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Lots of Bills

October 30th, 2017 at 06:39 am

Ugh. This is the first month where I've really had to be on top of bill dates and what order I am going to pay. Usually I just pay as they come in. But stupid me put $800 (home remodel stuff) on a credit card thinking I'd be able to pay if off before the due date no problem. Well I forgot we don't have as much wiggle room anymore to just cash flow such large expenses.

Money is coming in. I just never know which day I will get my design check. So in case it is late I need to pay bills carefully.

It's a pain, but I'm not too worried. I do have an EF I can pull from, but it's in a savings account so I would have to transfer and I just don't want to if I can help it.

In the future I need to be much more careful. I also realize I need to keep a bigger buffer in my checking account. I don't want to have to juggle things again.

In better news. I set a goal for working on design this month, and not only did I do all those hours, I set a bigger goal and did those too! Hurray! If I can keep that up our finances will be in much better shape.

Lots of Trips

August 11th, 2017 at 12:53 pm

Husband did not get the high paying job he applied for, which was expected.

No word yet on the job with good hours. It has been a couple months now and they still haven't hired anyone, so I am doubting they will.

Oh well. We are okay for now.

I have about a million trips planned the next couple months. Ugh! This month I will be gone for a weekend for a show. Then another 14 hour trip to deliver goats and visit a friend. Then next month we are going on a weekend road trip with some friends as a last hurrah before husband's friend leaves for the military. One of my friends is getting married a couple states over and I am in the wedding so I will be gone for a weekend for that. Then most likely we will go camping or something for our anniversary. Yikes!

Thankfully they are all cheap trips. But still a lot of driving, planning, etc.

Today is payday, and next payday is an "extra" one. We will likely use some of the funds for our weekend trips, and some to pay down our home loans.

Floating along. We haven't wracked up anymore house debt, but we have had several larger household expenses pop up such as doctors visits, vet visits, etc. Just trying to keep everything cash flowed.

Finally Paid

July 31st, 2017 at 06:21 am

Finally got some checks I have been owed since May. Yikes! That allowed me to pay the mortgage, LOC, and the minimums on both home CCs. All caught up for now.

Home addition is still going well. We are started putting up drywall! That makes such a large difference.

Friend is committed to the military and can't back out now. He signed up for 6 years. Frown Oh well. I am just hoping that getting away from his family will help him. He is going to leave most of his stuff here where it will be safe.

Husband has gotten no word back on the two jobs he has applied for. Phewy. He will test for the two other jobs soon.

Sad Situation

July 19th, 2017 at 07:07 am

We got some sad news last week.

My husband's best friend is too nice. His family is lazy, has a lot of kids, and is dirt poor. They have always struggled badly. As the older brother he has always felt the need to help them out, and they take advantage of him. He moved back in with them to help. For some more back story they live in a shed they fixed up in someone's back yard. He shares a very small room with his two younger brothers...

He pays the bills, keeps the heat on, feeds the kids, loans them money, etc. He can not/will not say no. They have opened personal loans in his name and credit cards. He is naive and let them on their word of they will pay him back. They even convinced him to buy a house in his name for them this year. Thankfully it fell through.

He is not good with money, but he isn't bad. He works hard, and pays his bills. But he doesn't really understand interest rates, saving, etc. He is going to school full time, does an unpaid internship full time, and works full time. He is pulling 16 hour days. His mom has never worked, and his dad is a part time "handy man." (eye roll)

Well last week out of the blue he told us that his parents have so much debt in his name that he is drowning and can no longer keep up with the bills. His only option would be to drop out of school and the internship so he could pick up a second job which he doesn't want to do. I think he wants a quick fix. So he came up with his great idea that he would join the military and use the sign on bonus to pay off his debt, and they would pay for his school.

This guy is not cut out for the military. He is sensitive, quiet, and way too meek and kind. I think it would ruin him. He isn't excited about it or wants to do it but in his head it is the only way to get out of the mess.

He only has $20-$30k debt. We told him we would help him budget and if he got a better job he could pay it off. He says he will never get anywhere unless he gets away from his parents. Which I agree, but he has been unsuccessful finding a roommate and can't afford to live on his own. Husband's parents offered to let him live with them. (He is like family and has lived with them when he was younger.) But he refuses to pause school to pay down the debt.

