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Archive for December, 2006

Today's Financial Update

December 29th, 2006 at 07:19 pm

I did a couple of things to move closer to my New Years Resolutions today...

...hubby set up the automatic payments on his bank account to make a double payment on the home equity loan each month so now we don't even have to think about it (go hubby!)
...every time I go by the bank (which is almost everyday) I stop by and make a tiny deposit to my savings account. I'm trying to get to $5000 in savings and at least the money is getting to where it's supposed to be albeit slowly. I'm sure the tellers talk about the crazy lady who makes $5 deposits everyday.

Panic is starting to set in--hubby's huge extended family is having a family reunion cruise this summer; this will include between 50 and 60 family members. We are directly responsible to see that 15 people make it to the cruise (us, hubby's kids and grandkids) and I'm sure we will end up paying for half (or more!) of this group to go. :I And, since hubby is the oldest male in the family (it's an Asian family at that), he is more or less responsible to help any of the extended family that needs it. I'm sure it will be well worth it in the end...it's just all of the dancing dollar signs I see when I close my eyes

2007 Goal Report

December 28th, 2006 at 08:06 pm

2007 hasn't even started yet but I do have a goal report... (typical "type A" personality--I need to complete some 2007 goals before we even get to 2007 but that's another story).

Here are my 2007 goals:

--Have $500 on hand in my home.
--Have $5,000 in savings in the bank.
--Pay off Macys CC ($270)
--Pay off Mastercard ($1,000)
--Make double payments on home equity loan each month.
--Pay cash for every single purchase this year (except for bills which will be paid by check or online). No debit card, no credit card--CASH ONLY!
--Increase income from my business to $10,000 a month.
--Travel near or far once a month.
--Develop a plan to be able to live in a tropical locale (preferably Asia) at least four months out of the year (the older I get the less I like the colder months here) without going into debt to do it.

So far I have paid off the Macy's card (it was actually $350 instead of $270--guess it was some last minute purchases), and have paid cash for all of my purchases for the past week (since it is the end of the month and I'm low on cash, I haven't bought anything except for gas and a 14 cent candycane which was marked down from 49 cents and was much cheaper than the Starbucks next door). I have put $58 in savings towards the $5,000. I sold a textbook on half.com yesterday so that money will go into savings as soon as I get it. Tomorrow I will make a double payment on the home equity loan. Looks like travel will be every other month instead of every month--our schedule for this year will be Las Vegas in January, Hawaii/Micronesia cruise in March (going there to delivers 200 pounds of donated medical supplies to Fanning Island), Caribbean cruise in May for hubby's family reunion (about 45-50 people will be going), Vegas again in July for a poker tournament that hubby is going to be in, Japan in September and {{hopefully}} November and December in the Philippines. Still trying to figure out how to spend two months out of the country while still being able to pay our expenses here as well as there.

In January I hope to get the $500 together to have on hand, pay half of the Masterdard, take care of the Vegas trip, and get a freelance job with the local newspaper.

Giving on Christmas Eve

December 24th, 2006 at 09:25 am

I just watched a story on the news about a lady who got on a couple of buses in the Spokane (I think) area and handed out $50 bills to all of the passengers. They didn't even get her name she was in and out so fast but how cool is that to randomly give money to people who probably could really use it, especially at Christmas? They estimate she gave away about $1,000. Some people spend that much at Starbucks in in the space of a few months.

I think I will update my 2007 financial goals to add a section in savings for money to randomly give away next Crhistmas.

Merry Christmas everyone!

2007 Financial Goals

December 23rd, 2006 at 06:49 pm

After much contemplation (on an aforementioned quiet beach) I've come up with the following financial goals for myself for the coming year:

--Have $500 on hand in my home.
--Have $5,000 in savings in the bank.
--Pay off Macys CC ($270)
--Pay off Mastercard ($1,000)
--Make double payments on home equity loan each month.
--Pay cash for every single purchase this year (except for bills which will be paid by check or online). No debit card, no credit card--CASH ONLY!
--Increase income from my business to $10,000 a month.
--Travel near or far once a month.
--Develop a plan to be able to live in a tropical locale (preferably Asia) at least four months out of the year (the older I get the less I like the colder months here) without going into debt to do it.

That's it. Actually meeting even half of these goals will be quite a challenge. I think the most difficult goal will be paying cash for everything--something I have never done for longer than a week or so.

Back From Hawaii

December 23rd, 2006 at 12:31 pm

The Hawaii cruise was just awesome. Hawaii is so beautiful but the highlight of the trip was going to Fanning Island (a part of Kiribati in Micronesia) where they do not have electricity, running water or even shoes!

Due to cruise ship regulations, ships that sail American ports need to stop at at least one international port per cruise. Since Hawaii is so far away from everywhere else, the closest international port (not even a port but an island that the ship tenders its passengers to for the day) is Fanning Island.

Below is a picture of me with local kids from Fanning Island, a shot from the beach in Kona and a sculpture of lost luggage of SeaTac airport. Now you know where your lost luggage ends up...

I truely miss the weather!! 80 degrees and slightly humid is my favorite weather. We came back home and it was cold and rainy then this morning we woke up and were totally suprised with four inches of snow!





Beautiful Hawaii

December 8th, 2006 at 08:39 pm

We made it to Hawaii and it is just beautiful!! The weather is perfect (especially compared to Seattle where we had snow for the entire week before we left). This really is paradise except for the exhorbiant prices of just about everything. Fortunately we were able to get a room at the military base hotel which was a lot cheaper than outside the base (how was I supposed to know the Honolulu marathon was going on THIS weekend and every hotel room--except those that cost $500+) was booked? The food is great and MUCH cheaper in Chinatown where we are happy to eat anyway compared to the Waikiki tourist area. Anyway, here's a photo from Hanauma Bay (which by the way costs $1 to park and $5 per person to go down to the beach). We just took some photos and skipped the swimming (a mile down the road it was free to swim AND camp).

Praying for a Miracle

December 5th, 2006 at 09:32 pm

It's been over ten days since a family left Seattle to head back home to San Fransicso. The husband, wife and their two children were stranded in their car along a snowy road for nine days. Fortunately the wife and two children were found with the car yesterday but the husband had left the car to try to find help two days previously and still has not been found. I don't know why this has impacted me so much. I dont know the family although I often read the husband's columns (he is an editor at cnet.com). Anyway, I am praying for a miracle...hopefully the searchers will find him alive soon.

To read all of the info and updates about this story, click on the link at www.cnet.com.