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Day 62 and 63, YOUF/No Spend

January 2nd, 2019 at 06:19 am

My husband walked down to the liquor store and bought a beer. He made dinner for his BFF who lives around the corner. He had knee surgery and his wife went out of town to watch their granddaughter the rest of the week.

We took the dog for a good walk today. We worked a bit on end of the year stuff for the business.

DH made himself a grilled sandwich for dinner and I ate another leftover serving of lemon chicken.

Edit to add 1/2/19: Well apparently I was so sleepy last night I didn't actually publish my post.

That's okay. I ran to town to take my 10 year old granddaughter, Ally, to her doctor appointment for her allergy shots. My daughter's Ford Flex is in the shop again.

My two older sisters and I are having a grocery challenge, trying to keep our groceries to $200. Then older sister took a picture of dinner, so then I did too. It will make me be more creative and use what we have.

I was frustrated with the mail today. There is a collection letter from mom's cable company requesting $325 or $355 or something like that for her components. I mailed them all back via the UPS store several months ago, like June 1st! I'm not paying it. What are they going to do? Send my mom to collections? Who cares?? She is 89 and lives in assisted living AND I did return the stuff. I will call and be nice tomorrow.

Then Costco Citi card charged me interest and I paid in full minus a credit that came through. I always pay the full amount and I did!! So I have to call them tomorrow too!

Oh well, at least dinner was good. I picked some brussel sprouts out of our garden and sautéed with leeks, cauliflower, bell pepper and spinach. I mixed it with lemon walnut chicken I made a few nights ago. I ate every bit. DH put chopped honey baked ham on his. Then I made a free form apple tart that was delicious!

Again I am very sleepy! Oh and I stopped and bought beer and put gas in my car.

Day 61 of YOUF/No Spend Year 2018 Wins and Losses

January 1st, 2019 at 06:20 am

2018 Wins:
1. Mortgage under $100,000 (by $1), paid an extra $22,000 on principal.
2. Contributed maximum IRA funds for DH for both 2017 and 2018 in April 2018.
3. Able to cover all medical bills in full.
4. Celebrated our middle daughters wedding in May, gaining not just a new son, but a new granddaughter too. (Last of 3 daughters to get married).
5. Celebrated our 40th wedding anniversary with a paid for cruise to Alaska.

1. Both my husband and myself had vehicles totaled. The truck was parked in front of our home legally. A well known tweaker was driving a barely legal truck that had a knocked out back window and no muffler, making for carbon monoxide poisoning. The guy was practically asleep after he hit out truck (all witnessed by our neighborhood watch captain who saw tweaker almost hit his truck), came outside and watched him careen down the street towards Dh's truck (which was given to him by his dear friend who just passed away). Then I was in a 4 car accident in which I was behind a vehicle stopped to make a left hand turn, two cars back hit the car behind me at full speed.
2. Did not make my 2018 IRA contribution.
3. Liberty Health denied DH's prostate cancer as "pre-existing". Now stuck because it would actually be pre-existing if we change. Not happy because they say he had cancer "symptoms". Ugh. Next year and the following in 2020 they will pay $50,000 then in 2021 it will be treated as though it was not "pre-existing".
4. Visited a bunch of quilt fabric shops and bought stuff on our trip up to Seattle along the Oregon coast. Came home from cruise and told DH to quit enabling me. He's the worst or best at that! I have vowed no new fabric purchases in 2019. In fact, no buying anything we don't need. Juneau and Ketchikan both had nice quilt fabric shops. We also got to see our former neighbors, a youngish couple, at our Ketchikan stop.

I figure if we can pay an extra $22,000 on our mortgage without even trying, I am shooting for an extra $30,000 this year.

Procrastination, pain and living....

February 2nd, 2013 at 04:53 pm

I had lunch last Sunday with a friend visiting from high school and another friend who lives locally but I never see unless the out of town friend comes to visit her parents and then we all get together.

Anyway on Sunday I told local friend about YNAB. Thursday we all met for dinner and she is so excited. She said it was just what she needed as she is planning to move to New York City in October.

OMG she went home, looked it up on the net, watched a webinar, paid for it and set it up along with her budget for the whole year!!

I have yet to start using mine!

