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My English Castle

So Many Things to Think About

October 20th, 2021 at 09:00 PM by My English Castle

Nothing like the middle of the semester to get me mired in thought.  I'm thinking about good students, bad students, disappearing students, and fraught committee work.    I'm also thinking about retirement.  I posted a question on the forums after learning some of my friends are either already taking Social Security or planning on taking it early.  Has the advice changed on that? 
Other things on my mind are the tuition bill juggling for DD's...
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CB in the City

Dentist's Visit and Stretching Food

October 20th, 2021 at 07:40 PM by CB in the City

I went to the dentist yesterday, and I got my teeth cleaned and got bitewing x-rays.  I couldn't believe it was time for x-rays again, but they said my last x-rays were panoramic, so a different animal, I guess.  Anyway, I did not pay for any of it; they filed the claim.  I guess it pays to complain.
That saved me some money.  The only recent spending was $2 for laundry this morning.  Variables are at 57% and we're 65% of the way through the month, so...
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Oct 18

October 20th, 2021 at 02:34 PM by Monkey Mama

October 18
$11 Lunch
$80 Groceries
Dinner:  Leftovers
I have to preface this post with the fact that MH is a, "Hell would freeze over before I eat out" personality.  Most especially when it comes to lunch at work.
Anyway, this is what I come home to today:  A bag of chips in a brown paper bag.  MH is asleep.  I don't think he did the grocery run he had planned today (a small one).  I look on the dining card and...
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Oct 16 & 17

October 20th, 2021 at 02:27 PM by Monkey Mama

October 16
$97 Groceries
$1 Movie Prop
Dinner:  Cheeseburger Pasta
MH picked up a prop at a thrift shop today.  $1 for a "creepy doll".   Might pick up a couple of other options.  The original prop was lost to the big/recent fire. 
October 17
$65 Allowance MH
$40 School Pictures
$12 Home Depot
Dinner: ...
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2021 Credit Card Reward Tally

October 20th, 2021 at 01:53 PM by Monkey Mama

2021 TALLY:
$800 Cash (Chase Sapphire Quadruple Dip, MH) 
$30 Venmo ($10 x 3 Sign Up Bonuses)
**In addition, various monthly rewards that I will tally at 12/31
I don't personally have any reason to use Venmo.  I tested a free $10 bonus at some point, just for opening an account.  Was more just testing it out for MM, before he turned 18.  
MH was...
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petrol prices are soaring

October 20th, 2021 at 01:18 AM by mumof2

Woke up to find out that petrol (gas) prices have started going up to $1.85 per litre, with no idea of when it will be going down..highest it has been in a really long time...for those of you that is 1 gallon for you which equals approx 3.7 litres..which wouldbe $6.85 per gallon (aus)...which would be around $5.11 per gallon...guess we won't be going many places anymore....I am guessing with the price of that going up then food will rise as well since trucks will cost more to transport...
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Finally! Cell phone # ported over

October 19th, 2021 at 10:59 PM by Dido

I called the Porting Department of Consumer Cellular directly, since the last Customer Service Rep gave me their number after about 4 previous calls.  Once I reached the representative, he was able to conference me in to his call with Tracfone.  They sent me a code to verify my current phone and then they released my number and they at long last were able to port my phone number over.  I just tested it from my work phone and the new iPhone rings when you call my...
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Inflation is crazy

October 19th, 2021 at 08:38 PM by LivingAlmostLarge

Inflation is crazy right now. You can just see it everywhere.  In my car mileage sheet the year started 1/7/21 with gas at $2.60/gallon. My recent fill up a week ago was $3.60/gallon.  38% increase in gas in 10 months. Eggs were $1.79 for an 18 count at target in July 2021 is not $2.49 for the same 18 count.  Sugar 4 lb white bag was $1.79 it's not $2.49.  Dark brown 2 lbs sugar was $1.59 it's $1.99.  Chicken breast and thighs boneless/skinless was...
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health miscommunications

October 19th, 2021 at 04:41 AM by mumof2

So my step son suffers (like my hubby) from hemiplegic migraines...although they get different step sons affect his brain..he has trouble doing things, remembering things etc so in june they ordered an EEg on his brain..he had the doc yesterday and I ased him about what he said about his eeg not being done yet...he said he said I thought I have had enough it doesn't take that long to get one done (usually a month to 6 weeks at most) I call the hospital...
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October 19th, 2021 at 02:03 AM by Amber

Since June, I have been trying to file an unemployment claim. This nonsense that people are receiving unemployment funds so they do not want to work is just that nonsense. I haven’t received a thing in four months. 
I’ve tried calling the office, only to be disconnected. You’re unable to send an email. I can’t imagine what families are going through who are desperately in need of these funds. It’s absolutely insane. 
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STILL trying to transfer my cell phone!

