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Archive for August, 2004

Cards

August 31st, 2004 at 07:56 pm

So I went card shopping on my lunch break and spent what I believe to be, too much money - especially for gift bags. They would be so simple to make with some glue and twine, or ribbon.

I'm kicking myself that I didn't get on the ball sooner, and make my own gift bags. It's eomething that I can do on rainy/snowy days though when I'm feeling crafty.
I'll put it on my looooooong to-do list.

Wedding gifts

August 31st, 2004 at 01:07 pm

I'm leaving for Europe on Friday, for an in-law's wedding. This is a second marriage for the bride, and two households are combining so they already have duplicates of everything. Not quite sure what to get them....

I did buy matching frames with a wedding dress and tux hanging on it, for their desks at work. I'm not sure if this is enough - we've already spent a ton on the plane tickets.

Still need to buy some cards today too on my lunch hour. There goes all my spending money!

Pasta

August 30th, 2004 at 02:44 pm

I could espouse on the greatness of pasta for hours. I make it at least once a week, and I'm always able to make it with ingredients that are on sale.

A month or two ago crushed tomatoes were on sale for $0.39 each, so I bought 10 cans! I never pay for than fifty cents for a pound of pasta either. We're a bit snotty about our pasta, only Barilla for us!

Last night we made a double batch of pasta sauce and had some for dinner. Today's lunch is pasta, and I've frozen the rest of the sauce for later. We put on some music, did some dicing and made a date out of it.
Pasta is so romantic.

Weekend fun

August 27th, 2004 at 12:55 pm

Tomorrow is supposed to be humid and in the 90s. We've only had two days in the 90s this summer - it's been pretty mild.

I did some internet research yesterday and found a nice beach that only charges $8 - far cheaper than my favorite beach which costs $22 to park. They're both in state reservations, so it's clean and underdeveloped i.e - my kind of relaxing place.

Sunday will be cooler, so it's back to scraping paint off of my house. Everytime I'm out there exerting elbow grease, I think of the article from the Tightwad Gazette in which Amy says that scraping paint off her front porch is more enjoyable than a trip to Bermuda. Until I have my school loans and mortgage paid off, yes I'd rather scrape paint. But once I'm debt free - I'm heading to Bermuda!!

Focus groups rock!

August 26th, 2004 at 06:12 pm

Just got back from a focus group. It's the first real one I've done. I was chosen for one, and showed for it a few months ago, but didn't have to give any input. They overbooked, and I still got paid. Wahoo!!

About six months ago I signed up with all of the market research companies in my area, and the dividends are just starting to show for it.

If you live near a metropolitan area, definitely check it out. A relaxed way to make some extra spending money.

Utility Success!

August 26th, 2004 at 12:56 pm

Hurrah!

Not only did I successfully cancel part of my cable bill yesterday, but the cable company informed me they offer phone services as well and can give me a better rate for being an existing customer!

I'll have to pull out my old bills, but I'm calculating a $15ish savings a month. Sometimes, things just work out for the best!

It's very gratifying when things like this happens. Sometimes I feel like I'm depriving my family of so many things when we look at the Joneses and feel guilty. I know that I shouldn't as they're up to their ears in debt, and it's mostly a facade. Ah well, second guessing yourself doesn't get you anywhere. I know that I'm making life better in the long run. No instant gratification here.

And yes - I can keep my existing phone number! If you haven't spoken with your utility companies in awhile and you're a good customer, give them a call to see what new plans they offer. They wouldn't want to lose your business, right? Play a little hardball.

Utilities

August 25th, 2004 at 01:36 pm

Today's Saving Money Challenge came at a great time. I just got my husband to agree to get rid of some cable channels, to bring our cable bill down by $7 a month. He's from Europe - and in the height of the European soccer championships this spring/summer, he ordered this package deal so he could see the games.
Well, now that the championship is over, there's no reason to keep it!
(Side note: I had to bargain for this one. I promised if we got rid of it, I'd stop baking our own bread, and buy some at the grocery store. )

Back to the Challenge - my current phone company didn't even come up on the list from www.LowerMyBills.com! I'm definitely calling around today. Not sure if I'd have to change my number if I switched companies though. That could be a major hassle.

Introduction

August 24th, 2004 at 06:01 pm

Hello fellow frugalists! Welcome to my saving/budgeting/spending wisely online journal. I live in New England with my husband and two cats. We bought a beautiful fixer-upper Victorian about a year and a half ago; which is where a lot of our money has been sunk recently. This on top of college loans have been driving me bonkers (although I've always been careful with money), so I've been ravenously reading everything on this subject. My first teacher was Amy Dacyzyn, and what a great place to start! I took the complete edition of all three Tightwad Gazette's out of the library, and read it in its entirety in 2 evenings. I'm hooked!
Hopefully you'll learn something from me, as I've been learning from you. Keep up the great journals!


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