April 6, 2012

Mixing It Up!

Filed under: budgets,debt,money — by elysianconfusion @ 1:19 pm
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We are getting crazy over here… hopefully that will move all this payoff ahead more quickly. First of all, we got our ARM adjustment letter again, and it went from 3.00% to …. (drumroll) 3.00%. Our payment officially goes down, but we’ll just keep paying the same (maybe that’ll help if/when it ever adjusts upwards). Right now I’m not sure we have the equity (vile market) or it’s worth the fees involved to refinance. I’m pretty sure we don’t have an option anyway!

So, one thing I’d been resistant to was moving credit card debt to our home equity line or moving credit card debt to another card. I feel like in the past we’ve done that and, well, you can see where it got us. Nowhere. But … taking recent behavior into account, and believing we’re truly reformed, I’m trying again. So – I moved my Upromise to the home equity line. Then of course they offered me a 0% on their (now balance free) card – so I moved the Citibank to the 0% – good through February 2013 – by which time it should be completely paid off.

New table:


Debt Amount Rate Month Paid Off
Visa $0 8.5% February 2011
Bank of America $0 9.9% February 2012
Upromise $10,886.13 0% December 2012
Citi $0 9.15% April 2012
Car #1 $0 4.7% March 2012
Car #2 $4417.30 2.9% May 2013
Home Equity Variable $11,351.26 4.0% June 2013
Home Equity Fixed #71,487.05 3.99% October 2015
Student Loan $17,226.39 2.9% January 2014
Mortgage $181,395.50 3.0% March 2019

So, maybe it doesn’t change the final dates, but it does save interest. And the less I pay to Citi & Bank of America, the better – right?


April 15, 2010

After a year…

Filed under: budgets,children,debt,money — by elysianconfusion @ 12:14 pm
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We started this journey in April 2009, so it’s now been a year.

April 20, 2009: 403,438.14
April 15, 2010:  $367,664.68

So, we’ve paid down $35,773.46 in a year, which is not bad, I guess. It’s down only $1,814.63 from last month, and honestly, I’m feeling pretty discouraged.

We’ve had a lot going on lately and haven’t been able to sell anything on Craigslist. I haven’t even gotten my donations together.

The real problem here is that after a year of budgeting and planning and working it all out, I’m faced with the unexpected. Summer camp requires you to pay 100% of the cost before the child even starts camp, and I wasn’t aware of or prepared for that. Maybe I should have been, I don’t know. So despite saving aggressively for preschool (so I could pay the entire amount in August, thereby eliminating the interest (10%!!!!!) they charge to make monthly payments, I still am screwed. This month I have to pay $1,800 for extended day at preschool (necessary in order to work) for next year. I also have to pay $300 for two weeks of camp so that my younger child will be in “school” until the same date as my older son. I have one week with no plan for either of them, then the following week they both go for 1/2 day for the week.

After that they start camp at the YMCA (116 acres and a pond and lots of activities, I think they’ll enjoy it). We already had to pay a $772 deposit for this last month, and this month $1,496 is due, and next month $1,072 is due. This month I also have to pay my town taxes, about $1,630. This is just overwhelming for me.

I have been saving and saving and SAVING! I am insanely frustrated.

As I see it, I have 3 options.

1) Charge camp. I *think* I will be able to pay that back within the grace period (current balance = 0 so no interest).

2) Take the $1,000 out of my emergency fund, leaving me with nothing in there, so I’d have to charge emergencies anyway.

3) Borrow money from my mom.

I really don’t want to borrow money from my mom, even if I can pay it back within a month or so. I just don’t want to.

The other two options seem more psychological than anything else. Both feel defeating.

The other issue is that making sure I have money for camp and for preschool means I pretty much have nothing extra. No snowflake or snowball at all. I hate that. I wasn’t able to snowball this month, and I don’t think I can start again until August. Unless, you know, we have some kind of windfall. On the other hand, by August I can successfully drop savings for camp and preschool and full-day kindergarten to $440 per month, down from a high of  $1,850 this June. That will significantly improve the snowball at least. Or at last.

So here I am, praying for windfalls and snowflakes!

September 4, 2009


Filed under: crazy,family,parents — by elysianconfusion @ 8:16 pm
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On Sunday I came home to a message from my dad, wondering if we were mad at him as he never hears from us. I called back. No answer. I left a message. I’ve left many other messages already and sent emails. I don’t understand it.

Last night he called again. Are you mad at me? No. Then he explained that he can’t check his voicemail because he doesn’t know how. I log in to his Vonage account — and it’s canceled because (surprise!) he hasn’t paid the bill in three months. The real mystery is that he called me on the Vonage line. So although I can’t change his features or check his messages, the phone line is still working. Now I’d never believe that if I hadn’t seen it myself.  He is the master of the weird tech stuff.

All in all it was a better conversation than usual. He did not actually yell at me about anything.

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