Tuesday, July 29, 2008

A smaller number...

...and not in a good way. I updated my chart through NCN, and my percentage of debt paid is smaller. In other words, we increased our debt load.

I could give all kinds of excuses. I know no one wants to hear them. I will say a chunk of it will be reimbursed.

Sometimes...you just feel like a failure. A phony.

'nuff said. I'm off to mope.

Monday, July 28, 2008

A few things on my mind...part 3 of 3...

I think I'll be dividing this up into three parts - just 3 very different things to talk about regarding money. This is part 3.

The other thing I'm worried about and seem to be thinking constantly about is the shape of the economy and our debt. It looks like we're headed into a time period of high(er) inflation and not-so-great GDP...possibly stagflation like in the 1970's. That would suck.

If you look at inflation numbers and really see what they're saying, we're looking at 10-13% inflation on many goods over the course of the last 12 months. That's scary.

I really don't like going into this with so much consumer debt. It bothers me. And yet, there's little we can do about it that we aren't already doing. We're on a budget. We're working on paying it all off as soon as we can. We aren't adding to the debt.

I'm returning to school in January, which will change things somewhat. It will put my student loans in deferral, opening up another $220 to send to the cc's. It will also open up more money coming in as I move across the salary schedule. My lane will change in January for more pay because I'm taking an online class this fall (teacherspeak for: about another $100 a month or so come January).

We're also (and this moves away from those of you who are ardent, totally follow-the-line Dave Ramsey...) taking out more student loans for me to work on my PhD. We talked long and hard on this, thought it over, and then talked some more. The overdraw on the student loan will allow us to pay off the consumer debt faster, at a lower interest rate which is deductible. I realize this is not terrific, but it will allow us to get the cc's gone faster, as well as the car loan. It will increase our overall student loan debt to a LOT more than what I'd like, but that's the choice we're making. The interest rate is at 2%, it's all one payment, and it's tax deductible.

It will probably put our student loan over $100,000. It will allow us to move through things a little differently, and a little more quickly.

We will probably move this to the BS while paying on the house. Again, not necessarily totally DR-esque, but that's our choice. If we could get the cc's paid off and not use them anymore, we'd be in a lot better shape than many.

Yes, it sounds as if we're justifying. I'm not posting this info on the message board, because I know what will happen. I've always been a believer in taking the plan and making it work for your family, in your situation. This works for us.

Maybe I won't feel like I'm drowning anymore. Maybe it will get worse - after all, we'll owe more on the student loans than on the house. Crazy!

And we'll still sell and send extra - just have more breathing room. And if the cc's are paid off but there's still offers for overage on the student loans, we don't have to take it. We probably will, but we do have the option.

Ugh. Debt depresses me. It's so hard to see a way out.

A few things on my mind...part 2 of 3

I think I'll be dividing this up into three parts - just 3 very different things to talk about regarding money. This is part 2.

I got a great deal at Walgreens on Saturday. I also got in a huge argument with the assistant manager, but I won. I'm sure my photo is now on a back wall in the employee break room somewhere with a warning sign on it.

They had Vive Pro shampoos and conditioners as a buy one get one free for the month of July (expiring Saturday). I had b1g1 free coupons, which makes for nice, free shampoo. BUT - starting Friday, they also had the new Walgreens coupons out, which had a $1 off any Vive Pro purchase. You can use Walgreens coupons with manufacturers coupons at Walgreens, so this was a GREAT deal.

They also had a deal for buy one get one free Dove hair stuff. I had a $1.50 off one coupon, plus a coupon I found on a tearpad somewhere - buy one shampoo + one conditioner, get a hair styler free (like mousse or hairspray). Not bad - 4 Doves for $3.50. Not terrific, but okay. I don't always get great deals on hairspray type things, so I took it (plus, the overage from the Vive deal helped).

I got a few other things to fill in.

The cashier was new.

It all went well until the Dove coupon for the free styler. She didn't just put in the $4.99 - she scanned it. I told her she had already scanned it, and she assured me she'd taken it off already.

Of course, she hadn't. The bill came to $18 something. That didn't sound right, but people were waiting, so I paid. Then I went out to the car to try to figure out what had happened. I finally figured out that she had not only NOT taken the $5 off for the coupon, but she had added another $5 onto my bill - so it was $10 more than it should have been.

Went back in. To cosmetics. Call manager. He starts to look at the receipt and freaks out over the Vive Pro.

So much for trying to fly under the radar. He tells me this shouldn't have happened. I said all the girl did was scan the coupons for the Vive and the register took it off. He said no way. I said my concern was the overcharge for the Dove. Explained again. He said the Vive shouldn't have worked that way.


