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Tday +1

November 30th, 2013 at 04:09 am

I hope everybody had a tasty and reasonably low key Thanksgiving. I hosted a small group (3) and all parties were "just in case" potluck people. You have the chips and salsa people who come to a potluck with the minimum; and then you have the 180 degree style - us. There's the dish, and then what if they had no serving spoon so that goes, and then it turns into "just in case", and suddenly you are lugging half of your kitchen. So we had a lot of food for just the three of us. Leftovers for a week!

Last week my drp stock portfolio crossed a milestone. I got a 100% return. Specifically, I put about 26K worth of contributions over the past 10+ years, and now my portfolio is at 53K. Total stock portfolio worth also includes about 6K of reinvested dividends.

So far, I'm still ahead in the death pool pool. Fingers crossed, but somehow December is busy for death.

getting back to routine

January 5th, 2013 at 11:52 pm

Happy Holidays, and best of success in all your fiscal endeavors for 2013.

As for me, I'm getting back into the swing of routine. A different routine - I now can depend on me waking up at 7:45, and getting out the door at about 8:15 - 8:20, to catch any of the three downtown express buses. One (the 522) got me downtown on the 26th in 15 minutes. Man that was nice.

Done with carpet tile, just finished with the major wall painting (painting trim I'm sure is a forever project). I moved 2 full car loads of my stuff at the old place to the new condo, with the last full car load (books) perhaps will happen in the next week or two.

The next 'goal' is get set up enough to host the super Bowl party... first Sunday of February. For that, I'll break down and buy that TV, and get some seating. After that, the fridge and stove work like champs.

I have been doing lots of mini goals with the condo - got all the lighting to work, put post-its on the rooms to remind me what I need to do in them, arranged a charging station to hem in all the electronic crap in one area, am making a pile of stuff to donate/recycle (sometimes its just easier to move it, then donate it), arranged the entry way, monitored when the garbage gets picked up so I can slip a contractors bag of nasty carpet or dried paint waste when the dumpster is empty. Lawyer friend came by with his half full truck and took 15 bags - hard to tell if he will swing around again. He soon will not be a co worker - he's heading for another job at another non-profit. Hopefully we can still keep in touch...if nothing else, he's another dead pool player.

Received a box of organic produce from sister, and I've sent her a Christmas fish in return. Also sent her before and after condo pics.

Our own Spondilucks won the 2012 Dead Pool pool, so I mailed the proceeds to her. She hosted a New Year's Eve soiree which was a whole lot of fun. We had a great time comparing methodologies! Right now the 2013 pool has again 13 players - I might have 2 more and am willing to wait a day or two longer, but after that it becomes not fair to others who got their list in...especially if you are planning on playing Hugo Chavez. Smile

Still holding out on not having Internet at home - what I might do is write posts when I can then publish them one after the other. My net worth took a dip because I put down 20%, but it is still around 600K. The 403B really perked up at the very end - it alone is at 181K.

no kidding

April 2nd, 2012 at 12:16 am

Despite it being April Fools, all of this happened to me:

1. Found a dollar bill in a puddle today, along with a fair amount of additional change. Today's total found money was $1.56, but....

It put my total found after 992 days of tracking and looking at $200.81. Thank you Seattle for being so ... fey about yer money.

2. Bought broccoli for $0.99/lb.

3. Declared my soap nut experiment a success, so I hunted for a dependable bulk supply. Found it at Zenith Supplies for $12/lb. Bought about $10 worth, along with 3 muslin bags. You put about 8 soap nuts into a muslin bag, close the bag, throw the bag in the washer with your clothes. The soap nuts are light, so a bit under a pound of soap nuts is hundreds of soap nut shells, years' worth of laundry.

These things were true. But my favorite April Fools Joke for 2012 was

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guy thanksgiving

February 7th, 2012 at 05:59 am

Hope you all enjoyed it! I was in the grocery store Sunday morning, waiting in line amongst people all getting the same thing - beer, chips, dip, more beer, wings, salsa - when it hit me what I was experiencing:

Guy Thanksgiving.

Think about it. Regular Thanksgiving is some all you can eat Traditional Food with some football; the Super Bowl is Traditional Football with some all you can eat food.

The game seemed meh to me. Word to the wise: don't second guess a touchdown. Score them and be done with it. The ads were even more meh. Only the fat dog getting fit and Clint Eastwood trying to clear his throat using a Chrysler script seemed to rise above.

Visited with the Duvall friends and carted back many of the items they brought over, then, at the end, carted back home many of the things I left over there. One extra thing: they hung my mosaic of their rooster. Looks great! Yay!

from one scam to another

January 14th, 2012 at 05:05 am

It turns out that the twilight zone moment was a practical joke pushed too far by a Customer Service rep. I mentioned it to the Customer Service rep's supervisor to chat with him a bit. The way to have played it was, "yes it was a joke, isn't it funny?" and left it at that. Comedy is a fine line ... and that line is very fluid. When things ease up a bit, he could have played it further but as it is ... show a little restraint.

