Thursday, February 28, 2013


First off, check out my first EVER guest post! Its on Michelle's awesome blog SenseofCents ...

Today's payday and its not a full one due to Family Day :`(

But I did make to over $20K in my RSP :)

I have to admit that this is kinda boring payday report, not much to say, its the usual money gone before the day is even over kinda paycheque. But there are some exciting things coming up in March.

  1. Celebrating 2 friends birthdays, one was technically in Feb (happy belated B!) and one is in March, but they are planning a joint get-together, so I hear.
  2. St. Patrick's Day - I'm Irish so its my day ;) I typically have some friends over for some Irish food and drink, and some fun :)
I'm still working on getting February's numbers together (and hey, the month's not over yet!) but it looks like I spent a bit less on eating out in Feb than I did in Jan but there's still HUGE room for improvement. So, I'm planning not to eat out for breakfast or lunch, nor grab coffee during the week for all of March. I would add in dinner but I know its not going to happen, we've just been too busy lately with gym and activities plus we are planning on eating out with some friends before a movie tomorrow and the friends bday celebration as above. But this should still help, I just need to plan out some of my lunches a bit better to make sure I have enough to cover at least 5 days and possibly have some back up options.

I should be able to post the numbers tomorrow and how I did on my goals this month.

How did your February go?

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

How to Make Your Clothes Last Longer

As I am on a Shopping Ban this year, I'm thinking about ways to make the clothes I currently own last as long as possible. Here are some of the ways I'm doing this.

I call it cycling, it may have other names. Basically when I do laundry and I put my clothes away, I put those clothes underneath the clothes in my drawers (or hang behind in closet). This way I'm not wearing the same 7 pairs of underwear every week ;P

Cycling also allows you to utilize more of your wardrobe. Since it puts the clothes you haven't worn recently towards the front you are more inclined to wear them, rather than some clothes hiding in the back of the closet. It should also give you an idea of what you wear more often. If something stays at the front frequently and you never wear it, you should just get rid of it for a piece you wear more often.

Here's a great tip I learned a while back. When you switch your wardrobe over for the season (i.e. in the fall and spring) put all the clothes in the closet with the hangers facing backwards of what you normally use. This way at the end of the season you see very clearly which clothes you haven't worn in a long time and then you can make the decision of wearing it to replace something more worn out in your closet or selling/donating the item.

I stain my clothes a lot, I can't tell you how many times I bought new clothes just because what I spilt something on what I was wearing! I now carry a tide-to-go (or equivalent) with me at all times in my purse. I also make sure I use spray and wash immediately when I get home and soak the item as well. So far, this has reduced the number of clothing items that I've had to get rid of by a great deal :)

Another thing that will help make your clothes last longer is to make small repairs. I sew missing buttons on myself. I don't currently own a sewing machine otherwise I'd also hem my own pants. You can also get clothes taken in or out at a tailor.

I currently rent a house that came with a top loading agitator washing machine. I make sure I use the delicate cycle (all the time!) to avoid rips, pulling, and piling (those little fluff balls). I use cold water and only enough detergent as recommended. I try not to overdry my clothes as this can lead to shrinkage. I put all of my delicates in a laundry bag or hand wash them.

I don't really have clothes that necessitate dry cleaning, but I imagine it would help prolong the life of clothes since they wouldn't be in my washer with that damn agitator! If I moved into a more corporate environment and had suits to worry about, I might be more inclined to do this.

So, those are my tips. So far I haven't had to buy or replace any articles of clothing this year.

What are some of your tips for making your clothes last longer?


Monday, February 25, 2013

Weekly Spending: Feb 18 - 24

2/18 - $1.50 (cash - laundry)
2/19 - $1.00 (cash - milk) (+$5.00 cash from T)
2/20 - No Spend!
2/21 - $1.95 (cash - breakfast) + $10.49 (debit - lunch sushi) + $2.05 (cash - coffee) = $14.49
2/22 - No Spend!
2/23 - $11.80 (debit - Dollarama)
2/24 - No Spend!

Total: $28.79

Dollarama breakdown -  gum $0.79, earphones for gym (lost last pair) $3.39, freezer bags $1.13, kleenex $1.13, mini comb and brush set for gym $1.41 (old brush has lost plastic nubs and was scratching my scalp), cotton cosmetic pads $1.13, lint roller $1.41 (because of bunny), travel bottle for gym $1.41.

