Wednesday, January 19, 2011

DEAL for TODAY ONLY! My Headstart on Christmas shopping

Well, not really the shopping part...but getting my gift cards lined up and ready to use when I do start. I already have $5 from cashing in Swagbucks so far, but today's deal at LivingSocial is a $20 gift card for only $10.

I probably did 90% of my shopping for the kids at Amazon. You can catch some awesome deals, their service is top notch, and I don't have to fight the crowds. I even caught a great deal on a Wii game last December while I was browsing emails during a continuing education class....and was able to order from my phone and get those coveted hours to keep my license at the same time!

Monday, January 17, 2011

2010 Ending Balance - Chase Card #1

HUGE SIGH! If my readers have all forgotten me, I wouldn't blame them. I am really trying to stay focused on my goals, and spare time is just non-existant!

But I'm home today since schools are closed, and I found a minute to update this balance.

In August, 2009 the balance on this card was $6,698.00

Total paid through December 2010: $1,724.91

Ending balance = $4,973.09

Saturday, January 8, 2011

2010 Ending Balance - Primary Mortgage

So I guess I should get back to getting the loans updated! WOW! I have been so busy, but other than a sick boy it's all good. I've made great progress on getting the office part of my dungeon deep cleaned and decluttered. Still have a long way to go to get the scrapbook/crafting side organized, but I'm loving the progress so far!

This is the mortage on our residence. This loan was refinanced in 2008 with a 4.5% fixed rate, but there are 28 years, 5 months remaining.

In August, 2009 when I started tracking the pile of bills, the balance on this baby was $254,984.88.

Total paid = $ 5,610.84

Balance today = $249,374.04

So glad we've crossed below the 250K threshold, but it still feels strange to know you owe a quarter of a million on your house!!!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

The 2011 Bucket List

I'm listing ALOT here....most of which is not finance related, but life isn't all about finance. And I could have unlimited wealth and still not be satisfied. At least that's what I've been told. LOL

Personal Goals:

Health - Exercise 3 times a week whether it's walking the neighborhood, riding bikes with the kids, or playing Just Dance on the Wii. Make appointments for overdue health exams. Be conscious of finding healthy alternatives when I'm looking for something to stuff in my body.

Time Management - The most recent time-sucker has been playing games on Facebook, so as of yesterday I am only allowing myself online gaming time between 11PM and 6:30AM. If I happen to sleep through the entire time slot, so be it. More likely, I'll be up at 5:30AM like I was today. I just need to know when to make myself stop!!

Family Goals:

Marriage - Continue to work on rebuilding our marriage. We had a pretty rough 2010 (and 2009 for that matter). My husband is working his program one day at a time. I just need to keep working on letting go of resentments and fears.

Children - Be intentional with spending time together. Savor these last few months with my preschooler. He'll be starting kindergarten in just a few short months, and this is precious time never to be regained. My daughter will be turning 9 in just a few days, and it's hard to believe that her time at home before college is almost HALFWAY GONE!!! Make sure I say "yes" more than "no" to building Legos and baking cookies and the endless list of requests.

Professional Goals:

Use our current office remodeling project as incentive to declutter and organize my workspace better. Approach our shift to a paperless environment with a positive attitude instead of the fear that grips my chest. Become more of an expert in IRAs. I'm kind of the go-to gal for pension and IRA questions in our firm, but there is so much more I could learn instead of just knowing where to look it up.

Spiritual Goals:

Continue my journey in Al-Anon. Continue building relationships with others who attend our place of worship. Bite the bullet and take my kids to church even when I'm too worn out, 'cause I always get something out of it. Pray more often.


Over the course of the year, go through every nook and cranny of this entire house including all three attic areas decluttering, deep cleaning and re-organizing. I've already mapped out a schedule and January is the month to tackle the office/craft room which could also be called the dungeon! Work on organizing photos and scrapbook at least 25 pages during the year.


Start over with my goal to fund the Net Worth by $15,000 during the year.

A longtime friend shared this verse on Facebook yesterday. So fitting for the New Year!

Thus says the Lord...."Do not remember the former things, nor consider the things of old. Behold, I will do a new thing, now it shall spring forth." Isaiah 43: 16, 18-19

Saturday, January 1, 2011

2010 Ending Balance - Money Market Loan

Remember this one? It was the one I almost forgot about because it was owed to none other than my Money Market account. I let this one slide for almost 3 years before I started paying myself back....mostly with snowflakes from survey income.

At the start of this blog, the balance was $4,711.50

Total Paid: $ 135.13

Balance today: $4,576.37

That's $135.13 more in my EF than I had before I intentionally started sending those small payments to MY account!

Hey Twenty Eleven! Bring it on!

Happy New Year bloggy friends! I've always loved the change of the calendar...whether it's the beginning of a new week, a new month or especially a new year. Hope rings eternal that things can be better even when they're not so bad as they are. I don't think there's anything wrong with striving to excel, goals to be more than you are today. If you've already reached perfection (which we know is impossible), then your name must be Lord. But I think He wants us to use our talents and our gifts to continually improve our lives and the lives of those around us!

I still haven't written down my 2011 Goals. I'm hoping to find some quiet time today to sit down with this article and put my goals in writing.

I did however check on some accounts this morning and was surprised to find that my 401K has reached pre-market meltdown (in late 2008) levels! I'm still nervous about the market. I think there are still too many time bombs waiting on the horizon, but I don't think pulling out and sitting on the sidelines is the answer either. We just have to ride the storms...and hope the country gets back on a better track of creating jobs and reducing the debt. I'm happy that my 401K and IRAs have crossed the $200K mark ($210,000 actually), but I also know that is not nearly enough for a 48 year old with the debt load I'm carrying.

I hope you're feeling as optimistic about the New Year as I am today! 2010 brought many challenges. I'm hoping that I learned alot and gained some wisdom so that I can more effectively deal with whatever 2011 throws my way! I wish all of you good health and peace in the New Year!