Exhaustion

Work is so exhausting.  I thought last year that it would eventually slow down, however, it has not.  I work a lot and am getting very tired of it.  For the past month, I have refused to go to work on weekends because my kids have soccer games every Saturday and I literally have to be up before 7 since 99% of their games start at 8:30 and it is non stop until about 5PM.  Add in that I’m at work by 6:00 AM everyday and often times don’t leave until 5 or 6PM, well, you get the picture – I’m extremely exhausted.
With this exhaustion, I have slacked big time on working out.  I am just too tired.  I hate excuses.  I hate them.  I shouldn’t be this tired all the time, yet I am.  I know a big part of it is stress and another part of it is the fact that I’m not running to counter the stress.  I haven’t ran in about a month.  Sigh.  I am going to make myself go running tomorrow.

On the money front, I have still been bringing coffee from home and packing my lunches every day. Actually, I’ve been packing breakfast, snacks and lunch because I’m there so long.  Even though I haven’t been working out consistently I have still been eating pretty healthy.  I pack my lunches every Sunday night and literally just grab each morning.  The only thing I have to do is make my latte and I’m good to go in the morning.  For a really lazy person like me, this is a Godsend.  Thursday is my pay day and I’ve already written all my checks and will mail them all out tomorrow.   I know everyone gives me a hard time about checks but after a lot of bad luck with auto deductions on everything except my mortgage and car insurance, I’d rather just write my checks and be completely and totally old fashioned.

Have a great night everyone.

PS, I’m fixing the side bars but having problems and those numbers are not accurate.

Advertisements

Sunday Night Ramblings

My life has been so hectic and crazy lately and I literally have been catching sleep when I can.  I slept the moment I got home on Friday (6PM all the way until 6AM Saturday).  Fortunately, I was able to spend the day with my sister and mom today at Pike Place Market. The weather was so beautiful in Seattle today. When it’s nice up here you have to take advantage of it because it could start raining within the hour or the next day and keep raining for weeks on end.   I bought my mom a bouquet of flowers as an early Mother’s Day gift.  My babygirl in turn bought me a bouquet.  It was nice to be outside and not in the library studying or at work working.

Speaking of which, the past 2 weeks have been hell.  I worked so much that I couldn’t study for my test and I did horrible.  On top of all that, my husband is not driving me crazy.  He is not helping out as much as I want around the house, which coupled with all my stress is making me very irate.  I want him to start looking for a job right away and what is he doing? Nothing. Nothing at all.  He says he can’t interview because he’s working.  In order to get an interview, you need to apply.  Which he has not done. At all.  The job market is still very tough out there and the fact that he’s not actively looking really makes me worried.  To make matters even more irritating, he just now asked me if we can use his severance and take the kids to Disneyland, which would cost us about $7,000.  Is he freaking crazy?!  He told me that we will have his unemployment and the severance. UM.  That unemployment, dear husband, is going to help us pay the bills.  He’s killing me right now. Before you all ask, we are NOT going to Disneyland. Ridiculous to even say out loud.

I found out last week from my boss that my promotion was signed off by big boss lady.  It is going to HR for review & finalization of salary on the 16th.  I should know for sure on or about May 18.  Fingers crossed for me.  I’m told that the raise is going to be fantastic.  I think my hubby knowing that my raise is right around the corner has him feeling slightly laid back about our financial situation.  A huge part of me wants to tell him that I didn’t get the promotion/raise and that I won’t get it until the next promotion round, which is in September.  Another part of me feels like we are adults and we shouldn’t keep anything from each other.  I’m really conscious of our money situation and I don’t want things to get bad again.  Like I said, he is driving me crazy at the moment.

There is a bit more good news on the horizon. Our Visa is almost paid off.  Current balance is $1,428.81.  Another $650 will be thrown at it this Thursday, a balance of $778.81 which I am hoping I will also be able to send this week.  I worked 25 hours of overtime in the last 2 weeks and that should net me an extra $1,000 on my paycheck.  After this is paid off, we will start saving all of DH’s remaining paychecks so we have even more in savings just in case.  We’ll be paying the minimum on everything (student loans/line of credit) until we find DH another job.

I’m off to bed because I know this week is going to be super busy again.