I forgot the dog at the groomer yesterday for the second time.

After my job I do not have a lot of energy left.

Joined WW with youngest daughter who is already a member, but had not gone to a meeting since December. I get the lowest number of points, 26 because I am short I guess. Today is day 3 and leader who gave us a mini session when we joined, said tracking is key, just like money!

I still have not mailed the package to Afghanistan that I posted in Jan. I am ashamed of myself and vow to get a note written and it sent off Monday.

I also vow to get YNAB all set up and start using it!

I will report back on my progress...or lack thereof.


January 5th, 2013 at 04:41 pm

YNAB 4 is downloaded and ready to go. DH left this morning to drive cross country to drop off my 1999 Camry to our daughter. We were able to get him a flight home for about $250.00, which means I have to drive to SF to pick him up in a few weeks.

My daughter and granddaughter will be flying home Wednesday, so I go down this week too (DSIL is deploying to Afghanistan soon)! Luckily the drive down 101 to San Francisco is beautiful, from the Redwoods through the wine country. Nothing like coming around the corner and seeing the city on a clear day....hopefully it will be a clear day!

DH got a small dividend check and bought lifetime warranty nonstick pots and pans from Costco. I told him that was the last thing he got to buy this year!

I have the best, most understanding boss (who is actually our business partner too in another business) so there is no problem with me working on the weekends to make up for the time I am taking off.

So this weekend I need to finish our budget for January, talk DH through entering his expenses into his droid phone, and clean the house!

There is a party tonight at the hairdresser from work's house, so I need to make something. I have a well stocked pantry and freezer so I can come up with a dish I am almost certain.

I have errands to do, returning a couple of Matilda Jane items (boy did my order get screwed up for granddaughter) and get a package off to Afghanistan. Monday is an appointment at the DMV (oh goody) to renew my driver's license and get my new disabled plates for my "new" 2006 Camry. Yes I am working, but have trouble walking and shopping (thus DH doing most of it). I only use the disabled parking when I am having a "bad" day. Otherwise, I figure there is someone worse off than me that needs it.

Time for breakfast and watching the rest of this episode of Princess and then time to attack the house.

Happy New Year everyone and here's to reaching at least some of our goals if not all of them!

Home again, home again, jiggity jig....

September 9th, 2012 at 06:53 pm

Okay so I am a bit impulsive. I have owned 6 cars in my life:

1. New- 1977 Datsun B210, bought at age 19, full price off the lot. I still remember I paid with tax and license $4211 and change. That little car was great, held 2 car seats and was sold to my dad when I bought car #2. He drove it until he couldn't drive anymore and the floor was rusted with a hole where you could see the road!!

2. New-1986 Toyota Tercel 4-wheel drive wagon, can't remember what I paid for it...1 year later found out I was pregnant unexpectedly. Sold to my in-laws when the 3 girls were too squished which led to my first used car purchase...

3. Used-Bonneville bought in 1992. Drove especially well highway 299 when my father was transferred to Redding for open heart surgery. Made several trips back and forth, 3 days home, 4 days in Redding as my father had a very difficult recovery and was in the hospital for over a month. We actually purchased the car in Redding and anyone who knows highway 299 in California, it is an extremely windy road over the mountains to the coast. MD threw up in the car all over the drivers seat on the drive home (true story). Haha. Purchased because I did not want to be a "soccer mom" driving around in a van. Less than 18 months later, the girls were fighting constantly in the back seat. Also the back window leaked, filling the trunk with water. Living in Humboldt and having a garage I could not park in was a very bad combination. This led to a purchase that I at first regretted and resisted, but turned out to be a great car.

4. New 1994 Plymouth Voyager, traded in Bonneville. Cannot remember the price, but payments were $300 a month for 5 years. DH really pushed me into buying the car and I was very resentful. As it turned out this car lasted us for over 180,000 miles on the original transmission. We gave the van to my husband's brother about a year ago. We kept it even though I had bought 5th car as a "dog ride". We would take the dogs and whoever to the beach and not worry about keeping it clean. This car turned out to the the one I drove all over being guess what...."a soccer mom". Daughter #3 played competitive soccer and every other sport all through school, high school and on traveling teams. Actually DH did most of the driving, missing only one tournament. DH also drove girls to other sports events since YD ended up going to private school and parents were required to bus kids.

