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This & That

February 19th, 2012 at 08:55 am

**Still flush with cash and no refi end date in sight. Thinking of just maxing out our IRAs. If nothing else, will do it when I get paid 3/1. (Advancing $750 in payment that I would have made 4/1, to max out 2011).

Of course, I hope this refi is done before 3/1. But not holding my breath...

**I was craving kushari (ceejay's recipe) so made it for second time last night. I probably mentioned before, but the kids LOVE it.

I think why I like it so much is the garlic vinegar tomato sauce. Also, I accidentally put *way too much* garlic in the first time, but I think that was what sealed the deal on it. (Um, we keep pre-made minced garlic in our fridge which is like 1 tsp = 1 clove of garlic, something like that. So I put 3 Tablespoons of that stuff in by mistake. I realized right after I put it in - DOH - but it came out okay. I put a little less in this time but was still VERY garlic-y. I told the kids no vampires would bother us. Wink )

Oh, and the fresh fried onions were good but extremely time consuming to make, so I had dh just pick up some "french fried onions." We usually have some around for other recipes. I Was thinking to myself this defeats the frugality of the dish. So when I get home from work last night dh tells me, "Do you know how much these cost?!? $4,99!" & I think it was a smaller case than we usually get. I said, "I know, I know, I know how much they cost." & then he said, "But they were on sale for $0.99 - so I bought two." Which is why he bought the smaller ones. Heck, he should have bought 6 of them. Big Grin

What are the odds that I would call him and ask me to pick up some tomato sauce and french fried onions, and that they'd be on sale? Phew! Cheap/easy kushari for many meals to come...

**Interestingly, our Visa expired (got new cards with expiration) and Fidelity issued us a new AmEx due to a security breach. I suppose it kind of works out to just update everything at once. I updated our utilities, health insurance, verizon, amazon, etc. Dh needs to update payment method for Netfix, Blockbuster and Hulu. I am sure there are more, but those are the monthly and most importantly the automatic payments are updated. The gym just charged me so I have a month to go down and take care of that in person (they wouldn't change it over the phone, if I remember correctly from last time). I have been avoiding the gym this New Year. I haven't gone once. I usually gripe about how crowded it is. This year I just didn't bother going. Wink But, come spring the crowd will thin and I can resume my enjoyment of the gym. IT has been divine. & heck, you don't have to listen to me gripe.

**A friend lost her MIL to a long battle with cancer. I appreciate what a unique position I am in - must be like being a bartender or a hairdresser. As a tax advisor/accountant, people tend to be very open with me in regards to their finances. So, she was telling me a lot about it that I Don't think she would necessarily mention otherwise. For one, they noticed $20,000 was missing from her MIL's account suddenly and were able to track it down to a car purchase. They don't know who she bought a car for, but they have reason to believe it was a caregiver. Rolleyes What is interesting is it seems her will and finances and everything are mostly in order (which trust me, is RARE). But I kind of feel like, "There is always something!" We need to keep a very close eye on our sick and elderly friends and relatives. But, even so, sometimes there is nothing you can do. *sigh*

OF course, if it turns out to be who they think it is, I would think they would have some legal recourse. I just don't think they can think about that right now. Maybe once they get the estate settled (or well on it's way to being settled) they will take the time to pursue this. Though I'd understand having enough to deal with, without having to deal with this. It just pisses me off royally to think how I would feel if it were my parent or grandparent.

Anyway, seems like a lot of my young friends have lost their parents lately. (I know a 20-something who lost both in-laws and her father in the span of a few years. Geez...).

**I haven't been overly successful on the low-spend month. I mentioned I made a Target run a couple of weekends ago. Last weekend dh took BM to a 3D movie and we ordered lunch in. But, that said, I think it is possible we will only get gas once this month (both cars). The last time that happened was NEVER??? So there is a large element of *work work work* and no driving anywhere. Dh has done an excellent job with the leftovers. I have been eating out most Saturdays, but yesterday *eating out* was a $1 BK cheeseburger. So, it doesn't mean much. with good/ample leftovers, I have had no desire to eat out. Anyway, with the insanely low gas month, we might make up for spending too much last month. Phew! I think we will have to buckle down next weekend and spend no money. But for me, that is just one Sunday of no spending. Otherwise just work work work.

Oh, the kids have the week off so will have to touch base with dh. I am sure they have a very frugal week planned.

**Oh, and did unwittingly splurge $10.

Maybe it's because I am a library book girl, but I Don't really get much joy from physically holding books. & I am not a germ-phobe by any means, but sometimes you wonder where those books have been! Library books can get pretty old and tired.

Anyway, I got a library book - physical book - for a book I have been wanting to read. I got it and it is a very huge hard back. *Sigh* I just couldn't do it. I decided to make my first B&N gift card purchase. I had a $50 credit sitting there for ages for just this kind of thing, but have been way too cheap to use it.

SO, I made the purchase (ebook version) but it apparently charged my credit card. Rolleyes $10 for the dang thing! Yeesh! (IT's an OLD book).

I at first thought, "DOH," I used all my credit for my new nook. Oh well!!!

Then when I Told dh the tale, he told me that he did not use my old gift card for that. He actually tracked down the physical gift cars and it still had the balance and apparently had never been applied to my account. IT still bothers me because I *swear* that I did apply it to my account. But, who knows, maybe I was just waiting for first use. Then a year later I forget. Probably what happened.

Dh also found a pile of Amazon gift cars. I told him I *swear* those were all applied and used already, but maybe he should check the balances on those too. Because apparently I am crazy.

In the end, the purchase is said and done and I don't have time to deal with it, so I will pay the $10. If not, I will just have that much less credit for later, so I think it's fine (dh thinks I should call and get gift card applied). But yeah, I don't think will necessarily buy anything the next 2 months and $10 is well within my allowance.

I've been spending about $10/year on ebooks, so this gift card might last me another 5 years! But, this purchase was in an effort to enjoy my gift card and not take 5 years to use it. Wink

It's official - I am an ebook snob. But seriously, why would I want to have to lug around such a giant book??? Those days are gone for me.

For reference, anything new can easily be borrowed from the library in ebook form. So it's just the older stuff that it gets to be a conundrum. (Yes, of course the classics are free, so it's everything in between!)

**I have been doing good on the "not bringing in more stuff" side of things:

http://monkeymama.savingadvice.com/newusedfree-2012.html

6 Responses to “This & That”

  1. Looking Forward Says:

    We love garlic, me especially Smile, so we also have a jar of ready minced in the fridge AND a bulb of fresh I use too.

  2. frugaltexan75 Says:

    Your kids are having Spring Break already?? Ours is the last week of March, the week after our book fair. Perfect timing for me at least. Big Grin

  3. MonkeyMama Says:

    It's winter break. The kids have a weird schedule, BUT I think winter break in February is pretty normal in California. Spring break in April? All I know is they get all their breaks when work is busy. Rolleyes Except for summer, of course.

  4. ceejay74 Says:

    What a funny coincidence! I just made it again last week for the first time since I posted about it. Must be on the same kushari schedule. Smile

  5. LuckyRobin Says:

    We're having winter break right now, too, up here in WA although it's really only a four day weekend and one of them is a govenment holiday so we'd have had it off anyway.

  6. MonkeyMama Says:

    @ceejay - WEIRD!

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