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days twelve through seventeen: a week of boring (so far)

September 29, 2011

The weekend was a success in terms of how many apples I picked and touchdowns I watched my team score, but a failure in terms of my spending. $120 over three days. Ouch. Well… At least I made some memories! … Right?


The rest of the week has been depressingly boring. Between work, meetings and school I’m so busy to do anything else, much less spend money. I did go out for a drink last night … but since the bar I went to has a game where you flip a coin and if you win the toss, your drink’s half off. So I got fairly tipsy for $1.50. Sweet. My total weekday spending this week has been $17.81, all of which was vending machine purchases at work, and $12 spent at a grocery store in order to make some delicious caramel apple pie (the fruits of the apple-picking. hah. see what I did there? So punny.)

I get paid at midnight tonight (THANK GOD) so that means tomorrow I get to do the always-exciting task of divvying up money between must-haves and want-to-haves and credit card payments. Life is thrilling.


days nine, ten, and eleven: in which i have nothing interesting to report.

September 23, 2011

tracking my daily spending makes me realize how boring my life really is, at least during the week. work, school, and more school is about all i ever do. on the bright side, i’m spending hardly money at all! boring life = more money, i guess.  but in the interest of transparency here’s what i have spent:

Super exciting, right?!

 Tuesday I managed to spend less than a dollar … whoo! Bought a Diet Coke and a bag of chips to complement the PB&J I brought from home. Look who remembered to bring a lunch to work! This girl. Yay.

More exciting-ness.

Wednesday was at least slightly more exciting in that I sold my ticket for the upcoming HUGE football game to my friend. Monayyyy! I also play bags at a bar close to campus on Wednesdays. For those of you unfamiliar with bags, it’s basically a game where you compete against another team of two to throw bean bags into a hole cut into a board … it’s a lot more fun than it sounds. Anyway, the $15 for “entertainment” was refreshments bought. Playing bags makes you really, really thirsty.

Like this. Except I don’t play on a manicured lawn.

So that was my exciting Wednesday. Which led to a very sleepy Thursday in which I caved AGAIN to the lure of Jimmy John’s. I branched out and got a Pepe this time in the name of broadening my horizons … and was severely disappointed. Sticking to the Vito from now on. However, I managed not to spend anything else, so that’s a positive.

JJ’s, why must you be so seductively delicious.

This weekend promises to be an AWESOME one full of fun with friends, football, and apple picking (ooh, two out of three, alliteration is not my strong point there) but in pursuit of saving pennies I will try to limit my apple picking to only a bushel. or five.


day eight: in which i need to quit snacking.

September 20, 2011

I have a deep, deep devotion to the art of snacking. I can wax eloquent on the different types of Cheez-Its and which ones are superior forever (try Cheez-It Snack Mix and you will never go back, I promise. All others pale in comparison.) But really???? All I spent money on yesterday is snacks? On one hand, it’s good I’m not running out and running up huge shopping bills. On the other hand, COME ON. That’s a little ridiculous. 

My justification goes: I was running late and dashed from work to class with only a spare moment to pick up some Gardetto’s and a Diet Coke. And, yes, my friend convinced me to go down the street and get snacks. And I got a pretzel with cheese. Oh, glorious processed cheesy cheese…

Mmmmm. Looks tasty. Not.

Actually, now I’m grossed out that I ate cheese with my pretzel.



September 19, 2011

So, a very immature title for something important but:

I paid off ONE OF MY CREDIT CAAARDS! That $76.40  I put toward it my last payday did the trick. I was waiting until now to say anything so I could show off this very artfully done rendition of what my online statement looks like:


i’m very artistic. you get the point.

I’m beyond excited that I knocked out the card with the higher of the two interest rates so quickly… this makes me optimistic that I can kill the rest of my debt before my goal of Halloween still!! One thousand, one hundred and thirteen dollars and ninety three cents to go! It looks terrible when I write it out like that. Bleh!

Cutting up the card was one of the best feelings ever. Snip, snip snip .. I am reminded of that episode of The Office.. I think it was called “The Dinner Party” .. anyone else remember? “Michael Scott: snip snip! snip snip! snipsnip!” I can only imagine the elation I will feel when I pay off the other one 🙂
The one thing I can’t decide is what is best to do with the now paid-off card. Do I cancel the account or do I let it sit around? I know that cancelling it dings my credit report, but I’ve only had it since November, so I wouldn’t be losing out on the “Length of credit history” aspect of my credit report… Hmmm. Decisions.


days five, six, and seven: in which i celebrate a birthday, watch some football, and have big news!

September 19, 2011

It was a busy weekend! I know you were all waiting anxiously to see my weekend spending habits… so without further notice..

Day Five: In Which I Celebrate a Birthday (not mine, unfortunately)

Friday was a pretty ridiculous day, money-wise. I went out to lunch with one of my bestest friends to Panera … and although I originally was going to just get a bagel, caved to my hungry stomach and got the You-Pick-Two combo. I’m such a sucker for garden veggie pesto soup. Need to work on my willpower… Anyway, that was $7.30 … small price to pay, I guess, for a great lunch with a friend!
Later Friday, I made the journey back to my hometown for my brother’s birthday and you know what that means – gas money. Lots and lots of gas money. $55.00 ($20 cash, $35 on my debit card) to be exact. Yuuuuck. Poor little Lexi (my car, although when my brother was driving it last spring, he insisted on calling it VOLTRON. UGH NO. Such a boy name!) was tired after all that trekking up and down I-80.

