Update: Extra Money Goals
October 25, 2008, 11:53 am
Filed under: Money Basics

In a previous post, I mentioned some goals I have for all the extra money that I’m making now. I thought now would be a good time to update you all on my progress:

-Increase the amount of money I put into savings every month.
I haven’t changed the amount yet since I’m waiting to see what things will look like once I get my second paycheck. I need to find a balance between personal savings, retirement savings, student loan repayment, car loan repayment, etc. I plan to change the amount within a few weeks.

-Contribute enough money to my 403(b) so that I get the full company match.
Done. I contribute $40 a pay period and my employer contributes $20. $20 is the maximum they’ll contribute. In a few years, I plan to bump up my contributions, but for now, I’m happy with the $60.

-Start a Roth IRA.
I’ve only done a bit of research for my Roth. I know I’ll probably need at least $1000 to start an account, so that will take at least a few months to get saved. Once I figure out the balance I mentioned above, I’ll set aside some money to start up my Roth. I need to research my options more as well.

-Pay my grandmother back monthly for the money she lent me to pay for my car.
I hope to send her the first of many consistent checks within a few weeks, once I figure out the balance I mentioned previously.

-Change my student loan payment plan so that all of my loans are on the “Level” plan (right now, 2 of my loans [the two beefiest] are on a graduated plan).
Again, this is waiting for me to figure out the balance. I have emailed Sallie Mae to ask them how much more it would be if I changed the plan and they said it would be about $60. Definitely doable.

-Pay for half of the grocery bill (Jake has been paying for the vast majority of our groceries since I’ve never had enough to pay for my share).
I have started to pay for groceries. I would like to set up an automatic deposit from both of our separate checking accounts into our joint checking account to be used for groceries so that it’s not a battle over who pays this time (we currently do this for our utility bills and when we go on vacation and it works great). I need to crunch some numbers and look at our pay schedules to figure out how much we should deposit and when.

-Slowly incorporate organic and eco-friendly products into our daily lives.
This is underway. A Whole Foods currently came to town and we’ve stopped in a few times to get produce, eggs, and cheese when we are in the area.

-Donate money to charities and organizations.
This is another one dependent on the balance. My employer is currently in the midst of a donation campaign and I plan to contribute a donation in the coming weeks. I’m leaning towards the local food bank since I know how much they’re hurting right now.

-Some new work clothes wouldn’t hurt.
I haven’t bought anything yet and I hope to put this one off for awhile. I’m not in desperate need yet, but with the colder weather upon us, I may need to buy a few nice warm outfits.

-Continue utilizing all the money saving strategies I currently use and continue to seek out new ways to save money.
Even though the drug stores have been a bit drab lately, I’m still couponing it up and nagging Jake to turn off lights behind him.

Frugal wedding surprise
October 23, 2008, 10:27 pm
Filed under: Frugality, Wedding

The cost of having a horse drawn carriage deliver me to the ceremony and sweep Jake and me off to the reception: $0

One of Jake’s uncles trains horses for sleigh rides and carriage rides and is insisting on being at our service on our wedding day. How could I possibly say no to having such a fairy tale detail at absolutely no cost?!

The more and more I plan this wedding, the more I realize that it really is all about the people that you know.

Paychecks, fleas, weddings, oh my
October 15, 2008, 3:30 pm
Filed under: Money Basics, Wedding

I will be getting my first big girl paycheck tomorrow! Not only am I happy about this for the obvious reasons, I’m also happy because I can now afford to buy some Frontline for our dog and cat. Our dog has gotten fleas from our yard (which is a shared yard with other neighbors and their pets) and has lovingly passed them on to our cat. I’ve been spraying them with a concoction of lemon juice and basil (and bathing my dog with white vinegar) at an attempt to kill and repeal fleas the natural way, but I think there are far too many fleas to make it a feasible solution. Once my paycheck hits, I’ll be ordering them the good stuff.

I got my wedding dress in the mail and it fits! It’s gorgeous and I am so excited to wear it. I do need to get it dry cleaned right before the wedding to get all the wrinkles out of it from shipping. I’m so glad the whole dress hunt is finally over. One less thing I’ll have to worry about as the day draws closer. I also recently ordered our save the date cards and I’m expecting them to come in in about two weeks.

I’m hoping that this coming weekend will be a quiet one for me so I can catch up on studying for the GRE and writing posts. I also need to find some time this week to go to Rite Aid to pick up lots of free after rebate items. It’s a shame there’s only 24 hours in a day.

So, it’s been awhile…
October 7, 2008, 7:04 pm
Filed under: Frugality, Wedding

Sorry for the lack of posts lately. Jake and I went out to his brother’s house this weekend for some quality family time, so I wasn’t able to sit down and write up any posts like I had hoped to. My college roommate is coming for a visit this coming weekend, so I’ll probably be pretty absent then too.

As far as frugal moves go, Jake and I just bought a roasting pan and we’re roasting a chicken as I type. Buying a whole chicken is much cheaper than buying chicken breasts, so we thought we’d give roasting a try. We also bought some cloth napkins on clearance for $.74 a piece at Target.

As far as wedding planning goes, I’m currently stalking the bids on a wedding dress on eBay that I just love. It’s getting pretty close to my limit, so we’ll see (the dress I bought a few weeks ago was way too small, so I had to return it- bummer). I’m getting ready to order our save the date cards, I just keep forgetting to do it. Maybe I’ll just bite the bullet and do it tonight while it’s on my mind.

EDIT: I got the dress! 😀