Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Happy Birthday to Me!!

I am in an amazingly good mood.

I am 49 years old today. My goal for a long time has been to turn 50 in the best shape of my life. (Sadly, that's actually setting the bar rather low!) As part of that goal, I decided to try to get my weight down to 130 by today, then follow that up by actually maintaining the weight loss (for a change) for an entire year, while simultaneously exercising and getting in better shape.

Well, I didn't make my goal. But since July 1st, I have lost 12 pounds (!!!) and I made it all the way to 131.5, which is close enough for me to feel great about it. And I do feel great. I mean, I feel better. It's amazing how much of a difference it makes, not having to drag around those extra pounds of lard.

I got another $50 rewards check from Amazon Visa, which mostly just tells me that I'm still spending too much money at Amazon.com! So that brings me $80.68 towards my next hundred dollars.

They're stinkers. All the credit card companies are. I just got an offer in the mail from Amazon: an extra 2500 bonus points (=$25) if I spend $1600 between October 1st and December 31st on my credit card. They just live to help us rack up the debt, don't they?

And within the last few days, I saw two credit card offers in magazines: (1) Every time you charge a restaurant meal to our card, we'll enter you in our drawing 5 times!! (2) Buy with our card and your purchase may be free! Every few minutes, one of our customers gets their purchase for free. It might be you!

Time to pay it down.

On October 17th, I'm going to log right back onto Paypal and get out my next $500.

I just had a bunch of eBay auctions close. I only sold two small items. But since listing is free until early January, I just turned right back around and relisted everything. It never ceases to amaze me how one week something can generate no interest whatsoever, and the following week it suddenly sells well.

I just finished reading Room. Really good book.

Sunday, October 3, 2010


When last we left my “count”, I had $5.49 towards TWENTY-THREE. Well, I got a refund from Calvert School for the art kit for $187. Then I pulled $500 out of my PayPal account that was money I made on eBay. I sold a couple of things on Amazon and took those payouts. Also, I helped a friend sell something which shall remain nameless, for which she gave me a “commission” of $100. I made $25 cash selling some dresses in town instead of on eBay. And I found $4 in Susan B. Anthony and Sacajawea coins lying around the house.

leftover $5.49
refund $187
eBay $500
Amazon $77.80
Amazon $31.39
commission $100
dresses $25
coins $4

That's a total of $930.68 aka TWENTY-THREE, TWENTY-FOUR, TWENTY-FIVE, TWENTY-SIX, TWENTY-SEVEN, TWENTY-EIGHT, TWENTY-NINE, THIRTY, THIRTY-ONE, and $30.68 towards THIRTY-TWO. And it doesn't count the $700+ I have sitting at PayPal!

OCTOBER TALLY $17,329.38

Just caught an embarrassing grammatical “typo” in my last entry. Good thing no one reads this blog, eh?

Well. I feel less than optimal about what I accomplished in the last month. It isn't that I didn't get the debt paid down; I did. But the two cards I actually use came in quite high this month.

My Amazon Visa debt was $512.60. The problem is that the card only shows the individual purchases as “Amazon”. So I don't know if I bought something useful (gluten-free food) or something stupid. And Amazon makes it none too easy to look at a summary of your monthly purchases, for what are probably obvious reasons.

Then my Disney Visa came in at a staggering $819.83. As I looked at what made that total so high (mail-order diabetes supplies, annual AAA payment, etc.), I could see that the individual purchases were actually justified. But, dang, that total was high!

Usually I use the points on my Disney Visa to pay for Mickey's Halloween Party, a very overpriced event that I can feel good about only by feeling like I didn't actually pay for it. But this year I must have really cut down on my credit card expenses, because I don't even have enough points to pay for all three of us to attend the party for “free”. So I'll have to pay out-of-pocket and save my points for annual passes in the spring.

Anyway, I paid both of those cards in full, then stared at my finances for a while longer before paying another $1,016.72 on my actual credit card debt.

Leaving me with a total debt of (drum roll, please) $17,329.38, another nice drop!

I hope I have enough money left over to make it through the month! And I plan to continue selling on eBay, where listing is free until early next year!

I have sold so much stuff on eBay that, due to the $500 monthly withdrawal limit, I have funds at PayPal I can't even access until mid-November. I have over $700 sitting there. I hear I can request a debit card and access the money sooner, but then I'd be worried that I'd actually spend some of it, defeating the whole purpose.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

iPads and Aspergers

Apple iPad MC349LL/A 16gb (Wi-fi + 3g)Yesterday I went to the eye doctor. And I had to drag poor Cathy with me.

There was a man there in the second waiting room (don't ask) using an iPad. I want an iPad. We got to talking. He mentioned that his daughter, who was born with a terminal condition and has spent her entire life lying in a wheelchair, could use the iPad very well. He went on and on about her. She is 14. She has some sort of neuromuscular disorder.

Of course, I didn't mind hearing about her. And he showed us a very nice photo of her at Disney World with Minnie and Mickey. But Cathy has Aspergers and one of her “things” is not doing well hearing about diseases. She was looking more and more queasy as this conversation went on.

I kept asking her if she was doing okay. She said yes, but indicated that she really wanted a subject change. Several times. The man did not take this well. He scowled over that quite a bit.

It is interesting that a man who has spent over 14 years with a seriously disabled child for whom he must have constantly needed and demanded understanding from others could not grant an iota of understanding to my child. It clearly didn't even cross his mind that she might be different, just that she might be rude.

I guess anyone can be tolerant of differences. As long as they're your own.