5. Used-1999 Toyota Camry, 77,000 miles, paid $8000 to a customer of DH's at our car wash. Purchased in 2004 and kept in the garage for a while while still driving van. It was just so well taken care of and I was afraid Van would die, but it didn't, so I had two cars.

6. On Labor Day while looking for son-in-law a beater, came across a 2006 Toyota Camry with less than 27,000 miles on it at the Toyota dealership in Temecula. It was reduced for the Labor Day sale from $15,995 to $14,995. I offered $13,000. Manager comes out with invoice and pointed out the price was only $700 over invoice at that point. Okay I said, then how about $500 over invoice. He went back to his office, came out and said okay. So I wrote a check and paid for it.

I was not really looking for a car, but I felt like it was one of those deals we would be kicking ourselves about. I paid about $2000 under KBB.

So i handed 1999 Camry keys over to the kids and told them they had custody for 6 months. After that, my middle daughter gets it.

I hate to even go into the story of why I did this, because I'm sure I will get lots of negative feedback. But we all have different values and what the heck, I can take it.

You see my son-in-law originally had orders to move to Hawaii. The kids traded in both their cars and bought a new Juke because of the price of gas in Hawaii and they would only need one car living on base. So in paying for my granddaughter's preschool, they were going to have to buy a second car. Their cash budget was pretty low and so when we went out looking it was hard to find a decent car in their price range.

My plan is to keep the car for at least 10 years. It drives very comfortably, much more so than the 1999 model. I knew I was going to be zipping down to see the kids every few months and was concerned about how long the 1999 would last, so this was just too good a deal to pass up.

Hey at least I paid cash!

So much for the goal of once a month check-in

August 23rd, 2012 at 04:13 pm

Well here I am in Temecula, California where the kids have moved. YD flew back to South Carolina for 3 weddings she booked before her husband's transfer to Camp Pendleton. My granddaughter turned 4 on August 18th. I arrived August 16th.

Financial things have been happening. I have a job! Yes I still have pain from fibromyalgia, but it is much improved after upping my amitriptyline from 10 mg a night to 30 mg.....100 mg is the usual for depression so I am well under that, but it seems to be helping the pain (but then the temps starting staying above 50 degrees at night around the same time, which also helps). Hopefully it will still help during our cold rainy season......

Anyhoo, I have been transcribing a couple of medical reports a month for my old ortho surgeon boss. I volunteered to do the billing and sending of reports since I had heard his wife (who I worked with for several years at his office) needed back surgery. I called her and she said goody come in and I will show you how we do it. I walked out with a pretty much full-time job with benefits becoming her executive assistant. She runs an assisted living facility in the town I live in. DH and I are now covered again by health insurance, having been uninsured for 11 months. It is extremely flexible (I am in Southern California for 3 weeks) and it is very fulfilling at the same time. Perfect job.

If my pain comes back in the winter bad, I will just cut back my hours. I don't have any set responsibilities, it is just keeping boss lady on track and helping out with administrative duties where needed.

Also our home in KF, Oregon where OD went to collge (second degree in diagnostic ultrasound) is closing today. Not sure what our loss is yet, but we are happy to be done with it. It was never supposed to be a rental (market fell right after DD graduated), we did not want to become landlords. We were very lucky in that in the past 5 years since, we have only had about 4 months that we did not have renters. We were extremely lucky to have fabulous renters, 3 different ones who took really good care of the house.

So the plan is to refinance at a 15 year rate and put that money back into our home, which is where we got the money in the first place. Looking back, it was stupid, but at the time it seemed smart. Who knew the housing marked would collapse? When we built the house, it seemed like a great idea!! Haha on us.

The rate at our credit union for a 15 year mortgage is 2.875% with no points. I told DH to get his butt in there and check it out since we should have our money anytime.

In other financial news, my small comp claim settlement will be received any day now too, so things are feeling pretty positive with us.

California has set up the exchange with Obama care, but it is still really expensive. For DH and I it would have been $900 a month, so having insurance covered for both of us is such a relief. Yes I am working for it, but in a flexible fulfilling job. I really couldn't ask for more.