Finally, I said, "Walgreens allows Walgreens coupons and manufacturers coupons to be used on the same item. You will get your money back from the coupons." He told me it was fraud. I said if the machine took it, it's not fraud. He said the girl had to enter the amount for the free Vive, and she should not have entered $4.99. I asked him to show me on the receipt where I didn't pay $4.99. He couldn't, but still insisted it shouldn't have worked. I said it has in the past, and he said "It won't in the future."

This is where I got really angry. I said, "Really. So, if I go over there right now and do the same exact thing, it won't happen?" He got all red and flustered and said it probably would. I pointed out that this was not the problem.

After all, the problem was the $10 overcharge for the Dove. He started in on the Vive again. I gave him a moment.

Then I said, "If I have to return the Dove to get my money, I will."

"Oh, no, ma'am, that won't be necessary." But he still will not do the adjustment.

"Do I have to return...everything? Because I guarantee, you'll be paying me a lot more than the $10 you owe me right now."

Fluster, fluster, red face. "No, ma'am. I'm just trying to figure out -"

By now, I was very annoyed. I actually said to him, "Do it on your own time. If you want to go make a copy of my receipt, go ahead. I can't help it if I know your coupon policy better than you do. Stop wasting my time."

And he put it through. I even got tax on the $10, which I shouldn't have. He pointed that out. I said I'll consider it payment for the attitude and the time he wasted.

I'm so proud of myself.

But I'll bet I'm on file somewhere in that store. (sigh) And I usually do try very hard to fly under the radar...

A few things on my mind... 1 of 3

I think I'll be dividing this up into three parts - just 3 very different things to talk about regarding money. This is part 1.

I didn't do much this weekend in terms of the making money from stuff we have. My back has been acting up. I will say that I got a great deal at Walgreens (that's another post) and will be putting that stuff in the to-be-sold pile.

I also got the garage (full of rummage stuff) organized enough that we were able to get the riding mower in the garage without having to take stuff downstairs. I got all the crap out of there and that really helped - it filled half the truck bed, just getting the junk out. Then, I organized the garden stuff area, which allowed us to move the tables over there (upright), and moved some boxes around. We still have some furniture to go to Goodwill, but we were able to get the mower in there before we leave for KY, so I'm very happy about that.

I got the paperwork off for the big flea market on Labor Day weekend. I haven't heard back from them yet, though, so I might have to call them.

And I did get the pics ready for ebaying, I just haven't gone down to get the listings done. I am still hoping I can get a few ready to go for while we're on vacation. A lot are similar, and once I write one, the rest will be pretty easy, just to change the pattern number (a lot of vintage patterns).

I might have another rummage sale after we get back, since we didn't have to take the stuff and tables downstairs. Not sure. I am sure that we'll go over to the Sunday flea market at least once more this summer. I'm still positive that we'll make the $1000 by Labor Day.

Thursday, July 24, 2008


Well, I got pics ready for ebay - I just need to get some auctions written up. Took about 40 some odd pics and got them all sized, prettied up, etc. Hopefully I can get some going tonight, so they'll end before we leave on vacation on the 1st.

I got the bills updated last night, too - always a depressing time. It's not uplifting to me at all. Ugh.

We did get all the junk to Goodwill - the back of the truck was full. I might do the flea market on Sunday again. Not sure, but it sure would be nice to get more money in for the stuff I have!

Not much else - but I did get our money paid back for shipping, so I know how much closer I am to my goal of $1000 sold out of the basement by Labor Day!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008


Well, things are a bust for the moment! I'm trying to reconnoiter (what a great word!).

My sister has gone up north to hit the flea market circuit. I can't join her because I'm still teaching summer school, so that stinks. No rummage sale this weekend, no flea market this weekend. Two days ago we were going to go, but ended up not because it was supposed to rain. So...

I'm hoping I can talk dh into going out to the flea market this weekend - we'll see.

BUT -- I did get a bunch of photos taken for ebay stuff. Almost 50, although a lot of them were for the same auction. So my plan for today after work is to resize and upload them, then get at least 3 auctions started. I can handle that.

I also need to update our money stuff so that I can repay ourselves for postage on auctions that ended last week. Then, I'll be able to update my ticker!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

More changes!

Long story short - we can't have the second rummage sale on the 25th & 26th, either! They are resurfacing our road and have signs all over the place that there will be no parking on the road until after July 27th.

