4.06.2016

On Determining Long Term Goals

Greetings from cyberspace! If you are employed, generally one has work goals and objectives that will assist their managers during review time. And on most personal finance blogs, we see the same thing. For example for myself, I have very specific goals to help me pay down my debt. But I was asked the other day about long term goals. To be honest, in the past, when I have made them, I never had the focus and drive to accomplish them. I was living one day at time. However, yesterday was my ex-husband's 65th birthday.  Officially retirement age (even though he has been medically retired for almost 20 years). I'm going to be 53 this year. I have 12 more years to get my crap settled. And if I continue on this debt path, I won't be able to retire. And then I started thinking about my living condition. I don't want to rent a room for the rest of my life. I want to be to have my own domain. Whether I rent an apartment/studio or buy a little place of my own, I know that it needs to be done sooner than later. As as friend wrote to me in an email, think ahead, and set a moving fund. Well, as soon as I can get the Emergency Savings funded, that will occur. Which this means so tweaking to the budget. (What else is new). Personally for now, I would not mind being in a studio. I've priced them out and on my current budget, it is almost doable, but there was be NO room error. Not sure if I want to put myself in that predicament, but I am sure if had to, I can do it. It is just going to take a lot of courage to say NO to people and myself when I want to go out and spend. So if I were to have ONE long term goal, it would be to get my own place. Now, it is time to make an action plan to make this a reality.

4.01.2016

On Finishing Off March

Greetings from cyberspace! Whew! I got thru March... AND the first quarter of 2016 without too much hoopla! Or damage. Or barely any crisis.  So let's talk about March and how I did.  I started the process of eliminating the alimony payments.  I have a phone call with the attorney office next week to go over the details. Progress is being made.  I have also been very conscious of my spending, Writing down what I have been spending. So here is what I accomplished in March:
  1. Balance transfer to clear out credit card with highest interest
  2. Filled out paperwork to eliminate alimony payments
  3. Re-calibrated budget
Here is where the debt stands:
  1. I made great progress on paying down some of the debt, meeting my goal of paying down minimum of 5% of the debt by end of quarter one.
  2. Paid off 3 of the small credit cards. 
Of notice, I stuck to my guns regarding paying extras around the house. If I didn't have the cash, I refused to put it on my credit card. The only thing I have not been able to do is to put additional money into the emergency savings fund. There are still a few things that I am working on, but I am hopeful to start really funding it in May. Another thing I need to work on is blogging. I have not been motivated nor much material to blog about. And I have been in a funk recently (lots of personal issues) and so it has impacted my creative juices.

Well... my fellow cyberfriends... I will see you later!

3.28.2016

On Meeting First Quarter Goal

Greetings from cyberspace! Really not much to say today... except.... I made my quarterly financial goal to pay off 5% of my debt. And am on track to meet the next quarterly goal well ahead of schedule. If keep this up, I will definitely meet these goals. The trick is to NOT add any more credit card debt.  Really working hard to not let that happen. Just keeping pretty much to myself and not spend unless I need to.  It has been a challenge recently, but I will get through it. It is really going to be a challenge in August when I go see Buttercup. But I am confident that I will be able to control my spending by then.

Until then - I keep trudging along.  Bit by bit.

3.22.2016

On Streamlining Debt Payments

Greetings from cyberspace! Sorry for being MIA. It's been a hectic couple of weeks. Trying weeks. I can't even begin to tell you. Work has been busy. Life, equally busy. All in all, I have been okay. Plugging away at the debt. Doing some streamlining. I did some investigating about a balance transfer, and found a good one with my Discover card. Thus, I did a balance transfer to clear out my highest interest card. I then paid off Amazon, Lowe's and PayPal. I have two more small credit cards to get rid off, and then I can focus on the bigger cards. Life is a bit boring, but it will get better. Still working on balancing the budget, trying to get rid of the alimony. Not exactly in a rut, but no real excitement. That's about it.

3.08.2016

On Getting a Promotion

Greetings from cyberspace! Sorry I haven't been around lately. It has been a very crazy few weeks at work. I have been so exhausted, that I have not been able to even think of topic to post. However, today, I have something to share.  Today I had a pay planning meeting with my manager today. Now, in today's economy, our merit pool was not that big, however, I did get a reasonable merit along with a promotion, so I got a nice bump. If times were better, it would have been a bigger bump - but I am satisfied with what I received. And for THAT I am grateful. There has been a lot going on, but right now I don't have the energy to write about it. So, stay tuned for a long post sometime this weekend.

3.02.2016

On Finishing Off February

Greetings from cyberspace! Is February over? Really??? Wow! This month flew by. I don't know where it went.  So let's talk about February and how I did.  I had one main action item that I wanted to do for February - and that is the process of eliminating the alimony payments. I have the information, but each I remember to follow-up, I get sidelined. Buttercup has had to go to the hospital several times. I definitely need to get moving on this.  So here is what I accomplished in February:
  1. Set up automatic payments on all credit cards
  2. Implemented an envelope system for gas and variables
  3. Investigated several balance transfer options
Here is where the debt stands:
  1. I made progress on paying down some of the debt.
  2. Redirected all my automatic payments (insurance, Netflix) to my credit union account.
  3. I still have to get my car repairs finished, but I am hoping by next month I will have saved up enough to get it done without putting it on credit. Thank goodness. 
Now, if I can just get through this month without any crisis.

2.18.2016

On Dropping Gas Prices

Greetings from cyberspace! It is nice to see the gas prices dropped, however, it has impacted a friend of mine. He worked (notice past tense) on an oil platform and was laid off. What made it bad is that he drives three hours to get to where he has to take a boat to the platform. Yesterday he noticed a call from the foreman, but couldn't take it until he got to the dock. He was told then he was not needed. That was that. I mean, they could have called him before he left his house. We had talked about the situation previously, and he knew that he could be laid off, but he did not think it would be this soon. His financial being is now uncertain. However, he has a positive attitude that when one door closes, another opens. I admire him for this. And as his friend, I offer my moral support, for he has been a good moral support for me recently. So when you see that gas prices drop, realize that someone may have lost their job.