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Lots of Stuff

January 20th, 2023 at 07:38 am

I'm and doing okay on the eat from the pantry challenge.  In 19 days we have only spent $27.32 on fresh produce and a half gallon of milk, which are within the parameters of my challenge.  Also within the parameters of my challenge are that if I find a really good sale on something, I can buy it, but I can't use it during the challenge.  That's okay, because I don't want to.  Most of it is for canning, the rest to be eaten during the next 3 months or so.

Some really good sales have come up.   One involes 25 pounds of carrots that works out to .67/lb and the other is 20 lbs of tomatoes that works out to .88/lb.  I still need to can carrots and I'd like to make some more tomato sauce to can.  Now that I am feeling better I want to get on with it.  I may go back a couple of times if I feel like I can get through it.  The sale ends on Sunday and then a new one will go up on Monday.  This is at the restaurant supply store.  It is cash only.

Plus there is a really good sale on chicken thighs and I want to stock up.  Chicken is the major thing I am lacking in my freezer and so far it isn't being rationed.  I am down to 3 packages of bone in skin on, and one package of boneless skinless.  We like to eat chicken twice a week.  I want to stock up while it is on sale and before they start putting rations on it, too.

They've already put rations on eggs, milk, distilled water when they even have it, certain cuts of beef, some fresh fruit, like last week they had bags of oranges, but you could only get one and they didn't have any loose oranges, and some of the, canned goods most notably corn, peas, mixed corn and peas, beans, and several types of chili.  Dry beans was one but they had 2 pound bags instead of 1.  Rice was not rationed.  Some things they don't have at all.  Others they only have frozen. Makes me glad we are expanding the garden this spring.

Friday is payday and I think I will go in on Friday and get 8 packages and then send DH in on Saturday to get 8 packages and we'll break them down into vacuum sealed bags of 8 pieces and see how much room we have left.  8 packages is how much I can take before I start getting side-eyed and commented on, even though there is usually a ton of chicken left with these sales.  Since the store is close, it's not a big deal to go there a few times.

Honestly, I want to go back until there isn't room in the upright freezer, but I want to make sure there is plenty for other people, too.  I want to do a third run, but I don't know.  If I decide to, I should take a bag of spot prawns out to thaw.  We have two big plastic bags full of ziploc bags of spot prawns taking up a lot of space.  That should give us a lot of room for chicken.  I don't want to start filling up the chest freezer, because we need to be making space there for when we get our next steer.  Maybe I'll pop in on Tuesday, the last day of the sale and get some.  Then others will have had the whole week to get chicken and I won't feel like a hog.  Still, I have to shop economically to feed my family with food prices going up so high.  There is nice and then there is foolish.

I mentioned above that distilled water was one of things being rationed here, assuming you could even find it.  We are lucky to have a few gallons of it at the moment and we are keeping an eye out for more.  We use it for our c-pap humidifiers and I use it for nasal rinses, so it is kind of a necessity for us.  So I am going to work into the budget for late February or early March, a distilling machine so we can make our own distilled water.  It takes about 4 hours to do a gallon of water.  So we can easily refill our gallon jugs and not have to worry about these shortages.  It'll cost around $150, so it'll take 150 uses to pay for itself, and we go through a jug every week if I have a cold, otherwise it'll last 2 weeks.  So it could take a while to pay for itself, but we will never have to worry about it for the life of the machine.

I have decided to just get a cheap frying pan for now and save up for a more expensive set later on.  At least the one I am getting is supposed to be rated to 500 degrees and our induction burner doesn't go any higher than that, so hopefully DH can't kill it.  He usually cooks stuff at 375 or 400, but the pans he ruined were only rated for 350.  I am getting the Blue Diamond one, which is under $30.

In other news, I have now lost 15 pounds.  I haven't exactly been on my diet, either.  I don't eat as much since having Covid, though.  I think my stomach shrank during that time.  I think just eating food at home for 19 days, eating from scratch mostly, trying to cut way back on my sugar and wheat, eating more vegetables and protein, and always taking a lactase enzyme when I eat dairy, even butter, has made a difference.  The enzyme is new in the last three weeks and has made a big difference in how I feel.  I no longer wake up nauseous in the morning if I had cheese at night trying to calm down an acid stomach because it always has, but I didn't know it would make my stomach hurt the next day, too.  I haven't had an acid stomach in weeks, though.