This means I have to do some moving around. We're leaving for KY to visit in-laws on Aug 1st, and we need to be able to get the riding lawnmower back into the garage (no room now with all the rummage junk). So I need to sort, donate, and tote back downstairs until we have room for it to fit. Ugh.

And then, of course, tote it all back upstairs at the end of August to take to the big flea market we have planned for Labor Day weekend...

My sister is planning to go back to the flea market again this Sunday, so I might join her, although it's supposed to rain, so I'm not 100% sure if I will. It would be nice to sell more of it, and the drive was not as bad as I thought it would be, but the rain does not appeal to me at all...

Wednesday, July 16, 2008


Well, we pushed the rummage sale back from this coming weekend because we're supposed to have thunderstorms Fri - Sun. I'm glad we did, because I left the house this morning to come to work to find that there are signs all the way down the road saying that they will be resurfacing this week - meaning that no one can park on the road for a week. That would have been horrible!

So - a rummage sale on the 25th & 26th (our anniversary!), then I have to sort. We're going to a flea market over Labor Day weekend, so I'll keep the flea market-y stuff, but some of it is rummage junk and really won't do well. That, I'll need to decide whether I want to store until next year's city-wide sale in June (ugh) or just take to Goodwill (much more likely).

It needs to all come back downstairs because we haven't been able to get the riding mower in the garage with all the crap, and there's no way it can sit outside while we go down to KY to see dh's family. So unfortunately, we'll have to tote it downstairs to bring back up for the Labor Day flea market.

And I'd also like to get some sewing done for that flea market. Once summer school is over, I'm boycotting work for 4 weeks, so hopefully I can get some of it done then.

I have sold some stuff on ebay, but I need to update my little ticker down below after I pay the ebay fees.

Ahh...so much to do on my summer to-do list...lots done at work, very little done at home other than the sales...

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Flea Market Sunday

So...I left the house at 5am, planning to get to the flea market by 6am. When my sister told me it opened. I did get there by 5:50 (no one on the roads! Very little construction!)...but they don't open to sellers at 6am. They open to everyone at 6:30am. So there I sat, practically falling asleep!

Anyway, sold 2 boxes worth of stuff and made $72.50. I don't have huge amounts on my stuff, so unfortunately I don't get a lot for 2 boxes of stuff! :) But - that's less to have to go into the garage, and more into my goal.

My sister did show up, and she did really, really well - sold $50 within about the first hour or so! She has bigger things, with higher prices. She really knows her antiques, too.

The real question of the day is...was it worth it? It's nice to get the stuff out, it's nice to have the money...but...it was a half hour drive there and half hour back in the truck (gas hog), plus $10 for the spot (the $72 is after the $10 is already out of my profits), plus getting up at 4:20 am...I'm not sure. I was home by 1:20, which surprised me, but it hit 11am and everyone just started packing up!

This week's plan: rummage on Friday, and my sister wants to go to a different flea market this weekend. I'm not sure if we will - I need to decide soon, though!

Saturday, July 12, 2008


The sale went pretty well today - not as much as we would have gotten if we had put our stuff out during the city-wide in early June (just more people around then!), but okay. We ended up with $250.50 after taking out the money I need to pay my sister - my mom brought down a bunch of vintage jewelry and told me I could keep half of what they sold for, but needed to give my sister half, too. Nice mom. :)

I have so much left - there were 6 boxes that I couldn't even get out there because I was out of room, and at least 6 left in the basement that I couldn't get to (timewise). So, we packed it up and will open again next weekend. My sister says she will come down. Hopefully, she'll show up this time.

I also packed some of the stuff into the truck to take to a flea market tomorrow. It's going to take about an hour to get there (back roads - the highways still have some water on them, but there's also construction at the main turn I needed to take...figures...). We'll see how that goes. My sister is supposed to meet me there, and she better darn well show, because dh isn't coming along and I'll need company. And someone to watch my stuff while I go to the bathroom. :)

Okay - I'm just pooped, so I'm heading off to bed. I updated my ticker...cuz it's just cool. :)

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Rummage Sale!

Well, the sale is Saturday. Unfortunately, it's supposed to rain. All morning.


I have so much crap going into this sale, it's not even funny. Boxes and boxes and boxes. If we sell even half, it will be awesome. My basement looks so much better when it's not busting at the seams. Dh asked, since it's supposed to rain, if he needs to bring all the stuff upstairs still. Ah...yeah. If it stops raining, or if they're wrong, I spent $20-some odd on ads and we're going to open up! (Let's see...$22 for the "free" paper, and $8 for the local paper - $31 for ads. That sucks.)

