Electricity and Other Bills / NY Trip On The Horizon

Think I’ve been busier this week than I have the entire year.  Working a 9-6 shift, couple days on my lunch break, coming home to eat, then moving tubs and small pieces of furniture, for almost 2 weeks.  Rinse, repeat..Then squeezing social functions in with friends.

Just got the electricity bill for the last month.  As expected, it was a doosey, 242.98 and the summer just started 3 days ago.  For the larger furniture pieces we will be using a moving company that charges around $77/hr.  Clearly I’m in the wrong business.  Then again they have a lot of overhead and I would not want to move anything in this intense Texas heat.

Got my MacBook Air.  I totally love it.  Powerful, great battery life (with brightness turned down and doing some light browsing it reads over 8hrs!), light as a feather and best of all it produces far less heat than my old laptop. With Turbo Boost, the 1.8GHz Intel Core i5 is comparable to a lot of faster CPUs.  Still trying to sell it on Craigslist for $1200, had quite a few scam artists try to say something along the lines of hey I’m out of town on business in another country but really want to buy.  Send me your PayPal e-mail right away!!!  Thanks but no thanks…  I’d much rather return it back to stock and see what I could get for it that way.  So yeah a pain in the ass, but I’m hoping it will payoff soon.  If I can’t get it sold on Craigslist by the end of the week, off to eBay and taking a hit with the fees / shipping costs.

Have absolutely no buyer’s remorse in my purchase.  I no longer feel like my legs and nether region is burning when I use my laptop and a cat is curled up next to me.  That my friends is worth the price of admission.

Started doing The Paleo Diet and have been losing some more weight.  Lightest I’ve been since I got laid off in February.  At this rate I will have a six pack by my birthday.  Or at the very least be back to where I was in 2008.  The great thing about this diet is I can eat a lot and still lose weight.  Eliminating most of the starchy carbs that make me feel all bloated and miserable is key.  I will have protein and a vegetable for breakfast, a salad for lunch typically and a pretty much eat whatever I want for dinner within moderation.

We booked tickets to return to New York for a wedding in October.  Boyfriend paid half since it’s for his friend and he’s an overall sweetheart. Really looking forward to seeing my family, friends and taking part in some new experiences.  That means an obligatory trip to some posh NYC restaurant with a week+ long waiting list. 🙂

Extra pay week

In my haste, I completely forgot about a three week pay period in my semi-monthly pay.  My paycheck was much larger than it normally is, 120 hours of work, 9.5hrs of overtime and 8 hours of holiday pay.  It would be great if I got that amount of money every two weeks.  Thinking big picture, people take home more than that all over.  I want to figure out how to make that a reality for myself.

Moving is ongoing, a major pain in the ass still carrying tubs of clothes, shoes and miscellaneous belongings down 3 flights of stairs.  We have made significant progress, with over 50% of the non-furniture items moved already. Found some movers online and the rest of our stuff is being shipped out Monday for about $77/hour.

My car needs new tires.  Hankook Ventus V4s have a 40k warranty from PepBoys, and I have 31k on mine.  Only thing is if I get a pro-rated replacement, I can’t use their Buy 3 get 1 free offer.  I also never take my car to PepBoys… Visited Discount Tire and the guy said it would just barely pass inspection.  Did some comparison shopping and decided to take advantage of my regular dealer’s buy 3 get 1 free coupon.  I get Road Hazard coverage and Free Lifetime rotations.  Might as well do it since the car is under warranty for another 2 1/2 years / 60k and the tire warranty is for 50k. It’ll set me back 4 and change once it’s all done, but safety is important…  Also need an inspection, new in-cabin micro filter.


Decided that I’m over my Mac laptop.  3 years old, 17″, 6.6 pounds and gets crazy warm in my lap.  It’s annoyingly heavy to carry around. It was great when I watched movies on my system and didn’t have a TV in my room. The 15″ Retina display model is 4.46 pounds for 2199 (a bit outside my budget, but then again I have held onto this one for so long) and the Air is 2.96lb.  I’m confident I can get a good $1100 for this model after the upgrades to it between 8 GB RAM and a 128 GB SSD. so my upgrade would be 4-500 for a system that is fast, light and actually comfortable to use. I use my computer everyday so while it seems like a lot of money on the surface I’d gain a lot from it.

My bf and I got a $140 skillet for 49.99.  Had to drive 20 min out of the way to get it, but totally worth it once you look at the long-term value of a purchase.

Debt Free 32

Some of my readers may wonder where I went (all 10 of them lol). Decided to rename my blog to emphasize more of the focus.  The original name ‘No More MBA Debt’ was a bit misleading.  Under 50% of the debt I incurred was from my MBA program.  The rest was from undergraduate studies. Also as much as I would love to meet Joe Mhalic in person and have a beer, the original name always struck me as a cheap knockoff of what he was doing.

Why Debt Free 32?  After giving it some thought, my original plan to be out of debt still stands.  Debt free by April 7, 2015. I will be 32 in August 2015.  So wouldn’t it be nice to celebrate my 32nd birthday without having any consumer debt? Hence the name Debt Free 32.

