Not Good News

I will be teaching 1st grade again next year. I just talked to the superintendent, and this is my fate. I love teaching and being a teacher, but my heart lies in teaching the upper grades. There was a chance for me to move to a 3rd or 4th grade position, and I was trying to get it. They chose to go with someone else who has more seniority. That is all I will say about the teacher that got the position… more seniority than me.

Let’s hope my photography business flourishes…

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Tuesday Tramblings

I know Tramblings isn’t a word, but I wanted some alliteration in my title… Tuesday Ramblings just didn’t sound as good.

Today at school we started our science fair project, and my little firsties are so excited! We are looking at how food changes when it is left out. Each table had a certain fruit or veggie and we are making observations each day this week. We are looking to see if there are any color changes, texture changes, whether it gets wetter or drier, and anything else we can see. I am super excited about this project, but I didn’t quite think everything through.

We are observing 5 different types of fruits/veggies: cucumber, tomato, carrot, green pepper, and onion. My mistake was picking the onion. To help speed up the process of changes (since I procrastinated so much and we only have a week to observe), I cut each child a small piece of the food. This was all fine and dandy until I went to cut the onion. I didn’t even think about the smell that this would create. Needless to say, I am going to bring an air freshener with me tomorrow to help with the smell. Two colleagues said my room smelled like hamburgers. I could just smell the onion. No matter what, it is not exactly the smell that is expected for a first grade classroom.

On another note, about a month ago I posted this. It was a bit of a teaser about some possible good news. Well, tomorrow is judgment day! I have a meeting that will either give me good news or not so good news. The not so good news wouldn’t be completely disastrous, but it wouldn’t be ideal. Everybody cross their fingers and toes that I will come back tomorrow with good news!

I don’t have much else, but I did want to make sure to blog again. I may be back on later to post some pictures of our fruits and veggies that we are using for our science fair project. I used manual mode again! Yay for me!

I’m Back

My blogging hiatus was not planned. Like most personal finance bloggers, we tend to hide when things aren’t going that great. I haven’t been tracking my spending very well, and we had to dip deeply into our emergency fund because of how our pay periods are this month. I am back on track though! I also received a $50.00 check from my short term disability… Not quite much compared to the almost $1,000.00 we had to pay in bills, but it was nice to find it in the mailbox today.

Hubs gets paid on Thursday and all will be right with the world again. Also March is a three paycheck month for Hubs! Always a big help! I don’t budget for those three paychecks, so one paycheck will be solely for savings and debt repayment. Happy about that!

I would also like to share some pictures of some things that are almost too pretty to eat. My friend has chickens, and they lay the most beautiful eggs!

It’s hard to tell, but the one closest to the camera on the right and the one 4 behind it are actually a pale green color. So pretty (and yummy)!

Aren’t they just beautiful! I am also proud to say that I shot these in manual mode! I wasn’t completely lost figuring out the settings like I thought I would be. I have been doing a lot of studying on using my camera in manual mode. I want to become fluent with it, and I am getting closer.
My goal is to do something photography related every day. Yesterday was studying the settings on my camera and playing on photoshop. I am learning so many cool things that I can do with photoshop. Most everything is coming from Pinterest, which has been one of the best resources I have ever found. I love it!

I will try not to disappear for such a long time again. Maybe I will even share some of my photography things each day (but I am not making any promises). I am no where near where I want to be as a photographer, but I am learning and feel like I am improving.

Happy Mail Dance!

I got to do the happy mail dance today! I opened my mailbox and there was a little package in there all the way from Canada! I immediately knew what it was and couldn’t wait to get it opened!

It’s my new camera strap! Isn’t she beautiful?!

The strap was made by the lovely and talented Carla over at My 1/2 Dozen Daily. She makes all kinds of fun goodies, so head over there and check out some other stuff she makes!

That is all I really have for you today. I think today will end up being a no-spend day, which is fantastic! This upcoming week is supposed to be our “dreaded challenge” for the decluttering challenges of February. My dreaded challenge is our garage, so hopefully I will be able to work on that this weekend. I will have some before pictures for you coming up soon!

Monday Money Check-Up

I completely blew off my Sunday Night chit-chat last night. No real excuse besides just wanting to relax and not make my brain think at all.