I haven't had much dairy, in a long time anyway.  I don't drink milk, I've been using gluten free flour and chicken broth instead of milk to make gravy for a long while, and I've had very little cheese, just a sprinkle on salads once a week, but I used to snack on it like crazy.  I will have cheese if I make pizza, but that's maybe once a month and mozzarella isn't so bad as others, the process takes out most of the lactose.  So most of the time butter is the only dairy I eat these days and I feel a lot better for it.  Or I eat goat or sheep's cheese because they don't have lactose.  Goat butter is good, but too expensive to be a real option.  I may try ghee since it takes out the milk solids.  They sell that by the tub at Costco.

I am still eating fruit, but I have really cut back on how much, just one serving a day and not even every day, because I know that fructose can be just as bad as sugar to someone who is borderline diabetic.  I am trying to stick to things with a lot of fiber though, like apples, oranges, and berries.  The first two are at least seasonal.  Blueberries are on sale a lot right now.  I know they are coming from Chile, but they are one of the better choices.  The apples are coming from cold storage in my state and the oranges are from California.

I am meeting with my doctor on the 26th to talk about the diabetes stuff some more and have a weight check.  I am just glad that my scale at home and the scale there are in sync with each other, so there will be no surprises if I weigh myself at home in the same clothes I will wear to the doctor's office.  We will also talk about a couple of my meds while I am there and maybe going on metformin as well.  I hate to add another medication as I am on so many already, but if it will help it may be inevitable.  What I don't want is to have to start checking my blood sugar.  I need to call about whether I need to get a new glucose test before my visit.  If I do, I really hope it has improved with all the changes.

My back has started feeling better with all the changes, which is really nice because I haven't been to the chiropractor in several weeks, not since my chiropractor had to have a triple bypass.  It'll probably be sometime in March before he can come back to work and it'll probably be just one day a week to start.  He's doing well, though.  We worry about him.  I've known him for 32 years, my husband for 35, and my kids their whole lives.  They call him Uncle Dr. ______.  He lives so healthy, but it is the family history.  He had problems about ten years ago, too.  Scared us to death back then, too.  At least they caught it in time, though.  His wife takes good care of him.  She's five years younger and in very good health.  She looks 15 years younger than she is.

I took DD to the gastro doctor today.  It was time for her yearly check.  They are going to send her for an ultrasound because she is having pain in the same place where they removed the tumor.  I'm not sure why they are doing an ultrasound instead of an MRI like they were doing before, but whatever. The fear is the tumor has grown back on her liver and is bleeding.  The tumor isn't supposed to hurt unless it starts bleeding.  She hasn't had an MRI since her surgery and I always thought it was the plan to do one a year after her surgery, but that didn't happen because of the issues back with Covid and hospitals, and she wasn't in pain so they pushed it.  Then she kept getting sick.  After that, I guess it got forgotten in the shuffle and the order expired and then they wanted to see her again before they did anything and now they just want to do an ultrasound, so I don't know.  It was an exhausting appointment.  It lasted over an hour.

But their new building is very pretty.  Their handicapped parking leaves a lot to be desired.  I don't think it should be compact parking slots when most handicapped people using van accessible slots have, you know, vans, which are not compact.  So the person using a walker or wheelchair on the passenger side can get out, but the driver can't, or vice versa if you have to park the other way because that's the only slot there is, unless you park halfway into the hatched lines, which if you do that, you may be preventing the person on the other side from getting into their vehicle if they have a walker or a wheelchair.  Not thought through well.

Also the handicapped push button for the doors in and out of the building is quite a ways away from the door opening, which if you are hobbling on a cane or walker is not the wisest thing.  Fortunately the doors stay open for a good 30 seconds, but making people walk those extra steps when they may not be able to, is not the best set up.  There were closer places they could have been placed.  But no one ever asks handicapped people about the designs of these things.  That was not an issue today, though, as both of us were walking pretty well.  When most of your clientele is elderly, though, you'd think you would think about that a little more.  Oh, well.  The world is made for the able bodied.  We are used to being an afterthought.

Well, this rambled off being about financial topics a while ago.  Let's bring it back.  I got my cash back for my Costco Executive membership.  It doesn't pay us back for the whole membership fee, we just don't shop there enough for that, but it is still worth getting to go in there an hour before other shoppers.  The store is pretty empty and checking out is faster.  It was $59.03, so we'll use that on our next Costco purchase.  We won't get our cash back on the credit card until March, when our membership renews, since that is tied together.  You'd think it would be tied to when I first got the credit card, but no.

Payday is tomorrow.  The budget is done, I just need to figure out how much I need to withdraw from the credit union tomorrow and then go to sleep.  I will try to get up a payday report tomorrow but last time it took me a few days, so no promises.

