Tag Archive: Budgeting

Falling off the cliff

Things have been very odd around here. Issues with my cousin, my housing, my music, my job, pretty much everything. The waters are smoothing.

I still don’t know what’s going on with my cousin, it seems once a week she calls and leaves a screaming message on my phone that she will be leaving town “tomorrow”. So far as I know, it hasn’t happened yet. I hate that I had to pull away from her totally to preserve my own sanity, and I have also been incredibly ill from tree pollen and a resulting infection.

The illness caused me to badly underperform on my job, and I got written up for the first time in 3 years (on a major issue). But my client is more sympathetic than ever and I appear to have the support of his family.

And it’s hard to sing when you can barely breathe without coughing up a lung. But sing I will. My monthly housefilk was postponed a week — seems the major players forgot to get it on their schedule, and a week later worked better for all of us. So that will be this Saturday. Yay!

I won’t say anything about the housing issue at this time. There is a chance I may need to move, and a chance I may not. Lots of details need to be worked out first on either side. The upshot is an improvement (I think) in my financial situation, and enough in savings that I may not need to ask for help from family in the near future. Of course, the best laid mice and men seem to get other plans… or something like that…

My next performance is scheduled for ConCarolinas in June. I hope I’m in reasonably good shape by then. With the help of my friend Emmie I have found some strings which might make Arthur of the Wood sound better. I have also parted ways with Blue and Disciple (got paid for Disciple and will miss him) and have finally listed some of my extra electronic doodads for sale on eBay.

I hope everyone’s life is calm and that you are getting what you need from the Universe.

Hugs,
Me

Treading water

Well, GAFilk is over for another year. I had a terrific time as I always do (that’s why I keep going, y’all) but it’s over. I have no concrete plans for any other cons this year, although there are 3 cons I’m considering (ConCarolinas, OVFF, and Chambanacon, if you’re curious) depending on funds (of which I have virtually none and have run up too much credit card debt).

Even so, I have a high point every year to look forward to, and it’s not all that expensive ($50 or less for the con, $35 for the banquet, half a hotel room, and some food and parking money). I even wrote a new song this year (not a cheerful one, sadly) and got to perform it.

There were around 160 people this year, and I know and love probably half of that number and would say the same about the other half if I took the time to get to know them. It can also be said that, of the people I know and love and/or respect, 80% of them were or had been in that room this year and/or one of the previous four.

Only 51 weeks to go…

Apparently my position is being eliminated on the 21st of this month, although the company claims they have other positions for me. Until they offer one, I have no idea how that will work out, so it’s a bit itchy.

I don’t believe I mentioned that my new coffeepot (42-cup Hamilton Beach percolator) stopped perking after only 10 weeks and they are dragging their feet replacing it even though they have already charged me for the shipping cost. So, no coffee, have to go to Pilot for a while. Which saves me money on gas…

Hugs,
Me

Moving Update

I’m all moved in at Sojourn, other than the usual unpacking issues. It feels to good to be here.

I need to go back to Blaine to pick Sky up on the 4th and take her to get the moving truck she has rented. Last I heard, her plans are to go to Dayton OH and try to rent an apartment when she gets there.

Now I just have to wait for my deposits to come in so I can catch up on my credit a little. The move has been hard on my finances, as moves usually are. Melanie’s song, “What do I keep, what do I throw away?” forgets the bit about “What do I have to buy to fit my new circumstances.”

I talked to John Noggle last night. He’s in his 3rd week of chemo, something he said previously he was going to avoid. I hope it helps, he has let this go for a long time.

My cousin Maria called last night (actually twice, and both times she was interrupted by a call from her mother). It sounds like she will finally get her way and move to Japan next month, I think she said the 24th. I hope she is safe and happy there.

I have to get my articles in for Peppermint and Sage soon, and learn a new song for Harvest Festival as well as plan a workshop. So I’m busy.

And very happy.

Hugs,
Me

Catching Up Yet Again

I continue to work my new job. While I don’t particularly *like* the guy I’m working for, he needs the help, and so far he dislikes me considerably less than many of the other staff. It’s easier work than before, and as I’m only working 3 days per week (longer hours) it’s about the same amount of gas and I get really long weekends, so overall I’m happy with the new job. My co-workers are a good group of people, and I have options should I choose to no longer work at this house.

I’ll get back to work on fixing the car as the month comes to an end. Tires and injectors are first on the list, struts lower down. I’m really feeling good about how I handled the task and the debt.

Life is moving forward at a nice pace with good possibilities, for all of which I am thankful. If not everyone around me is thankful for their lot, I can offer help without taking responsibility, which is also a new thing for me.

The next steps are within sight. I will continue to take them.

Hugs,
Me

Update on Busy Day

I got out of the Chevy Dealership at just over $1000, with a preferred customer card good for $75 on my next service. The rental car only cost $60, have to wait for them to refund my deposit to my credit card before I get that credit back but that’s all good. I went and bought two tires for the front — that was the greater need, the tire dealer only had two in stock, and I only had money for two.

All in all, a successful day. And before I went to the car dealership, I accepted a credit offer from Barclay’s which gave me a new card with a higher credit limit and lower interest rate than the Chase Amazon card, and they claim I can move the Chase balance to it for a $30 fee (with 0% interest the first year, that’s a huge savings).

I don’t know when I’ll be able to move to my new digs, but there is hope that is moving forward more swiftly than earlier thought.