My Monday Money Check-up is brought to us by My Pretty Pennies.

1. The most I’ve spent this last week was on debt payments! I put ~$600 in the mail to finish paying off our medical bills! So excited to put it all behind me and look to the future and what is to come.

2. Today I am thankful for hugs from my kiddos. One of my cutest little guys kept coming up to me and giving me hugs today. He told me (with a little blush to his cheeks) that he liked me. He is the cutest little guy! Sometimes those first graders really can melt your heart.

3. Money can’t buy happiness. One free thing I did last week that made me happy was go walking with one of my coworkers. We have started walking at least once a week after school. It really helps get me exercising and having company makes it much better! We are hoping to add a couple more people this week, so it should be even more fun!

4. I will consider this week a success if I get the house cleaned this weekend. We have company coming in a couple weeks, and the house really needs a good scrubbing. Hopefully homework won’t get in the way.

5. The last thing I ate was Sonic. I had some chicken fingers and onion rings. Not healthy whatsoever! Also cost money, but I had planned spaghetti without thinking. We had lasagna roll ups last night and again as leftovers today. Hubs was a little burnt out on Italian.

How are things going in your world? We are experiencing some crazy rain and thunderstorms right now. Very unusual for February, as most of our storms don’t happen until March or April. During the worst of the rain and wind, Miss Rose decided that she had to potty. Well, I took one for the team, bundled up in my waterproof clothes, and took her out. It was cold, rainy, and ridiculously windy. Rose *loved* it! She came back in completely soaked and proceeded to sprint throughout the house. I did grab a treat, get her to sit, and took a quick photo… Here is the cute, wet girlie.

*Don’t think this was an easy shot. Without the treat, this would have never worked. (The treat is actually what she is staring at.)

Oh the Weekend

Weekends just aren’t as much fun as they used to be. I am ready for weekends that do not include homework or planning for the week ahead. Here is an update of the weekend:

Saturday
Woke up around 7:00
Showered
Ate breakfast
Started reading As Simple as Snow by Gregory Galloway
Ate lunch
Kept reading same book
Got dressed
Ate dinner
Went to KU/Texas Tech basketball game
Got home and read until bed time

Sunday
Woke up around 6:30
Messed around on the computer
Errands at 9:00
Home at 10:30
Continued to read book
Lunch at noon
Continued to read
Worked on assignment… 9 pages (single spaced)
Now blogging

I am tired of reading. I never thought I would say that, but I need a break. Four hefty young adult books in about 3.5 weeks. (Plus 1 book for fun). It was a lot of reading.

I do have some fun updates from my errands today!

I started by planning to go to Petco and then Target. They are in the same shopping center, so once I went to those two places, I was going to the grocery store. I got to Petco at 9:20 and found out they do not open on Sundays until 10:00. Well, I just needed dog food so I would head to Target and get it there.

I went to the dog food aisle and to my pleasant surprise they were having a little special. The dog food was on sale for $13.99 (originally $14.99), and if you bought two bags you got a $5.00 gift card! Not too shabby! I bought two bags and got my gift card. Then went to the clothing (which is why I was there anyway) and picked up a long sleeved black shirt for $3.60 (originally $12.00). I was already planning on getting this shirt because my black shirt is so stretched out and faded… I have needed a new one for a while.
After Target I went to the grocery store. I have mentioned before that I use coupons and my store savings card. Well, today I brought back some glass milk jugs to return. The glass jug of milk costs $2.99 for a gallon, and when you return the jug you get a $2.75 credit! That means that our milk is only $0.24! You can’t beat that! Today I gave back 4 jars, and only bought 3, so our milk was free today!

Overall I saved:
$10.40 at Target (dog food on sale and shirt at clearance price)
$6.39 at the grocery store with my savings card
$2.90 at the grocery store with coupons
$11.00 at the grocery store with milk jar credits

Total savings today: $30.69! Woo-hoo! In one day I have exceeded my goal for the week!

Did you get any good savings this weekend?

I will be back this evening with my Sunday night Chit-Chat.

