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Archive for October, 2008

Goal #2 ... COMPLETED!

October 29th, 2008 at 01:25 am

Just wanted to post a very big milestone reached today:

I just reached Goal # 2 for my home loan deposit account!!!

Current Balance: $2098.64

$2000 always seems to be the biggest hurdle for me. So here's hoping that my HD fund starts attracting money like a magnet from now on!

new shirts, weekend spending.

October 26th, 2008 at 03:28 am

The weekend went past without much spending, which is always good!

On Friday night we went out for dinner. I spent $13.90 on a pizza and $5 on icecreams for dessert.

Saturday I spent $2.50 on some cherry tomatoes. We had a family gathering (BF's family) and were asked to bring a plate of food. I made a roast pumpkin & potato, rocket, sundried tomato pesto & cherry tomato salad (it all got eaten - so I am guessing everyone liked it). It was good that I had all the ingredients already, except for the cherry tomatoes.

Today I went to the markets and bought fruit and vegetables for the week. My portion was $15. I also bought the rest of the groceries from the supermarket, and spent around $22.

No other extra spending!

Today also, while BF and flatmates BF went to a car race/cruise thing, flatmate and I screenprinted some shirts. So I have five new shirts now. (actually I had the shirts before, obviously, but now they have prints on them! )
I just used prints that BF had already cut out. He has been doing them for 10+ years and they look much cleaner and better than mine. Smile I did a ship on one tshirt, a mummy on another, a car (the model that my BF and his friends are all into) a cowboy on a horse, and a samurai. they all turned out really well too.

first home buyers grant doubled!

October 20th, 2008 at 03:05 pm

We had an announcement last week on television that interrupted the normal show. It was Kevin Rudd (our prime minister) announcing that they would be increasing the First Home Buyers Grant from $7000 to $14000, and the Builders Grant to $21000!
He explained that it was to counter what was happening in other countries where property prices were decreasing. It will help new home buyers and start to create a little more demand for property again (as it was starting to slow). At the same time it's now getting harder again to get loans - so there won't be anyone getting loans who can't afford it (well - there will be LESS people..) Despite what anyone says, I think it's a good move. I know that we can afford it, and I know that with the first home buyers grant, it will be going straigh onto the loan, or to help pay for any outstanding solicitors fees.
*sigh* if only we could build...
(that would be our dream, of course it won't be happening for many more years...you need a 20% deposit to apply for a loan to build, to get the $21000 grant. You technically don't need a deposit to buy a house at this stage, and you still get the $14 000.)

And yes, I do understand all the negatives on K Rudds move. However, my own personal opinion is that I like his choice. I think it's about time it was done. It will make it easier for some people, and it will help the country in the long run. Yes, it will push prices up. Yes, it will inflate the market. Yes it will make it harder to find a house to buy, because there will be many other people looking. Yes yes yes. I realise all that, but I think it's a good sign the our government is looking to change things, and is trying to get in early to make sure things don't go really bad, not just pay out heaps of money when things collapse and then hope for the best.



new balances for savings and debt

October 17th, 2008 at 04:17 pm

Just thought I would post my new savings balances - just because I am a little excited about them! I feel like I am actually getting somewhere!

Savings
Cash: $100.00 (in purse)
Everyday Account: $257.45
Bills Account: $1023.83*
Emergency Fund: $277.15
Holiday/Gifts Account: $160.63
Home Loan Deposit Account: $1858.64

Debt
CC1: $0
CC2: $625.39*
Personal Loan: $3741.82

*Amount owed on CC's is deposited into Bills Account as soon as purchase is made to earn interest.

All that I have to pay out of my everyday account is $20 for my home loan savings automatic deposit, and any groceries we might need. I withdrew $100 yesterday for the weekend - I am hoping that should be enough. We are only really going out for dinner and maybe breakfast.

I am hoping to transfer the remaining money next week into my home loan deposit account. This will be when my pay goes through for job # 1 on Tuesday. I will aim for atleast $100. I am hoping to have enough to deposit to make it up to my Goal #2 of $2000. Wish me luck!



more hours: more money

October 16th, 2008 at 04:24 am

Today I got to look at the roster for end of october (it's always the same for me, unless I am working in a different area like out the front, and if people are on holidays). I'm excited because three staff members are going away, so i have been given five shorter (6 hours) shifts for the last week of october, instead of my usual 3 x 8 hour shifts. So I am doing 8 hours extra. That's nearly an extra $160! I still have Saturday and Sunday off, and I will have to do my office work in the afternoons during the week.

Today I had a bit of a spendy day:
Drinks: $6.70
Food: $3.65
Groceries: $12.99
Clothes: $73.11

I bought underwear today. Elle MacPherson Bras were on special for $19.95 - usually they are between $40-$70. It's gorgeous and mostly made out of silk!

