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Taking candy from a baby

December 31st, 2013 at 02:50 am

I was looking for the number to my lean holder on my car the other day and I came across the banking website for the company. I was on the site for about five minutes before I realized I was at the wrong place and before I went to hunt for the right site, I came across a promotion that the bank is running for the year. If I have at least $1500 directly deposited in an account and pay at least 2 bills from bill pay, I will have $20 deposited into a savings account each month! Yes! I said each month, not a one time deal. That's $240 per year doing two things I do anyway. I plan on taking advantage of that!

I currently have an account with another bank that I love and I have no plans of closing it. I am going have my monthly bills transferred to that account and use my new account for the extra payments that I am making to my debt, snowball by snowball and my car loan.

Is it normal for me to be THIS excited to open a bank account?!?! I can't get over how easy it is going to be for me to earn $240! I am still trying to decide what I want to do with the money; use it for Christmas or apply it to debt at the end of the year. I have 12 months to think about it though. I am going to open my account tomorrow and get the ball rolling on my direct deposit. $240 here I come!

Easy money

December 29th, 2013 at 06:17 pm

I love it when I can make money with no effort! Yesterday I packed up some of my son's old clothes and mine as well at took them off to resell shops to earn some money. This is something that I do twice a year to buy my son new clothes. He wears uniforms to school, so his "street" clothes don't get much wear so I have many times resold the clothes back to the resell shop I got them from...score!

Yesterday I made $55 bucks and spent $40 on three pair of jeans, a pair of school pants and three shirts. He was in a real need for some new clothes and shoes, but I covered the shoes for Christmas. What I got him is going to last him until the summer.

The $15 I have left over will be going in the bank.

I'm back!

December 28th, 2013 at 10:39 pm

I started last year blogging about my debt and then stopped. Maybe I was not ready to face it all, not ready to really do the work that it was going to take to pay my debt off, but I am ready now! Ready to get out of this hole I dug myself in. So re-join my journey to say to my debt "See ya later!" Here are the numbers.....

Card #2 1,018.65 16.00% 20.00
SL #1 1,785.24 4.80% 25.00
SL #2 11,171.13 4.80% 104.27
SL #3 20,824.43 4.80% 121.95
SL #4 22,031.32 4.80% 128.36

Total: 56,830.77 YIKES!!!

I have another cc has a balance of 262, but it's not listed because I am going to pay it off at the end of January with an extra paycheck I am going to receive. Also not listed is my car loan. I use my income tax return to pay my car loan up for the year, so it's something I never budget for.

Tomorrow I will post my monthly budget. Glad to be back!

A weight lifted!

November 28th, 2012 at 01:36 pm

After getting my son started on his morning routine, I called my car loan company to make sure my payment posted and to see if the deferment had been approved and guess what.....IT HAS!!! I feel a since of relief that I havenít felt for a few weeks now. I added up what is going to cost me to pay December and January's note and it will be around $300, so I will be applying my entire state tax return to it. The $120 I have that I was going to put toward my note will be going to my lowest cc bill and the goal is to have that paid off by April of 2013!

I have to resist the temptation to go out and buy myself something with this money! Once I found out the deferment had been approved, I have to admit, shoes and clothes flashed before my eyes! I keep telling myself that one day all of this debt will be paid off and I will be able to buy what I want with no worries, but it sure is hard! I have a $10 gc from DSW...(you will learn in reading this blog that shoes are my crack!!)....and I am thinking that I may take $20 from my first pt job check and buy a pair of shoes that will cost me $20 after the coupon, but I will think really hard on that.

Non the less, I am a happy camper this morning! Today is my first pt job assigment and I am nervous and excited! I'm going to have to do an entry about my pt job and excatly what I do sometime this week.

Happy Hump Day and GOOD LUCK to anyone who is going to take their chances at tonight's powerball! I know I'm going to buy a ticket or two!

Is it just me???

November 28th, 2012 at 03:57 am

Today while I was at work, I downloaded a personal finance book to my Kindle called "How to live Big on Small budget". As soon as I started reading it, I had to put it up! Is it just me or are most of the personal finance books out there made for people who have money, but just don't know how to manage it??? I mean really, if I read one more book that tells me "Sell that second home", "Drive just one car", "Sell some stock", I'm going to scream! Hey guy who wrote this book clearly made for someone who makes 100k and not 29k, "I don't have that second home, hell I don't have a first home!" ,"I don't have a second car and had I not got current I would be out of my first car", "What are these stocks you speak of???"

I would just love a book that is made for people in my money situation. For the lower middle class personÖ..because according to an article on Yahoo, that's what I am. I want a book that is written by a person, who was actually in debt and go out, not by some person who never was and just studied numbers in school, read other books, tweaked here and there and then put out a book.

Now I'm not saying these books aren't helpful. For some people, these books are made just for you and for me personally I do find tips and tricks that I can use in my situation, but it would be nice to have a book that I can completely relate to. I just have yet to find that book.

