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Just Laundry

February 19th, 2017 at 06:51 am

I did a load of laundry yesterday, and that was my only spending.

I went to my grandson's basketball game in the morning, and in the evening I went to a family dinner -- free pizza, salad and ice cream -- woo hoo! Also got to play euchre, which I don't get to do too often.

I mopped the kitchen and bathroom -- my most hated job. I made some spinach dip, which I will pair with crackers for lunches. Seems like I did more, but the rest was just routine stuff.

I watched two movies on Showtime's freebie weekend -- Big Eyes and 45 Years. Planning to watch more today, even though it is beautiful outside, and I should spend some time walking, too.

I am wondering if I am supposed to work on Monday, since it is Presidents Day. I emailed my boss, but it is her work email, and she hasn't answered. It would be great if I didn't have to go in. I might be able to get by on the gas I have.

Can't Believe It

February 17th, 2017 at 03:17 pm

I just had a feeling I should check my variables entries, and sure enough, there were things I forgot to record. I've actually spent 97% of my budget! In cash, that means I have only $26 to play with. Well, that's mostly going to have to go to gas, so I'm done.

I think I have enough of everything on hand that it won't be a problem; just an annoyance. I sure will be glad to see pay day, though!

So it will be a weekend of sticking around home. I think Showtime is having a freebie weekend, and I have my grandson's last basketball game to attend, so I will have entertainment. The weather has suddenly turned beautiful, so maybe I will take some walks.

I am happy to have a couple of days off, too!

Checking In

February 16th, 2017 at 05:12 am

The package I mailed yesterday cost $12, and I also paid $1.50 to wash my towels. My variables are up to 90%. Seven days to go, with about $73 to spend.

I am still waiting to get paid this year. The museum owes me two checks now. I wish they could get their accounting figured out, but I think the real problem is my boss' boss. She is the one who has to open new budget lines, and it seems she just doesn't get around to it.

If a $1000 check were to come before pay day, I wouldn't have to take any money out of savings to pay my taxes. Of course, I can always reimburse savings when the check comes -- I'd just rather not have to go through the motions.

I had a nice day yesterday. I accomplished one major thing. I fixed my TV! I have Comcast, basic cable, and I was losing stations and getting scrambled pictures on some stations. I Googled the problem, and found that it was a signal problem. I checked and tightened my connections, and then I unplugged my cable box for a few seconds and plugged it back in. Lo and behold, the stations worked, BUT the TV Guide part showed everything as "To Be Announced." I looked up the problem again and learned that the information would populate within 48 hours. True again, it's all back to normal. What did we do before Google?

Valentines Dinner

February 15th, 2017 at 07:02 am

For the second year in a row, my grandsons planned (though did not execute) a Valentine's Day dinner. This time it was strongly influenced by our cruise. They played the part of our cruise waiter very well. They created the menu, too, which was very cute. Actually, they each created a menu. Here is the ten-year-old's:


Main Course
Steak with a side of pineapples and oranges in a bowl and mashed potatoes and asparagus, and of course corn

Strawberry brownie trifle with brownies, strawberries whip cream and a choice of chocolate syrup

Fried shrimp
potstickers (crossed out)

You don't have to choose everything

Here is the seven-year-old's menu:

Valentines dinner

Fried shrimp

Stake with a side of spise and asparagus mash and corn

Strawberry brownie triffle with brownies, strawberries, whip cream, and a choise of chocolate syrup.

Can you stand the cuteness?

They were excellent little servers, as well.

I was startled to receive a Valentine's gift from my DIL (well, supposedly from son, too, but I don't think he did anything but nod approval). They gave me a bracelet and a bag of Intelligentsia coffee. I felt bad I had nothing in return, but they did not seem to expect anything. It has never been our tradition before to exchange gifts on Valentines Day; it's always been just a little gift for the kids.

My non-chocolate lover was very excited about the chewy caramels. The chocolate lover was happy with the chocolate drops. Both seemed befuddled by the Swedish fish, but I think they will enjoy them once they try them.