October 19th, 2021 at 12:00 AM by Dido

Checking in here, I see that I have been trying to transfer my cell phone number to a new smart phone for OVER 6 weeks now!  I started by ordering an iPhone SE from Tracfone, my original provider, on 9/4.  By 9/23, after having received an iphone with the SIM card not installed and not being able to get any help from Tracfone (I found their online instructions incomprehensible), I returned the iPhone to Tracfone and ordered the same phone from Consumer Cellular for $50...
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New Gig Alert

October 18th, 2021 at 10:58 PM by Amber

Great news, today I landed another contract, averaging about $8k a month. Thank God! 
I’ll admit, I was a little nervous with all that is going on; however, today I landed another gig and I’m so thankful. 
I’d interviewed for the role and really hit it off with the hiring manager. She liked myself and another candidate, went to her manager about budgeting for two roles vs one and it was approved. 
You all have no idea...
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christmas is done

October 18th, 2021 at 12:58 PM by mumof2

Christmas shopping is done and paid for, still waiting for a couple to come in as I have just ordered them, the rest are wrapped and in the cupboard...feels good that I am almost done, will only have food to do at christmas time...ordered early thinking it would take a while to get things in from overseas but it really hasn't taken that that has been good. 
The weather here has been getting a little nicer here the last couple of days so hubby and I have been taking...
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Retirement and Net Worth Update

October 18th, 2021 at 12:40 AM by Lucky Robin

Finally had some upward mobility in the retirement account.  This is the first time in a long time where we weren't plopping our money in and then it would drop and we'd spend the next two weeks just getting it back to where it was when we plopped our money in.  It feels good to more than just read water.  Let's hope it continues.
It is up by $1,318.52 since the last time I reported in, bringing the new balance to $64,607.53.
This brings net worth up to $119,321.85.
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Oct 14 & 15

October 18th, 2021 at 12:33 AM by Monkey Mama

October 14
$70 Target (Groceries)
$20 MH Allowance Spending
$0 Movies
Dinner:  Leftovers
I guess my boss didn't realize I was working yesterday and is out of town Thursday through Friday.  Makes for a *very* quiet week.  👍  
MH is off seeing a "free" movie with his unlimited pass.  & he went to Target after work today.  Not sure what all he got, but probably just groceries.  We were out of cat...
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Freezer Issues and Hog/Chicken Fund

October 18th, 2021 at 12:11 AM by Lucky Robin

I don't know if I've talked about the freezer debacle or not, but the freezer we bought last December broke down in late July and we have been put through the wringer with Frigidaire ever since, trying to get them to honor their warranty.  For a long while it just felt like they were trying to run out the warranty.  Plus no one in town fixes Frigidaires anymore unless you've bought it from them.  We didn't buy it from any of those places.  We would have, but...
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Payday Report for 10/15/2021

October 17th, 2021 at 11:24 PM by Lucky Robin

As a reminder, I run a zero based budget, which means that every penny of the paycheck has a home.  I don't run a zero-based checking acount, however.  I have an $800 cushion in there, I just pretend it isn't there.  This week neither DD or I have spending money budgeted for because we both made game purchases.  The same will be true for next payday.  We did both have the money saved for it, but couldn't make it to the credit union at the time we charged...
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Oct 12 & 13

October 16th, 2021 at 11:54 PM by Monkey Mama

October 12
$9 Car Wash
$25 Toll Tag Refill
Dinner:  Leftovers
Today was a mixed bag.
We live in a community with a high number of retirees and self-employed.  If I want to go wait in a really long line, I do anything on a weekday.  (Sounds counter intuitive I guess, but how it has always been for me).  Today ended up being very hit and miss.  I alternated between no lines (flu shot and car wash) and excruciating waits...
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Oct 10 & 11

October 16th, 2021 at 11:21 PM by Monkey Mama

October 10
Dinner:  Greek Chicken Penne
Another No Spend Day.
Things that would have been nice 10-20 years ago:  MH's cousin just made the lower-cost move to our locale.  This was always their plan, to move here when their eldest started high school.  So it wasn't pandemic or recently motivated.  But the pandemic probably made it an easier transition.  They both have kept their mega high paying Bay Area jobs,...
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CB in the City

Dentist and Medicare

October 16th, 2021 at 08:53 PM by CB in the City

So... sometime last year I handed my Medicare Advantage card to my dentist's receptionist and asked her to check for dental benefits.  I kept seeing ads on TV touting the benefits on the plan I have.  I know I didn't have dental benefits when I started, but I think last year that changed, though I was never notified.  The receptionist acted put out and did some sort of cursory check and told me I had no dental benefits.  I took her at her word, though her attitude...
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