Wednesday, September 24, 2014

so i bought a house....

It's true, I bought a house. A real house, Alicia, not a doll house or a dog house. Lol.

It kinda just happened. I had a friend whose aunt was selling this house and I went and looked at it and fell in love. It's a 3 bedroom 1 bathroom house in a good neighborhood. It has a detached garage and 2 sheds in the backyard. I got it for $82,900. I won't close until 10/29 but I don't care. I'm excited.

Now I'm going to have to readjust my budget but that's fine with me.

Wish me luck!

Monday, September 22, 2014

versatile blogger award ×2 (and a surprise at the end)

During my blogging hiatus I was nominated (TWICE) for a "Versatile Blogger Award," thank you to Kayla @ ShoeaholicNoMore and Brian @ Debt Discipline for the nominations.

This is an award that gets passed from blogger to blogger sort of as a way to get to know each other better. If you are nominated you have to share 7 things about yourself. Since I was lucky enough to be nominated twice I will be sharing 14. Yowza!

Stole this cute little pic from Kayla @ ShoeaholicNoMore


1. I am a Ginger. Not like fire engine red or like that super awesome orange-y red but strawberry blonde. It still counts.

2. I am obsessed with leopard print. It's seriously a problem. As I look around my room I count 13 random leopard print items. 

3. I have a brother who is probably my best friend. He is in prison. (Yikes!)

4. My sister is Chinese.

5. I collect Buddhas. Not because I'm Buddhist but I just feel like they're lucky. I have 20 or more Buddha statues in various sizes and colors.

6. I have never been out of the country! I would love to go to Mexico or somewhere tropical at some point in my life.

7. I have 5 tattoos. I love them all and I want so many more.

8. I have a serious love of guacamole. It just came over me once and now I get it anytime I eat Mexican food. Even just talking about it now I want to go get some!

9. I love cop shows. Law and Order SVU and Criminal Minds being my favorites. My mom thinks I should go into that line of work but I disagree, leave it to the people who don't mind the sight of blood.

10. I have a crush on J. Money. 

11. I love motorcycles. I tried to ride one once and it didn't work out too well (there were crutches involved) I also took a class to learn (I failed) but I love to get on the back of one and ride.

12. I also love Jeep Wranglers. I want one as my next car in the future. FYI I also think that if it's a 4 door Wrangler it does NOT count.

13. I think Johnny Depp is gross.

14. I BOUGHT A HOUSE. (more on that later)

That was the hardest thing to do! Coming up with 14 things to tell you about myself sounds like it would be easy but it is not!

My nomination for the award goes to Brandy @ Busted Budget


Friday, September 19, 2014

frugal fincon fiesta '14

Well as pretty much everyone and their dogs know its #FinCon14. And it's in NOLA (which is one of my dream vacation spots) and I'm not gonna lie, I'm jealous.
But some of us have to stick around and keep the blogosphere running! And we have to make that paper, lol.
So for those of us who are stayin we are having a blog hop.... would you expect anything else??

Here's the deets....
FRUGAL FinCon FIESTA

Join the FRUGAL FinCon Fiesta which will run Sep 18 – 20 to coincide with FINCON and allow people time to visit other blogs.

It’s a blog hop party and the purpose is to entertain questions from your readers.
This can be a great way to spawn future blog posts, if the answer is quite complex.

You can post some teaser questions and answers about random facts about yourself.

Non-blogger readers are encouraged to say ‘hi‘. (Oh please show us some love! <3)

Let’s do some banter in the comments as well, not the usual commenter comments and blogger responds. Let’s mix it up and comment to other’s comments for some $hits and giggles.

It will be super hot if you put a fiesta like picture in the header of your post.

We reserve the right to take down any spammy links or otherwise party-poopers who are not participating in the party with the spirit in which it was intended.

TWEET #FrugalFinConFiesta and HAVE FUN!

Let's do this guys.... ask me some questions.... the juicier the better!

Answer time!!!

Jean asked what my favorite vacation spot that I've been to- NYC. My mom took me there after I graduated high school and it was the best trip ever.

Brian asked me if my coworkers know about my blog, May asked the same and if they know then what do they say? - My current coworkers do not know. I feel that with some of my content its better to not broadcast it. I had one coworker at my old bank who knew and she thought it was great.

Femme frugality asked what my biggest PF win has been- this is a tough question. I think in my whole life my biggest win has been me paying so much on my car. I bought it for 18k in 2010 and I'm down to 5600 now.  That probably just means I'm right on track but it feels good to see such a drop in the number.

Brooke asked what is one big sacrifice/tactic I've used to pay off my debt more aggressively- The envelope system has definitely been my best tactic. I don't follow it like Dave Ramsey says but it works. My biggest sacrifice is just cutting back which seems silly but its true.

Tre asked what have I learned from starting my blog- That I'm not alone and that really helps. Its nice to be "surrounded" by people who know what I feel everyday and stuff.

