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Archive for January, 2009

Johnny Law and CashHappySon

January 31st, 2009 at 08:42 pm



I've been working on my ebay listings today (14 new items listed), so there's that for future income. I've also priced a couple of old fashioned outside metal chairs and an enamel bucket for sale in my junque booth. I go on Monday to install them in the booth and pick up my January sales check.

Adding to the $20 Challenge

$015.91 balance
+005.24
_______
$021.15 Jan MTD

2009 Challenge Total $21.15
Cumulative Challenge Total $1023.93

CashHappySon called today wanting to pick up his W-2 so he can go do an instant refund thingawhichie. Thing is he can't really afford the fees for a fast back refund. Not sure if he'll even get a refund since he cashed in part of his retirement (401-K & IRA) this year to pay off his car loan to us.

He did go buy himself a Go-Phone (something like a pay as you go Trac-Phone) blaming me saying that I complained that I couldn't reach him. I explained to him that my statement of fact did not constitute a complaint nor a need for him to spend money he doesn't really have! Oh well. He WANTS a phone.

I hope he can use it in jail when he gets to court on Monday. That's a whole 'nuther story about the $1000 clunker car he signed for from his side-job boss (against Mom & Dad's advice) and got stopped by Johnny-Law and it got impounded because he had no insurance on it nor did it have a tag.

Tickets for that little part of this fun-tasmagoric saga equal $788.00.

Since the car was not offically in his name yet the impound lot hasn't dunned him - YET! The boss says to forget about the car and just let it set there as he doesn't want it or the title back.

Oh yes, he also mentioned that the apartment managment is fining him $100 for having a pet in the apartment without having come and put up the proper pet deposit. All of which was carefully explained to him when he went to rent the apartment. I know it was because I was there when the guy laid out all the rules for him. Ho-Hum!

You breakie the rules - you pay-ee!! He'll learn I suppose.

On sale at the local grocery this weekend was our favorite big-name brand pop at 69 cents a liter. We bought a bunch! We bought 30 bottles! Since it's hard anymore to find them on sale for the normal 99 cents and usually priced at $1.25 this seemed like a great offer. Of course I fell for it and bought a couple of other things - like the slicing tomatoes & cream cheese I went in after! I didn't know they were having the sale so it was a happy surprise.

Ronco SprayHair Paint 4 the Hair Tear Outs?

January 29th, 2009 at 02:58 pm



On ebay one of my books sold this week and Hubster sold one of the computers & monitors laying around the house extra (he's got a bad habit of upgrading REPEATEDLY) for more than we had in it so we're up. And, better - that money ($525 minus ebay & paypal fees) has gone back into the emergency kitty. And nice too - it's out from underfoot where we really had no place to store it so it's been decoratively sitting at the end of my bed.

Also this week FrugalSon paid the kitty back $100 on his remaining balance for his new motor - so he's still down to us to the tune of about $600.

Yesterday Hubster braved the 2009 ice storm to ship out the computer ($35.77) which was covered by the buyer and got the tag renewed for his car which cost $83.50.

A small bit of financial smiles came forth when Hubster reminded me that the checks we are out of will be replaced FREE because of the type of 'Old-Timer' account we have at the bank. Yeah FREE! I'm calling them today to order up.

FrugalSon although not on the schedule (when is he ever on the schedule any more??? They've cut his hours at Burger Arches quite harshly) yesterday got called in for four hours worth of work unloading the truck. When the ice storm lets up we are going into the metro area to see if we can get him on at one of the several major hospitals in our area.

CashHappySon called a night or two ago wanting to know if his W-2s had showed up yet or one of the two checks he's got coming is in. 'Nope' to all three, but I'm fine thanks for asking!! :< He's so self-centered these days - I didn't talk to him but his Dad did - the boy did not even say good-bye but just hung up when he had his answer. GAAAAA! What kind of child have I raised?