He sprung this on us last week and said he was going to meet with a recruiter. Husband advised him to not sign up for anything and think about it for a while. We invited him over for the weekend so we could sit down and work out a solution for him. Well the next day he called back and said he signed up. Husband is ticked and says he has made up his mind and refuses to try and reason with him anymore. But I think he is making a horrible split second decision and is going to regret it.

I am so mad and sick about this. How DARE his parents use him, and take advantage, and feel no remorse about him having to join the military to pay for them. Oh BTW his mom is on vacation in Florida right now...

It is sad that he is making a life changing decision over $20k in debt. His parents are toxic, and once he gets out he is just going to get into the same mess again if he can't learn to tell them no and budget better.

Ugh. Just needed to rant. He has signed up but not sworn in yet. So I'm not sure if it is too late now. But I am still hoping he comes to his senses. Husband is being mad about it right now and doesn't want to talk about it, but I know he is upset and hurt. His friend stays at our house several times a month and even has a toothbrush here. Friend lived at his parents house during their teenage years (family couldn't afford their kids), so they are like brothers. I think he feels betrayed that his friend signed up without even talking to him about it first.

Pray that he makes the right decision. Frown

Update on Jobs

July 7th, 2017 at 12:02 pm

To update on my husband's job situation:

He had finally decided to apply for a job with good pay / benefits but crappy work and hours. Before he could do that someone told him about a much better job that was hiring. He applied for that but they are saying they aren't going to start the hiring process until after July 15th. So we are still waiting.

Then another job came open which has GREAT pay and benefits but just okay hours. He applied for that (along with probably 100 other people, ugh). Well they called today to let him know he has made it to the final hiring process and he is scheduled for an interview on the 17th. Yay!

The original planned job is also now hiring. So husband will probably go ahead and apply for that as well. All this to say there are 3 good jobs in the running and we are hoping and praying that husband can manage to snag one of them. He is a great worker and has never called in sick or been late. Just wish someone would give him a chance to shine.

In recap 3 possible jobs.

#1 decent pay, awesome hours (days, no weekends or holidays)
#2 great pay, boring work
#3 good pay, swing shifts and evenings, boring work

Husband is still wishing for #1, although #2 would be great for us financially. He would be getting about a 50% raise. Which is equally to what I am currently making. All of them offer good benefits and retirement which is a major improvement over what we currently have.

Please keep us in your thoughts and pray that interviews go well. This could be a real life changer for us.

Gutters & Ovens

July 3rd, 2017 at 10:17 am

I got my estimate back for my new gutters. They came in about $500 less than budgeted. Score!

Then my oven stopped working... It is at least 30 years old and came with the house when we bought it. It has been going out/not working off and on for a couple years now. But if you wiggle/bang on it enough it will come on.

Everyday it gets a little harder to get it working. Finally a couple days ago I thought it finally gave up the ghost, then yesterday it magically started again. Today it is broke again. lol. It makes me crazy wondering when it is really going to be its last day.

Several stores are offering up to 40% off on ovens right now because of the holiday so it might be time to bite the bullet and buy a new one. We are going to go window shopping next week and see how good of a deal we can find. I worry if I don't get it now, it will die in a couple weeks and then we will have to wait months until the next sale. If we do purchase something we will use the $500 we saved on the gutters.

I did look on the local craigslist and sellers clubs but the used ones are only $50 - $100 cheaper than a brand new one on sale!

Last year we replaced our failing washer during a holiday sale and I am still super happy with my purchase. I consider myself a frugal person. But a purchase is definitely worth it if it improves your quality of life. And let me tell you I am so over having to fidget with my oven for 10 minutes every time I need to cook something. What a frustration and waste of time.

Another Trip

June 19th, 2017 at 07:10 am

Just got back from a short weekend trip to the windy city. One of my friends travels for work and is currently living there, so a few of us got together for a girls weekend at her place.

I had a great time and only spent $40. (which I had saved over the last couple weeks) We of course wanted to experience Chicago living so we saw the giant bean, ate classic style pizza and hotdogs, had a picnic on lake Michigan, and toured the field museum. We would have liked to see the aquarium but it was closed for the day.

I am SO not a fan of crowds or traffic, but I kept my anxiety in check and we got there and back safely. It was nice to have a weekend away from the remodel and work.

I am all caught up on bills and credit cards besides the giant LOC and 0% cards for the house. It is nice to be able to have money in the check left over to pay more than the minimums. I am determined to pay down debt ASAP.

