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Home > Archive: July, 2012

Archive for July, 2012

Early morning walk

July 30th, 2012 at 06:14 am

My little dog hasn't been out walking much this summer, she just can't stand the heat. At most we can take her on a short walk around the neighborhood after the sun goes down, but even then it is often still too hot for her. I just realized that mornings are probably better still, because things have cooled off overnight with the sun gone. Plus she gets to run through all the dew that has accumulated on the grass. A little messy, but nice and cool for my dog! I took her out this morning a little before 7am, we were able to do a nice 15-20 minute walk. She wasn't even panting when we were through. Looks like I've got a new routine until the school year starts up again!

Today I plan on mopping the floors, running 3 miles, and doing some cooking. I'm going to do the running at the gym where SO works, so I can meet up with her during her lunch break. I'm bringing my lunch so there is no expense, we just want to spend some time together.

I'm hashing out the plans for little DDs birthday party (Summer is the party season in my family). It will be at the pool. Her dad is providing the meat for the party, as DD has asked for kalbi ribs. For such a big party that would get expensive, so I'm glad her dad already volunteered to do the grilling. So the menu looks like: Kalbi ribs, red rice, baked macaroni and cheese, hummus and tortillas, and green bean casserole! My child's tastes span the globe Smile

Ok,better get started on my free-yet-fulfilling activities for the day! It sounds a little mundane, but I'll feel good afterwards.

Once a Week Cooking

July 26th, 2012 at 06:12 am

SO loves to cook and really enjoys trying out new recipes. During the school year SO and I do a lot of "once a week" cooking, where we whip up a big salad or soup on the weekend after grocery shopping and rely on those meals to make lunches for the week.

-one less thing to think about each day (what am I going to eat for lunch?)
-easy lunch packing
-healthy (we choose recipes with lots of veggies and good stuff)
-way cheaper than buying lunch
-cooking together on the weekends is fun (most of the time!)

-by Friday you can get a little tired of the same meal

The Pros outweigh the Cons, so it's a keeper! We switch up the fruit or side dish so we don't get too bored. And we are grown ups, so if we get tired of the same meal, well, next week it will be something different, suck it up, buttercup.

I need to get better at taking the meal and whipping it up into something new. Kind of hard to do with soups or salads but I know that with entrees some cooks are really good at getting several different meals out of a "starter" meal.

Automating everything again

July 25th, 2012 at 08:09 am

I revisited David Bach's "Automatic Millionaire Homeowner". I do recommend this book as an easy-read starting point to finances, especially if you are a worrier like me. It streamlines finances so you don't have to think about things so much.

I reset my automatic savings plan at ING to divert funds to my long-term savings. So now I am saving 30% of my income through my 457 plan and long term savings, when calculated using my net income.

Child support is usually saved and then I pull from it as needed for additional expenses such as yearbooks, glasses, parties, etc. (Those are the expenses that have thrown me off lately, with the child support delay).

The rest of my bills continue to be paid online, so no worries there.

So I can put aside the anxiety that I have had lately regarding my finances. The big things have been taken care of, I just have to live on the rest. I'm a big girl, I can figure that out!

I've really enjoying the summer so far. I have been practicing my Spanish consistently using Rosetta Stone. I have also been teaching myself to sew on a machine, it is a lot of fun! I finished one project for my classroom, a weighted lap pad. I'm pretty proud of it, for my first project.

My girls seem pretty happy with their summer. They are spending lots of time in the water and getting lots of time with their dad, which they missed while he was active duty and deployed so much.

Birthday party was a success

July 22nd, 2012 at 05:09 am

Even though it rained steadily, and our pool party had to turn into a house party at the last hour, my daughter had an awesome 13th birthday party! The house looked great, just some simple decorations and glow sticks. The pizza was the most expensive, because I bought so many, and we bought my daughter's favorite, not the cheapest. But we gave out leftover pizza and froze the rest. A friend of ours told us that if you freeze pizza, and just reheat it in the oven, it tastes fine.
I really enjoyed making my girl happy with a simple party with her closest friends. She can be so sweet and you could tell by looking at her that she was having a great time. xoxo

Savings is pretty dry

July 19th, 2012 at 04:49 am

I went ahead and paid summer camps, birthdays and travel out of savings, instead of the credit card. That way I can continue to put money in savings each paycheck instead of sending it to the credit cards. My savings is intended for the things that don't come up every day. I guess I do have a short-term savings account that will flow up and down (this is the account that I will have $5,000 saved by December). I also have my long-term savings which I will transfer most of the cash to when it hits $5,000. Then the plan is to start saving in the short-term account again.

Savings will get back up to speed again, though. Child support has been an issue lately, that has impacted my finances the most. All bills and expenses are still covered, but I have little left over to save. With the paycheck on the first, though, I should be back to saving something each paycheck.

My first moonlighting check

July 13th, 2012 at 02:25 am

I only worked a couple hours at the end of June, so I have my first check: $50.63 that was automatically deposited into my online savings account. I also have mileage and cell phone reimbursement coming my way in a separate deposit.

My savings account is basically treading water at this point because I have tuition for my 2nd out of 5 courses to repay. Instead of putting $275 in savings each paycheck I will only put $50. Then I will put $225 on my 0% credit card each paycheck until the tuition is paid off, should be 2 months. Then I will put that money back to savings. So my little part time job will be a little extra in my savings account for now.

Savings updates

July 6th, 2012 at 05:10 am

I added $15 to the cruise fund after selling a textbook, getting close to the deadline!

I also updated personal savings to $6,443. Getting there, slowly, but surely!

I work a few hours this morning at the part time job and then I have the rest of the day off. I haven't gotten a paycheck from the new place yet. It will be automatically deposited into my ING account, so I won't have to touch it at all.