Tag Archives: Windfall

How We Spent It – Windfall Edition!

how-we-spent-it-windfallI have a whole post about opening my 11 year old a limited checking account with a debit card but it’s so dry and boring I can’t bring myself to hit publish. Maybe I’m being too critical but I am a funny, interesting person and when I can’t bring that out in my writing it makes me sad.

We had a really unexpected windfall this week. I sold a domain name. The parenting blog I wrote for years before I decided writing about my kids without their consent didn’t feel right (you do you, no judgement). It was sort of, mostly easy to change over to finance blogging and viola, I let the domain name hang out and not go anywhere because there were articles and things with the byline and I didn’t want someone scammy to come along, scoop it up, and pretend my prior work was theirs.

Long story short I’m in the middle of a legit transaction that will be complete in about a week and someone else will be the official owner forevermore.

Here’s how I spent the first half of the payment for the domain:

$2,500 paid

  • $777 went to fill the emergency fund back up to $1k
  • $215 went to purchasing three cell phones and cases for the kids so we can all play Pokemon Go together (this is the splurge purchase, in case you couldn’t tell) I got the BLU R1 on Amazon Prime day so their phones have 16GB of storage and 2GB of RAM and were $60/ea. I think they were an amazing deal. We did not put sim cards in them or put them on a phone plan. When we all go out we tether them to our phones. (Our $44/mo plans from Net10 have 5GB of data per line so that’s more than enough for the whole family.)
  • $1500 to fill the rent savings buffer so it’s ready to pay the 3 month payment come November. (I raided it last month to pay off the Macy’s card so it would stop bothering me at 3am.)

$2500 (second and final installment)

  • $1100 for special contact lenses to help slow Middle Sister’s myopia progression. OrthoK are gas permeable hard contacts that you wear while you sleep and your vision is perfect during the day with no glasses and no contacts. It sounds like magic, doesn’t it?
  • $500 Back to school shopping (I don’t think we will spend nearly this much but after spending over $500 in registration fees for the three girls when I did the online registration for next year I kind of wonder if maybe I really will spend this much. They do get reduced lunch this year but it will be the last year, which I see as a blessing because if we make too much for reduced or free lunch we should have enough to send them with lunch or buy it.)
  • $200 for a chest freezer (I regret selling the one we had when we moved. We can’t fit Costco sized Eggo waffles and meat in the freezer at the same time even after we break it all up and put it into little ziplock bags.)
  • $400 for a doctor appointment for Mr. Brickie in a couple weeks. (Elective surgery)

The leftover ($300ish) is in the emergency fund account because there is nowhere it needs to go that will give me any more benefit than anywhere else so it will sit until it becomes the *oomph* we need later on. (Update) Whoops! When I first wrote this it was in the emergency fund. Then I spent some money on a giant bottle of Crown Royal for my friend’s birthday, took the kids out to eat at a “better than bargain but not elite eating” restaurant and that brought my extra down more than I even want to admit. Yikes.

This is why I spend money BEFORE I get it. If it’s spent in my mind, it’s spent. If it’s hanging out being extra…I’ll spend it. I also bought a really cute shirt. I blew the $300. I’m not quite ashamed but it definitely wasn’t the plan. Ah well, my spending all included the kids so it’s not like I had fun without them. Heck, if I had gone without them it wouldn’t have been so expensive! LOL Everything else is still the same as listed above. (End of Update)

Nothing exciting or sexy, no cool vacations or amazing stories are going to be created with this. We are using it to keep moving forward so when Mr. Brickie goes back to work we can use extra income to pay down credit cards and get rid of those before the interest-free period runs out.

Of course, if you ask me what the sexiest thing you can buy with money is I’ll tell you every time it’s a secure, non-stressed night of sleep.

The paycheck this week went toward the car payment ($286) and the leftover got split between putting $50 into our local account (we keep a little money in here because it’s the closest ATM and lets you take out as little as $5 from the ATM) and $20 toward Mr. Brickie’s union dues.