Prayers for Job & Vacation

May 19th, 2017 at 06:55 am

Well my husband did end up getting a raise this year. $.08... Yes you read that right. That is pretty much an insult. Not even enough for inflation.

Anyway, despite my husband not telling anyone he is starting to look for a different career, a neighbor contacted my father in law randomly about a job opening that he thinks would be a good fit for my husband. This job would be the same pay or more than he is currently working, only 4 days a week, no weekend/holidays, daytime, large yearly raises, and room for growth. And best of all it has awesome benefits, which is what we really need because of all my health issues. This job would be a God send for my husband. We are leaving for vacation TONIGHT! So I picked up an application on my way to work, we are going to fill it out and drop it off in the neighbors mailbox on our way to the airport. He said he will take it in for us!

Could really use some prayers that it works out. It sounds too good to be true. Husband has always wanted to work there but they rarely hire, and don't advertise so you have to know someone. It has been years since they have hired anyone, but one of their employees just retired.

Preparing for vacation is super stressful when I have to have all the animals ready, all my invoices for construction work taken care of, all my real work done, clean for the pet sitters to stay here, etc. Ugh. I'm glad it is about over.

See you all in 10 days!

Not Much to Report

April 17th, 2017 at 08:16 am

Home addition is still going fine. It is exciting to see progress. We have a basement now.

Got my new $5 raise this paycheck so that was nice to help me catch up on some credit card bills. Another week or two and I will be caught up on everything and be able to start funneling to the remodel. In just a couple weeks it will be time to start working on the interior.

Vacation is only about a month away. Plane tickets, rental car, and home are all ordered and paid for. Just need to purchase/pay for whatever attractions we are going to, and food while there.

Purchased a few much needed clothing items such as a swim suit top. Can't go to the beach without a swim suit! I got a $50 top for only $17!

May have to go shopping once more because I couldn't find everything I needed but first I want to go through all my clothes and purge/inventory check.

My house is a major disaster. I think it is time for a spring cleaning / take everything out and organize. It is hard to keep up with when I work every day, milk/bottle feed goats (which takes 2+ hours a day), care for the rest of the animals, work on the home addition, and try to get some rest time in. House cleaning is definitely what gets slacked on. I need to do better.

Not a Happy Ending

January 25th, 2017 at 08:19 am

Sweet little puppy did not make it. :'( She fought hard for 6 days, but in the end I think her injuries got the best of her. Despite her beginning to perk up, she started coughing blood and died within a day. Her punctured lung must have been too severe. Husband and I tearfully buried her last night.

I am horribly sad, but I know I did everything I could, and I am glad she is no longer suffering.

On to financial news:

I have all my W2's back and am ready to submit my taxes after double checking them again. I'm getting back $500.

Also, our loan was APPROVED! Our siding and windows are being ordered today, and there should be some actual construction going on within 2 weeks. I am super nervous about staying in budget. Additional things have already come up that need to be done such as a new front door... No extras unless we can pay cash! So let the scrimping begin.

Construction guys are very nice and are going to let us help with as much as we can to cut down on labor. I'll be shopping around for the best deals asap. We've already picked out our flooring (which is a bit of a splurge, but we are going to install ourselves) Saturday, we are going to go look at some home stores and window shop for tile, fixtures, lighting, etc. Just to start narrowing down prices. We are making a list of everything we need to save for, since we are trying to keep all finishes off the loan.

Sick Puppy

January 23rd, 2017 at 08:37 am

Guys I am so heartbroken. Late Wednesday night my favorite puppy started randomly squealing like someone was hurting it. Odd. But it was still eating and walking around.

First thing Thursday morning it's breathing was changed, and it was crying more often like it was in pain. I rushed it to the vet and he said it appears either the mom accidentally stepped on it, or it got squished under it's big siblings. :'( Broken ribs, possibly punctured lung, internal bleeding. He said it felt "squishy" inside. He gave her some pain meds, and antibiotics and sent me on my way with a good luck, but probably not going to make it.

She has no appetite, and no such reflex at all. So I have to dropper milk in every 3 hours around the clock. Poor thing just lets most of it dribble out though so she is skin and bones.

Every night I was sure she would pass, but I am surprised to see her still alive today. 5 days later! Last night she was so weak that I sat and cried over her for an hour and kissed her goodbye. But this morning she is actually slightly stronger.