Debs asked how did I decide on a career in banking and what would my second choice be- I kinda just happened upon the job and ended up loving it. My second choice would be an event planner but in my city there isn't a huge market for that.

Natalya asked how I lift myself up when its a bit too much on the repayment front- I dont know. I honestly still haven't figured out that aspect and thats probably why I disappear so frequently because I feel overwhelmed a lot.

Downstairs in Debt asked me what do I enjoy doing when I'm not blogging- I love hangin out with my friends. Watching movies. Doing crafts. Being silly. :)

Thursday, September 18, 2014

goal update

I think that maybe my goals were a little too large this month. I feel as though I'm suffering from goal overload. Maybe also just not feeling very motivated to do anything, finance related or otherwise.

I did make $8.91 by selling a wallet online. As soon as that hits my account I'm moving it directly to savings. Not that $8.91 is much but hey, better than nothin! One day a couple of weeks ago I was really sick and left work after being here for an hour so my check was smaller than normal. That sucked. But what sucked even more is that I had quite a bit of stuff that I needed to pay with that check. Like get my car tag renewed and my phone bill and I owe my mom a little money, and of course my car payment. So I'm basically down to 100 bucks to last me until the 29th.

Life is full of ups and downs and maybe right now I'm in the downs but it won't last forever.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

fail.

So I'm having some serious writer's block which is why I haven't been posting anything. That obviously doesn't look good for my blog posting goal for the month.

I'm in training for my promotion doing the hands on stuff: opening accounts, taking loan apps, doing wire transfers and stuff. It's a really slow branch and basically I spend a lot of time reading articles on BankRate and Investopedia.

How do y'all deal with writer's block?

Sunday, September 7, 2014

playing catch up.

It's been a rough week for me so I haven't posted in the last few days which just adds to my upset because it puts me behind on my goals for the month.

On Thursday my grandpa suffered a stroke and was airlifted from a hospital in his town to a hospital here in the city. He has been in the hospital since then and I've been up to visit him everyday, he seems to be better but when he gets tired he started having trouble with words and he gets confused. Then on Saturday I got a text from my mom saying that one of her dogs died. Now this would be pretty sad to anyone but this dog was my mom's pride and joy. She had designer hoodies, designer dog carrying bags, hell this dog basically had her own room. Needless to say my mom is devastated. My dad is also upset. I'm upset but it hurts more to see my mom so sad. So that's why I haven't been around, but I'm back and here is an update on my goals:

Update/September Week One:

  • Blog 5 days per week: Fail. I blogged 3 days. I did have family stuff going on so I'm not going to take this fail too hard, there is always next time.
  • Track my spending: Pass! I'm sad to say that most of my money was spent of junk food but I tracked my spending and I still have cash left over.
  • $1000 E-Fund: N/A. I have $600 in my savings account right now. I haven't gotten paid yet this month which is why it hasn't moved. 
  • Spend 2 hours on my side hustle: Pass-ish? I spent about an hour working on putting some stuff online to sell. 
  • *Bonus* 30 minutes of activity 3 days a week: Technically this is a fail. I did a lot of walking around at the hospital but it didn't count as physical activity. 

I do plan on going to the gym tomorrow after I see my grandpa so I hope I have it in me when tomorrow gets here. 

So, week two, here we go. 

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

what does your checking account do for you?

So more often than not people just walk into a bank and open a basic account but they don't really know what perks.... or downsides.... there are to that account. Do you know anything about your account?

Being that I've been in banking for 3 years I know what all of my accounts offer me. I know the minimum balance requirements and I know about the fees that I would have to pay if I was to overdraw my account. I urge everyone to get online (or be really crazy and go INSIDE a branch) and look up your account type or request a pamphlet and learn about it.

Did you know that some banks offer a discount on their loan rates just for holding an account there? I will say that usually that means you have to auto debit your loan payment from your account but c'mon y'all.... almost every PF blogger will tell you to automate your finances. My employee checking account offers me a 0.25% discount on my loan if I auto debit. I'm not gonna try to be a math whiz kid and tell you how much that would be on an $18,000 auto loan but it would be worth looking in to!

Do you know if your checking account earns interest? I used to think this was basically non-existent (and let's be real, interest rates are terribly low, so it won't be much) but some checking accounts do offer interest depending on your average collected balance. Only one of my checking accounts is interest bearing and it is on a tiered basis, so from 2500-5000 average collected balance I would get a certain percentage and so on and so forth. Now that looks like a lot to have in a checking account but some people do!

Everyone knows that each bank is going to have fees for various things from overdraft protection to mobile banking, but did you know some banks charge to receive paper statements? I mean when you think about the money the bank would save by just sending an email with your statement instead of printing the statement and paying for postage and mailing it out, it really does make sense. One thing that I like about e-statements is that the bank basically saves these on their network for usually about 7 years so you can go back that far and print statements when you need them instead of keeping your file cabinet full of statements you probably don't need that much.