So, anyway, a lovely night, and now I have a day off!

I'm planning to make fettucine Alfredo. I also have chicken noodle soup to use up, and I'm going to take a container of it to C. Another container went into the freezer. When am I going to learn to make less? Well, I know the reason -- I tend to make whatever amount I have to in order to use up what I'm trying to get rid of.

I'm also going to mail a package to my sister (if I get it boxed up!) Books for her, a shirt for her husband.

I have baby clothes for my niece, but I keep thinking I will visit there and not need to mail them -- have to hurry before the baby grows too big!

And I think I will wash a load of towels. And perhaps even take that "soapy" comforter to the laundromat to get it thoroughly rinsed.

Wow, just filled up my day. But for now, I will focus on getting to the gym.

A No-Spend Day?

February 14th, 2017 at 01:47 pm

I think it's been a no-spend day! Not that I didn't want to! I CRAVED coffee at work, and then, on the way home, I was DYING for something to eat. But I didn't get either one. Drank water at work, and waited until I was home to eat. Which meant waiting until I was done at the gym, and also at the library.

Oh wait. I spent .25 to park at the library. I would say that's unavoidable, but I could have parked free a couple of blocks away, and it's certainly a nice enough day to walk.

But .25 ain't bad.

Free dinner tonight at my son's house. Tomorrow I stay home from work; hoping to get a lot of little chores done.

I earned $23 from Discover this month, so that went on my snowflakes.

My boss let me go early today because she had run out of work for me. I hope this doesn't signal the end of my run. I think she just has to meet with her boss and regroup; prioritize projects and so forth. I'm figuring I'll be needed until the campaign is over, but with contract work, you just never know.

One week to go till pay day. About $85 left in the budget.

Valentine Candy

February 13th, 2017 at 03:47 pm

Well, I stopped at Walgreens and bought little valentine bags, filling one with Swedish fish and caramels, and one with Swedish fish and Hershey's milk chocolate drops. Hope this will make both boys happy. Total cost: $14, even though all the candy was on sale.

Son & DIL are having a Valentine dinner tomorrow night, so I'll deliver them then.

I placed a $50 order from OTC-Essentials. It's a $50 value but I don't pay anything -- it is a benefit of my Medicare plan. This time I ordered baby aspirin, generic Pepsid AC, a bathtub mat, generic Zyrtec and Chapstick.

I went out to lunch yesterday with C, DIL and the grandsons, after the Tae Kwan Do ceremony. We went to Chipotle, and my lunch was $8 -- I took enough home for a second lunch, so that wasn't too bad.

My variables are up to 88%, but only nine days to go.

Sunday Musings

February 12th, 2017 at 08:05 am

Yesterday, in addition to the spending I did at the gas station, and at Target, I spent $3 on laundry.

I baked gingersnaps and made a batch of chicken noodle soup.

Today I am going to my grandson's Tae Kwan Do promotion ceremony. He's getting a new belt! I'm not sure what color. I've kind of lost touch with his progress since they moved his lessons to the school from the Y, and classes are no longer open to family members.

I hope to tackle making scones today. I've never tried making them, but they're one of my favorite things to buy at the museum cafe. Homemade has to be a lot cheaper.

Wondering what to do about Valentine's Day for the grandsons. One has decided he does not like chocolate, so I have to think of something else. Maybe caramels? I can't get my mind around not liking chocolate!

I've got ten days until pay day, and about $110 left to spend to stay within budget. Should be easy enough, but I will have to fill the tank again, and I've made vague promises to eat out with friends, so I'll see whether those plans materialize. Eating out is instrinsically linked with my social life; I think that's just how it is for single people.

Happy Saturday!

February 11th, 2017 at 10:53 am

Yesterday I spent $6 on dental picks. My lower teeth were driving me crazy; I felt like there was plaque stuck between them. I've been working on them, but still feel the plaque. I suppose the picks are not as sharp as the dentist's. Oh well, I think I have improved things, anyway.