Apple released a series of new laptop products today.  I’ll be honest I really want a new MacBook, either an Air (1499) or a Pro 15 with the new crisp Retina display (2199).  I can likely pull 1100 on eBay for the model I have now with the SSD upgrade. I keep going back and forth on it though. Something newer and greater will always be on the horizon.  However this behemoth is not very portable and is a pain to type on in my lap since it gets so warm.  I may upgrade only if I find a great deal and I am out of credit card debt at the time.

New computers don’t hold the same appeal to me they once did.  I used to buy the newest model of whatever Apple put out, somehow justifying it subconsciously that I would find a way to pay for it.  It never happened and I slaved away at a low paying job for a month in some cases just to buy this shiny new toy.  I also use computers all day at work.  Granted they’re boring Windows 7 Dell machines but still.  Life is about variety and I can think of far more entertaining things than sitting in front of a computer.

I know I keep harping on it, but in two weeks I’ve worked ~96 hours. In NY I only put in 75hrs on a good week.  Getting more work done, but neglecting exercise and much wind-down time in general. Every hour of it was justified though, my team is somewhat understaffed compared to others and the new-hires are still in training.

Get paid Friday.  Updating again then.  Cheers.

New House!

So stoked about moving into the new house, even with all the items to worry about leading up to the final move-in date. Just a couple of pictures before I go to bed. It feels amazing to have a place to call our own.  Especially with this heat building up.  My car read 100° today.  A/C on full blast and I’m not looking forward to that bill.

I have a bunch of low quality pics, but these are the better ones I have. 🙂


Some pictures of the new placeImage


Rough week…

This week coming up is a particularly rough one for me, some unexpected expenses combined with a need to not use my credit cards at all.

I’ve been through tough times before and this is like no other. Come Monday I will have approximately $4 left in my bank account.  Over the past week I did the following things:

  • went out with my coworkers for dinner, paid my way to the tune of 27.89
  • registered my vehicle for another year at our new address 63.75
  • bought some items my partner’s coworkers birthday party 16.08
  • spent 50.26 on fuel
  • spent almost $70 on eating out, as we have not had ample time to go grocery food shopping, totally exhausted after work (we’re also beginning to move items out of the apartment).

On the plus side I’m really racking up the overtime which will definitely have a positive impact on my next paycheck. Been feeling a little bit stressed and burned out though.

I may be a nerd, but I like to look at the progress I’ve made since moving. My net take-home pay when I lived in New York was between 850 and $900 every 2 weeks. Now it is several hundred dollars higher and for once I feel I am able to make traction in my debt payoff efforts.

Other than that, there’s not a whole lot to report, I’ve been pretty disciplined in my spending habits. Still trying to figure out what to do around here that’s fun and economical. Getting out of debt isn’t sexy and I don’t have any patience…

Making Progress – Down to 44605.57

Oh boy, so much going on.  The last work week I got Down to 2551.90 in credit card debt as of today June 3, 2012.  I’ve paid 500 in the last week.  Making some major headway.  This week I worked crazy hours, almost to the point of burnout.  49 hours in a week, when I typically work 40.  Got to work an hour early, stayed a half hr to an hour late.  On Thursday I worked through my lunch break.

Spent $20 on a VGA cable (yeah, crazy I know) so I can hook up my spare monitor at home. One thing I have noticed about myself is that I can’t watch TV and work at the same time.  I am wired to do single-tasking.  Focusing on too many things at once literally drives me crazy.

Snapshot of my current debt:

Student Loan – 42053.67
Credit Card – 2551.90
Total = 44605.57


I went to a restaurant downtown for a friend’s birthday.  My partner paid for my meal as he often does, had a blast. My car was valeted.  Went to start it up and the only thing it did was click. The windows wouldn’t even roll down. One of the managers at the restaurant was kind enough to give me a jump.  Brought the car to AutoZone since my Duralast Gold battery has a 36 mo free replacement guarantee and 8yr/96m warranty which would be prorated.  There has been no problem with the car starting up since.  Hopefully I don’t have an unpleasant surprise in the morning. I still suspect the attendant left the accessories on while we were eating for 2 hours.  Between my 2 amps, sub, radio and a/c that would kill the battery quickly.

We completed our closing on Thursday!  We’re financing 135k at an interest rate of 3.75%, total est monthly payment is 1020, plus HoA of 99 so 1120.  Our rent is 1285.  Still have a lot of things to do like move everything, setup the electricity, tv / internet, water. Met our neighbors recently, they seem really nice.  One of them is from New York, not too far away from where we used to live.  Small world eh?

I also need 4 new tires in the near future.  Been pricing out some deals, but I really don’t want to go into an extra $500 worth of debt.  You can see the top of Lincoln’s head which isn’t a good sign.  Should be fine in the dry, it’s the wet I’m concerned about. Holding out for a crazy deal before I buy.



Off to bed now, a new week awaits and I need to be refreshed!