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Archive for October, 2006

well that was fun

October 31st, 2006 at 08:32 pm

Went as the trainer today for Halloween. I had a ball and got a lot of compliments. My favorite was the owner of the little deli where I get my cheap coffee: "I didn't know you worked there", and a couple of flirts (can I get some free personal training?). What more can you want from a Halloween costume? My trainer went as a little kid with footie pjs. Didn't matter - she still created a workout that kicked my butt.

I did however spend some money on the costume - black pants and that medium black zippered top. The nice part is that I will be using them as gym clothes or kick-around clothes.

Almost had a nearly no-spend day. I just spent on the coffee and the milk (2$). We had a potluck and that took care of lunch.

real inspiration

October 30th, 2006 at 09:25 pm

Every so often, I read the Millionaires in the Making column on CNN, and I've glanced at the pfblog to see how he's doing.

At first glance, they both depress the hell out of me. Nothing against them, but saving a ton of money when you make a ton of money ain't that hard. I mean the worst problem is the I-make-a-ton-therefore-I'm-brilliant and-I-deserve-it spending that you would have to quell. But really now, saving 25% on a combined salary of 145K still leaves a combined salary of 108K.

Yeah, I think I can live and save on that.

I'd be more impressed if they lived and saved on a combined salary of 60K, which is what DH and I make. And I have saved about 30% of my take home salary. (Not this last year - gym ate that, its about 12%.)

Every so often The Motley Fool trots out an update on their Ordinary People, Extraordinary Wealth column, which usually cheers me up. It just means that I'm going to have to live for a long time. I throw the link out to cheer whomever needs the cheer.

This morning the bus passed by a dark, closed up node of Scottrade, downtown on 3rd & Union. Wonder what happened there?

The gym has come through. The Halloween costume will be spectacularly good.

Counted a lot of money and pledges today at a company. Tomorrow our department has work!

oops, forgot, bibimbap

October 29th, 2006 at 05:19 pm

Bibimbap: Korean dish. Over a bowl of rice, lay a few ounces of meat grilled with garlic and chili (beef, chicken, seafood, tofu), and an ounce or so each of little piles of: shredded carrot, shredded radish, kimchi, shredded cucumber, mung or soybean sprouts, sauteed mushrooms, cooked spinach, with hot sauce on top. If you spring for the more authentic egg on top, you get an egg sunny side on top, above the hot sauce. The idea is that you mix this all together, and especially mix the egg, so that the yolk soaks into the hot rice and cooks a bit more.

I've been noticing a lot more places to get bibimbap around here in Seattle. It seems like this dish is going to be like pho was 20 years ago - adopted and co-opted. Already notice this - you have to tell them if you want kimchi, which is a shame.

1.47 left this month

October 29th, 2006 at 05:05 pm

That is, if the chiropractor cashes the check as soon as he gets it, and with the new banking rules about floats (there are none) you've got to assume it. Its as close to zero balance checking as I care to come. I did put 300$ in savings so I wasn't at the edge of my budget and I have 30$ in my wallet, so I can easily survive tomorrow and Tuesday's payday.

I just got caught up in spending this month. Sigh.

My gym will come through with the rest of my costume Monday, but I did get a black long sleeved top just in case (if you get it, they will; if you don't prepare, they won't). Lately large in tops and sweaters is loose, so I gambled and won: its a medium and it fits! I also got a new medium sports bra. Tight like the large bra used to be, so I have to consider it a goal. (41.91$)

Yesterday DH picked up a buffalo chuck, so we had buffalo pot roast last night. (Montana roots, I think.) Frugal for me because DH sprung for it, but at 3.99$/lb not particularly frugal for him. Haven't seen any fantastic deals in the grocery stores here right now. November's around the corner and around here that's the time chicken stock goes for 78 cents/can.

Made stuffed grape leaves for the potluck on Tuesday. Picked up ground lamb last week at $2.99/lb. Again not really all that frugal, but for stuffing grape leaves lamb is the easiest and the most authentic.

Yesterday DH and I were watching the little trick-er-treaters on Greenwood Ave Saturday afternoon. Like a lot of other places, Halloween has undergone a shift. I picked up a bag of candy in case we get a couple of traditionalists (or teenagers), but I really don't think that many little kids trick or treat on a week night anymore. Too dangerous, too little return.

