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2022 Personal and Financial Improvement Plan

December 23rd, 2021 at 06:06 pm

Notice that I did not call it a resolution. I don't like that word, as that makes it sound like a law, but I am not something to be governed, so I am calling it a plan.  My plan is simple

1) Pay down cc #1 to $00.00 by 03/31/2022.

2) Continue to take out cash on payday for my everyday purchases. Ongoing.

3) Continue to eat super healthy through gardening and buying from local farmers. I am stepping up my gardening game to include sweet potatoes and cucumbers.  Also, I plan to grow a few items in the fall and winter next year as cover crops. Ongoing.

4) Contribute any coupons, rebates, or sales savings to credit card payoff and emergency savings. This is a money game I play. Ongoing.

5) Save up for vacation. Target Date (12/15/2022)

All Kinds of Good News

August 22nd, 2020 at 09:20 pm

Hi, everyone.

Yesterday in the mail, we got a refund check. Woo-Hoo!

So, with this refund, I have a plan to put a small amount in DH's savings he uses for video games, etc. With the rest, I plant to pay off a debt and I will save the rest. So, that's one piece of good news. Woo-hoo!

We also got our house painted. Our house is nearly 100 years old, brick, and was somewhat run down when we bought it 10 years ago. So, we have been gradually fixing it up, replacing windows, replacing aged appliances and HVAC, etc. The painters also replaced some cracked mortar. The original brick was a traditional red brick color and it is now painted a light beige. The paint has improved the appearance and we hope the lighter color will help to repel heat in the summer.

I have been successfully accumulating a small stash of canned goods, extra frozen foods, and meats starting about March when the shutdown happened. This has helped up greatly to continue to eat well and stay healthy while not going into debt or having to order everything online. Stores here have been good about keeping most things stocked, but I have not been able to buy paper towels for over a month. So, it's a good thing I stocked up at Big Lots before that.

I have also been putting any extra funds we have onto debts, into savings, or stocking up on extra supplies.

I also bought supplies to donate to the food bank at the college I work at. It breaks my heart to know that college students could have to choose between buying textbooks or eating, so I help students out a little here and there. I check the clearance aisles at the stores and use coupons or sales to buy canned goods, hygiene supplies, and school supplies. Today, I got a package of Bic pens for free because they were on sale for $1.00 and I had a $1.00 coupon for Bic products. I also went to the only thrift store open in my town today where I bought a new, large box of pencils for 50 cents. I will have quite the haul to take to the college food bank on Monday. It feels really awesome to help others, and I actually get a great deal out of it emotionally when I see the look on the face of the workers there when I donate items like canned tuna.

Coronavirus

April 21st, 2020 at 01:48 am

Hi, everyone.

It definitely has been awhile. I believe it has been at least a month since I last blogged. I have been working at home for a little over a month now. Like many others, I am also concerned about my job.

Since we are dealing with this type of situation in one way or another, I was wondering if we could also make a list of our strategies of how we have been dealing with higher food costs, healthcare issues, and loss of income or a job for some. Maybe pooling our ideas would give us all some fresh ideas.

Here is my list of ideas for weathering through the financial side of the coronavirus:

1) putting any savings from not driving so much into savings or towards debts or bills
2) putting any savings from coupons or sales into savings or towards debts or bills
3) planting a garden so that we are less dependent on grocery stores - I also buy some thing direct from farmers
4) doing surveys and putting money towards savings or towards debts or bills
5) working on resume
6) gaining valuable job skills through online learning platforms
7) cashing in rebates and put money into savings or towards debts or bills
8) buy meat on sale and freeze it for later use
9) buy vegetables on sale and chop and freeze it or blanch and freeze it for later use

Do any of you have any ideas?

Ultra Frugal Month and Payday

January 10th, 2020 at 02:56 pm

Well, it's another payday here for me. Whee!!

So, I have already paid all bills due. I have deposited money into savings. I have allocated for the mortgage and car insurance.

I also allocated $100.00 for the upcoming car maintenance to be done early next month. That is part of my UFM Challenge, figuring out how to pay for it without going into debt to do it.

I know I have some pocket change leftover. I am going to use that to pay for part of the grocery bill and make an equal deposit to the UFM Challenge.

I don't know about you, but it is a struggle to maintain ourselves and our stuff. Going into huge debt would be easier on the front end, but I know from being there that the other side is not easy. As they say, "onward and upward!"

And speaking of stuff, I think I will try to declutter my house by getting rid of some stuff I don't need anymore this weekend. What are your plans this weekend?

2019 Progress on Financial Plan and 2020 Financial Plan

December 28th, 2019 at 01:55 am

2019 Financial Plan Progress

1) Purchase a used car with saved funds and tax refund by the end of February. It took me 6 years to accomplish this goal, but I did find a used car in good condition, get it inspected by my mechanic, and get the carfax report.

2)Pay down balance on cc #1 to $2000.00 by December 31st. I did not quite that close, but the number is much better.

3) Continue to eat super healthy by growing some of my own food and buy some at the farmer’s market and stores. I have grown some of my own food and bought some from local farmers.

4) Contribute any coupon or sales savings to credit card payoff. I have redirected sales and coupon savings toward the car savings project, and after buying the car, the credit card.

5) I will also contribute any funds I get from rebates to credit card payoff also. I did the same thing with this that I did with #4.

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2020 Financial Plan

1) Pay down cc #1 to by $1,000.00 by 12/31.

3) Continue to eat super healthy through gardening and buying from local farmers.