(Yes, restraint is mighty rich when you are MCing a death bet, but there it is.)

Got home and opened an offer from Chase. If you start a checking account (no doubt with direct deposit), Chase will give you a 200$ gift card. Yippee! Yeah, no.

Collected two more forms for my taxes. W4 and a 1099 from ING.

We are all waiting for snow apparently this weekend. French toast hankerings have begun.

Early Happy New Year

January 1st, 2012 at 06:16 am

I say that because here in Seattle (and in Hollywood) we still have 2 hrs left of 2011. I take my death bet MCing seriously. If someone slides off this mortal coil from Pacific Standard Time zone, I am ready.

Right now I have 7 players for 2012, and that's not even counting several from work, whom I've given next week. My workmates all know the rules and that I'm going to check their picks. It's possible that we can have up to 12-13 players, which makes the winnings very nice.

Best of everything in 2012 to all SA bloggers! The only resolution that I believe in making is to resolve that Jan 1 is just another date. If you need to make a change, no time like the present. Any of the other 364 days will do.

For 2012, I plan to do more mosaics and sell some this year. I've created three with a fourth on the way and given them as gifts to the delight of the recipients. Time to see if the world needs another mosaic artist.

getting ready for 2012

December 29th, 2011 at 04:29 am

Calming down from Christmas - these five days are usually some of my favorites. So quiet, so peaceful, so... not part of the rest of the year or part of any year. These 5 days gave the Romans fits, too. After all, 360 is so ....round.

Any way - I filled out the increase in my 403B contributions. I put in for 17K, and for another 1K of catchup. We'll see for the next three months how it goes.

Cashed in a couple of checks - the Chase credit card cashback, and some Christmas money. With the proceeds, I've bought another round of Target stock. $500, so about 9 shares.

Got my list of celebs for 2012, and it looks like there are going to be 8 or 9 participants this year. Mjrube, where are you? You are ahead for 2011!

Merry Christmas

December 25th, 2011 at 01:12 am

Merry Christmas today and tomorrow - happy holidays in the next few days.

I've been off for a couple of days, and have proceeded to spend more than usual. But I plan on buying some more Target stock - got it going with 9 shares. I also ate more than usual - am holding between 167- 165.

This is the neighborhood good fiscal

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deed that Seattle is talking about. Hopefully your neighborhood has a little something like this!

yeah, gimme friction

December 17th, 2011 at 07:07 am

At the risk of sounding and getting a ton of hits and disappointing the pervs out there, I'm talking about the cashless,

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frictionless spending.

Frugality is all about the friction.

Seems like all of society is out there telling you "make it easy" and get with it, while are all here to say "stop for just a second" and "don't be a spending sheep" and "do you really, really need or want it, upon a few seconds of further consideration?"

Contrast cashless buying with layaway. Primitive, but that less than instant consumerism can give you a
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different way to demonstrate gratitude and compassion.

back again

December 16th, 2011 at 04:22 am

Been away for about a week - except for Christmas spending, not much happening. I got the most difficult gift (to MIL) shipped this afternoon, so phwhew. Had to wait on sending it until today, when I got paid. Felt the frugal burn - I had $20 in checking the night before.

Sister is being sent her fish - she probably got it tonight. The fish is a bit pricey, but if you are going to spend for the next day shipping, might just as well make it pay. She got salmon, lox, crab, trout, and a bit of ling cod. Got a letter from sister and my missing ORCA card. Hah! I knew she had it. (and she was the one who told me not to lose stuff during the trip) I bought another card so now I have two spares. If sister and her partner come out, I'm ready.

The credit card bill will hurt this month, but I don't expect any charges next month, so it will balance out. Cashed in my credit card rewards points $127 or so.

Had an interesting Christmas story from this afternoon. I was in Safeway, perusing the Christmas cards when a guy asked whether there were some funny ones. I pointed out one that was funny and rude. Turns out that the guy was giving the card to a guy in prison - the card I showed him was perfectly rude. Smile

done with the heavy lifting

December 4th, 2011 at 02:35 am

I'm almost done with the deciding about who to give and what to get them for Xmas, and with the exception of one item, I am done with shopping for the hardest recipient: MIL. Since she now has a Nook, I aimed for a couple of BN gift cards hidden in a homemade cheese-based gift basket. Collection phase is over, wrapping, packing and shipping remains.

Noticed that two of my dividend stocks WEC and SYY are raising their dividend. WEC especially is nice - 6 cent per share increase. To cheer me up because stock prices are so volatile, I totaled the dividend payments I would get if I stopped now and decided not to re-invest. $260.

Last night I lost my ATM card at the grocery store. Today I appeared at the credit union, bright eyed and managed to get a new card in about 15 minutes. I'll miss that (the CU at the grocery store is leaving as of Monday). I rarely lose stuff, so it was fortunate I got it all over with. I mentioned their move and the guy who got me the new card told me that they will keep one of the two ATMs, but will remove it as soon as another bank or CU goes into that space.

Finished the first week w/o our boss, who is on maternity leave. One down, twenty five more to go.