She has stopped crying, and her breathing has improved. So I think we are past the danger zone with her injuries. But now I worry about aspiration, and starvation. If she doesn't start eating soon there is no way she can keep going on. I seen her rooting around mom this morning for the first time, of course if you stick a teat in her mouth she just sits there, but at least it's some progress.

I'm waiting on a call back from the vet to see if there is anything else he is willing to do, or if there is anything he can give her to help with appetite. I feel powerless and desperate. But I am doing all I can. I am so exhausted from feeding 24/7 that I actually fell asleep this morning after feeding at 7 and slept until 10. I never sleep that late!

So I would appreciate prayers for her, she is a fighter, but it's an uphill battle.

Bad Weather & Babies

January 10th, 2017 at 06:34 am

Well no more progress has been made on the house. It was 3 degrees last week, and now all this week it's flat line winds and raining. Yay.

We are going to try to clean out some room in the shed tonight so we can continue sanding and painting our bathroom trim. Got to hurry before the appraisal.

I put the last $150 in my animal fund so I can purchase the rest of my winter hay. No more worrying about that fund until I start selling kids again.

Also, we have puppies!! 8 adorable, fat, squeaking puppies.

Something Else in 2017

December 30th, 2016 at 06:16 am

Besides our already crazy remodel in 2017 there is something else happening in 2017 that I haven't shared.

Most likely in the fall I will be undergoing a new and innovative surgery for a possible cure for my very rare lung disease. They only started preforming these in the last year or so, and there is only one hospital and one doctor in the US which performs them. So we will have to travel to the east coast for a week.

Honestly I don't want to get my hopes up that it will even work. But my husband is absolutely ecstatic that I have agreed to go. I've lived with my issues for half my life so I can't even remember what it is like to feel normal anymore. But I know I worry my husband a lot. Poor guy gave himself an ulcer this summer when I had a bad coughing fit and nearly suffocated. He was more scared than I was.

Also, with my condition having children is not a super safe idea since none of my medicines are allowed to be taken while pregnant or nursing. So it's better to get this fixed if I can now, so we can start a family eventually.

My mother has graciously put back a lot of money in her flex spending account, and I won't have any medical bills.

There are still a lot of details to be worked out, but we've been in contact with the doctor. Insurance can take up to 10 weeks to okay the surgery, and then we will have to pick a date, etc.

I really didn't want to be the guinea pig, and I am super anxious about hospitals and needles. So keep me in your thoughts. 2017 is going to be a crazy year, but everything works out it could be life changing!

End of the Year Musings

December 27th, 2016 at 06:39 am

Christmas was great. Spent time with family, and I got practical gifts such as a nail gun and a vacuum I don't think anyone has every been as excited as me to receive a vacuum. I was nearly dancing with glee as I sucked every piece of furniture and every nook and cranny.

Unfortunately I was not able to complete my goals for 2016. But I am confident that I will have the money for the Roth by the April deadline.

I should have my credit cards from Christmas paid in full by next week. And I can't foresee any other expenses popping up. So that's good news!

I am unsure what goals I should set for 2017. Everything is so much up in the air. I am turning the loan application in for our home addition this afternoon, and then there is no going back. Every extra dollar will spent cash flowing remodel expenses in 2017.

We spent our weekend doing some much needed odd jobs on our house to get ready for the upcoming appraisal. This weekend husband will have 3 1/2 days off again, so hopefully we will get everything finished. It's nice seeing our projects come to a close... just in time to start more projects.

Is It Worth It?

December 20th, 2016 at 06:40 am

I have really been trying to lose some weight. The problem is, I love to eat. So I can't just eat salad daily like my husband does. My best friend has moved back to the area, and she goes to the gym daily. So I've been tagging along with her for a couple weeks. I am only able to go 2 - 3 times a week, on my work from home days, and on the weekends. Since I have to go at the same time as her so she can let me in, and she goes during the day when I am working.

I am actually really enjoying it! I feel stronger, and not so lazy. But I am beginning to feel guilty sneaking in the gym without paying, especially since I know the owner. I wanted to try it out for a couple weeks to make sure I would even stick with it though before spending a bunch of money.

Anyway, I feel like I need to purchase a membership or quit going. But a membership is $25 a month. :/ I don't know if I can justify the cost, on what I see as a non essential expense...