The surprising thing is that I have regained feeling in my lower front gums. That area has been numb for years, following oral surgery. The surgeon said the feeling would eventually come back, but it's been more than 15 years! I have stopped expecting improvement for a long time. Weird.

Today I got gas - $24 - and used my $10 Target gift card. I bought cat food and pantiliners and two valentines, and paid just .97.

Later today I'll do a couple loads of laundry and bake some cookies.

I have spent 85% of my variables budget, so I have wiggle room for necessities.

When payday hits, I'll be paying the $1000 auto repair bill as well as my $450 tax payment. Savings will take a hit, unless I get a check from the museum (which is a possibility; it's overdue.) Anyway, I'll be feeling poor, so it will be good to know that I have met the variables budget for two months in a row.

Variables -- the next two weeks

February 9th, 2017 at 05:35 pm

Dinner out was $13. I had budgeted $15, so I was pleased to come in a little under. Especially since I had to pay $1.25 for parking.

I think I will have to fill the gas tank twice, which will cost in the neighborhood of $40.

I will use the Target gift card to buy cat food and pantiliners, for sure. I think all other groceries can be put on hold.

I figure I'll have to spend $6 on laundry.

I can't think of any other necessities that might pop up in the next two weeks. If I hold it down to the above, I'll come in well under 100% on my variables.

Another cup of coffee, another load of laundry

February 8th, 2017 at 05:13 pm

And I also bought a $10 Target gift card for $5 on Groupon. I figure I'll use it for groceries or some other necessity. I will add $5 to my snowflakes.

I worked only four hours today -- we lost the internet for a while, and I cannot do my work without the internet. So I cut the day short. It's almost time to create another invoice anyway.

My variables are at 79%. There are two more weeks in my pay cycle, so I'm definitely running ahead. But I had an $80 medical bill, and a $60 fee to file my taxes, plus a weekend trip and a haircut. I hope I can cut back enough these next two weeks. I do have a restaurant dinner to pay for tomorrow, but I am hoping it will not be too expensive. I shouldn't have to buy much more in the way of groceries (and I'll have the $10 gift card to pay for them) but I will have to buy gas again.

Such is life. Little expenditures add up; little economies add up, too. I have fun trying to hit the right balance.


February 7th, 2017 at 03:47 pm

No spending today except for my usual .71 for coffee, and .25 to park at the library. Oh yes, and $1.50 for a load of laundry. I guess it just really isn't an NSD.

My son and grandsons came over for the leftover pizza last night; DIL was with her mother at the lawyer's. Instead of taking it home, they wanted to stay and eat here, so I pulled some applesauce and celery with blue cheese dressing out of the fridge to make it a meal. And the boys checked out the freezer and found orange sherbet for dessert, which delighted them.

I made plans to have dinner with C on Thursday, and on Friday the two of us will babysit the boys while mom & dad are at a fundraiser. Between her chemo and my fatigue, the two of us together are about equal to one whole babysitter. Smile

I still didn't sleep well last night, so I'm hoping tonight's the night. Right now I feel like I'm sleepwalking.

Got a new catalog from OTC-Essentials, which reminded me I need to order. I get $50 worth of free OTC drugs and other medical supplies every quarter; it's a nice benefit.

Weekend Recap

February 6th, 2017 at 02:28 pm

I got home earlier today. I am so, so tired. I didn't sleep well last night. I am getting so bad about not sleeping when I'm in a strange bed. That is to say, a bed that's not my own. The bed was quite comfortable.

The weekend was great fun. I had lunch with K before I left town at a funky diner kind of place -- spent $12 for a chicken parmesan sandwich with fries. Then I got on the road, and after a few passes finally got on the expressway (roads were torn up, lanes blocked off). I ended up driving around in very scary parts of the city before I was finally sorted out. I was so relieved to get on the skyway.