Doctor Appointment Update!

Mr. Brickie saw the doctor this week and is healing nicely. The doctor told him at least another month but his doctor’s note finally changed from no lifting activity at all to “lift to tolerance.” It’s a small but important step that reminds us this isn’t forever and he will be back to work eventually!

Unexpected Windfall (Tiny but Mighty!)

Yesterday I practically jumped out of my chair when I heard the creak of metal the mailbox makes when the postman comes round. I’m waiting on that one. last. W2 and yesterday was the first day you can file taxes and let me tell you I am on pins and needles. PINS AND NEEDLES – GAAAAH!

The sooner I file the sooner we get the refund and the sooner I can pay off the car and have that albatross off my neck. I can have that mistake in my rearview. I can have that money to put toward debt and finally kick this whole being poor thing in the ass. (Not being poor won’t happen overnight but this is it, my friends, this is the tipping point where it’s going to get so much EASIER and It’s going to feel like the things we do MATTER and it will finally stop feeling like peeing in the ocean! I mean, not that I’ve ever peed in the ocean. Who does that? Weird, right.

Moving on.

There was not a W2 in the mail, but there was a check for $92 from our former dentist. We went there right about six months ago (I’m a fanatic about getting my kids into the dentist twice a year like clockwork) and since we’ve moved it’s a 34 mile drive that costs $12 in tolls to get to the dentist but I kept going because the whole setup was cool and kid-friendly and my kids love the dentist and that’s worth a lot of time and effort in my book. But the last time we went they charged me for fluoride on all three kids and it came out to $92. They knew it was only covered by insurance once a year and we’ve been going there YEARS and this is the first time they did it and when I told the woman behind the desk she was so mean and was all, “Oh, well, you have to pay.” I was all, “You do this and we won’t be back.” She was all, “I’m sorry you feel that way.” (Said in that way that is clear she is saying don’t let the door hit you where the good Lord split you, not in a really sorry way at all.) So I left and searched high and low and found a local dentist who has the same kid-friendly philosophy and wrote them off mentally. I got a reminder phone call and explained why I wouldn’t be coming back and like mana from heaven I got a refund check for the fluoride.

Part of me wishes they just hadn’t charged me in the first place. Scratch that. I really wish they had asked me about the fluoride so I could refuse the treatment since it was in my file what the coverages were for my kids and it hasn’t changed. I really wasn’t trying to get anything for free. It’s not even the money, really, it was that awful woman’s attitude toward me when it was HER mistake she was covering up.

Oh well. Now I don’t have to spend four hours getting three kids’ teeth cleaned and find parking downtown in Chicago for the privilege.

I’m not sure why I felt guilty when I opened the mail and the check was there. I wanted to pick up the phone and say I was sorry but for the life of me I don’t know why. I didn’t yell or cuss at anyone during this whole process on any of the phone calls. Why would I feel bad or guilty or icky because they made things right?

It doesn’t make sense.

I deposited the check and for now it’s in my “Buffer” category in my budget because I don’t know exactly what I should do with it. I could pay off the Target credit card (I bought the three girls comforters on sale because the ones they had before literally fell apart during the move and our afghans weren’t enough when it turned really, really cold. I had them in bed with me until the comforters came in the mail and we were all just bundled all up under there and I was getting kicked in the face like you wouldn’t believe.

Man, I need my space when I sleep.

So I could just pay that off and have a little less that the refund needs to go to.

I could also get the reduced-price YMCA membership which is $87 for six months. We live a block away from a lake and I really want them to take swim lessons and that would give me a way to do that.

Maybe it’s all just stupid to worry about because once the taxes are in I could do any of these things. I don’t know. There’s not going to be a lot left after the rent gets paid and the car gets paid off so maybe it is worth worrying about.

My brain is a mess.

