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Tuesday Tidbits

August 28th, 2007 at 11:27 pm

*Got signed up for balanced billing - both electric and gas. Gas told me they were going to bill me $30/month. I think our electric average is around $40/month. They didn't tell me the amount up front. But we'll see. I'll miss the $10 bills, but oh well, makes budgeting easier. (& I guess that I won't miss the $100 bills!!!!!!)

*Still hadn't gotten the paperwork to switch to metered water, but I guess they called dh today to say it is still in the works. August is a bad month, but metered water in September would be nice (will save $10-$15). Maybe October - as long as we get it by the really cheap winter months. Big Grin

*Experian sent me a note that they deleted a bunch of crap from my credit report and will permanently block all of it. Woohoo. We'll see what Equifax says. Transunion was called by Citi (with me on the line) but they were the ones that had that horrid FICO score. If it doesn't bounce back up by next month I will write in for the "permanent block." Maybe should do regardless, since I swear they said they "removed stuff" (got that in writing) but nothing about a "permanent block." Maybe that has to be requested (certain states like California allows fraudulent stuff to just be permanently blocked from your report if you ask). I am also terribly confused by what the credit Bureaus do and do not share. They seem to share all the info with each other, but then others say they don't. From my experience they seem to be sharing all the info - if anything reports on one it reports on the others. I think I even read if you requested a block with one it will send on the info to the others to block as well. Well, we'll see. see if I get more confirmations or if I will have to pull more reports and send off for more block requests.

All the instructions and forms said you can only block what is showing, but I sent along the police report and they blocked everything that has shown up since I pulled the report - as much keeps trickling onto the report - so woohoo. Score one anyway for a tedious process. For one, Lowes has taken the balance off my report from day 1 but it still shows on my report (with a $0 balance). I assume this means it won't show up at all. Other places are still showing on my credit report with balances while they resolve things though I think most said they wouldn't. (Whatever...). IT should be a good month before I get anywhere near resolving all of this. Waiting for them all to officially "clear me" and take everything off my credit report. I think most quoted it as a 30-day process from when I sent in the affidavits (all signed/notarized/sent/received, so just a waiting game here on out.

*We weren't home all weekend, and yesterday was a LONG day (Marine World - went well - kids loved it). Tomorrow I am hosting a playgroup with like 10 moms and 15 kids I don't know. Oy Vey! Don't ask - long story... (Of course funny enough dh asks me what we are doing for dinner - LOL. I said - do you think we can afford to feed all these people? Play date is AFTER dinner of course. He was asking if he should pick up some pizzas...)

*Which reminds me I am SICK of pizza. We did the take/bake cheap yummy pizza thing last Monday for guests, had lots of leftovers (since dh bought 2 - told him we only needed one! Wink ). Pizza Saturday for birthday party and then we went to visit dh's friends Sunday and they pulled out the pizza menu. We just looked at each other. "Sure, sounds great." (If I never see another pizza again). Well, we did get a lot of free pizza - so hey...

*Made a big deposit at the bank. My mom reimbursed me for all the airline tickets (like $3k) and I had kids' birthday money (transferring to Vanguard in the next month). I had been waiting until I needed it and was ready to transfer so it didn't just get spent... I mean I was going to transfer it regardless, but now I can just transfer the actual checks once they deposit. I was starting Automatic Imvestments for the kids in September. & then I had dh's focus group money - deposited the cash like a good girl.

*Dh was inspired by my dad to attempt pest control on his own. Woohoo. We tried in the past and he just wasn't helping me, lord knows I don't have the time. We found a cheap service for a while (who would only come when we needed it - thank you) but they gave up on wasps (too many injured employees and that is our only real problem, though I have seen more spiders than I have cared to this last year inside the house. We are lucky the house is air tight enough few get in though). I haven't balanced my disgust for chemical pest control with my disdain for spiders. It's irrational I know, but I just can't stand the things. Anyway, some guy came around with some insane quotes last week and dh wanted to sign up. I asked him to call around. We need someone to come once or twice at the beginnign of wasp season and that is about it. We don't need to pay $60 each and every month (nor do I want to spray that much as we try to be somewhat environmentally conscious). But after a year if no spraying something needs to give - indeed. So when we were talking to my dad over the weekend about frugalness or something dh got inspired to give it a whirl himself. We'll see. I just don't want him to get stung. But yeah my dad has always done the pest spraying for our home growing up. So he had some tips.

Which reminds me our guests from Canada came to the door and said, "You get tarantulas here???" Yeah, just want the arachnophobe wants to hear. They were going on and on about our BUGS which I found rather ironic. I know I wouldn't last a minute in the south myself. Maybe we should move north! IT wasn't a tarantula - just a really big spider. The thought will give me nightmares though. But yeah told them they hasn't seen nothing until they go spend a summer day in North Carloina - hehe.