My days with BFF were spent in our typical fashion. We hit THREE Goodwills. I spent $15 on gifts, $2 on hair gel, $24 on housewares (including a new comforter for my bed) and $54 on clothing. I wasn't expecting to spend so much on clothing, but they were having a half-price sale. I got two pairs of work pants, a blazer, two work tops, leggings, three cardigans, a skirt, and five T-shirts. All in like-new condition. I feel very good about the expenditure.

We also saw two movies ($7 apiece), since it's Oscar season -- "Lion" and "Hidden Figures." Loved both of them. And I spent $56 on eating out, as well as $25 on gas. The eating out included the major portion of a 14-inch pizza which I brought home to give to my son's family, since it's their favorite pizza and it's not available around here (in the land of pizza -- go figure).

BFF gave me a box of books as well as some individual servings of applesauce and a bag of almonds that she isn't going to use. I gave her a big container of raisins, which I had bought and then realized I already had the exact same container, unopened, at home.

It's back to work tomorrow, but I'm glad I had this little holiday.


February 3rd, 2017 at 07:54 am

Just a quickie to say I'll be on the road today to go visit my BFF in Indiana, and won't be checking back in until Monday.

Spent $.71 on coffee yesterday, $3 on a birthday card, and wrote a $60 check to my son for his birthday.

Just spent $3 on breakfast, and I will meet K for lunch, so more money out.

This weekend will involve our typical pleasures of eating out, seeing movies and visiting thrift stores.

Have a great weekend, everyone!


February 2nd, 2017 at 05:29 am

I filed my federal and state taxes yesterday. I have to pay $250 to federal and $199 to state. I knew that the self-employment tax would get me, and this is not too bad. I scheduled withdrawals from the bank for the day after my next payday. I also paid $60 to TaxAct.

No other spending yesterday, but that's enough, isn't it?

I'm always glad to have these big bumps in my budget over with. Since next month's budget will be hijacked by my tax payment, I will do the tune-up on my car the following month. And I also have another getaway coming up, though the dates are not set yet.

Got up this morning realizing that I had no plan for packing my lunch. I did put together something, though -- soup from the freezer, celery sticks with cream cheese and peanut butter, crackers, and a clementine.

Tomorrow I'm heading to Indiana straight from work to spend a couple of days with BFF. I'm going to take my laundry, and therefore won't pack anything but toiletries and underwear. I really have to clean the fish tank tonight, because it's overdue, and shouldn't stew for a couple more days.

I'm going to have lunch with K tomorrow, a Greek restaurant that she recommends, within walking distance of the museum.

Now that I have a 1040 showing a much lower income in 2016 than 2015, I need to take it to the RTA and get a new card for riding the trains. I believe my income is now low enough to be entitled to free transport. Just need to figure out how to do that.

I got a call to work at an upcoming election in my city. I am not going to call back. I make more money at work than I would at the election, and since it wasn't fun last time, I doubt it would be this time.

Hump Day

February 1st, 2017 at 04:50 am

Home today. Wednesday is turning into my typical day off. It started because my DIL sometimes needed me to cover picking up the boys from school. Now I just take it off -- just in case -- and do the errands and such that are not easy to do on the weekend.

Also, I love working for two days and taking a break!

This morning I'm going to get more blood drawn. My cholesterol needs to be checked. I'll dress in my workout clothes and go on to the gym from there. Since I can't eat until the blood is taken, I'll take a muffin and a clementine along, so I won't be tempted to buy breakfast.

The rest of the day I will devote to doing my taxes. I'm a little worried. I made $7K+ extra last year, for which no taxes were withheld. I may end up paying.

I'm also going devote this day to using up lettuce! I'm going to make chicken tacos, and I'm going to make a chopped salad. I've had two wedge salads already, and a BLT. I'm ready to use this baby up! It was only .59, so it was a great deal.

My professional association just scheduled a Happy Hour and a lunch in February, so I put them on my calendar. Both at downtown locations. I do enjoy the socializing at these events, and even though I am quite busy with the museum, it never hurts to keep in touch with people who can alert me to other opportunities.

My trip to Aldi's yesterday cost $32. It was mostly stocking up on items that were running low. I must be well-stocked because my pantry is packed solid! It is a small pantry, though.