I’m still sick but less sick than I was. Now I just feel like crap first thing in the morning (until my sudafed and ibuprofin kick in) then I’m good until about 7:30pm when I crash and feel the hot pressure in my ears again. It is, however, a little better every day so I’m on the right road to recovery.

I just don’t know what to do with the windfall. Keeping it in the buffer makes YNAB (not an affiliate link) show $0.00 in my Available to Budget … that way I’m not tempted to spend it somewhere I shouldn’t. Oh who am I kidding? I’m tempted as all get out but I’m still not going to spend it on crap.

Better Decisions I Made Today

how-we-spent-it-unemployment

Windfall Y’All!

Oh. My. Gosh.

Mr. Brickie has had hundreds of listings on Criagslist for the past few years. A few of the things we have sold are action figures, comic books, painting supplies, power tools, hand tools, and even things like those Muppets glasses from Burger King from back in the day.

We aren’t good at Craigslist and it was difficult to get things sold but he kept pounding away at it and I kept reading up and rewriting product descriptions and titles to try and make things seem as awesome as we thought they were.

Friday, we fiiiinally sold a huge lot of comics from Mr. Brickie’s childhood. When we first tried to sell them, I think he was hesitant. Years later? He was as relieved as I was when they sold.

We sold them to a private party last week for $800!!! You might remember I researched the tax implications of Craigslist sales last March and a quick search doesn’t yeild any updates in the law I can find, so I feel pretty confident that it’s a great windfall with no hidden implications. Of course, I’m not a tax professional and this is not professional advice. In fact, never take advice from me. It’s safer that way.

We also got the unemployment check today, so we’re working with an unusually large amount in our checking account right now. That means we have an unusually large amount of bills about to get paid!

…. here is how the expected and unexpected money got spent!

march-2015-hwsi-1

I considered just topping up the emergency fund. I also considered using all the extra money toward credit cards.

For perhaps the first time ever, I decided to compromise and pay off some credit cards and replenish some emergency fund. So mature, right? There are also a couple other lots of comics that this party might purchase in the next few weeks!

I’m really excited that we’ve been able to get things done before the bricklaying season even starts. I have decided to be superstitious today and consider this a great omen for the year. As you know, the goal is to knock out the credit cards and the car by the end of summer (leaving only the giant, gross student loans which is a whole other thing I’ll have to reserach. Gross.)

A Note About The Direct Sales Thing

I’m going to start sticking the Scentsy updates at the end of the post and putting a header on them. That way if you don’t want to read about it you can be like, “Oh, it’s that part of the post, I’ll skip this.” and if you want to read it you can. I want to chronicle this part because I’m a person that SWORE she would never do something like this.

If I don’t do well I can use it to show my kids someday how it went. If I do okay and break even I can show them that there is a moderate road you can walk without going nuts.

It’s a financial thing that’s happening so, basically, it would be total b.s. not to write about it but I never want you to think I’m trying to use this blog to actively sell. Mostly because I always want this blog to be about the financial journey and the emotional stuff that happens because of that journey. So please know when I write about it, I am doing so in the context of the blog’s mission, not changing the focus of the blog on a sweet-smelling whim.

Direct Sales Update

I sent out thank you notes this week, put together and gave a friend a basket party this week, and realized I don’t want business cards. Everything I watch on YouTube is about how to do this or that and it’s like people are just dumping money on everything and hoping for the best. I’m trying to spend less money but put in more effort. That magic place in the middle where I’m creating value with the experience as well as the product.

I’m going to end up ordering something from my friend’s party. Not because she needs the help, but because there is one with an Edison Bulb called the Parlor Lampshade Warmer. I know Edison Bulbs were cool years ago (and really expensive) and I don’t mind that the trend is going mainstream, now. It’s kind of weird and maybe it’s because I’m old but I like what I like and it’s okay if it’s “over” or “so last year” because whatever makes me smile is right on trend for me. It’s just an exposed Edison Bulb in a round glass case. I think it’s going to be really beaufiful and I hope it throws off enough light to use as a little desk lamp.

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