Monday, November 10, 2008

Day 8 – Getting over the shock

Is it really possible that we saved nearly $500 - $600 last week by not spending any money? I am still finding it hard to believe. On one hand, I'm excited about the actual money we saved, and on the other hand I am embarrassed over how much we may have been wasting these last few months. We looked over our finances on our Mint account (which we love, by the way) and based on past spending patterns, it seems pretty accurate.

Bills continue to roll in. I got a $30 bill from a specialist I saw recently and need to check to make sure I didn't already pay it. And then I got whammed with a $251.31 hospital bill for the thyroidectomy I had done LAST November 26, 2007. Nothing like efficiency on the part of health care insurance… I don't know why they are trying to charge this to me now, so I am sure I will be spending quite a bit of time frustrated on the phone with our former health care insurance to try to figure this one out. Not my idea of a fun way to spend a morning.

On a brighter note, I culled through a bunch of piles of clothes that have been accumulating in my bedroom. My last two trips to Africa were less than three weeks apart, and I hadn't fully unpacked yet! So I got a neater and more peaceful room out of my efforts as well as some possible extra cash ---I decided to return some clothes. I have a nice travel skirt to return (too small), some J-41 shoes which I love but are too small, a pair of pants I bought last time I was at Target (not flattering), and a sports bra/tank (I decided I already have enough since I do laundry every other day anyhow). All in all, this should be a good way to put some money back onto our credit cards! Oh, and I forgot to report that last night we cut up our credit card with the highest interest rate, which was earning us nothing, and we hadn't had it for a super long time anyhow. While I'm on the phone with the health insurance tomorrow, I will also multi-task and try to score some lower interest rates on the credit cards we still have. I'll let you know how that goes.

On another blog, someone suggested that watching electric/heating costs is a good way to save money. I totally agree, and we're working on it. I think we need to start with the winter weather-proofing. Our house was built in the 1930s and it has its share of issues. In the DC area, temperatures are supposed to drop to near freezing tonight which is cold for us, so we better get started soon. In the meantime, I'm going to go out to our little backyard garden and pick the last of our green tomatoes and the basil in case it does actually freeze.

Lastly, for anyone following my thyroid issues and current low-iodine diet, I am proud to report that even on this diet where I have to avoid so many foods, I have not yet gone to the grocery store. I really thought I would need to, or worse yet, I would use it as an excuse to go shopping. At least now, I think when I really absolutely do need to go, I will be able to keep it to the bare minimum needed.

Another day down. Thanks for your support and comments. And here's a shout-out to my cuz who is planning to stop spending tomorrow. Glad I could be of some inspiration!

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