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Archive for September, 2010

Healthy Foods - Check

September 29th, 2010 at 03:43 pm

Went grocery shopping today for lots of healthy foods and snacks to help me start of right! Got grapes, apples, bananas, celery, lettuce, tomatoes, baby carrots, yogurt, cottage cheese, skim milk, orange juice, crystal light, chicken breast to grill and halibut filet. Hoping that with all this yummy fresh and healthy food around I won't crave the naughty stuff so much.

New Biggest Loser - I WILL WIN!

September 28th, 2010 at 05:55 pm

So the new Biggest Loser started today at work. It runs from 9/28/10 to 12/14/10. There are 7 participants, so the winner gets $70! I am so motivated and dedicated this time. I hit the gym today and it felt good. Today was my last morning with naughty breakfast (had to get a meal in before the first weight in...heehhee), and Thursday is my last day with pop. I am going to set aside $20 a week for the money I was spending on pop and breakfasts. I am not sure what I am going to do with the money yet.....but something fun for me.....maybe new clothes after I lose some weight or maybe some new rollerblades or a new bike. New breakfast is fruit, yogurt or cottage cheese. I'm excited to be started on this!

MOH dress and oh my gosh time to hit the gym.....

September 27th, 2010 at 10:53 am

This weekend I traveled to visit the bride to be in a wedding that I am the MOH in. We got her dress picked out and bought as well as the bridesmaids. My dress was $216.....I was prepared to pay up to $200, but it still was a bit of a shock, I guess I was really hoping for $100 - $150. Oh well, that was not the worst part......I am the MOH and there are 3 other BMs. Two of them ordered a size 0. Yup, you could add them together and they are still a size 0. My dress is a size 14. I am feeling pretty depressed about it. I don't feel like a size 14.....my measurements were bust 36.5, waist 33.5 and hips 41.5. Luckily the wedding is not till May 2011, so I have about 8 months to change that, but even if I kicked butt I would say the best I would hope for is a size 8-10. PUKE.
Ok, that is enough of my debbiedowner......here is a pic of the dress.
The color is a teal color on their color chart called oasis. At least it is chiffon and flowy so will hide my tummy. DH is helping me make a training routine to focus on my abs, arms and back. I am quitting pop on 10/1/10 so I have just a few more days and then it will be gone....no diet pop either, just done with it. Me and the gym are about to get real tight real quick. Wish me luck!

Oh also it was a very cheap weekend other then the dress so that was good. I stayed with my friend, so no hotel costs, and her parents paid for all of my meals for the weekend as well as drinks. So only the dress and one tank of gas were paid for by me.

Savings Tips 1-4

September 19th, 2010 at 04:25 pm

Here are some savings tips I use. I really like to use tips that help elimate waste of resources. They may be really basic, but they work!

Savings Tips:

1) Don't buy gift bags. I always buy wrapping paper, it lasts much longer and is cheaper. Instead of spending $3-$4 on a GB for one wedding gift, you can buy one roll of wrapping paper for the same amount or cheaper to be used on numerous gifts depending on size. I have had the same wedding wrap for 2-3 years now. For Christmas you can buy a few different kinds of wrap each year when they are on clearance for very cheap, then you never have to buy expensive bags or pay full price for wrap. I have a large gift bag that I save all my wrapping paper scraps in. Lots of pieces that you couldn't use for the gift you have can be saved and work perfect for smaller gifts like DVDs, CDs, books and jewelry. I also save all the gift bags that I get for birthdays and Christmas and keep them all together so if I am in a hurry or a bag will just work better for the gift I do have several to choose from. I also save the tissue paper.

2)Don't spend a lot of money on cards. If you really enjoy cards maybe you disagree with this, but I could not care less about cards with my gift. You read it once, you open your gift.....you go home and throw away the card and never think about it again. So I buy all of my cards at the Dollar Store, 2 for $1. I buy several birthday, wedding, graduation and baby cards at once and keep them with my wrapping supplies so I don't have to make a trip out to buy one card. I just think it is ridiculous to spend $3-$5 on a card that no one will look at again (unless maybe it is a special card for your husband/wife or something that might be saved.) Like I said if you like cards you may feel differently. Or you can always make your own card with a piece of paper folded in half and some crayons or markers.