Real time: 11:19 p.m. Real Date: 1/19/2023

Selling Garlic and Salmon Fishing

September 22nd, 2022 at 10:16 pm

Yesterday was officially six weeks on the garlic drying so today I get to go out to the garage and sort through them.  I will pick the best looking bulbs of the bunch to save for planting towards the end of October or the start of November.  It will be great not to have to pay for bulbs this year.  I have already picked out 4 bulbs of the Elephant garlic, it is just the Music I have to sort through.  I figured it out, though, based on current costs in seed catalogues or their websites.

1 bulb of elephant garlic goes for $13 for conventionally grown and $18 for organically grown.  Yes, just one bulb.  I about fell over.  The bulb I bought last year was from the grocery store and was $3.99.  I am assuming it was conventionally grown.  I bulb of elephant garlic only has 7 cloves, no more, no less, so you can never grow more than that.  So this year I will be growing 28 elephant garlic plants for free and next year I will double that to have 48 and the next year I can consider them organically grown, since I will have grown them using organic methods.

I won't go above 48 the following year for my family, though.  There is only so much elephant garlic one can use  I will grow and sell some for seed to other people for far less than what is in the catalogue.  Maybe $6 or $7 per bulb which is more than reasonable for organic.  I'll check the catalog price the year I would sell them.  I would have space to grow 96 plants so could sell half of them.

Worst case scenario, I dehydrate them and grind them when I need garlic power or rehydrate them night before if I need them in a recipe the next night.  After taking out my 48 and the additional 14 I'd hold back for seed for the next planting, that would give me 34 bulbs to sell to others.  The following year I would know if I saved to many for myself and could adjust accordingly.  And I'd know the demand.

I do, eventually, have plans to sell organic Music bulbs of garlic as well.  That's something that sells out so quickly that it is almost impossible to get.  I barely got the conventionally grown ones last year.  They are going for $9 for one bulb this year.  Last year I paid $50 for 21 bulbs.  When I went back the next day to see if they had shallots, the Music was marked as sold out.  So were the shallots, but I will get some this year.

So once I build up past how much I want to have only for us to eat, which would be about 30 bulbs for cooking and dehydrating (we use a lot of garlic so between that and the music we should be fine), any extra could be sold as seed bulbs.  People on my farming list are asking all the time if anyone knows where they can buy Music.  I could eventually do a small bag of Music bulbs, maybe 5, for $15. 

Garlic involves some labor at the begining in the planting.  During the growing season, you pull the occasional weed, and you turn on the soaker hose consistently.  It's pretty care free as it has no predators.  I keep a cage on it anyway so the deer don't bed down in it.  Then at the end you dig it out and put it in drying racks for 3 weeks, trim the stems down, dry for 3 more weeks, and then box up and put in a cool, dark place to store.  I spend maybe 2 hours total, so selling 6 bags of garlic would be more than enough to pay me back for my time, plus I get a lot of garlic out of it, too, for my family.

It's time to turn the onions over, too.  They need to be trimmed down the rest of the way and dried out for 3 more weeks.  And it is time to start digging up the potatoes.  Most of the plants are completely dead.  The rest can go another week.

DH is going salmon fishing.  Apparently they can only get 2 each, which sucks.  In Alaska they get to bring home 6 fish each on each type of salmon and some they can bring home 25 to 30 per household.  Then B.C. gets a ton.  No wonder there's no fish by the time it reaches Washington.  I'm okay with the tribes getting their share, they deserve that above anyone else, it's all the other folks getting tons and tons with crazy high limits that bugs me, while we have dinky ones.

It used to be worth the gas money to go out when gas was cheap, but it isn't really anymore, especially with only 3 of them going out to split the cost.  And that's assuming they catch any fish.  Otherwise, I'd just as soon go to the grocery store and buy 2 whole wild caught coho salmon.  It'd cost less, unless they come home with monsters.  I'd be tempted to get a fishing license and go out so we could get two more fish, but again, we could just buy a fish with the cost of the license.  This is probably the last trip of the season, too.

Mom wants to do a dump run on Sunday.  Well, she wanted to do it on Saturday, but fishing.  She's probably going to pout about it for the rest of the week that it isn't on the day she wanted, and then forget what day of the week it actually is, think it is Sunday on Saturday (happens a lot on the weekend), stomp around and have a martyr complex that slips into an "Oh, woe is me," thing, until someone reminds her it isn't Sunday and she'll snap out of it like she wasn't behaving that way at all and not apologize to anyone for acting that way.  Gotta love dementia.  Monday through Thursday are generally pretty good, though.