My mom is also wanting to work out, so she said she would get a membership too so we could go together. Since I know the owner I am going to see if there is any discount he would give me. Occasionally they run specials.

What do you guys think? Is $25 worth better health? Or would I be better off saving that money?

All At Once

November 28th, 2016 at 06:07 am

Everything is hitting me all at once.

My credit card has a lot of pending charges on it. Ugh. Nearly $1,000 on there once everything posts.

This includes recent vet bills, Christmas shopping, some utility bills, and necessary home/clothing items. Such as a new pair of coveralls since mine's zipper broke, and a new bathroom vent light since ours went out and we are getting too much condensation in there without it.

My Christmas shopping is all complete except for one small item. So I'm glad that it's all done, and now I can just work on paying everything off.

We are signing the remodel contract this week sometime. Scary and exciting.

My goats will start kidding in two weeks! I am so looking forward to that money coming in. Fingers crossed for lots of babies.

Revisiting My Budget

November 15th, 2016 at 07:01 am

I would like to have some input on our budget after considering my raise in January and our new house payment. Just want to make sure we can afford this.

Note: For the first 3 years our house payment will only be $730 and then go up to around $850. (tax exemption) But I would like to figure on the full amount.

2017 Budget

$1,940 His Wage
$740 My Wage
$320 My Wage #2

$3,000 Total Income

Bills & Utilities
$850 Mortgage/Taxes/Insurance
$50 LOC (might be gone)
$75 Internet
$50 Water
$20 Trash
$150 Electric
$50 Propane
$350 Groceries
$150 Car Fuel
$300 Tithes
$40 Date Night
$80 Lunches
$50 Phone
$75 Car Insurance
$75 Pets
$100 Spending

$2,465 Bill Total

Savings & Debt
$120 Car Savings

$415 Remaining
Retirement, Vacation, House


This is our minimum income budget. Usually I work more at job #2, or a get money from other odd jobs. This also doesn't consider Christmas bonuses, tax refunds, etc. All that extra money is used to fund retirement, or vacations.

Bye Bye Medical Bills

November 15th, 2016 at 06:24 am

I paid off my credit card with the medical bill on it today! My checking account is lower than I like, but I have a pending deposit so I went ahead and pulled the trigger.

Got the goat testing results back, all clear. I've paid most of that. Looking at having $150 in vet bills soon, also I need to get my kitten neutered, and I need to go to the doctor for my yearly physical. Yuck! So still lots of little expenses coming up.

Remodel is a go. Just need to sign the contract and hand over the $2,500 deposit. We will be taking the money from the truck fund and the LOC. We will get our new HELOC in a month or two when the work actually starts, at which time we will pay back the truck fund and pay off our current LOC.

So in the next two months we have a mad push to save/pay down debt, and finish some of the remaining home projects before the appraisal. Thankfully it's mostly small stuff and cheap like patching a hole in the drywall, painting the bathroom, finishing the trim, etc.

The remodel is really going to push our financial limits. But we are going to try our best to cash flow as much as we can. No way we cash flow weekly labor. But we are hoping to pay for some of the materials as we go, and pay cash for the finishes such as light fixtures. Any thing we can do to keep the financing only for the big ticket items.

Once the remodel starts we are on a time limit. The bank says we can't refinance into a 30 yr fixed until everything is complete. That includes finishing our upstairs which currently is only insulation and rough in electricity.

So while the crew is working on the addition, we will be working on the upstairs. We are probably also going to do most of the finish work on the addition. But we will just have to wait and see how our budget is going once we get there. Fingers crossed for no major unexpected expenses.

Exciting and scary!

Where Should My Money Go?

November 8th, 2016 at 06:04 am

Okay guys! I'm finally to the point where I am caught up and my checks can now but put towards bigger items. But I am unsure on what order I should fund things. So if I list out all the things that need saved for or paid maybe you guys can give me an order to work towards.

I need $640 for winter animal food / testing. This would be spread out over the next several months.

The LOC still has $4,000 on it. Any amount we pay towards it is less debt for when we do the construction loan.

I would like to contribute $1,500 more towards my Roth IRA before tax season.

We need to come up with a $2,500 deposit for our contractor. (We can either save cash to delay getting the construction loan a little while longer, or we can just go ahead and get the loan.)

I'm thinking maybe get the animal stuff out of the way first since it's the smallest amount. But then what?

