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Drug cartels and swine flu..

April 26th, 2009 at 08:34 am

Our vacation to Mexico is under a month away and I have to say, the headlines lately are waning my enthusiasm. So far, Puerto Vallarta sounds fairly isolated from all this crud...but it is very concerning. Needless to say, we are keeping a close watch as this possible epidemic/pandemic develops. Who knew when we planned this trip last year (and my first 'big' trip ever) that we would have to worry about drugs/violence and deadly viruses...gads.

My GS (5) spent the night last night and as always, we had a great time. This morning we are watching cartoons while gramma wakes up with some coffee. The hub is sick, so he is sleeping in.

A short time ago I bought some Classico pasta sauce on sale with a coupon and we used it last night...it was REALLY GOOD. What a nice surprise. I love it when you get a good deal and enjoy it too. Smile

Yesterday was housework and laundry...today will be grocery shopping and some decluttering and general 'get ready to go back to work' stuff....But right now, its coffee time. Big Grin

Update on DD3's Surgery

April 23rd, 2009 at 07:21 pm

A short time ago, I posted about DD3 needing surgery which is considered "cosmetic" by our insurance company and therefore, not covered. The estimate for the surgery $8700

Today, we got a second opinion. This second doctor recommended the same surgery that the first did. I explained to him that he was the second opinion and that the first had learned that this surgery would not be covered so I would need to pay cash. Bless this man's heart, he reduced his fee drastically and is only going to charge us $5600. That is a $3100 savings over the first estimate. When his scheduler talked with us, she was blown away by the price and explained that this was much less than the normal charge. DD3's surgery is now scheduled for June 17th. She is so excited. Her defect has meant wearing a prosthesis for the last 5 years...and she has never worn 'normal' things because of it...for the first time in her life, she will go shopping like other teens this summer!!!

Then, when I got home there was a new credit card in my mail box with a $9k limit. Unfortunately, I just paid unexpected taxes for $3000 and so we do not have a savings to fall back on for the surgery. But what are the chances of finding something like this in the mailbox on the day we learn of the surgery??

I also can borrow against my 401k @ 4.25% for the surgery...so I have a couple of choices on how to pay. I just have to decide which is the best option.

I wish I could pay cash for it...but we just paid the taxes...and the savings have been depleted. But the surgery is going to happen NO MATTER WHAT WE HAVE TO DO so that DD3 can finally feel 'normal'. (There is simply no price tag on that!!)


My vacation is ONE MONTH from today!! I am getting very excited!!!

Blessing abound...what a great day!!!

Starting the week off right...

May 26th, 2008 at 09:36 pm

Thank goodness for an extra day to the weekend.

I am ready to go back tomorrow. My laundry is all ready to go-

My lunch is packed..Turkey sandwich, mustard and lettuce on oatnut bread + low fat string cheese.

I have a cup of oatmeal (steel cut..good quality) ready for each day + fruit.

So week one is ready to go- and if all goes well, my first week on a good eating/spending plan is off to a good start.

I made a roast in the crockpot today, which I sliced thin and we then made French Dip sandwiches with...they were yummy. There is enough left for taco's this week...which is what we are having on Wednesday.

I also made breakfast at home yesterday and today..hashbrowns, sausage, eggs and cheddar (tomatoes and green onions for flavor)..one skillet meal...with some toast....very yummy and tied us over to dinner.

We have a menu plan for all meals this week.

I will post our results on Friday or Saturday next week... so far, it feels great!!

CATS and the final day of vaca

April 13th, 2008 at 09:10 am

Dinner was wonderful, CATS was phenomenal...the costumes, the music, the dancing!! What a fun "free to the hub and me" night!

I am on the final day of my vacation today. I feel rested and I am ready to go back to work.

Today will be a spend day- we are needing a good grocery shop to restock and prepare for the busy schedules.

I am planning to spend the day today decluttering and doing laundry. I love having a whole day ahead of me with the sun out- and no place to go. Just enjoy doing what I enjoy doing. Smile

I hope you all have a good one!

dinner out with nana

March 18th, 2008 at 08:45 pm

The hub had his second procedure on his back this afternoon. I couldnt go with him because I was in an all day meeting at work. (long story, but my boss is allowing me to be more involved with the big picture stuff in addition to being his assistant because of my background..whcih is something I really enjoy be a part of.)

Anyway...the all day meeting went long and wore me out...then the hub was very hungry from the "don't eat after midnight" rule for medical procedures.

So we decided to go out for mexican food tonight and we invited my mom.

She INSISTED on paying..which is not something I would normally let her do- but it clearly was important to her. So I simply thanked her for a nice dinner. And she felt goood about "treating".

We talked about my dad and laughed and cried...and I think it was a first step in all of us healing a little. (he died December 29).

so, a great end to a long day. Tomorrow we have another all day meeting, but I have already laid out the meat to defrost...definately eating at home!

Oh yeah...and the hubs back...so far, so good. Please keep your fingers crossed for him. Hugs

And the sex is....

