I’m not Jeff – who the heck is Jeff?

I have had my cell phone number for 14 months now, since we got our first iPhones in July 2007.  Almost immediately after we activated our phones, I started getting phone calls for some guy named Jeff.

Read the rest of this entry »

Saving money for Christmas

I think I have figured out how I am going to save money for Christmas.

Since my husband and I decided to start cooking at home a lot more often, and cut back on the dining out, and allocate $100 week for each of us for breakfast & lunch while at work, I determined that if I spend carefully, anything left over from that day’s $20 can be stashed away and go toward my Christmas fund.

I think he is going to use any leftover of his weekly lunch money to have a more pricey meal at the end of the week if he feels like it, since he is awaiting $100/mo from a friend of the family from the sale of his iMac, and will be getting $300 before Christmas in that manner – he’ll have THAT money for holiday spending.

Since I will not have the same luxury, I am going to save up my leftover lunch money, and so far it looks like I’ll have quite a stash of cash on hand by the time Christmas rolls around.

For example:  today, I bought two 20oz Pepsi’s which were on sale for 2 for $2.22, at the convenience store this morning.  And for lunch, I spent $9.00 on a burrito bol, chips & guacamole at Chipotle. (yum!!)  So I have a little over $8 left for today.  If I spend no more than that each day, after five days I will have $40.  In four weeks I would have $160, in two months I would have $320 – already $20 more than my husband is getting.  And another four weeks – which would put me about a week and a half before Christmas – would be a grand total of $480.  That’s not a bad amount for Christmas shopping, especially if I am conservative about what I get people like I was last year…

With the exception of two people (well, four if you count my husband and daughter), everyone else got handmade soaps (not by me, but definitely homemade), handmade washcloths, the women got a homemade facial scrub (made with Dead Sea clay, and other natural ingredients), and a handmade piece of jewelry by me.  Oh, and I also got them these cute little scented wax dipped bears.

My parents got the same except instead of jewelry, I gave them scarves that I knitted for them, and my brothers and sisters just got the soaps and washcloths and lotions.

I think I am going to try to stick with the handmade/homemade Christmas theme again this year.  Everyone seemed to enjoy the soaps and such.  And if I do jewelry again, I will need to stick to supplies I have on hand if possible.

That is a load off my mind.  Now I don’t need to worry about how I am going to come up with money for Christmas gifts.

The bailout failed – so what now?

My husband and I are both under the belief that this bailout was not a good idea to begin with, at least not as it stands currently.  Why bailout the banks who screwed up and gave money to people who couldn’t afford it to begin with, especially since the bulk of those loans were the shady ARM loans?  We DID have one of those at one point.  We got out as soon as the flat rate expired and it became the beast that started asking for no less than $200 more a month out of our pockets – and was going to continue to go up.  Fortunately the market was still stable then, so we were able to do this easily.

Read the rest of this entry »

His old iPhone paid for our groceries this week

I sold my husband’s iPhone today as planned.  On the way back from selling it, with $150 cash in hand, I stopped at the supercenter to do my shopping.  I designated $100 for food groceries, and $50 for non-food groceries.

Read the rest of this entry »

For sale: sold

I decided to try craigslist to sell a few things.  The few things I have listed have not had any queries to my inbox yet, but I did sell a couple other things by finding people who WANTED the items I had planned on listing, and emailing them first.

We had two first generation iPhones to sell, since we had upgraded to the 3G versions and no longer had any need for the old ones.

The first one I sold was mine, which was only a few months “old” – it had replaced my original unit in June just before my year warranty was up, when the lower fourth of the screen no longer registered any touches aside from the slide bar to open the screen.  Apple replaced it without any questions.  So, I was able to get $200 selling that one.

The second one I am selling (I am making arrangements to sell it today), is my husband’s.  It is in near pristine condition since he always kept his in a carrying case.  But, since it is the original one we bought, I am selling it for $150.  I just hope it doesn’t have the same issues later that my original one had, because now it is past warranty and I am not sure Apple would exchange it if a different person brings it in, since it is still registered under our name.  At least not without cost since it is past warranty, anyway.  Let’s just knock on wood and hope this one won’t fall to the same weird issue mine did.

Anyway, this money is going to be our food & grocery money for the week.  I just wish the other stuff would sell, because those items would net us another $700 (an above ground pool that needs a liner, new hoses & seals, and our old nordic track treadmill).  Being that we are approaching the end of summer, I would wager that we may not get any nibbles for the pool, unless someone just wants to buy it to have it sitting waiting for next summer before setting it up.  But I posted it anyway, just in case there IS someone out there like that.  We’ll see.

Getting sleepy, so sleepy

I don’t know if I’m going to last much longer tonight.  It’s barely 10pm, which is when we normally would go to bed on a work night, here it is a Saturday night, and my eyes are already getting heavy.