Obviously we can't finish all of this in the short term, so I'm just wondering where my money is better spent before we get the construction loan. I want to get us as well off as I can before we take on more debt.

Finally an Estimate

November 7th, 2016 at 06:26 am

We finally got a revised estimate back from the contractor after he accidentally gave us an estimate for double the square footage before.

We were expecting the number to drop by at least 30-40%... Well it only went down like $10k. What the heck?

For example, concrete for the 940sf was like $13k and his new number for the 470sf was $11.5k. Gr. It is half the materials and labor. I realize some costs aren't going to go down, but I feel it should be less than that.

Anyway we had gotten another bid from a different contractor who we really liked as well, and were having trouble deciding who to go with. So now it made the decision easy.

They are going to start siding and windows in the next two months. Then we will have until spring to decide if we are really ready to take the big leap and get the addition.

Mortgage is down to $46,179.70

Our LOC expires in a couple days. I stopped into the bank 2 weeks ago to get renewal papers which they said they would mail to us. Well no papers. So now I am going to have to stop in again and bug them. I hate it when people don't follow through with what they say. The story of my life.

My paycheck has apparently got lost in the mail. It was mailed 2 weeks ago and still hasn't arrived. So they are going to have to resend. Arg.

Sponsoring an Immigrant

November 6th, 2016 at 01:10 pm

So I'm in a sticky situation and I need advice.

My best friend married a foreigner, and they can't settle anywhere. He can't work here, she can't work there. They are constantly kicked out of each others countries and keep having a move every few months. She is having a baby, so this isn't a good life style.

They are trying to apply for her husband's green card so he can go to work and school in America and they can settle down. But by US law they need a financial sponsor.

Basically the sponsor agrees that if they can't pay their bills, etc, you take full responsibly for them. You would also be required to pay back any government services they get such as food stamps, medicaid, etc.

While I love my friend she is one of the most irresponsible people I have ever met. I do NOT want to be legally bound to her financial situation. She is at her wits end because literally no one in her family makes the income requirements, or they have been in trouble in the past for tax fraud. So she is reaching out to friends.

She is what I would call a gypsy and has never worked or lived any where more than 4 months. All her friends are the same, and as such none of them have made real wages, or they don't pay taxes.

So that leaves me. The boring person who stayed home and works. I barely make enough to meet the income requirements. When she asked me I agreed to sign for her because I thought I was just vouching that her husband is a good person, and not a bum. But my husband made me back out when we found out about all the financial legalities as well.

Has anyone ever done this? Is it a serious manner, that I am right to not want to do? I don't ever want to ruin my credit, or owe the government for something they do or didn't pay. But if it's mostly just a good faith voucher, I would be fine with that...

I just don't know much about it.

Help?

Medical & USPS

November 2nd, 2016 at 08:04 am

I still owe $750 on the credit card for my medical bills. Not due for another 5 weeks, and I should have checks in the mail coming any time that will cover it! I'll be so glad to have that out of my hair!!

I am so angry at the USPS. They LOST my package containing all my goat lab samples. I had insurance and tracking, and it's just gone. They can't find it. They are saying that priority mail isn't guaranteed so they won't even refund shipping.

They may pay for the cost of the syringes and vials that were in the package if I can come up with a receipt to prove cost. But that does nothing to make up for the 5 hours it took 5 people to catch and draw that many samples.

They have been nothing but rude and snotty to me, And basically said that since the box contains "biohazard" material that from now on when they see us shipping something similar they are purposely going to put it in the slow mail so my package doesn't accidentally contaminate the other mail. The slow mail takes a week, and the samples can only stand being in transport for a couple days. Ugh. I've been shipping these for years and never had a problem with 1 or 2 day mail. I've even double checked with the lab and they said that shipping in the 2 day mail is allowed, and that the post office workers are just being jerks. (I've had problems with this particular post master with other things in the past, and I think she just hates me.)

So now when I ship again I'm going to have to drive to a different post office, so my package isn't automatically marked for slow travel. Seriously I've been shipping these boxes at least once a year for 8 years, and never once has "biohazard" been mentioned, nor has my package taken longer than 2 days to get to the lab. I just shipped a box last month for pete's sake! They have known what was in the boxes the entire time.


Anyway I'm fuming. Mostly over the time lost with having to redo everything again, and the post office's lack of caring or apology at all. They are just like "oops, too bad." How can they just lose a package, and do nothing?

