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Archive for September, 2012

Sold baby car seat!

September 28th, 2012 at 03:04 pm

For only $50, but I got tired of it taking up space in my apartment, so I priced it cheapest by far. I'm also glad that somebody will get to use it, it is like new and can serve its function well.

I also bought a crate and barrel 10% off coupon for $3.99. Since I plan to buy something for $219, it will save me some money.

Went to Philly for 2 days.

September 25th, 2012 at 02:16 pm

And had a nice time.

Found a great rate for the Ritz Carlton,


went to listen to some jazz in the evening,


had some drinks and walked back to the hotel, during the day we walked around downtown and had relaxed lunch.


I even like the road trip part of it.

Baby stayed with my mom.

I wish we could get away on a regular basis. That would have to be with the little one(my mom only stayed the weekend as a part of my birthday present). But the baby would have fun if he came with us. But I'm concerned if he would have trouble adjusting to falling asleep in a hotel room.

Do you relax your spending in months when you make extra income?

September 24th, 2012 at 10:28 am

When you have overtime or made a good investment and make more in a particular month than just your salary, do you relax your spending on "wants" or do you honestly remain as disciplined as ever?

"unexpected" earnings feel so good because they are not budgeted for. It is easy to get carried away because you belive you "deserve" to relax more when money you could not count on getting and it has not been allocated in advance.

2012 financial goals September status

September 17th, 2012 at 02:52 pm

1) Max ROTH me DONE
2) Max ROTH DH (money is there, we just did not put it in yet - not sure where to put it)
3) Max ESA (have the money, but have not opened the account yet -- Place where I have LOs ESA currently no longer accepts new contributions)

4) Get retirement accounts to 200K DONE
(balance 205K as of today).

5) Get EF to 60K DONE! (balance of today 68K)

Both of those are invested aggressively, so it can go down some, we need to contribute more to make sure we keep investing when market dips, so we don't dip below those markers

2012 Lifestyle goals:

Catch up on vacations: DONE

9 days Vail, Colorado ski vacation
8 days Florida (4 Disney)
5 days Savannah/Hilton Head/Atlanta
6 days Japan
25 days China (partial vacation, I had to be in class 4 hours a day)
few occasional 1-2 night hotel getaways

Home improvement:

New nice big screen TV DONE
50 inch 3D Samsung

Custom window shades / still to do

Custom closet -
I want to, but I'm scared. Both of the process of picking out exactly what I want once and for all times and the cost, and of finding the right contractor

My 2013 goal
Remodel kitchen -- see the above x10! I am too chicken for that experience.

Celebrated Bday in DC for free!

September 14th, 2012 at 12:18 pm

We just came back from DC. I took two days off and joined DH on his business trip. (Baby stayed with grandma for these 2 days).

We had a nice road trip, DH went to work and I launged around. After work we went out.

Gas, tolls, hotel (a nice one, JW Marriott), were covered by his employer, plus his per diem covered our meals. So basically it was a free trip for us.
On the way back, however, I went shopping in Christiana mall in Delaware.

I bought a bunch of stuff, including a swimsuit and cover-up that I like! (That is a feat, any woman will tell you that shopping for swimsuits is not fun for most). So when you see one that looks good on you, you must buy it. Than a pottery barn lamp and shade, a mini-wallet and an orange-accent fall-colored soft light cardigan.

So my shopping blew through some of my allocated budget categories. But I made $520 on an apple option that day, so that was extra income. (though more like $340 after we pay taxes on it). I wish I held it for one more day. But I was kind of a risk averse -- it had a short expiration.

It was a very nice birthday, DH tried very hard to do anything to make me enjoy myself. And this weekend, he will take care of baby all by himself as the last part of my present. The first part was in July when he bought be ridiculously expensive gift in Japan -- Mikimoto and Tasaki jewelry. (that was enought to cover Bday and our first round anniversary, yet he still wanted to do more). He is amazing.

Your ridiculously expensive dream vacation?

September 6th, 2012 at 02:31 pm

For me a special vacation would be:

1. Iceland.

Go on a great 5-7 days horseback trip across a beautiful landscape on an icelandic horse.

Dive Silfra and Strýtan. (very unique dive sites!)

Kick back for 2 days in Reykjavik.

Rent a camper or a car and explore remote parts of Iceland, camping or farm stays.

Visit Blue Lagun for 1 day.

About 3 weeks total.

Vacation #2

Fly to Singapore, spend 5 days there than off to the main attraction - Maldives. Stay in one of those over the water luxury bungalows, like this one
http://www.guidetomaldives.co.uk/2009/huvafen-fushi-maldives-strictly-for-the-self-indulgent/
but those are like 2 k a night with 3 nights minimum, and I can't bring myself to enjoy that, even though I think that Iceland vacation would run more expensive in total (but thats over 3 weeks). Plus, not only airfare to get there, but airfare betwen the islands is very expensive as well.

We've been to many great vacations, spending a month abroad each year, and I always want to plan and look forward to something. I think this would be special. After we come back from Vail I will start pricing out Iceland and see what our time frame would be. There is a ton of research to be done on details in order to make the choices we will enjoy the most. (and from what I've seen of Iceland prices it is not pretty).

But we'll see -- as with other vacations, we set a goal, and plan to make it happen. It is not instant, but so much more rewarding.

What is your dream vacation?

Weekend was all about baby

September 4th, 2012 at 03:00 pm

As pretty much all of them Smile

Thursday - Bronx Zoo

Friday - Children's museum

Saturday - Swimming pool and dancing -- place where we had dinner had a live band and the little one was dancing and dancing. It is so funny to see a 20 month old dance -- he jumps and twirls, and does sit-ups while trying to dance with his hands. He'd twirl until he looses balance and plops on his butt laughing, and that gets up and does it again. So happy.

Sunday - Brunch at a friends house and and Children museum again

Monday - Muscoot farm in Westchester - he saw some farm animals -- cows, goats, pigs, chickens, sheep, donkeys, turkeys. They don't keep those at the zoo, so it was good for him to see real farm animals, not just pictures in books.

We spend most of our days outside. Therefore we ended up going out for many meals (we can keep him entertained until our meal comes by doing puzzles with him on an ipad -- he loves it, he is so proud whenever he finishes one!)

Today -- we are back to work, but my mom had a day off and she is spoiling him right now. She cooks delicious dinners and takes him out to the playground and to ride his tricycle.
We are going to Westchester after work to buy LO a Thomas and Friends railroad set from a craigslist ad -- we agreed on $250, and it would be close to three times that if bought new. I hope it is in good condition.

Tomorrow and Thursday I guess he is going to have to go to daycare. But this Friday I'm off again and on Monday his second grandma will come to stay with him while DH is working from home. So he will have another 4 days of full attention. We are both working full time, so we do what we can.


Another membership - $210

September 2nd, 2012 at 08:24 pm

We got a yearly membership to the Children's museum (it is more of a large indoor play space than a museum). It is good for LOs age.

$210 - by itself not so terrible, but we also have memberships to the Bronx zoo, New York Botanical Gardens, our pool for the season. Together it runs close to $800 per year. We do take him these places. And the zoo and the garden are worth it just so we can park there free (big deal in that area).

It is a lot on one hand, but the little one has fun and these are healthy and developing activities. And compared to the cost of classes in places like Kidville, that run by "semester" that cost $750+... it is relatively cheap. ("semester" - give me a break, it is ridiculous arrangement for a baby under two).