So much cleaning!

Friday, April 25, 2008

So this afternoon, after much lounging about, I went down to the basement and organized 6 boxes of my junk. After much deliberation I only kept 2 boxes worth of stuff. Go me!

I am really proud of all the decisions I've been making. I need to keep on a roll!


Thursday, April 24, 2008

So I went luggage shopping with my mom a couple days ago to see if I can possibly get a peice of luggage that would be tall enough for my tripod (28' high) and my umbrella (34' high). Well, I have come to the conclusion that most luggage will fit my tripod just fine, I cannot find luggage that will fit my umbrella. Won't happen. I picked up some of the biggest peices of luggage I could find (the kind that I laugh at in the airport thinking 'who needs all that space?!'), and my umbrella still can't fit in, even diagonally.

So, I have a dilemna. I love the umbrella. I bought it in London. It's made by an old school umbrella-making company and it's the old-style long ones. It has a rosewood handle and is black. It also cost me a pretty penny: £49.95 to be exact. I'd hate to leave it here, only to have to buy another one there - it certainly rains in London!

Now, Air Canada used to allow umbrellas on-board, exclusive of your carry on items (purse and luggage), but taking a quick peek at their website, doesn't look like they do that anymore:

I'm not sure if umbrellas fall into the 'outer garments' section. I doubt it, knowing airlines. My umbrella could be used as a weapon. I suppose. It's kinda pointy.

So, then, I have a problem. I could pack it in a box and check it, but that means that I'll only be able to bring 1 checked item, otherwise I'll be charged for having a 3rd peice.

If I knew someone was comming to visit me soon, I could get them to bring it - but no one I know is comming here directly.

Well, that'll be something I have to think about. I suppose it wouldn't be the end of the world to buy a new umbrella - but I was just talking about buying things I don't need/ already have!


Bumming hard...

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

.. So, I was going through my shelf of toiletries and started taking things out of their bins/baskets and placing them into boxes in order to clean/sort/throw out some of the stuff. I mean, I can't take it all with me.

But man, I had no idea I had so much junk. Like, so much. Don't believe me? Take a look for yourself:

To get an idea for size, those boxes are subway bread boxes. They hold 70 sticks of uncooked bread. There are four of them, and they are sitting on my bed.

That's a lot of toiletries. I was going through them and the amount of stuff I purchased (or others bought for me) that was completely unused was a bit horrendous. I was actually ashamed of it all. I hate wasting things, and all this waste was just staring at me in the face. I even contemplated taking some of the unwrapped things back and seeing if I could even get a gift card or something, but I dunno.

It's just horribly depressing how much money I waste on things I don't even use. It actually makes me mad. Once I throw it all out I'll feel better, but for now, it's sitting in my room, taunting me.

I don't know what it is about toiletries. I will always go out and buy a new face-cleaner, or new lotion, or fancy eye-shadow, only to never use it. I really need to remind myself that no matter what type of fancy lip-balm I will buy, I always fall back on two things: vaseline or burt's bees. I do have some lip stick and lip glosses that I use for fancy occasions, but I don't dress up that often. I rarely clean my face (I know, it's bad), and I need to stop buying hand and body lotions because I don't use those either. Siiiigh.

That's it, next month's toiletries budget is $15. I refuse to waste more money on things I don't need.

(On a side note, it's too bad my sister is leaving the same time as I am, otherwise I'm sure I could dump all this stuff on her and she'd love it.... haha)

I hate Air Canada...

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

... and their stupid fares. I wish someone could explain to me why flying one-way is more expensive than flying round trip?!
Okay, so, look at this:

Here is me, trying to book a one-way flight from Toronto to London:

Grand total: $1145.00! That's insane. In. Sane. Now, take a look at this:

Here I am, booking a round-trip flight (with the same outgoing flight might I add):

It's only $780.00!! That's a difference of $365!! Yeeeeeesh. I just don't understand it.

You may notice that the "Fare Types" are different. On the one-way flight I have to fly the more expensive 'Latitude Plus" fare, seeing as they don't offer the "Tourist" or "Leisure" classes on a one-way flight.

Usually, when booking a round-trip flight, you will see the following fare choices:

(And another thought, why have they broken down Executive class again? I remember when there were only two classes: first and coach. I think paying $3214 for a flight is crazay unless you have so much money you don't know what to do with it.)

But, when you select "one-way" flight and go to choose your flights, all you get is this:

So, somehow they have eliminated the "Tourist" class, and the only thing available is "Latitude Plus" and first class. The little dash under "Leisure" makes you think that may it is just sold out, but no, you can book it "Tourist" or "Leisure" with a round-trip flight, but not with the one-way.

That, right there, is bull crap. I just don't get it. Basically what they are telling me is that they would rather I book a round-trip flight and just not show for the second one? By not showing (and maybe not even calling to tell them I'm not comming, just to be a pain), I would be potentially delaying a plane, and costing them money. I would much rather just book the one-way ticket and save everyone the trouble, but, Air Canada, it looks like you're going to make this difficult.

And, if you're wondering, I know there are cheaper flights and companied out there, but right now I'm just sticking to what I know. As well, Air Canada has some new planes with slightly wider seats at 18.5", and I would enjoy that extra space. It's a big jump up from 17.1".

