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April 21st, 2007 at 08:50 am

Yay! The weekend is here! I couldn't wait to get here...long week.

I took our $300 out for the week yesterday and added it to the $10 I had in my wallet. Youngest ds and I did the weekly grocery shopping...spent $140 there. Put $20 in the hidden envelope, and gave $50 to Dh for his spending money.

I have $100 to get me through this week...plus the $40 in the hidden envelope, but I'd really like to not spend that. Dh has added 'flowering plants' on the list of things he would like to get this week and this comes out of joint money, not his spending. Yikes! Add that to haircuts and new clothes for oldest ds and oops! I may have to use some of the $40.

$300 Update

April 20th, 2007 at 06:17 am

I ended up being treated to breakfast yesterday, so it was at no cost to me. I didn't spend any of my $17! However, Dh took $15 to buy beer for himself and my brother...hockey game was on and Canucks were playing. So, I'm down to $2 plus the hidden $20. We made it through the week on $300!

So, I'm starting the weekend with $322. I will tuck $40 away, give $50 to Dh, $20 to ds's friend for his birthday gift and the remainder will go toward groceries, shorts for ds (13) and a haircut for ds (7). I can't think of any expenses that I or dd will have this week...

Dd and I had a challenge that if we both ate 5 fruits and vegetables for 20 days we would have sushi. We made our goal yesterday and so it's sushi time. I asked her last night if she cares whether we go out or make it ourselves, and she told me it doesn't matter to her because it tastes the same anyways. I love my kids! Homemade California rolls here we come...

Almost Stupid

April 10th, 2007 at 05:33 am

We went looking for a new car for me yesterday and I had my eye on a gorgeous cherry red 2003 Saturn Vue. The tiniest detail really flagged me, though. The asking price was $16990 and I only have $6000 in cash. Can you say 'Car Loan'? No, we cannot. Good thing that Dh was with me and pulled me off the lot!

Today I will be taking a friend's 1993 Honda Civic for the day to test drive it. Her husband is a mechanic for the local Honda dealership, so you can bet that this little vehicle is in tip top condition...and, of course, it is a Honda. Dh's was a 1990 and it had 460,000 km on it before it finally died. The asking price is $1500. Definately affordable and will get me from point A ot point B on low gas mileage.

New to me car...$1500. Knowing I'm staying debt free...priceless.

Off to the car lot...

April 9th, 2007 at 07:36 am

Yeppers. That's where Dh and I will be going today. The transmission on the van is shot, and we've had nothing but problems with that vehicle for the past year. I don't want to fix it and then have something go wrong next week. We'll go take a look at what's out there...

I am going to have to use our emergency fund to pay for the new one, though, and that really ticks me off. I'm wondering how long Dh and I can get by on one vehicle...probably not very long since I really need a car for work and he needs to get to work! Opposite directions, three busy kids etc. Oh well, I do appreciate the fact that we have the money and, hopefully, we won't have to take out any kind of car loan. My dad really sweetly told me to let him know if we need to 'borrow' some money. I'm 40 years old...I really don't plan on borrowing money from my dad to buy a car. But it was nice of him to offer.

So, the only money that we'll be spending today will be on toilet paper and milk...and possibly a new vehicle!

Hello Everyone!

March 20th, 2007 at 08:30 am

I haven't posted in a really long time...work has been absolutely nuts! My contract runs from September to June and then I'll be re-hired in September. I'm not sure if I will come back. The stress of this job is annoying me (although I tend to put most of the pressure on myself!), but the hours and flexibility may win me over. I'll wait and make a decision in the summer when I'm not in the office.

I went in for a visit at my old job last week. I am so glad that I left there. All the reasons that I quit came flooding back and, for the most part, it's quite a negative work environment, so I know that I made the right choice on that one.

Ds turned 7 last week and we had his party at home. We had a drive in theatre...the kids made cars out of boxes, drove them to the family room, 'bought' candy, popcorn and drinks at the concession stand and watched a movie. Then they had cake and the little guy opened his gifts. The kids were very well behaved, but I still prefer having parties outside of the home...easier on my energy although not on the budget.

Dh's job is not going full time, so we're still ticking along on two part time jobs. He bought a new-to-us car in January...a 1998 Saturn. It's in excellent condition and he looked for almost 3 months before settling on this one. Sharing a vehicle was just too difficult with our schedules and the three kids' schedules. We paid cash, and are now working on building our emergency fund back up to 3 months of expenses. I will end up with about $2400 in tax returns this year, so that should cover the remainder of what we need. After that, we'll start saving for the hot tub to be repaired, and I would LOVE new kitchen countertops...ours are a dusty rose colour...yep, think 1980!

Well, that should catch me up for now. It's good to be back and I've enjoyed reading up on what you've all been doing.


July 25th, 2006 at 07:44 am

left to go to reach our $1000. Through many phone books being delivered, extra hours at my job, can and bottle returns, searching for coupons to use on stuff I normally buy and actually need, and a few lottery tickets that we were given and won a small amount on, we managed to (almost) reach our goal. Today I'll put in some extra time on the job front and we went can hunting last night, so Dh will cash those in tonight and we'll be there! It's a great feeling knowing that we did this together and I'm VERY proud of my family for completing our goal.

The mortgage will be going DOWN...

Our Garage Sale...

July 9th, 2006 at 05:21 pm

We held our neighbourhood garage sale yesterday from 9:00-3:00. Dh and I started setting up about 7:30. It was a beautiful sunny day. We had advertised through the local radio station and signs we put up, but did not use the local paper. This was our one mistake and we would definately put an ad in next time.