3) Unplug. We unplug EVERYTHING. There is nothing in our basement that is plugged in right now except the washer and dryer. The TV, all lamps and any electronics are all unplugged. If we happen to spend time in the basement we plug them in while we are down there and then unplug before we go back upstairs. We keep all appliances, can opener, toaster, mixer, and radio in the kitchen unplugged unless in use. Also the laptop, cell phone chargers etc. We have our main TV hooked up to a light switch, so when we hit the switch it turns off the power to the outlet that the TV is connected to, so that is "unplugged" when not in use too. This helps a lot with the electricity bill.

4) Keep the heat/air off as long as you can. Every year when the seasons change we wait as long as we can stand to turn on the heat or air. I live in ND, so that can be a challenge! We are trying to last till October 1st with the heat off this year. It has already snowed here, so it is not easy. But if you wear warm clothes, socks and keep a blanket around if you are laying on the couch you will still be comfy. Open the shades when the sun is out and let it help heat your home. If you made something in the oven leave the oven open after you have removed your food and turned off the over and the heat from it can easily warm a room. Or cuddle! Smile Same goes in the summer, open the windows at night, close the shades, wear layers so you can take some off to stay cool. When we do finally turn it on we still keep it very low, especially in the winter as you can keep yourself warm with clothes and blankets.

Possible Roomate

September 18th, 2010 at 10:49 am

DH's best friend is considering moving here from another state and moving in with us. He has a "lady friend" that lives here and they broke up a year ago, but are talking about getting back together. He is staying with us for about a week now while he decides. So I think it would be awesome if he moves in, he is a great friend, it be fun to have him around, plus he would pay some rent too. We figured $250.00 a month, which would cover rent and utilities. He would have his own room and bathroom, plus we never use the living room downstairs so he would have an area to himself with a TV. Then we could put that full $250.00 to mortgage principle. Of course I have had roomates before and I know it is not all fun and smiles. But the friend is very laid back and sweet and don't think it will be like when I had female roomates when I was 18, lol. So probably getting ahead of ourselves already, but if he did move in that would be awesome for the mortgage, so we shall see!

Over $7K in $20K Challenge

September 14th, 2010 at 04:51 pm

Current Balance $6,805.00
+$50.00 to EF from DH's Paycheck
+$50.00 to Vacation Fund from DH's paycheck
+$100.00 to Anniversary Cruise Account
+$250.00 Rummage Sale Money to New Car Account
New Balance $7,255.00

$20K Update

September 13th, 2010 at 08:23 pm

Current Balance $6,655.00
+$50.00 to EF from Paycheck
+$50.00 to Vacation Fund from paycheck
+$100.00 to Retirement Hold Account from paycheck
+$1.12 ING CD King mattress Interest
+$60.88 Even out Amounts
-$112.00 To 2010 Roth IRA
New Balance $6,805.00

As soon as I get my rummage sale money from my Mom I will add that. I also got a small bonus at work that will be in my paycheck on Friday, and if I can swing it I will add some of that too.

Rummage Sale was a HUGE succcess!

September 13th, 2010 at 08:07 pm

The rummage sale was C R A Z Y Busy! The street I live on is like "rummage sale central" in my city and this weekend is the big rummage sale weekend of the year. It was so ridiculously busy all weekend and we are exhausted! DH and I made $350, $100 of that was sportscards my husband sold, and about $80 was snacks. The rest was "junk", books, clothes, and misc house stuff. I sold everything from the box of bathroom supplies I just marked including a shower cady for $1, shower curtain - liner - rings for $5, cup - toothbrush holder - soap dispenser for $5, bathroom rug for $2, and a few misc for another $3. So I am really glad I marked that box, cause that box alone made us $16. DH also sold the dartboard from the garage that wasn't for sale....lol. But it has been sitting in the same spot on the shelf since we moved in 3 years ago, so I am glad someone wanted to buy it for $5! The rummage sale as a whole made a little over $2800!! Outrageous! Most of that was my Mom's stuff, but my brother, SIL and my Mom's friend also made a couple hundred between them. I told DH he can do what he wants with the $100 he made on sportscards (he will probably buy some more, like he needs them!) and I am putting the other $250 into savings for a new to us car. Glad to be rid of some junk and very happy with how the sale went. We are still getting everything seperated and packed back up that was left, but have already put 4 boxes together for Goodwill as well.

