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Hickups in the plan

January 21st, 2014 at 10:26 am

Well our project has gone over budget so I might be out of this job quicker than planned.

The good news is that I have saved enough to have my bills paid til March after I get this weeks paycheck plus a 3 month buffer beyond that should unemployment not be an option.

My husband also started a new job with more pay and has been steadily paying off his highest interest debts. So he can now help carry me should unemployment not be an option.

And I still have my part-time job to bring in some money to try to live off my own savings for a while. And of course my shiny new toy is now completely paid off. I will need some new accessories but those are easy enough to come across frugally.

I'm hoping that even if it takes a while to get a new job I can somehow still reach my goal of paying off the car this year but well see how it goes. Nothing is set in stone and I've made some fantastic financial decisions and finally been able to conquer my credit card debt and get my expenses down to a more than reasonable level.

I'm am so happy I have not only stuck to the plan but been able to achieve goals I've longed to reach for years including getting a fancy new camera! Smile

Learning how to play with my new toy

January 14th, 2014 at 08:30 pm

I went to my last class and it was so helpful now I am super happy that I made the investment into this kind of camera.

I can just think of all the pictures I can take all the memories I could capture. I can't get accessories yet but as soon as my next check comes in I can buy things for it again Smile Anyone else enjoying their Christmas toys?

Back on track

January 10th, 2014 at 12:47 am

It has been a crazy December having a balance that seemed to replenish itself every time it was paid off. But now its January and a new year.

The camera is now paid off and even though it was a low paycheck I was still able to put a tiny bit toward savings and the car goal and retirement.

Have to say I'm not doing too bad. Hopefully this cold will taper off and then I can put in some overtime hours to get closer and closer to my goals before my job goes away.

Things seemed bleak there for a while but they are okay again. I'm half way through my house organization project and I'm okay with not being able to finish it due to lack of finances.

For one thing I'm not sure of what I want to buy and for another I'm thrilled that I am right back on the if I don't have the money than don't buy it plan.

I'm just happy to know that even if I do get a little of track I can get right back on again. The other good news is that I have been saving money and working toward my goals for so long now that it feels weird to not put away money toward them.

I'm thinking that by allowing myself to get that camera I can focus again. Before it seemed like an endless tunnel of no fun and like I would never be able to get what I want to get and only things I need. But by allowing myself to get something I've wanted for two years it seems that I feel a little more upbeat now and happy.

I have also decided that at some point soon I will allow myself to buy some clothes as I have very few. Yes I need to lose weight but I need to have something to dress myself in the time being! Hope everyone is doing okay in the post holiday/trying to keep up with their resolutions January.


January 5th, 2014 at 07:44 pm

Figured out all kinds of budget things. SO happy that I'm still on track.

Close to reaching 4 month goal, might reach my 2K goal for IRA within a few months.

If I find a way to make an extra payment on my car every month I can pay it off by the end of the year! I think it might be doable even if I lose my main temp gig.

I'm hoping it will all pan out. Paid up on car insurance for a while too. All in all things are looking up.

Oh and my camera class is soon too. Kinda nervous but excited to learn.


January 2nd, 2014 at 10:13 am

Well it turns out I didn't have as much as I thought I did in the next check to pay off my new camera. It's okay though I'll just do it in two payments it won't be due until the end of this month anyway.

Other than that no hickups in the plan. Still putting money away paying off loans etc. Looks like I'll be employed til Feb. The goal is to save up another months worth of expenses and send more extra payments to the car.

Jan is a wash due to the new toy but Feb should be good maybe after all this there will be another job. One can only be hopeful!

I got a new toy!!

December 30th, 2013 at 03:08 pm

Christmas was awesome and I was able to reward myself with something I wanted forever. A beginner dSLR camera I'm so excited to learn about it. It came with some classes and what not to show me how to use the thing.

Things will go back on track for money but its nice to see efforts pay off. I hit my goals and allowed myself to have something I have been pinning for for years it feels pretty damn good.

Still have no credit card debt which is fantastic and it looks like the job will drag on for a little while longer so all in all a good holiday week. Smile

Update: Things are better

December 27th, 2013 at 08:37 pm

The part time job calmed down and they are way cutting my hours. And we got a week off from the temp job due to some project hold up.