Commitment

I’ve had a lot of time to think the last week or so about our money situation.  To say that stress makes things worse for me is an understatement. 2011 started out as a very bad year for us.  We had a lot of marital problems, which lead to family problems, which also lead to our friends being super judgemental about our entire situation. Add to that the insane hours I was working and all the stress that went with it…it was a recipe for disaster. I stopped tracking what we were spending.  I stopped using coupons at the grocery store.  I stopped paying attention to our money and that is never a good thing.

I can sit here and kick myself for this past year or I can ask myself, “What can I do moving forward?” I chose to the latter.  I can’t sit and mope about spilled milk, I can only wipe it up and take precautions to prevent another spill. I started going through and reading all of my favorite pf bloggers and a post that Anna wrote on what she’s learned in the past 2 years on her blog at www.andthenshesaved.com really motivated me.  I CAN GET OUT OF DEBT.  I just have to focus and commit and most importantly be consistent.  

Yesterday, I sat and re read the Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey.  It is a fantastic book and it really motivated me (again) to begin this journey of paying off our debts and saving money.  I am going to be following his plan for the most part on this journey with a few deviations.  In his plan, he wants you to stop contributing to your 401(k) until the debt is paid off.  I just can’t do that because I would be giving up 8% matched contributions from my employer and Mr. would be giving up 6% of free money.  I had planned on increasing our contributions next year but will hold it steady at the moment.  For those of you who are unfamiliar with is Baby Steps, it’s as follows (from his website www.daveramsey.com)

Baby Step 1

$1,000 to start an Emergency Fund

An emergency fund is for those unexpected events in life that you can’t plan for: the loss of a job, an unexpected pregnancy, a faulty car transmission, and the list goes on and on. It’s not a matter of if these events will happen; it’s simply a matter of when they will happen. Learn more

Baby Step 2

Baby Step 2

Pay off all debt using the Debt Snowball

List your debts, excluding the house, in order. The smallest balance should be your number one priority. Don’t worry about interest rates unless two debts have similar payoffs. If that’s the case, then list the higher interest rate debt first. Learn more

Baby Step 3

Baby Step 3

3 to 6 months of expenses in savings

Once you complete the first two baby steps, you will have built serious momentum. But don’t start throwing all your “extra” money into investments quite yet. It’s time to build your full emergency fund. Learn more

Baby Step 4

Baby Step 4

Invest 15% of household income into Roth IRAs and pre-tax retirement

When you reach this step, you’ll have no payments—except the house—and a fully funded emergency fund. Now it’s time to get serious about building wealth. Learn more

Baby Step 5

Baby Step 5

College funding for children

By this point, you should have already started Baby Step 4—investing 15% of your income—before saving for college. Whether you are saving for you or your child to go to college, you need to start nowLearn more

Baby Step 6

Baby Step 6

Pay off home early

Now it’s time to begin chunking all of your extra money toward the mortgage. You are getting closer to realizing the dream of a life with no house payments. Learn more

Baby Step 7

Baby Step 7

Build wealth and give!

It’s time to build wealth and give like never before. Leave an inheritance for future generations, and bless others now with your excess. It’s really the only way to live! Learn more

Technically, we are on Baby Step #2 because we have the $1,000 but I don’t feel comfortable with anything less than $5,000 in the bank, so that’s where we are going to concentrate on first.  I think we should be able to reach this goal by the end of February. Once we reach our goal of having $5,000 in a mini emergency fund, I’m going to pay down our debts starting from the smallest balance.

When things get super cluttered at home & work, I tend to want to put my head in the sand  and that causes so many problems for me.  I have got to get and stay organized, so out comes the lists to keep me on track:

  1. I’m going to be spending most of the next 2 days organizing our office.
  2. And making a list of everyone we owe money to.
  3. Then, update the sidebar totals.
  4. Then, I’m going to go through the last 3 months of bank statements via quicken and categorize where our money went.  This will help me plug up where I need to eliminate spending. I already know that eating out and groceries are going to be up there.  As well as buying gifts since September through January it seems like everyone in our families have birthdays.
After reading how Anna started her journey, I think I need to make a list of what I can spend money on and if things aren’t on this list, oh well, too bad.  No buying.
Mandatory Spending:
  1. Mortgage
  2. Car Payment
  3. Car Insurance
  4. Daycare
  5. Groceries
  6. Utilities
  7. Gym Membership
  8. Gas for cars
  9. Hair cut & color.  I have kray kray hair and I have tried to go cheaper but end up looking even more kray.  My hair lady is expensive but worth it.
  10. Various school activities for kiddies
  11. Birthdays for the kids only. Sorry friends and other family members, we just can’t afford it anymore!
I. CAN. DO. THIS. Baby Steps.  That’s all.  Just Baby Steps.

