Category Archives: the monies

it started off with green shoes

hurry up, spring!

Actually, it started off with a towel.

Actually, no, backtrack some more, it started off with some books.

Well, really, it goes all the way back to some phone calls.

See – thing is, I’ve gotten three phone calls in three days from agencies interested in me. I’ve got two meetings next week with two of them, and I’ve got an in with the third. That guy gave me a design project to do and said to give him a call when I’ve done it and he’ll get me pretty much the coolest job ever. Huzzah! One of the meetings I’m going to, however, they already sent me the paperwork to sign me up with them and gave me instructions on what to do to get ready for the first job they’ll (hopefully) send my way. It’s all up in the air, but things are definitely promising.

What’s a girl to do?! I had to go shopping!

First of all, I need to buy every book on the market to work on this big design project I’ve been asked to do. I would be the stupidest girl in the northwest if I passed up this opportunity. Even if I don’t end up getting the coolest job ever out of doing this project, I’ll still be learning some incredibly valuable design lessons that I really should already be digging my way into. It’s basically an extension of my masters degree. I think it’s a test. I’m going to pass this test. Just you wait.

So to the bookstore I went! It’s slightly ironic that this bookstore happens to be my former place of employ, and I have the applications all filled out and ready to go should I run out of monies and need a job stat – this place is at the top of that list. The suckerific thing, however, is that I don’t get my 50% discount anymore. Lame. But I am armed with a load of 15% off coupons (a parting gift, if you will). I got my books and decided to walk home. (I had taken the bus to get there, but I knew it was only an hours walk to get back home.)

I loved the walk home. It was not boring at all. Wallingford? You’re awesome. I was also feeling nostalgic after being in that bookstore, so I decided to prank call the store I worked in. Problem is, the woman who answered the phone I would never play a joke on in a million years. I just love her way too much. So I sighed and gabbed instead. The phone was handed off from person to person until my cell died mid conversation. It was lovely.

Well, I had to walk by Ballard Goodwill to get home, so I decided to stop in for some cheap towels. See, it’s really wet in Washington. Like, really, really wet. I can not keep my window or my window pane or my window sill dry. It drips and pools and spills over with water. My solution was to get cheap towels at goodwill, roll them up, and stick them in the sill to catch the water before it gets out of hand. Good call, Ames. I think it’s gonna work.

But while I was there, I saw the CUTEST GREEN SHOES EVER (see photo). Last summer, I spent weeks looking for cute wedges and I never found any I liked, nor any that were less than 40 or 50 bucks. Totally lame. But then I see these cute green shoes at goodwill and I grabbed them. They were even my size! However, they were ten bucks. Sigh. I can’t drop ten bucks on cute shoes, no matter how much of a great find they are. I need to conserve the money until I get the income confirmed. But they were sooooo cute! Ugh! I decided to hold on to them while I walked around the store.

After about twenty minutes, I noticed a sign that said all blue tags are 50% off this weekend. I squeezed my eyes shut tight and wished a very quick wish that my shoes had a blue tag… then I peaked inside and. YES! BLUE! FIVE BUCKS! Done deal. I was buying them. Now I just need spring to hurry up and get here so I can wear them!

It's a bag! A cheap bag! A perfect bag!

Since I found such a great deal on shoes, I decided to go have a looksee at the clothes. I found a couple shirts, and one of them is absolutely wonderfully perfect to wear to one of these job meeting things I’ve got next week. And then! THEN! I found a black computer bag/purse! I mean.. good lord! Is it a sign?! All these things I need and they’re here and they’re perfect! I ramble. But.. but, I’m a girl and I found cute things for super cheap at goodwill! I was planning on going downtown on Sunday to buy these things. I would have easily spent 100 bucks or more trying to get a few nice things for the interviews.

I think I did pretty great at goodwill. I love Ballard goodwill. Love. Love. Love.

I apologize for this post being pointless and rambley and all about shopping. I can’t help myself.



Filed under Ames, neighborhoods, Seattle, shopping, the monies


Grocery Outlet? My new best friend. I spent 24 dollars there today, and I walked away with over 50 dollars worth of name brand goods. I feel like a thief. I got two coffee mugs (I live in Seattle now, I must have mugs) for .99 each. There’s nothing wrong with them. In fact, they’re awfully cute.

coffee requires mugs

I also got a bag of Seattle’s Best ground coffee for 4.99. You know what I’m talking about – that coffee that costs no less than 10 dollars in a regular grocery store. There’s absolutely NOTHING wrong with this coffee either. It just happens to be ridiculously cheap. (Side note: I know, I know, Tanya gets free coffee every week and I’m welcome to help myself to her free Bux goods, and I will, but I also want to buy my own Seattle coffee once in awhile too and feel like a proper grown up.)

First thing I did when I got home? I brewed up some of that coffee in my free coffee maker a friend gave to me. Score. I then put it in one of my new .99 mugs. Delicious. Cheap. Double score.

I also got two zucchini for one buck. I was going to buy zucchini last night at a regular grocery store but they were asking 2.49 a pound and it was all beat up zucchini. I love my zucchini. I love my zucchini to not be beat up and over priced. So I passed on that zucchini and found perfectly good zucchini at GO for a buck. I bought it. And I bought some Paul Newman’s pasta sauce for 1.49.