I'm not going to pretend that I know the perks of every checking account everywhere but I am a firm believer in knowing what your bank/account offers. One of my accounts offers me discounts on meds and eye glasses. I can even send in $100 worth of receipts each quarter and they will send me a check for $10. So basically I send in $100 worth of receipts for groceries and gas and I get $10 back. That's awesome.

You may research your account and see that you are getting fees because you don't carry the required minimum balance or because your direct deposit doesn't meet the requirements the bank sets forth. Who really wants to be paying fees? Not me.

Research your stuff, you won't be sorry!

*****I can't get the link to work but this post is part of Financially Savvy Saturdays

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

pet peeves part 5.

And here we are ladies and gents, another round of "Things That Piss Me Off..." hahahaha. Yeah right. Just a few more bank teller pet peeves to [hopefully] provide you with a laugh on this lovely Tuesday...

Please be prepared- This is mostly for people who come to the drive thru. It irks me so bad when someone comes to one of my lanes and they 1. have no idea what they want to do 2. ask a million questions like I don't have 58 other things happening in the bank 3. sit around taking their time like there is not a line forming behind them! I am more than willing to send you a deposit slip or a pen if you need one but if you are going to need to spend more than 5 minutes asking me questions, please take a few extra moments and come in to the bank!

Please be patient- This kinda goes hand in hand with the last one... If you come to the drive thru (or the lobby) please be patient. If there are 3 other cars waiting you are not going to get helped any sooner if you drive to the other lane that just opened. We go in order of who came first and that's not going to change! Also when you come up to me after you have had to wait for someone else, that is NOT my fault. Do NOT get an attitude with me. I will travel thru that little tiny tube and I will poke you in the eye with an ink pen. Bet.

STAY OUT OF MY BUBBLE- I don't know how your bank lobby is set up but let me tell you a little bit about mine.... so you walk in and there are 3 open offices to your left. To your right is a little writing station with all the deposit slips and withdrawal slips in their respective cubby areas. Past the writing area are 2 offices (one is mine!) and then the "teller pod." The pod is a round island station with 2 computers and a cash dispenser between the computers. It is very open so that the customers could come around and stand right next to me. Or like one 3 year old girl who comes in with her grandma who likes to run around behind me and wait for the money to dispense so she can give it to her grandma. Anyway, getting off track, an older gentleman walked in one day last week and walked over to me and stood so close I could feel the hair on his arms tickling my arms. He was basically yelling in my ear and his breath smelled terrible. That being said, STAY OUT OF MY BUBBLE!! Respect other people's personal space, yall.

Okay, now I'm going to vent to you all about a co-worker of mine. I find myself thinking "she's only 20," at least 10 times a day because she gets on my nerves that often. So a few days ago she comes in to work and she tells me that her and her boyfriend talked about getting married.... (vomit).... well the hang up in the plan is that he is currently married and his first wife just "won't sign the divorce papers." Whatever you say, dear. The first wife apparently wanted a divorce so I'm not sure why she all of the sudden won't sign the papers. They live separately and don't have children so it's just real weird. Anyway my co-worker spent 30 minutes searching online what has to happen before she can marry this dude... well first, dude needs a divorce and second she apparently has to wait for 6 months before they can marry. Laws are different everywhere so now she thinks that since he was married in Tennessee things may be different. I had to listen to her talk about this until she got off work and I actually kept repeating "you're 20," to her and she got pretty irritated but I mean really, she sounded like an idiot. Of course if I was in a similar situation then I would probably be doing the same thing but I'm not and she is annoying.

Whew, thanks for listening.

Monday, September 1, 2014

let's do this

So here we go with my September goals!

September 1.

On Saturday morning I filled up my envelopes with cash and started tracking all my spending with a new app that I downloaded. It's a pretty awesome app and so far I haven't found anything wrong with it (and I'm pretty picky so I've definitely tried to find something wrong with it).
Expense Manager
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One thing that I haven't discussed with everyone yet is that I got a "semi-promotion," I say semi because I didn't get a raise. That seems silly, right? But when I started my new job my starting hourly wage was more than the other tellers made. So basically I've been making the hourly wage of a banker already and just haven't been doing the job, yet. The exciting news is that this week (starting Tuesday) I will be in training for my new job title. I will be spending 4 days in a classroom learning about loans and opening accounts and all kinds of stuff. Of course I will have to take another test which won't be fun but I'm pretty pumped about it!

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I've decided that along with my September goals I am also going to give myself "sub-goals" to work on during the week. This week they will be relatively simple (I think, lol):

~No fast food- during my last training class I ate fast food every day. Budget killer for sure! So I'm actually going to pack a bag of snacks and stuff to take with me EVERYDAY so that I stay satisfied and don't make a trip to WhatABurger. 

~Spend time after work studying- I am really nervous about this training class that I will be taking and I am going to try my hardest to spend some time each night studying my notes and what ever materials they provide me with. 

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Blogs of Note:

I have recently discovered a new blog that I just love and I want to give her a little shout out so that everyone who reads my blog can run on over to hers and check her out: