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Adding up pennies and dollars

July 8th, 2009 at 08:14 pm

I have been getting a little frustrated as of late. I participate in a 401K plan, I do automatic savings, I try not to go overboard in my spending. The only areas where I seem to have any control over are flexible spending like grocery, miscellaneous purchases, lunch money etc.

And guess what? I feel like it's not making much of a difference. I know every little bit adds up, but perhaps I need to think big? Think about additional income? Do freelancing? If so, how? when? what?

These are the things that are bothering me. I guess what is also bothering me is that I need to pay 2K in credit card this month. I have not been carrying this balance so I will not be paying any interest if I pay it off this month, which I plan to. I had to buy a few plane tics and I also went a little crazy with buying after-graduation-treats for myself. But I plan to replenish this amount somehow. Selling my cds and books won't make much of a dent, so I will have to think of something else. Any ideas?

In other notes, I ran 3 miles yesterday and made myself a delicious veggie and tofu sautee (3 servings).
Running makes me want to eat healthy so as not to undo all that exercise, which also helps my pocket. So maybe I will meet the goal of loosing 5 pounds in July after all. Keep your fingers crossed for me. I think the most amount of weight I could loose is about 8 pounds. I plan to achieve that and maintain it.

Okay that's about it for today. I am off to bed. Good night!

Weekend Updates

July 6th, 2009 at 07:49 am

The weekend did not start out nice. First of all, it rained all day long in my city. I was supposed to leave that night to go see BF, but my flight was delayed by 6 hours which would have meant that I fly out after mid night. So we decided that I would go home instead and take the morning flight out. So I went home, and had to buy myself dinner and breakfast the next morning since I had nothing at home.

I had a good night's sleep and left the next morning, and had myself a very good weekend. But now that I am back, I need to focus on keeping within budget and enhancing my personal finance. We have certain plans for the future and it's very crucial to stay the course for us to achieve them.

Speaking of personal finance, I picked up money magazine at the airport. I read a few articles that suggests that I need to revisit my 401K allocations. There are certain things that I am not clear about, perhaps I will write about it here and someone can clear it up for me.

PS: I still managed to run 30 mins on the weekend each day while travelling!


Ideas for extra income: can clutter be my friend ?

June 25th, 2009 at 08:19 am

I have a considerable amount of cds that I could get rid of once I convert all the music I want to keep into mp3s, and hard bound text books and paperbacks that I can do without. So I am leaning towards selling them. Would it be illegal to burn mp3s and then sell the cds? Will I get into trouble with the music police?

Also, have you guys any experience with the craigslist or amazon selling your 2nd hand stuff?

I also have some household items that are only taking up space. Hopefully getting rid of clutter will turn into some extra income. Who knew de-cluttering could be potentially inspiring?

How to PFB (personal finance blog) effectively?

June 24th, 2009 at 10:35 am

Writing a PF blog is hard! I can't always think of PF related topics to write about. I am afraid this is turning out to be a diary instead of a blog. Hopefully I can throw in some financial stuff here and there. I created this blog so that I can be accountable for myself financially and otherwise. So perhaps writing my daily musings will indeed help me keep myself in check?

Oh, I know what!! Here's something PF related that you guys will not be too happy about:
I haven't checked my 401K in a long while. Partly because I was scared, partly because I was finishing up my graduate school and got too busy. Also because I forgot my password and haven't bothered to do anything about it. Bad, bad, bad girl. I need to take care of this ASAP. Don't yell at me.

Yesterday I ran almost 3 miles, after which I had a dinner of organic pasta with fresh courgette, grape tomatoes, sweet peas and sauted shrimp. It took 10 minutes to make, and it was delicous. I like to buy these pre cooked frozen shrimp from TJ's, and mix it in with many of my dishes. I don't eat a lot of meat, but this is something I enjoy from time to time. Also, it's frozen, so I only take out what I need.

So for lunch today, it was pasta salad with above vegetables and tofu added in instead of the shrimp. I also sprinkled some Herbes De Provence on top. I like the flavor it gives. Yum! I also had a banana and an apple this morning. I like to buy mostly organic veggies and fruits, but it gets pricey. So I usually follow "what is worth spending $$ on and buying organic and what is not" rule. Apparently fruits and veggies with shells/peels/cover/extra layer on top that you discard (oh, it's called the skin!) is not worth buying Organic since they absorb less pesticides. Some exceptions are crucifers like broccoli and cauliflowers - which for some reason do not absorb much pesticides either.

Today I have a lot to do on my list, so I won't be running even though I would like to. Actually it's not that I would like to, it's that I have gotten into the habit of running so it feels awkward if I don't.

To do:

[ X ] Remember 401K password and see how it's doing (DONE! How easy was it once I made myself accountable for it? I had been putting it off for months! MONTHS!!)
[ X ] Organize paper works
[ X ] Laundry
[ X ] Return the under bed storage thingo I bought for winter clothes (It's not air tight)
[ X ] Plan lunch/snacks/before run snacks/after run dinner for tomorrow

Hello World!

June 22nd, 2009 at 05:46 pm

Hello everybody. Today's my first day here. I started this blog to challenge myself to save as much as I can in 6 months. Once that 6 month time period is over, I will reevaluate my situation and set up another set of goal(s) for the next 6.

Hello I am Six, and I am very happy to meet you all.