I tried to reach him the other day to take him with us when we went to see the new baby, but his cell phone has been cut off - Not a big surprise. I don't know if he's going to work or not - supposedly some girl he works with was going to be giving him a ride. Hopefully he is more polite to her than he's been to us. Fact is, he told me the other day he doesn't care if he keeps his job or not! Exactly the problem I tell him.

Really, does this bald spot on my head show where I've torn the hair out?? I've tried that colored hair spray paint but I'm not sure it's going to work for such a major balding!!! Big Grin How much is this 'coverage' going to cost me??????


To the $20 Challenge I've got:

$005.54 balance
+010.37 in a purse cleanout
_______
$015.91 MTD

2009 Challenge Total $15.91
Cumulative Challenge Total $1018.69

I listed three more books yesterday and will try to get some more done today. There are scads and scads of them that need to go!

Yesterday was a NSD for me as the only time I left the house was to drive FrugalSon in the ice ruts to work.

New Baby Frugalis

January 26th, 2009 at 07:00 pm



Along with his lovely wife, our number #3 child (Man of the Year Son), the 2nd of our four boys and one daughter, just had a new baby boy this past Friday. I got to go see him on Saturday and on Sunday. He went home from the hospital yesterday. Welcome Grand-Baby Frugalis!!! This is the sixth grandchild (4 girls & now 2 boys) and we also have a great-grandson too.

Momma & baby doing fine!!

Gamblers Going Broke

January 26th, 2009 at 06:08 pm


Native Dancer, 1953 Belmont Stakes


"You know horses are smarter than people. You never heard of a horse going broke betting on people." ~~Will Rogers

*No slam intended Disneysteve, I was just reading a local paper talking about how our state is in a quandry over their legalized gambling stance and what it's doing to the working poor. This quote came to mind. It should be noted that people who have their bills paid and their life in order might choose to gamble with their fun money with no harm done to their bottomline. It's those who gamble with the rent money, etc., that cause themselves problems.

CRASH BOOM Life Is In The Pits!!

January 22nd, 2009 at 06:38 pm



I'm back to the quiet side again as CashHappySon's life just went in the crapper and I'm busy digging him out w/o totally saving his hide.

The short story is that a couple of days ago two girls he knows stole his UNINSURED car and totalled it. They were both taken by ambulance to the hospital and are home with stiches in their heads. His story checks out with adult people I trust so I know that in actuality this time it happened as he says.

His Mom & Dad here busy with getting him around for his job, police reports, car impounds, major stress, reiterating all the good things Moms & Dads say during such times as these such as 'We told you so about hanging with the wrong group of people', etc., etc., etc.

Pray for us.

This is what I'm listening to, in an attempt to relieve some of the stress.

It's marvelous! Enjoy!


http://www.youtube.com/v/Us-TVg40ExM&hl=es&fs=1


More later...

3 Thumbs Up! Laundry Dog Makes Discovery!

January 18th, 2009 at 05:30 pm



FrugalSon found a nickel in the laundry to add to the challenge.

$20 CHALLENGE

$005.49 balance
+000.05 laundry donation
_______
$005.54 Jan MTD

2009 Challenge Total $005.54
Cumulative Challenge Total $1008.32

No, he's not in the doghouse. I start the clothes to washing and he moves them to the dryer and folds and puts away as part of his daily chores that come along with still living at home. He also does dishes on his nights off and every morning puts away the dried dishes from the night before. He's 22. For those of you just tuning in he also pays a small Room & Board stipend to the First National Bank of Mom Frugalis.

I am feeling some better. Yesterday I was dressed to shoes, with makeup done and everything and think I'll be able to get to the same level of alertness today. I do like the newish mucus relieving medication - sorry, this is gross, but it does thin the gunk so you can rid yourself of it. 3 Thumbs Up! Uhhh, yeah, well, I didn't say it doesn't make you loopy! So....ummm yeah, Two Thumbs Up!

Yesterday I was feeling so much better that I got about 10 items listed on ebay. And woke up this morning to see that one of Hubster's computer peripheals did sell and he's busy packing it up now for shipping tomorrow. It was one of four sets he had bought for resale, so at least he's on his way to paying back the CC.