A Sad Week

November 1st, 2016 at 08:22 am

I don't want to go into too many details for privacy's sake. But a very close friend of ours was involved in an accident and indirectly caused the death of one of his co-workers. Our entire community is very shaken up. My mother was also involved and the only witness and although both her and my friend are unharmed they are both pretty upset and traumatized. My friend is feeling a lot of guilt even though it wasn't really his fault. I would appreciate any prayers or good thoughts for him.

It's going to be a hard road of recovery for him. We are doing everything we can, and have been inviting him to our house daily to hang out so he isn't alone while he is temporarily on leave from work. I pray that this doesn't affect his career choice that he loves and has worked so hard for.

I am so thankful that neither my mother or my friend was hurt. It could have been a lot worse than it was. A man lost his life by avoiding hurting them, and he has been honored as a hero. Hold your loved ones close, life is short.

Home Addition Update

October 24th, 2016 at 06:06 am

We got all the goat's drawn for testing yesterday, now just have to pack and ship. I'm glad that job is over and done with. I'm trying to sell a goat to try and help pay for the cost. Which is around $400.

At a recommendation I called another construction company. They came out and looked the very next day, and then gave me an estimate the following day. I was shocked. I am so used to getting the run around for months and never hearing anything back. So now we are just deciding if we are really ready to do this. Our mortgage/taxes/insurance will go up about $300 a month. Whew. Which is still within most people's mortgages, but we've been used to paying such a small amount it's going to be hard to stomach. So we need to revisit our budget, and think hard about it.

If we are okay, then the bank needs to come out and give our house an appraisal, and after that clears we will be able to get started on building. I am so excited and also nervous. I hope we are not making a huge mistake. We will be more than doubling our home debt. Which sounds scary.

Medical Bill

October 11th, 2016 at 08:11 am

I went and put my medical bill on my credit card yesterday. I had to argue a bit because the lady that had previously offered me 10% off if I paid in full within 30 days wasn't there. The new person said it was only if I had paid that first day. Then she only wanted to give me 10% off what I paid yesterday, instead of off the entire bill. Arg.

Anyway I held strong, and did end up getting the $186 off I was promised. So in the last month I've paid from $1,860 to $1,000. Not bad. I have until Dec. 6th to finish the rest, which is when the credit card will be due.

My animal fund is quickly dwindling from the purchase of winter hay. I'll need to come up with $450 for goat testing within the next 2 weeks, ugh. But I'm expecting to have around 20 kids between December and March. I'm also raising my prices again by $50, so I'm hoping for a nice profit this year. Definitely hope to put more of a buffer in the animal fund so wintertime isn't such a burden.

Late Payment

October 8th, 2016 at 08:13 am

Oh my goodness I made a mistake. My mortgage is due on the 10th, and I meant to pay it last night but forgot. When I logged in this morning to pay it, it said my payment was past due... Then I realized Monday is a holiday so my payment won't post until the 11th now. ARG!

I called the bank right away, and they said I was fine. My bank has a 10 day grace period, thank goodness. But I feel so dumb. I'm going to have to be more careful with Holidays in the future. I don't usually wait this close until the payment, but it's just the way paychecks fell. Yikes!

Mortgage is down to $46,355.72

Relaxing Weekend & Taxes

October 6th, 2016 at 06:53 am

My husband is going camping this weekend with some friends and I'll have the whole house to myself. I'm kind of excited to be able to lay around, clean, catch up on some chores, etc.

I'm sending $500 for estimated taxes today. I am so lost when it comes to being self employed and paying taxes. But since I have my part time job, I think I'm actually withholding as much or more than I did last year. And I believe if you pay at least 90% of your previous years taxes that you don't have to pay estimated taxes? So actually I don't think I need to send any in, but I'd rather be on the safe side. After this year I'll have a better idea about how much I will owe in the future. For now I've been putting back 25% of all my freelance money. I'll hang onto it until tax time and I know if I owe more or not. Would be lovely to get to keep all that though. Wink


My bank account changed their online portal, and I haven't figured it all out yet. When I tried to submit an extra payment to the LOC I accidentally sent it to the mortgage. Arg. Oh well. It's not worth calling and getting it corrected, it's still paying down debt. Just not the one I was hoping for.

Car Done & Remodeling Questions

September 30th, 2016 at 06:51 am

I had written up a long post days ago and it got deleted and I didn't feel like retyping it all again, so here is the short version.