Financial Update

Well, I disappeared for a while. I don’t know why it has been so hard to sit down and blog lately. I have been busy, but I haven’t had much to blog about. I have been going to work, doing master’s work, doing work at home… Not much fun to blog about.

Week 3 at Carla’s Decluttering challenge is a productivity challenge. I have come up with a couple different ideas to help my productivity rise.

1. Clean kitchen each night.
2. Pack lunches the night before.
3. Not have Google Reader up during work hours.

My financial challenge remains the same: add any savings to our savings account. I wanted to get $20 last week, but think I only added about $16.00. I am going to set my goal high again and say $20 again. I also want 3 no-spend days. I only had 2 last week. I think we have a better chance at making it to 3 this week.

Some great financial news: Our medical bills from the miscarriage are paid off! I sent off the almost $600 worth of checks this morning, and they should all disappear. I am very excited about this! I had put aside $300 each month for a while, as this is what my OB’s office does to get you up to your deductible before you have the baby. Then the money is applied to the amount of the birth. I will continue to put the $300 aside each month to keep us prepared when we get pregnant again. It will help us get into the habit of putting that chunk of money to the side.

I have quite a bit of homework to do this weekend. I should be back tomorrow with my weekend to-do, and then Sunday night for chit-chat time. I need to get back into the swing of blogging more often. I really enjoy it and want to keep it going.

How are your challenges going?

Test Post

My RSS feed didn’t show my last post, so here is a test post to see if it works. 🙂

*ETA… This post showed up, but the last one didn’t. If you didn’t get to see the post from earlier today, check it out here.

So Honored!

Little Lamb over at Little Lamb Wants to be Debt Free has nominated me for the Versatile Blogger Award. I can’t be more honored or excited! I never thought my little corner in the blog-o-sphere would be read by more than just my sister, mom, and Hubs. Each one of my readers is dear to me, whether we have met or not. This is my first blog award and I am just giddy with excitement!

The rules of this prize are:
1. Thank the person who gave you this award.
2. Link back to that person.
3. Select blogs that you’ve recently discovered (and who deserve it!) and nominate them.
4. Tell the person who nominated you 7 things about yourself.

For my nominations I would like to include:

Little by Little
So Over Debt
fat mum slim
Link(Some of these bloggers may have been blogging for a while now, but they are new to me!)

Now for 7 things about me:

1. In 4th grade I “won” our class pet. The first two people who got to school with a note from their parents got to keep the class pets at the end of the year. My mom wrote a note and figured I wouldn’t be one of the first two because I was a bus rider… Well, she was wrong. I got to keep one of the hamsters! He was a nice little hamster 🙂

2. I am the youngest of 3 siblings. I have an older sister and brother. My mom likes to tell me that if I would have been the first child, they would not have had any more children. I like to think that she is teasing, but sometimes I am not so sure.

3. I was in band for one semester my senior year of high school. I played the saxophone. The only reason I was in band was so that I could hang out with my best friend. He played the saxophone too, so we got to sit next to each other and goof off. (I did enjoy playing the saxophone, but I am not sure he enjoyed sitting next to me and hearing me play the saxophone. I was not very good at all.)

4. This one will make all my women readers hate me. I have never weighed enough to give blood. You have to weigh 110 lbs, and I have never gotten up to that weight. My weight usually hangs around 105 lbs. I am 5 ft, 2 in tall and have a fast metabolism. I apologize for my genes.

5. When I was about 4 or 5 years old, I won my parents a TV. We were at my dad’s company picnic, and they asked me if I wanted to pull the winner’s name for the drawing. Well, I pulled out my dad’s name, and they won a TV! Quite the coincidence!

6. I used to do competitive gymnastics. During elementary school I spent about 2-3 hours a night at the gym. I made it to level 8 before I got burned out. I had no social life, and once I hit about 5th/6th grade that is not a good thing. This was one of the main reasons I quit.

7. I am terribly scared of alligators and crocodiles. I have had nightmares about them, and they freak me out! I even hate seeing them at zoos. This is a more recent development in my life, as I do not remember being afraid of them when I was younger. They are not cool!

Thank you, again, to Little Lamb! Make sure to stop by and check out her blog! Hopefully I will be back tomorrow with a financial update. Today is payday!

I hope you had a wonderful Wednesday!