Property Tax

January 31st, 2017 at 09:50 am

Not much to report, but I did get my property tax bill and already sent in the check. It was $970. It's a good feeling to just be able to do that. The second payment -- in the summer -- should be lower; my total bill should be somewhere around $1750.

My variables so far are at about 26%. I do plan to make a stop at Aldi today after work/gym.

Planning to meet friend K for lunch at a Greek restaurant on Friday, and then I'll go down to Indiana to spend the weekend with BFF. So there will be some spending ahead, but nothing extravagant.

Sunday Afternoon (in the Home of CB)

January 30th, 2017 at 04:26 am

It was a nice, quiet Sunday. In the afternoon, I went to the library and checked out a book and an audiobook; also bought two books at the book sale ($2). Then I stopped on the way home to get my hair cut ($16).

My grandson came over briefly in the evening because they had a "ketchup emergency" so I filled a small container and sent it back with him. Would have just given him the bottle, but it's HUGE. Since I always go for the cheapest unit price.

I finished my challenging puzzle. It was a copy of the Seurat painting "Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte." Even though it was only 500 pieces, the pointillistic style made the pieces very hard to distinguish from one another. Still, I enjoyed the process, and it's satisfying to have it done. I'll look at it a few days and then start another.

The weather has turned colder and snowier. I may have a longer commute this morning. I'm glad I filled up so I won't be worrying about stretching my gas.

My Florida son's birthday is coming up. I think I will just send him a check, since they are always struggling. For Christmas, I got him some bulbs for their outdoor spotlights, which I didn't think was very exciting, but it's what he had on his list. With cash, he can get anything he wants, or put it in the family budget, if it needs a boost.

My Miscellaneous Income statement came from the museum, so I can start on my taxes. I didn't dive in this weekend. I may work on it this week, if I'm not too tired after work. Today I'm going to babysit for a few hours after school, so that's all I'll get done today!

Girlfriend Lunch

January 29th, 2017 at 05:00 am

My girlfriend lunch was pretty much the whole day -- I left at 9 in the morning to drive to K's house, and we drove together to the restaurant, where we met B at 1:30 (she was late -- whizzed past the exit.) I got home at 5. And I was so tired I didn't do much before bed.

Lunch was $33, and mostly delicious, though my entree -- meatloaf -- was a disappointment. Meatloaf can be very good or very bad. It wasn't very bad, just eh. Nevetheless, I brought some home to pack in a lunch, and I also brought home my veggies and some cornbread. I'll use the veggies in soup today.

Obviously, we had a great time, because we talked so long. We had a table right next to the fireplace -- with a real fire -- it was very cozy.

We made plans for a trip together -- very much scaled down from the original idea, which is fine with me. We will go to Madison, Indiana, which is on the Ohio border, and stay in the state park lodge. Madison is a charming old town with good restaurants and antique shops; lots of beautiful nineteenth-century architecture. If we get a hankering for city pleasures, Louisville and Cincinnati are not far away. Now we just need to firm up the dates. K and B are much busier than I am, so they will decide.

Before I set off in the morning, I did laundry and went to the grocery, where I spent $38. I'll probably do more shopping today at a different store when I go to the gym. I'll get gas, too.

Car Repair

January 27th, 2017 at 04:58 pm

Well, I feel like I'm working just to pay for car repairs. This time it cost $975. The master switch assembly had to be replaced; they also cleaned two drains and did an evaporator flush. I declined a tune-up; that can wait.

I also paid $8 to replenish the gas I used today.

The loaner was a beauty! A 2017 RAV4 -- they certainly know how to entice someone who is struggling with an old car. But I'm not buying a new car. Actually, even after I switched back to my own car, I felt like it still ran pretty good.

I woke up VERY early this morning, and now I'm coming to the end of a long day. I think I'll sleep well tonight.