It was a blast watching all the little tykes dressed as frogs, queens, Star Wars characters (to the Darth Vader with the plait hanging down the back - you go girl!), superheroes, t-rexs, princesses, sports stars, playing cards, monkeys...its a great irony that we adults allow our children to be creative but as adults - and adult women especially - costumes are narrowly defined, generally on the wench line. Its like we say to kids be anything to have fun, but to an adult be sexual to have fun.

mmm, that's good bass

October 26th, 2006 at 10:29 pm

If you laughed, that dates you!

Got the new headphones in the mail tonight. Okay, they are only 3X more expensive than ear clips and ear buds that I've cheaped out on, but they sound many times better, they fold up with a little bag, they deaden other sounds (not so good when I'm playing in traffic), they won't fall off my head and are they're more comfy.

And the bass is fantastic. At least from a woman's amateur perspective. Smile

Spent again the usual 2$ on coffee and nofat milk, 7$ on bibimbap (I sprung for an egg on top for an extra 1$).

Got weighted and measured at the gym. Didn't lose any weight, so at 193. I'm at the back end of my cycle, so not gaining is a win, if you know what I mean. I did lose a bit more on the inches.

We totalled the inches from all body parts since November. I now have two waist measurements - the narrowest part (I have an empress waist) and at my belly button - so depending on which waist measurement you take, I've either lost an amazing 16 inches or a freaking amazing 18.5 inches.

I'm going for density. I'm going to be the densest woman I know. Smile

Finally, a little more about the real me. I'm not really a professional poet, but I did manage to sell a few here, here and here. I threw the links out because the sentences underneath the poems are accurate, so you can get a bit of info about me on the sly. Sister, in addition to holding down the farm, does pottery, photography, and makes soap in Milwaukee. Another fun fact: we don't look alike or act alike or handle money alike (clearly) but we do sound alike. Exactly alike. Freakishly alike in tone, timber, and accent. Like a right and left speaker.

Back to finances next time.

Came clean

October 25th, 2006 at 08:24 pm

...with the usual foursome, today five-some at lunch. (lawyer friend, lawyer friend's partner, screenwriter friend, a friend co-worker with serious Finnish family roots - so finnish friend).

At the end of lunch lawyer friend said to me, "you write, why haven't you started a blog yet?"

I shot back, "I've been blogging for over a year. Where have you been?"

Both lawyer friend and lawyer's friend's partner made a little blog earlier in the year, based on fixing up a house in Hoquiam. I reminded them that it takes a lot of endurance to blog consistently. There are days when its hard to come up with meaningful things to write about.

"Yeah, and you just never know whether people are reading or not."

I told them that I didn't have that problem. Smile

This fall, last fall

October 24th, 2006 at 09:14 pm

Added a little bit more to the tip box, so I put 50$ in the bank.

Spent 2$ for the coffee and the nofat milk and 4.50$ for curry lunch.

Nothing much else on any financial front. We're supposed to be converting from Sick/ Vacation/ Catastrophic to PTO at work by January 1.

Gym today, the trainer turned the dome upside down and I could stand, balance on it for 1 minute.

This fall is different than last fall for two reasons: no titanic flocks of starlings in the trees (yet), and now Seattle traffic is so bad that a little rain causes a titanic traffic jam. Its now faster to walk out of downtown than it is to take the bus. I'd rather have the starlings.

Spendy, but constructive spendy

October 23rd, 2006 at 08:26 pm

Savings log -

Put 6$ in the tip box - I have 46$ in total, enough to put in the bank.

Thank you Lucky Robin! I couldn't have given my last ING invite to a nicer person. Enjoy - and remember you've got your own invites to sell. 10$

All my stocks went up. Amazing and scary, so its time to stop monitoring now. Smile

Spending log -
Last day of the Sur La Table 20% friends and family sale (DH currently works there) - picked up a small wisk, tongs with hard silicone so I can use them on a non-stick pan, a universal lid, poultry seamer (corkscrew thingee that I can use to stitch up a turkey), clip to allow me to rest a spoon over a pot, a coarse microplaner, 2 silicone circles that can be used as a lid, trivet, or sealer for a pan or a bowl. In other words, bought only the utensils that I needed or wished I had a second of. 69$

Lunch at the hideout - 6$.

New headphones for the MP3 player. Everything cheapo (10$-20$) that I've tried has at least two strikes: doesn't have good sound, hurts my ears, falls off my ears, the wires catch on my clothing, or the wires wad up in a ball so that they fly out of my purse when I try to retrieve my keys. Grrr. Supposedly these headphones have good sound, fold up, and while they rest on my head like a regular headphone would, I'm willing to risk the bad hair. 51$. In this case, the cheapest man pays the most.