Last Rummage Sale of the Year

September 9th, 2010 at 04:19 pm

We are having one more rummage sale this weekend. Today it was rainy, but hopefully it will be nicer out this weekend. I finally unpacked a box of old bathroom decor from when we moved into this house 3 years ago, toothbrush holder, cup, rugs, shower curtain, shower cady etc. Everything is nice, but did not match the color scheme we picked when we moved in. So got all of that marked, plus our old printer, lots of books and clothes. Hopefully we will make some cash and get rid of some junk. Smile

Home Appraisal = GOOD NEWS!

September 9th, 2010 at 04:09 pm

Our home appraisal for our refinance came in today. Our house went up in value $15K! WHOOOOHOOOO! This is good news on numerous levels. $15K in just 3 years since we bought it! I am surprised and happy. The only thing we have renovated on the house is the second bathroom. Which we only spent $800 on that. Soooooo, the increase in our home value means that we are D O N E paying PMI on our mortgage! YEAH! We were paying about $70 a month for the PMI, so now we can redirect that full amount to principle on the mortgage. Now we just have to wait for the paper work to be all prepared, will be all done soon I hope!

Tired of going down... :(

September 4th, 2010 at 03:13 pm

I though DH's pay would start on 8/31/10, but turns out he will not get his first paycheck till 9/15/10. So I had to transfer $1000 back out of savings to cover until he gets paid. Hopefully I won't have to transfer any more then that.

Current Balance $7,600.00
-$1000.00 To Checking account
+$5.23 ING Monthly Interest
+$49.77 Even out Amounts
New Balance $6,655.00

As soon as we see DH's first paycheck I am going to make a new, usuable budget! Savings needs to be the priority!

Bingo, Casino and More Free Vegas

September 4th, 2010 at 02:48 pm

We went to the bar down the street yesterday to play Bingo. It is only a $1 a card and we only play one card per game (3 games) and a nice way to relax on Friday after work. But we never ever win at Bingo. They have good jackpots (up to $1200) if you hit the blackout within so many numbers. Yesterday the blackout prize was $600 if you hit it in like 58 numbers. Nobody got it, but DH did get the consolation blackout Bingo.....$21! Which he had to share with another person....LOL! YEAH $11! Oh well he was happy anyways just to finally get to say BINGO!

After Bingo we went with a friend to the casino. We were not going to go today, (we have not gone since we won the $800 over a month ago) but a coworker was talking about it all day and really gave me the casino itch. So we went for a few hours. I ended up hitting $270 betting .90 cents on a penny machine! Yeah! So had about 4 hrs of free entertainment yesterday and even came out ahead.

And lastly we got another comp flyer from the Hooters Hotel and Casino in Vegas. We got :
4 night free stay
$100 in free play
8 free breakfast buffets
Unfortunatley the freebies are only good until 10/31/2010 and we will not being going to Vegas again until next August. But we were excited that we got more comps, hopefully we will get more closer to our visit.

Buying gifts and other misc shopping

September 4th, 2010 at 02:33 pm

I went to buy some gifts today at Target. I got a diaper genie for my brother's baby, it was one of the things that no one got them from the registry, so I figured I would pick it up. Then I have a friend who is getting married in November, so I figured we might as well get her gift today too before everything was off the registry. I usually spend about $30 for a friend's (not a super close friend) wedding gift. The only thing on her registry for around $30 was a Brita water pitcher. It was $30.79, so we went to find it and it was $5 off, plus you get a $5 gift card to Target for buying it! Yeah! So got a $30 present for $20. Happy with that deal.

I went to Kohl's this week to buy rugs for our bathroom that is FINALLY finished! I will post pictures soon, I just need to find a picture to put on the wall and then it is ALL done! Anyways.....I bought 3 black rugs, they were all on sale for 50% off, but still came to $40. I was also going to buy a small black garbage can for the bathroom, but this teeny tiny black garbage can was $26! Ummm no way! I figured I could go find one at Target for cheap, but my Mom actually suggested the Dollar Store, so I will have to go check there first.
I had an extra lavender rug from our other bathroom that I had received as a house warming gift when we moved into this house in 2007. They gave us 3 rugs, but only 2 fit nicely in the bathroom. I had it sitting in the linen closet since then cause I was not sure what to do with it. Since I was going to buy those new rugs for the other bathroom I figured I would just return this one. But they told me they could only give me $2 for it since they clearanced out that color. Frown So I told them I would just keep it. Not sure what I should do with it....I would try to sell it at the rummage sale but the person that gave it to us helps my Mom with the rummage sale, so I wouldn't want her to see that and feel bad. Hmmmm...