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Cleaning, Totals, and Re-thinking.

May 6th, 2006 at 10:21 am


"Who let minnie mouse out in this weather?" Here is my daughter showing off her Disney world paraphernalia: ears (14.00), umbrella (12.00), wide grin of appreciation for going on vacation during Easter break (priceless).

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"Re-thinking"
Budget base for May '06:
One can learn soo much about life by reading other people's blogs. After reading a few pfblogs this morning, I feel fiscally ready to map out the upcoming spend budget for this month. I've got several occasions to shop for and I need to establish an acceptable spend amount BEFORE I hit the stores (much like food shopping- never go to the store hungry or armed with a heavy wallet!!). It'll be a toughie considering the events specified:

Mother's Day:
Mom, Grandma, MIL

Birthday:
Mom (turns 65 this year), Dad

Communion:
Daughter

Retirement:
Professor K. (41 years of service)

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Had this been 2004 or earlier, my credit card debt would immediately swell up under multiple, overly generous spends as these are all noteworthy occasions (justified expense). SavingAdvice helped me kick this habit early last year to stop the madness in its tracks and save CASH for splurges. Cash is alot harder to part with- ESPECIALLY when you start accruing a nice stack of twenties.

I am considering creating a few care packages for Mom's Day and gift cards for birthdays. My mom isn't into big parties so I am considering signing her up for craft membership at our local A.C. Moore. Hmmm...

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"Saving"
Tips from the maid:

My maid-neighbor has serviced homes of several rich New Yorkers and known celebrities like Steve Martin and Amy Irving. I like to invite her over for coffee so I can wrestle some decor tips and cleaning product scoop. Her latest set of tips includes a warning on the Dyson Vacuum/Roomba product lines and plugs on the following housecleaning necessities: microfiber cloths, vinegar, and Fantastic with Bleach.

Vacuums- The Dyson vacuum will rip your carpet fibers to shreds as the suction is too strong for non-commercial flooring. One of her clients bought the purple dyson and is now trying to sell it on Ebay after it destroyed her persian rugs. I'll stick with my dirt devil then!

Microfiber cloths- These cloths will pick up dust without having to use any cleaning solutions. Her tip- after cleaning the surfaces (mirrors, counters etc.), dab a little chamomile or lavender water onto the cloth and wipe down one last time. Wiping down light bulbs with the scented cloth will warm the scent enough to fill the room whenever the light is turned on.

Vinegar- She swears by this as the only alternative to clean tile floors. Instead of using beaucoup amounts of clorox clean-up or pine-sol, Miss Maid uses vinegar and water to combat dirt and grime. She then uses diluted lavender scented cleansers to finish the job (yes, she loves lavender!).

Fantastic with Bleach- Though a little more expensive than I care to admit, this stuff makes for easy cleaning without that choking clorox smell. She uses this to disinfect the bathrooms and kitchen sink. I managed to buy two bottles for five bucks at Stop and Shop (my new favorite grocery store)

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"Totals"
It's officially been one year and a few months since I started my envelope methods to save money by quitting bad habits and saving on bills by cutting down. From March to November 2005, I managed to save $4000 which I put into a short term CD. The CD has since matured and I have some more money in envelopes to add along for my next 7 month deposit. How much have I accumulated from March to March alone?

$8,763.12

That is more than half of my student loans. That is enough to take my kids on a posh vacation in the Caribbean. 8 grand. I am a happy camper. The irony about this cash is- 100% of this is money I gave freely to the following companies:

Phillip Morris, Con Edison, Visa, Brooklyn Union Gas, Cablevision, several Atlantic City casinos, New York Times subscription service AND... the nail salon.

How's that for a refund? Smile

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CHANGEPOT UPDATE:

Here is yesterday's entry at my blog, The Changepot 2006 ]. I am officially over $70.00!!! YAYYY!! Thanks to all the folks who graciously drop coins- know that your coinage is safe with me heheh.

....
Friday, Cinco De Mayo, 06':

A couple of days ago, I posted that I had reached close to $70.00 in found money. Last night, I realized I was way off ($1.17) and felt a bit bummed. What I'd failed to realize is that I had amassed a collection of recyclable cans ($1.10 worth). That-along with today's totals has put me into the first of several changepot goals ($70, $100, $150.00+). The reason I chose $70.00 is because when I started the change questing, I had just spent that amount on one book for school. I paid it with my own hard earned cash (mannn it stung!)

BUT IT'S HERE.

And the sun is shining today.

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CHANGEPOT UPDATE:
Today we found $1.35 in the form of two quarters, five dimes, two nickels and twenty five pennies. We also cashed in twenty two recyclable cans for a total of $1.10 (One dollar and one dime) . Altogether our total for the day was $2.45- taking our totals well over $70.00! There is nothing sweeter than seeing progress in effect!!!!

The best find was in the middle of an INSANE intersection here on the Island. Hubby parked the vehicle on the side and retrieved forty cents without batting an eyelash. I love this race. That's all for today as I have a BIG DAY tomorrow. I'll be sure to post about it Smile
Mucho luvvvv
Change Statistics:

Dollars: Tens (1) = 10.00
Ones (13) = 13.00

Quarters: (85) = 21.25
Dimes: (166) = 16.60
Nickels: ( 72) = 3.60
Pennies: (683) = 6.83
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Total units: (1020) = $71.28


Total Cash found and redeemed today: $2.45
Total Since Blog Inception: $71.28