Archive for January, 2010:

in my next life

Written on January 29th, 2010 by Jamesno shouts

Okay, short post this week as I am a bit lacking for words.  I recently had a revelation that if I were to come back in another life it would be as a Hair Stylist!  Geez, the amount that females will spend at the “salon” is insane.  I have determined that I am in the wrong business.  Face it guys, you know these folks that own the salons are sitting back and laughing at you.  They know there is absolutely nothing you can do to deter your wife from spending boatloads to get her hair done!

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I’m tired of waiting!

Written on January 19th, 2010 by Hopeno shouts

Ok..I know the hubby just posted a blog about how painful it is for him to finish the basement…blah blah blah! Don’t feel sorry for him. We have been in this house for over five years with the plan to finish the basement in “a year or two.” Well each year would come and go, and still no basement. We have desperately needed a playroom and a guest room and so now we almost have that. We have been very budget conscious while doing this project, and I have paid for a lot of things myself with my small but reliable “nest egg.” I have painted, designed, hunted down things at IKEA and Craigslist and done a pretty good job on a tight budget. So don’t let him fool you…yes the floors were a big expense (around $5K), but he installed them himself (and did an excellent job.) And lets not also forget that we are increasing the square footage of our home by 1/3 and adding serious value to it as well. In a week or so, I will post photos of the finished playroom and bedroom. Keep posted.

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spending money at Ikea

Written on January 18th, 2010 by Jamesno shouts

For those following along with the basement finishing project you will know that this has been a painful experience for me.  Both in terms of my back and my wallet.  The Amex bill arrived and I knew that it was going to be painful.  I need time to digest these things.  All the items we had purchased in December including the hard wood floors were on this months statement.  Toss in the holidays and this one really hurt.  So mistakenly I am thinking we are going to slow down the basement project so that I can pay off what we have done so far.  Well the wife had a different idea.  Hope had decided that getting the kids play room and a guest room completed was priority number one.  So I started looking for ways to pinch pennies which brings me to this weeks blog post about Ikea.

You see the original plan was a nice wall of built-in shelving in the kids room.  Well after all that was spent on the wood floors there was no way I was going to shell out the cash for custom built shelves.  I turned Hope loose on a project to slim down the cost.  She went online and put together a wall of shelving units from Pottery Barn and presented me with a configuration that was about a 1/3rd less than the custom.  Being my miserly self, I said we still needed to cut that in half.  Having just watched a home show on TV, I mentioned to her to try Ikea. 

I have a real love / hate relationship with the Ikea store.  Back in 95, Hope and I spent half a year in Sweden (the birthplace for Ikea stores) and came to enjoy strolling through the store thinking how cool it would be to outfit our hip urban home with all there cool furniture.  Flash forward about 12 years and Ikea opens a store here in Atlanta.  If you have never been to an Ikea store it is a totally different retail experience.  They are like an upscale WalMart for home furnishings.  Maybe that isn’t the best description but their furnishings are low in price and very appealing.  Everything is very efficient, the trick is that you have to assemble everything yourself.  So the part I like about Ikea is that you can get really decent home goods at very affordable prices.  The part that drives me crazy is the fact that you need half a day to get through the store!  You see the store is layed out like a maze and you must stroll through all the “show” rooms and departments and see everything, almost like a living catalog.  Along the way you write down the isle number where a product is located and after you spend 2 days strolling through their showroom you are dumped out into the warehouse area.  From here you find your boxes, load them on your cart and proceed to checkout.

It’s a unique experience that everyone should try, just make sure you have several hours to kill. 

So in the end I purchased 3 different shelving units that took me about 3 hours to assemble, but cost less than 1/3rd what the original built-in’s would have cost me.  So while I hated spending the money I took some comfort in knowing we created a good looking wall of shelves for quite a bit less than we planned.

Filed under Budgeting, Credit & Spending Tags:

Smart Phones, iPhones, etc….

Written on January 11th, 2010 by Jamesno shouts

So, Hope had been on me for months to get her an iPhone.  I finally broke down and got her one for Christmas.  I was really dreading the purchase of this trendy device.  Why, you may ask?  Well because I am frugal and practical!  These phones cost a fortune but worse than that is the additional monthly charges on your cell phone bill.

For the last couple of years she has been using the phone you get for free when you sign up for 2 year plan with the provider.  I thought that was sufficient, I mean the phone is for calling folks right?

Well she said she wanted to check her emails remotely and listen to her iTunes without her ipod.  In the end she always wins, but I try to put up a good fight anyway.

To me these things are the biggest time wasters ever.  Well maybe second only to Facebook.  Really, with all the “apps” you can waste hours playing with the silly phone.  I can undertand email, especially for business use.  All the other stuff just seems like fluff to me.

MISER TIP: I finally rationalized the purchase by buying stock in a little microcap tech company that does what?  Sells apps for smart phones!


Written on January 11th, 2010 by Jamesno shouts

Well I knew it was just a matter of time before all the spammers found this blog.  Unfortunately, that means that this will be read only from now on.  Recently I had been getting at least 20 comments a day from spammers, so I have had to disable the comment section.  If you have something to add just email me and I will include it.


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