Everytime I think I don't need something, I can always think of at least one thing I need. In this case, it was the new brush for the gym. Which leads me to purchase said thing and then other things I forgot I needed or were "well, while I'm here" type purchases.

So, again I think I'm cheating on this shopping ban by justifying purchases because they're for the gym or the home, or for the bunny. I will also have to buy shampoo again for the gym as I left my last bottle there by accident and nobody turned it in :(

It looks like I only ate out once last week, but it isn't true. We had pizza on Friday and Wendy's on Saturday. It was pure laziness on our parts. I owe T for my share of the pizza, which I will pay him for on Thursday (pay day) plus the $5.00 I borrowed on Tuesday :)

How did your week go?


Friday, February 22, 2013

What I Learned About Finances From My Family ... Part 2

Part 2 ... My Brother, My Husband, and Me ...

My brother, now he is a great example of what not to be. He didn't finish high school, never got a good job, can't keep a job to save his life. He's not a hard worker, has no ambition, and has no problem living at home and sponging off my Mom. He can't save a penny, every single cent he's ever made his entire life has been spent, and most of it on booze, cigarettes, and clothes. I think my Mom finally makes him pay rent now that he's on welfare. Considering how my Mom left my Dad to his own devices when it came to money (and some of it hers too!) its not so surprising to see that he gets away with being a complete loaf.

Its so funny how living under the same roof can make you very alike and very different at the same time. I think most people inherit a lot of good and bad habits from both their parents. I was a spendthrift early on (Dad) and wasn't too worried about it, I could pay it off later (Dad). I didn't save, what I wanted I bought and I put it on credit (Dad). I'm a hard worker (Dad) and ambitious (?). I went to University and have taken many courses over the years to put me where I am now. I'm now becoming more of a saver (Mom) and wait until I have the money to make the purchase (Mom) although I'm not as scared about making the actual purchase and running out of money - I think this is because I'm still young and working. I can mostly do things by myself (Mom) and learned a lot about handling my money myself (courses and Gail) rather than relying on my parents. They never once told me how to budget or to save.

But I think even if my parents taught me how to budget it probably wouldn't have gotten through to me until later. As much as parents like to say "do as I say not as I do" most kids learn by example, not what they are told. If you see your parents never having a plan, never shopping with a list (Mom), and generally never explaining how they budgeted their money (they didn't) then it wouldn't have sunk in anyways.

I don't know where my and my brother's love of shopping came from, neither of my parents like to shop. Sale was my greatest four letter weakness. Although my Dad was optimistic and didn't blink about carrying a lot of debt, he wasn't as impulsive about his money. He didn't buy a lot that he later regretted.

As for my new family dynamic (married less than a year), we have a good relationship with our money. We don't have a joint account yet (when we buy a house) but we have lots of conversations about money, we know where each of us stands (savings and debt) and have very similar money ethics and goals.

T is good at investing but horrible at day to day finances. He works extremely hard (f/t job plus contracts on the side). He is ambitious and works hard towards his goals. However, he does regrets a lot of purchases (buyers remorse) and doesn't really budget (but does do automatic savings). He doesn't have a lot of debt or makes the money through contract work to pay it off quickly. I am jealous of his ability to make more money to achieve goals more quickly.  One point of contention between us at the moment, he doesn't like the housing market and keeps thinking that we will regret buying a house (if we buy it soon), he'd rather just invest the money and rent. I don't want to rent anymore, I want a house of my own, but we've compromised by only looking at houses within a reasonable price range where we can easily afford the mortgage payment and we will put at least 20% down so that we don't pay CMHC fees :)

So in the end, I think I've learned more of what not to do by learning from my parents mistakes rather than learning what to do. Other than my Mom's frugal tendencies which I'm trying to take the good part from and my Dad's hard working and optimistic outlook on life (except I tend towards Gail's motto: "Plan like a Pessmist so you can live like an Optimist"). My parents may not have made a lot of money, nor spent it wisely. However, we always had food on the table and I don't recall us ever worrying about losing the house. In fact, my parents rarely even fought about money so I didn't realize how deep the issues where until I was older. Although, its obvious I was affected by their relationship with money without even realizing it.