I also got a snickers bar (it was .50! I haven’t seen a candy bar so cheap since I was 10 years old!), some Ben and Jerry’s, lots of pasta and tortilla chips and canned goods and salsa and Sabra Hummus and can you see why I’m thrilled I only spent 24 bucks? The Sabra alone would cost 5 or 6 bucks in another store. I can’t complain. I do sort of wish the store was about ten blocks closer to home, but really, walking 20 blocks to save 25 bucks is well worth it. Okay, make that 23 blocks. I timed myself. It took 20 minutes to get there (uphill) and 15 to get home (downhill and carrying three bags of groceries.) I’ll definitely be going back and going back often. And I know I’ll be burning off a good chunk of the calories I’ll be consuming when I see more great deals like 1.50 Ben and Jerry’s. Oh yeah.

A few days ago, a friend gave me a spaghetti squash (or two) from his garden, so I’m cooking myself up dinner right now. I’m using the Paul Newman’s and the zucchini I bought today for the sauce (plus some leftover onion and garlic and a bit of olive oil).

chunky, vegetably, awesome sauce

I spent a whopping 2.49 on this meal, and that’s actually not even entirely accurate because I only used 1/5 of the pasta sauce (although we’ll be generous and assume that the garlic, onion and olive oil make up for that cost a bit.)


And to think I’ll have leftovers. What a great healthy cheap meal.

I love today!

I do wish I had a desk or a table to sit at though while I type this blog post. Oh well. Soon enough. Soon enough.


Filed under Ames, eats, home cooking, Seattle, shopping, the monies

I’m a sailboat, damn it!

I have had a very emotionally and physically draining month. I’ve spent much of my time in and out of doctor’s offices and seeing specialists and waiting in line at the pharmacy lately. It is wonderful having health insurance after going a year without, but all these visits are adding up. On top of that, my tires needed to be replaced (for a car I hope to sell within the next few weeks, dang it), and I had to spend an obscene amount of money on that.

I haven’t managed to save a dime, and I’ve even had to dip into my savings account, that I have specifically for Seattle, to help pay for my car expenses, co-payments, medical bills that insurance didn’t cover, prescriptions, and as expensive as anything else, I’ve had to spend entirely too much money on books and food because I found out my body doesn’t handle food the way a normal person does. This really isn’t a huge deal. I’m enjoying the new food. I’ve learned a lot over the past few weeks about myself and the way my body processes certain foods. I’m excited to fix a few health problems I didn’t even know I had in order to prevent something really bad happening later in life.

However, it has been frustrating and emotional and expensive. Oh yeah, and I’m taking a few medicines that have made me moody. I don’t mean angry moody or pissy moody. I do mean teary moody. Dang it. I’m a rational person. I try not to cry. No, no, I don’t try not to cry, I just don’t cry very often. I’m a normal nice girl, sure, but I’m not the kind who starts crying every time some little thing happens. Until this month. Oh dear.

I was talking to a friend the other day. He said something… something I don’t even remember because it was such a normal sort of comment in passing conversation. And then there were big dollopy wet tears bubbling out of my eyes. Without missing a beat, slipping this line right into what he was saying, Friend said to me, “Oh, and I made you cry.”

“Nooo. You didn’t make me cry!” I said back to Friend. I started laughing. “It’s the drugs, I swear. They’re doing this to me.”

Good friends are priceless.

We ended up talking about all of my frustrations and set backs this month. I want to be in Seattle. I wanted to be there months ago. My patience is wearing thin. I’m waiting and waiting and not knowing (with the job transfer, for one), and all I can really do is prepare financially for the move, so I’m saving everything I can possibly save. It gives me something to do while I wait. Having that one really good productive thing suddenly hit a wall, and even bounce backwards a bit, in addition to the waterworks meds, has really messed with my head and my heart lately.

He gave me an analogy to straighten out my thoughts. I know what I want, and I control that. Everything else is out of my control. My health, my money, my job, a lot of the specifics, they are all parameters that can be manipulated by outside influences. no matter how hard I try to keep them under my control. I am like a sailboat. I have a destination, and all I can do is point myself in the direction I want to go and deal with the variables as they hit me. The wind and waves are going to try to push me off course, and they may succeed at slowing me down and discouraging me, but they can’t change my destination as long as I continue to head towards where I have decided I am going to go.

So you know what wind and waves? You’re just making my journey more interesting. Thanks for that!

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Filed under Ames, Seattle, the monies


You know change is coming when you start downloading financial paperwork for those student loans that have been eating up your paychecks. That’s right, I’m finally going to do it. I’m going to lower my payment amounts. I’m not going to stress about the added cost of interest over time. I can still pay more each month if I want to to help with the interest, I just won’t be required to pay more. As it is, I’m paying nearly half of my monthly income on my student loans with the hopes of knocking out as much now as I can, but if I want to move to Seattle, I need to use a big chunk of that income towards the cost of living increase I’ll be feeling.

I’m not stressing. I’m really not! Things didn’t work out the way I had planned (medical emergency = not paying big on the loans all year like I wanted to). Instead, they seem to be working out better. Go figure.

I just have to learn to swallow the student loan debt pride issue. The new plan is to get an even better job in Seattle, earn more money (believe me, any job I get in Seattle will be higher pay than I’m getting now) – maybe even what I’m worth for a change – and then I can pay off those loans when I’m financially more stable. In the meantime, I’ll enjoy the lower payments and put that money saved to more important avenues, like the life I’m trying to set up in Seattle.

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Filed under Ames, the monies