On the rooooad again... (photo credit OKRoads)

Additionally, I pulled an extra $20 out of my account for a present for the birthday boy. I had no idea what to get a 17 year old boy, so I ended up going with a gas gift card and a gift card to his favorite restaurant. Never fails. I know some people frown on getting/giving gift cards as presents, but I only have a problem with it when it’s a gift card to somewhere generic, like Target. If it’s a gift card to a place I know he loves and will use at the first available opportunity, I think it’s actually pretty thoughtful. Plus. it’s way easier to wrap a gift card than a Philly cheese steak.

On the bright side, I got a delicious dinner out of the whole trip! Thanks mom and dad!! And of course some quality family time 🙂 AND I FOUND THREE PENNIES.

Day Six: In Which Football Saturday Gets the Best of Me

In my college town/state, football is king. KING. Frat boys wake up at six AM to blare the theme song down Greek Row, just in case anyone forgot there was a game that day. So it’s a fun day full of tailgating and mingling with other fans all decked out in our school colors. I actually ended up in the black for this day … I sold my ticket to the game for $20 to a friend, then turned around and spent $7 on pizza (DELISH pepperoni pizza, so it was totally worth it) and $8.01 on a six-pack of delicious Honey Weiss beer for a full day of tailgating. Pizza and beer. God, what a stereotype.

At any rate, I came out with $4.99 for the day! Not good, but not bad, I suppose.

Leinenkugel.. mmm

I think I like this formatting in my excel sheet better... hmm.

My weekly spending total was $322.77 by my calculations. Of that, 56% went to my credit cards and 12% went toward eating out. For this coming week, I’d really like to cut down on eating out. Which I guess won’t be hard when I have almost no money in my checking account! This girl needs to remember to bring her lunch to work.

Sunday started a whole new week of penny projecting. It was the best day because…

Day Seven: In Which I Have My First ZERO CENT DAY!

WHOOO! Part of me thought this was an urban legend. Could I really go a day without spending a cent? Turns out, yes, yes I can! I was busy most of the day with meetings (and they gave us free ice cream … yay!) and then went out to dinner with my boyfriend’s family, they were nice enough to buy. Indian food … mmm. Lamb vindaloo and naan, get in my tummy. It was scrumptious to say the very least.


So all in all, although Friday was a bit of a money suck, it was a great weekend! Mostly because of some….


I quit my UWJ!!! (Unfortunate Waitressing Job). I’d never straight out quit a job before. It was awkward and a little nerve wracking, but worth it for me. My bank account is a little upset with me, because that’s a loss of about $60-80 each weekend that I work, but between school and my primary job, it was getting to be too much. Like I said, my whole aim in paying off my debt is to work toward paying it down, while at the same time being able to still do fun college activities (and drink Diet Coke, obviously).

It’s my senior year of college … and while money is a huge concern and I’m still completely focused on getting rid of my debt and credit cards, I don’t want to look back and have regrets that I didn’t hang out with my friends enough because I was killing my soul trying to get my debt paid down by Halloween… If it takes me until Thanksgiving I’ll be okay with that too (haha). Some debt experts advocate a no-holds-barred approach to paying down debt, but for my current life situation and income, I just don’t see that working and still being able to maintain a happy balance.

Thoughts? Do you guys think it’s better to sell your soul to a corporate restaurant chain to pay debt down sooner? Or should I enjoy life and take a  juuust a leeeetle bit longer to pay it off? I’ve chosen the latter 🙂

day four: in which my bank account gets bullied by my credit cards.

September 15, 2011

You win again, CCs.

Good things about today: PAYDAY! Also, I had my first Pumpkin Spice Latte from Starbucks of the season ($4.00.. It was supposed to be $4.14, but I snagged $0.14 from the take-a-penny leave-a-penny. Note to self: bring an extra quarter next time I go). Actually, this latte was the main reason I dared to venture outside.

Motivation in a white cardboard cup. (Photo credit

It was FREEZING, rainy, and gloomy all day today here in Flyover Country. It’s like summer and fall got into a fight, and then, out of the blue, winter hopped in, pancaked summer and fall from the corner of the ring, and proclaimed victory. Seriously. That cold. So it looks like I’m going to have to hustle up some money for some closed-toed shoes sometime. Frostbite is not fashionable.

Bad thing about today: Payday means my bank account immediately gets sucker punched by all the automatic deductions I have set up. So right away $112.00 flew off to my credit card. I got slapped in the face with a late fee two days … a mere two days late … SOOOO CLOSE yet so far. I get it, though. Even if I think credit cards are blood-sucking vampires. Except they suck cash. UGH. (Side note: I googled “cash vampires” to see if there was a picture I could insert and the results were truly terrifying. So thanks, but no thanks.) Another $76.40 whizzed away to my retail credit card that I am thisclose to paying off. Tomorrow my SmartyPig deduction will get taken out.. but this involves more money getting deposited into my online piggy bank (my ongoing infatuation with which I expound upon here) so I am OKAY with that. I have named my SmartyPig account Lloyd. I can’t wait until Lloyd gets fat and happy with monaaaay.

So I’ll be hunkering down for a few days until all of the transactions get there, then will emerge from the bunker and survey the damage to my poor checking account. It hates paydays. It always gets beat up. It’s quite a weakling. DOUBLE UGUGUGH.

On the bright side/cash front, I have $12 left over from tips from serving last weekend. Also, the great state of Flyover Country deposited $19.00 into my account, due to a smidgen of leftover goodness from my student loans. so hopefully that will get me through the weekend. Here’s hoping.

Also, I caved again and got Jimmy John’s for lunch ($7.00 with tip). DAMN YOU #5 VITO WITH DIJON. You are so tasty.

My best friend and worst nightmare.