Iím not going to count this book out, I just started it and maybe I will be surprised. I will be sure to report back and let you know how I liked or didnít like the book!

Fingers crossed and my dad's advice

November 26th, 2012 at 11:43 pm

After making a payment today to my car loan company and in the process of updating my blog, I got a phone call from them. I have to admit, I have not been picking up when they call, just listen to the message and look out my window every five seconds to make sure the repo man was not taking my car away. It has been a source of stress for the past few weeks and I finally picked up and had the oh so uncomfortable conversation with the collection agent on the other end. She was really nice, to my surprise and really helpful. I let her know that I made a payment today and I will be making a second tomorrow. She also let me know that I qualified for the deferment program. She explained that if approved, two months would be put on the end of my loan, bringing me current and my next payment wouldn't be due until December. She said given my current account status I should not have any issues being approved for it, so fingers crossed! I will know on Wednesday if I have gotten approved or not. And don't worry, I am still making my payments as scheduled so if it doesn't get approved, I'm still catching up. Fingers crossed that I get this approved, it would be a weight of my shoulders!

One another note, I went to a training today for my part time job and I am really excited! Before taxes I should clear $475, but I am going to double check the numbers with my boss as my very first training had to be moved due to Super Storm Sandy and was done in bits over a few days. No matter the amount my plans for the money is this... a portion to pay my car note up until January, a portion in my savings and the rest to my student loan back pay.

I can't wait until I'm in a place where I have both caught up, so I can start working on getting them both one month ahead. When I had my second car (this is my third, my driving sucks ass and could be a blog all its own!), my dad would tell me "Shanna, you always pay your bills one month ahead just incase you hit hard times!" It's advice now in my current situation I had paid closer attention to. He told me all my teenage years he's always right, I'll be damn the old man is....lol!


Tomorrow is bill paying day and I hope to have a numbers update by the end of the month and a meeting with my rental office. Don't worry, I'm not late or behind at all, they have charged me a late fee in error and I have to go get that straight. It has been a nightmare dealing with them as this is the second time this has happend to me! I'm hoping to get all of this mess straigt and not have this issue ever to happen again. I know people make mistakes, but really?!?!

Happy Monday to all!

It has to be done.....

November 25th, 2012 at 11:54 pm

So yesterday I told you guys about all the extra money I made with very little effort to add to my savings account. I was excited to see my account jump from $10 to a little over $120, but as you know, things don't always go as planned.

I am a few months behind on my car payments and after a call from my car loan company and much thought, I have made the step to take the extra money and get current. Would I have liked to add extra money to my savings, yes....do I need my car to get around, double yes. I will be making the payment tomorrow morning because it has to be done.

And my day got even better!

November 24th, 2012 at 11:57 pm

As if putting some free money in the bank wasn't good enough, more good things happend to me today! I had a ton of errands I had been putting off that I need to get done today. So off my son and I went to get his hair cut and after that I went to drop off some of his clothes to a second hand store to see how much money I could make.

My next stop was to another second hand store I sold some of my clothes to a while ago. They called and told me that I had a $10.85 store credit and if I came to use it by December 10th I would score a $5 credit to use at a later date. Since the stores are next to each other I went in to see what I could find and I had a HUGE score. I had been saying I was in need of sweaters, and I found not just one, but two marked 50% off costing me just $1.22 out of pocket and gaining $5 gc!!! I plan on going back to pick up one more before the 1/2 off sale is over.

Then off to the Sprint store to get my phone looked at. I have been going back and forth with them about sending me a new one, its in bad shape; can't get it to stay on unless its charged and a ton of other things, but after a fight I got it! It will be here on Tuesday! And will cost me ZERO!!!

Back to the second hand kids store I went to see how much money I made...I was guessing not much and to pick out two pair of uniform pants for my son on the cheap. He has been wearing the only pair he has for the past month, I wash them every two days but he really needed at least two more. I found two pairs for $4.50 each and 25% and I was going to use the money I made from the clothes to pay for them. I get to the register and I made...sit down.....$92!!!! I wanted to pass out! It was such a large amount they had to write me a check! After the pants, I have $87!!!

This has been a GREAT money day for me! I am now going to put my new sweaters in my closet, my son's pants in his closet and sign the back of this check, it will be another jig to the mailbok for me on Monday!!!

Enjoy the rest of you Saturday, I know I will!

Survey sites, rebates and a settlement check??

November 24th, 2012 at 02:12 pm

Today I am going to mail in $39.60 to my savings account and mail off $20 in rebates! This is money I didn't do much of anthing for, $30 of it being from money I earned from one of the many survey sites I belong to and $9.60 of it from a settelment for BOA that I didn't even know I was a part of, but happy somehow I was! It was for a lawsuit againist them for charging super high overdraft fees. I had that account for about two years and the bank closed it when my boyfirend at the time and son's father overdrafted it to the tune of $600! Besides my son, its the best thing he did as I get back $9.60 of the $600 I paid back!

