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Archive for December, 2008

Shopping

December 29th, 2008 at 04:36 pm

Yesterday I got out of the house alone for a few hours. My favorite past time, window shopping, kept me busy but I did buy a few things. This weekend my $20 spending money was burning a hole in my pocket. I ended up paying $7 to get my eyebrows waxed, $4 for an iced decaf white mocha, $2 for 2 new eye shadows and $3.99 for hair coloring.

I haven't colored my own hair since high school, but I hadn't had it colored since my son was a couple of months old and he's almost 2. So I took the plunge and colored it last night. It was relatively painless and turned out well. My sister is moving to Atlanta in 2 weeks - not only am I elated beyond belief to have her here, but she attended cosmetology school and can help me do it in the future and will cut & style my hair for me.

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I ventured into CVS - can't believe I hadn't really done that before. I'm going to try to catch the ECB train; I signed up for their rewards program. Our house is very small, so I don't have a lot of storage space for pantry & HBA items, but we'll see how I do in time. Combining the P&G brand saver coupons from the paper, I purchased items I needed on sale (shampoo, paper towel, body wash) and used coupons. I ended up with $2 in ECBs. I got diapers on sale at Target and ended up spending enough to send away for their Bonus Coupon Books. I'll take all the diaper coupons I can getSmile

http://www.pgeverydaysolutions.com/pgeds/en_US/jsp/EDS_Page.jsp?pageID=Year-of-Savings

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Today I spent a few hours in the office. We basically shut down the last 2 weeks of the year, but since I only have 11 days in the office now before my maternity leave starts I have a lot to get wrapped up. I finished off the day tidying my office which always makes me feel a great sense of accomplishment.

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Hubby and I spent the weekend getting ready for the new baby. I got the 0-3 month clothes from the attic and washed, plus the bassinet. We rearranged Baby D's room and made room for his baby brother's stuff in the chest of drawers. Otherwise, we're all set. I'd like to find a used double stroller, so I keep scouring craigslist and such.

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I need to change my withholdings this coming year. It's silly, but I've been claiming 0 for so long to ensure I get a nice refund, but I'd rather get that money throughout the year to pay down our debt. Does anyone know of a good source for figuring out what will be taken from your check each pay period depending on your withholdings? If all else fails I'll play with paycheck city. I did try the irs.gov calculator to just tell me the number of withholdings, but I didn't find it that helpful.

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And thanks for the kind words about my son. He ended up burning his left palm/fingers badly in a campfire (the morning after). We spent a few days at the Burn Center in Augusta and he had 2 surgeries. He's so resilient and awesome and he's just doing so well!

Progress to Date

December 27th, 2008 at 02:20 pm

Aside from a modest mortgage, our debt consists of 2 student loans - both mine for college & grad school, plus a used Honda we purchased earlier this year. All in all, the total originally incurred for all 3 of these debts was over $70K.

If we had continued the status quo payments (we had always added a couple hundred a month to pay extra on our debts) I calculated it wouldn't be until 2014 that we'd be rid of all of these debts.

I'm so excited at the conservative prospect of being debt free (except mortgage) by the end of 2011. I'm gonna push that goal as hard as I can!!

Note: we started this new journey back in September - a couple of weeks later our baby was badly burned (he has healed so well!) and we incurred about $2800 in medical bills. Thanks to our efforts these bills have been paid in full as of 2 weeks ago and we are excited about getting back to attacking our debt in the new year.

Excited to join in!

December 27th, 2008 at 02:06 pm

I've been reading most of the PF blogs here on savingadvice for a while now. I think that being able to interact with all of you will contribute to my focus and intensity in getting out of debt.

I always considered myself a pretty frugal person. I don’t buy things I can’t pay cash for using my credit card and I love to bargain hunt. I don’t have a single thing in my house financed and still have furniture from college. Fortunately I do have a really good paying job and a great husband that stays home with our son (make that sons in January!). We thought we were getting ahead because we can afford all of our bills and still have money left over each month for things we’d like to purchase or do.

When we got married 7 years ago, my hubby had just graduated college and I had a year to go. Somehow he began listening to Dave Ramsey, and even read Financial Peace before we got married. We both are really good at budgeting, so I read the book as well and we decided we do a modified envelope system - a carefully tracked electronic envelope system using our debit card. This has worked pretty well for the last 7 years. We even still only give ourselves $20/week of spending money each - same as back in 2001! I guess the bad thing is that the only thing we really internalized from reading that book was the budgeting approach.

Over the last year my husband has been listening to Dave Ramsey on a daily basis. He and our son listen to the show archive each morning over breakfast. When he heard Dave was coming to Atlanta to speak on the Total Money Makeover, he encouraged us to go. We got a sitter and went in September.

Well, since then I’m angry with us! I always considered myself a smart person, but I am not savvy in the ways of investments and certainly not in challenging the cultural norm of debt. We are OVER IT!