And a few of the things he had listed on Craigslist have sold as well. YEAH HUBSTER. My deal with this is not that we don't have room, but that technology moves at such a fast pace that it's better to move it along while it is still viable!

FrugalSon is down with this creeping-crud now. CashHappySon came by to pick up his **OMG $968 OMG** cell phone bill & several letters from the bank on overdraft charges!! Did I say OMG? O.M.G.!!!

The boychild is one stubborn kiddo and will only learn his lessons the hard way. Of course the cell phone company cut your phone off! What the holy-heck do you do to rack up a $968 phone bill???????

Yesterday was a No Spend Day!

Yet Another Rate Hike?

January 16th, 2009 at 04:06 pm



Adding to the challenge:

$20 CHALLENGE

$004.27 balance
+001.22 change from OTC meds & kleenex
_______
$005.49 Jan MTD

2009 Challenge Total $5.49
Cumulative Challenge Total $1008.27

Medical update: Feeling a tad better today, just can't swallow much without pain and now FrugalSon is getting this crud. Hubster had it first bringing it home from his last week of work.

Prices at the pharmacy for OTC for mucus - name brand $20.99 - generic $7.00. Quite a spread! Guess which one I picked?

Of financial news we've heard of yet ANOTHER possible rate hike on utilities.

Thanks to Princess Perky for reminding me, I just made another KIVA loan.

Going To the Dogs-Waiting for the Clinic To Open

January 15th, 2009 at 02:41 pm



"A house without a dog is not a home."~~??



Sick, snotty, aching and waiting for the clinic to open. YEACH!

Adding to the challenge.

$20 CHALLENGE
$004.08 balance
+000.19 change on desk
_______
$004.27 Jan MTD

2009 Challenge Total $004.27
Cumulative Challenge Total $1007.05

Went grocery shopping yesterday the first time since the 26th of December for $135.15 and what did I get? Nothing too exciting just rising prices everywhere. The biggest jump I've noticed is in dry dog food prices which used to run in the $9-10 range are now $13.50-$18.00.

Oh and I forgot to mention that Hubster got a call from his old boss the other day and their plant will be closing permanently and will be liquidated, so there is no going back there! That ship has sailed.

...and now to send you to an interesting place to read with some great monetary cartoons...


http://www.analyticalwealth.com/


...did I mention it's snowing on top of the rest of the pits around here???

No?

Well.

It Is!

Off to bundle my sorry self up to my eyeballs and go out and dig out the car and slip off to the clinic. Thank God we have insurance to at least the end of the month then it's on to figuring out how to pay the awful-oughta-be-a-law COBRA fees.

It's Fallen!

January 9th, 2009 at 04:52 pm



...the axe that is.

I blogged late last month of the possibility that Hubster might be laid off. Well, it happened yesterday.

He's busy today listing stuff on Craigslist that he bought to resell then hopefully off later today or Monday to the unemployment office. He's got a guy coming this afternoon to buy some old stereo equipment. Afterwards we're off to see Gran Torino at the matinee and then out to spend our Christmas giftcards from my Mom at a local retailer. I see new bed pillows in my future with mine. Don't know what he'll buy with his.

Hubster is 62, so could take early SS if he wants to, but we are still 'cussing and discussing' those options. This isn't the end of the world for us as we do have emergency savings, pension options, SS options, 401Ks and IRAs and various other investments and ways to make money at home if the dollar doesn't tank completely!

It would be a no-brainer to go ahead and start drawing SS after unemployment runs out if it weren't for the big difference in our ages. May-December marriages make for some interesting financial discussions when you've never made or saved enormous sums of money. Trying to decide which will keep me into my old age the best way possible is one of the topics dear to his heart during these times. He's been laid off before and we had the same convos then.

Our bills stand currently at a mortgage payment of $353.00 a month if we aren't paying extra to principal and average utility bills of $310.00 a month, and house taxes and home & auto insurance run us $152.50 a month. The basement pantry is full to overflowing so eats are not a problem either.