Car maintenance is done. $552 later. Ouch. Thankfully I have $375 put back for this, and I should have the rest when I get paid on Tuesday. So I'm glad it's over and taken care of.

HVAC guy came out to discuss plans for the addition. After some thought he is urging us to purchase a NEW upflow furnace that we can place in the basement rather than move our new downflow furnace to the addition and have to put it in the master closet. What a bummer to have to replace a furnace that is less than a year old. We knew this was going to cause problems when we bought it but we didn't have another choice at the time. Thankfully he has agreed to buy it back (not at full price) or we can try to sell the old "new" one ourselves. We might loose a thousand or two but we will save in labor costs and also gain more square footage in the addition. So I think it's worth it. He is going to run the numbers and see what the price difference is and then we will decide. Honestly the furnace saved us $1,500 in propane bills last year. So it has already paid for half of it's self. lol.

We are having a hard time deciding what we should prioritize with the addition. I REALLY want to replace all the siding. It's going to look funny to only have one side of the house redone and half of the front, and I worry about leaks where the old and new meet. But to redo all of it is going to be nearly $12,000 more. Which we do not have. Might have to think about this some more, and see if there is something we can cut instead. Might be worth it to wait on finishing the interior, to get all of the exterior done. Thoughts?



FINALLY an Estimate... Sort of...

September 23rd, 2016 at 08:36 am

So the nice contractor got back with me, with an estimate! Big Grin

It's way over our budget. Frown But then I noticed a number that looked weird and I asked about it, and he realized he had accidentally figured the numbers on a 28' x 30' addition rather than the planned 14' x 30'!

So now I have numbers, but they aren't the right ones... lol. But at least this gives us a starting place. Poor guy, I feel really bad that he has to re-figure everything. The total is not going to drop in half because some costs won't change, but I am hoping the estimate will go down by at least 1/3.

But for now, I will share what numbers he gave me. Keep in mind this is for double the size we are actually wanting.

Concrete - $13,600
Excavation - $900
Framing - $13,879
Roofing - $2,874
Electric - $3,256
Lights/Fans - $600
Plumbing - $2,972
Shower - $4,768
Tub - $1,000
Faucets - $600
Vanity - $450
Insulation - $1,222
Sheetrock - $3424
Taping & Painting - $4,650
Doors & Trim - $2,188
Flooring - $4,800
Closet Shelving - $350
Addition Siding - $6,275
Existing House Siding - $11,528
Stairwell Drywall - $1,250
Repair Sill Plate - $500
New Flat Roofing - $2,010
Waterline- $350

Total $83, 446

This is not counting windows or HVAC which I am guessing to be around $10,000 but I haven't gotten recent estimates yet.

$93,500 ish

This includes doing some other projects on the house such as reroofing our flat roof, running a new water line to the barn, residing the entire house, replacing all the windows, new duct work for entire house, drywalling stairwell, etc.

Obviously we can't afford that, but if we can get it down by 1/3, and not do the siding we are getting pretty close to our target range of $40k-$45k. We can whittle down by doing some of the work ourselves such as the painting, electric, trim, etc and choosing cheaper finishes. (He aimed high)

We are getting excited that this may actually be a reality!

My List

September 20th, 2016 at 11:23 am

Okay, I'm late but here is my list anyway.

1. I'm younger than 25.
2. I've been married for 4 years next month, started dating nearly 9 years ago.
3. My husband is the only person I dated and vice versa. Regardless of common stereotypes we have a very happy marriage, and do everything together. (Honestly in 9 years we have rarely/if ever fought about anything, and never raised voices.)
4. I have had 5 heart surgeries and 2 lung surgeries.
5. I have a pacemaker.
6. I have a rare lung disease called Plastic Bronchitis, which has a nearly 50% mortality rate.
7. I'm a web designer.
8. I love animals a LOT.
9. I always ask for power tools for holidays.
10. I love to build things.
11. I play a lot of video games.
12. I have a ridiculous attachment to my pets.
13. I really don't have any close friends.
14. I never clean my car.
15. I'm the world's cheapest traveler.
16. I don't own any makeup or jewelry except my wedding ring.
17. I don't really like kids.
18. I'm a worrier and a busybee.
19. I've never got anything but A's throughout school including college.
20. I was homeschooled 6th - 12th grade.

Here are some very random facts for you. Big Grin


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