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Archive for February, 2008

I Caved

February 27th, 2008 at 01:17 pm

After some discussion with dh, I decided to give teaching another try. This time around the money will go into savings and not into paying down debt. I rearranged some other obligations and will be teaching four days again. This time both classes will be the same, which translates into half the work for the same pay.

I should be guaranteed this job until the group finishes. Apparently many of the students were waiting to see if I would teach before they signed up for the class. If nothing goes wrong, we should be able to exceed our savings goals for 2008 and give me a good $20 challenge total at the end of the year.

Now that I know what to expect I think things will be better. I will also be able to plan more to keep the house running smoothly with dh's help, of course.

Tax Refund Deposited

February 20th, 2008 at 02:58 pm

I was very excited to find our federal refund money in the bank account today. I transferred all of it over to one of the loans. Now if the state money would hurry up and hit the bank, we could be debt free by the first week of March. Since we are so close, I am getting antsy to pay it off. I am not a patient person, but I can wait a few more weeks.

The Budget

February 18th, 2008 at 03:40 pm

I love that I can view dh's paycheck online several days before he receives. I use Excel to do a monthly budget. In Dave Ramsey fashion I designate where the money will go before we get it.

We are getting a bit more breathing room since we have been doing this almost a year. I was able to up our eating out fund a bit. I am trying to up the amounts going into our Life Happens accounts (car repair, medical, dental, etc). This is another area to focus on when the debt is paid off.

My question is: do you consider your emergency fund to cover serious emergencies or "life happens" type of things? I am thinking that the emergency fund should be for dh losing his job or being out of work for an extended period. I guess that is my reason for wanting to totally leave it alone and using our "Life Happens" account for more minor stuff. I was curious what other people think though.

Another Debt Update

February 16th, 2008 at 09:07 am

I made another change to the debt balance since the second loan payment posted. This total should change dramatically in about three weeks. Still, I am pleased with the progress we have made so far this year.

Job is Almost Over & Odds and Ends

February 15th, 2008 at 02:55 pm

Technically my job should be over, but I ended up getting an extra day. I will get a large paycheck at the end of this month. The last day's pay will not arrive until the end of March. By that time the final paycheck should go into savings.

We are expecting our tax refund in a couple of weeks. It will go toward the debt. If the state refund comes quickly we can be out of debt by the end of March. If not it will be April, but the end is definitely in sight.

We need to build back up our household accounts (medical, dental, clothing, etc) after some spending the past couple of months. The plan is to do this while we are saving for the other three goals.

Now that the job is almost over I am looking forward to being here more often. I have missed reading everyone's posts. I do feel for all of you who are sick. I have finally gotten over the flu and am hoping to stay healthy the rest of the winter.

Flu and Another Job Offer

February 7th, 2008 at 03:26 pm

My current teaching job is helping me get closer to being debt free, but it also gave me the FLU. Many of the students and other staff have been sick. I had made it through 3 1/2 weeks with only 1 1/2 weeks to go without catching anything. Tuesday night I had a sore throat. Wednesday I added a cough. Today I woke with a 101 degree fever and generally felt like crap. Fortunately I got in at the doctor's office. He said I went in early enough that I should recover quickly. I got a shot of antibiotics, antibiotic pills, cough syrup, and Tamiflu. That set us back close to $140 total.

I know I could catch the flu anywhere, but that pretty much sealed the "not teaching credit classes again" decision. I did get a much better offer from another department at the college. I will be looking into teaching continuing education classes. These will be short-term (one to two sessions) in a more relaxed atmosphere and generally just more fun. The first one I am considering is a digital photography class. Basically this is exactly what I wished for yesterday - easy money with no long term commitment.

When It Rains.....It Pours Job Offers

February 6th, 2008 at 02:18 pm

I know there are many people who are earnestly searching for a job. I am not one of them, and yet I cannot seem to escape the job offers. I did accept the one for my current teaching job, which ends next week. This job was a quick way to get out of debt ahead of our goal date. Since then I have been offered several private tutoring jobs. Monday I received a call offering me a part-time job as a piano instructor.

It does provide quite a dilemma. By taking any number of these jobs, we could quickly increase our savings. On the other side is the fact that dh prefers me being a housewife, and I tend to agree. We pay our bills just fine and once we pay off the debt in a month or so can focus on saving. Also during the four weeks I have been teaching the house has fallen into chaos. Dh does help out, but he is overwhelmed by the things I do every day.

At first glance working might seem like a good thing, but realistically we are better with me staying home. I think I will stick to short-term, easy money jobs.

Some part of me still feels guilty for passing up a good job offer. Then I remember I love being a housewife and it is all okay.

Challenge Addition & A Bit of Rambling

February 5th, 2008 at 04:27 pm

I received a paycheck for two days worth of teaching. The rest of the money will be on one check at the end of this month. My new challenge total is $322.05.

I had a long day at work and doing other things, but I packed a lunch and snacks so I had no spending. I had planned to pick up a sale item at the grocery store, but it was out of stock. I did get a rain check and will pick this up next week.

Due to student absences in the classes I am teaching, a makeup day has been scheduled. I will work another four hours after the regular coursetime is over. That will be an extra $50 for much less work as it will be for six or eight students rather than 25.

I have more to blog about but do not have the time to write more today. I will save that for another post later in the week.

Still Here - Catching Up

February 2nd, 2008 at 02:25 pm

I had no idea how busy a part-time job would keep me. I received a partial check on Friday, but the big check will arrive at the end of this month. That should wipe out a big portion of the debt which will make the five weeks away from home worthwhile.

I finished our taxes and was surprised by the size of our refund. We will be able to completely pay off the debt and maybe even add a bit to savings with the refund. It will be nice to see that first goal met so we can focus on the remaining goals.

Even with the dropping interest rate, I was thrilled with the interest earned on our house fund through ING. We ended up with more interest in two weeks there than in three months at our bank.

One thing I do want to work on the next two weeks especially is not spending to eat out. I end up getting stuck in town with errands after I finish working. Not eating or waiting to eat is simply not an option for me. I plan to stop by the grocery store for some frozen meals. That way if I get stuck at work later or need to run errands, I have a meal there to eat.

I have not been doing much general shopping though. After walking around a classroom for four hours straight, I have no desire to walk around a store.

If offered this type of job again, I would probably accept. It is tiring, but the money is good. Having done it once I now have a better idea how to pace myself. Plus it would help us reach our goals much quicker.

That is a quick catch up. I have barely even had time to read the other blogs. I do miss that very much as I get a bunch of helpful information and encouragement from all of you here. I hope to be back to blogging more regularly soon.