I picked another 2 pounds of tomatoes yesterday.  It was mostly the little yellow pear ones.  I need to wash, destem, quarter, and roast tomatoes, so I can make roasted tomato ketchup.  I saw a lady make it on youtube and it looks so good.  I might have enough yellow tomatoes to make one jar of just yellow ketchup.  That would be interesting.  I love making roasted tomato spaghetti sauce, so I can't imagine this wouldn't be good, too.

I got my first purple green beans yesterday.  They grow purple, but turn green when cooked.  It's about 2 quarts.  It's not enough to run the canner, but considering the way this summer went, I am grateful to have gotten any.  The canner instructions say to run it with 4 jars, and I don't want to do pints of green beans, because we eat a cup each at dinner.  But if I hold off for 2 days, there might be enough ready to do 4 quarts.  There were some that were almost ready and there were some that could be ready since I gave them a good soaking and we are back to weather in the mid-seventies again.  Or I could just run them with pints of carrots, since carrot pints and green bean quarts run for the same amount of time and I am almost out of carrot pints.  Then I could do a full canner load and I can do that again when I have more green beans.  Two birds, one stone and food on the shelf.  Perfect.

I would have canned it with the ketchup, but that is waterbath canning and the other is pressure canning and they take different times.  Food safety first and foremost.  I really hope the ketchup turns out well.  I'd hate to waste all those tomatoes.


Interest, Emergency Fund, Retirement, and Net Worth Updates

April 2nd, 2022 at 09:35 pm

We recieved our dividend check from Louisianna Pacific for .70 last week (I think) and the interest income from C1-360 was $4.81.  I also had $15.50 in rolled coins.  I haven't checked the other two accounts but they are generally pennies.  I'll do that later.  Anyway, altogether that made the deposit to the Emergency Fund $21.01. We've already hit six month's expenses, so now I am working on hitting one year's expenses, but slowly.  I've other things to save for.

$20,264.50 Starting Balance

+__,_21.01 Deposit


$20,285.51 New Balance

They haven't dropped this paycheck's contribution into the retirement account yet, but last payday's finally showed up.  With all the OT DH's contribution was around $1450, but it has gone up by $2639.45 since last I updated, so finally starting to make some gains.  The 401K is only down by 5.08% for the year, instead of 11%, so that's something.  Not sure on the IRA, but it hasn't moved much if at all in the past two weeks.  It's still down by around $700 from it's high.  So the new retirement total is $75,104.61.

That means NW is up by a total of $2660.46 between the EF and Retirement.  The new net worth is $133,303.40.  It's nice to see some real progress again.

I'm not going to add it in to Net Worth, but just for fun I checked to see the value of our vehicles again.  I had checked at the start of January to see if it changed our net worth and it was steady.  Well, when I checked it yesterday, the value of our van (54,000 miles) has gone up $2000 and our truck has gone up $500 (288,000 miles).  Toyotas are of greater value due to even higher demand than at the start of the year.  At least in my area.  I wouldn't have even looked, but we were checking prices on used Camry's for when my son has enough money saved, just to know a ballpark to save for, so since I was on there anyway I took a look and was quite pleased. 

Got Paid

March 25th, 2022 at 03:22 am

I got my AdSense payment today, $104.20.  I haven't even made a youtube video since May, I think, but I have two old vidoes that always chug along at the top of my views.  I haven't decided what I am going to do with it yet.  I've kind of lost my mojo at youtube, but maybe that will come back when it is time to start planting in the garden again.  I've thought about using it to upgrade my video editing software, but I don't want to waste it if I don't resume making videos.  I probably will, though.  I just need to get on the right dosage of anti-depressants and I will start caring about things again.

Oh, and Amber, if you are reading this, congratulations on all you have accomplished.  I don't want to deal with the pain in the butt captcha today to leave a comment.


Interest Income

March 2nd, 2022 at 01:22 am

Now, after that long-winded post, this one shall be short and sweet.  My saving accounts earned $4.32 in interest, so I will add that to the EF, bringing the Emergency Fund to $20,216.53 and Net Worth to $129,889.79.  I decided to dump the interest into the EF because it is easier than anything else, and I do want it to eventually grow to a year's expenses, which I will be rounding to $40,500.  Long, long, long term goal is a year's income.  But that is not the priority right now.

November Interest to Emergency Fund

December 5th, 2021 at 12:17 am

$18,977.92 Beginning Balance

+_____4.30 Interest Income


$18,982.22 New Balance

That brings net worth to $125,691.86.  But not really because retirement is in freefall right now due to all the bad news coming out of this administration the past couple of weeks with the economy and the new Covid variant and possible lockdowns again, but I'm not going to deal with updating that until year's end because it might still recover.  I hope next year is better and they can get the economy back on track.  I am no fan of Biden, never have been, but I never want a president to fail because it means the country fails.  And it wrecks the stock market.  I think we've lost about $2000 in the last four weeks and that is with putting in just over $1500 in that time period.

