Friday, October 26, 2012


Only 5 more days until Halloween which means only 5 more days until I get my next pay and hence my next debt installment!  I'm starting to really enjoy this process.  I'm just over 3 months away from being debt free, which is extremely exciting!  Just 3 months.  Oh how I can't wait until these 3 months are up!!!

I haven't been posting much in October because of some internet connection issues.  I had a laptop that was funded by work that I had to return so I'm on an old laptop right now that doesn't have as much flexibility.  I'm starting to become accustomed to it though so things are working quite well on that end.  I'm very happy I didn't decide to buy a new laptop and hault my debt destruction plan.

Today's Debt Defeating Accomplishment(s):

  • Eating out cheaply when others didn't want to.
  • Buying fruit as a dessert at work

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Losing my Laptop

I'm in quite a bind and I'm not sure how to deal with the situation.  I have a laptop that I've been using that was subsidized and now needs to be returned.  It's a rather expensive laptop, and I'm quite hesitant to pay for a new one cash, so it looks like I'll be without a similar model for a while.

This will be a real test for me.  Much of my day, both work and entertainment, is spent on my laptop.  I think I'll likely go through a withdrawal period and I'm not exactly sure what I'll do with the newly found time, but I presume given where I live that I'll become much more active and relish in the outdoors.  However, this might tempt me to spend more, as I'll be out in society more.

So what to do?  Well, I actually think the solution is to kick up my reading addiction!  I love reading, and find it to be a very soothing form of entertainment.  It's a great way to feel like you're talking to an expert in a particular field instead of getting opinions or information from an uninformed dear friend.

I'm looking forward to the transition despite my inner hesitations!

Today's Debt Defeating Accomplishments:

  • Resisting buying a new laptop
  • Going to the library to pick up books: Free Entertainment!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Shift Adjustment

This month I decided to allot more money toward groceries than I have in the past, and less toward entertainment/restaurants.  I've found that I still have quite a bit of grocery money and not much entertainment/restaurant money by mid-month.  This leads me to believe that it's time to go shopping for a bunch of food.

I think such a shopping trip would deter me from wanting to eat out in the first place, and would probably get me to eat at home even more than I already do, or at least, entertain at home a lot more.  Maybe it'd be a good idea to hold a small potluck/get together!

Today's Debt Defeating Accomplishments:

  • Eating out cheaply.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Low Expenditure October

I've barely spent money in October.  Even with a pretty strict budget I've generally not spent much money at all.  Besides groceries, so far I've ate out once, and spent about $10 on transportation, plus an extra $10 today for a board game event and lunch at the event.

It's amazing how I'm not overly affected by this either.  I've been cooking up a storm at home and consequently eating most of my meals during the week for "free".  Work provides fresh clean water and tea/coffee (which I rarely use).  Otherwise, I've been relaxing and enjoying my time doing fun activities that don't require much spending but are still fulfilling.  This includes things like going to the park, going for a walk, hiking, playing sports, etc.  Active, fun lifestyle while saving lots of $$$.  I love it!

Today's Debt Defeating Accomplishments:

  • Avoiding eating out, and hence saving!

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Pride: A Debt Defeater

Today, I'm very proud of myself.  I looked at my debt, and it totals $7126.26.  When I started out, my debt total was over $30,000.  WOW.  I've accomplished so much, and I'm very proud of it.  I only have a couple of months to go to beat this thing out and then it's DONE.

Sometimes I think it takes a lot of effort to do this, but honestly I live quite well within the income that I have.  I've never been a huge consumer so I have no problem not spending much on things.  I love cooking at home, and stopped drinking so that has been a huge help toward saving.

I can't wait until it's over....over for good!  GO ME!!

Take A Year Off?

Thus far, living under the budget that I've made has not made a dent to my personal well being all that much.  So, I was thinking, what if I saved this aggressively even after I paid off my debts?  If that were the case, let's do some calculations.

I could save about an $1500/month and still have plenty of room with the remaining budget.  My first non-debt month would be February at the latest, and my current contract job ends September 2014.  Thus, I'd save $1500/month for 19 months, leaving me with $28,500.

That's a good chunk of change!  This would not include any extra money I made from my business or other related savings.  I could use this to start toward a down payment on a condo wherever I move (if I don't stay in California, of course), or use it to do some other very interesting things.

I'm very pumped about this idea!  I think I could easily live on $28,500 for a year as well.  So if push comes to shove, here's to a potential year off!

Friday, October 5, 2012

The Power of No Alcohol

I did a little experiment to see how much money I would have spent this week if I was drinking alcohol.  Here are a few events that arose and the amount I would have spent:

  1. Tuesday:  Friend invited me to his birthday bash, last minute, at a bar.  Drinks would have been about $10-$15 for me, and of course a special drink for the birthday boy would have added another $10.
  2. Thursday:  Friend invited me to his going away party (he's only going away for 2 weeks!)  Beers at a relatively expensive place could have easily run up $20.

So just in this week I saved on the order of $30-$35 by not drinking.  Not too shabby!

Today's Debt Defeating Accomplishments:

  • Not drinking; a great way to defeat financial and health debt!

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

I Ate Out!

I haven't eaten at a restaurant since my birthday, so this was exciting!  I went to a local place that had Mediterranean food.  I had always wanted to try it out, but I've been cooking at home very consistently so I always had lots of food.  Now that I'm done with drinking, I figure it would be okay to spend a bit of money on a tasty meal.

And boy it was!  Servings were quite large: a very meaty gyros sandwich with all the fixings, and a HUGE plate of herb and spiced fries, only for $7.50 (taxes included).  This was not a sit-in restaurant so no tipping on top of that.  Since I don't eat out too often, I made sure to enjoy the experience fully.  I took a book from the public library and sat down for a leisurely read while eating the meal.

All in all, great place.  I'll be back in the (not too near) future!

Today's Debt Defeating Accomplishments:

  • Eating out, on not too much $

No Drinking: A Debt Defeater

I've made the decision to stop drinking until my debt is paid off (at least).

I noticed that the bulk of my entertainment expenditures came from drinking at bars, and after my ridiculous expenditures last Saturday night, I told myself I've had enough.  There's only so much one should be spending on these things, and they don't bring any value health wise, so I've pretty much had enough.

I'm down to a total of about $500 of expenditures for October, minus rent and phone.  That's excellent! I can't wait until my checks clear to see how much debt I have left.


Monday, October 1, 2012

First response!

Today I got my first response for my business!  This is exciting.  A new client may lie ahead in the near future.  I'm extremely excited about picking this up.

The tricky part now is evaluating what rate to charge at.  I value myself highly in my expertise so I plan to charge quite a lot compared to the competitors out there.  I hope this works out!