In spending news, we are paying for granddaughter's first year of preschool. She is going to the St.Jeanne le something school here in Temecula 3 mornings a week. With daughter gone and SIL on duty, I will be going to mass and orientation with granddaughter on Sunday, meeting the teachers, etc. The kids already toured the school and granddaughter loved it. In fact when my daughter drove me over to look at it, granddaughter cried because she wanted to stay. Thus we tried to teach her the concept of the "school year".

I have been using the David Allen Getting Things Done method at work and have been very, very successful with it, so much so a coworker started writing things down instead of keeping everything in her head.

Now if I could only be so organized and on top of things at home!!

Now that I have a laptop I hope to keep up better here. I bought daughter's 3 month old laptop because she could not calibrate it to edit her pictures. Yea!! Now I can surf, post and pin while sitting with DH at night watching our TV shows!!

My new job/hobby!

November 28th, 2010 at 01:47 pm

My new hobby kept me hopping yesterday. After reading several couponing blogs and sort of dipping my foot in, I made an all out effort yesterday to get going on this.

I was a little more organized, but still have a ways to go.

My first stop was Bed, Bath and Beyond where I purchased "Your Baby Can Read" with a 20% off coupon for my granddaughter. It will be interesting to see if it really works. In the meantime at 2-1/2 she likes videos and books so this goes right along with her current favorite activities.

Then onto Walgreen's where a very helpful checker (who also takes advantage of Walgreen's rewards, reassured me that I was not an "irritating" customer as I warned her I would be. She also gave me the site she follows: which morphs into

My personal favorites are and probably because I live in Northern California.

Since my SIL needs shaving supplies in Afghanistan, I picked up the Nivea deal and some Gillette fusion blades (geez I am glad my husband does not shave). I had no idea how expensive razor blades are.

I did a total of 4 transactions at Walgreen's buying an assortment of stuff, piggybacking the Register Rewards each time. Total spent $44.85, savings $19.43. Plus I have another $12.25 in Wags bucks for my next visit.

Next was CVS where I had a $5.00/$25.00 to start with. I should have "mapped" it out a little better to maximize my use of Extracare bucks, but with my DH along and not adding purchases as I went along and not sure if they take off manufacturer's coupons before totalling, I did just 2 transactions. My first was for Starbucks Via. I had a $1.00 off coupon and a CVS $1.00 in Extracare bucks. Remembering you can only use 1 coupon per item and not being sure if Extracare bucks is considered a coupon, I threw a 99 cent bottle of Milk of Magnesia onto the checkout counter making my first transaction $3.05. My second transaction was for $34.67 with $17.00 in Extracare bucks back.

I got Listerine packs for free along with a tube of Colgate and bottle of Herbal Essence shampoo for free. I also found an incredible buy on one of the end clearance aisles: Secret Clinical Antiperspirant for 99 cents! This is what YD uses and I know I paid about $8.00 for it in the past. My receipt is showing I save $8.80 on each package. I also found Sure men's deodorant for 99 cents. DH consented to one. I got two other deodorants for DH for free from last week's ad. I have a couple on hand, so I think he is well fixed for about a year!

Um yeah, forgot to pull that 75 cent coupon off the Truvia. I had a $1.00 off though already.

After avoiding the checkout line at both drugstores, by the time we got to Safeway, DH was bragging to the checker about "my wife's new job". Notable purchases at Safeway were $5.00 off $15.00 worth of frozen foods (what can I say we love our ice cream) and Almond Accents which were on sale for $2/3.00. I had a Catalina for $1.50 off 3 and 3-50 cent off coupons making them 50 cents a bag. I also had a $2.00 off a meat purchase when buying Coors Light. DH found a package of stew meat marked 50% off to 2.57, making it 57 cents!

Okay it was fun, but by the time dinner was over and dishes were done, my fibromyalgia was so flared up that I had to take 1/2 pain pill and lay on a heating pad for an hour reading my latest Jodi Piccoult novel, checked out from the library, natch!