I have to recalculate at year's end anyway, because I'm not sure what the vehicle values will be at that point.  The truck has been holding steady for the last couple of years.  The van seems to be going up in value, which is weird, but maybe it is because used Siennas with very low mileage are of such value right now.

Preliminary Budget for the $10,000

October 2nd, 2021 at 02:36 am

I'm not sure when we will be getting the $10K from MIL, but it will be before the end of the year and this is what I've come up on.

$3000 Medical/Braces

$3000 Emergency Fund

$2000 Adjustable King Size Bed Frame

$_200 DD

$_200 DS

$_600 Vacation Fund

$1000 Household Replacement Items

As for items that need to be replaced in the household, DH and I both need new desk chairs and possibly DS does, too.  DD just had hers replaced not that long ago and it is still in really good condition.  Then the other thing I'd like to replace is our kitchen sink faucet.  I want a taller faucet that rises much further above the sink, maybe even with the pull down sprayer.  If there is any money left after that I'd like to also get a new shower head/sprayer.  I'd like something with more flexible tubing on the sprayer.  But that can come out of regular household money if necessary.

Interest Income to EF

July 3rd, 2021 at 10:47 pm

$16,455.44 Starting Balance

+_____4.43 Interest Added


$16,459.87 New Balance

That pops net worth up to $112,480.56.

Emergency Fund Update

March 20th, 2021 at 05:43 am

$13,325.73 Beginning Balance

+__,_37.49 Allstate Safe Driver's Refund

+__,___.51 Lousianna Pacific Stock Divident Payment


$13,363.73 New Balance

Working in the Garden

March 18th, 2021 at 02:56 am

My husband, son, and I spent a few hours working in the garden before the son went down.  My son was weeding the strip beside the house where we will be planting the blackberry bushes.  He got a 4 x 2 foot area and a 4 x 3 foot area weeded.  These are the nasty weeds that are really hard to get out because they have runners.

My husband got the garden bed empty that was so heavily invested with morning glory.  The root structure in there was unbelievable.  The three sides to the bed still need to be taken down, but he was beat after that, so that is a project for the next nice day we have.  It's supposed to rain tomorrow but be overcast only on Friday.  And then rain for the forseeable future.

I was working on digging up and dividing strawberries.  It took me about 3 hours, but we have quite a tidy amount to sell and I've expanded the ones we are keeping to fill a 12 by 4 foot garden bed with four rows.  I filled 4 garbage cans that I grew tomatoes in last year and then 3 more containers.  There will be lots of strawberries this year for fresh eating, jam, and freezing.  I should be able to sell 4 dozen plants at a dollar a plant.

I'll be able to divide both my peppermint, lemon balm, thyme and spearmint this year.  And I've got some more fennel volunteers that can be sold.  And I can divide my bee balm and plant it in a couple of locations.  We will also be selling raspberry plants because we have way too many plants based on how many people actually eat raspberries.  We will keep a few of the thornless ones and plant them in a different area away from the fence, so we can see if the morning glory starts creeping over from the neighbor's yard again and do something about it before it gets into ours.

I got a check in the mail today from Allstate for the safe driver's refund.  It's for $37.49.  I will deposit it on Friday (payday) and send it to the EF.  I am starting to think maybe we will hit the original goal for the EF for this year after all.  Wouldn't that be something?


Big Emergency Fund Update

March 17th, 2021 at 10:22 pm

In the first time in forever I have a large deposit to make to the EF.  This is a portion of the stimulus we recieved.

$11,325.73 Beginning Balance

+_2,000.00 Amount Added


$13,325.73 New Balance

Money Money Money (and Medical)

March 13th, 2021 at 01:46 am

Our income tax refund of $809 was deposited into our account on Wednesday and I just checked and our stimulus payment is pending for next Wednesday.  We got the full amount for us and our dependents of $5600.  That's $6409 to work with.  This is what I am planning.

$641.00 10% donation to the local Christian Homeless Shelter

1350.00 Handicapped Ramp Fund

1000.00 Vacation Fund

_500.00 Meat Fund

_500.00 Miscellaneous Fun

2000.00 Emergency Fund


$5991.00 Total

That will leave us with $418.00.  I am not sure DH will get all of his hours in this week.  They are having a cyber security issue that isn't allowing anyone to work online.  He is doing what he can and saving it to his hard drive, but there is a lot of sending around of drawings for checks that can't happen if you can't send them around or can't even send them in to the office to be printed out because of this.  So I will be holding on to that money in case the paycheck is short.

