Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Bah Humbug!

Hello everyone! I've missed blogging but there just hasn't been much time for driving about chasing WIFI when there is so much work to be done. My husband and I have been picking up as many shifts as we can and the putting all spare money into car repairs. Nothing major has happened, we just make sure to maintain our beloved '94 Honda Accord so we can keep him as long as possible. We just replaced an axle and will be having another one replaced tomorrow. After suffering through most of the summer thinking we couldn't afford to get the air conditioner fixed, we found out it was a worn hose and had that repaired. Next up is an oil leak repair but we have to save up a few hundred and get a day off because that will be a big job. We also will need tires fairly soon. Regular maintenance and not ignoring needed repairs keeps older cars on the road longer.

Disorganization kills! I haven't paid a bill late in several years. I've been in control and organized. Recently my sister visited and she wanted to shop for the babies one day so we went shopping. I hate the hoopla surrounding the winter holidays so I tend to avoid stores completely during this time. I grabbed what I was going to buy for the grandbabies so I wouldn't have to go to the store again until January. Since I wasn't prepared for a shopping trip, you guessed it, I didn't have cash on me. That was okay because I had a credit card I hadn't used in a long time and I was buying a just a few things so I could pay it off in full when the bill came. Well, the bill came and was placed on a random piece of furniture and then fell behind it. I ended up paying it off nine days late and am thoroughly disgusted over it. That's a $25.00 fee for being sloppy and a hit to my credit. I'm foot stomping mad at myself over this but the bill was paid and I will completely ignore the stores until well after the holidays.

I've worked retail in various positions for two decades. You see the very worst of human nature during the holidays. I've seen fist fights, public beratings, sighs and eye rolls in line when it just isn't moving fast enough. I hate seeing people becoming even more rude and angry. Many seem to have this expectation of how things are supposed to be, and they just get angry at the world when things go wrong. Running all over town to try to create the picture perfect Hallmark, Martha Stewart, Jimmy Stewart, Norman Rockwell holiday will only stress you out. Let go of the crazy expectations and just have a good time your own way, after all you can never please everyone.

Stores drive me insane in November and December. Places become packed with crazed shoppers and those awful holiday songs are playing at full blast everywhere you go. As you push your buggy and hum along just remember the workers are not listening to a few songs while trimming the tree and eating cookies, no we are bombarded with the same set of songs all day, every day we work, over and over. We go mad by the end of the season.

I don't understand Black Friday. It is just stuff. No amount of stuff is worth my camping out in a parking lot and fighting other people. It isn't even worth pushing through crowds to get something I really want. I'll buy what I need in October and skip shopping in November and December. That's how I keep myself sane.

My eldest daughter and my son recently found a home in the neighborhood that they can afford to rent. It is walking distance to her work which she needed because she doesn't have a car. January first my youngest daughter and her baby can move into the bedroom and the house will be a little less crowded and hopefully a tad more quiet. I wish them well and hope it really works out for them. It's been a rough year for everyone.


  1. Glad to see you back again. Illegitimi non carborundum!

  2. Donna, I'll admit it, I had to look it up. :)Thanks for the big smile.

  3. I hope you can talk the cc company into waiving that late fee. They might, if you ask.

  4. Yeah, WP, talk to the CC company about the fee. I had to do that earlier this year when I forgot to make a payment on time and they did waive the late fee. I think it happens to everyone with a credit card sooner or later, don't sweat it. ;o)

    Merry Christmas to you and yours!

  5. My falling threw me off my game, and I paid a bill about 6 hours too late. So, I have that chore to do--calling to try and get the fee waived.

    I did not understand. Your youngest daughter and her baby are moving in with the other daughter and husband ?

    Merry Christmas!

  6. Yes, PLEASE talk to CC company about waiving the fee -- especially as you pay so consistently at the end of the month. They will almost surely do this for you. I've had to several times when I just forgot.

    First time reading in your archives and major, major Kudos for being debt-free -- that is a tremendous thing, especially now. I wish you much success in your job search -- thank god you got the heads up, at least. Good luck to you in every way.

    And, yes, if I never hear "Little Drummer Boy" again I can die happy :).

  7. Let me just add to the urging: call the cc company.

  8. Echoing everyone on calling the cc company. And wow, you've been busy! I'm glad your kids have found a place to live--hooray! You are a great mom to be so supportive of them, and now they can live on their own. Yet live closeby. Win/win, there.

    ITA on keeping your car maintained. I hate buying cars so I drive them until they disintegrate, and I'd rather have disintegration day be a loooong way off.

  9. Revanche, Catseye, Priskill, Frugal Scholar, and Pamela thank you all so much. I called and they dropped the fee. I had no idea they did that.

    Practical Parsimony, my eldest daughter her boyfriend and baby and my son will be sharing a house. My youngest daughter and her baby who are staying here get to move out of the living room and into a bedroom. See how much room this will free up? We're all excited.

  10. Greetings from the Pacific Northwest: I hope you and your family have a nice christmas day off. And that 2012 brings your family joy, good health, jobs, peace and maybe some fun travel for you!

  11. Hello WP,
    I just wanted you to know that you are in my prayers. Good luck this month. I know your store will be closing. Please give us an update and let us know how you are doing.

  12. I hope you post an update soon. I think we all miss your voice and want to hear what's going on. Are you doing OK?

  13. Zoe, I had to laugh about the nice day off comment. I had to work and I caught the worst flu I had ever had and had to work all day because no-one was available to call in on the holiday. The new year is falling into place nicely though.

    rbrown2, and update is on the way. :)

    Karen Datko, I'm working on that update. I'm doing well. It always amazes me how things fall into place.

  14. I agree, it is just stuff. Why all the craziness and incessant shopping in November/December? I love living in the States, but I think in the future when I'm financially, I will spend every November and December out of the country. Skip the whole thing!