Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Thursday, January 24, 2008

my nervous twitch: shopping

Today, because of goings-on at work, through me into a nervous tailspin. My first instinct when I feel nervous/otherwise unstable? Straight to the online shopping.

I'm the epitome of the emotional shopper. Bad day + credit card = new sweater! Or a new throw for my couch... or new eyeshadow... or new pair of shoes... you get the idea.

After lunch with one of my work BFFs, I went straight for the west elm white sale online. Within ten minutes, I had an amethyst vase, two couch throws (I hadn't decided which I coveted most yet) and two designer storage bins in my shopping cart. And west elm takes Discover! And I almost did it. I almost caved into what I craved.

All of it's still sitting in my cart, with the screen minimized in my toolbar. Will she or won't she?

I realllllly want to. I could use the storage bins to cop a squat on my living room floor and finally sort through all of those pay stubs and important receipts that I have been avoiding for so long. And I feel like a throw on my couch in that green tea shade of green would really pull together the living room. And the vase is just pretty and on sale.

On the other get-out-of-debt-before-it-kills-you hand, I know none of these things fit nicely into that "needs" column. And that's supposed to be the ultimate credit card spending decision maker.

And that sucks.

Tune in tomorrow to see if I officially maxed out my Discover card...

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

financial f'ups that aren't my fault!

The Get Out of Debt train stalled yesterday when, on my regular payday, my company neglected to pay me. Actually, they neglected to pay everyone here who has direct deposit. So, since I had spent my last two dollars on a carton of milk the night before and didn't pack my lunch yesterday, I had to use my credit card to buy my lunch online from Supermac, therefore deflating both my no credit cards policy and my otherwise good weight loss. And no one else nearby takes Discover. Supermac, of course, had run out of salads before 2pm when I finally couldn't wait to eat any longer, so I had to eat a 9-piece Mac-n-cheese nugget lunch. Which, was, um, kind of seriously awesome. But the least healthy lunch ever. After about the seventh nugget, I felt too guilty and handled them over to the next person to walk into my office.

Thankfully, today I was both paid and remembered to pack a salad. Two cups of lettuce and a few grape tomatoes sure fills me up! What about you?

Of course, not getting paid yesterday was not my only financial woe... My bank also neglected to send my new order of checks to the proper address, so I am at high risk for identity theft. Sweet! I spent 45 minutes on the phone with a risk assessor yesterday who only further aggravated me by not fully explaining my options. Closing my account didn't seem reasonable to me when I still had over $300 in pending transactions. I always feel guilty for not being extremely polite to customer service people -- I know they didn't f'up my checks -- but sometimes you just gotta be stern. Eventually they agreed to do things my way. I felt like I should have asked for a lot more for their screw up, but I didn't want to push my luck. I'm no luck-pusher.

I also haven't cut up my cards yet. Yesterday, I was pretty glad I hadn't. But, I do need to get on that.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

::snip, snip::

Hi, my name is Ashley, and I have quite a bit of debt.

(Hi, Ashley.)

Earlier this week, I took a big step and got myself a debt counselor. She's great and we have a good plan to get me debt-free now. I feel good.

The thought of cutting up all of my credit cards makes my feelings less good, bordering on bad. I cut up my cards a few years ago. There are pictures. I am wearing a red tee shirt and pouting. Clearly, that cutting ceremony was all for not.

But I'm going to do it. Probably this weekend. I will sit on my couch alone with my scissors and likely shed a tear or two that my days of trying new fab moisturizers and anti-fade shampoos is over. At least until I can increase my income -- by a raise at work, prostitution, marrying well, or some combination of those.

Being on a tight budget also means that I have to find something new to do with any downtime at work. No more tooling the beauty and shopping blogs for cool stuff. Today, I followed my normal ritual and found this, which I now totally covet. But, even at half price, it's no-dice. I hate you, Visa! And your little friends Mastercard, American Express and Discover, too!

(Of course, should anyone be looking to buy me a "gee, I think you're wonderful and you deserve a nice surprise" gift, that's a great suggestion. I also need a new wallet.)

Thursday, January 3, 2008

What the #@*$%*#!

Just when I resolve to lose a whole mess of weight, the milk-chocolately powers that be decide to resurrect Peanut Butter Snickers?!?

What. Ever.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

2008: the (borderline) obsession continues

Not gonna lie... I kinda thought I'd be pushing out some kids by now. When I was a youngin' growing up in a town where most moms of toddlers were in their mid-twenties, I thought, I'll probably have a kid by 25. And that was cool with me. I'm kind of awesome with kids and always wanted to have a few.

Now that I'm approaching my latter twenties and am childless (and unmarried, and broke...), I've come to appreciate the importance of children not outnumbering parents. They're cute and all, but tireless and I get pretty damn tired just living my own life (that more of a 56 year old, rather than the swinging 26 year old singles I see here).

Anyway, the biological clock isn't ticking, per se, but I'm aware that it will be before 30 rolls around. This is fueled, mostly, by the fact that I spend a large portion of my day searching for hip mommy blogs and sorting through oodles and oodles of adorable kiddie products like elephant-shaped humidifiers and cashmere baby blankets.

My favorites, though, are the ridiculously awesome onesies. I'm pretty sure that when my baby brother was a, well, baby, onesies came only in solids colors of the pastel hue. Ick.

Now, these exist:

And they are seriously cool. Probably not worth that whole birthing thing for just yet, but my kid will be stylin' when he/she does arrive.

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Crappy Year: Good TV, Good Movies and Good Records

2007 sucked. These things, in my opinion, didn't.

Favorite film:
1. Once
2. Juno
3. The Simpsons Movie

Favorite Album:
1. Bloc Party - A Weekend in the City
2. The Arcade Fire - Neon Bible
3. Once: Music from the Motion Picture

Favorite Episodes of Television:
1. Lost, Season 3 finale
2. Weeds, Season 3 finale
3. Grey's Anatomy, "Drowning on Dry Land"/"Some Kind of Miracle"

You're welcome.