This will finish off the Handicapped Ramp Fund so we will be able to order one for the front door.  Our share is $1750.  This one is twice as much as almost triple the amount of the back door because it will go down the frong of the house from the steps, then there will be a platform for a turnaround and it will go all the way back the length of the first ramp to the ground and end in front of the steps.  It's a lot of money, but these ramps don't have to be maintained like wood ramps do.  It mostly just needs to be swept periodically and pressure washed a couple times a year since it is aluminum.  Wooden ones will rot out on the pilings after five to ten years, so those would have to be replaced frequently) and would require staining or repainting every few years.

It will nice to have a good bump in the Emergency Fund and to pay for a little vacation for DH and me to get away to the cottage by the sea we've gone to twice now.  He will be taking several days off in April.  Part of them will be spent getting the garden up and going and then we will go away for a few days.

MIL is talking about taking us on a family vacation by the water as well.  It probably wouldn't be until September or October, after the summer is done, but still nice enough out to cook on the BBQ and walk on the beach.  And soak in the outdoor hot tub.

DD wants a web cam.  She is the only one who doesn't have one, so we are going to pick her up a cheap one.  She starts online therapy next week, so this way she can do it in her own room instead of mine and with my laptop.  Her brother was just diagnosed with ADHD and we think she has it, too.  But it is a process.  First counseling, then a psychologist, and then the psychiatrist who can prescribe meds.

I also think I might have it.  Girls and women present differently than boys and men do, but as I was filling out all the forms during DS's drug trial I felt like I had a lot of the same issues.  Each week we had to fill out a sheet based on symptoms during a four week trial of adderall.  Except it was a blind study so two weeks were placebo, one week was 5 mg and one week was 10 mg.  He had to fill out his own forms based on his opinion and I had to do one based on mine.  Every time I filled it out, I was thinking I really have a lot of this stuff, too.  I always thought it was the fibro fog and the last brain injury, but now I have to wonder.

So once we DD gets through all this, I am going to talk to my doctor about it.  I've been thinking I might be needing anti-depressants again for a while.  I haven't needed them for about 15 years and never needed them for more than a year at time, but I kind of feel maybe I do.  Or maybe it is just fibro.  But I'd like to see about it, you know?  Because it is not normal to want to stay in bed and sleep all the time, even with fibromyalgia and rheumatoid arthritis.





Interest Income to EF

February 3rd, 2021 at 10:35 pm

$11,551.02 Previous Balance

+__,__2.49 Interest Added


$11,553.51 New Balance

Misplacing and Finding

January 20th, 2021 at 02:42 am

I didn't get my debit card back in my wallet last week when I made my second seed order.  I noticed it was missing last night when I went to place my third seed order.  It scared me quite a bit at first and then I realized there was no way I had taken it out of the house.  I completely dumped out my purse and went through everything.  It was not there, although I did have $1.37 in change at the bottom that I put in the coin jar.

So I ended up organizing my desk, mostly.  It had gotten ridiculous with papers that needed to be filed, shredded, or recycled.  It's still a little cluttered, but ten times better.  I did not find my debit card on my desk, but I did find a $5 bill and then about a half an hour later a $50 bill.  The $5 was just loose, but the $50 was in an envelope system that was battered and I had replaced, but not thrown out.  It was in the restaurant envelope, if anyone was curious.

I am glad I decided last minute to check all the envelopes.  I was thrilled.  I took that $55 and added it to the Beef Envelope, so there is now $120 in there.  I can't believe I almost threw that $50 away.  If it wasn't for that little voice that said check it, check it, check it, I would have.

Finally I cleaned out underneath my desk.  It wasn't bad, just a few papers that had slipped between the wall and my desk and ended up on the floor.  It was not there, either.  So then I picked up my foot board.  All of my height is in my back so in order to be comfortable in a computer chair, DH made me a two foot long by one foot wide foot board at the right height for me to be comfortable.  And that is where it was.  It had slipped down the back of the desk and wiggled its way under there.

I was so relieved to have found it.  Tomorrow I will work on my desk some more, but tonight I need to shred papers.  I don't want to build up again like I did and have to do a massive shred fest like I did a couple years ago.  I've been generally good at staying on top of that, but when you pull muscles in your back, you don't worry about your paper pile getting larger.  You do the bare minimum until you can function again.  Which is about where I am now.

