Thank you all!

Paying off the credit card renewed my desire to continue BS#2 and we are on our way to our goal of being debt-free! Its been so long since we started the FPU classes, this was a *major* accomplishment for us. 🙂

No we aren’t debt free, but we are a lot closer

After waiting since Thursday to find out and all day today dh finally had his review about 4 this afternoon. The result is: drumroll please. A promotion to Cad Specialist and a $2 per hour raise. I don’t know which I am happier about. Dh was the Cad Specialist at his last job and he’s really missed doing that work instead of just drafting. Oh he’ll still be doing some drafting, when they don’t need him to do things with the AutoCad program, but it will allow him to do what he truly loves to do.

It also means he’ll be less likely to be sent out in the field to do walk downs. Considering his age, weight and tendency to get clots in his legs this makes me VERY happy. It also means he (maybe us) will probably be going back to Las Vegas this winter—we’ll see. I’m not sure I want to go back, it’s kind of boring when he’s in classes all day and I don’t gamble. So the news at 4:15 today was very good as far as I am concerned.

Other homework news include the sale of a book for a $10 on amazon. Great advances on the ongoing pantry project, and of course ds’ $1 pay raise.

The goose we chased last week has created another nest and immediately went broody on it. She’s one determined Mama.

I spent a lot of time this week doing research for various recipes that I normally just mix up and cook to try and figure out the proper measurements to post on my Patterson’s Pantry & Recipe Blogs. This post was about eating more fruits and ways to include a fruit salad of sorts in every meal, including dessert, of the day. The link is below if you are interested in adding more fruit to your diet.
I’m currently working on a chart to go with my second gardening post. This chart will include amounts of seeds/plants you need per person, what moon cycle to plant them in, what the average 10 ft row will produce and other things. I’m hoping to get the post up before much longer. Doing the chart is taking a little longer than I thought it would. Which is dumb since I have a sliding excel spreadsheet for companion planting of roughly 130 plants I did a year or so ago and I know it took me weeks to make, but boy do I use the heck out of that thing since then.
While my cough is determined to be a summer house guest I am feeling very well other than the coughing fits and my house is slowly returning to order.

While dh has been working on the pantry ds has decided he is a one man lumber team and has been taking down the dead trees around the house at a good pace. As soon as the guys revamp our wood rack I will probably spend a good part of each day for awhile stacking firewood for next winter. He’s already cut up a lot of trees and there are still hundreds to go. I say it will be safe to say that next winter will probably be strictly wood heat.

Then there was the scare dh gave us that thankfully turned out to be badly strained muscles.

Apparently we are going to go from deep winter to deep summer overnight. Two nights ago it was below freezing for several nights in a row. Yesterday was in the mid 80’s and today low 90’s. Gee I wonder why I get a bad cold and cough this time every year. LOL!

The guys are going to TRY to get the birds out of the garden this coming weekend, so gardening is in my very near future as well.

So that’s my homework report for the week.

Ha Ha!

Not only do we think a like, but we have like minded husbands. My husband isn’t part of carrying some debt (although he certainly used to be), but he lets me do most of the money crunching, investment allocation, worrying, on my own. Sometimes I think it’s easier this way to not have to argue (or compromise, to be honest), but I am making him sit down and look at his weekly business budget. He doesn’t like it; he’d rather I just took total control of that too.

I have to tell you, I’m going through a major house purging right now, and we’re starting to attack house chores like Keisha is. I keep staring at that iRobot of ours. You may just find it on your doorstep one of these days. I’ve already decided that once it goes, it’s going to you. :0)


I saw your post right after I posted mine. Great minds think alike! No, my DH never even went through FPU himself, much less facilitate it! He still believes some debt is ok (large equip for business, cars), so I’m swimming upstream sometimes. I’d love to have him a bit more gung-ho, but he’s never fully “drunk the kool-aid!”

I’m a bit of a control freak, so I’m still struggling with the budget committee meeting, because I want him to know what’s going on in our financial life, but not to mess with it! I have to be more willing to share the monthly budget with him ahead of time and let him change parts. That is really hard. Starting this week though, we WILL have our “meeting”. I don’t want to ask my students how their meeting went and not have had one myself!

Can’t wait to hear more stories!