And I didn't even put a rain date in the ads. Lesson learned - use an extra line and put a rain date in the ad.

So - in a worst case scenario and it doesn't stop raining until noon. We plan to pack up the truck and go to the flea market about a half hour away, and then plan the rummage for next week. A little bitty ad will mean another $10 or so in ads, but I'm sure we wouldn't get much traffic without ads. :(

Okay - off I go to work on some stuff. More boxes, more boxes!

Monday, July 07, 2008

Monday, Monday...

Well, I was able to get a lot done over the long weekend to get ready for the rummage sale. I also have about 15 auctions on ebay that will be ending this week - cross fingers that I have some decent sales! Right now bids are at about $35, with quite a few still open with no bids.

I went through all the material and sewing stuff in the studio and found 4 totes full of stuff & another box to go in the sale. Someone who sews will get some great deals at this sale, that's for sure.

I also went through the stockpile to donate and sell...and another dozen boxes or so. There's still a ton of stuff in the back of the basement that need to be priced.

Dh will be getting me some room in the garage soon, and then I can get some of this stuff upstairs. It's supposed to be warm & humid on Saturday, which isn't great but I can handle it as long as it doesn't rain.

So - no update on the ticker yet, but I will be able to by the end of the week!

Friday, July 04, 2008


Well, I got so much done yesterday, I could just bust! It was great, and I was even able to cross two things off my summer to-do list.

Not much of it has to do with money stuff, so I won't go into huge detail, but I did get the ad in the free paper for the rummage sale next Saturday, returned a purse I had bought, and got to the bank.

I also stopped by the antique mall in town where my mom has a case and found an open case closer to the checkout, so I moved all our stuff to that one. Mom was REALLY happy.

I sorted and packed NINE boxes worth of stuff for the rummage sale! That was amazing. Went through the stockpile for donation and sales...poor thing looks so small now...

Wendy mentioned the SecondSpin website - I had seen that link on LLNOE, and put all our DVD's in there to see how much they'd offer. They came back with a little under $2 per movie on average ($47 for 24 movies I had in that pile still). We decided to try the $4 each or 3/$10 at the rummage sale and see what happens. If there's any left after the sale and the flea market, I'll try them again. Some of the movies, they would only pay a quarter for! For that, I'll try the rummage sale. But thanks for the idea! :)

Okay - gotta go plan my 4th of July. Our little town has the nicest parade I've ever seen - the whole place goes all-out and the parade is about an hour and a half long. I also want to get through more boxes and get the material ready for the sale!

Wednesday, July 02, 2008


So...dh agreed to go through the DVD's we have to see what we'd be willing to sell. We can't even use our DVD player right now because it's broken, but I don't really miss it all that much...

Well, we found about 30 DVD's that are going in the sell pile. We haven't agreed on a price at the rummage sale for them yet (I'm leaning towards $4 each or 3/$10), but I told him I'd check online to see if we could sell any for more.

So I went through all of them and found a few that are worth it to list on ebay, they should sell for $10 - $15 each. But the BIG surprise for the evening:

The Great Waldo Pepper (with Robert Redford, from the early 1970's) is selling on ebay for over $40!!

Holy buckets!

I am so excited - dh is agreeing to sell it, too. So tomorrow, off it goes onto ebay! Woo hoo!

I gave myself permission...

well, last night, I broke down. I gave myself permission to use the CC at Walmart. I have no good excuse. I was feeling crappy, I was tired, hungry, and very much in "princess" mode.

The good news is...that I didn't do it. I couldn't find anything I wanted to buy enough to use the cc.

I think that's amazing progress. Don't you?

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

A few things...

Well, a few things have been going on.

First - found a rug shampooer for $15 at an auction. Relatively new, and seems to work okay. This is GREAT news because we were going to buy one with the summer school check - at about $200 at Walmart. So - a SUPER deal.

Second - I've been working really hard on getting stuff sorted and ready for the rummage sale, ebay or the flea market. I have many boxes ready to go for the rummage sale (already priced, even), and have listed 7 things so far on ebay in the last week and a half or so. Not many bites, but that should improve. I also have gone through the stockpile to see what will be donated to flood victims around here and what will just go into the rummage/flea market pile.

Third - I've been brainstorming business ideas. Some revolve around the web page and etsy, some around flea market sales. Still working on those.

Fourth - I've submitted a few more things to Associated Content, which doesn't bring a ton, but if it only takes a half hour to throw an article together, it all works out.

Fifth...is there a fifth? Umm... not really. Or at least, not that I can think of right now. :)