The great thing is the missing money is not going to affect me at all because of my planning I had already taken the money for bills out of the last check.

I am optimistic again. And Christmas is paid off. Time to plan for the future and get back on track.

Getting too tired to keep going

December 20th, 2013 at 09:49 am

The time might have come to end my part-time job. They are trying to boss me around and impede on my regular full-time temp job.

The mention of the place causes me stress. They just upped my hours which has affected my full time job. I am worried about not being able to put as many hours in my full time job which has comprimised my ability to work toward my 6 month emergency fund goal and my goal of paying off the car earlier.

It's starting to feel pointless. I was so tired and lazy I didn't make at home coffee and got some meals out which cost me an extra 35 dollars.

Christmas is here and I wanted to get the cards out on time. Between my full and part time jobs there is no time for that.

Maybe after the holidays and my shifts are less I'll feel better but right now the stress of the full time job and the unnecessary stress of the part-time job are eating away at me and I just can't take it.

I have been working both jobs for almost a year now it is overwhelming. I hope that I'll be able to recoup and renergize soon because right now things seem rather hopeless and futile.

Hope everyone else is having a better holiday time than I am.

Christmas grrr

December 13th, 2013 at 10:55 am

I am still working at my temp job which is lovely. But I decided to do a little extra for Christmas which has put my put extra payments toward my car plan on hold.

But good news is I'm still contributing to my IRA, toward my EF and x amount of expenses month fund while keeping my cc balance manageable. I put some Christmas things on there for the reward points. It was great to see that high balance disappear just as quickly as it was charged with now rewards all for myself. I'm hoping that I can get my EF back to at least 2K again before the end of the year and fund my savings account for 4 months of expenses. That would be grand!

In the meantime I'm working in my resume to get my next gig all lined up so I can keep this financial stability going into the new year! And trying to restore balance by getting back to the gym. Need something to get all this energy out.

Hit another goal!

December 2nd, 2013 at 06:25 am

My sad little IRA account has finally hit $1000. I had not been blessed with (fruitful) employment until recently (even if it is only temporary) and that fact combined with a little serious credit card debt meant that saving decent money toward retirement wasn't much of a reality til now.

So I guess I can look at it as 100 bucks a year for the last 10 years and reflect on the fact that it may be better than what most people in my age range have saved. I just know that now it will grow it to several thousand dollars now that there are no more credit card issues. It's amazing how much better I can sleep at night even with a small emergency fund, $1000 in my IRA and no interest racking up on my credit cards.

After three years I am finally making some goals

November 21st, 2013 at 11:26 am

There are things that I want to do financially, a lot of things. But my debt and infrequent income have not allowed me to hope or dream for much of anything other than ensuring that my bills are paid on time.

Now with a little cushion in the bank, cc debt paid off and being at the tail end of my car loan I think its about time I started making some solid plans. Just strive to make money and focus on paying off debts and increasing savings.

I want to be able to reasonably afford a new car when I'll need one and save up a nice down payment on a house while paying down debts and socking away money in my retirement fund. It may be a lot to ask but at least now it seems within the realm of possibility. My cash system has finally worked correctly and I haven't picked up a credit card to charge anything that I couldn't already afford/had budgeted for with cash.

Even though its coming to the end of my current assignment I feel hopeful. My part time job will cover some expenses unemployment or brief temp assignments will cover the rest. I won't be easy but it never is. And at least this time I have a cash buffer and a plan. I'm so glad I sacrificed to pay off the debt. I feels so much lighter to know cc payments should no longer derail my efforts to pay down my loans.

I'm going to do the best that I can but for once I feel secure and that is really saying something for 3 years of not knowing how the next month will go.

Somewhat upset but hopeful

November 17th, 2013 at 09:52 pm

I did the calcs with the new book I got and while I'm happy I'm in control of finances I realized that I should have been saving more.

But here's the thing.

Since this temp job started:

-I planned a wedding for less than 5K and it is completely paid off.

-I paid off 3200 worth of credit card debt.

-I had 2800 in my emergency fund in September before my medical emergency cut it down to 1200.

-Aside from my emergency fund, as of this week I have money set aside for 3 months worth of expenses.