You are such an inspiration to me! Getting on Baby Step 7 has totally changed your life. You can give and spend and play like NO ONE ELSE! So it’s been a couple of months now with no mortgage payment. Has it sunk in yet that the biggest payment in your budget is gone forever? Since you were paying a mortgage and snowballing on to it to get it paid off early, I’m assuming it was even more than just a mortgage payment amount. So your disposable income has really gone up. Re-doing your house must be a complete joy since you aren’t going into debt to pay for it.

What are your future plans after that is completed? Will you save for a car, take a big European vacation, buy another house? You are so young to have paid off a mortgage, that you will have 30+ years ahead of you to build a new family tree. I assume you have your FFEF, retirement 15% in place and investments for your children’s futures as well. So the mortgage/snowball money is left for you to do with whatever you want.

I’d love to hear what you and your husband have talked about doing long-term. It’s so exciting for a “friend” that will discuss their money life is on Step 7!

Until one of those trees decides to fall on your house or your neighbor’s house

The shade was nice, until I had to deal with tree huggers and the city arborist (Just one, for Atlanta) which one has to go through before you so much as touch a leaf on the ailing thing. Then when it feel, in my neighbors house, my home owners wanted to know why I didn’t cut it down prior to the “incident”. Big mess and choice words.. I learned my lesson, don’t plant trees around the house. At least not here.

We’re west of Phx, and have similar bills

We’re fortunate enough to have evaporative coolers, so we only run the A/C during the hottest, most humid parts of the summer. The heat is set @ 62-64 all winter, but it almost never comes on. Once in awhile it will get down to freezing & we’ll wake up glad we leave it on.

I do wish we hadn’t gotten house fever when we bought this place, though. The long sides of our house face east & west, along with most of our windows. We get terrible heat gain on summer afternoons. So far we’ve extended our porch roof & planted some desert trees on the west site, and it helps a little. I’m jealous of the old high end homes in the middle of town that were built before A/C. Thick walls, huge, south facing windows, big, shady trees, sleeping porches & deep overhangs. If we ever build a place out here, we’ll be stealing a LOT of ideas!

Alright, enough already!

You’re making me crazy jealous! LOL This past January dh and I were in Denver for the western wear market for our store. It also happened to be the same weekend the Broncos played the Ravens. Brocos QB is from a legendary family here in Louisiana, the Mannings. I love Archie and all but Peyton really has an attitude. When he was with Indie and played the Saints in the Superbowl, he did not shake hands with any of the Saints after it was over. Sore loser I guess. Anyway, I digress. We will be going back to Denver because I ended up sick the whole weekend and unable to attend the market.

We haven’t used the air since we moved here

All our air ducts were ripped out before we moved here. We finally replaced them a few weeks ago. Our a/c is electric so I am praying it doesn’t run our power bill sky high. We just added new insullation and replaced some of the windows. We have ceiling fans in every room. I am hoping we won’t have to run it too much.


One thing I want to add, is that 90% of our windows face the south so we get get a lot of sun at the hottest part of the day. We have black out shade of three of the windows, we hang a dark cover over one of the others, and I wish there was more we could do for our sliding glass doors.

Last year we hung a fan in the dinning room which helps. But we have found if he keep the house any warmer in the summer, we can’t stand it.

I don’t turn the heat on

in the winter unless we are having a string of cold nights–40 and below, the day temp is set at 68.

summer, I try to hold off as long as I can. I have had the ac on a few days, but that is because the humidity combined with the heat was terrible. I do have a dehumidifier that I run when the humidity is unbearable. Day temp with ac is 80. I have a 4 time set on my ac/heat, so it is cooler at night (74) and gradually increases/decreases during the day. I’m thinking that next week, I’ll be having to turn it on for the summer.

What I find so painfull is the fact that since everyone has been so careful about water and energy use, the prices for each has increased as they have seen revenue decline. I’m not using more water than I have in the past 21 yrs living here, but my rate has doubled. The electric we have been using more, but the house is more energy efficient, so we aren’t using much more than we have in the past 21 yrs, but we are also paying double.

I’ve done everything they suggest about lowering usage, but it doesn’t help if my conservation causes the rates to rise….I know that I’m not the only customer that feels that way

Where it the world do you live?!

