around $20. Woo hoo for dumpster diving!

--- Upcoming local consignment sale next month that I will participate in. This is held twice a year and is a good way to clean out our closets without holding a yard sale. So, I've been looking for just about anything that can go toward that sale. The only bad thing is that they charge 40% of the sale --- yikes, but again, better than nothing. This is a huge deal where I live and tons of people shop this thing so it really is a good way to get rid of stuff.

--- Family is on a spending hiatus starting today. Besides stuff we need to get to keep our home improvements running along, we are not allowed to buy any "fun" stuff like clothes or dvds. I hope we can last a while because we are running low on cash as it is!

--- Family beach trip coming up in July so I am also starting an exercise plan tonight (Jillian Michaels, here I come). Wish me luck.


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