As I was getting the checks together to mail off, I started to think about all the money I have made from these sites and its real money!

PineCone Research- $30
MyPoints- 8100 points($50 Old Navy GC, with leftovers)
I-PsosISay- $20
Swagbucks- 3396 points ($35 Amazon GC here I come!)
My Coke Rewards- 2 $5 pizza GC
Rebate- $20

So all total I have earned $165 in either cash in hand or gift cards for very little effort and a bonous $9.60 that I didn't even know about! That's real money, to bank to pay off debt, to buy me something nice! And I didn't leave my son out of the fun, he had his own survey site as well; KidsEyes and he currently has $20! On top of that I am going to get him a savings account with ING and earn him $10 more!!

I normally do a slow creap to the mail box, but not today, more like a jig!

Have a Happy Saturday!

The budget

November 23rd, 2012 at 03:29 pm

As promised below is my household budget.

Take Home Pay- 1790.00
Fixed Expenses......
Savings- $15.00
Rent- $634.00
Student Loan #1- $533.00
Student Loan #2- no payment due
Car Insurance- $199
Renters Insurance- $13.50
CC #1- $33.00
CC #2- $20.00
Variable Expenses......
Gas- $120.00
Groceries- $50.00
Dominion Power- $60.00
Cable- $50.00
Cell phone- $78.00
As is stands I am over budget by 6.50 per month

This is my budget for December as I will be paying all my bills for November tomorrow. Now I know what you don't see is my car loan listed in my budget. What I have done is year's past is pay my loan up for the year with my income tax returns, but that didn't happen like I wanted this year, the reason why I am past due. I have about $200 that I am going to put toward it and $300 in my state taxes that I have not filed yet, so this will get my account current.

Now looking at my budget, you are like me....where am I going to get the money from to pay down my debt, well I have a a part time job! This money is not ever going to be added into my monthly budget and applied directly toward my debt. Its not income that is steady so I don't want to make it seem I have more money per month that I do. I go on Monday to sign my paperwork and I hope to have my first check by December!

A few things about the numbers, my power bill is never $60 per month. For November it was $44.10, but just incase it is ever that high, I set that amount aside. Any money that is not spent goes to debt. And I know you are looking at my grocery budget, $50 per month WHAT!?!?! I use coupons and have a really good stock pile, so I am able to manage with that!

Well there you have it. Fell free to ask questions, pick my budget apart, offer suggestions!

Hope everyone had a wonderful Turkey Day! I'm paying bills tomorrow, so I will let you all know how that goes!!

Hip Horray its Turkey Day!!!

November 22nd, 2012 at 02:31 pm

Hello All,

I woke up this morning to a wonderful welcome from members of this community and it made me smile! I just wanted to drop by and wish everyone a Happy Turkey Day!!! I have agreed to cook (I know right...lol), so I am off to my parent's house with my son and nephew in tow!

I hope everyone enjoy's good food, family and friends!

Happy Turkey DAY!!!!


P.S I will post my budget tomorrow!

And the journey begins.......

November 22nd, 2012 at 04:51 am

First things first.....

HI!! I am Shanna and I am a single mother of one hyper seven year old boy! I am the typical mom trying my best raise my son the best I can. Well like a lot of you, I have debt and a lot of it and I am doing all I can to get rid of it! Everyone has their story and this is mine....the good, the bad, the ugly and the really ugly! I'm not going to do everything right. I know that I will make some mistakes, I know that I will have some slip ups, I know that this journey will not be an easy one, but it is one I am ready for.

So here it goes......the numbers, oh boy yall, I'm scared *bitting nails*

Student Loan #1 (Yep that means there is a #2!)
$59,496.55 (past due amount $418.14)
Student Loan #2
$8,739.30 (no payment due)
Credit Card #1 (Yep, yet again this means a #2!)
$347.76 (current)
Credit Card #2
$1,009.37 (current, but over limit by $9.37)
Car Loan
$7,060.79 (past due by 529.74)
Medical Debt
Bull Shit Debt (old bills from God knows when)
So as of now my bottom line is 76,653.77 (YIKES!!!)
and.....
Savings Account: $10 (well its a start)


Now this number does not yet include my medical or bs debt, give me a few days to get you all an accurate number and I will update the bottom line. My goal for the rest of 2012 and 2013 is the following......

Student Loan #1-$56,496.55
Student Loan #2-nothing will be due
Credit Card #1-$0
Credit Card #2-$500
Car Loan-$6,000
Medical Debt-1/2 of what that number is
Bull Shit Debt-1/2 of what that number is
Savings Accont-$500

So there are the numbers and there are my goals! Simple and plain and there is not hiding from that. That's it for now people. I will post my budget tomorrow so you can see the ins and outs of my cash flow, well Friday....tomorrow is Turkey Day!

I hope you have fun on this journey with me as I work to meet my debt reduction and savings goals for the year!