Checked to see how much I owed the chiropractor. Quite surprised to find that it was only 50.56$; will pay it next week to get caught up.

So spendy, but constructive spendy.

We got a new temporary auditor at work, and very soon we will be in the thick of it. It feels like it would before a great battle. Tension mounting, no birds chirping, no sound at all, everybody busy getting their last little things done while we can before the big piles hit.

Sister emailed and asked me what I thought of the letter. I told her that will work out well for her, not so nice for me to share the deed to the property because I'm 2,000 miles away. I was going to say that I hope she won't take it the wrong way, but its the truth.

Doesn't look good

October 21st, 2006 at 06:07 pm

for the fortune cookie fortune. Got a letter from the executors today about the second piece of property that we are trying to sell to the Wisconsin DNR. It appears that the appraisal process is stuck on someone's desk, and that it takes a 12 member panel's approval to make an offer.

Since the executors are now on a deadline to settle the estate (January 2007), sister's lawyer has petitioned for an extension (March 2007), and the thought now is to split the money from the assets already sold and to jointly deed to us the second property to sell or do with as we will.

Sister will be bugged again for some unknown reason - it means that the executors will be backing out. (I can hear it now from her - they're idiots, they're incompetent, why did we allow this...blah blah blah.) I'm not thrilled, but its because I'm too far away to be a decent property owner.

Thursday and Friday

October 20th, 2006 at 08:00 pm

Thursday -
2$ in the tip box
7.70$ earned from T-bills this week, sent to ING.

Had breakfast coffee at a morning meeting, so only spent for a bibimbap lunch (6.50$).

The timeline firmed up for the first large quantity of pledges and money for this year - a week from now Monday.

Generally I try to make a week's worth of prepared food on Saturday and Sunday, but Thursday night I made the fixin's of lentil soup. DH fetched some carrots and more lentils (3$).


Friday -
8$ in the tip box (40$ total for the month)

I felt like a rich woman, so I splurged and spent on chirashi for lunch (11$) in addition for the for black coffee + no fat milk (2$)

It was a good day for my DRP stocks - KO went up $1.80/share; MMM went up $2.07. I write it now to cheer me up should they drop just as steeply. 3/4 of my stocks are close to their 52 week highs, only MMM is at its midpoint, bouncing back from its dip.

Put 300$ in a surprising place - in my PayPal account. Its paying at 5.02%.

Put out some small fires at work today. I feel bad about giving my helper a totally boring icky data job, but its important and it will help us... a lot.

Walked home from 15th Ave NW, 7 blocks further than I normally do - I have been doing off and on these past two months, but I figure this will be one of the last times this year. We go back to regular time either this weekend or next, which means walking in the dark.

Nearly a no-spend day

October 18th, 2006 at 09:08 pm

In a sense, it was a perfectly balanced day:
Saving - Put $2 in the tip box.
Spending - 2$ for coffee and 1/2 pint of no fat milk.

My lunch got bought today; time to call in the favors.

Put a healthy slug of nofat milk in my coffee and mixed protein powder with the rest. The trainer was right - consider it like cocoa and that will give you ideas what to mix it with. Also had about an hour after I woke up which helped; slugging anything down immediately upon waking up causes a very strong gag reflex. Its a family thing - my mom used to say, "I'll have this by the sink because that's where its going to end up."

Got word today that we'll be getting the first big batch of work in this season at about the same time as we did last year - end of October, beginning of November. Turning on a dime.

Compliment

October 17th, 2006 at 08:12 pm

$4 in the tip box

Had a small glass full of water/protein powder. This is going to be hard to take. The trainer suggested that lowfat and nofat milk will help...if I really wanted to give it a chance. Smile

Had a quickie lunch with the lawyer friend ($7), told him no movement on the bid of the second piece of land--the fortune cookie prediction is holding, and since sister is currently in Maine, I'm glad.

DJ friend/co worker got a compliment for me - he's been asking for and getting new remixes and product from other DJs. One DJ specifically emailed my friend that he submitted his on the basis of my friend's bio. "Well, if you want her to do yours, I'll hook you up." was what he said. Smile

Keeping my assistant busy. One or two new people are coming on - and a shortage of work. It will change; this year I predict it will turn on a dime.