Thank you, Goddess, for having things fall so neatly into place. If my job had not needed me to go to Knoxville for training and to pick up a certificate on Monday, and I was not scheduled to work until today (Wednesday), I would not have been near the dealership and would have missed work or had more trouble getting done what was needed.

Hugs,
Me

Updates

I just heard that the performance I am to give in a few weeks in Dillsboro, NC was under-promoted, so there will likely only be a few people there. I’ll go anyhow, I love to play places.

I have a housefilk to attend this Saturday at Larry Kirby’s house in St. Matthews, SC. I will be taking Nan with me, picking her up on the way. If all goes well, she will also spend next week at my apartment.

Everything is going smoothly for Atomacon in Charleston, SC. I will have a lot of fun there.  And I hope to find the money soon to go to GAFilk in January, have offered to pay a fair amount on the hotel room this year. I do this just for fun, nobody pays me to go and I don’t get any special concert other than the Twofer. If you’re a filker, missing GAFilk is a mistake.

Work is going fine, and I am certain my help is appreciated by my coworkers, manager, and the guys we support. I have learned that SocSec intends to cut off my SSDI in a couple years if I keep the job (or have another one) until the end of my “3 Year Extended Trial Work Period”, leaving me just short by 3 years or so from getting SocSec Retirement. I think I have things in line to where I can work enough hours to replace most of the lost income and not need the rest of it. Who knows what will happen by then?

Hugs,

Me

Recovery

With my mother’s help, I have a new vehicle. It’s a 2006 Chevy Cobalt with 88,500 miles on it. Paid $5990 plus tax and license. So I got back to work Thursday.

Then I worked day shift AND my regular shift Friday. Day shift Sunday. Extra hours Monday. And more hours Tuesday including working by myself all shift, which should not happen, with the promise of Wednesday off to rest. A lot of this is because my manager’s mother passed away, and he needed more time away to deal with it, as is fully understandable, so I pulled my weight as a member of the team. But I’ve worked at least 42 hours this past 7 days, maybe 45, and I have been feeling overworked at my normal 25.

So then my manager got back today, and asked me to work. I had to tell him no. Instead, I went to take a computer desk back to an ex (had to disassemble it, and reassemble it at her apartment), pick up my computer (which died last Wednesday night, seems to have been a memory chip going bad), and then spend a few hours getting my checkbook spreadsheet caught up. (I haven’t worked on it since I left for Confluence, when I found that their mobile app lets me view, but not edit, my spreadsheets.)

I think I’m caught up. I had some money left over and put it in savings just in case my paycheck is shorter than expected (this next paycheck includes 4 days off out of my usual 10, again for Confluence and the car trouble). I needed $50 of that savings to balance a payment due to be taken out tomorrow. But I think I’m on track again. And ZohoDocs tells me that they are working very hard on their mobile apps so that this does not happen again.

I have been very lucky. I have had things to do, friends to do them with, and the help I needed when things broke down. I now have to spend the next 18-24 months getting on top of things so that I won’t need to ask for help when the next crisis occurs.

Hugs,
Me

Ah, the Weekend

This was a pretty good week. Two classes, not much going on, keeping in touch with family, got my business taken care of and bills paid. Not much left, but at least I got through. Don’t think I have anything this weekend, although I might use my blood donor voucher to see another Smokies game tomorrow.  I’ve been trying to write a song or songs, I’m getting pieces but no clarity yet. When it comes together, it’s when I get that piece I was missing to make it all happen.  I revisited the tune I wrote a week ago, and it doesn’t go with the chorus I wrote this week, so I’m at square two on both those songs.

Ah well. Take care of myself and my kitties. Who are driving me crazy. Oops, too late for that.

I got a new treatise from Bob Trubshaw at Heart of Albion Press, and immediately found a typo. Then a few pages later, another. By the time I’d found the third, I had Bob’s approval to go through and find everything I could find and report back to him. I miss doing this kind of work. Maybe Bob will put me to work again.

 

Hugs,

Me

Belt tightening

Well, I keep filling in the blanks (which should be ? not _) on my spreadsheet. Things are awfully tight. I have friends all over offering support, some of whom have even mailed me care packages. I have a list of not-expensive things for which there is just no room… unless I stop doing something I have committed myself to do, and even that would only free up $150 per month.

The good news is, there are things which go away if I keep paying on them. $85 of the $150 would go away after 14 months. (I really can’t wait that long, and have asked the person I’m helping to find another source of help, either take the payment over or find another item.)  The rest of it I’m only committed to through December. Another $137 goes away next April. (By “goes away”, I mean “I stop having to spend it”, by completing the commitment.) But that still makes for lean times until December. I have only $80 per month for food (not including $20 for pet food). I may or may not have money (depending on the month) for my supplements.

On the good news side, someone gave me a Mr. Beer kit, and I’ve bottled my first of two batches, so I won’t be buying beer for a while (the batch is not ready for two weeks, and I won’t start the second batch until then unless I can get more bottles). I am also not that much of a drinker, so this really does not impact my budget, just keeps me from spending what is left over, if anything, on beer for a while. Better beer, better prices. Papa John’s. Oops, strike that…

My website transfer is complete, and I can now be found online at http://peacefulhippo.info. NOTE: I WILL BE MOVING THIS BLOG TO THE WEBSITE, probably pretty soon, so watch for it.

Hugs,
Me