Tomorrow I'm meeting my girlfriends in Indiana for lunch. This get-together has been rescheduled twice; it was supposed to happen before Christmas! I'm looking forward to seeing them and exchanging gifts. I'm also really looking forward to the lunch -- it's supposed to be a good restaurant!

Low-Spend Day, and Delay on Car Repair

January 26th, 2017 at 04:32 pm

Spent just .71 today on coffee.

After work I went to the service center and actually talked to the very same person who handled my car repair last time. He convinced me to come back tomorrow morning so that I can have a loaner. That way I can still go to work while the car is getting worked on. Nice to know I have that option. I hope they won't be upset about the length of my commute; I probably should have told them. Oh well, I will certainly fill the tank before I return the car.

Just hope the car will be repaired without too much $$ and time. I am committed to going to Indiana on Saturday to meet my girlfriends for lunch. It's been canceled and rescheduled twice already; can't do it again.

It will be fun to drive a newer car tomorrow! I hope it doesn't make me long for one of my own.

Doctor Visit

January 26th, 2017 at 04:42 am

My visit at the doctor was great! Not just because it only cost $5, either! He verified that my kidneys are doing well; the creatine number is actually a little better, which is unusual; it's usually a steady downgrade. We talked about diet, and he verified that I don't have to worry about "kidney recipes" at this point -- they are for people on dialysis -- and I should just eat a wide variety of healthy foods. He did warn me not to go on an all-protein diet, which I wouldn't do anyway.

I do have to go back and get more blood drawn, as my cholesterol level wasn't checked, and that needs to be done because it hasn't been checked since I switched statins. That was just a miscommunication with the doctor who was covering for him.

I've decided to go in to work today and take my car to the shop tomorrow, if I can get an appointment. It's operable, just annoying, and needs to be fixed before it gets worse.

Spending yesterday: Aside from the $5 doctor visit, I spent $2 on parking, $20 at the grocery store, $5 for after-school snacks with my grandson, and $1 for a toy from Goodwill.

The dark cloud is that C met with her oncologist yesterday. DIL did not offer a lot of details, but said that she is turning down chemo that would make her sick, because it would only extend her life by two months. (She is going to get other chemo.) This sounds so dire; I can't bear to think about it.

DIL said she had a wonderful day with her mother yesterday, opening up and talking about many things they had never discussed before, and it was a very loving and sharing time.

I am still hoping for a miracle. Sometimes I can't be a realist.

Did It!

January 25th, 2017 at 05:46 am

I had a no-spend day yesterday, and I ended my January pay cycle with only 96% of my variables budget spent. I'm proud of this, because my variables included $461 for vacation expenses.

It was a short month, since I didn't start counting until Jan. 1 (instead of my payday, which fell in December.) So it did not include my mortgage or assessment fees, or even utilities -- all of that was paid in December. Plus, since I was away from home until the 10th or so, my regular expenses were low.

Here is how it fell out:

Vacation/Travel: 461
Insurance: 335
Phone: 52
Gas: 49
Groceries: 46
Gifts/Charity: 43
Medical/Health: 38
Eating Out: 32
Furnishings/Equipment/Decor: 31
Vet/Pet Supplies: 18
Clothing: 12
Laundry: 11
Household Supplies: 2
Fares/Parking: 2
Grand Total: 1132

Doubt that I'll be able to match this again!

This morning I paid my mortgage, my credit cards, and an outstanding medical bill.

I'm going to the doctor later on, but that will only cost $5. (I will be billed, however, for the labs I had done last week.)

After school, I will pick up my grandsons, and we'll probably go somewhere for a treat.

I'm probably going to take tomorrow off as well as today, so I can take the car to the shop. I can't do it today, as I have to have it available.

This morning I made myself silver dollar blueberry pancakes, which I served with Kerrygold butter and pure maple syrup. Yum. These little treats get me through.

Checking In

January 24th, 2017 at 05:33 am

It's time to go to work, but I wanted to check in.

I spent $7 yesterday, on a valentine card and food at the museum. My variables budget is 96% spent (if I've estimated correctly). Just have to get through today, and if I don't spend, I've come in under.