I am feeling the bug to organize, to clean, and to work out in the garden.  We have had lovely sunny days without ran in the middle 40's.  It would be perfect weather to go out and pull the corn stalks and the dead bean vines and get the posts dug out.  We are totally revamping the garden and everything has to be cleared away so we can build the new beds.  I don't want the growing season to get away from me.  I think it would be good to get outside and move my body and it would be good for DS, as well.  He's feeling quite the large amount of cabin fever right now.  Being outside does help mitigate that.

Stimulus is Pending, Retirement is at 15%

January 3rd, 2021 at 12:11 am

I checked my bank account this morning and to what should my wondering eyes appear, but a pending stimulus payment. DH and I got $1200 together.  I'm a little disappointed that they couldn't get their act together and do the $2000, but free money is free money.  That will go into the EF, minus the tithe, and that will put us at a little over three month's expenses.  I plan to continue to save for six month's expenses, which will take to the end of the year or thereabouts.  Eventually I'd like six month's income and not just six month's expenses, but once expenses are met, I'll probably cut the contribution in half so we can save for other things, but still push forward.

We also made sure our retirement account was set to15% for 2021.  DH had done it once but it didn't take.  So we did it again and this time got to an end screen he didn't get to the first time.  I will make sure I check it again before payroll hits.

I did the numbers and between what we will contribute and what work will contribute (2.5%) it'll be a little over $20K this year.  And that doesn't include company stock.  If DH works until 72 and we get the same average rate of return as has been going for the last 20 years with the funds we are in, we should have 5.5 million.  If we max out it'll be a little higher.  If he can only work until 65, we still max out a little over 2 million.  That's assuming no raises that will allow us to max out our 401K.  Gives me hope that our disabled daughter will be well taken care of and that there will be an inheritance for my son, too.

And that's only if we don't put anything into the IRA.  If we can contriubte to it this year that would be amazing, even if it is only a little bit.  But I think if possible we would max out the 401K first, which would be an additional $2000 to what we are putting in.  That might be a big enough stretch on its own.

DH's work is considering doing something where if you work overtime, instead of getting paid overtime, the hours worked can bank for extra paid vacation time or can bank for a quarterly payout, or do half vacation time/half quarterly payout.  Since the project he is working on does not authorize overtime, this would be a way to actually work it, but get a different way of paying out.  Normally it is only offered to salaried employees, not hourly, but he is doing the work of a salaried employee.  I think they are putting it to a vote when everyone comes back from the holidays.

I am all for it.  I'd like extra paid vacation and an extra payout, so we would do 50/50 for the first quarter and see what that looks like.  And of course extra hours worked already means extra sick leave banked, since it is based on that at his work.  While straight OT is better than anything, that just won't be an option this year.  I guess we just have to wait and see how things play out.


Payday Report for 10/30/2020

October 30th, 2020 at 07:12 pm

I got my Google AdSense payment this week and that, along with it being a third paycheck month for DH, brought our income around $300 higher this pay period.  Citi is so high because DS owes me some money for an order he made, which he will pay me later, but I wanted to pay it off before the due date hit so no interest.  When he pays me back I will put that money into the Emergency Fund.  Another reason Citi was so high was we got a lot of takeout due to my being sick.  Nearly every day for 2 weeks.  Ouch.  But I believe in tracking honestly so there you go.


$352.44 Tithe

_400.00 Grocery Envelope

__75.00 Household Envelope

__71.99 DH Life Insurance

__60.46 Me Life Insurance

_100.00 Adult Spending Money

_120.00 Kid Spending Money

_100.00 Gas Money

2203.29 Citi


3483.18 Total Money Out

Interest to EF

July 1st, 2020 at 11:55 pm

$7846.98 Balance Forward
+___3.81 Interest Income
$7850.89 New Balance

Time to Start Rebuilding the Medical Fund for 2021

June 15th, 2020 at 01:50 am

I just went through yesterday's mail (I quarantine mail for 24 hours) and received a refund check from one of my doctor's offices. Quite a hefty check, too, of $208.44. I will take that to the bank tomorrow and deposit it into the medical fund. At first, I was thinking about just putting it into the EF since it would have put me above $9000, but since it originally came out of the medical fund, it should go back in there.

It's pretty low and it is time to start rebuilding it for next year since we finally hit the out of pocket max for our insurance. We do still use it to buy our OTC meds, too, so it definitely needs a deposit or two to keep up with that anyway. I put in $300 on payday, so this will be an even nicer cushion for that account.

MIL hasn't given us a check so far this year so I don't know if we can rely on that at all to help get it back up for next year's deductible and out of pocket max, but I am hopeful that she will. It might not be until Christmas, but the last couple years she has given us one in June and one in December. DH hasn't talked to her about it, so I don't know if it will happen and I can't rely on it. If it does it is a nice bonus. That's the only way I can think of it.