Freebie

October 16th, 2006 at 10:15 pm

So the chiropractor said that he had something for me--
A bill? I joked.

A lot of protein powder. Free meal replacement powder to mix in water or a drink. As a woman, it doesn't excite me as much as, say, a fur would but it is the thought that counts. And my thought is that sweet snacks are easy to come by, but protein ones are not. Not to mention it does free me up to not have to think of the second lunch. I can drink the second lunch for free. So girly loss but frugal win.

I thanked him, tried some this evening, and split the powder between work and home.

Went to Uwajimaya for lunch today ($5.40). They're having the 10% off everything sale, and it is getting cold, clammy and gray, so I picked up the wakame and clear soup packs. ($6.08) Come January, amongst the piles and piles of paper, something soothing to drink will come in handy.

Got the new passport back. Positively charming and informative - I can see why I get protein powder instead a fur. Smile

Caught up on the credit card bill, so it was only 78$ this month. An even nicer feeling than saving money is not being beholden.

devil mother

October 15th, 2006 at 03:40 pm

For Friday, Saturday, Sunday...

Friday - put another 4$ in the tip box, but not much of any financial note happened.

Saturday - Denny's again, because the last time it was fairly quiet, and Denny's was strategically located for errand and later visiting friends out in Duvall, WA.

This time it was not quiet and it was all I could do to keep my tongue firmly in my mouth, because if I didn't there was going to be a hair pulling catfight going on.

Behind me sat a large party. Not a problem.
Right behind me, inches away (we were all in booths) was a young mother with a 4-6 month old baby. Baby was fussing loudly. Still actually not a problem, or at least a problem that I cut slack on.
Young mother sanctimonous about being able to stay at home with baby. Okay, now we are getting into problem because yer baby's behavior is not giving you any brownie points to be sanctimonous about.

And yet I was reading my Wall Street Journal weekend (EFT section was interesting), eating my meal because if I stopped chewing and working my mouth, hell was going to break loose.

And then she began a critique of all of the local casinos out of town. The dealers, the atmosphere, her husband's techniques, the table games, the bars, the buffets. I mean I'm hearing about late nights/early mornings from every freakin' casino - Tulalip, Emerald Queen, Angel of the Winds, and other ones that I care nothing about.

Too bad I didn't catch her name because I was looking forward to hearing about devil mother and devil spawn's financial doings in about 15 years. If only I had DSHS (Department of Social and Health Services) on speed dial.

Anyhow - we were invited to a couple's house in Duvall. We were the first guests there and we hadn't seen them for more than a few minutes since February, so I sprung for housewarming food stuffs ($21.77). Duvall was a straight shot, and we had a blast visiting. Totally made me forget about devil mother.

Sunday - picked up two more long sleeved tops. ($6.08) Now the larges are starting to get loose, although not loose enough to encourage me to try a medium.

Am at the stage where I'm tossing out the really worn, size tent stuff. Threw out a pair of pants with again the hole in the crotch and thin spots in the hiney.

plans coming together

October 12th, 2006 at 08:31 pm

The 24K got into Vanguard today.
Put 4$ in the tip box.

Saw .06 on the gym carpet. It took all of the fortitude I had to not run over and put in my pocket. I'm positively embarrassed to mention it here. The trainer's boss loved the idea of my Halloween costume, so they'll get the top and a spare name tag that I can mock up with a label maker. Heh heh heh. This will be the cheapest costume I've come up with in a long, long time.

Lost two more pounds in the last two weeks or so. With any luck by Halloween I'll be under 190 lbs.

pretty dull for my 301 entry

October 11th, 2006 at 08:58 pm

Another of the temp staff brought a whole jar of fortune cookies. Mine:

"Someone today needs your help."

Put 9$ in the tip box. For the readers who need reminding, I have a tip box at work that I periodically put ones (many ones sometimes) and change inside. Sometimes I make reverse change. Every month or so I take what's inside and put it in my bank three blocks away. Drippings from the tip box runs about 40-50$/month in savings.

I gave the okay for Vanguard to move the 24K now in ING. It hasn't gone yet, but the since the money is making good daily money at ING, that takes that sting out.

I let people help me out today, and got a lot of work done.

Lotsa mail

October 10th, 2006 at 08:38 pm

2 Drp optional cash purchase slips, insurance invoice (regarding the chiropractor), light bill, a Schedule K-1 from dad's estate. No taxes owed.