4) Contribute any coupon or sales savings to credit card payoff. This is a money game I play.

5) I will also contribute any funds I get from rebates to credit card payoff also.

6) Save up for vacation. (Target 4/30)

7) Save up for work trip. (Target 05/31)

Another Payday in 2019

November 28th, 2019 at 01:21 pm

Hi, everyone.

I have had some significant improvement on the financial improvement front this month. I thought I would not be getting paid until Friday, but I got paid yesterday. I still had $59.11 leftover in checking before getting paid, so I divided it up between house savings and cc1. After adding in my pay, I went to look for my bills to pay. So far, I have paid the electric bill, which is not even due until December 19th! I have also allocated for the mortgage and I will be doing my savings deposit tomorrow. Now, except for groceries and gas, I don't have much else that needs to be paid for. I already paid the gas bill earlier this month, on the 15th. I also already paid the water/sewer bill, but it was not due until December 5th. I will have the phone/internet bill to pay soon. I will be buying some items for donation, including gifts for teenage foster kids, a college students' food bank, and toys for tots, at Black Friday sales. Life is amazing when get enough debt paid off that you don't have a lot of bills to pay. I feel so blessed and thankful for my blessings.

ADDENDUM: I should add that other big progress of note is that I paid off around $300.00 of credit card debt in October and so far around $200.00 in November. I will be doing another $97.62 payment to cc 1 on Friday. Every time I have gotten a bill of any type in October and November I have been able to pay it early by around 2 to 4 weeks. This is really big for me, as I usually wind up paying bills on the payday right before the are due.

Another Payday

November 15th, 2019 at 10:04 pm

Hi, everyone.

Today is my payday, so I have already allocated funds for bills. I have sent money to debt, mortgage, and savings. I sent $50.00 to cc1.

We are also saving money like mad for a couple of house maintenance projects we have coming up. I sent the leftovers of $41.31 from checking to house savings. I also recently received a reimbursement for having attended a work related conference. I had already paid off most of the charges for attending the conference out of checking. That is, except for the hotel bill. After paying off the hotel bill with part of the reimbursement, I sent the balance of $189.06 to house savings. House savings is now at about $1400.

More Progress...

October 24th, 2019 at 05:43 pm

So, I realized today that I can send more money to cc #1, so I sent more.

I am also depositing funds to the car tax/aaa savings, escrow savings, and tax preparation savings.

This completes my savings and debt payoff goals for this month, but because I still have some money left, I will be sending more soon.

More Shopping Today

October 21st, 2019 at 12:30 am

I did some more shopping today for much needed items.

Furnace Filters. I buy our furnace filters online because we have an odd size of 16 x 25 x 2. Hardware stores in my area do not carry this size. The ones I buy are better filters and cheaper by the filter than buying at a store. I bought 4 filters for $47.00.

Supplements. I bought some more supplements online for $47.00.

I will get rebates on all of these because I ordered by going through mrrebates. I also had coupons for most of what I ordered. Woo-Hoo!

Shopping Today

October 19th, 2019 at 08:57 pm

So, my pay raise finally kicked in yesterday and I had a couple of things I have been needing to buy.

One of them is an entertainment center that is open on the back, making it easy to get to cords, etc. Our old unit is an old kitchen cabinet that someone gave to us about 15 years ago! So, one has been ordered and will be here in a week or so.

The second thing I bought was a Serta perfect sleeper memory foam mattress topper. These things are so good that putting one on top of a regular, good mattress is better than buying a really expensive mattress in my opinion. I am sleeping like a baby now and even my chiropractor commented about she could see an improvement.

I also bought groceries, gas, and paid all the regular bills, credit cards, and made savings deposits.

My First Update in Awhile

October 18th, 2019 at 05:48 pm

This is my first update in awhile and I think that was way before the hacking incident.

Today is my payday. Woo-Hoo! The other thing I am celebrating is that my raise has finally kicked in and I have back pay in that paycheck from July to now. Yay! So, for this payday, I have stepped up the debt payoff and savings deposits. I am also planning on buying a couple of things I have been needing for awhile.

That's all for now. Now to make my shopping list. Big Grin

Tax Refund

January 29th, 2019 at 02:10 am

Hi, everyone.

I just went and had my taxes done.

We are getting $1066.00 for our federal return and $118.00 from the state.

These additions alone will bring the car savings up to $7467.08. They said it could take 6-8 weeks to get our return. [Insert frownie face here.] But in the meantime, I will be adding in more to that sum.

As my Grandma used to say, I'm cooking with gas now! Big Grin

Car Savings Increased!

January 28th, 2019 at 10:24 pm

Hi, everyone.

I am making more progress on my plan. I just got a survey payment of $11.35 today. That brings my car savings balance to $6283.08. Woo-Hoo!

2019 Financial Plan Progress

January 25th, 2019 at 01:37 am

I get paid tomorrow. This is my progress of my 2019 Financial Plan.

1) Transferring $80.00 to car savings, bringing the car savings balance to $6251.73. Woo-Hoo!

2) Payment to cc 1 $20.00. I will be paying an additional $93.81 on February 1.

3) Coupon savings and cash paid to grocery bill $11.00. I transferred this amount to car savings and it is included in #1 above.

4) I am also using the money I normally use to pay for mowing in the summer ($50.00 every 2 weeks) towards the car savings until we buy a car. After that, I will pay it towards the credit card. That $50.00 is in addition to what is listed in #1 above.