I have been asked if I will work 2 days at the shop, and I'm happy to do that, but the math really sux. Above the nz$80 a week limit, I pay secondary income tax of 22 cents in the dollar, then WINZ deducts 70 cents in the dollar from my benefit. I am left ONE single dolar better off for every extra hour I work - and that's before I've paid for busfare and pantyhose. I shall still do it, because of getting a reference, but I feel like writing a letter to the Prime Minister asking him if he thinks this situation encourages people to help support themselves by working.
Archive for June, 2009
Today I worked both jobs. Boy am I pooped. But it's nice to be asked to work extra hours. At the shop this morning I was asked to bank the last 2 days of sale takings - great thick envelopes stuffed with $20 bills. I was glancing over my shoulder the whole way in case someone was stalking me. I was also considering whether I could claim expenses for 10 cents worth of shoe leather, when lo and behold! outside the bank I picked up a 20 cent and 2 10 cents.
Today we were putting away all the sales stock. i was cheered to realise how much was left and that it will all go out at the next sale. I won't be in such a rush to buy at a sale again - there'll always be another one.
On my way to the church cleaning job I stopped of at the little Asian grocers and bought 1.5 kg apples for nz$2. That is a very good price. Apples and all fruit have gotten real expensive.
I remeber when we first came to this country nearly forty years ago, there was no weekend shopping. There was an old joke about the American who arrived on Sunday and found New Zealand closed. Only the corner dairies were open for people to get milk, bread, icecream and cigarettes. No shops open on public hols, when it was a long weekend like Easter, the shops could be shut for several days. How things have changed. Now every day of the year you can see people stocking up for a siege.
I have fallen into the habit of dropping into the supermarket on my way home from church and picking up something from the deli. I also wander through the mall if I am in town to change my library books (tho I rarely buy anything there.) I have decided to make Sunday a day of rest and give up shopping. I am not going to die if I have to wait 24 hours for something.
ETA I found I had run out of laundry powder but rather than buy some I opted for a rest from laundry as well.
and I seem to be the one person in the country who hasn't bought a ticket. Everyone is talking about what they'll do if they win. The odds are 1 in 16 million - that's four times the country's population. I picked up 10 cents outside the Lotto shop - more than most people will win.
I was chatting with an artist at church today. He told me he had just bought 4 boxes of comics. I confessed I have 246 balls of wool.
He grinned. "Ah yes," he said. "We creative types need to keep a lot of raw material for inspiration."
So there. I am not a homely knitter. I am a fiber artist and I need plenty of supplies.
I worked extra hours this week because of the sale. I spent all the extra money earned in the sale. 65 balls of wool. Nearly nz$100 worth. 16 white, 20 black, 20 earth tones, 8 purple and one striped sock wool. All 100% wool and very good value - if I needed it all.
I tell myself it is for gifts to knit for other people and for charity. I tell myself I haven't got a white cardigan so I need to knit one. I tell myself I won't be spending money on other things if I am sitting peacefully at home knitting.
Who am I kidding? I have a massive stash already. It will take me at least 2 years knitting to get thru it. Why do I keep buying yarn and then not get round to using it. I am addicted to the thrill of fondling the lovely balls, the planning of a new project, the excitement of casting on a new garment. Once I get finished I lose interest. I have knitted literally hundreds of jerseys and kept very few of them.
I make resolutions to not buy any more yarn until I have used up my stash. This week my resolve crumpled again. My stash is bigger than ever. The pleasure I get from knitting is beginning to be spoiled from worry about the money I am wasting. My hobby has gone thru passion to become an addiction.
There are no twelve step groups for compulsive yarn buyers. All knitters are stash hoarders and enable each others habit. Working in a yarn store is the worst environment for an addict. Everyone there only works to support their habit and spends more than they earn on wool.
My last remaining excuse is that if I didn't keep my fingers busy knitting I would be a chain smoker. There, I'm feeling virtuous again. It's good for my health.
I said all the coins were covered up by the snow yesterday. Today it is all melted and I found 90 cents.
Winter arrived with a vengeance today. Minus 4 degrees C and snow down to sea level. This happens 1 or 2 days a year in our town and always causes chaos. The place was cut off from the rest of the country with motorways closed. The buses stopped running and all schools were closed. I was happy to stay indoors and watch the pretty flakes falling and the students enjoying a break from exams by sliding down the hills on baking trays.
The only problem I didn't know if I was needed at work or not. I rang several times but only got the usual answerphone message. In the end I walked there and found the place was shut. And if there was any money on the ground it was covered by the snow.
Never mind, I would sooner take the trouble than not turn up and be growled at for absenteeism. Now I am going to have a long soak in a hot bathtub then make myself a plate of chili beans.
According to the scale this morning I have lost 3 lb. I celebrated this evening after work by buying fries. Oops.
I'm not sure what to call this - maybe sweet and sour pilaf. It's what you cook when the pantry's almost empty. Fry sliced onions until golden, throw in some rice and cook till the grains turn white. Add your preferred amount of salt, vinegar and sugar. Toss in a handful of raisins and pour in boiling water. cover and simmer until the rice is cooked and the water absorbed.
Sorry for no precise measurements. I'm a pinch of this and dash of that cook - I don't even own a scale.
Yay! I now owe less than three thousand dollars to the Credit Union - this is my only debt. Since it is zero interest there is no rush to pay it off, but it's nice to see the amount going down
I thought I would wear a skirt this morning since I have completed my nice legwarmers. Woe is me! I tried on three skirts and couldn't do the zip up on any of them. I rushed to the bathroom scale which confirmed the bad news - I weigh 170 lb. Too much! I'm going to have to rescusitate the diet. No more raspberry buns and cheese scones and fried potatoes. Pancakes regarded with aversion. No more sugar in my tea. All the bad little habits which sneaked in have to go. Sigh. But better than having to spend money on fat clothes.
Today I went opp shopping with a friend. I decided I didn't need any new clothes, and there wasn't anything I really liked anyway. The nicknacks all need dusting so i passed on buying ornaments, but I did come across a big bag of new wool for nz25. A lovely chocolate brown. I was tempted to buy it and knit a cardigan, but decided I don't usually wear brown so dont' have much it will go with, and anyway it was too much money to spend. Then we went and had a cup of coffee nz3. Hmm, I'll never get anywhere if I keep celebrating saving money by spending money. I think I will keep out of the thrift store until my EF is up to nz5000. It's far too easy to impulse spend a couple bucks here and there - and find at the end of the month I've spent megabucks. I need to get real disciplined and shop with a list of what I need rather than popping in just to see what there is.
I think the supermarket bakery is getting a wee bit greedy with their prices in the day old bread bin. A bag of scones used to cost nz1.50, now it has gone up to 2.99. Too much - I'll go back to baking my own.