I have to tell you that my heart gave a little jump when I saw the letter from the executors - I thought that the bid from the second property came in (early) and I would have to eat crow from my sister. I'm pretty sure that the bid would come in in late October - November.

Light bill was 61.67, a bit smaller than last year

Wrote a 35$ check to one drip, 40$ to another.

Watershed moment at work today, which was again crazy. On my white board I wrote the best advice I ever received about my job:

"No one dies if it doesn't get done today."

Don't get my wrong. I work hard and I'm sprightly about my timelines. Its just that if you let your co workers jerk you around, well, I can get jerked around very, very hard. The things that have to get done "today" usually mean that you are helping someone else get their work done "today". Have got to prevent that!

Gym: Held a plank position (very tough on the side abs) for 50 sec. Twice. Last night I came up with an excellent idea for a Halloween costume, which I ran by my trainer. I would go as a trainer. They have a specific uniform, and I asked her whether it would be possible to borrow a top. She laughed and thought it was a fun idea - bonus points for the self referential aspect of it - and for another irony. Halloween falls on a training session, so I would have to remove my trainer costume and put on my gym clothes to train, then put the trainer costume back on. The only snag in this is that tops are hard to come by. I'll have to think about the name tag, too.

Choices

October 9th, 2006 at 10:27 pm

So at the foursome lunch (16.50$ - one of us had a birthday so the other three bought) today, conversation turned to my new bed, the sleep number part, and the adjustable foundation part. Then it turned to how much it cost. I told them and the other three blanched, looked stricken like they were suffering from heartburn. Choices, guys. I don't have a car (which I still really don't need), and I rent. But I like to get 7-8 hours of sleep, which is going to happen to be a 1/3 of my life.

Planned the move of the 24K out of ING to Vanguard. Since it is a taxable account, and not part of an IRA, it should be tax and fee efficient, without a lot of trading. I picked the S & P 500 (VINFX) index fund, with the capital gains and the dividends reinvested. If I remember right, stocks get bought and sold at the end of the quarter - aka the "witching" hour - so the index matches the market. In other words, nothing's bought continuously.

Talked a little more to co worker/ DJ about what I would be writing on the internet radio station. We apparently have 4-6 weeks or so. He plans to switch things on when everything's ready, a luxury that maybe a regular radio station doesn't have. My assistant has been cranking along. Soon I'm going to have the opposite problem - keeping her busy.

Been walking home from 15th Ave NW about 80% of the time now, but since its getting dark more quickly, that'll soon change because I really don't want to be walking that long and far after dark. Another choice. The chiropractor suggested going back to the gym 3x/week, rather than just 2x.

Tower Records

October 8th, 2006 at 07:46 pm

Hit two and a half spots today -

Office Depot for CD clam shells, microfiber wipe for electronic screens, and a plastic storage box - $19.93. Two of these were 3M products, so I expect a penny or two of earnings from my 3M stock. Hah hah.

Next was Tower Records, which declared bankrupcy yesterday. Picked and pawed but I did find 2 CDs and a DVD that I wanted - $57.70. G*d, first Larry's Market and now this. I feel a bit like a shopping vulture, and mentioned it to the cashier. She told me she felt devastated herself, they got the word so quick.

The half spot was a pitstop for bubble tea. (3$) I'm not a Coke (or any other Cola) fiend, thankfully. But if researchers find problems with bubble tea, I'm screwed. Smile

fortune cookie

October 7th, 2006 at 07:33 pm

Saturday morning, DH and I mixed it up and had dim sum at the Hakka Chinese place. (25$) Good, but not celestial. Anyway, this is what I got in my fortune cookie--

"Next month will be your most profitable month of the year."

I'm taking that as a sign that there will be movement on the second property.

I've always gotten great fortune cookie fortunes, no matter the situation. Eating by myself, eating in large parties where you pick the cookie that points to you. I've never gotten confusing ones, or evil ones, and I never needed the "in bed" phrase to make one of those slips entertaining. One of those karmic quirks, I guess.

Bought a couple of months worth of canned cat food for my now-19 year old cat. 23$. We used the self-checkout line; the checkout voice noting "cat food" drove DH insane. And yet I must be even more optimistic this year than last.

72$ for groceries - I bought a cartload this time, and we also got meat and cold medicine which always hikes things up a bit. There was a great deal on frozen corn, peas, and green beans - .78/lb.

