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Archive for January, 2010

Interest

February 1st, 2010 at 06:11 am

I earned $300 more than I spent last month, so went to transfer the savings into my EF. I realised I has earned nz$5.47 in interest on that account. Yay.

It's nowhere Financial Independence yet, but I get the feeling my money is working for me rather than just me working for money.

Free lunch

January 25th, 2010 at 06:18 am

The cornmeal curse continued last night with me boiling dry the beans, but didn't burn the pot too badly.

I went to the art center where I remembered I still owed them some money for jewellry materials. Noone could figure out the exact amount so I gave them nz$9. Now I can say truly I don't owe nuttin' to nobody.

They played a movie at lunchtime and provided food to eat, club sandwiches and sausage rolls. Very filling so I didn't eat much for dinner, just a couple salad bananas for 30 cents. Now I have 60 cents left in my purse and don't intend to take out any more till Wednesday.

Cornmeal curse

January 24th, 2010 at 03:21 am

I have some cornmeal which has been sitting in my pantry for a while so decided to use it. Yesterday I made polenta but when I tried to then fry it I hadn't made it thick enough and it turned into a big mess in the skillet.

So this mornign I tried making cornmeal pancakes but discovered I had run out of baking powder so my pancakes were flat and stodgy instead of light and fluffy.

Never mind persevere. I'll try tortillas next, with vege chilli as it's a cool damp day.

Early retirement extreme

January 22nd, 2010 at 06:27 am

Check out this website
http://earlyretirementextreme.com/

I guess it's possible to retire in 5 years if you live a bare essentials existence and have a $80,000 income, but when your earnings are much more average and you want some of the things that make life a little more pleasant you're looking at a longer working life.

Still, it got me thinking. If living a minimalist existance for 5 years would guarantee I'd never have to work again, how much would I be prepared to give up?

No car? Don't have one anyway.

Shop in thrift stores forever after? Fine by me.

Never eat icecream and cake again? I guess so.

Give up drinking tea? Umm, I may have to think about this.

Spend the rest of my life knitting from my stash? Noooo you can't do this to me. I defend my right to buy more wool even if I'm working in Mcd's at 90.

How far are you prepared to go?

The cost of education

January 21st, 2010 at 05:14 am

I borrowed a book from the library last month called The Armchair Economist by Steven Landsburg. I was so diligently perusing it trying to educate myself I forget to return it on time and it cost me 30 cents. Still beats signing up for a semester study on the subject.

I have decided the problem with economists, financial policy advisors and others of that ilk is they are all doing better than average so support whatever system enables them to do well. If economists earned minimum wage I bet we'd see some very different economic theories.

Ooh look, here comes money

January 16th, 2010 at 06:54 am

On my way to work this mornig I found 10 cents. When I got back tonite there were three letters in my mailbox - all from the IRD.

The first said my student loan, which was supposed to have been paid in full in 2002, actually had a balance of $5.13, but they are writing this off so I now officially owe nothing.

The second said I had qualified for an interest write off in 2002 which hadn't been credited, so they would be shortly sending me a refund.

The third contained my refund check - for $14.24.

I was left wondering how much it cost them to process all that little lot and considering how to spend my windfall. The wool sale is now safely over so I quess it will have to go in my EF.

Flash cash

January 7th, 2010 at 05:29 am

Oo it's hard to be working in the January sales. People all around you snapping up bargains and you wonder if there'll be any left for you. Plus there's that staff discount. All too easy to pull out the debit card and there's one purchase of nz$51.90 and another of 119.70 and I'm carrying home my winter wardrobe to be knitted. I justify it by telling myself I can wear my jerseys at work, but really, I don't think I'd have bought so much wool if I'd had to pull a wad of notes out of my wallet. So I'm going to go to a cash basis and see if the pain of parting with the greens makes me spend less.

Getting gazelle

January 2nd, 2010 at 12:53 am

I've been listeneing to Dave Ramsey online and I like what he has to say about getting focused on one goal at a time. At the moment I'm putting a little bit here and a little bit there for half a dozen things, and I feel like I'm not making any progress. Getting one goal acheived before going on to the next strikes me as a good idea.

So today I took the nz$800 I'd saved in my travel account and added it to my EF, bringing the total to $2500. When that is completed I will increase my contribution to Kiwisaver, and after that focus on the trip saving.

I wonder why it seems so much harder to save money than pay off debt. With the money sitting in the bank, there's always something to spend it on and it grows so slooooowly.