March 13th, 2008 at 09:01 pm

Is it a boy...or a girl....today was the test...but first a little about the day.

I work for such a wonderful credit union. Our CEO is always looking for ways to impact our community. He is considering doing something similar to Oprahs big give in our community. How fun would that be??? He asked us to think about the idea and come back to the table with plans to make it work...so, part of my job is now thinking about how to give away money!!

Next, several of us have graduated from an experience called Rapport Leadership. My boss is going this weekend...and as part of the tradition the graduates take the soon to be attendee to lunch---so today was a 'freebie' for lunch.

Tomorrow morning we are having a company wide potluck..my contribution is a dozen eggs and a bottle of ketchup. Sounds like we will have many wonderful concoctions to choose from...

Tomorrow night, we have sponsored two tables at the annual Goodwill Employee Awards banquet. This is one of my favorite things to attend. Goodwill employs so many people who have disabilities...and it is so rewarding to be a part of their recognition banquet!

(are you seeing why I love my job so much??)

ok, back to the baby news...I was working on a project and DD1 shows up with ultrasound pics....and we are having a little boy!! This means I will have two grandaughters and two grandsons!!!

Looks like I will be knitting in BLUE for a while!!!!

Boy/Girl...we will know tomorrow!

March 12th, 2008 at 09:41 pm

You guys might remember...I learned about this newest grandbaby being "on the way" the same night I put both my parents in the ER and learned my dad's heart was failing and we would only have him a few more days.

The circle of life in its purest form.

We find out tomorrow if she is a she or he is a he...DD1 already has a DD...so secretly I am hoping for a DS for them. (right after healthy of course)

Thank you to everyone for the well wishes on the blogoversary...I dont know how to add that little ticker but...I am now 364 days from my next blogoversary!!

My boss again today mentioned that I will get to go to DC next year...Wouldnt it be neat if I could meet some of you east coast bloggers??...hmm, we have about a year to plan...

I am going to rework the budget this weekend to insure that I am setting aside enough to take some extra time while in DC..I am sure there is much I need to see???? Perhaps some of you can provide ideas??

I will let you know if we are knitting pink or blue tomorrow!!!

A no spender here!

March 1st, 2008 at 06:36 pm

Love love love Saturdays that are free! Free from committment, free from stress and free (no spending!)

Here is how this one went:

woke up at 6am...wanted to enjoy a quiet morning with my coffee. Read the online paper while sipping home brewed java.

10am the hub got up and went out to the wood yard...worked until breakfast was ready...Bacon, eggs, hashbrowns and toast..oh the joys of a well stocked fridge!

laundry, a nice hot shower using free samples to make it extra nice! (Thank you wal-mart!)

DD1 loaned us a movie she rented...so a free movie...popcorn...water.

Burgers cooked at home...followed by a quiet discussion by the fire.

And now the hub is channel surfing while I peruse the internet.

Nice clean sheets to climb into tonight...

and a great relaxing day to reflect on!!

Score at the store!!

February 27th, 2008 at 08:36 pm

I scored today guys. Have you ever heard of Harry & Davids??? They are a big corp who specialize in fruits, nuts, gift baskets, etc. Well, their headquarters is right here...pretty darn close to where I work. So I stopped in their store on my lunch break today and they had baskets on sale super cheap!! What's cool is that they are great quality. I bought a couple of those picnic baskets with the lifting lids, fully lined for $9.99...I bought wood bed trays ( for breakfast in bed) white with pretty scalloped edges for $4.99 each...easter baskets for $2.99-$3.99 ...and some great red totes that I can use for gift bags at christmas for $2.47...WOW. I love living near this company because they sell their overstocks at ridiculously low prices after the holidays. This stuff all normally sold for $30-75 originally. wow.

I thought I would put a great teapot for one, napkin and some teas and cookies together for the bed tray... or a vase with a rose and a magazine and coffees...you get the idea. I am going to keep one of the picnic baskets. Ive wanted one forever, but never felt justified spending so much..but for $9.99 I am thrilled!!

The red totes...oh I love this...i bought 8 and will watch for sales all year-- when the whole family goes for our week at the big rental house the week aafter Christmas, I will give everyone one as a care package to use that week...candles, toiletries, deck of cards, etc...too fun!!

I love good deals...REALLY LOVE GREAT DEALS!!!

redifining ones self/life

December 28th, 2007 at 08:40 pm

I have wanted to take some time to redefine myself and really decide what I want to accomplish both personally and financially. This time with my dad has made me even more dedicated to making some changes.

This morning, while sitting with my dad, I got online and set up some direct deposits. Savings and vacation. My husband and I do not take vacations and that is something I hope to change. Aside from camping, we do not go on vacation really.

I am also setting up a designated savings account. Even though I returned to work, our savings have been depleated by extended-family needs to the point that we have even incurred about $4000 in credit card debt (in addition). It was not that long ago that our debt was paid off except for mortgage...now we have business debt and credit card debt again. Clearly, financial goals need to be set again.