I'm mad because:

-My temp employment means I can't save as much as I'd like to for retirement.

-My credit card debt has kept me from saving for an emergency fund and retirement for far too long, I am very happy to be rid of it.

-My current debt keeps me from being able to buy myself many things I'd like to buy, which normally doesn't bother me but seeing how far behind I am in my goals and knowing my current employment is running out soon makes me feel like its all going to reset and I'll run out of all the money before someone is willing to hire me again.

-I should have asked my current employer if I was eligible for unemployment. I always have been when I worked at a temp agency but these guys hired me as a no benefits temp employee. I can of course ask HR this but I may want to wait until I'm much closer to the end.

-Knowing that I might not be entitled to unemployment its scary to think I only have 3 months worth of expenses saved up and have to rely on my part-time job only to carry me through once those funds run out.

-I still have less than 1000 in my IRA, I've had this IRA since I was 18. If I had been able to put more money in there I would have much more. The returns on the stocks I invested in almost 10 years ago have been amazing.

Ultimately though I haven't done so bad for myself. I paid for a wedding, didn't touch a penny of my part time job checks except for 4, one for tires for the car, one for medical bills and 2 for the wedding.

-I did save up 3 months worth of expenses and while its scary to think I may have to rely on it, its comforting to know that I have at least that cushion.

-I have done the best I can do to replenish the EF but felt it was more important to get rid of the cc debt since I have no idea what the pay rate will be on my next gig but know that there is no way I can pay it off on my part-time one.

-I also managed to convince my 2 of my credit card companies to convert my cards into rewards so now when I choose to use them I am getting money back to do so.

-I have kept my expenses low and learned to cook more things which means we eat out a lot less than we used to.

-I gave myself a break and I am finally giving myself a few more bucks each week to spend on food etc. This should help from racking up the cards again as well.

All in all the picture isn't bleak but its still not rosy. I'm a lot better off than I was when I graduated from school and doing fine considering that this economy is awful and some people have had no work at all while I still continue to get at least 1 assignment a year.

I am grateful but it does get hard. I start to wonder if my goals are reachable, if a home or children is financially even possible.

I do hope my current position calls me back but I'm going to stay strong and hope for the best. I stand by my work and efforts and just soldier on to the next job. This time though unlike the last time I have a bigger buffer than before, which is good because I might end up needing it!

Discretionary spending is part of the budget too!

November 13th, 2013 at 08:11 am

I just bought a personal finance book that helps me figure out how to save money with my irregular income. Now that my credit card debt is paid off I wasn't quite sure what to do next.

The answer seems to be save. But I have charged some things to the card the past two weeks. I felt like a failure til I read this book and realized. I wasn't setting aside enough money for what I actually spend each month.

So I calculated out that number and its isn't that much in the grand scheme of things but I'd like to lower it. For now while I still have steady cash flow I'm finally going to accurately allocate money toward my spending trends each month (groceries, eating out, entertainment, shopping - as in buying clothes, a kitchen tool etc)

I'm hoping now that I'm not trying to put every penny toward those other credit card payments by giving myself an realistic "allowance" I can now not feel deprived and use everything that is left over to reach my goals while sitting being able to put gas in my car or have one coffee a week if I choose.

I do worry that I will not save enough before my assignment ends but I haven't finished the book yet either.

My goals for this week's paycheck are:
-Pay off the groceries I charged to the credit card because I ran out of money
-Give myself an allowance so that next week's groceries won't end up on the credit card.
-Plug those holes that have left me just short of the 3 month expense goals.
-If anything is left over apply it to your other financial goals.

And for myself I'd like to finish reading that book. A part of me wishes I had come across it before but in reality I'm happy I did enough on my own and got to a positive point where I realized now that my credit card debt is gone I need to come up with a system so that I don't mismanage my new found "extra money."

Looking at the big financial picture I really haven't done too badly for myself. But I can always do better. This whole financial security thing seems to really suit me lol.

Looking at the big picture once again.

November 6th, 2013 at 02:26 pm

Now that the credit card debt really is gone I have started to get some clarity on what I should do next. I started looking into money advice for people with irregular income like myself.

It seems like so far I've done well. I have lived off of way less than my means and saved almost 3 months of expenses plus an emergency fund.

The advice I had never encountered before was to take into account your other expenses which is a good idea. I had never formulated much of a budget on items such as groceries, eating out etc. Just restricted my spending to a certain amount which I never seem to hit.

I have had mint tracking my expenses for quite some time and have a list of bills that I do have to pay throughout the year even if they happen once a year (renter's insurance, excise tax/registration etc etc).

Now I just have to insure I budget for those as well. I have probably have another month of work or so. I'll figure out my numbers once my printer ink arrives and see what else I can be doing to ensure that I stay afloat while I have little to no cash flow.

For the first time in a long time I feel full of possibilities rather than worried about how I am going to make it through. That is encouraging and a very nice place to be indeed.

Reality of short savings goals

November 4th, 2013 at 10:38 pm

Now that my credit card debt is gone I can finally focus again on saving. And I'm short. I'm short on my three months goals. I'm short on my Christmas goal, gift fund goal etc.

It's frustrating. It feels like I cannot get it sorted out before this job ends and like I can't seem to win and have to be stuck of off living off of nothing for a while longer.

But then I think wow my credit card debt really is gone. I really can pay out an extra car payment each month and still save for goals for as long as I am employed.

Today was a pain and so was last week as I had some unexpected expenses. But they are taken care of which feels pretty good. And I am still credit card debt free today. I guess as someone had said on the blog comments. I need to let this accomplishment set in before I freak out about the next.

I've been stuck with that debt for so long most of the years since I turned 18, that I need to relearn things. I'm just so programmed into the payments its become a bad habit. Guess its just time to replace it with a new one like putting that money toward paying off my darn car, or just really breathing easy that as long as I keep my savings high, the credit card nightmare is finally over. Just hoping I can plug those savings gaps.

I have accomplished a lot and I just need to remember to take it one step at a time. It took years to rack up the debt, and years to pay it off. Building up my savings will take a while too. I just need to be patient.

Heck Yea no more cc debt

November 1st, 2013 at 07:17 am

Well its the end of cc debt for me and I could not be happier. My temp work is in its last stages of the project but I will be getting a good amount of overtime. At this point well just see how it goes. I have added a monthly bill to my one of my cc's so that is it still be used for credit score purposes.

I have a gap of about 500 or so dollars from actually hitting my 3 month of expenses goal since I had to take on a new bill but I will plug that hole in the next paycheck. After that I think I will just save the money to hit 6 months worth of expenses if at all possible. And I'd like to make double car payments if at all possible but well see how that all goes since if I do that I will be able to pay off the car in a years time. I will have to reconfigure all my numbers for that. But for now I am going to happily celebrate my accomplishment with a cup of iced coffee. Happy Friday everyone!!

Time to loosen the vice grip

October 25th, 2013 at 10:21 am

Lately I've been so focused on money that I have let other goals fall by the wayside. I need to relearn balance.

I have stuck to being frugal and next week if everything goes well I will be credit card debt free. After that I will go back to saving and making double payments on my car.

But I have other goals I'd like to reach and I keep not going for them. I have had a goal to lose the 15 pounds I gained like sick and I keep putting it off. I need to start back at it. A week ago I was all pumped up for it. Picking out my gym clothes and updating my bag. I guess my thing is really that I want swim but there are only certain times when the pool is not busy so that I'd actually get a turn. I suppose I should just stick to my plan of waking up earlier and seeing what the pool crowd is like at that time.

It would be nice to focus on fitness again and fit back into my old clothes not to mention cost effective.

Does anyone else out there get to caught up in finances?

Possible New Medical Bill

October 22nd, 2013 at 09:42 am

My teeth have been killing me lately the fillings on them have worn down I think. I still have no insurance and even with it dental work is pretty expensive. I have no idea how I can save up enough money for that but I am sure going to try. There are some places that will give you a free consultation. I think I will try one of those out and get an estimate and then shop around for other estimates. The dentists I have seen haven't all been great so I'll have to see if any of these are decent as well.

Decent probably costs more money. Frown I do need to eat though and its starting to get difficult due to the pain.

Frugal Social Outing

October 20th, 2013 at 12:12 am

Today I did an event that I have done for the past few years. The difference today was that I spent much less money than I had in previous years and I stuck to my guns. It was pretty great. I have to say frugal fun can be fun too. Smile Plus its great to leave the day without a credit card balance.

Countdown to midnight

October 17th, 2013 at 11:32 am

I am so happy to report that first the first time in a long time I will be getting a paycheck from which I have not already spent a penny out of.

I am so excited to see how much I'll have left over after the bills and how much I can apply to my credit card to wipe out that pesky debt once and for all.

If I wipe it out I will have one less payment when my job ends which means this time I will have enough money left to afford groceries. I am just so excited.

More training to come on my contract job really happy that is going to go on longer. If it goes on long enough then maybe I can build a nice big fat EF before its all said and done. Smile

An end to credit card debt/ 2nd time credit card debt free

October 15th, 2013 at 11:47 am

Things are going well at my contract job and so it looks like it will be going on for a bit longer.

Originally I was just going to stockpile money but now I see this opportunity to pay off my credit card debt again and it is an amazing thing to be so close to. It means to me one less payment I have to make when my contract job goes away which can be used to groceries.

Last time I had to pay $50 toward my credit card minimum and so I had $20 left to eat groceries. It was pretty gosh darn rough.

If the job goes on even longer than one month then depending on how much money is saved I will probably put my extra money in savings to build my cushion savings from 3 months to 6 months and build my EF back to 3 grand from the 1300 that it is at right now.

This next month is not going to be easy by any means but I will be so happy to know that I paid off my debt. I was credit card debt free once before and it did not last. This time I know it will since I have money in savings and did not touch my credit cards at all for the 9 month bout of unemployment I had. Weirdly or maybe not so I tend to charge on my cards when I have money thinking I will catch up.

After last weeks epiphany I do not think I will feel the need to do that anymore. I have been staying in my spending limits not buying things that I cannot afford right now. It has been so nice. And I know changing my mentality will mean I will no longer be racking up my credit cards.

My car loan is still $1500 over the worth of the car at the moment however I will reevaluate what I would like to do about that once the credit card is done depending on how long my contract employment will last and how much money is in my EF and my account with 3 months worth of expenses.

It feels so good to be that much closer to achieving my goals than sitting there in the negative because I could not wait to have something I thought I deserved or that I thought I needed.

Transfer approved

October 10th, 2013 at 11:25 am

It appears that my balance transfer has gone through which I am super happy about. I got news from my job that I will be working for just a little while longer which is nice.

Things are okay and the car they say is fine, they just lubed everything up. I need to secure the tire in the trunk but can't figure it out. Putting it in my tiny studio apartment is not an option and there is a space for the donut but it's too small to accommodate the full size spare.

Stuck to frugality which was pretty awesome. It's really helping nothing extra is being charged on the cards keeping me on track to pay off the last revolving cc balance. I'm so thrilled. Next I just have to get my butt back at the gym! Ha one step at a time.

Sticking to frugality

October 7th, 2013 at 11:07 am

Last week I had a little hickup in that I was too lazy to make myself coffee at home for a few days sadly that cost me $20 in starbucks coffee. Frown

I did however do good at eating at home and only spent just $10.00 out. Just now I put in for a balance transfer from a 19.8% interest rate to a 0.00% offer on another card plus a $57 fee. I did some calculations and the likely hood that I will not pay off this card while still working this contract job is high. I will probably get one, or if I'm lucky, two more paychecks out of it. So I realized it only makes sense to switch it over because when I have to go back to making minimum payments they will now be applied solely to the principal which will help me pay it off quicker even if I am not gainfully employed.

Now let's just hope the bank approves the transfer. I still have to bring the car in and will make that appointment shortly. I might as well find out what's wrong before something bad happens to the car or if it wipes out what's left of my emergency fund and I have to find a way to refund it quickly before my job ends.

Time for one last doctor's appointment and then hopefully after this week things will go back to normalish.

You can't always get what you want

October 4th, 2013 at 12:19 am

Today at midnight my one check came in. I had to take so much time off from my part-time job that I didn't even get a paycheck for it this week. I was so worried about this week because my regular paycheck from my contract job would also be short and I had to pay off the balance on CC1 (now clear), and I really wanted to make a large payment to CC2 (now marked as CC). I signed up for a pasta class at my local Sur La Table and I had two more in mind that I wanted to do. I wanted to do a run and another fun event. Plus I have a doctor's appointment coming up and an appointment to check out my car plus having to fill it with a full tank of gas.

I was sitting here racking my mind trying to figure out what possibly way I could do all these things and then it really hit me. I told myself: You don't need to do all of these things and you cannot afford it! You would have to charge it and since charging it would deter you from paying off the cc balance then you cannot afford it. Besides that you have a finite amount of time at your regular contract job. You do however need to refund your EF and you need to pay down your cc balance. You are just going to have to pick a few things and let the others go.

It's just hit me if I want something I will just charge it or try to save less etc to make it happen but right now having paid off two credit cards and being so close to paying off another I realize in order to stop having a balance I need to only get things that I can afford right now, at this moment. Yes there are things I could afford and I could charge them and pay them off by the end of the month but doing that would just take away from paying off a long standing balance on other card. The past two months I have screwed myself out of paying off that card and months before that I was building up an EF. Although I don't feel bad about the EF since if I had paid off the credit card the cost of my medical bills would have just negated what I paid off putting me right back where I started.

I'm just wondering why its been so hard to tell myself no before. Why I couldn't just put my foot down and stick to the plan. Maybe its the whole growing up thing. Maybe its the fact that after paying off my credit card debt once the easy way and now the hard way I've learned my lesson and can finally use them responsibly. Whatever it is I'm glad that it happened and that I am sticking to my guns. Yes I would like learn skills in cooking classes and do fun runs. But I can imagine how much happier I would be in that cooking class knowing its paid off (like the one I will be attending) or doing that run knowing that I was able to pay for it with a debit card than having it sit on a credit card with crazy interest.

I'll be much happier doing these things later when I know choosing to do something fun didn't impede my being able to make a payment that could help to wipe out my debt.

I'm so glad I'm finally sticking to a if you can't afford it than don't buy it plan.

When you have two jobs and money is still tight

October 1st, 2013 at 12:55 pm

Today I was once again going over what needs to come out of my next paycheck. About 39% of it is bills, then the plan is to do 40% to credit cards payments, then to keep on track put 18% for savings which leaves me with a whopping 3% of my paycheck for myself. It's been like this for a month now ever since the medical bills. Although those percentages of where the money went was different (x amount toward medical bills, x amount toward savings etc) things have been really tight.

It just seems like there's been one big money event after another, the wedding, funding my savings fully, draining my savings in order to cover medical bills, trying to build back savings while aggressively paying off my credit cards before my assignment ends. And now the credit card pay off plan may need to be put on hold depending on what they say is wrong with my car.

I am very happy that this all happened while I was gainfully and not so gainfully employed all at once since my not so gainful employment made it easy to build an emergency fund while my gainful employment covered the wedding and paying credit card bills but it feels like such a struggle and I'm getting sick of it.

I have been struggling my whole life and while things are certainly getting better. There's still no steady income on the horizon. Just strategies to hold on to the money I make while I make it and hope it carries me through to the next assignment. I'm hoping that this one will stick or at least get me a call back.

I don't mean to be depressing and whiny but I just feel like something has got to give!

Possible Car Trouble

September 29th, 2013 at 11:25 pm

So my car is making knocking noises. I'm going to bring it in and pray that there is nothing wrong or that it is covered by the warranty/deductible. My EF is almost empty and so I hope its nothing serious. I have another account with 3 months of expenses so I can cover it but I just really hope that's not it. I also hope that its not something so serious I have to get a new car.

My loan is 1500 more than what the car is worth, so that loan would stink. My checks are both going to be low from the time off I needed to recover my from my illness. Please send some warm wishes my way. I'm really going to need them. Frown

Interest kills & a reflection on the path to here

September 26th, 2013 at 12:05 pm

My statement came in for CC2 and I've now been bounced back to 2237 from 2194. I used to just deal with interest it was just something I ignored with but now its made me angry. If I'm able to make my big payment on CC2 next week then I think I will consider moving the balance over to the other card which is having a special balance transfer offer of 0.00% offer and 3% balance fee. The rate is good until Jan 2015 and I know it will be paid off by then.

I overspent by about 9 dollars at the game but it could have been much worse. I know I can't trust myself with my credit cards when I'm out and about for an event and I'm so glad I was strict with myself. It always hurts to wake up the next day and wake up and realized that you spent and extra 70 and have to figure out where its going to come from.

This site had been great and kept me on the straight and narrow. I still sometimes lament on not being able to afford things but keeping on the path to being debt free will allow me to splurge and afford it every once in a while like I was just able to on this game.

I remember a few years back when I first was able to go on a trip and every penny had already been paid off compared to years prior when I had to put it on a card or have a friend front me the money until I could pay them back.

I remember the first time having to come up with 1400 wasn't a Herculean task. I was out of school for a semester and they wanted me to come up with the money I had owed them for the previous one and I couldn't use my financial aid toward it. I had been working two jobs and was saving up cash and had about 1200 in my account. I was able to pay mostly in cash and the other bit with my credit card. During that time I was bummed I hadn't been able to make more of a dent in my cards but I figured if it came to being able to complete my education and saving myself some money in interest then education was the way to go.

The road to here hasn't been easy. Not having a steady job has certainly been difficult. But now I'm in a place where I have an emergency fund large enough to cover a serious issue, a few months of expenses save up, fully funded mini bucket funds and less than 3K worth of credit card debt. I do hate my part time job but it contributed to this financial state. I didn't like being a temp but if I hadn't been I wouldn't have gained such varied experience that led me to be the perfect candidate for my current contract position.

I am grateful for everything I have and know that one day if I keep working hard, saving and budgeting well I will get to that magical place were I am debt-free.

Rewards, oh sweet rewards

September 25th, 2013 at 09:34 am

I have had a credit card with rewards for years now but I had just let them pile up in hopes to earn enough for a free trip. Since it is an AMEX though it was though to accumulate points as most places wouldn't accept it. I gave up on the dream after a while and ended up with about 10K points.

After coming to this site I realized I should pay more attention to my rewards and so I investigated and found out I could convert them for almost 100 in cash. That was pretty exciting so I immediately cashed them in. That's just 100 more toward my savings goals almost effortlessly. Then I went to two more rewards programs I participate in and found that I had almost 60.00 in rewards that I had not claimed yet. That is going into the Christmas fund. How exciting. In about a half about I had an extra 160. I really need to stay on top of those rewards!!

Take me out to the ball game

September 24th, 2013 at 09:57 pm

Well its a good and bad thing but really a good thing. After shelling out thousands for medical bills and going through pain and then a nice recovery I finally decided to shell out money on something for me that's fun tickets to a baseball game! The good news is hubby and I are splitting it and its well within my means to pay for it. As in he'll pay me for his ticket.

The bad news. I put it on a credit card so I could get rewards for it and also since I won't be able to pay it off til next week when my paycheck comes in. It's only $100 so its really not breaking the bank and I'll still be making the same large payment to my other large credit card balance and putting the same amount of money to refund my EF. It just digs into next weeks spending money a little which is fine with me.

It just feels so nice to do something fun for once it is also awesome that's its not something I splurged on but can't pay off right away which is really great and I'm getting rewards for it too. The credit card is already back in its hiding place so I don't take it out with me to the game and buy dinner, beer etc etc. I'm bring x amt of cash with me and then that's it. No more messing around with my budget! If I want this debt to be gone I have to work at it but at least that doesn't mean giving up all (affordable) fun in the process. Smile

Baby steps

September 23rd, 2013 at 05:10 pm

Today I got a little bit of extra money which I was able to use to pay off my last medical bill from all the appointments and the rest went toward the first big payment I've made on the credit card in a while!

It's pretty exciting. My next check will be a little short due to time missed for work but I'll see what I can do. I'm thinking I'll get at least two more paychecks out of my contract job if not more and in that time if I'm lucky I'm be able to pay if off while also rebuilding my emergency fund.

I was dreading paying off the card but now that the momentum has started I'm just excited to see it going in that direction and the debt melting away. Maybe if I'm super lucky I'll get picked up for something else sooner rather than later and then I can pay something else off. Smile

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