Work. Life. Balance.

Let me preface this post with the fact that I normally love my job because it’s challenging and I am learning new things all the time. However, the past 3 months I have been slammed at work.  Slammed as in 10 minute lunches, working from 6:45 to 10:30 at night and then still have 800+ emails to go through, phone ringing off the hook while people are standing at my desk asking me about said 800 emails.

I am going through a lot of turmoil at work at the moment.  My company decided that they needed to turn every department upside down, shake it and then put everything back in different places.  I lost the best boss I’ve ever had and was placed with a woman who micromanages everything to the point of documenting what my coworkers and I do every second of everyday. It’s enough to make me scream.  I’ve always said that it’s not the work, it’s the people because honestly, work is work.  As demanding and challenging my job, my coworkers and my old boss made it all so much fun.  It makes me so sad that with a few people’s rash decisions, the entire department has been turned upside down. Sometimes I wonder if the people on top really see how their decisions affect things.  The major thing they destroyed was the relationships people had with one another. The department I work in was once the best place to be.  People stayed in their positions for 20+ years.  Now, just in the past 3 months I’ve seen several key managers, experienced mentors flocking out the door at rapid speeds.  It just makes me so sad.

In the past 3 months, I’ve worked an extra 200 hours. At no extra pay.  None. Nada. Zilch. In fact, this past Saturday I  put in another 8 hours and stayed about 3.5 hours late tonight.  I’m mentally exhausted and don’t feel the joy I use to because I have the boss from hell who has turned my job into a clusterf*ck of irrational emotions.

I will get out of this funk – whether I leave the department or just suck it up and find a way to deal with her.  Until then, I’m running and just trying to enjoy the days I do have off.

Hell Yeah!!!!

I’ve been obsessed with saving money.  We have a credit card balance of $5,500 that I haven’t been really focusing on paying down because our goal was to have at least $5,000 in our savings account as a buffer first.  Well, today we’re there!  We currently have a balance of $5,142 in savings.

  • Current Baby Emergency Fund: $1,000
  • Savings Account: $ 3111

Added the following deposits today:

  • $250 regular savings transferred from DH’s check
  • $300 regular savings transferred from my Check
  • $329 Cash Gift from FIL
  • $152 Left over cash in old account

Total Deposit to Savings: $1,031

I am over the moon happy!  When I fist made up my mind to start getting serious about saving money it was very hard for me not to move money around.  Slowly, but surely I started to get used to not having that money in checking.  One thing I found to be very helpful was to make my savings automatic. Meaning, our payroll people deposit $625 into savings and deposit the remaining balance into our checking account.  It sucked at first to see how small my check was but then I’d click to the savings tab and viola!  The balance has been growing and today we hit $5,000!

Moving forward, we need to focus on paying off that credit card and tackling my student loans. I don’t think I can apply the entire $625 every pay check to our debt because I do want to continue with the good savings habit.  I might only save $300 per paycheck until our debt is paid off.  We’ll see what the Mr. says, but for now HALLELUJAH!!!!!!

Do You Hold Grudges?

This isn’t finance related but something someone said to me today triggered me to write about grudges.  You see, I am not proud to admit this but I can hold a grudge.  In person, I am very outgoing and love hanging out with my friends and .  Once you are my friend I I treat you like you’re family.  If you needed help, I would drop everything I’m doing to help you.  I’m super affectionate towards my family and friends, and I am usually happy all the time.  However on the flip side I don’t hide my emotions well.  If I am happy, you know it.  If I’m sad you can see it on my face.  If I’m angry you can tell in my eyes.

With that said, once you do something to hurt me, I am ruthless. I will cut you out of my life. I’m not rude or anything like that however the warmth that I exude towards my friends and family disappears.  I guess you can say that I become very polite and standoffish.  Only 2 people in my whole life has ever made me angry and though what they did to me happened a year or two ago and they have apologized, I still cannot fully forgive. Or treat them as I once use to.  I see a counselor once a week and this comes up often for me.  I want to forgive people but it’s like once you screw me over, I can’t forget it.

Anyone else feel this way? Or did you figure out a way to forgive, let go and move on?