Project Backup

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I’m falling behind (WAY behind) in my resolution to only take on one project at a time.

My kitchen has plenty of cupboards, but they all open away from the stove. That makes it hard to access spices while cooking.

I bought a metal tray at an antique store and nailed it up over the stove (very low-tech, I know). Then I bought these magnetic spice tins from Amazon. I filled the tins with my most commonly used spices, added these labels, and plopped them up on the tray for easy access. One project down, untold multitudes to go.

SPICE TINS

SPICE TINS

Here’s the basis for the next project. I bought this picture from Goodwill for the frame. I’m going to replace the print with my affirmation, “Life is sweet”, and hang it over the kitchen sink.

FRAME FOR "LIFE IS SWEET"

FRAME FOR “LIFE IS SWEET”

I acquired my Grandma’s two antique dining chairs from No. 4 Sis. I had my handyman do some repairs on them. Now I have to paint them.

GRANDMA'S CHAIR

GRANDMA’S CHAIR

I bought this little footstool from a second-hand store that has, unfortunately, recently gone out of business. I may reupholster it at some later date, but for now I’d like to paint the legs.

FOOTSTOOL

FOOTSTOOL

And yesterday I bought a tiny side table to go with No. 8 Sis’ tiny arm chair. The table was from a soon-to-go-out-of-business antique store. It only cost $4.50! It needs to be painted, too.

TINY TABLE

TINY TABLE

All the furniture on the “paint list” will be painted off-white and then be distressed.

Okay, not untold multitudes of projects, just four.

Time to get to work!

Stay tuned…

P.S. I screwed up one of the Christmas cards I was making. I stamped the sentiment crookedly and tore the paper when I tried to reposition an ornament.

OOPS

OOPS

Instead of throwing my “oops” away, I turned it into a birthday card by putting a matted strip over the sentiment and a matted banner over the tear. I like it even better than the Christmas card I was trying to make!

SAVED!

SAVED!

Stay tuned…

 

2016 Resolution Update, March

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I started March with $832 in my Cush Fund (my savings account which provides my tight budget with a little “cushion”).

I had to withdraw $237 for Bella’s vet bill. Oh my Goddess, that vet appointment was so traumatic that I’d pay them another $237 to never have to go back again.

I added $106 of overtime pay and a $50 medical reimbursement to the Cush Fund in March. My final March balance was $751. One step forward, two steps back.

Not to worry, I’ve already received a larger medical reimbursement in April, and I’ll be getting an extra paycheck, too.

piggy bank-1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTIONS, 2016:

  1. CANCEL ALL CREDIT CARDS EXCEPT NEW 0% AND MY BANK VISA. I paid off all my credit cards except the new 0%, but I haven’t cancelled them yet. Must do!
  2. BUILD UP $1200 EMERGENCY  CUSH FUND. I have $751 in the Cush Fund. I started March with $832, withdrew $237, and added $156 (overtime pay and medical reimbursements).
  3. PAY CASH FOR EVERYTHING. (No new charges). Success!

Stay tuned…

2016 Resolution Update, February

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My No.1 financial tip: If you’ve put yourself on a strict budget, and find yourself thinking, “This isn’t so bad; I have plenty of money,” PANIC! Panic immediately, because something has gone horribly wrong.

That’s what I learned in February when I got two credit card bills that I wasn’t expecting. Apparently I hadn’t changed my blog expenses and my on-line grocery orders to my cash card. They went on credit cards instead.

Of course I’d already spent that “extra” money in my checking account.

I switched the accounts to my cash card and paid off the credit cards immediately. I had to withdraw $354 from my Cush Fund to do it.

Sigh. Two steps forward, one step back.

NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTIONS, 2016:

  1. CANCEL ALL CREDIT CARDS EXCEPT NEW 0% AND MY BANK VISA. I paid off all my credit cards except the new 0%, but I haven’t cancelled them yet. Must do!
  2. BUILD UP $1200 EMERGENCY  CUSH FUND. I have $832 in the Cush Fund. I started February with $847, withdrew $354, and added $340 (overtime pay and medical reimbursements).
  3. PAY CASH FOR EVERYTHING. (No new charges). As I mentioned above, I kind of screwed this one up in February, but I paid everything off right away (after I belatedly panicked).

I have a little more overtime pay coming in March, and I’ll see if I can scrounge up some money elsewhere, too.

piggy bank

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Stay tuned…

The Ghost of Christmas Future, and New Year’s Resolutions

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This Christmas is over, and after all the gift-giving, card-sending, partying and over-eating, all I want to do is…start on next year’s preparations.

Am I sick, or what?

It might be because I never finished decorating for this Christmas. Or it might be because I haven’t had time to do anything very creative for a while, so I want to make some more Christmas cards and some earrings to give as gifts. Goddess knows, I have enough earrings for my own wearing for this lifetime!

But, it’s New Year’s eve today, so I must review my 2015 resolutions to see how I did.

2015 RESOLUTIONS:

1. CUT CREDIT CARD DEBT BY HALF.

Oh my, oh my. This was a complete and utter FAIL. I started 2015 with $8000 in credit card debt, and ended 2015 with $12,600 in credit card debt. I had approximately $6000 in medical bills this year, while I had $1500 budgeted. I also had to buy new tires for Gypsy Blue, to the tune of $1000.

This week I withdrew $4500 from my retirement savings (gulp) to pay off the “small” cards, and I refinanced the $8100 balance on an expiring 0% interest card to a new 0% interest card.

2. CONTINUE DECLUTTERING AND BLOGGING.

This went pretty well, if slower than I would’ve liked, so I’ll call it a WIN. Yay!

I started 2015 at 231 bags, boxes and small pieces of furniture cleared out of the house, and ended the year at 309.

3. CONTINUE TO COOK, AND EAT WELL.

This was a 50-50 success-fail. I had a weight loss of 25 pounds, then fell of the lo-carb wagon in slo-mo, gained 15 pounds back, got back on the wagon, lost 8 pounds, fell off the wagon from Thanksgiving through Christmas, got back on the wagon, lost 2 pounds…

Up and down, back and forth, to and fro…you get the idea.

I just decided, a tie is a WIN.

4. TAKE A PHOTOGRAPHY COURSE.

FAIL. I bought a new camera last year and can’t even figure out how to turn it on.

5. TAKE TECH WRITING COURSE.

FAIL. This was an “I should do this to try to make extra money” resolution. My heart wasn’t really in it.

6. LEARN TAI CHI.

FAIL. This was an “I should do this to make Dr. Paul, my naturopath, proud of me” resolution. My heart wasn’t really in this one, either.

I didn’t make a resolution to get back into my Herbalism course, but I started it up anyway. I had left it a little while (cough*years*cough) ago, when I was just 60% through part one of three. I finished parts one and two this year! Yay! BONUS WIN.

TOTAL: 3 WINS, 4 FAILS.

Embarrassing to admit, but probably my most successful year ever.

HAPPY NEW YEAR! MAY 2016 BE THE BEST EVER!

HAPPY NEW YEAR! MAY 2016 BE THE BEST EVER!

NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTIONS, 2016:

  1. CANCEL ALL CREDIT CARDS EXCEPT NEW 0% AND MY BANK VISA.
  2. BUILD UP $1200 EMERGENCY FUND. (Not much, but $1200 more than I have right now).
  3. PAY CASH FOR EVERYTHING. (No new charges).

Of course, I want to eat well more consistently, and I want to continue decluttering, and I want to learn to use that damn camera, but I don’t want to focus my resolutions on those things.

Hey, to make sure I’m extra successful, maybe I should resolve to NOT take a tech writing class or learn Tai Chi!

Stay tuned…

p.s. I made $59 extra in December. I sold $24 worth of household goods to a thrift store and won $35 at the casino.