I think this says a lot about me and how my issues with money started and how I'm starting to recognize the patterns in order to not repeat the past.

How about you? How did your family's experience with money shape your money management?


Thursday, February 21, 2013

What I've Learned About Finances From My Family ... Part One

I've watched every episode of TDDUP and one common couple type that comes up is where one is the spender and one is the saver and they get into constant fights about money. But there's also the couple where one is an "ostrich" and doesn't know or pay attention to the money so there's less fights but they're no better off. That was my family.

My Dad was (he passed away in 2009) an extremely hard worker. He worked right up until he was 75 and right up until the week before he died.

He got into a lot of debt due to his "business" - he was a courier in a company where you work as a contractor, he made OK money but almost all of it went towards maintaining his car (it wasn't UPS or something where you drive a company car) and gas. Yes, he could write these things off, but when you spend more money than you make on a monthly basis then you go into debt. I prepared his receipts for 2009 for his accountant and only 1 month did he make more money than he spent. But of course, there's the mortgage and food, etc to pay for so it was even worse.

He did like to talk about money. He taught me some good rules (buy low, sell high) and some bad (businesses should always be in the red - sure for income tax purposes, but see above). He was a perpetual optimist, things were always going to get better ... next month, next year, after tax time, etc etc etc I see a lot of this when people think that they will pay off their debt when they make more money, but it almost never happens. He was always waiting for a windfall (despite being a hard worker) and always played the lottery and scratch tickets.

He was a very giving and trusting person, he thought everyone was his friend - including his banker, where was Money Rules when my Dad was around? He often took bad advice and it wasn't until I started working in the financial industry before I could convince him that it was bad advice. He didn't have an emergency fund or car maintenance fund or even insurance. It cost my Mom a lot to pay for the funeral. He wasn't a good planner, more reactive than proactive.

He was 100% in charge of the money. When he died and my Mom had to look over the bank account for the first time in years she was overwhelmed and asked me a lot of questions, most of which I couldn't answer, only he could.

He left my Mom with a $80K Home Equity Line of Credit and a $90K mortgage at 59.

My Mom is pretty frugal, she doesn't like to spend money. This is good and bad. Sure she saves the money she doesn't spend but a lot of the time its to the detriment of home maintenance and debt repayment. Her house is practically falling apart around them, since no one living in the house is particularly handy and they don't want to pay for repairs, I really worry about what's going to be left of this house if its ever going to be sold.

As stated above, she has $170K in debt (OK, less now that its been 4 years, but not much less) anytime I suggest paying more down on the LOC she has a mini panic attack and wonders what she's going to live off of. It took me a long time to even get her to stop keeping all of her money in her chequing account. She was getting zero interest and putting herself in a bad position if she ever lost her debit card.

She is not a very hard worker, but she works at a hard job (crossing guard where you have to be outside the whole time you work) but only works 3 hours a day and goes home in between shifts. She has very little ambition, even when she was left with this debt, she didn't try to find another job or any other source of income. Yes, its hard to try and find a job at 60 but she didn't even try. She does crafts but has never tried to sell any of them (other than at my uncle's retirement home where she would get none of the profit anyways). When she lost her job in the manufacturing industry in the 90s, I can understand not finding another job in that field (thanks NAFTA! *sarcasm*), but she didn't try to take other courses, get her GED (she finished grade 10), learn computers or anything else that would upgrade her skills and get a new job/career.

She always let my Dad take care of the finances, even though it was pretty obvious that he wasn't good at it. When I started selling investments and was talking to my Dad about investing $5K into a GIC. We had to do a full financial overview. That's when I discovered he had $80K of debt spread out over 11 credit cards. My Mom only knew about 1 and she didn't even think it was maxed. He was recycling his payments(using the room created from a payment made on one card and then take out a cash advance and use that to pay off the next, etc) just to make the minimums. It was me that took them to the bank to get them the LOC otherwise they were paying ridiculous amounts of interest (I never fully calculated it out but I imagine it was an average of 19% down to 4.5%). My Mom then told me that he had racked up a ridiculous amount of credit card debt in the past (about $60K and they had rolled it into the mortgage and then took out a second mortgage). You think she would have taken over the finances at that point, or at least looked them over every once and a while!