Last night I got out of the bath and as I ran through the skin care ritual (slapping on a fair amount of body lotion), I took a look at myself in the mirror.

Actual, genuine booty.

It was a bit like seeing an old friend at a college reunion, aged a tad from celluite, but you could see the resemblance and "she" brought back great memories.

Yawn.

October 6th, 2006 at 11:24 pm

Put 5$ in the tip box.

Bought a coffee in the old, a bit more expensive spot (1.75$) because it was on my way. Bought a bowl of pho for lunch (7$ including tip). DH read my mind and bought dinner - shrimp fried rice for me, from a carryout teriyaki place that has massive portions. I showed some self control and ate half.

Not much happened today, it was all the usual craziness. I can't even think of a good rant.

naive, but what the hey

October 5th, 2006 at 10:02 pm

Gym class: the trainer demonstrated and asked me to lie down and chest press an iron bar. I could do it, but after about few repetitions I asked how heavy it was. "Two more reps, and I'll tell you", she said.

It was 45 pounds.

Before lunch, my DJ coworker/friend (whom I wrote his bio and who discovered this blog) asked me if I would write more content for his startup Internet radio station. I'm excited about this as I agreed that I would, but boy, oh boy, I have noooo idea what to charge, what favors to ask, or even what I got myself into.

As I was walking home, I realized a deep irony. During the day, he works for me; at night, I'm going to be working for him.

The 24K finally made it into ING, the 6K for the bed/trainer made it as a payment on the credit card. According to my checking account, I'm newly poor and naive again.

Once in a while

October 4th, 2006 at 11:46 pm

$4 in the tip box.

Still crazy at work, but at least the water feels like its at my chin rather than just under my nose. I got two little hershey bars yesterday in a mysterious way; it turned out I had helped one of the temp staff and in gratitude she had left the candy bars...but then her co worker said, "Why did you do that? She just dropped two dress sizes!"

Trust me, in a day or two of sustained craziness I'll be thankful that I can self medicate under the desk. Smile

It leads me to my rant - once in awhile. You've got the routine and then you have the special purchases and treats to keep you on routine. I've got to keep track of those once in awhiles. If it was like the cheeseburger last Friday, after 10 months that was a good once in awhile. Perhaps it was a little long once in awhile, but that made it even better.

Its the once in awhiles that are actually once a week that will kill ya. Worst, if you have many once in awhile treats that you kind of mix it up with to keep the rewards fresh, you can make a once in awhile treat come up every few days.

Somehow, if once in awhile turns out to once every couple of months (8-12 weeks) that seems to work well for me. And then multiple treats should come up once a month or so.

waiting for it

October 3rd, 2006 at 08:30 pm

Not much on any economic front. But the 75$ front of the month pay yourself first payment made it into savings. Just waiting for over 24K to get sucked into ING...seems to be taking days longer than my other deposits. Guess ING is trying to figure out whether this deposit is a joke or not.

Several co workers today and several yesterday joked how "I'm just wasting away." Why is everyone noticing now? Another co worker even told me that she joined because of me..she saw me head out 2-3x week every week for months.

My trainer told me that if I get ahold of them first to tell them to tell the gym that they joined because of me, for every four people that come in like that, she will give me a freebie training session. My balance and my form and even my endurance during the exercises seem to be improving geometically now.

I'm hip-deep in crazy at work. The number of questions and advice is picking up, and the money itself for our non-profit is starting to roll in.

Helper

October 2nd, 2006 at 08:42 pm

Sunday: went to the Greek Festival for a hit and run. Didn't sense that DH was in the spirit of the thing, so I went alone. Bought a 2$ raffle to go to Lost Wages (Vegas), olive oil, feta cheese, olives, taramosalata, braided butter cookies = 42$ (mostly due to the olive oil).

At the grocery store, found a very good unadvertised deal on lamb neck @ 1.49$/lb. Lamb stew!


Monday: Put 4$ in the tip box.

Now that I've gotten busier, I have an assistant. New and exciting and scary because I'm a serious control freak and find it difficult to delegate...not to mention as a practical matter that with the buses, I'm finding it very hard to get to work before 8:30am to supervise. It was her first day and we got her up and running and trained a bit. Tomorrow I'll put her to some of her basic tasks.

She generally brings her lunch, but didn't today because she wasn't sure of the facilities we had and the lunch rules. Bought her first lunch along with mine - 23$. There's frugal, and then there's nice.