We live in south Louisiana near the gulf coast. We often joke that we have 2 seasons, hot and hotter. No one here really owns “coats”. A like microfiber jacket is all I own. Many people here wear a similar jacket or sweat shirt or sweater, etc.

Our summers? Totally different story. We are having temps in the low 80’s now and I am surprised it’s not warmer. Soon enough we will have mid to upper 90’s with matching humidity. The air is like a sauna most days even when we have no rain. But when it rains, it is often made worse, not better. We will have 90’s through the end of September and possibly into October like we did last year. Ugh. Dd’s birthday is Oct. and there have been years it was warm enough to have a swimming party if we’d had a pool. No kidding.

We try to keep our thermostat at 78º and usually once the temps get to the mid-80’s that is fine. It’ll run enough all day to keep it comfortable in the house. When the temps are upper 70’s to about 80, it may go too long between running to keep it comfortable.

Last winter we kept our thermostat at about 65º most days and nights. It was pretty comfortable for me though dh is on blood pressure meds and went around in an extra shirt or sweat shirt.

I am getting us signed up for bill averaging. It is available for electric and gas which are billed on the same bill. They average the last 12 months for your bill. It is not the exact same amount every month but usually very close, within a few dollars or so. I am anxious to see how much it turns out to be.

We don’t have whole house A/C

– it’s not common in older houses in New England, and it wasn’t practical to add it. Our house is what they call a Cape Cod and it retains heat, which is very nice in the winter but our upstairs roasts in the summer. We have two bedroom A/C’s and one for my office, and also one for the living room that we don’t even put in, some years. I keep my room at 78 for sleeping but sometimes turn it to 74 for a bit right before bed. My daughter’s A/C doesn’t have a digital reading but I think she keeps it warmer than I do ; I wouldn’t be surprised if hers was 78 or 80.

We still have the heat on here, it was in the 30’s one night last week and it’s supposed to be cold tomorrow! Highs in the 60’s and lows in the 40’s mostly, this time of year.

Suits me, I hate weather over about 80.

We are fortunate to have a house that requires no a/c

Many neighbors have refrigerated air and/or swamp coolers but when we built our house we not only sited it for optimal solar positioning (summer and winter) but we also have thick straw bale walls. We turn off our heat (about now) and only need a bit of fan action to keep the house cool. (In fact, sometimes my house feels so cool in the summer that I turn on my space heater at my desk.)

Well based on our experience with SS it will take a long time

Remember we TOLD them we would need to stop payments to us six months before they got around to doing so. Then it took them over a year to bill us for it and then they said they owed us, then we owed them, then they owed us and finally we owed them. Then it took them a few months to start billing us and we couldn’t pay on it until we got a bill. Then I paid them off early—or so I thought. They ran my $580 check through as $500.80, it took them two months to let us know they did that. Then after I paid the $79.80 it took three months to get the paid in full notice. So if I was this man, I wouldn’t hold my breath waiting on the SS to straighten it out, considering they’ve included IRS in the mess now too. Chances are if he has a son with the same name the son will end up dealing with this in the far away future.

Set me on fire at 78 degrees

Maybe its my profession or poor health or something, but I can’t stand to be hot. I like it morgue like 🙂 I rarely run my heat which I reason makes up for my high electric bills in the summer. However looking up my bills over the past year, the highest was 134.00. I’m pretty proud that I’ve yet to turn on the air conditioning, I’m playing a game in my mind to see if I can make it until June 1st. So far, Atlanta has actually had a spring. We usually go from cold to Hotlanta instantaneously.

Budget Committee Meeting!

We did it! Haven’t had a budget committee meeting for years! I didn’t want to be a hypocrite and tell my FPU class to have a budget committee meeting and then not have one myself for May. I do all the budgeting for the home account. DH pays a bit more attention to what’s going on in the business. But this morning we had our first meaningful, insightful, and helpful budget meeting! It was great! I, being the nerd, created the budget and brought it to the meeting. Then, I shut up! DH, being the free spirit, had to give input and make changes to said budget.

I couldn’t get the budget to balance, so he volunteered to take his lunch to work more often this month and it saved us $450 due to Inc. We are also going to reduce our cable and change some payments we are making. Bingo, balanced the budget! The meeting lasted 19 minutes! Love that man!

Must be trying to feed the electric company gazelle

We are total electric, so we tend to watch our utility usage carefully. Yesterday, and the last few days it’s been around the 90 degree mark. We’ve been using the attic fan at night for some really comfy sleeping. Far cheaper than the ac for sure. When we retired last night the temps were still in the mid 80’s so naturally we turned on the attic fan.

About 2 this morning I woke up to a sound I couldn’t quite identify. After a few minutes I realized it wasn’t one sound but two, overlapping each other. The attic fan was the first one, and the second was the furnace. Temps had fell like a rock outside to the freezing mark, an over 50 degree drop. So the furnace that was on automatic, had kicked in when the attic fan drew in that cool air. Needless to say I got up, turned off the attic fan and closed all the windows. Amazingly enough it was nice and comfy in the house—thanks to the furnace, LOL! I’m sure our rural co-operative electric company will enjoy that double usage.

I had a very very very displeasurable experience

(is that a word? well anyway)I learned very quickly you cannot cross post and post to ebay copy written or some MLM’s based on contract agreements. Anyway, I learned and after 1 week retracted etc…not that it helped it had no affect anyway on getting any business..and to be honest, (totally honest) I have never sold to anyone or sponsor anyone, so it was truely a learning curve for me.

However the biggest part of the learning experience was not that I couldn’t sell anything or get anyone interested, I figured on the 1% of 1% rule, what I didn’t COUNT on, was other people in the organization reporting me, of course now I totally understand. I have to acknowledge that even in the small world of home sales businesses, the others do (and rightfully so) want to eliminate the loss leader or seller who (unknowingly in my respect) broke advertising rules..
oh well, learning 101 for me.

Does anyone have any stories of others who maybe reported you or got angry with you for possibly (their perception) taking business away, and eliminating the competition..I picture AVON ladies letting the air out of each others tires, or FUller Brush men tripping the salesmen as the leave their homes..

A loss leader is a product that is sold to entice people to purchase other products are the normal price

For example, Porter Roundhouse Steaks at US$2.50 per pound, with the expectation that the sales volume for related items (beer, potatoes, corn, etc) will offset the loss caused by selling the steak at below cost.

You can’t call eBay sales a loss leader, because there are no products sales from which the lost revenue can be offset.

There are only three instances when an experienced manager is willing to use a product as a loss-leader:
* The item is overstocked, and inventory needs to be reduced as fast as possible;
* The item is being discontinued, and they want to reduce inventory as fast as possible;
* There is an assurance that the sales of other products will offset the lost revenue that the loss-leader generates;

Im coming into this posting mid way and didnt read the first post

but just from this post, I would say that anyone who sells at a loss in the retail business is called a loss leader, and it is done to stimulate the entire business, I cant say that it isnt a good business practice, because I see everyday it is (with large or high volume businesses). I think most people or businesses wish that they can loss lead. I do not get jealous of people who do, I think they are enterprising..I wish I could do it!, but thank goodness ebay or the classifieds exist to stimulate that competition, it is really competition, an who can come up with the better mouse trap, or marketing strategy in this case…wish it was me, oh well…

The reason most companies would not want you to

link to your own private web site would be they are not sure of what claims you might make. You could say, “This product cures cancer.” and then link it to your corporate site. A reputable MLM company in business for many years, was closed a few years back because of claims of the distributors on their own web sites and on radio.
This hopefully prevents that from happening. The question of ebay, is that people put it on ebay and undercut distributor’s prices. It is unfair to the person who is working the business retail or sometimes it is even cheaper than you pay wholesale.

I can tell you a story..

this is timely, its not about Shaklee but a company I am affiliated with. Makes me wonder…if the company does not want you advertising their product, increasing revenue flow, and more retail funds, what is the actual story? Is it just a control issue? Licensing issue? Something that simple?
I wont break into a whine session, but I was told no advertising on ebay, (which was pulled, I understand but I have other questions now) they also said.. no linking back to my private website from the company website, no linking from my private website using the name/words/icon..
so some companies I understand by way of licensing, but if it meant more sales….?
Whats the real story on things that arent licensing issues…like linking etc..?