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Letting go of a dream

October 9th, 2008 at 12:09 am

I've decided to definitely NOT buy a Vespa next spring as planned. With private school looming in the not-too-distant future and the economy tanking, I can think of other ways to spend the few thousand dollars that the Vespa would cost.

That decision coupled with the very likely closing of my daughter's current school and our need to relocate her and ourselves has me feeling down in the dumps. Plus, there's the whole economy mess, my debt and the general disarray of the world.

Yeah, I'm really in a great mood today...

On another note, I made $33.33 selling more junk on eBay. See the new Challenge total over there on the left if you're interested.

Real estate "window shopping"

October 6th, 2008 at 01:35 am

We spent the weekend "window shopping" for a new house. We don't necessarily want or need a new house, but as part of the eventual move of my daughter to a private school we will most likely be relocating as well.

Right now, all the schools we're considering are not in this city because this city simply is lacking when it comes to providing educational opportunities for non-traditional learners.

The schools that do cater to non-traditional learners are all in the city where my husband works; so assuming The Midge goes to one of those schools, we will eventually move in order to save commuting costs for both my husband and myself (aka The Midge's personal chauffer...)

Ideally, we'd like to either downsize our mortgage or simply do an even swap. I was pleasantly surprised to find that this is very doable. I was afraid all the houses in the other city would be way over our price range. But we did find a few that could work.

Of course, we will be giving up a lot of space, but I'm actually OK with that. I don't particularly like having a huge yard and house, and the thought of unloading at least half my belongings is oddly cathartic.

For now, my husband and I have decided to just keep visiting schools and occasionally checking the MLS so we can keep an eye on home prices. Then, by February we'll hopefully know where The Midge will be going next year and we can move forward with the house hunting.

On another note, I'm adding $29.26 to the challenge, so my new total is $12,859.89.

Of today's addition, I'm putting $6.76 toward the Vespa fund, so the new total there is $292.51.

Rethinking the Vespa

October 3rd, 2008 at 06:11 pm

Yes, I'm having doubts about buying the Vespa next spring. Not because I don't want it anymore, but because I'm thinking that money will be better spent elsewhere.

We are thinking of speeding up my daughter's move to private school because the combination of her learning differences and the public school situation here is not getting any better.

Also, even if we don't move her to private school next year, I'm thinking I would like to either pay cash for our next car or make a very large down payment.

For now, though, I'm just going to keep saving away for the Vespa helmet and rearview mirrors....

On that note, I'm adding $90.96 to the challenge. Of that, $7.38 is going toward the Vespa fund. Here are the new totals:

Challenge: $12,830.63
Vespa: $285.75

Quick check in

September 26th, 2008 at 12:11 am

Shipped more eBay stuff, so I'm adding $19.66 to the Challenge and Vespa funds. The new totals there are:

Challenge: $12,694.17

Vespa: $278.37

My daughter got a coupon for free ice cream at Baskin Robbins for her birthday and we also got a 2 for 1 coupon there in the paper last week, so we're going out for ice cream tonight after eating the chicken dinner I made in the Crock Pot. (Chicken that's been in my freezer forever, but good chicken nonetheless....)

A tempting offer, but I'm not falling for it....

September 23rd, 2008 at 07:08 pm

Today is a fund-raiser night at a local restaurant to benefit my daughter's school. I don't particularly care for the food there -- plus I already planned to cook tonight -- so I've decided the school will get over our NOT being there.

This morning I had to go to the doctor for a biopsy thing I have to get done twice year. The doctor was "concerned" that he didn't get a good enough sample and suggested I might need to come back in two months for another biopsy. I happened to be in excrutiating pain at the moment that he said this and suggested he might want to refund my $30 copay if he didn't do his job "right." He didn't think it was that funny... .

After the not-so-fun doctor visit, I stopped off at the post office to ship off a jacket that I sold on eBay, so I'm adding $9.54 to the challenge and to the Vespa fund. My new totals are:

Challenge: $12,674.51

Vespa: $258.71

Mo' money

September 10th, 2008 at 07:57 pm

Got more eBay stuff shipped off today, so I'm adding $17.93 to the Challenge and Vespa funds. The new totals are:

Challenge: $11,806.97

Vespa: $249.17

I need to get more stuff posted on eBay, but don't know if I'll get around to it this week.

Also on my to-do list this week is to get my flex pay stuff submitted, so I get reimbursed for the glasses and contacts. My plan is to drag my husband out with me Friday to pick new glasses, then submit the flex pay stuff over the weekend.


I splurged and ate Taco Bell for lunch today since I was out and about running errands. I've been really good about eating lunch at home every day (yummy, homemade leftovers from the night before). But because I didn't cook last night, I decided one lunch out was more than reasonable -- especially since I hadn't spent any of my personal expense account money this week.

I am jacked up on too much Pepsi now, though, and I'm having a hard time focusing on my work for the booming business so next time I might rethink the "run for the border."

eBay sales and cereal deals

September 10th, 2008 at 01:00 am

Sold and shipped a couple of my daughter's outfits. My "share" was $8.88, which I'm putting toward the Challenge, so the new total is $11,789.04.