Even if she does give us a check, I might just dump it into the Emergency Fund anyway and just continue to add our own money into the medical fund. It would give us a big boost on getting to where we are going with the EF. It would be nice, but we can't expect it every year.

Interest to EF

May 1st, 2020 at 11:07 pm

$7806.29 Balance Forward
+___1.88 Interest Added
$7808.17 New Balance

Google AdSense Payment to Emergency Fund

April 23rd, 2020 at 03:13 am

My Google/AdSense payment was deposited into my account yesterday. I wasn't actually expecting one until next month, but I must have done better on YouTube during March than I thought I had. I know my two virals were getting hit a lot because there were tons of new comments. Wasn't expecting such old videos to get so much interest. They are the ones on making homemade sausage seasoning and making and canning homemade mustard. I have a very small channel, but I still manage to make about $500 a year with it and that's with putting very little effort into it.

$7806.29 Balance Forward
+_123.92 Deposit Added
$7930.21 New Balance

$2069.79 to go to hit my next mini-goal.

Stimulus Allocation and Goals and DH's Job

April 16th, 2020 at 03:16 am

I moved our stimulus payment to the Emergency Fund and also one of the accounts finally posted interest so I am adding that as well.

$4405.64 Balance Forward
+2400.65 Amount Added
$6806.29 New Balance

I am now over the one month of income mark in the EF by $257.05. To reach my mid-term goal of two month's income, I need to save an additional $6292.19. My short term goal is $7500 and I have to save $693.71 to reach that. The next short term goal will be $10K.

Of course, those are all goals, which we can only maintain if DH continues to work. So far he seems pretty safe, but that doesn't mean it will remain so. We are saving as much as we can starting with Friday's paycheck. If DH ends up getting furloughed at some point his employer will continue to pay their portion of medical for two months. But he is pretty vital to keep the company going, so as long as the company doesn't fail I think we will be okay. It really depends on how long this quarantine business lasts.

DH only had to work one week at 32 hours. They are allowing 40 hours this week. So this paycheck will have the hit on it, but that is okay. I've planned for that loss of income.

Interest to EF

April 3rd, 2020 at 08:27 am

$4405.64 Balance Forward
+___2.32 Interest Added
$4407.96 New Balance

Interest to EF

March 6th, 2020 at 03:25 am

$4364.77 Balance Forward
+___2.87 February Interest Added
$4367.64 New Balance

Purchases, Money Coming, and Garden Planning

January 21st, 2020 at 06:58 am

I made two ebay purchases today totaling $102.43. Quite a bit is shipping, but with ceramic and glass that's a given. They have to wrap it thickly and individually. I have a discontinued dinnerware pattern that I have been slowly adding to as I find semi-reasonable prices. They are never going to be completely reasonable since you can't get it anywhere but the used market, but these ones were much better prices than I've been seeing. I have been watching for about two to three years.

So I got the salt and pepper set (light wear on the bottoms) and 8 16 oz tumblers that had never been used. I have been searching for the glasses a lot longer than the salt and pepper set. I used to have four but they all got broken over the years. I would like to get 4 more after these come if I can find a decent price. They have more, but not with reasonable prices. The glasses will only be for special occasions, not for every day use. This comes out of the household budget.

I got my Costco membership 2% back certificate today. It is for $89.69. I also got an email today saying my Costco credit card rewards check was coming as well, which will be $415.54. That's a total of $505.23. The Aerogarden Farm Plus XL

Text is and Link is costs $499.95 so that will be enough to cover it without dipping into my upcoming birthday money. Since I am downsizing my outdoor garden due to my autoimmune diseases making it hard for me to do things, I will be growing lettuce and herbs and a couple cherry tomato plants inside this year. Maybe a cucumber as well or a jalapeño plant.

The outdoor garden will be down to 3 raised beds and have strawberries, green onions, my big rosemary plant, zucchini, radishes, and peppers. Maybe kohlrabi. We may grow green beans in the ground, but I am just not sure. I will still have my bee balm, yarrow, echinacea and calendula in the trash barrels. Then they are contained but still have plenty of root room. They are all spreaders so if not contained will take over. But they are my favorite for making a mixed herbal tea.

I still want to grow what I can however I can despite my limitations. Fresh veggies are so important and this way I can have them year round, too. I have had a good experience with the smaller system and the fertilizer is organic. And I can grow all the lettuce I need without worrying about recalls and food poisoning, plus have a bigger variety than what is available in the supermarket. One day all I may be able to do is grow inside from a wheelchair, but hopefully that is a long, long way off.