My dad has been very restless today. I am exhausted. He does not communicate anymore. Id give anything for one of his strong hugs. But those are forever gone. If any of you pray, please, please pray that he passes soon. He has been in so much pain and we are so ready for him to be at peace. If you still have your dad, don't forget to hug him tight. You will miss those when they are gone.

Much financial work to do, but I feel like I took a couple of baby steps today.

Tougher than I ever thought...

December 27th, 2007 at 12:48 am

I won't go into details...but this is tough guys. Not so peaceful for my poor dad. We are on day 3 and it has been the worst so far..not sure what tomorrow will bring.

Hopefully peace for him. He has had a very tough time. Every once in a while he stirs enough and gives me a glimmer of his old self and his sense of humor...but mostly he is talking to the unseen about the unknown...

Mad at WAMU

October 13th, 2007 at 11:16 am

Ok...I have often tooted the WAMU horn, but now Im cranky. Here is the recent story:

Well, to give you the recent story I have to go back a little ways and explain that, long story short, WAMU charged a $6 fee on an accout I thought was closed, bringing the balance to -$6. I did not realize this fee was out there...and the following month they added a $2 late fee....which stayed on that account for about 6 months. One day, I went in to apply for a loan (ironically with WAMU) and they told me my credit showed a SERIOUS DELINQUENCY. WHAT?? So I got a copy of my report and there was the serious delinquency....all $8 of it.

I called WAMU and was told to submit the $8 with a letter asking that the delinquency be removed from my credit report.- Which I immediately did.

So...now the recent.

I was making a deposit to the hubs logging account and they said "You are a premium customer and are pre-approved for a credit card for the business." I thought this would be fantastic way for the business to start a credit profile and said OK.

Yesterday, I get two notices from WAMU....one saying, sorry- your credit sucks (yeah, obviously WAMU didnt hold up to their end of the bargain, cause otherwise my credit is excellent)...and the other, a letter telling me that I am a preferred customer, would I like a home equity loan.

WAMU does not know it yet, but they've made me more cranky than they realize...my goal now is to close my checking, business checking, home loan and HELOC with them over this irritating $8...I know of a few other places that would like my business.

ARGH. WAMU, you suck.

disclaimer * pity party for one....

May 31st, 2007 at 08:03 pm

My dad is in the hospital and not doing so good.

Wow guys...I am remembering the stress of a full time job (even one you love) + a sick loved one + lack of sleep + a husband who works the opposite shift of yours.

Needless to say stressed, pooped and scared is a sucky place to be.

and what does all that do to a budget..um...no time for shopping, cooking, or packing a lunch...so add to everything else and extra pound or two or five from a sucky fast food diet (not to mention the lack of energy)...and the added cost that lack of preparation brings...and you have a really bad cocktail.

My birthday is this weekend...and I have two wishes...one that my dad makes it...and the other that if he continues to suffer, that he passes peacefully and quickly...how is that for truly contradicting matters of the heart.

sigh.

What is 40-30-30?

February 6th, 2007 at 08:28 am

A few of you have asked for more information on the 40-30-30 eating plan that I am following so here goes:

Basically, the plan is to eat a balance of the right carbohydrates = 40%, protiens = 30% and fats=30% for each meal and snack. And to drink plenty of water.

This provides the nutrition your body needs and in a combo that allows your body to burn fat, rather than muscle. It also keeps your sugar levels and energy levels even throughout the day (a huge plus for me)

So, in the morning I eat a bagel or english muffin, topped with a lean meat and a little low-fat cream cheese. Or an omlette with eggs, egg whites, low fat cheese and wheat toast.

Lunch and dinner are similar combinations. Meals are combined with certain fruits and veggies.

The 'glycemic index' of each food is a determination on the plan.

If you want more information, just search 40-30-30. I believe The Zone diet is a similar plan. I have the 40-30-30 book which provides a great menu plan and a breakdown of foods- both fresh and prepared so that I can incorporate them (or not) into my menu.

I am staying on track and I've lost an average of 2 lbs each week~ but best if all, Im not overly hungry between meals- I dont have the fluctuations in energy and I am seeing results!!

I have also done a major mental overhaul. I honestly focus on the nutritional value of my 'input' rather than the pleasure or taste. I guess you could say Im 'eating to live' and not vis versa....and the results are newfound CHEEKBONES and hopefully soon Ill discover HIPBONES as well! Wink

I stongly believe that no ONE plan works for everybody- you have to factor in personal tastes and lifestyle...but mainly, do what works for you.


I've dropped a size!!!!

February 5th, 2007 at 06:09 pm

Yep. Bought smaller jeans $19.99, and a new top $2.34 (clearance) today and they are a size smaller!! Big Grin This is one splurge I didnt mind making at all!!!

doing the happy dance!

ps...people are starting to ask me if Ive lost weight...so it must be showing!!!