I had to take some money out of the Vespa fund -- not for a Vespa tire, but for something else that I hadn't budgeted for -- so my adjusted total there is $231.24.

I had to get my eyes examined and order a year's supply of contacts today, so I spent $310, which I'll be reimbursed for from my flexible spending account. I also need to order new glasses for those times that I can't wear my contacts. I'll be doing that later this week after I recover from writing the check for the contact lenses....

On a good note, I took advantage of this deal and got four boxes of Kashi for $1.

Dragged myself to the post office and...

August 21st, 2008 at 05:58 pm

Mailed the eBay stuff, so I'm adding $190.59 to the Challenge, which brings my total to $11,404.99.

Of that money, $158.14 is going to the Vespa fund, so I'm now up to $297.79 and think I might be able to buy a tire now.

I'm still feverish and generally yucky all over, but I'm struggling to get some work done for the booming business today so I can go back to bed.

The only reason I left the house today is because the lunch lady sent my daughter home from school with a stamp saying she only had one lunch left on her account. Since I just wrote a check for lunches Monday and she's only eaten one lunch at school since she went back Tuesday, I figured she either bought lunch for her whole class or there was a huge mistake.

Rather than try to deal with it over the phone, I drove The Midge to school this morning and paid a visit to the lunch lady, who explained she just hadn't entered the check I wrote Monday into my daughter's account. Kind of ticked me off since I was on the verge of passing out and a school cafeteria was last on my list of places I wanted to be....

Sold more on eBay and got a check in the mail

August 19th, 2008 at 02:50 am

Sold and shipped some more eBay stuff, and Pinecone sent me a check so I'm adding $22.60 to the challenge (but only $19.60 to the Vespa fund since I have other plans for that Pinecone check).

The new totals are:

Challenge: $11,214.40

Vespa fund: $139.65

The Midge heads back to school tomorrow. I'll be sad to see her go, but might be able to get more work for the booming business done with her gone most of the day.

I'm limiting my volunteering this year to Thursday afternoons, so hopefully that will save me time and money (in the form of gas).

I also discovered a store three doors down from the Midge's karate place sells my favorite tea, which I usually buy at Whole Foods every couple weeks. The price is comparable, but I'll be saving even more money on gas by eliminating the drive to Whole Foods.

Challenge addition

August 17th, 2008 at 09:18 pm

I shipped off three old phones that sold on eBay last week and after shipping and fees I made $109.74, which I'm adding to the challenge.

I'm only adding $87.14 of that money to the Vespa fund, though, because I put the rest into my general savings account. (Slowly, but surely, I'm going to build it back up after the huge vet bill....)

So my new totals are:

Challenge: $11,191.80

Vespa fund: $120.05

Sad little addition to the challenge

August 11th, 2008 at 10:30 pm

I sold two shirts for 99 cents each on eBay today. After shipping and fees, I made $1.63, which I'll put toward the challenge and Vespa fund. The new totals are:

Challenge: $11,082.06

Vespa fund: $32.91

Challenge money and time for a clock

August 10th, 2008 at 10:37 pm

I gave in and bought an alarm clock to replace the one fried last week. I was holding out, but in reality it was driving me mad not being able to see what time it was from my side of the bed so I went to Best Buy and bought one for $24. Nothing fancy beyond REALLY BIG numbers.

I sold one of my daughter's sweaters on eBay today and after shipping and fees I made $9.55, so that brings my challenge total to $11,080.43 and the Vespa fund to $31.28. (I think I might have enough to buy a spark plug for the Vespa now....)

I have a bunch of other eBay auctions coming to a close this week, though, so those amounts should change quickly.

Challenge addition, and other odds and ends

August 5th, 2008 at 06:43 pm

I sold a pair of my daughter's shoes on eBay. After shipping and PayPal fees, I made $9.78 to put toward the challenge and the scooter fund. So:

Challenge Total: $11,070.88

Vespa Fund: $21.73

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My dog came home from the vet today. She's incredibly perky considering she had major surgery yesterday. The vet showed me the stones they took out of her and it's amazing she didn't have symptoms earlier. All the stones combined were the size of my fist, which is the exact size of her little bladder.

She'll be on antibiotics for the next 2 weeks and is now on a special doggie diet, but otherwise seems just fine.

I transferred the money to cover the surgery this morning. It was money well spent as far as I'm concerned.

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I'm still waiting for the gym manager to call me back to discuss why they haven't been debiting my checking account for my monthly membership fees. I called him again today and he was in, but his computer wasn't on to access my records so he was going to call me right back. That was three hours ago....

You would think that if someone is willingly calling you to give you money, then you'd call them back as soon as possible.

I'm think I'm about done with "doing the right thing" here.

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I am now taking my daughter out to the garage to paint 18 birdhouses that we got for $20 from Oriental Trading Company. My plan is to let the little Picasso go at it using some old paint and brushes I have from various past projects. Then she's going to give each of her uncles and aunts a birdhouse for Christmas.

Made money on eBay

July 30th, 2008 at 01:10 am

I sold one of my daughter's toys on eBay today and after shipping costs and fees, I made $11.95. I'm adding this to the challenge, so my new total is $11,061.10.

More importantly, this marks the beginning of my Vespa fund, which I'm now tracking over there on the left.