All our neighbours got involved, we barbequed lunch and then ate dinner together as well. Everyone brought their own meat and we shared potatoes, corn on the cob, carrot sticks and garlic bread. After we ate dinner, we pulled our fire pit to the front of the cul de sac and everyone roasted marshmallows, had a few drinks, listened to music and chatted until about 11:00. It was a fun day and we are thankful to have such great neighbours!

We netted $73.00 on our sale. I was hoping for more, but every little bit is more money to Dh's $1000 Challenge Fund, so I was not terribly disappointed. We would certainly do it again.

There is a new restaurant near our house that we've been waiting for to open and yesterday it did. The kids really wanted to go there for dinner, we've been promising that we would when it opened, and thought tonight would be a great night to go. I was all for it because I'm super tired from yesterday and am having a very mellow day. DH ACTUALLY VETOED GOING OUT FOR DINNER!!! He said to the kids,"Sorry, guys, but we have tons of leftovers in the fridge for side dishes. Mom and I will walk to the store and get pork chops to barbeque."

Who took my husband and replaced him with this money conscious one? Although he's always been a believer in not having debt and saves for stuff if he really wants it, in our 16 years of marriage has never been interested in the finances. I love this new part of him and hope it sticks around!

The Amazing Race

May 24th, 2006 at 09:36 am

My workplace sponsored a motivational day, themed around the "Amazing Race". There were 10 teams of 4, and we had to race through the lower mainland, finding clues, and completing challenges. My team came in last, but I think we had the most fun. There were teams that actually RAN the whole day...we sat and had coffee, enjoyed the views, chatted with people along the way...it was a great day and one of the ones that really makes me appreciate my job!

It was also a no spend day, so I'm adding $1.00 to my challenge money! Dh has agreed to go with the June challenge of not using our credit cards for anything other than the down payment for ds's braces...the $2200 will add up to lots of points for free groceries. I have the $2200 in our EF so it will be paid off at the end of the month, but I want the $22 in free food!

roast beef and yorkshire pudding

May 21st, 2006 at 08:25 am

FIL won a roast beef in a meat draw at the club he belongs to and he gave it to us. This is awesome! We have all these guests this weekend,this will be perfect for dinner and I'll have enough left over to make some meals for FIL!

We were passing by a shopping centre yesterday at lunchtime and dh noticed a hot dog stand. We had 4 kids with us, I figured we could all have a hot dog and pop for about $12.00, everyone was hungry, and it would save me having to go home and forage a lunch for everyone. When we walked up to the booth, we find out it's a promotional FREE lunch for one of the stores! Free hot dogs, pop, chips and cake for the 6 of us...and $12.00 added to my challenge money! Yay!

Waaaay too much money

May 8th, 2006 at 06:15 am

My Dad and Stepmom came to visit at my brother's yesterday. I'd told my brother that my family would all come over after hockey and we could order in dinner at his house, or everyone could come to our house for dinner. He suggested that we stay at his place since I'd had a really busy day with the kids and hockey. Sounds good, right? Uh, not quite. Before I got there everyone decided that they wanted Japanese food for dinner which a) I didn't really want because we'd just had it, and b)is really expensive for 11 people. I lost. Instead of ordering in, we went out to the restaurant...So, the bill comes. Now, usually my Dad always pays. Money is not an issue for him. He has plenty and is very generous with it. Dh wanted us to pay the bill, so I took it before my Dad could get his hot little hands on it...$172.00 not including the tip! OUCH! I'm assuming that my brother will be giving me some money for his family's portion. He probably won't be happy because he is quite happy to always let my Dad treat. We might be from the same family, but I received all the money genes...

Profit Sharing

April 23rd, 2006 at 08:54 am

I got paid on Friday and my cheque was $100 more than usual because of my pay increase! Yay! There was a second cheque with it for just over $300 because, apparently, the big company that bought out our little company last year has a yearly profit sharing plan for their employees...what a nice surprise it was!
We had a wonderful Easter dinner last week for the family. We made both ham and turkey and all the trimmings. My sils brought dessert and appies. It was so fun and very relaxing and we have tons of leftovers. The monthly meal plan is working out well. Having it posted on the fridge has been great because the kids know what's for dinner and I don't hear any complaints from them. They know that they're welcome to sit with me at the beginning of the month and help with the planning.
Spring ball hockey has started for the boys and that keeps the everyone very busy...dh especially, as he is one of the coaches for ds6!

Got a raise!

April 5th, 2006 at 09:12 am

Well, I had told the powers that be at my work that I wasn't really interested in going full time. I like the flexibility of my hours, ranging between 25-45 hours a week. Right after that conversation, I was told that my hours might have to be cut...hmmm...ask me to go full time with a 20% pay increase, and when I answer 'not interested' I'm told my hours were going to change...not quite on the up and up if you ask me! I told them that was fine with me and I would be happy to work less hours. Yesterday I go in and the Human Resource Manager gives me papers to sign for a $1.94 an hour pay increase and my flexible hours are staying as is! Yay! I am a happy girl today!

On the homefront...our emergency account is stacked and we have a full 3 months of living expenses in it's own account. We're putting 600 a month in RRSP's and pension accounts. I'm buying $500.00 GIC's every month. I started in January, and lock them in for a year. I figure if I can do this for 2 years, every month, that will be a revolving $12000 in case of major financial emergencies! The plan is to save all other money for extra mortgage payments. We owe just under $90,000 and would love to get rid of it!