Since we only have Rite-Aid in my little town and shopping all at once is difficult physically, I need to plan my outings a little better. I do not know if DH was a help or a hinderance. I warned him to not talk to me or tell me to hurry up as this takes time. He was pretty good about it and he did carry the bags out to the car and into the house. I don't know how women drag kids along while coupon shopping. My hats off to them!

Frugal Friday....

September 3rd, 2010 at 02:56 pm

Am I being frugal? Is cash only really helping? All I know is that since I quit my job and am now a stay-at-home wife/grandma and took over the responsibility of shopping, I feel like all I do is spend money. But maybe that is because I did not do the grocery shopping before quitting my job. The only spending I did was "personal"?? DH has done the shopping/cooking for over 30 years! Now I do it .... with his input.

When you guys would talk about no spend days, I would think what the heck.... most of my days are no spend days!!

Now I understand!!

Part of the problem is getting into the routine of shopping and cooking. Like we run out of milk for my granddaughter or fruit or veges.

I think I need to plan better. No make that I need to plan better, I don't think, I know! I need to look in the frig and cupboards before I make a grocery run, shake the milk carton. I was just at the store on Wednesday and then had to go last night when I realized there would be no milk for her for breakfast, and she loves her sippy cup first thing in the morning. What is a grandma to do? Run down to Safeway and buy Lucerne brand 100% lactose free milk since I used my only Lactaid coupon. It was $3.79 a gallon. It was $3.00 at Winco (Darigold brand) and I need to make sure I buy enough to last between trips.

So that is the plan.....planning better!

What happened?????

August 29th, 2010 at 11:38 pm

Did I read the P&G site incorrectly. I could have sworn the San Francisco Chronicle was going to have the Proctor and Gamble Super Saver in it this weekend. So I spent $3.00 to buy a Chronicle and no P&G saver.

It seems like printing coupons is expensive the way my printer goes through ink cartridges.

Part of me thinks I should just stay away from coupon sites because I just find myself getting frustrated reading about everyone else's great deals.

2010, Time to Begin

January 1st, 2010 at 07:03 pm

Well 2010 is starting out with possible bad news. It is very hush, hush, but I was told I may be losing my job to outsourcing. I have been at the hospital for 13 months. It is possible I could get a different job in the hospital or I could do transcription again from home for an outsourcing company. The problem is the great health benefits I have.

DH and I sat this morning before he left for work (just to close out the 2009 books) and worked out our plan. Groceries and household paid for with cash that will be kept in envelopes in our safe. Gas may be charged on AMEX (Costco), but DH will give me receipts to pay immediately. Travel will also be charged on Amex, but that will most likely be sparse this year. We have a large AMEX bill as usual and we have enough to pay off all credit card debt (put YD and SIL's flight home on another) AND we have enough to cover January's expenses.

So I am following the YNAB plan of living on last month's income. If I had know I was possibly losing my job I would have made some different choices in the last few months. DH bought me an IPOD for my birthday and I suggested we take it back. He was very hurt by it and said we can just deal with the loss of the job if and when it comes.

We can survive on DH's salary alone, even budgeting $600.00 a month for health insurance, but we will be pinching every penny until it screams! DH has never participated in the finances except to be the main spender since he grocery shops and works 2 blocks from Costco. I told him no more bringing home filet mignon on the spur of the moment from Costco.

I told him I need help in being frugal like starting geranium clippings for hanging baskets this year instead of buying plants (other types of flowers). In other words we need to look at every aspect of our life, not just food.

My mammo and annual exam are scheduled for January and I am hoping to get my colonoscopy scheduled this month (first screening). I know I have health insurance at least through January since I have not been laid off yet. Who knows, it could be six months, but apparently it is in the process. I am going to live like it is my last day of work every day.

We have plenty of food in the freezer. We were able to pick up a case of Foster Farms chicken breasts at Costco for $1.39 a pound. So we have 108 frozen chicken breasts along with the rest of the side of beef and some venison from this year. Living in zone 9 for gardening, I think we can plant lettuce, spinach etc next month (we eat a lot of salad since I am low carb). We still have kale and swiss chard producing. We also have about $1800 in gift certificates for Winco (western cheap grocery store) that was DH's bonus from work.