My Mom is a hoarder. She practically never gives anything away and takes whatever people give her. She is now the proud owner of other people's crap. I've inherited this and am working on it. Where this has affected my finances is that I would buy stuff that I didn't need to replace other things that I didn't use or don't work but still don't throw out what I have. It makes up for a lot of storage space being used rather dumbly but like I said, I'm working on it.

But she does live very frugally and is a saver so now she's doing a bit better, she's paid down at least some of the debt (LOC is at about $50K and mortgage at $80K), has a $5,000 emergency fund and paid for a $4K roof repair in cash. A lot of this is things that I've been trying to help her with as I'm not sure she would have gone to the bank herself to ask for the LOC payment to be increased, to open a TFSA, change her mortgage payments to accelerated bi-weekly, and invest her LIRA (locked in retirement savings from when she had a pension) in things other than GICs - but still very safe income producing investments, she's too close to retirement to be taking on too much risk.

She will probably have to work until she's at least 70 to get this debt paid off.

Part 2 tomorrow ... My brother, Me, My Husband and My Final Thoughts :)


Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Weekly Spending: Feb 11 - 17

2/11 - $1.00 (cash - milk)
2/12 - No Spend!
2/13 - No Spend!
2/14 - $3.06 (debit - breakfast) + $63.00 (credit - lunch for me and T) = $66.06
2/15 - $3.00 (cash - tip at restaurant)
2/16 - $6.77 (debit - shampoo) + $3.19 (debit - coffee for me and T) +$12.05 (debit - groceries)(-$0.66 to change jar) + $77.70 (credit - water bottle, pet door, and shavings for rabbit) = $99.71
2/17 - No Spend!

Total: $169.77

Notes: went out for Vday lunch on Thursday hence the $63 spend there.

Ok, I swear I'm done spending money on this bunny (except normal food and upkeep costs) until the next time she has to go to the vet. We got her a new cage last week, tiled the entire room with foam mats, bought a doggy door for that room, and blocked off everything she could potentially hurt herself with (or cost a lot of money in damages or repairs). The only money I should be spending on her until the next vet appointment is food and shavings. This should get my budget back to normal.

How did your last week go?


Friday, February 15, 2013

Valentine's Day and Family Day Weekend

I totally wasn't expecting to get anything for Valentine's Day. I don't like flowers, we're on a diet so no chocolate (I may have had a Lindor that a co-worker brought in yesterday, shh!), and we were just staying in for dinner. So, here was the surprise waiting for me when we got home yesterday ...

So cute! And sweet and unexpected :)

This weekend is a long one and we've got a long to do list! But we're also hoping to get some relaxing in and take in a movie (A Good Day to Die Hard) as well.

What did you do/get/give for Valentine's Day? What are your plans for the weekend?


Thursday, February 14, 2013

Payday and Updates

Today is payday, and as per usual almost all my money is already spent ;)

Some important news ... my total debt is now under $6K! Currently sitting at $5,668.87 and my total assets are over $20K at $20,722.81 for a total net worth of +$15,053.94 :)

Its almost surreal to me that this year I should surpass on the positive side of net worth where I was negative in 2010 (-$21K).

Its taken a lot of hard work and dedication and I hope that if there are people who are currently in debt and feeling like they will never get out or never have savings, that you can use me as an example. I've been in overdraft, I got a consolidation loan at 29.9%, I've had collection calls, and a bad credit rating. Please believe that where you are now is not where you have to stay.

Please feel free to email me at or DM me at @morgainemoney if you want to discuss anything.


Wednesday, February 13, 2013

RRSP Boost and Waiting on Taxes

As of the end of business day tomorrow I should have just under $19,500 in my RSP. This is a combination of my usual $550 per pay automatic contribution and a $4,450 extra contribution I made.

$4K of this money is a loan from my aunt. I simply showed her my income tax report I did on turbo tax. It showed that if I made an extra $4K RSP contribution before March 1st that I would get back $3,989 as a refund. So, its basically an RSP loan that I'm paying back as soon as I get my refund.