My car is acting up with an old problem. The power locks aren't working. That itself wouldn't be such a problem, but it's an electrical problem and might affect other things. The problem comes from water coming in somewhere and pooling on the floor. It's been fixed before -- two times, the last time about a year ago. Sigh.

My computer is a little wonky lately, too. Yesterday I was putting in an entry and the internet just disappeared. I didn't get it back until this morning.

So I'm a little worried that big expenses are coming up. I don't want to clean out my savings before my gap year.

Well, that's it! I'm on the road again!

Have to Make This Quick

January 22nd, 2017 at 04:05 pm

Mercy Street is restarting tonight! I want to watch the last episode of season one so I will be up to speed.

I bought gas today for $23. My variables spending is at 95%. I have to buy a valentine tomorrow for my granddaughter, because I promised I would send one for her school valentine box. So there will be a little more spending.

I got one of my December checks from the museum today. They still owe me another one.

I'm still waiting for my tax form from the museum -- it's not a W-2, can't remember what it's called. Also waiting for the statement from TIAA. So I'm not going to be one of the early filers.

I finished hemming my pants today. I started a jigsaw puzzle. I went to the gym. I made migas for breakfast. It's been a good day.

People Before Money

January 21st, 2017 at 04:20 pm

That's what Suze Orman says, and that's what I was operating on today. Despite my plan to spend as close to nothing as possible, I went out to breakfast with C and DIL and my grandson. It just felt right. We need to treasure these good times.

Also spent about $1.50 on parking. I'm not sure, because my grandson kept shoving in coins from my coin purse before I could count them, but we ended up with about an hour and a half in time, so I assume we spent $1.50.

I planned to go to the gym this evening, but it's not going to happen. I WILL do it in the morning.

I was very domestic today. I baked molasses cookies, which I froze in individual baggies for my lunches, and I worked on shortening a pair of pants I bought at Goodwill some time ago. I'm going to double hem them, and I'm about halfway done. I'll finish them tomorrow. So, baking and sewing, very home ec, right? I also really scrubbed my stovetop, which never looks very clean, but at least it looks better.

Grandson's basketball game was very exciting. A win for us! That's why we had the celebration breakfast.

Unfortunately, my son couldn't come because he has strep throat. I am so hoping I don't come down with it. I've finally conqurered the cough from my last cold -- I don't want more illness. But I do think I kissed him the other day....

It's Friday

January 20th, 2017 at 02:30 pm

I haven't even had a long week -- only three days of work -- but I'm glad it's Friday.

My boss treated me to coffee and a scone this morning, so it would be a no-spend day today, except that I just put in a load of laundry.

I got my test results. Most of it means nothing to me. There was only one comment from the doctor -- CR improved. I think that means creatine level is improved, which is good; that would mean improved kidney function. I can see offhand that potassium and sodium are high, but still within normal ranges. Same with glucose. I guess I'll learn more when I actually see the doctor on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, the plan for this weekend is to keep my spending down to a bare minimum. I haven't got the gas yet -- I can do that on Sunday, before I go back to work. The only household thing that is in danger of running out is toilet paper! I have two rolls. Hmmmm. At least they're BIG rolls. Smile

Enjoy your weekend, everyone!

Waiting for Pay Day

January 19th, 2017 at 03:14 pm

My day at home yesterday was pretty quiet. And, other than a $1.50 load of laundry, it was a no-spend day.

I didn't even use any gas. When I went to get my blood work done, I took the train. I didn't want to deal with parking. Of course, there is a cost in using the train, also, but it is not out of pocket, since I prepay by making deposits on my Venta card. And as a senior, I only pay half of what others pay.

Today I spent .71 on coffee at work. I had an assignment that went fairly smoothly, and I was able to leave early. I went to the gym afterwards and it was still light when I came home. I love that!

I have enough gas to get to work and back tomorrow. A fill-up this weekend will insure that I will get there and back next Monday and Tuesday. Then on Wednesday I will get paid. If I can hold off on spending till then, my variables will be 88%, which is great, considering that I spent $461 on vacation expenses.