Here on the desk to add to the challenge...

$20 CHALLENGE

$002.07 balance
+002.01 desk change
_______
$004.08 MTD

2009 Challenge Total $4.08
Cumulative Challenge Total $1006.86

Momma Always said...

January 8th, 2009 at 03:02 pm


Diana Dors


Cleaned out the coin portion of the wallet and found .86 cents to go to the challenge.

I always leave at least a dollar worth of quarters in there during these cleanouts. I'm not sure what for anymore what with cellphones and such, but old habits die hard.

Momma always said a lady needed to have money for a phone call in her wallet! At least I could still buy a hometown newspaper if I needed it.

Let's just face it, shall we? I'm old school.


$20 CHALLENGE

$001.21 balance
+000.86 coing purse cleanout
_______
$002.07 Jan MTD

2009 Challenge Total $2.07
Cumulative Challenge Total $1,004.85

Change on the Desk & Sad Mom

January 7th, 2009 at 03:04 pm



Sculptor: Tom Otterness



More change on the desk needs to go towards feeding Piggy.

$20 CHALLENGE

$000.25 balance
+000.96 change on desk
_______
$001.21 MTD

2009 Challenge Total $001.21
Cumulative Challenge Total $1003.99

---
GRRR! Waitiing on CashHappySon to come over to go with him to pay a traffic ticket. His money, just don't trust him anymore to give it directly to him - it came from his online savings that he has no access to except thru me at this point as he pawned his computer. The judge told him day before yesterday that if the money wasn't there by Feb. 5th he'd revoke his license. First time to ever have a ticket. Speeding.

Of course as his Mom I'm sad & aggravated #1 that he's speeding. #2 that he doesn't have any of his own money on hand to pay it and #3 that he hasn't called to tell me why he's late and #4 I'm just sick of his excuses and #5 that his insurance will go up and #6 that his car insurance premium draft was just refused by the bank. Things are terribly frustrating right now. He's bouncing checks like a madman and refuses to discuss things like a normal adult and is hanging with the worst possible crowd. The discussion got so lively last night that I hung up on him. Hating this!!!

We keep praying that his adult brain cells will kick in anytime now! Pray for us all.

What I Did on My Fall Break aka Lux's Groove Thang!

January 6th, 2009 at 07:12 pm

Well time flies while you are away. It really didn't feel like that long that I was away, but I realize now that it was.

Long ago in my younger life I did a lot of painting, and as a child I spent a bunch of time in the art studio of a rather famous Indian artist. My Dad, my brother, a nephew and even my ex-stepmother (Dad's wife #2) all paint. My Dad sold a lot of artwork when he was actively painting, so there is sort of a family trademark & tradition that I could step back into. I even dated a famous Indian artist's son at one time. He later married another girl and she's quite famous as well.

But - I married someone else, life happens and I got busy with my kids and that hobby had gone by the wayside. It's been over 20 years since I spent any time doing much painting, just the occassional sketching and odd tole-painting class back in the late 80's.

Since my status as a homeschooling mom has ended and my kids are all pretty much grown up I knew I needed to find my creative groove again. While I was on my little fall break from Saving Advice dot com I was busy. One of the things I was doing was setting up an art studio in CashHappySon's old room and I've started painting again. Once I got going good I did a LOT of paintings for Christmas gifts this year.

Here's one I just finished - I love the neon colors and the textured paint:


Artwork copyright © by the Artist.


This was the inspiration - a nice pot of hot pink bougainvillea & a cool chippy multi-color painted chinese lantern that I hauled home from my last junque' buying trip (I mean literally, I drug that HEAVY lantern for about 4 hours thru a giant antique junkers mecca till I could mosy my way back to the car that was parked about 2 miles away!) A treasure w/it's purple, pink, red, black & white chippy paint!!!:



The original is a bit larger and has a bit more detailing and shadowing than this shot & it is signed and framed now.

FrugalSon who is still at home is painting with me. He's doing really well and perhaps I'll show you something he's done in the future.