After I pay her back this $4K I will be borrowing another $5K to bring my RSP up to the $25K max allowed under the first-time homebuyers plan. I will be paying her back in $500 monthly installments until the end of the year (10 months at $500 per month = $5K, she doesn't charge me interest :) )

I'm doing this for a few reasons.
  1. Why not take a RSP loan if you can pay it back right away without interest?
  2. There is a rule that you have to have the money in your RSP at least 90 days before you can withdrawal it from the plan for the HBP. If I wait and contribute as I have been, I won't be finished until mid-July. What if we find a place in September and I can't make a full withdrawal?
  3. I still have to save extra outside my RSP. We live in Toronto. The average townhouse here costs about $355K if we want to have a 20% downpayment (and we do, screw CMCH fees!) then we have to save $71K! And there's closing costs as well. T already has his $25K in his RSP and about $7K saved outside. With my $25K RSP we are at $57K and need $14K more to have that 20%. If I pay my aunt back $500 a month, I can save the other $500 a month outside the RSP. Giving me another $5K before the end of the year and if T can save $9K then we are done. We are hoping to get something under this range, of course :) But better to be prepared.
  4. This gives me another $100 per month to put towards debt. Yes, I realize this isn't a lot but every extra bit helps. I will be stopping my automatic deposit to my RSP. I may have to make a 1st 60 day contribution in 2014 to avoid paying tax (I'm now making more money than I ever have). But if we do buy a home in 2013 I have to pay some back to HBP and we will have the first time buyers tax credit as well :)
So now I just have to wait until I get my T4 and last RSP contribution record and I can file my taxes. I hate the waiting game ;)

And yes, I consider myself extremely lucky to have an aunt that is willing (and able) to help us out in this way. I've borrowed money from her in the past and have paid it back, so she knows that I'm good for this. So, why not get her to lend me the money to pay off my debt? Yes, I could save quite a bit in interest, but I'm doing it this way to "feel the pain" so that I never go into debt for stupid stuff again.

How much are you getting for your income tax refund and what are you planning on doing with it?


    Monday, February 11, 2013

    Weekly Spending: Feb 4 - 10

    2/4 - $9.65 (debit - lunch) and $14.27 (debit - dinner for me and T) + $18.55 (cash - TTC tokens) = $42.47
    2/5 - $3.05 (cash - breakfast)
    2/6 - No Spend!
    2/7 - No Spend!
    2/8 - No Spend!
    2/9 - $25.14 (debit - bulk barn but $10.60 was ingredients for gifts) + $8.48 (cash - dollarstore $2.50 home, $1.00 pet, $1.00 personal care, $2.00 gift) + $7.33 (debit - snack at movie theatre) = $40.95
    2/10 - $142.99 (credit - pet store) ($10.00 cash given to T)

    Total $229.46

    It may seem on the surface that we did much better on eating out last week. Well, that would be partially true. I did take lunch from home 4 days last week. However, Monday. Tuesday, Friday and Saturday we either ate out or ordered in! We just have to figure out how to schedule dinner around our busy schedules. It almost defeats the purpose of going to the gym 3-4 days a week if we eat out 4-5 days!

    I think this upcoming week will be much better. Today I could have ate out, but I pushed through and waited until I got home after the gym at 7:40 to eat leftovers from last night's dinner. Just requires a bit more planning and discipline.

    I'm make a "foodie" gift pack for one of my friends for her birthday. Includes: gourmet flavoured butter, infused basil olive oil, a French baguette, and some Camembert cheese. I'm making the butter and olive oil. Thanks pinterest :)

    I bought a new cage for the bunny. She escapes from the top of this one if you don't hook the top. And if you let her down on the ground to play, she will jump up and down from her cage on the table to the floor and vice versa. I'm a bit paranoid that she's going to hurt herself. The new cage has a ramp on the side that allows the rabbit to come and go as they please when its open. I just have to rearrange the room she's in so we can have the cage on the floor.

    So that was my last week. How did you do?


    Wednesday, February 6, 2013

    My career in money ... what I've learned.

    This post was inspired by Cassie of Tales from the Trenches comment on my Getting to Know Me post.