January 17th, 2017 at 04:03 pm

That's what I spent today - $2 for a prescription and .71 for coffee.

Even though I slept well last night, I felt kind of unfocused at work today. I struggled to finish my assignment -- actually, it wasn't an easy one. But I completely forgot how to run a certain report, and it was embarrassing to admit that to my boss. It's been a while since I've done that, and when you get older, that kind of stuff doesn't stick any more. Annoying!

I asked for tomorrow off last week, because I thought I would be needed to pick the boys up from school. That is no longer the case, but I'm taking the day off anyway. I'm going to get my labs done in the morning, and next week I will see my doctor to follow up on the kidney disease. This will be the first time we can judge how quickly it is progressing.

Yesterday I got a lot of ordinary house work done, including getting all the Christmas stuff stored in my basement storage room. It felt good to finally get that cleared out.

I've been diligent about going to the gym since I got back from the cruise; not so diligent about my diet. I'm not pigging out, just not cutting back as much as I should. So that is something to work on.

I'm looking forward to reading in bed tonight, and waking up whenever I want to in the morning!

Free Lunch and More

January 16th, 2017 at 08:20 am

Yesterday 12 members of my family got together at a local pizza restaurant for lunch. My ex paid for the whole thing! He has these spots of generosity. He certainly has his faults, too, but I do appreciate his good points, now that I don't have to live with him any more.

Anyway, I not only got a free lunch, but took home a box of sauteed vegetables and three slices of pizza. The pizza slices I froze individually for lunches. The vegetables I divided into broccoli, for broccoli cheese soup, and peppers/onions/mushrooms for omelets or migas. I froze those little packets, too, because I have a lot of food on hand to use up now. I have not yet used the tortellini -- I must do it today -- and I have a cooked chicken breast to use up. The reason I didn't make the tortellini last night was that I was too full from my big lunch.

I did a load of laundry yesterday, but it cost me $2.25 rather than $1.50. The washer I was using quit in the middle of the cycle, so I had to transfer my wet clothes to a new washer and start over. I see today that said washer is still full of water. I didn't report it, because I was too hurried yesterday, but I hope someone else has.

I need to do another load today, but now there is one dysfunctional washer and two filled with wet laundry. It's so annoying to share laundry facilities with others, especially when they are not very considerate of others. That wet laundry has been sitting there for hours.

No big plans today except to catch up on housework.


January 15th, 2017 at 05:12 am

Yesterday I caved and bought some things for myself. I had a 30% Kohl's coupon and the usual 20% BB&B coupon, so I went shopping with the thought that I could do some gift-shopping, which I would like to spread out more this year prior to December.

At Kohl's I looked only at the clearance areas -- where the markdowns were 70-80%. I ended up buying two bras for myself ($12 for both) some kitchen towels for myself ($6) and baby clothes for my soon-to-be-born grandniece ($16). So yes, I did get a gift!

At BB&B I bought a kitchen waste bin, the kind with the flip top and and the pedal. With my coupon, it was $25. I've been wanting to replace my bin for quite a while; it is highly visible in my kitchen and my old one was a disgrace.

I also picked up $13 worth of groceries (getting two free items) and did a $1.50 load of laundry.

My variables spending went up to 86%. I have ten more days in this pay period. I'll probably have to get more gas, but I think I'm pretty good on groceries.

I got an $80 bill for the tail end of my physical therapy. I'll pay that when I get paid so that it will go on the next cycle.

I was planning to make chicken with cranberry sauce last night for dinner, but when I opened the bag of cranberries, they were spoiled. Stupid me! I guess I was thinking they were like dried cranberries, and would last forever. Should have frozen them. So instead I had plain chicken with peas on the side.

I've been writing down my menus in the morning along with my to-do list. Today I'm having blueberry pancakes for breakfast, lunch out (free), and dinner will be chicken tortellini soup.

Guess that's it!

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