Thanks to the Kiddo, for waking up at 6:45am this morning – despite her going to bed 1.5 hrs later than on a school night.  I just got her down about 10 minutes ago, so this time only about 45 minutes later than school nights – I hope she sleeps ’til about 8.   That would be fine by me.   Especially if I end up falling into bed soon.  If we don’t have any Tivo’d shows to watch this evening, I just may do that.

ZZZzzzzzz….

My achy achy wrist

Dang I must have slept wrong on it last night or something.  It was fine when I went to bed, but when I woke up this morning, it started hurting.  It hurts to bend it all the way forward or back, or hold anything heavier than say, two or three pounds.  This makes doing any sort of heavy lifting – like a 32 lb child, for example – nearly impossible.  Fortunately for me, if it’s a short distance that I need to lift her, I can put my forearms under her underarms and pick her up that way.   This is how I had to handle getting her in and out of the bathtub tonight.

I hope it goes away by morning, I kind of wanted to get out in the front yard and do some more weeding this weekend.  The ones we tackled a couple weeks back, we missed some of the babies and now those have sprouted up like, well, weeds.  And it is starting to look less than attractive.  I can just picture our neighbors grimacing as they drive or walk past our house.

Usually we have a regular couple of landscaper guys who will do the weeding for us, because yeah, we’re that lazy most of the time, but come on!  We live where it gets over 110 degrees in the summer!  I’d rather pay someone else to sweat buckets to pick our weeds!

But I digress… Now that we’re trying to cut back on spending, and because it is starting to get at least a little bit cooler, we’ll have to do it ourselves.  We originally wanted to also treat the yard with pre-emergent killer, but since that is not very cheap, we’ll have to forego it for now and just keep on top of the stinking weeds.  I know weeds grow just about anywhere, but it seems 100x worse when all that is on the other side of the next door neighbor is a big open field of desert plants and weeds.  Coupled with the fact that we simply hate yardwork. LOL

So much for trying to save money this month

The hubby got a speeding ticket on our way home from work yesterday.

It’s jacked up because he was simply keeping up with traffic.  In our state, the speed limit is supposed to be 
“reasonable and prudent”. In other words, stick to the speed limit whenever possible, but if it is unsafe to maintain AT the speed limit, then going a little over would usually be overlooked.

For instance, on the freeway we were on, the limit is 65mph.  If there isn’t a back up of traffic, it is rare to see anyone stick to that limit.  I would say the average is more like 75mph.  We were clocked at 80.  AND being passed by others.

 

So yeah, we think the officer was probably singing “eeny-meeny-miney-mo” in his mind when he tagged us. 

The fine is $172, or $165 for defensive driving school.  Either way we’re coughing up quite a bit of dough.

Dang it.  >.<

200 clicks and finding my niche

I think I’m all clicked out today.  I was slacking on my Entrecard clicks the last few days, so today I decided to make up for it.  I hit 200.  I know it’s not the max, but I think that’s the most I’ve done so far.

It took the better part of my day since I had to intertwine it with doing work at the day job.  Hopefully if most of those I clicked today reciprocate, when I log in tomorrow and use the EC Toolbar, it will load more than just a handful of peoples’ widgets when I click “inbox”.

In other news… I am still trying to figure out what type of niche to chose for my niche blogs.  From what I’ve read it doesn’t even have to be anything I am an expert at, just something I am interested in.  Problem is, most of the stuff I like that I have looked up is pretty mundane and doesn’t get a lot of keyword hits for the most part.  Blah.  I guess I’ll keep trying.

Cutting costs – go me!

My husband and I decided today that we need to examine what on our cable bill we can cut back on to drop the costs a bit. We decided since we really don’t watch our movie channels very often, that we can cut those out of the bill.

We were able to drop our bill by $36 by doing this. We have our phone, internet & cable all bundled together and have a discount because of the bundle, but our phone is billed separately. We apparently have the lowest tier of phone service to be able to qualify for the discount (which is another $32), so there wasn’t anything we could drop on the phone service and not lose the discount, but the customer service rep offered 10% off our entire bill (all 3 services combined) for the next six months because we’ve been customers for so long.

Score! That’s another $12.50 off for the next six months. Woohoo!

So, we’re currently saving about $30 off our electric bill since it was lowered a few months ago, and now another $48 off our cable bill. I’m not really sure what else we can cut back on. Our cell phones are already at the minimum options for those… Oh well. Maybe tomorrow I will check my with-holdings on my paycheck and see if I’m maxed out on that, and if I am, drop it down a level or two on both Fed & State. That will get a little more $ on my paychecks. I just hope I’m at 0 like I think I am so I can drop down to 1…