    I mentioned that since graduating from University almost all of my jobs involved money. Here's a list:
    • bank teller at a major bank (part-time)
    • bank teller and back office admin at a Credit Union
    • mortage promotions telephone rep and then telephone banking rep at a different major bank
    • customer service for self-directed brokerage for yet another major bank
    • back office admin at an independant mutual fund boutique (also started selling mutual funds)
    • investment rep assistant
    • pension fund admin then pension analyst for a major Ontario pension plan
    I would say though that since most of my career involves sales I think that I didn't learn very much about finance from any of these jobs. Sounds strange, right?

    In the early portion of my career, I had to push credit cards, loans, and mortages down everyone throats. Except at RSP time (around now) then it was pushing RRSPs down everyone's throats ;P But most people told me they had nothing left to save because of all that debt that we had pushed on them. I never once helped someone budget or had a conversation about lowering expenses (I had the ocassional desicsion about bank fees, of course) the rest wasn't part of my job.

    I was never in the role of giving advice until I worked at the mutual fund boutique (and even then it wasn't my major role). I asked some friends and family if I could work on an investment profile for them, with the end goal of getting them to invest with me (so I could make commissions). If I helped anyone make decisions with what they do with their money (budgeting, cutting expenses, etc) it came more from the influence of Gail Vaz-Oxlade than my job.

    It wasn't until I was 27 (and already had worked at 3 different banks) that I started looking at my money seriously. I was still quite deep in student loan debt (about $10K) had credit card debt (about $5K) and no savings. One of the fringe benefits of getting my mutual fund license is that any commissions earned from my own investments I get 100% of them. This is what actually triggered me to start saving in a RRSP. Not looking towards the future, not wanting to save for a house (I just started dating T at that time, I had no idea we'd be where we are now), I did it for the commissions :)

    If anything, I learned more about finance from Gail and the Wealthy Barber (which I read in high school) than any of my jobs. Yes, I know quite a bit about investing and once we buy the house I look forward to purchasing some ETFs, but budgeting and saving, no I didn't get that from my career.

    Feel free to ask me any questions you might have.

    Where did you learn about finance?


    Tuesday, February 5, 2013

    #Tag - Getting to know the "Person" behind the PF blog

    This tag comes courtesy of Girl Meets Debt

    The Questions:

    1) How did you come up with your blog name?
    Morgaine is a character from my favourite book "The Mists of Avalon" by Marion Zimmer Bradley. I am seriously considering it as a name for girl if I have a daughter. Its been my online moniker for more than 10 years now. Since I'm still trying to stay anonymous, I figured a moniker was a good way to go. I also like the alliteration of Morgaine and Money.

    2) Which bloggers inspired you when you first started writing?
    Krystal from Give Me Back my Five BucksThe Asian Pear, Jessie from Jessie's Money, and Jolie from Shaking the Money Tree were around before I started writing my own blog and inspired me to do one too. I've also been reading Gail Vaz-Oxlade's blog since 2008.

    Bloggers that inspire me to keep writing (almost gave up on this blog) Cait from Blonde on a Budget, Bridget from Money After Graduation, and Cassie from Tales from the Trenches plus the above list.

    3) Why write about finance?
    I want to become debt-free and be more responsible with my money. Blogging is a way to stay accountable.

    4a) What do you enjoy most about blogging?
    To get other people's opinions and suggestions. I've been struggling with some of my money decisions and having such a support team is wonderfully inspiring.

    4b) What do you enjoy least about blogging?
    Coming up with articles that aren't just numbers. The pressure to promote your blog.

    5) What’s the most helpful piece of advice you have learned from reading other PF blogs?
    How to budget, its a personal thing. I've been struggling on how best to set-up my budget and reading how other bloggers do theirs and the issues and questions they have helped me to want to create my own, not just follow a pre-filled excel spreadsheet.

    6) In terms of finance, what is your main focus at the moment?
    Main focus - saving for downpayment on first home. Secondary - paying off debt and saving for other things so that I stay out of debt for good!

    7) If you could give your younger self financial advice, what would it be?
    Oh God! So many things!!! First, work harder. You're only young once when you have the free time and energy to work 2,3,4 jobs at a time. Second, save more. I saved nothing when I was in school. Three, don't take more student loan than you actually need. Sometimes I got more OSAP than I needed for tuition, I did spend some of it on books and other school related needs, but some of it was spent on clothes and other frivolous purchases. I should have worked harder and saved the money for books, needs, and wants and used only as much OSAP as I needed, it would have saved me at least some of the $21K debt I graduated school with.