So my goal is $300 for food and household (cash, not including Winco). Gas is hard to budget since we have to get to work, but last year it ran around $300 a month. I have plenty of yarn and fabric to keep me busy and I have been utilizing the library for reading. DH also got me a bunch of I-tune gift certificates along with the IPOD, so I don't plan to spend anything for that. Apparently the library where my daughter lives lets you download books, so she is getting a library card and will let me use it too because I would love to listen to some books on tape while gardening and cleaning, etc.

So I am trying to not be worried, but it is kind of hard at this point in our lives (I just turned 52, DH turned 51 in September).

So 2010, time to begin!

Nice surprise

September 16th, 2009 at 09:33 pm

We order DH's work boots every couple of years and when ordering today, the online store gave me 10% off for no apparent reason. Of course the fact that they cost $227.00 a pair might have had something to do with it and my wait on hold....

Anyway what a nice surprise. So I thought I would give a shout-out to:

Tomorrow is probably going to be my last 4 hour day since my shoulder is definitely getting better. I see the doctor tomorrow and I imagine they will increase my hours.

So I guess I'd better get back to getting things done around the house.

January 2009 totals

February 2nd, 2009 at 01:48 am

Budgeted amount Spent amount
Income total: $7,793.73
Charity : K-Love Radio Station $40.00
Charity : Miscellaneous $5.00

Utilities : Gas and Electric $32.74
(overpaid last month)
Utilities : Water $0.00
(Paid in December)
Utilities : Phone & Internet $87.55
Utilities : Garbage $46.90
(Billed bi-monthly)
Utilities : TV $114.64
(Yes I know, what can I say)
Utilities : Cell phone $30.00
Food : Groceries $319.69
Food : Restaurants $27.25
(Okay so things went downhill after my Costco hot dog/drink fiasco!)
Transportation : Gas & Oil $216.13

Medical/Health : Miscellaneous $12.66
Medical/Health : Reimbursable $124.57

Personal : Allowance-Cheryl $100.00
Personal : Allowance-Ron $100.00
Retirement: Roth IRA-Cheryl $50.00

Insurance : Auto insurance $306.68
Household : Cleaning supplies $20.29
Household : Miscellaneous $1,937.95
(December AMEX charges)
Household : Pets $54.82
(toys and grooming, almost out of food!)
Household : Holidays $5.35
(Christmas cards for next year)
Debt : State Farm Bank $200.00
Debt : RSB Bank $141.00
Investments : Car wash $486.70
Gifts : Ally $51.15
Gifts : Miscellaneous $125.97

Gifts : Katie and Jimmy $21.47
Total Spent: $4,651.35
Balance in checking 2/1/2009 $5,720.74

I paid off my Amex this month weekly, reflected in the various categories. I am especially proud of our groceries for the month. Hoping to do the same in February along with really a no eating out month! It's a short month, I should be able to do it! I was surprised by our gasoline costs, but some gas was reflected in investments and DH filling up going back and forth to the new business.

I went over in the car insurance category. Our monthly rate for 3 vehicles is $107.00, but somehow pay my Toyota Camry every 6 months and that hit this month.

Our income was higher than usual due to a $3000.00 dividend check. I already put that into savings along with paying my mortgage 2/1/2009 to ING Direct.

I had a rough week, ended up in the ER twice, once for a UTI and 45 minutes thereafter for a reaction to the medication they gave me. Luckily I work in the hospital, so it was close! DH went out of town and brought me a lovely lunch the day he left (Wednesday) so that was the eating out along with breakfast purchased in the hospital cafeteria since I was feeling sorry for myself after being diagnosed Friday. Ended up being told to go home by ER doc, which I did, a coworker drove me home and I dozed watching Lifetime movies the rest of day/evening with my doggies close by.

DH came home last night and today we went to pick up my car at work, then went to Safeway for their sale. Ended up getting 8 packs of Diet Pepsi for $1.00 a piece (in store unadvertised special) and then 4 packs of Diet Coke for 7.99. We cherry picked other on sale stuff, some veges, canned goods and Cranberry juice and managed to spend the required amounts to get both $10.00 off and a free $5.00 pepperoni pizza!

DH made a leftover turkey goulash type dish with side of fingerling/sweet potatoe roasted. Yum!

Time to go see what's happening with the Super Bowl.