Anyone had similar experiences trying to book one-way flights??

I got Interviewed!

FB from Fabulously Broke in the City interviewed me for her blog, and you should go check it out! You can find it here.

I have also been tagged for a 5 thing Meme by Debt fighter, so just in case you didn't already know oh so much about me, here goes!

The rules of the game get posted at the beginning. Each player answers the questions about themselves. At the end of the post, the player then tags 5 people, posts their names, and then leaves a comment on their blogs, letting them know they've been tagged.

What was I doing 5 years ago?
Hmmm, in 2003. I was graduating high school, taking the summer off (and enjoying staying up until 4 a.m. every night and sleeping in until 3 p.m. every day). That fall I got my job at Subway (have been there ever since) and started saving money and thinking about what I wanted to go to college for.

Five things on my to-do list today ( or things I did today):
1. Empty my 'to-do' folders at work.
2. Clean my desk
3. Finish updating the training manual so I can give it to my boss this afternoon.
4. Update my budget.
5. Continue to work on the budget spreadsheet I am (slowly!) making for Leigh Ann.

Five snacks I love:
1. Ruffles Sour Cream and Onion potato chips
2. Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches
3. Mandarin Oranges
4. Nachos
5. Water (yes, it's true, I am a water fiend. I don't drink anything else hah)

Five things I would do if I were a billionaire:
1. Find myself a damn good financial advisor
2. Get my parents out of debt and buy them a killer retirement home in Nova Scotia and a nice vacation home for my mom on some wind-swept part of England.
3. Invest/Save enough to live comfortably the rest of my life.
4. Buy myself a wicked apartment here in Calgary (like a top-floor loft!)
5. Share the wealth and shop!

Five bad habits I have:
1. Spending money on things I know I don't need but still want.
2. Not returning things I really should return.
3. Being sloppy and unorganized.
4. Eating out when I should just learn how to cook.
5. Lecturing others about finance...

Five places I have lived:
1. Calgary
2. Edmonton
3. Come this fall... London!

Five jobs I've had:
1. Subway Sandwich Artist Extraordinaire!
2. Civilian Coordinator for Police Service
3. ... is it sad that those are the only jobs I've held?

Well there you have it. You want to do this? Then you're tagged! :)

Oh dear...

Monday, April 21, 2008

I might actually be in the red this month. That's scary. Well, it is a lie, since all I'll do is only transfer $1,000 of my $1,400 due to my savings account and use that $400 as a buffer and throw $1,800 into savings next month, but it is a scary thought. What is pushing me over the limit is the $500 some odd dollars I paid to the dentist this month for a cleaning and an emergency toothache healing. Now, I might be getting 80% of that back, which would be nice, but this is why you need an emergency fund people!

Now, to slap myself a little bit, I don't technically have an emergency fund. I have three seperate savings funds that I could've dug into, no problem. But that's not the point. I don't have any fund dedicated specifically for emergencies, and that's a lesson to me. Note to self: While in London, an emergency fund is a must.

Speaking of London, I also learned a couple things from my friendly neighborhood TD CanadaTrust representative. It's going to cost me $5 to take out any amount of money from any bank in the UK (not including the fee that they will charge me and the fee that TD charges me to exchange funds.... doi), but, I can take out up to $1,200 canadian dollars each time. It's not cheap moving places!

It snowed 1.5 feet this weekend...

Isn't it supposed to be spring? I guess I should know better having lived here practically my whole life. Yeeesh. One day it's t-shirt next day it's winter coat. Ahhhh.

I spent all of yesterday cleaning and organizing my things. I'm trying to get things sorted out for both the move and my planned garage sale later next month. And man, do I ever have a lot of stuff!!

It's a very daunting task, trying to figure out which stuff to take and what to sell/leave behind. I always get so emotionally attached to my stuff, and don't want to part with it. At the same time, I have just a lot of stuff that has little to no attachment.

The plus side is, that all the junk is sorted into boxes by category. Things like "Camera Stuff", "Desk stuff", "Books" and "CD/DVD". It's a lot of junk. Hopefully I can sell some stuff and pull a decent profit at a garage sale.

On the money front, I didn't buy anything all weekend! Not that I was trying to have a no-spending weekend, it just turned out that way. I have yet to deposit my paycheque for Subway, which I really should've done 2 weeks ago when I got it. I may still do that today sometime.

However, I think I will head over to Staples and buy this computer mouse. I'm not usually one to subscribe to the "wait 6 months and if you still want it, buy it", but I just toyed with the idea of this mouse forever. It's been more than 6 months since I first saw it, and I just love it. I'm so bad for scrolling from bottom to top of documents, and I think this one will work wonders for me!

I also think I will join Krystal's May Grocery Challenge. I will set myself a challenge of spending $0 at the grocery store. Sound crazy, you think. But the thing is, as I live with my parents, they still buy groceries. When I buy groceries, I buy junk food and crap I don't need. So, by restricting myself to buying no groceries, I will force myself to cook and dig healthy food out of the pantry, rather than buying junk. Yum Yum.