To make this applicable, let us just say that trying to get back into painting full time is an expensive proposition if you go whole hog like me and try to get your equipment & paints together all at one time! OUCH! But, I'm generally very happy when I'm slinging paint - so if it costs a bit then my thinking is my sanity and joy is WELL worth it!

Goofy, but we each wear our official painting hat while we paint. Mine's an old smooshed up cowboy hat. His an old hat from the feed mill.

I am a registered member of my tribe and once I get grooving on high speed again will likely return to painting Indian art as I did when I was a teen. That's truly where my heart lies in regards to artwork. I am all about the creating, but the marketing and selling is something I really have to push myself to do. Although, I do have a good friend who owns an art gallery! May be time soon to call in those old favors.

December $20 Challenge Deposited

January 6th, 2009 at 01:40 pm



While out running errands yesterday I went to the bank and got December's $20 Challenge deposited. Finally places around here are open for the New Year!

From Piggy was $19.63 plus the .50 that was already there made December 2008 total $20.13.

Still need to go back thru checkbook and update the rest of 2008 challenge totals.

I wish I could be as exacting and precise as some of you (Fern especially comes to mind) on keeping these records up to the minute!! BAAA!! I'd resolve to do better, but I'd be lying to us all!!

How do you keep your records updated?

Grrls Just Wanna Have E-funds! Update

January 6th, 2009 at 12:53 pm



Grrls (Lux's Personal)Just Wanna Have E-funds!


$386.50 updated 1/6/09

This is NOT the same as our Household Emergency Fund. We've got one of those fully funded with a years pre-tax salary already. This is my personal e-fund.

Target for this goal is $1,400.00, to be adjusted yearly on or near the anniversary of my husband's birth.

$1400.00 target
-0386.50 01/06/09
________
$1013.50 needed to goal completion

This is being built by an automated draft of $10.00 a month. Currently it's earning about .40 a month in interest.

The backstory is here:

http://luxliving.savingadvice.com/2008/08/16/adding-to-my-ho...

Do YOU have a personal e-fund? Tell us about it!

Updating the Houseboat Fund Totals

January 6th, 2009 at 12:33 pm



What happened to my sweet little ticker? Hmmmm...I never could get that thingy to work for me like it does for the rest of you!!

Anyway, new Houseboat Fund Total is $270.65.

Backstory is here:

http://luxliving.savingadvice.com/2008/08/13/new-category-4...

Do you have a future dream that you are funding NOW? What is it?

She Did A Costly Boo-Boo!

January 5th, 2009 at 03:10 am



Busy doing a Flylady fling-fest here on all the old receipts and paperwork that just sometimes seems to get out of hand and put into a stash and dash pile.

Feeling the pressure as the 'tax package' came from the CPA yesterday....GAAAAA!!! I'm not ready to think about how hyper-critical he'll be of all my various accounts!

Survived the holidays but of course the house looked like a cyclone blew thru. I've spent the last four days trying to shuffle furnishings around and deep clean all at the same time. It's WINTER cleaning, getting a head start on spring cleaning, doncha' know!

A lady backed into my truck back on the 9th of December in a parking lot. Two checks came from her insurance company totalling over $1300.00 for the tiniest bump you've ever seen. The price to fix these things is astronomical in relation to the size of the boo-boo! Don't know if we'll even fix the truck. Thinking of taking the money and buying a flat-panel TV and with the leftover money buying myself a new front door. We'll see.

Give me a day or two and I'll get a pic up and show you what costs $1300 to fix!

Yesterday was a no-spend day!

Santa finally brought me my inheritance from my Granny (long story and long time coming - she passed away about 9 years ago)! It's the large thing sitting under the lamp, and it's a player one as well. I have lots of great memories sitting with her and singing along as the rolls ran! On the piano are some of the ebay books I've got listed. Only a full basement library to go!!

Adding a quarter to the $20 Challenge - still have to get that record over to the side updated!

$20 CHALLENGE

$000.25 2009 Total