    8) Who in your “real-life” knows about your blog?
    My hubby, T but he doesn't read this. I wanted this to be an online diary of sorts and I would feel more self-conscious if he read it. Some of my friends know, but to my knowledge only my friend Bianca reads this blog.

    9) Does your real-life job have anything to do with finance or money?
    Yes, I work in pension administration. Before this I've worked in the financial industry for 8 years, all of my jobs save 1 since graduation have been something to do with money. Its funny though that I would give people advice about saving and debt but didn't take it for myself until I was 27.

    10) What’s the first thing you would do if you won a million dollars?
    Pay off the remaining debt, buy a nice house (but not a million dollar house), go on a vacation, and put the rest in savings :)

    If you decide to join along, please #tag this back to Girl Meets Debt (link at top).

    Monday, February 4, 2013

    Weekly Spending: Jan 28 - Feb 3

    1/28 - $10.71 (debit - dinner) + $7.91 (debit - dollarstore) + $36.68 (debit - Walmart) = $55.30
    1/29 - $1.00 (cash - milk) + $6.50 (cash - lunch) + $9.08 (debit - lightbulbs) = $16.58
    1/30 - No Spend!
    1/31 $146.90 (credit - vet)
    2/1 $7.90 (cash - dinner) + $15.80 (debit - conditioner and hair dye) + $27.92 pet store (debit - food and litter pan) + $6.54 (debit - Kernels popcorn) = $58.16
    2/2 - No Spend!
    2/3 - $25.98 (debit - movie theatre, for both me and T)

    Total: $302.92

    Here's the story from last Monday night if you haven't had a chance to read it ...

    The total for this week is high mostly due to pet costs, damn the vet is expensive! Luckily, I saved the money for this :)

    Hopefully this week will be a lot less expensive :)

    How did you do last week?


    Friday, February 1, 2013

    January Goals Recap and February Goals

    January Goals


    1) Shopping ban - Pass - this is still up for debate - Did I cheat?
    2) Savings goals - Check - put $2366.93 into various savings accounts this month
    3) Debt goals - Pass - I paid $786.26 onto debt this month but the majority of it was to my MasterCard which is more paying down new purchases than paying off debt. I have to leave that credit card alone!
    4) Increase my Net Worth - Check - up $2,903.08 (goal = $10,000/12 = $833 per month)
    5) Track spending and post budgets - Check - only off by $1.84 but I think I had some pocket change from the beginning of the month that I didn't account for having.


    1) Lose weight - Pass - down 2.5 lbs this month, no where close to the 2 lbs a week that they say you should lose, but at least I lost some and didn't gain.
    2) Do something physical at least 4x a week - Fail - Its hard to be motivated to go for a walk when its so cold and miserable outside. I went to the gym an average of 2x per week but I didn't do anything else.
    3) Eat better - Pass - there were a few cheat days but I would say we definitely ate better than we have in the past 4 months. I haven't had a diet coke all year (I'm a recovering diet coke addict, don't laugh, its true) and only had 1 bag of chips, a small one. Had burgers twice and Red Lobster once. Definitely room for improvement here.
    4) Read more books - Check - read 2 books this month: "The Lady of the Rivers" by Philippa Gregory and "Money Rules" by Gail Vaz-Oxlade.
    5) Make more things - Check - made 2 necklaces, 1 pair of earrings, and 1 bracelet.
    6) Sell/donate more - Pass - I posted a lot of stuff on kijiji and craigslist but so far haven't sold anything. I had some bites but nothing has actually sold. I have a bunch of stuff sitting on the kitchen table waiting for us to take to Goodwill.


    1) Post my weekly spending and bi-weekly budgets. - Check
    2) Post at least one other post a week other than #1 - Check3) Comment on other blogs and become more of the community - Check4) Use twitter more (@morgainemoney) - Fail, I keep only checking my personal one5) Post updates on my progress with the Shopping Ban and these goals. - Check
    6) I will update my blog and sidebars with these goals (other than the Closing Costs since this is mostly T). And if I'm on pace or not. - Check

    February Goals

    All of the above plus spend less money eating out!