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Archive for August, 2008

$240 ticket! they just try to get you no matter what

August 28th, 2008 at 04:43 am

Today DH drove me to work and on the way back got stopped by the police. got $240!!!! ticket for windows being too tinted. What the.... we did not tint it - we bought this car used and never imagined....


few days ago we got another stupid ticket - DH did not put new registration sticker on and it expired in the middle of August (it had 08 08 in big letters so we did not notice). He had already renewed the registration, and the new sticker was in the glove compartment.
I guess we should have paid more attention *sigh* and this one is our fault.

But the tint thing.... we had no idea, never had a warning... no clue - when you buy a car you assume it is tinted to the regulation. They get you for everything. And the fines are huge. We were late by 2 minutes! to the meter - $120 ticket. I hate this city.

I did not spend it because I did not have it.

August 26th, 2008 at 03:17 pm

Yesterday I was coming home tired and knowing there was no food in the house I decided to stop by the Vietnamese restaurant to pick up a spicy shrimp soup and crispy squid.
I was about to order, when I realized I did not have enough cash (and ethnic places really don't like ccs for small orders). So I decided to pass. At home I found some kind of small green squash I bought at farmers market and had forgotten about. So I shredded it and fried up squash pancakes(with egg, pepper and some flour) in 5 min - problem solved (and they were delicious).

Afterwards, I organized my wallet and made sure I had enough cash and.... today forgot the whole thing at home!!!! Cards, ID, everything!
So I scraped up enough change in my purse for a bagel, had to make my own coffee at work (luckily I had cream cheese in work fridge and co-worker had milk). Normally I would have just bought iced coffee on the way ($2).
I know you guys make your own, and if I was driving I would probably do that too... It is much more easy to pick up things when you are on foot and pass 50 shops on your way from the train station to work.
Anyway, I got by and got 2 meals for total of 60c instead of $25 I would have spent.
Now, what am I going to do for lunch?

I can, of course, borrow $10 from a co-worker. or... I have a change box at work and can try to continue my streak.

$100 per hour to sit in the airport club lounge!

August 22nd, 2008 at 04:03 pm

DH is getting "paid" that right now.
He volunteered to give up his seat and go on a flight 4 hours later for a voucher that gives you either a free flight within continental US or $400 of the cost of the fare.

He called me to ask if I would be OK if he did that and got home 4 hours later. I am OK (because I would do it!!!). I have waited in the airport for many hours without getting anything at all for it.

He has access to the club lounge, and he got a food voucher too. So surfing the internet, having free non-alcoholic drinks while sitting in a comfortable chair... it is not so bad. And it is his "travel day" so he is officially working - getting paid to come back home. Tomorrow is a weekend, so it does not matter how late he gets back.
And I'll have dinner and premium margaritas waiting for him when he gets home.

Motivation tricks for big savings goals

August 19th, 2008 at 03:43 pm

Non-retirement ones, that is (for retirement there is a very strong motivation - taxes).

So I really want to save enough money for both of us to take 6 month - 1 year off work to study language abroad. But I end up spending the money on the "right now" fun stuff.
The sum I need to save is too intimidating.

So I have come up with a new trick - I broke down projected expenses into bills to try and save for future bills now.
Rent, utilities, airfare, visa fees, set-up expenses, books, weekend getaways, repatriation fund, etc...

So this month I "pay" few first bills for month 1 in China

food/drink $300
student loan payment $141
utilities (cable, internet, sell phone, electric) $60
Total fund now - $501

Next I should try to pay my first month future rent.

It is more comforting to start with smaller bills, but these add up as well.

Just back from Vegas - cost summary

August 11th, 2008 at 07:00 pm

From Wed till now (I just got to work directly from the airport).

I thought it would be less - we did not do anything extravagant.

$420 my airfare
$24 shuttle to and from the airport
$361 food (we got free hotel breakfast and snacks as platinum members)
$337.00 tickets for "O" Cirque du Soleil, the best seats
$125 new bikini (first one since 2002)
$60 gambling (exchanged $120 of chips, ended up with 60 after 2hrs of playing)
$21.28 sunblock, foaming bath for our insute romantic jaccuzi
$50 tips
-384 per diem

That is a lot, considering we did not have to pay for hotel, DH airfare, car rental and breakfasts.

But it was a nice break and I am happy to have gone. I wish it could be longer!

Spent weekend at home

August 4th, 2008 at 05:14 pm

Did not go anywhere this weekend (except the family tradition Sat. brunch - only $30)

Tried to de-clutter some. Have a long way to go. It did not get cluttered in one day, so it won't get to "zen" decor in one day either.

Found $100 lucky money while cleaning. It will be our "gambling fund" for next week.

Did spend some money though - 68$ on oil and vinegar for salads. I run out of vinegar, did not want to drive to Dean and Deluca, so I ordered it cheaper on the internet ($30) but they had free shipping ($12 savings) for orders over 60$, so I stocked up. Maybe I should have just paid $42 for 2 bottles with shipping than 68 for 5 bottles. But, what done is done, and we'll use it up.