Today I transfered $50 to my home loan deposit account. Closer and closer to 2k! It has just been so hard to crack that $2000 mark. You know how sometimes after you reach an initial amount it just seems so easy after that, like money is attracting other money??? Well here's hoping 2k is that initial amount!

BF just transferred another $1500 into his home loan deposit account. Now he has $6k in there.

Sometimes I just kick myself wishing we would have started earlier. Although it's always been at the back of our minds, we've been concentrating on other things.

I guess my pay now has made it easier to save more - just the past month I have noticed I am able to save much much more compared with six months ago.
It is the same with BF, once he finished his apprenticeship and started earning more per week, he is more motivated to save because he can actually see it climbing, and quickly! ($6k in two months aint bad!!!)

Also I have to admit, I have a car, a laptop etc. I have been to see quite a few bands play. I wouldn't trade any of that for anything. Life is experience. If I had a house now, instead of experiencing all that I have, it would be a very different story. Would I even be ready to own a house? Having not gone through all those things? I doubt it.

Anywhoo. Now I just can't wait for the next pay day, and the next, just so I can put more money away!!!

Homebody: this is for you!

October 14th, 2008 at 05:18 pm

I promised this recipe months ago (well, one or two months) and finally have gotten around to posting it.

It's a mixture of two recipes I had, but I have just called it Lentil Dal. It is probably a little different in some aspects, but it worked out well the first time I made it, so here it is!

Lentil Dal - 4 medium serves
1 cup lentils (i used green lentils)
3 cups diced vegetables (i used pumpkin, carrot, potato, cauliflower, finely diced onion, celery)
2 tablespoons each of: freshly grated ginger, crushed garlic, extra virgin olive oil, brown sugar
1/2 cup lemon juice
1 teaspoon each of: ground cumin seeds, ceyenne pepper, cinnamon, turmeric, paprika, 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg, salt, black pepper, mustard seeds
1/2 cup chopped fresh herbs (coriander, marjoram, etc)
1 tin diced tomatoes


In a small saucepan, boil 3 cups of water. Rinse the lentils under cold water and add to the boiling water. Cook for 8-10 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a larger saucepan with a heavy base, heat the oil over meadium-high heat and add the garlic and onion. Sautee until transperant and add the ginger and spices, turn to medium heat and stir for 1 minute. Add the diced vegetables and stir for 5 minutes with the lid on. Once the lentils are tender, add them (including the water they were boiled in) to the larger pan with the vegetables. Stir gently and add the tinned tomatoes and brown sugar. Simmer, with the lid on, until vegetables are tender (about 20-30 minutes). Add the lemon juice and half of the freshly chopped herbs and cook for a further 2 minutes.

The dal should have a thick, soupy consistency, and should taste sweet/spicy/sour. If not, add a little more cinnamon/lemon/sugar/ceyenne etc.

Serve with plain yoghurt to make a complete protein dish, and sprinkle with the left over chopped herbs.

survey sites i use

October 14th, 2008 at 02:07 pm

I joined another survey site yesterday and have already earnt $5. They deposit it into your paypal account at the end of the month. It's a Frucor beverages consumer panel thing. For anyone in Australia who wants to know which sites are good, here is a list of the ones I am with:

Emailcash (have gotten $30 from them so far - 1/3 of the way towards getting another $30)

Valued Opinions (have gotten $20 coles giftcard from them and am close to getting another)

WhatDoYouThink (a bit like emailcash - haven't gotten any $ from them but am probably 1/4 of the way there)

Global Test Market (haven't gotten any $ from them either, but am halfway towards $50 - I think they send a cheque)

That's all I can be bothered with - I don't use it as my income, just something I can do that might give me a couple of bucks here and there.

So anyway, I have gotten $50 so far, for doing pretty much nothing which is nice. I'm pretty close to getting another $50 in the next month or so.

clothes expenses

October 12th, 2008 at 10:48 pm

I'm still around, but just haven't been posting this week. Haven't really got a lot to write about at the moment. I went on a little shopping spree on saturday and bought:
three pairs of shorts
two nice shirts
a tshirt
five pairs of undies

and i only spent $93! I think I did well. That means there is $407 remaining for clothes expenses.

I have decided to get:
-a nice black, waist or longer legnth coat
-new blue jeans (probably skinnies)
-a couple of summery skirts
-a pair of beach pants (linen or cheesecloth material, wide-leg style)
-a pair of boots
-a couple of nice bras
-another sports bra

We will see how that goes. I am pretty sure I don't need anything else, so I should be right until at LEAST the end of summer, if not all the way til next summer. (If I get the jeans, coat and boots, it should take me through winter up to this time next year again for summer!)