*We decided my van needs new tires. Still 2 originals (2 blew but ran over bolts both times - not much you can do). I told dh I thought the used ones looked worn but he convinced me they weren't. We're pulling out the penny and I think he was guaging the wrong areas of the tire. So over the weekend his dad mentioned my tires looked pretty worn. (Van has about 45k miles on it and I am sure the 2 are original tires - probably crappy factory ones at that). So I asked my dad to check since he is the car expert. In true frugal fashion he tells me front tires are pretty iffy (should replace) but the back ones have 6 months. If he were me he'd wait 6 months on the back ones. But get the tires that last 60k miles. I am thinking if I am taking my car in and getting tires, and they are going to last 60k miles, might as well get 'er done. But that's my dad. We usually just have our mechanic guy do it (he advises us but we haven't taken the cars in much since we have 2 newer cars). So I asked my dad where he recommended and he recommended someone down the street from them in San Jose. He said he would call and get me a quote. Sounds good - next time we drive down - my dad will help me get a deal.

That being said I don't think our mechanic charged particularly much for the 2 or 3 times he replaced all my tires (I have gone through a lot of cars lately) so I will probably call him for a quote too. If they are that "iffy" on the front rather just get them done - can take them in tomorrow if I wanted.

Not a biggie, but then dh tells me he doesn't think his tires have ever been changed. I vaguely remember they have been but I couldn't remember when. The car has well over 70k miles. I figure he is insane. I haven't pulled out the paperwork yet (hardly been home) but at lunch I remembered to look at his tires. Clearly new. Probably replaced in the last year or 2, but the car is never driven. I was pleased to glance at his tired and see they obviously don't need replaced too - phew. I mean if they did - what are you going to do - we'll replace them - we have the cash. Safety first. But he was freaking me out. I'll pull out the paperwork and see when we got those tires...

Always something...

*Yesterday we spent $110 at Marine World (Discovery Kingdom or whatever - just changed the name). I was wrong. Our tickets were $30/each. & parking was $15. (Are they serious?) Of course if you looked at the prices the day without discount would have cost us something like $200 (tickets only - not even parking). Who pays that????????? Everyone we saw had a coupon of course. But they day was PERFECT - just dead as could be - not a lot of people. We did good! Kids had a blast. Spent $35 on food for the grand total of $110. Of course we were lazy and tired and had a $5 Taco Bell meal on the way home and stopped by Rite Aid for some 99-cent ice cream so made it a $118 day I guess.

I also made the observation that the more fit people had the fancier strollers yesterday - for the toddlers and preschoolers. IT strikes me as odd. I guess BM has never been a stroller fan (too much energy) and in the last few months LM has pretty much been done with his (pretty much after he had been walking just a few months). When we took them to SF zoo a few months back I was amazed how well LM but at the end of the night we had to carry him out and about killed us (he is a good 30 pounds). But yesterday we brought the stroller "in case" but left it in the car. Didn't need it in the least. Since we are more in shape carrying him at the end of the day exhaustion point was just a piece of cake. & I am just happy one less thing we have to pack next time. I have read that people are keeping their kids in strollers way too long (part of the whole obesity thing) and yesterday I really noticed it. I just think it was extremely ironic that the most fit people had the biggest strollers - LOL. Dh said it was a status symbol thing. I don't know - maybe. As for us, every time we have to pack (or more importantly, every time I have to REMEMBER ) one less thing, we do the happy dance of joy. I think we are about done with strollers... I say woohoo!

*THough I have been a little stressed lately about money (when am I not?) I am feeling rather at one with the financial universe all the same. Life is good. I left work early last week to hang out with BM at preschool "because he wanted me to." Sure, what the heck. Took yesterday off. Going to Japan in a few weeks. Dh and the kids are going to Florida as well in OCtober. Our savings is going in a positive direction for the first time since kids and one-income and all that. Life is good. What is there really to complain about. I already blogged that while everyone is "Going Back to School" we are enjoying the kids. Maybe it is because the kids are at a good age too. Moving past diapers and bottles (& strollers) and sleepless nights, it's kind of an enjoyable time. Easier to slow down and enjoy their innocence a little bit more without the complete exhaustion that comes with babies and newborns.

I've even been feeling less like working part-time is really going to be my goal. I want more time with the kids now - like it matters when they are in school all day anyway. Which means I might make an effort to work less the next year or 2 and then ramp it up when the kids are in school and give up on the whole part-time thing. Maybe... I mean if dh returns to work it will be an entirely different beast. But if he is not working, kids in school, my work schedule isn't so bad. I can compile my vacation and take a month off every summer and be home with the kids then if I like. I could come home every afternoon and work while they do homework. At least we can all be home together though - though we will all have our own work to do. It's an idea. I think I would probably be better off doing that and going for more unpaid time than the goal of part-time. I would just lose way too much. If I can vie for more unpaid time insetad, I wouldn't lose all my benefits and perks. Frankly, I don't really mind working full-time. I have had a time of it since LM was born. I think I have felt like I have been missing a lot more with the kids. But with LM sleeping better and getting to the gym and all that I have just been feeling so much better. Work has been going so much better. A good night sleep does make all the difference - it really does. I think with sleep and getting more fit and a clearer brain I am focusing more on how good we have it lately and so feel little need to complain and am rather happy where things are. I have just been on a bitch fest when it has come to work these last few months and I think just the stress and exhaustion. But things are going a lot better. Work is still crazy, but handling it better.

2 Responses to “Tuesday Tidbits”

  1. Broken Arrow Says:

    Love the title! So much better than mine. Big Grin

  2. monkeymama Says:

    Well I thought my tidbits were going to be smaller but I got all wordy. That's what happens when I don't have much time to post for a few days...

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