I am nearly at Goal #2 for my house fund. I managed to whack another $100 in last week extra. This week I should be able to do the same. Yay!

what do you eat for breakfast?

October 7th, 2008 at 05:39 pm

Well, this morning I tried the grated apple/protein theory to prolong my starving-ness. At 6am I ate:

1/2 cup organic toasted muesli
1/4 cup milk
3 tablespoons plain yoghurt
1/2 a grated apple

and

an espresso coffee with 1/4 cup milk & 1 sugar

I had to eat something (a mandarin and two homemade cookies) at 10am.

So that was four hours. I guess usually I last from eating at 5am to 7.30-8am. So it's giving me an extra hour. Is that good? I don't think I could eat any more, I felt a bit full this morning - almost that sickly full feeling.

What does everyone else eat for breakfast?





an update for y'all

October 6th, 2008 at 05:44 pm

Just thought I'd share some updates for you guys - I've been lurking but haven't had the chance to post a decent entry for a few days.

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The festival was great - like I mentioned in my previous post, we spent a lot on drinks (water for me). I didn't actually spend much else though that weekend:
Breakfast (BF & I) $10.78
Tolls: $5.80
Water: $35
Bus: $5.80
Lunch: $9.35

BF's friend paid for our breakfast which was nice of him (actually - we forgot to give him the money - we will next time!) and another girl paid for my cab fare home and was gone in the morning so I couldn't give her any $$. It would have been $6.

Unfortunately they blocked off the stage that Diplo and Goldfrapp were playing at, so we didn't get to see them. Dizzee Rascal was dangerously packed and we got squashed, then pushed to the back so we left (and this was OUTSIDE, in a botanic garden area!)
Peaches was great fun. She can be a bit... forward... sometimes... just not the way I would be myself (even though of course I believe in female empowerment and all that), but I think she's great for what she does anyway.

Everyone else was great too, too many to mention!

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We have a house inspection next Tuesday. Everything should be fine, but I am a little annoyed because flatmate is going away today, and also on the weekend, so she won't be around to help - although she is unemployed so will be home on Monday and the day of the inspection, Tuesday - so she should be able to do some cleaning then. It worries me at the moment because she is moving in a few months to her BF's property that he owns. I hope that she doesn't not put in effort because she knows she won't have to deal with real estates for (the foreseeable) future. That would really suck, because what if BF and I did decide to stay on here? I don't want her to **** up our plans just because she's lazy and doesn't give a crap.

*sorry - venting*

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I have noticed lately (actually, for months) that even though I eat muesli or, in winter, porridge for breakfast, as well as a piece of fruit and a coffee, I am nearly starving in two-three hours. What does that mean? I thought porridge and muesli were low gi, shouldn't they be keeping me fuller for longer?
It's not too bad now because it's the beginning of summer and it's starting to heat up, so instead of feeling hungry, I am just too hot and sweaty to be thinking about eating anything other than ice-cold water. (working in a bakery does that to you). But I just wonder, why does that seem to happen to me? My metabolism isn't THAT great, well, I don't think. I'm not overweight, but I have a couple of extra kilos I'd like to shift (doesn't most?). It's not like I'm skin and bones, lol.

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I just checked my home deposit account, and I earnt $9.73 in interest last month, on $1668.00!!! yay!

I also just transferred $500 from my bills account to my loan account, to save a couple of bucks in interest fees. I also checked my interest on that account, and I earnt $1.95. I think I will probably be saving about that much on my loan too. I guess every little bit helps, huh?

In two days I will transfer the $500 back into my bills account.

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I have approx $90 left over from last payday this week (I get paid tomorrow, then again on thursday). Once my pay goes in tomorrow I will transfer $50 into my home loan deposit account, and an extra $40 into my Holidays account, to save up for some clothes I would like to buy soon.

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This week I am going to make myself phone the doctors to make an appointment for a checkup. I haven't been eating meat now for nearly 5 months, and I was told that your iron levels start depleting around 2-3 months, so if I haven't been eating healthily, they should be nicely depleted by now (or if I am as healthy as I think I am - they should be good, which is what I'm aiming for of course!).

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Well that's all my updates for now!

would you pay $5 for 600ml water???

October 5th, 2008 at 12:05 pm

Because that's what I had to pay on Saturday at the festival we went to.

There was one water fountain - which we found once but didn't see again. The toilets had water but I wasn't quite sure if you should drink from them; they were port-a-loos after all.
You weren't allowed to take in unopened bottles of water; so BF and I both took 2L each at the start - but it being around 35 degrees celcius, it went pretty quickly. 10 hours walking around makes you pretty thirsty.
We spent $70 on... WATER. (BF also spent about $110 on alcohol - $11 for a CUP of smirnoff...???)

What's the most ridiculous price you've ever paid for something?